!http://www.active.com/images/newsletters/cyclist/TourdeFrance2007/images/Pensec4150x150.jpg|style=padding:10px;|align=left|src=http://www.active.com/images/newsletters/cyclist/TourdeFrance2007/images/Pensec4150x150.jpg!Well, not really a comeback, as I’m still convinced that he has lost his chances to win the Tour, but at least a new stage victory for him.
What is great about that victory is it confirms my feelings in which I think that Vinokourov is an awesome, strong cyclist. He is a fighter. He may know that the Tour is over for him, but as you can see, he still fights and gives his best. This guy rides for pride and trophies and it’s really positive for cycling!
We have also seen a fantastic Alberto Contador today. He's a very strong cyclist and I am now wondering why he hadn't been more offensive earlier on in this Tour, because he surely has all the skills to be in a yellow jersey.
However, I was expecting more fights and échappées today. I thought riders would really attack and go on to get the jersey at the end of the day, but they just did the math and rode quietly so they could stay where they are sitting now. I was kind of surprised by that. There are so many surprises in this Tour that maybe Wednesday will go completely crazy...I just don’t know.
I also feel like Rasmussen can really make it now. He could win in Paris. That was the most important thing I will actually remember from today.
As you all can read in the news, we are still talking a lot about drugs and all that in the Tour, so I’ve been thinking about all this and I thought about a new concept I wanted to share with you so we could help cycling. Feel free to give me your thoughts as they will be very helpful for me and my team.
I’m currently managing a team in Brittany which is called “Bretagne-Armor-Lux.” It’s just a third division team but I’m actually experiencing something new with them.
All the team is living in Rennes (North West of France) and all the riders train, eat, talk and learn together everyday. That’s the concept. We register teams for the Tour so let’s train teams and no longer individuals.
Currently, athletes are pretty much training with their own coaches in their home town and all that. So, if you think about it, they can easily go and meet a “doctor” without anyone noticing it. And they can also be approached more easily.
But if you build a team and get these guys on the road together
riding under the same colorsyou create a unit, a block that gets harder to penetrate. Each team member becomes responsible for their choices and you get exposed to questions, criticism and all that if you go the wrong way. The idea is to get the whole benefit that a team can bring.
You support your teammates, you exchange, you learn faster, etc.
I would love to implement something like this at a higher level, but this strategy implies a certain cost. When it costs a million to build a classic high level team for the Tour, my concept would cost maybe three to seven million. It’s a lot of money and a big risk. But when I look at all the team managers in place (some of them have been there for more than 20 years), I think it’s more of a risk to pick these guys. If they haven’t succeeded in 20 years, do you really think they will one day because they have experience?
Honestly, if we want to help cycling, we’d better try new things and concepts. So my question is: What do you think about that?
Let’s manage a cycling team as we manage a baseball team or a football team: One city, one training site and regular meetings to build a real group where leaders could really get a boost!
Ronan Pensec participated in 8 Tours, and wore the yellow jersey in the 1990. He now operates Ronan Pensec Events, an official Tour de France operator hosting VIP cycling tours for recreational cycling enthusiasts.