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Le Tour 2014, stage 8: Kadri survives from break, Contador and Nibali assert themselves

Saturday,  07/12/14  12:00 PM

Blel Kadri attacks the break to win stage 8Today's stage 8 of Le Tour was predictably boring for the first three hours (ho hum, a five man break pulls 10 minutes on a disinterested and resting peleton in quiet sunshine), and then predictably exciting for the last one (a breakaway survivor wins and a GC battle errupts on the final climb in pouring rain).  And so it goes.  Congratulations to Blel Kadri (call him "Joe" :) who attacked his breakaway companions as the climbs started near the end and won convincingly, taking the lead in the climbers' polka dot jersey competition as well.

Vincenzo Nibali marks Alberto Contador on the final climb of stage 8Meanwhile back in the peleton Alberto Contador's Saxo teammates cranked up the pressure and decanted the field on the first climb, leaving a select group of about 20 riders to content the final short (1 miles) but steep (10%+) climb to the finish.  At that point Contador attacked, but he couldn't shake yellow-jersey-wearer Vincenzo Nibali, who was content to follow and not lose any time.  Richie Porte was right there too, good for him as he assumes leadershop of the Sky team from defending champion Chris Froome who crashed out in stage 5.  Meanwhile the other contenders all fell back a bit, as the Tour saw a main selection that establishes the leaderboard going into the second week.  Nibali's teammate Jakob Fulsang lost time but is still in second (1:44), Porte moved up to to third (1:58), Michal Kwiatkowski lost time but is now fourth (2:26), Alejandro Valverde also lost time but also moved up, to fifth (2:27), and Contador sits sixth (2:34).  Other would-be contenders include Rui Costa (8th, 2:52), Bauke Mollema (9th, 3:02), Tejay Van Garderen (12th, 3:34), and Andrew Talansky (16th, 4:42), who was the victim of a poorly timed crash just before the final climb.

Tomorrow will be more of the same: not high mountains, exactly, but six categorized climbs.  They don't come at the end, so perhaps we will see another breakaway and another victorious survivor.  Of note, Peter Sagan finally lost time today (18:17), after being up among the leaders in every stage so far, so he might be allowed to escape for a win.

[ Le Tour 2014: all posts | index ]

 

 

time passing

Saturday,  07/12/14  12:55 PM

time passing ...I'm in a reflective mood today, thinking about this year (already halfway!) and last summer (already a year ago!).  So much has happened in that time that I can't say "wow, how time flies", and yet it seems weird that so much time has passed.  Lots of memories.  You just do the best you can with each day, and see what happens...  I guess creating memories is the best use of time :)  Onward!

Brazil Netherlands analysisAnd so the world cup winds down; today we have the third place match, between Brazil, looking for some redemption after getting blown out by Germany, and the Netherlands, looking for a goal (pun intended, they've now gone two straight games without scoring one).  I've been rooting for this matchup - of course, wish it was the final - and am hoping for a wide open game; each time has some amazing scorers if they're free to fly.  Most pundits are picking Brazil, but I say Go Oranje!

Firefox vs Chrome (and IE and Safari)I've temporarily (?) switched back to Firefox as my everyday browser.  What happened was; I logged into a server, launched its browser, which happened to be Firefox, and was surprised at how snappy and cool it looked.  This is just an experiment, but so far, so good.  I've been using Chrome for so long now... the main advantage of Firefox is that it doesn't bring the previously opened window forward before launching a new window, like Chrome does.  Pretty nitty.  Stay tuned!

Speaking of page loading speed; I hate dislike it a lot when you load a page, but the main content loads separately.  You end up waiting forever while images dance all over the place before you can read the content.  Whatever happened to basic HTML, it wasn't so bad, was it?  (This is particularly bad on mobile devices)

J.R.R.Tolkein in the age of political correctnessWhy it's a good thing that J.R.R.Tolkein didn't write in the era of political correctness.  Hilarous but quite true.  You could actually substitute anyone's name for Tolkein's.  I've decided that "political correctness" is uniformly bad.  It merely means the majority imposing their views on everyone else.

An interesting corrective tactic: Following Netflix, YouTube shames ISPs delivering slow video.  This could be a great way to achieve net neutrality without regulation.

solar-powered donkeyIt's a new world: Plug your phone into this solar-powered donkey.  Excellent.

I'm eagerly awaiting my Amazon Fire phone (of course!), both to see what Firefly is all about (visual search!), as well as to finally have an Android phone.  Don't know yet whether it will be my daily driver, stay tuned.  But I agree with this: Amazon's Fire phone is an experiment to mitigate mobile's threat.  You've got to love that they're trying it!

Meanwhile: Google sets aside $500M to expand Shopping Express nationwide.  Wow.  Your phone is about to be a battleground for the retail giants.  (And eyesFinder wants to be an arms vendor in the war :)

Canada's Lake LouiseLet's wrap up with Canada's most beautiful spots.  Wow.

 
 

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