Road cycling round up
Women's cycling is dissed and Chris Froome might be pissed.
all stages of the 2013 Amgen Tour of California in our videos section (USA access only).
This goes to show you the unpredictability of bike racing. As I write this it's the second and final rest day of the Giro d'Italia 2013. My five-star favorite at the start was Sir Bradley Wiggins of Team Sky Pro Cycling. I also expected great things from defending Giro d’Italia champion Ryder Hesjedal of Garmin-Sharp. Instead both of these guys are gone, victims of illness. That's a shame as these two were set to battle it out in the final week with Cadel Evans (BMC Racing Team) and Vincenzo Nibali (Pro Team Astana).
Before the start I had also said Evans was riding the Giro d’Italia just to prepare for the Tour de France - finishing, maybe, in the top-ten.
Instead Nibali is leading the Giro and Evans is over a minute back, but in 2nd position. At this point the Giro is Nibali's to lose. He has shown his strength in the mountains and it will take a Britney Spears-type melt-down for him to give up the pink jersey.
Coming to Team Sky's rescue is Colombian Rigoberto Uran. He has yet again proven that climbing is in the Colombian DNA, when it comes to cyclists. A top-three in the Giro final overall is a strong possibility considering the final race against the clock is short and uphill.
Wiggins’ abandonment of the Giro d’Italia is also interesting in regards to how it might play out for the upcoming Tour de France. Team Sky's principal Dave Brailsford said the Giro d’Italia is Wiggins' and teammate Chris Froome gets the team's full support at the Tour de France. Of course that was before Wiggo dropped out. Not many people believed that Wiggins wouldn't try to take the yellow jersey at the Tour if given the opportunity. Will Wiggins' departure from the Giro change the dynamics within the team for July? Will Sir Wiggins convalesce and fight for the yellow jersey, or will he support Froome?
If Sky wants to be successful at the Tour they need to throw their support behind one rider. Two leaders is a house divided and as I wrote last week, that doesn't do anyone any good. Brailsford needs to sit down with Wiggins and tell him that his chance was the Giro and it's gone. He now needs to support Froome.
Froome on the other hand had better sleep with one eye open, regardless to what Wiggins and Brailsford might say to the press. Also, Froome might want to look into the possibility of transferring a new team for 2014. If Froome indeed wins the Tour, Wiggins is bound to want another crack at it as well. “Let the road decide who will be team leader” is a bad strategy. Call RadioShack and Astana if you want to double check. A team needs one leader and Sky has been blessed (or maybe cursed) with having too many strong riders on the roster. Let's not forget Uran too – he’ll need only