It’s funny how unhappy the teams were to see the goths on the train to Kunming. They haven’t made any friends, and Kent used the strategy to lie to the other teams about why they were so late. They did so because of the double U-Turn that was on this leg of the race. After it was used, by the goths on the cheerleaders, and by the cheerleaders on the basketball players, they came clean. I was surprised that Jaime couldn’t pull it together and eliminated her team from the race.
Ron is definitely annoying. He’s abusive at times and wastes a lot of time. He’s always stopping to get something to eat and it’s driving his daughter mad. That wasn’t the worst meltdown though, it was the goths who got totally lost in Tokyo. I found it amazing how long it took them to get to the airport. They had been driving all night and day and yet they still couldn’t find the airport. They didn’t even stop to ask directions. Anyway, no teams were eliminated and they are still racing at the end of this leg.
It was time to trim off some fat. Mel/Mike have been having trouble since the beginning of the race and now they face some unsurmountable tasks. They almost freeze to death in a mud pit and have to recuperate in an ambulance afterward. Jaime/Cara’s bitchiness and pushiness gets them a whole lot of problems. They get really lost and arrive last at the Roadblock. It looks like next week, Ron is going to have a meltdown.
Ah, marathons. It seems that robots are now taking up the task of running them for us. The winner of the first robot marathon is a small robot called Robovie-PC.
Read more @ Technabob
It’s time for a ‘best of’ series of the Amazing Race. This time, a lot of teams from the most recent Amazing Race editions are racing once again. I’m happy to see Margie/Luke racing again, with some of the other players. I don’t really like Ron. He’s somewhat of an ass to his daughter Christina and he tried to do the same to Mallory, but she just let him eat her dust. Amanda/Kris didn’t manage to catch up, but they were close. It looks like next week, the cheerleaders will hit some dude in Japan.
This will be the first mountain finish for this year’s tour. This stage includes 2 category 1 climbs. There is one to finish off the stage, so this will be a great stage. No bunch sprint finish this time around and the sprinters will be eating dust.
In the beginning of the stage, a rider from Footon Cervetto crashed, which took down Jerome Pineau, the leader in the KOM competition. He came back up. Lance Armstrong crashed twice before hitting the mountains.
I was desperate to watch the latest stages of the TdF. My usual sources had dried up, and I don’t have a TV. Luckily, something panned out and I have been watching the full Versus broadcast of the Tour. I’d prefer watching them on ITV, but beggars can’t be choosers. Anyway, Phil Liggett is on Versus now, so it’s almost like ITV. The graphics on Versus really suck though. They are very ugly to watch and uninformative. I also don’t appreciate all of the sponsors in prominence. But, at least I get to watch the Tour.
The prologue was in full swing and Fabian Cancellara won easily enough. Spartacus didn’t deceive and had the yellow jersey. What was surprising was that Wiggo was nowhere to be seen. He placed really bad. The same goes for Andy Schleck, who was almost a minute behind Fabian Cancellara. Lance Armstrong was 4th and Contador 7th.
In the first stage, there were quite a few spills towards the end of the stage. There was a break out and it lasted quite a while, but the peloton finally caught up with them with a few klicks to go. It was sad really, because they had expended a lot of energy for nothing. The stage had started out from Rotterdam and ended in Bruxelles. All of the riders, including the sprinters, were extremely jerky towards the end of the stage. Everyone was jockeying for position. There was a hairpin turn that Cavendish and Freire completely missed, with a bunch of other sprinters. They crashed out and had to limp over the finish line. This wasn’t all. There was another crash about 800 m before the finish line. This one involved Cancellara and completely blocked the racers from finishing.
This left Farrar in contention for the final sprint, but an AG2R La Mondiale racer bumped into him and crashed. His bike was caught on Farrar’s rear derailleur, which broke off. This left Alessandro Petacchi to finish the stage first and take on the green jersey. Cancellara retained the yellow jersey. This was a completely flat stage, so no climbs and no polka dot jersey.
The second stage started in Bruxelles and ended in Spa. It was a rainy stage, filled with category 3 and 4 climbs. Chavanel and another racer broke off from the peloton. A total of 8 riders were in this breakout group. They spent most of the stage well away from the peloton. Their lead was up to 7 minutes, but hovered around 3 minutes for most of the 201km.
During one of the descents, in the rain, a rider crashed in middle of the peloton. This caused a lot of others to crash as well. It took out Andy Schleck, who looked dazed before he hopped onto the bike of one of his colleagues and tried to race back to the peloton. This split the peloton into a few different groups. The main peloton would catch up with the escaped racers, but Chavanel made his mark and raced ahead when he felt that the peloton was too close and his fellow breakout riders couldn’t bear the burden anymore.
He raced ahead all alone, oblivious to the crashes and the drama that was going on behind him. He finished almost 4 minutes ahead of the peloton. Cancellara asked the race officials to give everyone the same time and the peloton raced to the end of the stage without a sprint. The last group, which included Andy Schleck, was 10 minutes behind Chavanel, who took the yellow jersey from Cancellara.
This has been a very exciting first few days in the Tour de France. I can’t wait to see the full coverage of the 3rd stage, which includes a few miles of cobblestones. Whatever the teams and racers might say, it makes for a very exciting race.
I can’t believe it, yet it was an overwhelming victory. I still can’t put my head around it that the US voted for an African-American president. President-elect Barack Obama galvanized voters in huge turnouts tonight.
The exit polls found that a broad majority of voters considered the economy to be the most important issue facing the nation. And Mr. Obama was viewed as much more qualified than Mr.McCain to deal with that issue.
This means that the US will pull out of Iraq. The war, the exploitation, Halliburton, the POW, this will finally stop. I wonder how people from the middle east are reacting to this news.
The Cougar Ace is a 55,000 ton cargo ship packed with Mazda cars valued at $103 million that nearly flipped when the ballast tanks on either side of the ship got out of balance. If the team succeeds, they get about 10% of the cargo’s value and If not, they don’t get paid…either way, someone might die. (via kottke)