Yesterday while we raced the 4th in Burien at the Matava crit, a Seattle-area classic, the announcer mentioned how Tyler had raced there as a junior so many times in the past. I’d watched him there, raced a few races he was in, and followed his progress to a Pro Tour racer with pride too. Today was a tough day for Tyler and he lost his normal, reserved cool. Eurosport UK covers what happened during Stage 5 in an well-written article.
For three consecutive days, Farrar has been thrown off his bike and cheese-grated by the awaiting tarmac; for three days, instead of competing for wins the American knows he’s capable of, Farrar has been reduced to leaving pools of blood over various roads of France; for three days, the 28-year-old from Washington has probably been reading on internet forums about how he’s past it, while looking down at scabs and bruises and wondering just how he’s feasibly meant to get back on it.
Earlier I linked to a YouTube video on Twitter that shows a shaken Tyler paying the Argus bus a visit to talk to Tom Veelers, whom he blames for the crash.
In a sport many of us old racers feel is over-marketed, cynical, and corrupt with catered-to-personalities and boring, pre-determined races; this shows how chaotic, real, and emotional it really is on the road. On the world’s stage today is what you’d see at a local race after a contested sprint when the testosterone is coursing through bulging veins and the emotions are running high. It’s not the slick version shown on TV with HUMAN graphics from NBC Sports; as if Cuddles was touchy feely.
This is as real, raw, and human as it gets from a blue-collar, working man’s sport. Not one that was made for Fondo hospitality tents with California wine and cheese. Tyler must have avoided the marketing and PR staff looking for him to get to the bus and I’m sure regrets it afterwards, but fewer true words have been spoken in the sport recently than…
hey you don’t do that to someone.
No you don’t. Not in this sport.