Controversial Canadian mayor Rob Ford has launched a protest against the Canadian Press Agency after their selection of Giro winner Ryder Hesjedal as Canadian athlete of the year, and has renewed his campaign to rid his city of “the cycling scourge.”
Ford held a press conference on the steps of Ontario Superior Court – flanked by hundreds of face-painted supporters wearing hockey jerseys – mere moments after he received word that a defamation lawsuit launched against him in 2010 was thrown out of court.
“I am absolutely ashamed of the press in this country for acknowledging this guy who runs around in lycra, racing on bikes that clog up my city’s traffic. This is a direct result of the liberalization of the press, and part of a wider campaign by NHL team owners to discredit our great nation of Canada. Bike riding is for three-year-olds in cul-de-sacs, not for grown men who should be playing football or hockey,” commented Ford.
Ford has launched a new website, saynotolycra.ca, to campaign for the removal of Hesjedal as the Lionel Conacher Male Athlete of the Year, and has assembled a legal team to explore filing another one of his famous lawsuits against the “perpetrators of Canadian defamation.”
“Look, we need to stamp out the disease of bicycles quickly, or pretty soon we won’t be able to drive our cars as fast and as recklessly as we do now. Bike paths? Also for those three-year-olds I mentioned moments ago. This whole bicycle racing movement is un-Canadian, and is bad for Torontonians. I will meet this challenge as I’ve met every other challenge, head-on with lots of yelling,” stated Ford.
Ford is currently battling his removal from office, as he violated the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, and is waging a war to remain in office, eerily reminiscent of Lance Armstrong’s legal wranglings to fight USADA over jurisdiction. When asked if his newest campaign to remove Hesjedal as Canadian Athlete of the Year was at the behest of automobile lobbyists, Ford was succinct.
“So? What’s the problem with that? So I like automobiles and I hate bikes. I’m the mayor. I make the decisions. Too bad for everyone else,” stated Ford.
Representatives of Hesjedal were quick to respond to the Ford action.
“It’s typical of someone with marginal authority in the center of the Canadian universe to think they can determine what’s best for millions of people, when in fact they’re only protecting their own selfish interests. Seems to be quite a bit of that going around in Canada. Must be why Ryder chooses to hang out with us in Maui,” commented official Hesjedal spokesperson “Shirtless” Laird Hamilton.
Canadian sports pundits were mixed on the move by Ford.
“Ford seems to forget a figure skater was the top male athlete last year, and they sometimes wear lycra. Really, I just think Ford’s upset because the Leafs are on strike, and he couldn’t gloat over the Argonaut Grey Cup victory because he was dealing with being removed from office. I’m quite pleased Hesjedal is the top male athlete. He’s been through some hard times at the hands of Canadian cycling politicos. Go Eskimos!” commented former professional cyclist Alex Stieda.
Ford fanboy Don Cherry was less supportive of Hesjedal.
“Cyclists are pansies. Make the Tour a full contact sport with riders being bodychecked into those traffic islands and then they’ll be deserving winners. I’m more interested in watching Barry Melrose talking about the hockey strike than paying attention to that sport,” commented Cherry.
Ford’s next moves on the Hesjedal front won’t be coming until after January 7th, when he’ll know if he is officially removed from office as mayor of Toronto.