A different Floyd article

Photo by AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski

Photo by AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski

If you want something less gruesome and much more entertaining that reading about Floyd's dead hip bone, you can read Dave Zabriskie's interview of Floyd Landis for Bicycling Magazine. Landis is a bit of an anti-Armstrong when it comes to PR, high-tech bike gear, eating, and personality, so it's full of wonderful gems from both, like:

DZ: In the beginning, you started riding your mountain bike to go fishing. But then--what?--you just enjoyed the riding more than the fishing at some point?
FL: Well, we were 15, so we weren't really going fishing in the first place. We were just going down to the river to burn things and throw rocks. When you don't have video games, you do stuff like that. You can't shoot imaginary animals, so you just go kill real ones. We'd take our BB guns and shoot whatever got in the way--birds, ducks, squirrels, rabbits, the neighbors' chickens. Anyway, it got boring, and we just started riding our bikes. Since then I haven't shot anything.

DZ: So, you're a pretty successful guy, a team leader with a fat contract--why do you share an apartment in Girona?
FL: Well, because, Dave, you clean a lot.

DZ: Whose upbringing was weirder? I was a non-Mormon in Salt Lake City, and you were the strict Mennonite in long pants with no TV from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
FL: I didn't witness your upbringing, but if I had to guess, based on outcome, I would say yours.

DZ: On CSC, we have one leader this year, that's Ivan Basso. I mean, I could lead the team in other ways and directions...
FL: Yeah, backwards.
DZ: ...but if they want leading for the win, that's Ivan.
FL: Give us some examples of ways you're capable of leading things.
DZ: I lead things in a positive, you know, positive flowing flow of energy throughout every...
FL: You're not making any sense.

DZ: Johan and Bjarne are excellent directors, no doubt. But I would not label them geniuses. Bjarne's very nice, and he looks like he's thinking a lot, but I'm not sure that he is.
FL: Holy shit. Um, Bjarne happens to be your boss.
DZ: These guys...I think it's not that hard to use tactics in bike races. I mean you don't have to be a genius. It's pretty simple. And they can say whatever they want in the car, but if the rider isn't capable of it, then it doesn't happen. So they have to have a good rider.
FL: The way I see it, there are five scenarios: If you're smart and you're weak, you can't win. If you're stupid and you're strong, you'll probably figure out a way to lose. If you're stupid and weak, then you should probably quit. If you're strong and smart enough to figure out how the race works, then you have a good chance of winning. If you're strong and just a little bit smart, smart enough to listen to the director in the car, and he's smart--that's the whole point of a director. When you have a lot of stupid, strong people who listen, then you have a good team. Because it's not possible in cycling to have nine smart, strong guys. Even if you took all the smart, strong guys you wouldn't get nine. So that's what the director is for. Would you confirm that?
DZ: Yeah. There are people in the sport who could satisfy themselves just staring at a pillar.

I also never knew that Zabriskie has never been in a wind tunnel. I guess when you have the 'best aerodynamic position in the peloton' there's no need to.

The newstand issue of Bicycling Magazine has a bit more in these little "Dumb and Dumber" sidebars, so be sure to pick up a copy if you enjoy.

related articles: Tour de France 2006
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