The remaining four-rider American contingent at the Tour de France — Brent Bookwalter and Tejay van Garderen of BMC, and Tom Danielson and Andrew Talansky of Garmin-Sharp have all had their difficulties.
That’s the Tour. Van Garderen and Danielson have both finished in the top-10 overall, but won’t get anywhere close this year.
Bookwalter has been the team rider he was supposed to be and Talansky showed himself well in stage 14 and finished third — the first podium finish for a U.S. rider in the 100th Tour de France. Van Garderen pedaled well in the stage, too.
The point: It hasn’t been a strong year for U.S. riders, but having realized it, the riders haven’t “bagged” it. So kudos to the foursome for seeking opportunities to still showcase themselves in the team mix and for stage glory.
Here are five random thoughts from he Tour de France with the Mighty Mont Ventoux on the nearby horizon:
5. Anyone who says cycling in boring to watch, so go to YouTube or some video review site and a revisit stage 13 of this year’s race. It was cycling at its finest.
4. Years ago, it took me awhile to perfect the spelling of the name Djamolidine Abdoujaparov without hesitating. The Uzbekistan rider was, simply described, a badass sprinter. But has anyone noticed who’s current leading the Tour of Qinghai Lake currently being in obscurity during the Tour de France, That would be Pourseyedigolakhour Mirsamad. And Yevgeniy Nepomnyachshiy is in second place.
3. It seems in his record-setting 17th participation, Stuart O’Grady is experiencing his most subdued Tour de France. After the stage 4 TTT effort for ORICA-GreenEdge where has he gone?
2. Six of the 14 stages so far in the Tour de France have been won by German riders. As friend Alex pointed out, wondering if German television networks regret their decisions not to broadcast the event.
1. Andrew Talansky seems poised beyond his years, despite his sprint mistake in stage 14.