Six Days of the Worlds – Anatomy of a Photo: Paolo Shoots to Kill

Six Days of the Worlds – Anatomy of a Photo: Paolo Shoots to Kill

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I remember two principle things from the 2007 Men’s Elite Road Race.  First, my favorite rider at the time, Danilo Di Luca, was barred from starting due to his implication in the Oil for Drugs doping investigation.  Second, there was a controversy over the fact that Paolo Bettini had refused to sign the UCI’s Code of Ethics which stated that any rider who tested positive for banned doping products agreed to pay the UCI a year’s salary as part of their penalty.

Bettini, of course, argued that this violated his human rights and that he refused out of principle and not because he was involved in doping practices. To be fair, the testing process is far from perfect and riders have falsely tested positive in the past; with that uncertainty in mind, I suppose I can see his viewpoint. Despite that, his refusal was largely seen as an unwillingness to commit to riding clean which is, in itself, an interesting commentary on the state of affairs in cycling in general.

In any case, the UCI moved to ban him from the race, a big legal battle ensued, Teeny Bettini was allowed to start, and he bolted from an elite group to win on the streets of Stuttgart, firing an imaginary gun in the direction of the officials’ booth – which on it’s own also created a whole new controversy.

So many people shot at me this week, so I wanted to do the same when I crossed the line. The gun was not fired at someone in particular. If someone felt it, then, they know who they are.

Which is kind of a way of saying that he shot at people in particular.

In any case, I don’t remember much from the race itself, aside from the finish line antics.  Until I saw this picture, I had even forgotten that my boy Grimpeur the Elder was in the winning move, or that Good Cadelephant was there as well, taking last place in the sprint.  The Ugliest Man Ever To Wear a Helmet, Stefan Schumacher, managed to dope his way onto another podium, and perenial Forgetable Man, Alexandr Kolobnev, took silver.

// Anatomy of a Photo // Six Days Of

  1. The Ugliest Man Ever To Wear a Helmet, Stefan Schumacher, managed to dope his way onto another podium

    Indeed, oye, we might have to see that ugly dolt soon. He is a perfect example of why a two year ban is too short. Lifetime, 1st offense.

    He even looks like he is recalculating his EPO dose for the next big race in that photo.

    But you have to hand it to Paulo, coming into it as a favorite and getting the job done, especially on an Italian team, that’s class.

  2. The Ugliest Man Ever To Wear a Helmet, Stefan Schumacher, managed to dope his way onto another podium

    I don’t believe this for a minute. While Schumacher’s head is a strange and disproportionate size, akin to Lex Luthor, he has nothing on Cadel “Bat Boy” Evans.

  3. I have a love hate relationship with Bettini. You have to respect the guy’s palmares. But in my view a number of his actions during his career showed a lack of true class. Surely there must be some question marks over his integrity, and not just as a result of the “shooting accident” shown above. Who can forget his complete destruction of the field in the GP Zurich in 2005? And the fact that he spent most of his early years being Bartoli’s water carrier then suddenly went from potential giant killer to giant.

  4. We Americans pretend to, and actually do, shoot eachother all the time so I don’t really see what the big deal is. Get over it Europussies and arm yourselves.

    You gotta wonder about a guy who’s always got ethical questions swirling about (queue sneeze into elbow; Armstrong) like Paulo. I mean sheesh, who stacks their national team with all their BFF’s?

    As for Kolobnev, I’m sort of liking him for this year and just may tip him for VSP-WC.

  5. I reckon Cadel’s got a bit more of a Thunderbird puppet about him, rather than Bat Boy.

    He also sports a truly magnificent bum chin. I wonder how he cleans it? Dental floss?

  6. HEADLINES OF DOPING ABOUND! Surprise surprise.

  7. @Hawkeye

    He also sports a truly magnificent bum chin. I wonder how he cleans it? Dental floss?

    No way, it’s too cavernous. You need a Q-Tip for that shit.

  8. @Marko

    You talking about the latest on Can’tadore?

  9. @Cyclops
    Yes, but I think Mabeline Masquera is the catch of the day

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