105th Ronde van Vlaanderen: April 4th, 2021

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You can say that, but riding like Simon Gerrans isnt his nature, actually quite the opposite. Thats obvious to everyone who have seen the guy race. But secondly, riding like this, worst case is 2nd and best case is 1st. Taking the wheel sucking all-or-nothing approach and you can end up umpteenth instead of first off all securing the 2nd. Maybe 4 years down the road in the exact same situation with one more win under his belt (and a sense that he stands absolutely no chance in the sprint), he will do that. That will be the correct thing to do, but surely he thought he would stand a chance playing it this way and if everything went to ***, well, you still get 2nd and you get beat by a phenomenon and beat another.

Not bad.
Of course. I never contested any of that. However, all of this further proves my point that he's a brave rider and so made a brave decision. Not necessarily a smart one though, given the odds of sprinting against one of the quickest finishers in the peloton bar top pure sprinters. That's the whole point. I'm not taking anything away from Asgreen, he's 100% the deserving winner, but that's beside the point at hand.
 
No real talk about Brennauer but she's probably the best sprinter left in the group.

Right, Paterberg time.

Cille in the grass... Here goes IJzeren Annemiek. Anna is hurting, can't get to the front! Elisa struggling around others too, but she's got there, needs to go hard to not let van Vleuten go...
 
I think it would have sucked, the DQSses were embarrasing for a couple of minutes when Alaph was also not working in the second group.

I mean he can decide not to take turns with van der Poel, ok they will slow down and everything comes together and maybe Senechal can win or more likely someone like Stuyven sneaks away. So his team's chances (but it's also a sport for individuals) would probably even be worse if he had refused.
Sure, that’s a reasonable tactical argument. But a tactical argument to pull is very different to an argument that there’s some kind of moral obligation to pull when it’s sub optimal because it’s “grown up”. The grown up thing to do is to ride the strategy that maximises your chance of winning.
 
Does she have a big enough gap? Two teams with two riders in the chasing group. It may not matter but that extra energy she used to close the gap to Brown when she could wait for SD and FdJ could wind up costing her. She would have had likely had an even bigger gap.
 
Such an awkward gapm it looks like a lot less than the time gap on the graphic. A lot is going to be about the SD Worx work there, as their issue is that Anna VDB would probably want to escape again from here, Demi is more expendable (on paper at least) but is a less good time triallist and a better sprinter which complicates the matter for them.

Edit: it's really time for Brennauer to earn her chance t sprint for the win, if she has enough left. She's one of the best TTers in that group, and the best sprinter in it.

Edit 2: Dani "Marta Cavalli is skipping turns, so she's obviously their protected rider, is probably feeling better than Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig"... well, Dani is usually really good on this kind of thing, but you know, Marta was stronger on both of the last two climbs, and Cecilie is just about the worst sprinter this side of Elisa Longo Borghini, so on a flat run-in for a group finish Marta would be clearly the superior option.
 
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Such an awkward gapm it looks like a lot less than the time gap on the graphic. A lot is going to be about the SD Worx work there, as their issue is that Anna VDB would probably want to escape again from here, Demi is more expendable (on paper at least) but is a less good time triallist and a better sprinter which complicates the matter for them.

Edit: it's really time for Brennauer to earn her chance t sprint for the win, if she has enough left. She's one of the best TTers in that group, and the best sprinter in it.
Yeah, it's a tough spot for VDB. Honestly, Vollering may be their best bet at this point. No way VDB gets across without Brown or ELB.
 
Agree with this entirely. A sprint after 250kms is a whole different ballgame. Although I still feel as if his sprint last year was better than this year. Then again this year's edition was probably harder than last year. So there's that.
Yep, there are "sprints" and there are "sprints after 6 hours in the saddle."

IMO they were clearly the two strongest riders, but I thought Kasper played a better endgame. Mathieu raced really smart for 259.8 kms. He will always beat Asgreen off the line for the first 50-100 meters no matter how tired his legs are, but he got impatient and went from just a little bit too far out.

I don't think Asgreen would have wheel sucked -- he did initate the attack that drew out Van Aert and VdP, and then VdP dropped VA -- so it was pretty clear to me that they were equally strong and equally interested in going to the flamme rouge.

Great race,but I was surprised Wout got dropped so easily.
 
Yeah, it's a tough spot for VDB. Honestly, Vollering may be their best bet at this point. No way VDB gets across without Brown or ELB.
She probably is, in the same way as Cavalli is the better shout for FDJ than Cille at this point.

From the group behind as sprinters I'd expect Brennauer to be best, but Brown, Vollering and Cavalli are all podium shouts from there, on paper. Obviously this is the kind of situation where an ordinarily weak sprinter could still have the advantage because a lot of it just comes down to who has the energy left.
 
Yep, there are "sprints" and there are "sprints after 6 hours in the saddle."

IMO they were clearly the two strongest riders, but I thought Kasper played a better endgame. Mathieu raced really smart for 259.8 kms. He will always beat Asgreen off the line for the first 50-100 meters no matter how tired his legs are, but he got impatient and went from just a little bit too far out.
Asgreen was the one to open the sprint.
 
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ELB isn't working. She can't sprint, so I suspect she will try to jump. She can't justify not working by playing the EvD/Deignan card at this point, and she kinda has to win solo unless she gets away in a two-up with Uttrup, so she kind of has to go away on her own to have a chance, and it's too late now.
 

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