We all know that professional cycling is full of deals and alliances, but the Tour of California seems to be in a league of its own. For example;
Stage 1; The mid stage hill would normally take out a lot of sprinters (eg Cav), but no, not in this race.
Did Mr Putin tell Katusha to ride at the front of the peleton all day to show just how good the Russians are, and then Kristoff gets to the finish line and says “hey dude, where’s my sprint train”. Hello. But to be fair, they do this all the time; meaning their Directeur Sportif needs sacking.
Stage 2; 2 man breakaway, 3.30 mins at 50 km and the combined might of the peleton, in particular Direct Energie, Tinkoff and BMC can’t bring them back. C’mon. And guess what, the two breakaway riders are Americans.
Stage 6; “Honest Aussie” Dennis ignored the script, pretending he couldn’t understand his DS (see Cycling News report), otherwise (surprise), Americans would have come first and second. The world TT champion followed script and came sixth.
It seems like the world tour teams have been told to take it easy, so as not to show up the local teams, hence generating more local interest (and dare I say, money).
Let’s face it, the powerhouse BMC team could successfully team time trial away from the whole peleton anytime; but where is the drama in that?
And maybe that is why no one runs betting on the American races.