Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pro Cycling 2011: Things I’ll Be Listening For by our guest @dwuori

We asked and he said yes, so here is our Guest Blogger Dan Wuori (For more follow @dwuori on Twitter):

Last week the gang at Handlebar Mustache weighed in on the things they’ll be watching in pro cycling during the year to come. Now I love to watch cycling, but for me listening is at least half the fun – especially when the legendary Phil Liggett is on the mic. And if you ride yourself, I’d be willing to bet you’ve had Liggett provide some imaginary commentary along the way.

I’m not the world’s strongest cyclist (I’m a solid Cat. 7), so my own “inner Phil” is often forced to modify his “Liggettisms” to better fit my performance. For example:

“He’s going to have to dig deep if he wants to bridge this gap. Too bad his suitcase of courage got lost at LaGuardia and didn’t make the connecting flight.”
 “He’s an absolute beast of a man. And by beast I mean a big one, like a rhino or something! He could really stand to lose a couple of pounds, don’t you think Paul?”

Come to think of it, my inner Phil is a very nasty man…nothing like the actual Mr. Liggett. But I digress.

Anyway, 2011 promises a whole new batch of Liggettisms and since I’ve become skilled at putting words into his mouth, I thought I might share a few phrases I think will come rolling off Phil’s silver tongue during the year ahead. (Note: For best results, read these aloud in your own Liggett voice. You know you have one.) 

Liggettisms 2011: An HBStache Sneak Peek

10. “There’s a rider off the front wearing the jersey of Team Sky…or is that Garmin-Cervelo? No, no… wait… that may be the nearly identical jersey of Leopard-Trek. We’ll just have to wait ‘til the finish and hope he’s carrying some form of photo identification.”

9. “Pulling hard is Jens Voigt – a man who uses embrocation only to prevent harm to his bike saddle.”

8. “Yes, I know it’s not really pronounced ‘Team Leaky Gas.’ What’s your point, Paul?”

7. “It’s been an unforgettable day here in the Alps…perhaps second only to the day I drove Marco Pantani to the mall to get his ears pierced.”

6. “Oooh, that was a nasty crash! Well, so much for Cav’s dental work.”

5. “Yes, you could say that Riis, Nygaard and Brailsford have all cultivated a certain look. No Larry or Moe here, Paul.”

4. “And there’s the sprinter Robbie McEwen. He began his career in purple – playing the role of ‘Jeff’ in The Wiggles - but is now happy to be wearing the colors of Team Radio Shack.”

3. “For a man who spent the off season motor pacing behind a goat, Alexander Vinokourov looks surprisingly strong.”

2. “Say what you will about Brad Wiggins. He says he spent much of 2010 with his head up his own backside, but will you look at what it’s done for his time trial position?”

1. “Alberto Contador is the Tour de France champion yet again. It appeared for a time that his hopes might be dashed, but that was before WikiLeaks released the name of the cow’s asthma doctor.”

Happy 2011 everyone…and Phil, if you’re reading, take it easy on me.