Not sure if anybody noticed, but the Tour De France is going on. What a mess of a sport cycling has become – the NHL thinks they are handling things poorly. Nobody can seem to figure out how to test for steroids, how many times cyclists should be tested, how to keep tests clean … sometimes it seems like Major League Baseball is following the policy of professional cycling.
I apologize first of all, because I have no idea if there is a “league” for professional cycling – the sport just doesn’t interest me. I mean, sure, I got caught up in the Lance Armstrong phenomena every summer at this time for the past bunch of years, and yeah, I was excited when Landis won last year, especially since he’s sort of a local guy. But the circus that followed this, and continues almost one year later, is just ridiculous. It seems like every year, we hear about some sort of doping scandal in cycling.
Here’s the thing, when there are no U.S. favorites in the Tour De France, nobody really cares about cycling (or at least the masses don’t). Add this big controversy/scandal to the mix, and this sport is in real danger of reaching WNBA status, if it hasn’t already. And, I’m not trying to belittle what these guys do. Just reading about the Tour De France makes me exhausted – one must be in the best possible physical condition to even finish this course.
And with professional athletes having this huge competitive streak in them, some may look for some sort of advantage. I know, this probably happens in every sport … but at least the four major ones are INTERESTING. I tried watching some of the Tour De France on Versus (awful station, by the way), and after 30 seconds, I began sensing that this was a waste, and I could find many better ways to spend my time.
So, with that said, what do you guys think about the Tour De France? Has this event reached the point where it will never again be popular in the U.S.? Are many of the problems related to it being held in France and run by the French?