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Welcome to STop, the Seattle Times Opinion blog where our editorial writers and editors share their evolving thoughts on a variety of issues. STop is a place where opinion writers and readers can exchange views and readers can learn more about how editorial positions are formed.

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July 22, 2004

A yellow jersey for Al

Let's be honest, if American Lance Armstrong were not leading the Tour de France toward a record sixth consecutive victory, most of us would not be staying up late to watch.

The Outdoor Life Network, one of those cable channels usually surfed in a blur, is doing an excellent job of hosting the event for the casual viewer.

Al Trautwig is the perfect choice to connect the dots between commentators Bob Roll, Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen. The last two have cool accents so whatever they say sounds especially authoritative. Altogether they combine enough insight, experience and upper-English buffalo-chip flights of rhetorical fancy to hold the attention. The real virtuoso work is being done by the OLN directors cutting between cameras to tell the story of the race.

Cycling is an international sport besotted with arcane folkways, maniac fans, criminality and chemical dependency. The perfect summer replacement for the Sopranos.

Throw in the fact the sport may be the most demanding on the face of the planet. All combined it's worth being groggy for work in the morning.

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Posted by Lance Dickie at July 22, 2004 01:35 PM



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