Intrigue, subterfuge, and just plain stupidity reared their ugly noggins this past week. Let’s get right to it, shall we?
Worst Five Things of the Week
While the press reported on this ad nauseam and Vaughters took to the twitterverse to explain his rationale, this still smacks of an ill-conceived and ill-timed decision. It came on the heels of a rather extravagant gala held in a Boulder theatre with the Garmin faithful and the cycling media in attendance. The interesting bit is the fact that both the women’s and the U-23 teams were not in attendance. Now I’ve been known to both laud and also criticize Mr. Vaughters, but this is one place where I cannot defend his actions. While paying lip service to ignored and underfunded parts of his organization, and through his actions openly showing his firm support of the WorldTour men’s team, Vaughters demonstrates that he is truly putting his eggs in one basket. Sometimes I wish JV would return to his roots and recall why he started the team oh so many moons ago, before he ended up mucking about in the political quagmire. Of course, I’m not at all the pot calling the kettle black.
Good Lord Almighty. First he was seriously hurt. Then he retired. Then he unretired. Then he threw a teammate under the bus to ensure a team spot when he unretired. Then he stated he was unhappy with management. Then he said that he wanted to be management. Then he said he wanted to ride. Then he said he wanted to ride and manage at the same time. Now he wants to ride, manage Astana, and run for office. I think he’s read the Dictator’s Bible one too many times. Well, the one thing I can say is that based on his track record, he’ll fit in with the rest of us. Probably too well.
This is a treacherous path that I was forced to follow. Giving these athletes a voice is a dangerous proposition for yours truly. Pretty soon, they’ll want to actually determine rules, and maybe even organize a union. Thankfully, I did put Gilbert and Eisel on the committee to take the intelligence down a notch. Next thing you’ll know, Arndt and Vos will have them whipped up into some sort of communist fervour. Let’s hope I don’t live to regret this pivotal decision.
He wore his wedding suit. You’ve got to be kidding me. Berto, I taught you better. You’re supposed to go to Milan, see my friend Salvatore, and he’ll outfit you properly. Plus, serving platitudes like you did to the press just makes you come off needy. I remember that American skater… what’s her name? Yeah, Tonya Harding. The public got tired of her schtick real fast. Just glad I haven’t had anyone hit my knee with a lead pipe.
I’m really getting tired of the flip flopping from the RFEC. First they defend Contador, then they pretty much eject Mosquera for the remainder of his career. Now they’ve decided to FINALLY adopt the WADA code for anti-doping. At least I’m consistently awful, short-sighted, insulting, and myopic. The least they can do is continue the same sort of flag waving on behalf of their riders. I’m also a little disappointed they aren’t fighting, if only because it’s an Olympic year and we’ll be flush with cash-cash.
Best Five Things of the Week
Really says something about those cycling teams struggling to find partners. Never mind that the gent who signed the deal on behalf of the BMW dealer had the last name of Nygaard. No relation. Nope. Never.
My hats off to Verbruggen who put together an outstanding deal with Samsung and that guy Lagardere who wanted to try to buy the ASO a little ways back. Looking forward to what SportAccord has in store for 2012 for the UCI. Stay tuned, it’s some pretty “gnarly” technology on their platforms, or however the kids these days refer to it. I’m also looking forward to Verbruggen’s deal with Panasonic for 3D TV at the Olympics. His production company has some pretty heavy income from that TV deal with the IOC. No insider trading there, eh? Wink, wink.
I have enough problems keeping track of folks on my own payroll, let alone monitor rogue independents who refused to acknowledge their proper place in the food chain. Maybe this will be a reminder to both Saiz and Fuentes that they got too big for their britches.
My hats off to the folks at cyclingnews.com for helping us in our plot to create subterfuge and misdirection over the breakaway league. You all can ignore the fact that Vaughters had dinner with Rumpf and Verbruggen in January 2010 at the Chateau d’Ouchy. You can ignore the fact that Vaughters and Rumpf spent quality time together in October. Nevermind that the UCI president and Vaughters rode around in the Garmin team car at that Colorado race a week after the “World Series of Cycling” domain was registered. And that’s just the publicly divulged contact. Don’t bother to ask who leaked the document to the UCI. Just keep on thinking that we’re waging a battle with the breakaway league folks, and not trying to extract ourselves out of a very bad deal with the ASO, because we are all extremely happy with our dealings with *ahem* the ASO.
This story warmed my jaded heart. I actually wept. Can you say “poster child for women’s cycling?” Loving this development, and kudos to my old friend Coeman for recognizing the PR opportunity. Plus she’s a really, really nice lady.