If I’d be a proper Dutchman, I’d follow all matches of the Dutch soccer team and of the skating championships. My sportive exertions instead consist of:
Learning medieval swordfighting myself
Watching the Dutch soccer team on television at European and World championchips and not during all the other matches.
Watching the Tour de France cycling game. And since about one year, much of the other cycling matches.
Especially the Tour the France has had my attention for many years. For some reason I like it. It is a sport in which you have to invest some time to get to know the riders and the commentators to really appreciate it all. One good thing is that they manage(d) to kick a lot of the doping guys out of the games in the last few years. That’s really for the better. And, in my opinion, the sports in which they’ve never had doping accidents are simply the sports in which they haven’t payed a lot of attention to it. There are quite some sports that are only doping-riddled during the olympics because there are no checks otherwise.
Since about a year I’ve started to follow the achievements (via the internet and email) of the Dutch #1 cycling team: rabobank. Following such a team closely, so not just during the one great event every year, really helps you in appreciating the work they put in.
This day’s final of the Giro d’Italia (one of the three big rounds every year) was spectacular. Imagine Rabo’s top man, Menchov, being in front some half a minute of the number two man. Menchov is the better time trial person. The last leg is a time trial. But the number two, de Luca, is an Italian and will give everything he can. Menchov will simply win, provided he doesn’t fall.
AND FALL HE DOES: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZBUJkfgbG0. Ouch. But the mechanic in the car gave him a new bike in record time and Menchov went on to win the Giro with a 40-second margin. Ooffffff :-)
This is the first time that I really follow a big cycling course that my favourite team’s top rider really wins. Nice for a change. I’m looking forward to this year’s Tour de France. Lots of nice riders that can take on each other. Only problem: I’m off on vacation during the last 5 days… And there are going to be 1 or 2 days when I’ll have to schedule a day at home (or a day off) in order not to miss a crucial mountain stage. Most of them are in the weekends, though :-)
Hurray for Menchov! And nice to see such an undercooled Russian thaw and scream and shout and celebrate after passing the finish line :-)[
My name is Reinout van Rees and I work a lot with Python (programming language) and Django (website framework). I live in The Netherlands and I'm happily married to Annie van Rees-Kooiman.
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