Sunday, July 10, 2005

Tour Update

Today Austinite Lance Armstrong slipped into third place in the Tour de France, giving up the yellow jersey. This was to be expected, and the riders in first and second place are no threat to Lance. Having to defend the jersey is a lot tougher for the riders, so strategically, it makes sense to let someone else, who is not a threat, wear it for a few days. Tomorrow is a rest day and then the riders head to the Alps on Tuesday.

This weekend I've read several articles about Lance and his impending retirement. One common thread, which is also common in articles about his off-season habits, is Lance's fondness for Shiner Bock beer, Mexican food and barbeque. These are the three main food groups for Austinites. The articles made me think about a story a heard on the radio about three years ago on the JB & Sandy Morning Show. Sandy, who had known Lance for years, ran into Lance one night at the Salt Lick, a barbeque restaurant way out in the country south of Austin. Now you have to understand that the Salt Lick is really popular, but there is usually a wait. It's also BYOB and cash only, so you really have to pre-plan if you are heading out there. Many times Doug and I have gone there without beer.

Sandy talked about running into Lance at the Salt Lick. His U.S. Postal team mates were with him, as they were in town doing some spring training. Lance invited Sandy to join their table. When the meal was over, Lance remembered that it was a cash-only place, and he had more than a dozen folks at his table and not enough cash to pay for it. Sandy said Lance was momentarily embarrassed, until his (now ex-) wife assured him she could take care of the bill.

I'm not exactly sure what made me think of that story, except maybe that Doug & I got barbeque last night.

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