Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Floyd Slipping

In each of the last three stages, Floyd has lost a little ground. On stage 15, an ill-timed mechanical problem on the final climb added more time to that which was already lost to Armstrong, Basso, and others. On stage 16, a big breakaway launched Cadel Evans ahead of Floyd in the GC. And today, he got caught out on a Cat 3 climb 7 km from the finish as Ullrich and Vinokourov attacked, losing 20 seconds to that group and seeing Vino move ahead of him in the GC. So he now sits in 9th overall, 4 seconds back of Evans and 15 behind Vinokourov. 7th place still might be within reach if he rides a good time trial on Saturday, but anything more than that is looking less and less likely.

Floyd has also received some coverage for recent comments he made on Armstrong. He might not be able to beat Lance in a bike race, but at least Floyd is not an ass-kisser like so many others. See below for more, courtesy of timesonline:

As the race left the high mountains, Armstrong continued what is expected to become a lengthy victory parade. As he descended the hairpins of the Col de Marie-Blanque, he even took the time to enter into animated discussion with Floyd Landis, his former team-mate, who now rides with Phonak.

Landis is among those who will perhaps breathe a sigh of relief once his former captain retires. “For him, racing is a business,” Landis said, referring to his spell with Armstrong and the Discovery team. “In cycling teams, people often talk of friendship, but in that team, with someone who really acts as the boss, that doesn’t go very far.

“I don’t think Lance has that relationship with any of his team-mates, even George Hincapie, who he’s known since he was 17. Friendships can’t exist when you give orders and lead others. That’s how Lance has been able to win so many Tours de France.”

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