Ride the Puddles

2011 Tour de France Wild Card Selections Used Punitively vs UCI

Posted by bikezilla on February 20, 2011

Christian Prudhomme is ASO’s director of the Tour de France. That makes him a pretty powerful guy.

He’s just admitted that his selections for the four 2011 Tour de France wild card teams was purely a punitive action, done as revenge for UCI granting ProTeam status to just a single French squad.

Thusly does he justify his inclusion of five shitty French teams in the overall selection process.

But, says he, if only UCI will be reasonable in the future and grant shitty French teams a larger portion of the coveted 18 ProTeam licenses, all will be well and he would then be able to consider lowly Australian, Columbian and Kenyan teams, or just any ole team that’s actually deserving of an invitation.

Prudhomme is unconcerned with French worthiness to ride le Tour. They simply deserve all consideration in all venues and under all circumstances, at any time and anywhere in the world, merely for having the good sense to be born French. The fact that they suck should have no bearing on anything at all, ever.

The UCI has been slapped down by ASO in the past, until they’re little more than ASO’s bitches. I was really shocked that they had the guts to include only a single French team in the ProTeam licensing (though I don’t believe that even that one team deserves it, so even that single selection is a cop out).

You can bet that in coming years UCI will cave in on this.

But how should this year’s wild card selections be viewed?

Should le Tour drop in prestige, not only this year for permanently?

Even with such a heavy weighting to the French, they have no chance whatsoever of winning the overall. The race is still months away and already they’re relegated to chasing stage wins, and due to their mass of numbers they’re likely to pull a few off.

With nearly a full third of all the teams and riders in le Tour not really deserving the selection (due do their Frenchness, which translates directly to a perfect Suckitude Rating), and the overall field heavily watered down, does le Tour really deserve its place as the grandest of all the Grand Tours?

It IS kind of sad that the guys representing the national pride of the host country are the very guys who don’t deserve to be in the race.

May it’s time to elevate the Giro d’Italia to the #1 spot? They seem to have a lot more passion and dedication to the sport itself and they race this year is easily a match in quality for le Tour.

Maybe ASO and French arrogance tell us that it’s time for le Tour to take its rightful place behind the Giro.

If ASO wants le Tour to become a 2nd division national showcase, maybe the race should be reduced to an HC level event and eliminated as a Grand Tour entirely.

Or should we think, “this just makes things simpler for the few teams with real contenders”?

Or maybe we should we think, instead, that ASO met it’s obligation to include the 18 ProTeam squads, so the what happens with the other four is really meaningless?


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