Tour de France

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mrblackbat
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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Tue Jul 16, 2013 10:13 pm

Anyway, moving on, rather sad to see the probable end of Thibaut Pinot's career. :( seems he's quit the tour over fear of descending. I can empathise; scares the shit out of me! Bizarrely I'm far more comfortable topping 40mph on a snowboard than 35 on a bike..

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:03 pm

I don't know - nerve comes back... and he's still really young. Had hopes for him after a good fourth in the tour de suisse as well.

Just watching the highlights at the moment... it's been interesting how much of a factor descending has become in recent years. in 2012 people were talking about climbers who couldn't time trail... the theme this year seems to be otherwise strong GC riders who can't descend.

I know I have a magic gradient... couldn't possibly tell you exactly what it is, but there is a certain angle which just takes all my confidence away.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by Jim » Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:30 pm

It may sound odd, but from a non-cyclist who merely spectates, is it the extreme speed and vulnerability that causes such problems? The proximity of other riders? Mountain roads, lack of barriers etc etc.

Combination of the above?

Either way, I'm really sorry to hear about Pinot. Shame to hear that.

Its funny really, I noticed on Pro Cycling Manager of all places, that by and large, the GC contenders mostly have a pretty poor downhill stat, with Tommy Voeckler being the rider with the best that I found. Is it a physique or mentality problem that these superb athletes have such a issue descending?

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:02 am

Generally a great breakaway rider like voeckler (or for that matter Jens Voigt, Cancellara, Luis Leon-Sanchez to name but a few) will be a good descender... its vitally important to make any small advantage stick over rolling terrain.

There are a few good ones among the top riders though. Contador is a good descender... Sammy Sanchez is one of the best as well... although he hasn't been showing great GC form of late.

The pick of the bunch though and possibly the best riding today is Nibali.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:22 am

Jim wrote:It may sound odd, but from a non-cyclist who merely spectates, is it the extreme speed and vulnerability that causes such problems? The proximity of other riders? Mountain roads, lack of barriers etc etc.

Combination of the above?

Either way, I'm really sorry to hear about Pinot. Shame to hear that.

Its funny really, I noticed on Pro Cycling Manager of all places, that by and large, the GC contenders mostly have a pretty poor downhill stat, with Tommy Voeckler being the rider with the best that I found. Is it a physique or mentality problem that these superb athletes have such a issue descending?
A fair chunk of the stats in that game are utter bollocks; as with FM.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by Jim » Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:57 pm

Another feather in Froome's cap today with the time trial victory! Great tactical decision to switch to a time trial bike on the final descent and come back from 15 seconds down to win by 9.

The man just keeps impressing!

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:48 pm

Peroud wins the chuck norris award... riding with a broken collar bone and near the top before he comes off with 2k to go.

Big loss for Mollema.

Looking at the leaderboard today - if you swaped Valverde for Mollema, its pretty much what I would have predicted a top 6 at the beginning.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:00 am

Jim wrote:Another feather in Froome's cap today with the time trial victory! Great tactical decision to switch to a time trial bike on the final descent and come back from 15 seconds down to win by 9.

The man just keeps impressing!
You'll never know for sure; it was a pretty sloppy change over and cost a fair bit of time in itself. I don't think it'd have been much different if he'd not changed.

The next few days are going to be awesome though.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:20 am

quintana was about the only one who managed a smooth changeover... I'm with boardman on the push starts as well... if it isn't a mechanical fault or a crash I don't see why riders should get a shove start from their mechanic because they chose to get a different bike.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:25 am

I'd go as far as saying that you should only be allowed to swap for an identical bike anyway; it doesn't make much sense to me to be allowed to do a climbing part of a course with one set of gear ratios, and a downhill section with a completely different one.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:43 am

Possibly not - could add a little more intrigue.

Although maybe just make everyone have to have the same road bike... if only to stop me having to listen to another tiresome boardman aerodynamics lecture.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Thu Jul 18, 2013 5:27 pm

Incidentally, SKy have released the data to l'Equipe and they seem convinced everything looks good.
http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/news/tour ... 48218.html

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Re: Tour de France

Post by Jim » Thu Jul 18, 2013 6:50 pm

Finally should put to bed any accusations then. They've gone as far back as Froome's Vuelta debut in 2011 so that's a hell of a lot of data to hand over.

I hope there is one more stage win for Froome on this tour, so that perhaps he might be able to enjoy less scrutiny from the press, but I don't see it now. I think Sky will just try and manage the gap and not push too hard.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by mrblackbat » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:03 pm

I'll be very surprised if he gets another stage. There's no need and most of the riders in the break won't be a threat. I think you need to have a look how stage bike racing work! ;)

Also, a single journalist isn't necessarily proof. I'm hoping they'll still make the data public post race.

On another note, the attack from Andy Shleck on the first ascent was awesome, effortless and stylish. The sport definitely misses him at the top of his game.

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Re: Tour de France

Post by theadore » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:05 pm

Yeah - saw the data thing today... UKDA predictably have made a nothing statement.

Good move from Sky... hopefully after the tour is over they will get the other teams together and hammer something out... they're clearly the strongest team out there at the moment, and I think if they get together with Garmin, Saxo and Movistar we could finally get something in place which would satisfy

Great stage today - Van Garderen and Riblon were great.

Sky got really lucky.... only a lenient penalty and a mercurial performance from porte stopped froome losing a lot more time to Quintana. He will definitely win of course, but might make the next couple of stages a bit more fun.

^^ - BB snuck this in while I was typing... agree about the schleck move... I definitely miss him as a rider, the 2010 tour with him a contador was one of the best tour duels I've ever seen.

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