I thought Lance's comments from the podium were the perfect response to all those who accuse him of doping - that he feels sorry for those who witness miracles and can only deny their reality.
In case anyone forgot, Merckx was thrown out of the Giro early in his career for doping, which he always denied. Lance has never tested positive for anything. So are we are going to believe a bunch of malicious bullshit rumors about Lance, but insist that the organizers of the Giro wronged Eddy? Eddy was the greatest cyclist of all time, period. Lance is the most successful TdF rider of all time, period. Both deserve their postions. Neither's record will be challenged in my lifetime, and quite possibly never challenged.
Jerry Moos Houston, TX
Aldo Ross <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: Just a few thoughts on Tours past:
43 years ago, in 1962, Jacques Anquetil won his third Tour de France. During his lap of honor, hundreds of spectators booed and jeered, angry at the manner in which he had won. Never particularly popular with the public, Anquetil had ruined his teammate's chances of personal success by using-them-up, one by one, to neutralize his adversaries in the mountains. Some of the public did not appreciate his selfishness.
Anquetil was booed and jeered again two years later, when he won the 1964 Tour de France from the extremely-popular Raymond Poulidor. Anquetil set the seemingly-unassailable record of five Tour wins, but the public's opinion of him was the lowest ever.
9 years earlier, in 1953, Louison Bobet was also booed and jeered during his lap of honor. Another "unworthy" winner, he would go on to tie Philippe Thys's record of three wins. Why did they boo Bobet? Because it had taken him seven tries to win the Tour, and most people had given up on him ever taking the yellow jersey.
Best victory ceremony - Paris, 1972, when Eddy Merckx took his fourth TdF and handed his green points jersey to rival Cyrille Guimard. Check the picture on page 243 of "The Official Tour de France Centennial".