What Do You Expect When They Put All the Hard Stages at the End?

Kudos to Samuel Abt of the International Herald Tribune and the New York Times for having the courage to write an article entitled Stray Cows Provide High Point for Boring Tour. I've sat and watched the leaders jockey for position in the last 400 meters of each stage, fighting to stay in front of any gaps in the finishers, so they can steal a couple of seconds from one another. Every day, commentators on OLN suggest that tomorrow will be more interesting. Will it?

We learned about the death of Tyler Hamilton's dog, Tugboat, today. Granted, that dog is well known in the cycling community. But he's had more mentions on OLN during this Tour than the entire RAGT cycling team. Perhaps this is the best indication that there is time to fill during the evening broadcasts.

I guess I'm wondering what will happen if today's stage to La Mongie is effectively neutralized by the "Tour Heads of State", as the last few have been? Saturday's stage to Plateau de Beille is supposed to be harder and more definitive. Unfortunately we may have to wait until after the second rest day before we will see anything truly riveting.