As someone who haphazardly participates in local sprint triathlons with "finishing" as my goal, I am awed and inspired by athletic feats accomplished through magnificent displays of endurance, heart, and grace. This year's Tour de France, won for the third time in a row by the American Lance Armstrong, had moments so powerful and so moving that I recall the images over and over--convinced they carry a message about human endeavors far beyond the esoteric world of elite road cycling.
There were amazing scenes of sportsmanship, of joy, and of tragedy. A spent Jan Ullrich, the Olympic champion and former Tour winner, reaching out his hand for the hand of Armstrong as they crossed a stage finish line, a heartrending gracious acknowledgement of Armstrong's greatness. Team leader Armstrong choosing to lose precious seconds in the all-important team time trial to wait for a fallen teammate. The face of a young...
Interested in reading more?
Become a Member of
Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?