I’m learning to appreciate a loser.
My Chicago Bears are outright pathetic with the consensus being both the head coach AND general manager need to go.
My hometown Indiana Pacers are a collection of nothing more than decent role players and it shows with a predictable last place standing in the Central Division.
My beloved alma mater, Indiana University, is coming off its worst basketball season in history and on Tuesday, the Hoosiers lost at home to Loyola. Maryland, not Marymount. No Hank Gathers here.
So it’s only fitting that one of sports’ all-time losers is celebrating a birthday today.
Happy birthday Wim Vansevenant.
Who is Wim Vansevenant?
Wim is a Belgian cyclist, riding in the sport’s ultimate level, the Tour de France. However, maybe Wim wished he hadn’t. Our boy here finished the Tour de France in last place three times. The French call it “lanterne rouge,” which means “red lantern,” in reference to the red lantern hung from the caboose of railway trains back in the day.
Vansevenant is the only rider since the event’s inception in 1903 to finish last on three different occasions. In fact, Vansevenant pulled off the feat in three successive years, bringing up the rear in 2006, 2007 and 2008.
Understandably, Wim retired after last season. Word is he returned to Flanders to tend his parents’ farm.
Ah, it’s like the reverse Paul Blake from “Necessary Roughness.”