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Quoting Denis Bogan <[log in to unmask]>:

> >Jan Ullrich is the best natural rider out there. Period. <
>
> Just curious.  How does one know this with such certainty while sitting
> 3000 miles away in front of a TV?

I was actually over in Europe in '97.  Every day I would plunk myself down in
front of the tv and watch the race start to finish, live.  No life say you?
Perhaps,
but for someone who understands the sport, it was fascinating to actually have
the opportunity to watch the race develop...
>
> >Armstrong doesn't count b/c he's been artificially reconstructed.  <
>
> Here is where I lose your reasoning completely.  What in the world is
> "artificial" about his "reconstruction"?...[undsoweiter]

Armstrong is the first to admit that he never would have won the Tour had he
never had (and survived) cancer.  He lost so much muscle from chemo that when
he rehabed he created a body that would excell in the mountains.  His previous
body was not suited for overall victory in stage races (though he was one of
the top single-day riders).  And having survived cancer gives him a huge mental
advantage over the competition...

...I respect Lance.  Everything he has done, he earned.  None of it's unfair
(after all, all cyclists dope).

That being said I liked Ullrich before Armstrong hit the scene post cancer, and
I ain't no fair weather fan.

> As to Ullrich, perhaps he has at long last learned the
> wisdom of the old saying, "the world is full of talented failures."

Well Ullrich is hardly a failure.  He's won the Tour de France (and has come in
2nd a bunch of times), the Vuelta Espana, German National Championship, and
World Championship and Olympics.  But he has wasted his potential.  Lance or no
Lance, had Ullrich been more disciplined, he had the raw materials to win the
Tour at least 5 times.  (He won the Vuelta Espana with a second-tier team and
having come into the race out of shape)

>  If so we will see an epic race.  Even if not we will see an epic race.  The
> Tour
> is always so.

How true.  Certainly one of the greatest sporting events in the world.

> Right
> now
> he is 11 seconds behind which is nothing.  The mountain stages will
> decide the winner.

How true.  The team time trial will be key, too (not to mention the individual
ones).  US Postal should do fairly well there.

El Scorpion

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