So, I don’t know that there is ever a bad time to be in Brussels but during the Tour has to be the absolute best time. My favorite athlete on the planet forever is shooting for a record eighth win. There were a bunch of nasty crashes, the route is crowded and narrow and blah blah. All that matters is Lance wasn’t involved in any of the accidents or injuries. I have no idea if he has a shot at this but if I were in charge of the world, he would win it every year forever and buy a tandem bike* and live happily ever after in Albuquerque. Anyway, some dude from Bicycling magazine who knows way more about all this is cautiously optimistic about his chances:
The layout of this year’s Tour favors an Armstrong miracle. Early in the race, the riders will be taken across 13.2 kilometers of bone-jarring, eye-shaking, crash-inducing cobblestone roads during Stage 3-a day that probably favors Armstrong’s heavier build and race experience over Contador’s lightness and youth. It could lead to a time gap similar to last year’s split in Stage 3, when Armstrong anticipated a change in headwind that Contador didn’t and finished in a group 41 seconds ahead. Besides the short, 8km prologue, which likely won’t impact the final standings, there’s only one time trial, the 52-km Stage 19. Both the lack of other time trials and this one’s late appearance favor Armstrong. He’s not as strong against the clock as Contador, and he tends to become stronger and fitter as the Tour goes on. Similarly, the key stages of the Tour are expected to come in the third and final week, starting on July 19 in the 15th stage, when the race enters the Pyrenees for three back-breaking days.
*That would be lame from anyone but him. You get that, right?