Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Good Year To Be Injured

It's interesting to see cycling getting so much press in early January. In normal years, I'd guess that I echo the average cyclist when I say that my interest in the Tour Down Under is mainly to take a virtual vacation to somewhere warm. It's far too early to gauge how a rider is going to go based on their performance, so fan interest is mainly to scout for up and coming talent. This race is huge for young riders who are trying to make the roster for big races in Europe later that season. The racing is always first rate but, mainly, I enjoy watching riders race with their jerseys open when 15 degrees F outside at home.

This year is different. With the return of the Texan the world has cast its eyes on Australia. As a cycling fan, it's all good. Now instead of scrapping for the odd highlight we can choose from a cornucopia of media options. Apparently, Versus is covering the race live on TV. I don't have TV, so I look to cyclingfans.com. This web site has become invaluable. They scavenge the wires for various feeds all season long. If you're open to broadcasts in various languages, you never need miss a race. For the TdU, they have a handful of different length options for every stage. Here's a 7 minute recap (about perfect for a sprint stage) of stage one.

Stage 1 TdU

Another good option is cycling.tv. They have free content and various packages you can buy. Two years ago this site was seriously fledging, covering pro races when possible but also streaming homemade training videos and the like. Now they've linked with Versus and other networks so that it's like a television network dedicated to cycling. For the cost of around a month of cable you can watch almost every important race on the calendar.

So thanks, Lance. At least I picked a good year to get injured.

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