Even in a winter of despair and cynicism,hope springs eternal. I am starting to anticipate and look forward to the 2007 cycling season. Hours on the trainer staring at 06 races help questions pop up.....
1. Will Ballan have a podium finish in a spring classic? Will Flecha?
2. Will Discovery turn into the new Telekom with too many chiefs and not enough indians? On paper the team does not look like 7 super domestques and a leader. It looks like they could have a telekom worthy nightmare of a season. Are Lepheimer, Popovych, and Danielson be the motors that Beltran and Azevado where? Never mind Barry or Eki?
3. Can Hincapie ever win Flanders or Roubaix? Are Gusev and Devolder enough to keep him up front? Will he catch a break some year?
4. Will there be a Bettini vs Boonen soap opera with Bettin acting like Bartoli in a rerun of the Bartoli/Bettini feud? Will the Belgian vs Italian divide resurface for lefevere?
5. Will VDB ride any races for Aqua Sapone?
6. What country will have the next drug scandal -I mean coordinated police raid situation (france, belgium, italy, and spain have been hit) who is left germany? usa? holland?
7. The curse of the giro climber. There is always a young climber in the Giro who jumps up the GC and has all sorts of hope pinned on him. He usually jumps to a bigger team as a GC guy and cracks under the pressure. who will it be this year?
8. Can Valverde finish a tour? Can Mayo?
9 Can DeLuca come back as the "killer" after squandering a year chasing the GC?
10. How does one guy seem to dominate the ardennes classics? (rebellin, deluca, valverde) and can someone do it again?
11. Can Pettachi's reinforced 2.5k lead out train get him to the top step of the podium this year? What will he punch?