greenjersey selects podium for olympic road race.

Can anybody beat the Spanish Armada? Well I think so because from what I have read about the course it could be too tough for Captain Friere. Always a believer that the past is a good guide I took a look at the result of last year’s Worlds at Stuttgart.

Bettini, Kolobnev s.t., Schumi s.t., Frank Schleck s.t., Cadel Evans s.t., Rebellin @0:06, Sam Sanchez @0:06

My first thought is how did I forget about Evans? Probably because last year he was just boring not a journalist threatening, camera butting, dog loving flake. Second thought is all those guys still have great form but where was Valverde in the Worlds, I can’t recall if he rode. I remember that Oscar Friere was looking set for the win when he was shelled out on the last lap. That is why I don’t see him winning on Saturday.

So my Podium pick (in no particular order) is: Schumi, Valverde & Kolobnev.



  1. richard said

    The Spannish armada was beaten due to a huge stoem that capzized them, it was not the english who did that, and by the we not only won the Giro de Italia, Dauphine Libere, Tour de France and the San Sabastian classic, we also won Wimbeldon, world no. 1 ranked player, Euro cup football, world womens mountainbike championships etc etc, but we also have the cleanest hospitals in Europe, with 1 doctor in every hospital whom does not treat patients but only tests the whole hospital with swabs taken to the lab…EVERY SINGLE DAY, BEAT THAT…SURELY THAT IS ENGLANDS MAIN PRIORITY,THAT AND THE MURDERS/DRUG ABUSE/TEENAGE PREGNANCY etc etc

    Hold on a minute Richard, don’t get carried away! greenjersey is a big fan of Spanish cycling and indeed having made his first trip to Spain in 1965 (to watch Englishman Tom Simpson win the Worlds) and of Spanish society in general. Nobody, but nobody, is a bigger fan of Oscar than me (yes I have been there for all his three rainbow jerseys) but I just can’t see him getting round that tough course in the front group.
    Valverde however could well win, that’s why I picked him for the Podium. And yes I was there in Canada in 2003 when he took silver and better yet I shook his hand and congratulated him after the race.
    As to other sports I was a big fan of Fernando Herrero for years and it was a shame that by the time he came to England he was well past his best.
    I have no intention of trying to defend the cleanliness of English hospitals and I am pleased that the Spanish have an effective system. With regard to the Spanish Armada it is good to know that God was on the side of the English and blew up a storm to ensure an English victory.

  2. manvinder said

    i think Alistair Darling is going to win Gold in the track cycling as it is a part of the sport that no one really cares about, all European riders quickly leave the track to pursue the road racing as that where the money and the prestige is in Europe, no top ten track riders in any Olympics/ world championships are that good really, otherwise the road teams would quicly snap them up and they would be winning classics and grand tour races. Its a bit like saying you have a good chance at winning gold in the peat bog snorkling world championships. No Tom Boonen or Petachi to compete against Cavendish, Freire is 32 and not as good as he used to be (plus he was concentrating on the green jersey all the time) Zabel is 38 and way past it, as is Robbie McKewan, the others are no bodies- Cavendish had no competition in the Tour

  3. Wislon said

    There is no doubt Freire and Valverde will be motivated but I cannot see the finale not involving Bettini or Rebellin. My money is therefore on Bettini. Note also there are 5 man teams in the Olympics not 9 and this must have some effect on the race dynamic wrt teamwork and race control?

    greenjersey respects Wislon’s opinion but maybe the winner will be the guy who handles smog the best. I think the course is too hard for Oscar and having watched the San Sebastian Classic I would go for Rebellin over Bettini.

  4. richard said


  5. richard said

    GOLD MEDAL !!! GOLD MEDAL !!!! FOR SPAIN, GOLD !!!! SPAIN WINS THE WHOLE SUMMER SEASON OF CYCLING GIRO DE ITALIA – DAUPHINE LIBERE – TOUR DE FRANCE – SAN SABASTIAN CLASSIC – GOLD MEDAL IN OLYMPIC ROAD RACE !!!!! SPAIN, SPAIN, SPAIN….. (track cycling has no competition, I have not heard of any of the top 20 track cyclists in any Olympic/world championships)

  6. richard said


    (no one cares about the sports Britain can do well, i.e rowing, peat bog snorkling, track cycling, tidly winks, ASBO’s, crime, punch ups and racism etc

  7. richard said

    just like god was on the side of the English when you won the 1966 world cup with that dodgy ref decision, god was not on your side when the Spanish defeated Sir Francis Drake when he tried to invade Spain in Gijon Northern Spain, your schooling concentrates when you win things, and does not teach the whole story, god was not on your side then was he….your lottery funding really needs to be spent on policing, NHS, socialhousing , cancer research etc etc, the olympics in England wont stop crime, as a nations olympic team only comprises of about 140 athletes, so with a population of 60 million plus, 140 people deluted into 60 million is nothing, and most of them would not have got into crime without sport anyway. That Stratford olympic complex should have been a massive prison, that would attratct tons of business peoples to come and do business in England and contribute to the economy, as many people world wide are scared of comming here because of the crime etc. If the olympics were held in the UK when ian.huntley was young are you telling me he would have taken up badminton and turned pro and not done any seriuos crime ? propsterous to spend much needed cash on just to keep up with the Jone’s or in this case the Bush’s and the Putin’s, Merkels…..the Darling/Brown accounting has been like some ruff family on a council estate with 56 pounds a week to spend a week but ging out and blowing it all on fags and booze, yet these morons are actually running the country.

    greenjersey is beginning to wonder about Richard, is he Spanish ot just anti-english?
    To try and address his sporting points. No I don’t think it makes sense to plough millions into minority sports chasing a medal count. Why GB does so badly at athletics I have no idea. But we had the Coe, Ovett & Cram era that Spain can only dream about so I presume GB can do it again. After all not every Brit spends all their money on fags and booze despite what Richard thinks.
    There are plenty of top sprinters eg Boonen and Zabel who decided that the road course was too tough for them (shame Freire didn’t make a realistic assessment of his own lack of ability on a hard course) so if it is as easy as Richard says why don’t they give the Madison a try and see if they can beat Cav and Wiggins?
    Finally congratulations to the Spanish team and Sanchez in particular. Sastre was superb as he worked hard in the break and still had plenty left when it was caught. Contador was OK but once again Valverde was found wanting. he has not been the same man since he stopped going to Madrid. Freire should not have been selected but how do you ignore a triple World champion.
    Lets hope Nicole Cooke can do something tomorrow!

  8. richard said

    Seb Coe is half Indian, Steve Ovett is Jewish, Chris Froome is Kenyan, Nicole Cooke is Welsh, Bradley Wiggins is Belgian, half the England football team is Jamaican or African blood, track and field are all Jamaican/African descent,etc..Joe Calzaghe is Italian, and Mark Cavendish is from Pakistan….your even trying to nick one of our goalies, Almunia.
    The cycling and sporting world don’t look much to the madison or any track racing, thats why Spain or any other notable cycling countries don’t try at being competitive, we used to have a Gold medlaist in the kilo in the nineties, I’m not even sure Freire et al even knows what exactly a ‘madison’ is? All the young kids want to do road races and Le Tour etc, and get in to that side of the sport, track racing is’nt big in Spain, where as England have a big history in track racing and time trialing, and have allways been good at it, I’m not surprised you have been getting even better at it, it was only a matter of time before that happened. Chris Boardman also inspired British kids into cycling in a big way,

    Most pros are chasing the money of the road race circuit in Europe, plus they are told by there teams what races to do ,subsequently the sponsors want as much t.v air time as posible and the madison does not provide that, as most European terestial t.v chanels only have the road races on, and very much of them too, being on all day much of the time, sometimes even the smaller races.
    I’m not too sure whom Spain could have replaced Freire with ? there are tons of good riders in the pro peleton, but I guess they just let Freire ride it as a 3 time past world champion, just on the off chance that the peleton stayed together untill the finnish line, sometimes you do get very controlled races with no attacks or braekaways be allowed by strong teams etc, although highly unikely on that course, with that hea/humidity and especially for an Olympic race.

    greenjersey is pleased to see that Richard has calmed down over the weekend although he couldn’t quite bring himself to congratulate GB on Nicole Cooke’s wonderful victory. I would just mention that both Nicole’s parents are English and that is good enough to me. I can’t argue about the ethnicity of other UK sportsmen but I am surprised to learn that Cav is from Pakistan, did Richard mis-hear Isle of Man? As I have said it would be difficult to leave Oscar at home and the selectors would certainly have had egg on their faces if they had done so and the race then ended in a bunch sprint. By the way I am still wondering about Richard’s use of colloquial english, is he a wind up merchant?

  9. richard said

    Cav from Pakistan is sarcastic, how can I congatulate Nicole Cooke on her victory if I have not had access to a computer? I have been away at the weekend.
    What do you mean by my use of colloquial English ? I could say the same about your colloquial English, of “Spanish armada’, are you a wind up merchant?
    Lest we forget La Vuelta is more important to the Spanish riders then the Olympics, unless they really think they can get a medal, Spain did not have too many options in selection, and one or two riders have told ‘Meta dos mil’ , the Spanish equivalent of cycling weekly, that they have turned down being penciled in as they know Freire would be better suited.
    How come you English don’t call other countries people with regards to a past war ? like ‘…can the African Zulus….’, in Spain they don’t call you ‘the English flotila..’.

    greenjersey is surprised that his use of the phrase Spanish Armada for the super-strong Spanish team caused such offence. Would it ne tasteless for an englishman to describe a strong German team as a Panzer Division? Well possibly but I feel sure it has been done. I do think that the English are generally free of hang-ups about past wars but if we ever have a losing streak perhaps that will change.

  10. richard said

    I think Steven Cummings did a fantastic time trial at the Olympics, getting 11 th place with the worlds best, even beating David Zabriski, and other notable time trial specialists, how come he has not gone to the continent and turned pro for a big team? he certainly has the talent, only a minute or so of the best time trialists in the world, many of whom are more used to hot and humid weather conditions as they were born and bred in hot countries (or they just live in hot countries most of the year).
    I would love to see Cancellara, Schumi, Rogers etc etc, race time trials here in the UK against Hutchinson, Dawson and a few other brilliant Uk time trialists, I think you would be surprised what Hutchinson etc could against the continent pros, they wont be able to beat Hutchinson easily. Especially in his/their back yard. In the past the best UK time trialsists have been psyched out when going abroad (also they don’t travel well, and don’t like foreign foods/weather…), notably Mathew Ilingworth, in the past. Your thoughts?

  11. richard said

    how comes you don’t write on your blog, that the ‘Indian Raj invasion’ cricket team did very well ?
    What do you think about the career of Jamie Burrow ?

  12. Wislon said

    My view on the Brits Vs the continental pros in a TT is governed by one thought. Most important TT’s are part of a stage race. Therefore a true test of Hutchinson et al would be to ride the same stage race an see how their legs feel after the opening stages! I am however sure that if Schumi or Cancellara rode the wobbly wheelers 25 on XYZ123 course Hutch would put up a decent performance. This whole debate has been raging for years and its really a pointless debate as it does not matter nor does anyone care because a uk tester is a uk tester and there is no future on the continent for this type of tester – uk testing is analgous to cricket – its a british thing. Finally uk testing is dominated by the desire for a PB over set distances 10,25, 50 etc so to this end most uk courses are drag strips that require little or no bike handling skills i.e cornering at speed, climbing, braking , decending, sprinting. From what I have seen in the Tours its beating the opposition that matters not the time. I dont recall Lance saying in any pre race interview his goal was a PB up Alpe h’huez! I am sure Greenjersey will be able to provide a detailed retort on this thorny topic!!!
    greenjersey’s view is that UK riders turn to testing when they realise that is the only way they can win consistently. Why would Hutch want to be outsprinted by the likes of greenjersey in some no-name road race when he can be King of the Hill in UK testing?
    That said he is good at what he does. Take a look at the result of the 2007 British TT champs. That is a good ride by Hutch, three minutes behind Millar isn’t too dusty. BTW aren’t they two Olympic bronze medal winners in there?

    1. David Millar Saunier Duval 00:56:57 29.92mph
    2. Chris Newton 00:58:29 29.13mph
    3. Michael Hutchinson In Gear Quickvit RT 01:00:10 28.32mph
    4. Tom Burke 01:01:04 27.9mph

  13. richard said

    Michael Hutchinson is usually closer to Chris Newton though, maybe he got psyched out against Millar, just like Mathew Illingworth used to.
    David Millar has returned to the UK and been beaten a few times too, i believe one of the times was in the Isle of Man time trial, but that is probably a climbers time trial, I have’nt seen it.
    Can you guess whom my dads brothers son, rides for on the contitent ? You have had some clues in the past, one last clue – he would do fantastically in the Isle of Man time trial, and even better in the Alsps and Pirinees. Shame I was not as talented as him.

    Come on Richard, don’t be a tease! Tell us who is your nephew.

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