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July 08, 2004

How will U.S. sportscasters handle it?

I'm just curious, if anyone heard their local sportscaster give results from today's stage, how they handled it.

In the 10 seconds that they're alloted for "minor sports", it's going to be very hard to explain that 1) Armstrong didn't have any interest in protecting the yellow jersey ("What, doesn't he want to win?"), and 2) How yesterday's TTT was a resounding victory for Postal when they beat the other teams by a minute (not all the local newscasts bothered with the adjusted times), but today's 12-minute "loss" isn't a thrashing.

Love to see comments on what you see or hear.

Posted by Frank Steele on July 8, 2004 in Television | Permalink


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I don't know how my local news is supposed to get it when I, as a fan of the sport, don't get it. And to answer your question, my local news didn't cover the event at all.

Posted by: john at Jul 8, 2004 10:06:19 PM

Yeah, could someone explain that to me too?

Posted by: Scott at Jul 8, 2004 10:58:41 PM

I just saw the local Fox news affiliate. They gave more like 30 seconds to it and showed some footage even. it wasn't bad. They led off with: 'Lance Armstrong gave up 2 things today: the yellow leader's jersey in the Tour de france, and his chance to compete at the Olympics next month in Athens.'

No mention of yesterday's TTT or comparison with that. Just said he that he finished 24th and 9-something minutes behind the new leader, but that he was willing to give it up for now in order to rest for the mountain stages. They quoted Voelcker (sp?) as saying, when asked about Armstrong after today's stage, 'I don't think he's worrying about me.' They probably got the most mileage of showing overhead footage of the mass pileup.

Posted by: lancefan at Jul 8, 2004 10:59:15 PM

Tony Kornheiser, host of ESPN's "Pardon the Interruption" who never seems to know what the hell he's talking about no matter the sport, called it a "disappointing performance for Lance".

Posted by: Conrad at Jul 9, 2004 12:10:25 AM

Armstrong has a road map for the Tour. It likely involves competing for a stage win on 1 or more of the big climbs, and having some number of minutes or seconds on Jan Ullrich, Tyler Hamilton, and others before the last time trial.

If Armstrong were to try to carry the yellow jersey from yesterday all the way to Paris, his teammates will have to work as hard as they have so far ALL THE WAY TO PARIS. That's just not possible.

It's better for Armstrong to allow a pretender to wear the yellow jersey (i.e. Voeckler today), whose team will work to keep other breaks like today's from getting away, if he's confident that nobody in the pretender's break can hang in the mountains.

Interestingly, Samuel Abt, who knows much more than I do on bike racing, thinks Voeckler might be a threat; I'm posting a link to that story once I finish this response, so look for it up the page a bit.

Posted by: Frank at Jul 9, 2004 12:22:48 AM

No coverage on the news here in Nashville.

Posted by: mashby at Jul 9, 2004 10:42:08 AM

Thanks Frank, I think I get it now.

Posted by: Scott at Jul 9, 2004 11:31:27 AM

Our NBC affiliate (Anchorage, Alaska) showed some footage (it looked like Lance was handing a musette to another Postal rider) and said something along the lines of "Armstrong relenquished the leader's jersey, coming in 24th and falling to 9th overall." No analysis or explanation, and no mention of the Olympics withdrawal.

Posted by: David McCreath at Jul 9, 2004 12:44:58 PM

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