Musings on 2012 Tour de France Contenders on a Calm Summer Morning (Free Verse Friday)

06.29.2012 | 9:04 am

201206290735.jpgA Note from Fatty: The Utah Tour de Donut is July 7: a week from tomorrow. This is one of my favorite events of the year, for a lot of reasons. First, because it plays to my strengths: riding bikes and eating donuts. Check out my race writeups from 2010 and 2011 to see what I mean.

Second, because it is put on by the American Fork Rotary Club, which seems to have adopted me as their mascot or something (no, I’m not a member of the Rotary Club). Last year, for example, they used the proceeds of this fundraiser to buy a blanket warmer for the cancer center at the hospital Susan went to for treatment.

This year, they’re using the proceeds to go toward World Bicycle Relief, as well as to build a new trail connecting Lambert Park with Corner Canyon.

Both of these causes are awesome.

So. If you’re local, like bicycles, like to eat, like silliness, like helping kids in Zambia have a shot at a better life, and like seeing more local trails, why don’t you come race the Tour de Donut?

It’s insane. And wonderful. You’ll have a great time, and you’ll be doing good things, both locally and far away.

Click here to register now.

Musings on 2012 Tour de France Contenders on a Calm Summer Morning

The 2012 Tour de France approaches
What shall I think?
For whom shall I cheer?
How can I not know how each stage ends
Afore — perchance — I get to see it myself?

Bradley Wiggins is the toast of the Tour
He is expected to win by all and sundry
Phil and Paul have cried tears of joy
Over the prospect of the rapture
They predict and pray for

Alone in his hotel room
Cadel Evans sulks and frets
“I am the reigning champion!”
He confides to his pillow
“Perhaps I have given cause for concern”
“Perhaps I have not been at my best”
“But should I be truly relegated to ‘also appearing’ status?”

Not far away
And yet far far away
Another man is lonely
For he misses his brother
“How shall I race without my brother?”
He wonders aloud
To all and sundry
Other racers look on
“You know, the rest of us race without siblings all the time.”

Chris Horner looks on
Amused and bemused
And enigmatic as hell
All simultaneously
Though he would never use those words
He had been out
And now he is in
Almost as if by magic
And, magically, leading the team
The pile of Snickers wrappers accumulates
That dude’s going to have to watch his weight when he retires

By way of contrast
Levi Leipheimer
Eats a teaspoon of rice
Specially prepared
And seasoned just so
“100ish kilometers of time trials sounds good”
He says calmly, even as his heart is about to burst
“Real good.”
Then he punches a passerby in the throat
Just because he can

Oh, let us not forget
Vincenzo Nibali
Who has done magnificently
At shooting himself in the foot
For why would a team
Put their heart and soul
Behind a rider who is halfway out the door
When they could instead
Get behind a young man named Sagan
Who has had some modest success in the sprints
As of late  

But what of the others?
For are there not others with prospects?
With hopes?
With dreams?
Like Sánchez?
No, I’m sorry, he has no chance
For he is on Euskaltel-Euskadi
And is therefore tradition-bound to do well on one stage   
And then discombobulate

And what of Denis Menchov?
Nobody seems to talk about him
Which seems to suit him just fine
Because really
Why would a proven rider
With multiple Grand Tour victories
And a gift for the Time Trial
On a Time Trial-heavy course
be considered a Tour favorite?
Nothing to see here
Move along
Move along

Thank you


  1. Comment by Drew | 06.29.2012 | 9:12 am

    This is a startling career move for Andrew Wiggins.

    Wow. Just wow. I cannot believe I did that. Just goes to show what happens when one reads too much sci-fi. Fixed. And thank you. – FC

  2. Comment by davidh,marin | 06.29.2012 | 9:15 am

    I think you SHOULD join the Rotary! You’d look GREAT driving one of those little cars in the parade in your little red hat!

    Um, that’s the Shriners. – FC

  3. Comment by andy | 06.29.2012 | 9:17 am

    Been reading Enders Game?

    Yeah. I’m such a dope. – FC

  4. Comment by davidh,marin | 06.29.2012 | 9:20 am

    Me bad
    to forget the Friday rule
    of response
    let me say
    Join the Rotary
    drive the little car
    in the parade
    the red hat
    with pride
    and a

    thank you

    That’s a beautiful poem. But you’re still thinking of the Shriners. – FC

  5. Comment by davidh,marin | 06.29.2012 | 9:22 am

    I know, but imagine how you’d be noticed.

  6. Comment by TK | 06.29.2012 | 9:25 am

    As the Tour approaches
    I can’t help but wonder
    How many times
    Phil and Paul will mention Lance.
    I hope Phil forgets
    About his contractual obligations
    Because I can’t stand that guy.

    Thank you

  7. Comment by andy | 06.29.2012 | 9:30 am

    Fatty, you can’t read too much sci-fi! Especially not a book that good.

  8. Comment by Brian in VA | 06.29.2012 | 9:35 am

    The beauty of the countryside
    The celebration of the small towns
    The pain of the climbs that are “beyond category”
    The weird scoring if you’re not a cyclist
    The attacks that work, the attacks that are reeled in only kilometers from victory
    The good wine and cheeses
    The Tour de France – three of my favorite weeks of the year!
    Thank you

  9. Comment by MellowJonny | 06.29.2012 | 9:36 am

    I love the part about Levi: “hits a passerby in the face because he can.” Hilarious!

    Keep up the excellent work, Fatty.

  10. Comment by MtlDan | 06.29.2012 | 9:38 am

    What? No mention of Hesjedal?
    Does the Giro count for naught?
    Or is it just too difficult
    to slide ‘Hesjedal’ into a verse

  11. Comment by Carl | 06.29.2012 | 9:39 am

    The Tour de Donut Ohio version is on Sept 8th on the Ohio/Indiana border!

  12. Comment by Sjw503 | 06.29.2012 | 9:44 am

    And what of Cobo, the surprise of the Vuelta and Wiggins’ bane?

  13. Comment by AKChick55 | 06.29.2012 | 9:48 am

    I WISH I could be there for the Tour de Donut, except donuts make me nauseous – too much grease (thank goodness, ONE sweet food I can’t eat). Alas, it’s too expensive to fly down from Alaska. I need to be independently wealthy. Sigh. Maybe I need to start an Alaska version…

    Of course, I will be watching Chris Horner (LOVE HIM!! Platonically, like a brother – he is FUN!), but I will be keeping an even closer eye on a certain young rider named Peter Sagan. That guy is AMAZING. I am curious if he can continue his brilliant riding in France. Is there anything he can’t do? Okay, maybe climb like a pure climber, but that guy is versatile. And really cute (sorry, I’m a girl, I can’t help but notice these things). Back to Horner – I would love to see him podium, but not sure if he can given the course, but there are some good mountain stages. We shall see.

    By the way, this was your best free verse Friday yet!

  14. Comment by AKChick55 | 06.29.2012 | 9:51 am

    Oh yes, and if you happen to check the comments, the race you and the Hammer should partake of (I would be your sag wagon unless you’d let me ride with you but I’m super slow and NOT a climber, but I could train and get better) is the Fireweed 400. You could do the one way 200 mile ride as a relay to Valdez (big party there afterwards and is the race most people select) or you could do the 400 which is an out and back 24 hour affair. Or you could do the 300K tour where you overnight at a lodge. If we could get you two up here, I would turn our gear room into a place for you two to stay and be your tour guide. Not as nice as a fancy hotel, but a little more homey. :) A girl can dream!!

    More info here:

    Just think about it. :)

  15. Comment by Elizabeth | 06.29.2012 | 9:55 am

    Free Verse Friday
    A new tradition
    which I anticipate with …
    great anticipation
    The Tour de France
    An old tradition
    which I anticipate with …
    Confusion, this year
    What about the guy
    who won the Tour of California
    Is he riding?
    But mostly
    I will miss Andy

    Thank you

  16. Comment by Elizabeth | 06.29.2012 | 9:58 am

    A correction
    You mention Sagan
    He is the guy
    Good job in CA
    I’m going with Sagan
    this year

    Thank you

  17. Comment by ABQKenny | 06.29.2012 | 10:31 am

    Ender’s Game is one of the greatest sci-fi books of all time!

  18. Comment by Pat Schleck (the cyclist formerly known as MattC) | 06.29.2012 | 10:39 am

    Michael Phelps
    will win the

  19. Comment by BonzoGal | 06.29.2012 | 10:43 am

    Every morning I wake up
    and make coffee for Eric L.
    But he will not need coffee for a while
    He will be up for the next three weeks
    Up up up
    Cowbells in the dawn
    Will be my suitcase full of pain

    The only time he will be down
    Is when he sees that Bobke can’t get someone
    to ride with him

    Thank you.

  20. Comment by Tommysmo | 06.29.2012 | 11:00 am

    Le Tour arrives!
    I’m going to the mountains
    We shall camp for the flat stages
    I shall return to see the hills and TTs
    I have decided to cheer.
    For Vande Velde
    For his name speaks bicycle in another language.

  21. Comment by Rod Martin | 06.29.2012 | 11:07 am

    The French are…well French
    which speaks volumes about their
    aggravating Frenchiness,
    BUT they do put on a great race.

    Levi rules.
    Not so much because he rescues Chihuahuas
    but because he has the presence of mind,
    and dexterity,
    to punch folks in the throat as he goes by,
    at 2x their speed.

    The Tour de Donut loves Fatty – ’tis true –
    and we promise
    to not try
    and kill him
    this year
    with a minivan.

    Thank you.

  22. Comment by sdcadbiker | 06.29.2012 | 11:19 am

    Canadians can’t get no
    respect from the fat man who stuffs his face
    with donuts
    and makes fun of others who do the same but prefer

  23. Comment by Obstinate Roadie | 06.29.2012 | 12:15 pm

    Ryder Hesjedal
    in the Giro, beat them all
    ’tisn’t possible he wins in France, most say
    but that is why they have the race, eh?

  24. Comment by ScottR | 06.29.2012 | 12:19 pm

    Beautiful Levi shout out – well done, Fatty.

  25. Comment by rabidrunner | 06.29.2012 | 12:21 pm

    Free Verse Friday is my favorite for it fattens my fictive fancies!

    Thank you.

  26. Comment by Obstinate Roadie | 06.29.2012 | 12:25 pm

    Levi Leipheimer
    isn’t a bad climber
    But when Frank throws it down
    don’t expect him to still be around

  27. Comment by Miles Archer | 06.29.2012 | 12:43 pm

    Sagan has the star stuff

    thank you

    (I missed the typo – what was it?)

  28. Comment by Obstinate Roadie | 06.29.2012 | 1:00 pm

    Ever-smiling Chris Horner
    downs cheeseburgers in the corner
    Over 40, yet no retirement he’ll seek
    for his legs, why, they are just beginning to peak!

  29. Comment by kw | 06.29.2012 | 1:41 pm

    At Le Tour
    Luck collides
    with decisions made
    before they roll at Leige.
    No pistol to hold aloft,
    Fraternal bonds are broken
    while the Belgian stands aside.
    No thunder for the one down under
    but King George rides one more.
    Time runs hard against the climbers,
    attack the col or concede the jersey.
    Wiggins’ to lose?
    Or the field to win?

  30. Comment by mykill | 06.29.2012 | 4:35 pm

    so new to the sport
    i never followed the tour
    or its tourists
    but upon learning there is
    a snickers connoisseur
    old enough to be my kids’ dad
    i think i might tune in this year

    thank you

  31. Comment by Anonymous | 06.29.2012 | 4:50 pm

    Couldn’t have said it all better myself
    But many say this year is defined
    by those absent who doth not appear

    Contador tops the list, now this man
    this year, he could have had it All
    For the clock is where he pulls away from Andy
    Surely, but Contador/Wiggins TT matchup
    I’m sad I will not get to see

    Andy of course, now what if he had been
    forced to ride this year without Frank?
    Then the tables would turn, could he
    ride without a sibling??

    Achhh.. this year tis been strange
    just HOW has he managed to “Banish”
    his top three riders from his “List”

    Jakob ???
    the lad with the great hair was in
    some great form this year, and we’ll just
    never know..
    Not in the Giro
    Not in the Tour
    Not in the Vuelta
    Not til Saxo next year…

  32. Comment by Erika | 06.29.2012 | 4:53 pm

    Like Sanchez? No I’m sorry he has no

  33. Comment by Mayhemnsuz | 06.29.2012 | 6:11 pm

    Because my back
    is on the attack
    i cannot go to work

    While this is a pain
    for my bank and my brain
    instead I will get to look

    At the prologue on the telly
    with breakfast in my belly
    I think this is…fantastic

    I lost it at the end.

    Thank you

  34. Comment by Fuzz Martin | 06.29.2012 | 8:16 pm

    The Tour de France, I’d like to watch
    From my hotel room with my wife,
    It’s our anniversary, and we’re in St. Louis
    Alas, I’ll miss the time trial
    And the #ridestreak that I’d like to do
    Will start on the reclining stationary
    Here in the Westin Spa area

  35. Comment by ClydesdalePilot | 06.29.2012 | 9:21 pm

    I met the young lad once,
    one Peter Sagan
    and I thought to myself

    I will root for
    Levi Leipheimer
    when in public
    for fear of throat punches

    I think the Aussie
    who I prefer to call
    will win again

    How does one go
    creating a Tour de Donut?
    I would like one here in SoCal.

    And finally, the name we were all hoping Fatty would mention, for he is clearly the best at hitting beast mode:


    thank you.

  36. Comment by Skippy | 06.29.2012 | 10:32 pm

    The Brits will wonder why you overlooked ” King Cav ” and those down under would wish for ” Greenedge ” !
    Months ago i stuck my neck out and predicted the TDF podium would be filled with other than favourites , so Gossy for Green & Gerrans for Jaune !
    Horny is going to leave a ” snickers ” trail all the way to the podium !

  37. Comment by Nurse Betsy | 06.29.2012 | 11:04 pm

    I know he has no chance to win
    Don’t forget my boyfriend
    The eye candy of cycling.

  38. Comment by Al | 06.30.2012 | 5:47 am

    If you look.
    At the course of Le Tour,
    And squint,
    It looks a bit like a donut.
    The sort your daughter might draw
    If she is small.
    Funny then that Le Tour
    and the Utah Tour De Donut
    Since I am unable to ride in either event
    I will go out on my bike
    Early on 7 July
    So that I can sit down afterwards
    And watch Brad ride Tomblaine / La Planche des Belles Filles.
    I will wear my Team Fatty jersey
    And eat a donut.
    Or two
    To honour my friends in Utah.

    Thank you

  39. Comment by Doug | 06.30.2012 | 6:06 pm

    Pity the poor Americans
    Feel sorry for the French
    The British should be afraid, very afraid
    The Spaniards and Italians nowhere will be found
    when a Canadian Ryder puts the metal down

  40. Comment by Hamish | 07.1.2012 | 1:56 am

    Cadel, sulking? Surely you jest. Lest you want most of the population of Australia as enemies! Though I’d be happy to see Menchov and Ryder do well too.

  41. Comment by Saso | 07.1.2012 | 1:38 pm

    Good summary of doom
    no doubt
    but Gesink and Hesjedal loom
    behind a cloud

    Wiggins and Evans are the creme’
    for sure
    but Tour is long and things happen
    without a cure

    Time trials will be the key
    roulers´ wrath
    unless there´s some wild spree
    in the Circle of Death

  42. Comment by Wilfredo Wessler | 07.22.2012 | 3:25 am

    Sky principal Brailsford wants to build on Wiggins’ success

  43. Comment by Rubin | 08.17.2012 | 2:56 am

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