3.25.2012

Reset - and daily races

Sometimes you have to. I spent the day in the country house and was very busy with rural works. I had not been there since ages and noticed at the first sight something weird in our hedge: a part of it was 'short', the other one was... well... completely cut. The last time it was almost the opposite because my family decided to have the hedge cut by the gardener but my cousin stoped him in the midle of the work saying she didn't agree. She changed her mind it seems and asked him... to cut her part completely! The point is the hedge needs to be well cut now and then if not it gets weak and dies. My cousin thinks a short hedge is ugly but had to face it. As a result our hedge looks weird, even weirder than before, when our part was short and nacked and her part was hight and wild. I know: usually an hedge is ONE hedge and you have it cut all at the same level. We are a very democratic family or better an anarchic messy family where each one does what he or she wants. Nervetheless the gardener knows the hedge MUST be cut and if you don't do that at the right time you have to 'reset'.
In life it's the same. Sometimes a situation goes out your control and the only thing you can do is to reset, to stop and to make a new start. Often it looks as ugly as a nacked hedge but give it a little time and it will sprout again. That need patience. But how nice those light green leaves are! the wil cover all the branches very soon and you will be forced to admit it's more beautiful than before. I am in this age of my life: I messed up ok but now it's over and the new situation is definitely better. I'm enjoying it. Morever I'm enjoying the fact I have the power to control it. No more wild hedges here, be sure. 
My uncle died two years ago and now I - with my brother - am the owner of this place: a large villa with garden and wood. Step by step I'm making it confortable again after years of neglect. After a long morning of work and a good lunch I turned the tv on and watched Gent-Wevelgem in total peace. Meanwhile my son and my ex were destrying a piece of my childhood: a small wooden house builded by my uncle when I was two years old. I used to play in it since when I was ten or so. Inside there were my childish drawing on the walls and I got moved when my son came bringing a board with an heart and two letters I and E: I for Ilaria, E for Enrico, my first love! He's married now and has got two little daughters. That small house was more than 30 years old and in very bad conditions: it made no sense to keep it longer. Sad in one way, exciting in another one because... life goes on, you are no more a child and... your future is a present, you don't have to wait anymore.
Peter Sagan is one of those riders whose career starts very early and you often judge too strictly. He lost Gent-Wevelgem today, he lost it at the sprint after a long day in the right position and no mistakes. Taylor Phinney is also a greatly talented guy but luckier because he is allowed to mature without that pressure. He was in the race but we didn't see him. That's ok. He's learning his lessons. About Sagan you can say what Hegel used to say about Schelling: he's doing his apprenticeship in public. That's harder.
Yesterday stage of the Volta a Catalunya was all and just in Sanchez's move, today race amost all in Cancellara's attack: there was a brocken break, two men in front (Lundt and Izaguirre) and a few dropped. The Berna locomotive attacked on the last 'muer' - Sagan on his wheel - reached the small group and led it powerfully disintegrating the duo advantage. But the most important thing was that Cavendish couldn't follow, couldn't even stay with the chassing group of Boonen. Dropped, cut away from the fight for the final sprint, left behinde by his team that didn't stop Knees and Boasson Hagen to help him, the Manxman lost another important chance to show the rainbow jersey on a finish line. 
Cancellara's move was decisive but not victorious. His group caught the break but was caught as well. Bennati was amongh the strongest riders in the peloton but also amongh the most unlucky ones: prepared Cancellara's attack, acted as a stoper, came back to the front with Boonen and all the sprint contender - Cav excluded - but got a flat in the true last kms! Tony Gallopin gave him his wheel, he managed to reach again the front group already launched toward the line and was 6th anyway: chapeau! Cancellara 13th: how generous! how strong! I'm looking forward to Flanders and Roubaix!
Tom Boonen already reset and after two anonymous - nacked - years is blooming again, more beautiful and stronger than ever. I guess he found a balance in his private life and a new confidence in his job. Merckx said: "He isn't the same Boonen anymore" meaning "He isn't GOOD anymore". He was wrong: the cut hedge just needed its time. I would be glad to say the same about Matti Breschel: on the podium here, in front very often this year and in spite his team doesn't look very supportive. Keep on!
Oscar Freire...well... you can't really say he ever stopped! and probably he has never got the need to reset anything: perfect control of the race, - almost - always where he has to be, maybe - sometimes! - he doesn't win... but he almost always could! A resetting sit should be a good idea for Sky instead: they left Cavendish behinde playing the card of Boasson Hagen who was with knees in the first group but the finish wasn't good for him and in fact he was 5th. Not enought to justify the dismissing of Cav. Because in that finish Cav was the best card you could have and with an help by Knees and Boasson Hagen he could have come back.
Talking about 'reset' you can't avoid to name Filippo Pozzato: he was always in front today and once again this year got a very good result - 9th. He's determined and serious: I'm persuaded he can do very well in the next races and even win. His team also is surprisingly strong. Talking about teams: Sky and GreenEdge tryed to control the race but failed:  Goss 12th,  Boasson Hagen 5th, Cavendish dropped. Not bad results in general but those teams worked to achieve a victory here. GreenEdge at least got it in Volta a Catalunya by Albasini: bravo!
Talking about victories: where is BMC? not in the top 20 of Gent-Wevelgem. Cadel Evans won the GC (and a stage) in Criterium International thought. - BDW another race to reset after Volta a Catalunya for RSNT (where was Frank Schleck? 30th at 4.07) Monfort 6th doesn't look enought to me. - Gilbert is still inconsistent, we saw Ballan but not at the sprint and Van Avermeat... crashed just before the line. RESET!
Gent-Wevelgem
Results
1 Tom Boonen (Bel) Omega Pharma-Quickstep 5:32:44
2 Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Cannondale
3 Matti Breschel (Den) Rabobank Cycling Team
4 Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Katusha Team
5 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling
6 Daniele Bennati (Ita) Radioshack-Nissan
7 Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
8 Steve Chainel (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat
9 Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle Italia
10 Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Movistar Team
11 Johan Vansummeren (Bel) Garmin-Cervelo
12 Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) GreenEdge Cycling Team
13 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Radioshack-Nissan
14 Christian Knees (Ger) Sky Procycling 0:00:03
15 Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 0:00:04
16 Daniel Oss (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
17 Anders Lund (Den) Team Saxo Bank
18 Maarten Wynants (Bel) Rabobank Cycling Team 0:00:06
19 Vladimir Isaichev (Rus) Katusha Team
20 Oscar Gatto (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle Italia 0:00:08
Volta a Catalunya
Stage
1 Julien Simon (Fra) Saur - Sojasun 2:47:02
2 Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Pro Team Astana
3 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre - ISD
4 Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky Procycling
5 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Pro Team Astana
6 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team
7 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team
8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
9 Maciej Paterski (Pol) Liquigas-Cannondale
10 Denis Menchov (Rus) Katusha Team
Final GC
1 Michael Albasini (Swi) GreenEdge Cycling Team 24:15:45
2 Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi 0:01:30
3 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:01:32
4 Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin-Barracuda
5 Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky Procycling
6 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre - ISD
7 Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Pro Team Astana
8 Matteo Carrara (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
9 Dario Cataldo (Ita) Omega Pharma - QuickStep
10 Sergio Pardilla Belllón (Spa) Movistar Team
Criterium International
1 Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 7:03:43  
2 Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat 0:00:08  
3 Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky Procycling    
4 Lars Petter Nordhaug (Nor) Sky Procycling 0:00:09  
5 Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) AG2R La Mondiale    
6 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Radioshack-Nissan 0:00:23  
7 Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi 0:00:38  
8 Thomas Lövkvist (Swe) Sky Procycling 0:00:42  
9 Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:47  
10 Christophe Riblon (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:11  
11 Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:19  
12 Maxime Bouet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:01:21  
13 Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Garmin-Cervelo 0:01:28  
14 Julien El Fares (Fra) Team Type 1 - Sanofi    
15 Cyril Gautier (Fra) Team Europcar 0:01:29  









































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