Friday, January 10, 2020

"Mr. 60%" returns to World Tour pro cycling

 Zio Lorenzo's (aka Larry T) opinion on "The Eagle of Herning"

Not a typical topic for this blog, but a discussion here got to the point that Zio Lorenzo wanted to put the reasons he thinks the guy is an a-hole here for future reference.

"Mr. 60%" Please Go Home!

Any cycling fan can look up this fellow on the web and read about his career highs and lows. How he went from gregario to Tour winner in what seemed a blink of an eye, followed by years as a team manager/owner. You might say: "Yeah, so he's (just another)  dope-cheat, what makes him an a-hole?"

How 'bout his famous bike throw? Classy, right? Certainly team sponsors Pinarello and Campagnolo weren't too happy.

Someone asked for this to be added, his performance on the Hautacam climb at LeTour. Some might call this imperious or dominating while I'd call it being an a-hole almost toying with your competitors, which is how I saw it (after riding the climb myself) at the time.

Then there's an argument that in addition to a dope-cheat he's also a liar. More details on that HERE.

How many riders on teams under his control were NOT caught/sanctioned/confessed/implicated/rumored to be cheats in one form or another? Is it just a coincidence that the same guy looked after all those cheats?

Who ran the CSC team when this video was made?

He was ousted from the team shortly before this happened, but one has to wonder who inspired the scheme?

Zio also recalls a Giro stage, one with some narrow unpaved sections where the organizers would not allow team cars to follow the riders. "Mr. 60%" protested loudly and followed the stage on the back of a moto as if he was a team mechanic and was seen on TV having his moto driver swerve directly into the path of a competitor. Fair-play's not this guy's motto!

I'd say this fellow is certainly not as much of an a-hole as the guy known as BigTex, but he's close and as such should not be in control of a major pro team. What's next, BigTex' former team director (currently banned for life) or Tex himself comes back? Does cycling need this?

Pro cycling needs new direction - the question is from where might it come? Zio Lorenzo's no big fan of ASO who controls the Tour and other big races, but time and again they seem to be the "only adults in the room" when it comes to properly governing the sport. Is it time for them to break away from the UCI and take control?

Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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