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2017 Flèche Wallone - April 19th - 200.5km

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Re:

MikeTichondrius said:
Lol, I love the Flèche hate. It's reaching Scheldeprijs levels really. :D

I'll never understand the work some teams do on some races. Orica today - why? What for? They were chasing for the most part of the final 30k. For what? An Albasini 5th? The likes of Bala and Martin will always win that head to head.

Yeah they should have backed off and let some other teams take it up. Probably wouldn't have changed the outcome.
 
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DFA123 said:
frisenfruitig said:
Also a good ride by Dylan Theuns.

I just don't see the logic in what teams like Orica were doing. They closed the gap for Valverde when they could have attacked along with Jungels instead of going to the Mur to get f*ed up the keester by Valverde.
The best thing about the race is that the two teams who chanced their arm and sent riders on ambitious long range attacks, still ended up with podium positions from the races. The ones setting up a Valverde win ended up scrapping around for 4th place. :D

Yeah, I was just giggling when I saw Valverde was going to destroy them. Could have turned out differently but they preferred to do nothing and lead themslves to slaughter. Serves them right
 
Re:

hrotha said:
Like lambs to the slaughter. DS's are geniuses.

jpIjXYZ.jpg
 
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me

Because they are all in fear of Valverde, I totally agree with you that they should chance it but Valverde has them on choke chains in this race
 
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me
Exactly. That's why I always loved this race but it seems like no one tries from further down the Mur anymore.
 
Re:

Arredondo said:
The only rider who was able to attack from afar (450 meters) and crack Bala on the steepest slopes, was Purito.

Now all those wannabe riders are waiting till 150 meters, the flatter part, which is Bala's terrain. No single rider is going to beat his sprint on such gradient (4/5%). I'm so disappointed with Henao, he's maybe the only guy who's able to go full out after the steep corner. But he's just a good rider, not a champion.

The current level of puncheurs is quite poor atm. But props for Bala for his 5th win! Legend!

Peak Rebellin would be a feisty one to beat.
 
JRanton said:
That's now 15 out of 17 of this season's world tour races that have been won by just four teams (BMC with 5, Movistar 4, Sky 3 and Quick Step 3). Doesn't leave much for the other 14 teams!
You really don't even have to talk about teams, just the 4 riders. Valverde, Kwia, GVA, and Gilbert have cleaned up this season.
 
Apr 14, 2010
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I've got to say I can't hate on what Valverde does. The guy doesn't waste his time trying to peak for July every year. He goes to races and he races. Hard. No dinking about for that guy.
 
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me
I blame the stupid WT points system - not an epecially original view, I admit. But if you get so many points for a top 10, which in turn will get you a nice big money contract at the end of the year, why risk finishing outside the top 25 by making an attack that probably won't work anyway?
 
Re: Re:

DFA123 said:
frisenfruitig said:
Also a good ride by Dylan Theuns.

I just don't see the logic in what teams like Orica were doing. They closed the gap for Valverde when they could have attacked along with Jungels instead of going to the Mur to get f*ed up the keester by Valverde.
The best thing about the race is that the two teams who chanced their arm and sent riders on ambitious long range attacks, still ended up with podium positions from the races. The ones setting up a Valverde win ended up scrapping around for 4th place. :D
This is actually a very interesting point. QS and BMC did 100% what they had to do. They sent men up the road with riders who are strong on the Mur waiting in the peloton. Now imagine if Kwiatkowski, Kreuziger, Majka and Wellens had followed Jungles. All these riders weren't even the strongest riders of their own team. That break would have been incredibly strong, and which teams would have brought this back? Maybe the group would have gotten caught, but the chances to win for these teams surely would have been better.
 
Re:

therhodeo said:
I've got to say I can't hate on what Valverde does. The guy doesn't waste his time trying to peak for July every year. He goes to races and he races. Hard. No dinking about for that guy.
Absolutely; I don't sense much hate from Valverde here. Him, Jungels and a couple of the youngsters, are pretty much the only riders who are absolutely blameless for his tactics today! Everyone knows what they will get from Valverde, in terms of consistently high level and that he will almost certainly be there and will be firing in the finale - yet still they just play into his hands. :eek:

Immense to credit to him for his consistency and superior ability to everyone else in the race, but equally, shame on everyone else for not at least making him win differently than the previous three years!
 
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Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me

Or Purito. He was the one who attacked early last year (450 meters), despite the fact he was in *** shape.

But also in 2012 and 2015 (Tour) he won by attacking from afar, on the steepest slope.

Now all those wannabe-puncheurs are waiting till the last 150 meters, where it flattens out. That's Bala terrain. The only possibilty to beat him, is by going from afar and putting him into difficulty on gradients above 15%. He's beatable when you do that.

Onfortunately, 99% of the current puncheurs do not have the class to do that. The only guy who should give it a try, is Henao. But he's just a bit of a coward. He just doesn't have the mindset to be a great champion.

Gosh, i miss the Purito, Rebellin, Contador, Evans days :(
 
Re: Re:

Gigs_98 said:
DFA123 said:
frisenfruitig said:
Also a good ride by Dylan Theuns.

I just don't see the logic in what teams like Orica were doing. They closed the gap for Valverde when they could have attacked along with Jungels instead of going to the Mur to get f*ed up the keester by Valverde.
The best thing about the race is that the two teams who chanced their arm and sent riders on ambitious long range attacks, still ended up with podium positions from the races. The ones setting up a Valverde win ended up scrapping around for 4th place. :D
This is actually a very interesting point. QS and BMC did 100% what they had to do. They sent men up the road with riders who are strong on the Mur waiting in the peloton. Now imagine if Kwiatkowski, Kreuziger, Majka and Wellens had followed Jungles. All these riders weren't even the strongest riders of their own team. That break would have been incredibly strong, and which teams would have brought this back? Maybe the group would have gotten caught, but the chances to win for these teams surely would have been better.
Exactly; I said something similar above. And Valverde was isolated at points before the Chevare - and even had to close a gap himself on that climb. There was only Moreno anywhere near and Rojas somewhere hanging onto the back of the peloton. I think one or two more strong riders with Jungels - especially from Sky or Orica - would have tipped the balance in favour of the break.
 
StryderHells said:
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me

Because they are all in fear of Valverde, I totally agree with you that they should chance it but Valverde has them on choke chains in this race

Probably, but by now they should have figured out that doesn't work to wait until the end. You've got to try something different rather than bang your head against a wall.

Sky in particular should have sent either Henao or Kwia early on the Mur, even if it's a suicide attempt. Maybe Bala gets worried and chases at some point and tires himself before the finish and the other guy can try to finish it off? Of course, I'm sure neither would have wanted to be the guy going first but that's what a DS is for. What, they finished 4th and 7th? :eek:
 
Arredondo said:
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me

Or Purito. He was the one who attacked early last year (450 meters), despite the fact he was in **** shape.

But also in 2012 and 2015 (Tour) he won by attacking from afar, on the steepest slope.

Now all those wannabe-puncheurs are waiting till the last 150 meters, where it flattens out. That's Bala terrain. The only possibilty to beat him, is by going from afar and putting him into difficulty on gradients above 15%. He's beatable when you do that.

Onfortunately, 99% of the current puncheurs do not have the class to do that. The only guy who should give it a try, is Henao. But he's just a bit of a coward. He just doesn't have the mindset to be a great champion.

Gosh, i miss the Purito, Rebellin, Contador, Evans days :(
The fastest way up is to ride it at even pace - not like there is really any drafting. Evans always used to go too early until he eventually figured out how to measure his effort. Contador likewise, the only time I remember him in the finale
 
Re: Re:

Netserk said:
jaylew said:
I usually want this race to end with a race up the Mur but the depressing thing lately is that no one is really trying early in the climb. We used to see riders giving it a go from different spots on the Mur and you were never really sure which attack was going to take it.
Say hello to Cherave.
I assume you're saying the riders aren't fresh enough to go early because of Cherave being so close? When did they add it?
 
Arredondo said:
Gigs_98 said:
The most frustrating thing is that it seems like riders don't attack early on the mur anymore. It's okay that this is a race where only one kilometer is interesting but that makes it even more frustrating when not even this one climb is exciting. Why are there no guys like Contador or Betancur anymore who say, f*ck this, I won't wait for Bala to crush me

Or Purito. He was the one who attacked early last year (450 meters), despite the fact he was in **** shape.

But also in 2012 and 2015 (Tour) he won by attacking from afar, on the steepest slope.

Now all those wannabe-puncheurs are waiting till the last 150 meters, where it flattens out. That's Bala terrain. The only possibilty to beat him, is by going from afar and putting him into difficulty on gradients above 15%. He's beatable when you do that.

Onfortunately, 99% of the current puncheurs do not have the class to do that. The only guy who should give it a try, is Henao. But he's just a bit of a coward. He just doesn't have the mindset to be a great champion.

Gosh, i miss the Purito, Rebellin, Contador, Evans days :(
I'd love to know if that tactic would still work the way Valverde races nowdays. For sure a rider like Purito could get a gap on the steepest bit, but I think Valverde used to mess up because he tried to follow immediately and blew up. The last few editions, he just rides it a lot more steady and doesn't seem so bothered about immediately jumping on attacks. Would be great to see a battle between 2012 Purito and this years Valverde, if Purito got the jump and Valverde gradually tried to reel him back in with a more steady effort. Difficult to call I think.

The competition now is just not close enough to compete, whatever they do. Valverde's a better climber than everyone on the start list, apart from possibly Bardet. He's a better hilly puncheur than everyone on the start list on pretty much any gradient above 2%, and he's a better uphill sprinter than any of them. Just crazy for them all to leave it until the Mur.
 

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