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BREAKING AWAY 2: BREAKING WIND

Jan 1, 2007

""Rocky Balboa"" opens Wednesday, with a 60-year-old Sylvester Stallone reprising the role for which he became famous. Given that each Rocky movie has been worse than the previous one, this seems like the most unnecessary sequel in movie history. Well, until they release ""Gigli II.""

But the new Rocky film got us thinking. What other sports movies are well past their shelf life for sequels? We present the following pitches and await your green light.

BREAKING AWAY 2: BREAKING WIND

[Montage showing the dramatic finale to ""Breaking Away.""]

VOICE-OVER: In 1979, they took our breath away by winning Indiana's Little 500. Now, 27 years later, the Cutters are back in the saddle for the greatest bike ride of all.

[Cut to close-up of the middle-aged CYRIL, MIKE, DAVE and MOOCHER leering at a large-busted podium girl at the Tour de France.]

CYRIL: Oooh-la-la. Talk about your mountain stages. I wouldn't mind bonking in those Pyrenees.

[Cut to the middle-aged CYRIL, MIKE, DAVE and MOOCHER sitting around the old rock quarry. Instead of swimming in it, they are drinking beer and tossing in their empties.]

MIKE: Let me get this straight. Some guy from Schwinn wants the Cutters to reunite to ride in the Tour de France. Says a team of lovable, middle-aged underdogs is just what the Tour needs after all the recent drug scandals. So even though we haven't done a race in three decades, he wants us to enter the most grueling event in sports. Ride 2,200 miles over 8,000-foot mountains, in the baking heat and the pouring rain. At our age. In our condition. [He stares at DAVE.]

DAVE: Yeah, that's about the size of it. So have you got any concerns?

[MIKE, MOOCHER and CYRIL look at each other for a moment.]

CYRIL: Just one.

DAVE: Yeah, what is it?

CYRIL: Do we really have to wear spandex? I mean, I don't know about you, but Mike has really let himself go.

[Cut to close-ups of the four, each sweating profusely, breathing heavily and in considerable agony. The camera then pulls back to show that they're not only riding Schwinns, they're riding Schwinn Sting-rays with banana seats and sissy bars.]

MIKE: I get the idea that we're supposed to be underdogs. But couldn't they at least have given us road bikes?

CYRIL: Consider yourself lucky we're not delivering newspapers.

[Cut to DAVE racing up Alpe d'Huez, dramatically passing biker after biker, then donning the yellow jersey at the end of the stage. MOOCHER pulls him aside.]

MOOCHER: Bad news Dave. The test results just came back.

DAVE: Anything the matter?

MOOCHER: Yeah, you tested positive for having a baseball card clipped to your spokes so that it would sound like a motorcycle so you would go faster.

Jim Caple is a senior writer for ESPN.com. He can be reached here. His Web site is back up at a slightly different address, jimcaple.net, with more installments of 24 College Avenue. http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=caple/061220