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Mathieu Van der Poel

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Re: Mathieu Van der Poel

07 Jan 2019 07:01

tobydawq wrote:
the delgados wrote:
tobydawq wrote:
the delgados wrote:The cyclo-cross community today was shocked to learn that Mathieu Van der Poel obliterated his opponents and won the Brussels race by close to a minute.
It was a very close race for about 20 seconds, then MVDP rode away and did not let up until the finish. Insiders and bettors expressed shock that he won by only a minute on a very challenging course. His closest rival, Wout van Aert stayed home today, most likely because he knew there was no point.


Eh, are we now going to have to hear this every time van der Poel wins when this has been happening for four years?


Sorry to offend your sensitivities, tobydawg. Just having a bit of fun while learning about the overall structure of cyclo-cross and how it might relate to doping in the sport.


I'm just saying it can be a bit repetitive if you need to groan each time he wins, when that happens all the time.

I discovered the sport three years ago. Then, it was more fun because Wout was at a similar level as Mathieu. That has not been the case the past three seasons, however. But this year, it has become excruciatingly one-dimensional. Last weekend, van der Poel crashed in the first lap and had a lot of technical issues and lost a huge amount of positions and time. Three laps later, he had a secure lead. He is just 23 years old, so in that sense it makes sense that he keeps on improving. It's just a bit unfair when he was already the best at 19.


I assure you that I am not groaning when MVDP wins a bike race. On a scale of 1 to 10, my interest in cyclo-cross is a 2.
I have zero amount of emotional investment, nor do I bet on the sport. I just find it remarkable that someone can dominate a pro level sport to the extent that he does. Honestly, I find the spectacle amusing to watch, hence the sarcasm.
That said, I posed some questions. So far you have pretty much tried to shut me down. I am curious to know why.
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Re: Mathieu Van der Poel

07 Jan 2019 09:03

the delgados wrote:The cyclo-cross community today was shocked to learn that Mathieu Van der Poel obliterated his opponents and won the Brussels race by close to a minute.
It was a very close race for about 20 seconds, then MVDP rode away and did not let up until the finish. Insiders and bettors expressed shock that he won by only a minute on a very challenging course. His closest rival, Wout van Aert stayed home today, most likely because he knew there was no point.

One thing to note, the delgados, is that once MVDP has established a gap he generally circulates at the same pace as his nearest rivals and often slackens his pace on the last lap.
He once responded to critics by saying that such a buffer protects him from the consequences of a flat or a mechanical. I think he could make a gap 2 or 3 mins if he really went full out. ;)
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07 Jan 2019 13:56

Which he did in some earlier DVE trofee race. Can't remember which, but it was 2 minutes.

How that is new, I don't know, because it isn't. Wellens, Nys, Groenendaal, Adri vd Poel, Ronald Liboton, all managed to win crosses with 1 to 2 minutes advantage if they were at their best.

And usually when somebody is really good he dominates entire seasons. Nys did it for almost his entire career.
Plus as somebody else already said, MvdP loses in MTB to Shurter and that other guy Kirschbaumer or something (sorry not good with MTB knowledge). And in road he won his stages but still has everything to prove in the classics. Plus he lost to Trentin in the EC. So not dominating at all there. I simply think aside from Van Aert, who's focus has switched to road more, there is nobody close in talent in cyclocross at the moment. So it becomes a bit one-sided
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Re: Mathieu Van der Poel

07 Jan 2019 17:47

TourOfSardinia wrote:
the delgados wrote:The cyclo-cross community today was shocked to learn that Mathieu Van der Poel obliterated his opponents and won the Brussels race by close to a minute.
It was a very close race for about 20 seconds, then MVDP rode away and did not let up until the finish. Insiders and bettors expressed shock that he won by only a minute on a very challenging course. His closest rival, Wout van Aert stayed home today, most likely because he knew there was no point.

One thing to note, the delgados, is that once MVDP has established a gap he generally circulates at the same pace as his nearest rivals and often slackens his pace on the last lap.
He once responded to critics by saying that such a buffer protects him from the consequences of a flat or a mechanical. I think he could make a gap 2 or 3 mins if he really went full out. ;)



I am terrible at the internet and am embarrassed to say I dont know how to isolate and post a portion of a post.
The last sentence of your comment stuck out.
After watching maybe twenty cyclo-cross races in my lifetime, I tend to agree that he eases up near the end. There are portions where the guy freewheels in spots where he would be going full gas. He could pretty much walk home in the last section of the race and win.
Again, i am a novice when it comes to this sport, and will defer to those who know way more than me. But given the fact he makes way more money than the pack fillers (which is basically everyone), and given the fact he wins races with ease, I think the question is legit.
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10 Jan 2019 09:09

Go watch some history, like I said in the post above. Wellens, Nys, etc etc etc all did the same in some seasons. They regularly won with more than 1 minute advantage
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Re:

10 Jan 2019 10:00

Dekker_Tifosi wrote:Go watch some history, like I said in the post above. Wellens, Nys, etc etc etc all did the same in some seasons. They regularly won with more than 1 minute advantage


I'm only a casual fan of Cyclocross but I echo this. It seems more common than not to have someone dominating. MVDP isn't alone in that regard.

That's not to say he isn't doping , but I don't think we can ignore the fact he is an incredible talent. I fully expect him to be a contender in the Northern Classics in a couple of years. Not sure about this year but wouldn't be shocked
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10 Jan 2019 16:20

If you're combination of slightly superior power and superior technical skills you can make a big difference in something like CX/XO. Even on the road one can make 30+ sec gap just by being better downhill. MVP is easily in top2 regarding power but also there seems to be a pretty solid gap between him and others (WvA is imho significantly worse) regarding technical skills.
Shut up, Jens!
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Re:

10 Jan 2019 17:59

Dekker_Tifosi wrote:Go watch some history, like I said in the post above. Wellens, Nys, etc etc etc all did the same in some seasons. They regularly won with more than 1 minute advantage


I have watched some history. I have mentioned this in at least one previous post.
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11 Jan 2019 07:22

It is ... incredible. But then you look at someone like Mikaela Shiffrin who has won 12 of last 13 WC slalom races, so it's not outside of the realm for someone to dominate in their specialty. In fact MS and MVDP are very similar -- same age, same potential versatility, dominating since they burst onto the scene. She's won downhills and GS's, which is about the same as a CX star winning a one-day classics race.

I find CX really exciting to watch on television, actually, when the camera setup is right and the course isn't totally manufactured.
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12 Jan 2019 10:49

.........who's gonna trust history? i'm thinking of a certain era when italians suddenly were winning WC CX

.....recently MVDP clocked up wins 100/101 ............still i don't think i saw anyjting nuclear

.....every week i look forward to seeing MVDP getting beat.............................

right now womens racing is so much better again...................loads of new talent coming through challenging
the old guard

how come this is not happening in mens events ....it's as though some 'status quo' is being protected?
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Re:

Yesterday 02:03

ebandit wrote:.........who's gonna trust history? i'm thinking of a certain era when italians suddenly were winning WC CX

.....recently MVDP clocked up wins 100/101 ............still i don't think i saw anyjting nuclear

.....every week i look forward to seeing MVDP getting beat.............................

right now womens racing is so much better again...................loads of new talent coming through challenging
the old guard

how come this is not happening in mens events ....it's as though some 'status quo' is being protected?


Women's racing is so much more interesting to watch! Purely from the POV of building the sport, appears to be going in the right direction, whereas men's less so. You want more competition, and you also want more talent getting to the top level. The problem of comparing current cx to cx from many years ago is, you want to see progression from one person dominating. Yes, there are prodigies that dominate in all sports. But there's dominance (winning lots) and then there's dominance (winning all the time, usually from the first minute onwards of an hour race!). Let's see - Sagan is a big winner, but he does not win everything and he does not win by ridiculous margins. In 2017 Schurter won all the WC races and the World Champs, but did not win everything by massive margins (and was not winning every weekend).

None of this means vdP is doping, we've already established reasons for that. However, it sure as hell gets more suspicious each week that he dusts people and sets up a minute lead 20 minutes into the race.
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1 minute ago

I am in no way, shape or form saying that testing clean means you're clean -- but winning 100 races means he's been tested 100 times, likely at least once a week. plus OOC, given that he often races Sat/Sun.

The odds of slipping up if you're on a program, and tested that frequently are pretty high. Look how many people get dinged just for being unavailable or missing a test message. So while normally I'd dismiss pishposh like "world's most tested athlete" in MVDP's case it might actually show that he's clean. Or that he's extremely meticulous or on some kind of undetectable regime, too.

I dunno, I could be totally wrong, but being a program and winning everything in sight -- as in every race you enter, once or twice a week -- is walking a bit of a tightrope.
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