Jacque Anquetil's 1962 Tour de France Winning Bike

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Chains of Fools

Three fools, chronologically:

Fool Number 1: Andy Schleck lost the 2010 Tour de France when he messed up a shift and his chain came off came off during a crucial mountain stage.  He lost 39 seconds putting the chain back on the chainring, losing the yellow jersey in the process.  His losing margin in the race after 21 stages?  39 seconds.  Today, Andy Schleck repeated the feat when he lost the yellow jersey in the 2011 Tour, when Cadel Evans absolutely trounced him in Stage 20 time trial.

Fool Number 2: Today, I, Vlad Luskin, lost a chainring bolt on his Colnago, but didn't realize it and kept riding.  The chainring flexed inordinately, damaging the chain and leading to the chain's breaking while I climbed Pinehurst today.  I walked a quarter mile up the hill in cycling shoes, pushing the chainless bike along.  Chain breakage ended my 35-mile ride prematurely.

Fool Number 3: Jessica picked me and brought me home.  Later in the afternoon, I turned on the TV, looking for Tour coverage, but VS TV had a cross-country motorcycle race.  At the precise point when I turned on the TV, the screen showed a motorcyclist standing by the side of a muddy trail.  As the camera followed him neared, the announcer said that he thought the rider had broken his chain and in a few seconds, we saw a broken chain dangling in the rider's hand!



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