Edvald Boasson Hagen – a winner for all the family

8 Jul
Yesterday was surely one of the finest days for Norwegian cycling, with a  stage win for Edvald Boasson Hagen, and Thor Hushovd, the yellow jersey wearer,  finishing third. As there’s only two Norwegians in the race, that’s not bad. And with Contador’s various misfortunes added on, I am having a very good Tour so  far…

Indeed, there have been plenty of discussion points. Alberto Contador is  already over a minute behind the main contenders, which should make for some  explosive mountain stages. Mark Cavendish has continued his incredible winning  streak, this time even more impressively so, as he wasn’t able to rely much on his  lead-out train for his win on stage 5. He has contested the intermediate sprints  too, in a competition which may well have been changed in order to disadvantage  him. And what exactly is Garmin Cervelo’s tactics for the green jersey? Thor  Hushovd is slowly climbing his way up the leader board, even whilst the stated  aim is to win it for Tyler Farrar. I predict a change of approach (though that  might just be my national pride speaking).

Meanwhile, Norwegian papers are now likening Boasson Hagen to Eddy Mercx,  which is only slightly less incredible than the fact that Boasson Hagen had  never heard of the cycling legend before 2008.  He hadn’t been particularly  inspired by Hushovd either, in his formative years, which is also somewhat odd,  as he is the only Norwegian to have one more than one TDF stage, let alone any  jerseys. He’s a fast learner, then. Indeed, he showed his inexperience on stage  5, when he miscalculated the finishing line by several hundred metres, and thus  attacked too early. He joked that the subsequent ribbing he got from the peloton  would now be turned to congratulations, which was reward enough in itself.
But whilst Boasson Hagen’s win generated no end of national pride in the  Norwegian part of the household, there was plenty of merriment in the English  contingent too.

‘Have you see what his father is called?’ Simon asked. ‘Odd Erik!’

And that was the end to all sensible conversation.

2 Responses to “Edvald Boasson Hagen – a winner for all the family”

  1. Simon July 8, 2011 at 8:11 am #

    A wonderful moment for the tour! Apparently Odd Erik is a “real” alpha male name in Norway. Not sure if Alexander the Great would want to swap though, or Maximus from Gladiator.

  2. Mark July 8, 2011 at 11:03 am #

    Surely everyone has heard of Eric the Viking….and no, not the cartoon!

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