Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Beginning a New Week: Vuelta a España Edition

A new week and...count 'em...two new bicycle races began over my weekend. The Vuelta a España, and The US Pro Cycling Challenge up in Colorado. The Vuelta began on Saturday, and runs for three weeks, like the Tour de France and the Giro d' Italia. The US Pro CC kicked off Monday, and lasts a week. Both races have good television coverage in the States as well as World-Wide. The US Pro CC is broadcast to 161 countries, the Vuelta a España is seen in even more.

On Monday, I was reminded of the Favorite Motto (read: Prime Directive) of my old grooming boss from my rookie days. Now my memory fades when it comes to the exact title of the Boss' Rule..."The Rule Of Six" or "The Rule Of Six 'P's" are my best I say, it has been 30 years! The Rule:

"Poor Prior Planning makes for Piss-Poor Performance"

I'm calling The Rule on NBC Sports...The 6P Rule for short...well, for succinct...and this reminds me of KirkVallus and his whippet, Rose.

When we were introduced (the dog and yours truly) KV said: "TruckeeDave, this is Rose...or Rosy for short"...I didn't say my brain was knocked slightly askance until I processed the words for a minute...OK...not shorter...twice the syllables...OK...HiHo... 

But I digress...(I've always wanted to say that...rimshot!...I'm in town all week, folks...rimshot again!) OK, OK! Here's the NBC 6P Rule violation...

NBC Sports is televising the Vuelta a España on their CableSports channel Universal Sports. They join the race LIVE from Spain every morning (North American time) for the last two hours of each stage daily, then replay the show several times throughout the day.

NBC Sports also broadcasts the US Pro Challenge LIVE on their Versus Network every day starting at 1PM PDT...right when I prefer to watch the Vuelta replay! The magic of DVRs is not lost on me, but as I've been saying since I got my first Betamax, "The one thing they don't tell you when they're selling you the machine is: You have to have the time to watch what you record" Those recorded programs pile up quick!

NBC Sports has the two races on at the same time at 1PM and 8PM, and there's a 5PM Vuelta Showing. Further complicating my viewing pleasure planning is the Giants''s stretch-run time in baseball's Big Leagues. There's 34 games left for the Giants to regain the lead in their division. As I write, the first pitch of tonight's game is a half an hour away, with the Giants one game behind the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Amazingly, the Giants looked like their old selves, coming from behind in the 8th to tie it up, only to lose it in the ninth. Two games back now...On the bright side, no new injuries.

On the roads of Colorado, quite the picturesque vistas, I didn't get to see the finish at Crested Butte yet.

Over in Spain, the riders were suffering...and they looked like it. Spain's Mediterranean Coast reminds me of Baja, sans cacti. Temps in the 90s...humidity too. Team CorduroyPlanet's sprinter Manxman Mark Cavendish abandoned today citing heat and fatigue.

Today's finish was at Sierra Nevada, the Vuelta's first mountaintop finish of six. The trees on the way up the mountain looked pretty scrubby compared to my Sierra Nevada's trees...

I'll be seeing and smelling those High Sierra conifers beginning mañana! I'm fleeing the little Heat Wave for a few days...maybe I'll touch a Lincoln Highway concrete milepost along my way

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