Play-by-play moment: Phil’s crowning moment in the finish of Stage 5 was to correctly call the winner as the sprinters crossed the line–Mark Cavendish of Team Columbia–then to immediately change his mind: “Cavendish is there! And he’s done it! It’s Ciolek! It’s Ciolek on the line! It wasn’t Cavendish! Gerald Ciolek has taken it.” And there matters stayed for the next minute or so as Phil and Paul Sherwen watched replays: “Well, that was a tremendous finish. Gerald Ciolek is also here to win for himself, as he has now proved. He is also a lead-out man for Mark Cavendish. That was a superb … Look at the man at the back there, the champion of France, desperately, desperately close [after 220 kilometers or so in a breakaway] … and … that looks like Mark Cavendish to me, Paul. Well, I thought he was Cavendish first of all, I reversed to Ciolek, and I’m coming back. Mark Cavendish has won the stage for Great Britain. Absolutely superb, he delivered.”
That wasn’t quite as bad as mistaking which team just scored the deciding touchdown in a football game, but it was close.
Remove the carrots from the fruit basket: [As the peloton closed to within 30 seconds of a three-man break about nine kilometers from the finish of Stage 5] “Any second now the referee will ask for the removal of all vehicles behind those three riders to give them one last chance to hold off the peloton, remove all the carrots from the fruit basket up there, and leave the race to try and chase them down. The riders at the back of course just want to get to Châteauroux and enjoy the shower today.”
Some call them gams: “Somewhere, the champion of France has found some power in those pistons we call legs.”
Tour wedgie: “Nineteen seconds lead, just inside 4 kilometers from the finish, and Team Columbia have got hold of the Tour de France by the scruff of the racing shorts.”