The temperaure was soaring at 30 degrees as if the mountain climbing wasn’t difficult enough. Landis kept drenching himself in water. He kept fighting. In sport, you always have a window of an opportunity if you are look hard enough. It is not over till it’s over. To win, you have to first believe that you can win. Without that, you have no chance. With the belief, wonders and great feats can be achieved.
After the disaster yesterday, Landis said that the Tour de France was over for him. Today, when he had nothing to lose, he let out his last spark. Those were sparks of brilliance. Landis believed again. The result – Landis is a real challenger again.
As Landis himself states:
I have come here to win the Tour and I am not done fighting yet.
Two days ago, Landis looked in a strong position. Yesterday’s debacle left almost no one giving him a chance. It looked impossible and not just improbable.
BBC live commentary sums up the situation:
Floyd Landis stages a remarkable fightback after his disaster on Wednesday as he takes an incredible stage 17 of the Tour de France. Landis imploded on the final climb on stage 16 and was over eight minutes off yellow jersey holder Oscar Pereiro.
But the American produced an extraordinary ride and finished over five minutes ahead of Carlos Sastre. Pereiro managed to retain the yellow jersey but is now 12 seconds ahead of Sastre and 30 seconds ahead of Landis.
Landis lead the peleton. Then, he left the peleton looking from the back at a great fightback. Then, he got to the breakaway markers. He kept leading by over seven minutes over the peleton. He left Sinkewitz the leader, behind. In the end, he finished a full 5′42″ ahead of second Carlos Sastre.
The race was wide open yesterday. Today, it has opened much more. We have also witnessed one of the epic rides. It was a great fightback yes. It was also one of the greatest performances in Tour de France history.