It's the Mark Cavendish show over here in the Tour de France and I must
say the folk who have crossed the Channel are becoming quite unbearable
at the success of their British superstar.
get me wrong, they have every right to be cocky given it's been more
than a decade since Chris Boardman ruled the roads and dominated the
sports pages in the Fleet Street press.
I've never been able to
work out why Britain hasn't produced more champions given the country's
close proximity to continental Europe.
Even their Irish neighbours have enjoyed more success with Stephen Roche and Sean Kelly lighting up the podium in the 1980s.
success on the track has been well documented at all international
levels - from the Olympic Games to the World Championships, the Brits
are almost second-to-none.
I'm sure I'll attract a wave of
criticism when I suggest cycling's environment has shifted from the
track to the road in the last decade.
I feel there is less
interest in racing on the velodrome to what we're seeing on the road
with events such as the Tour de France, the Giro d'Italia and the Tour
I mean the anticipation for the Tour begins weeks
and months in advance, while few people would even remotely know when
and where the track cycling world titles are held every year, even when
are taking place.
The track scene is dominated by few nations, but it's a different situation on the professional road scene.
I'm personally wrapped to see Japanese rider Yukiya Arashiro crack it for a top 5 finish in the stage two sprint won by Cav.
fact, I'd welcome a new generation of cyclists from Japan in the Tour
in coming years, similar to the Aussie invasion of the late 90s and
early 2000s as there is a great deal of media interest from that part
of the world here in France.
For now I'm loving the Cav show. He's a great sportsman, a terrific showman and has got some mongrel to boot.
I have no doubt we're seeing a legend in the making.