2020 World Championships - now confirmed for Imola, Italy.

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Has anyone ever had a run of results anything like WVA this year? Two big classics wins, followed by two tour stage sprint wins alongside some incredible super dom climbing and 2nd in hilly tt and then 2nd in WC tt?

In the age of specialisation, there has been nothing remotely like it. Even outside of this age, it is historically amazing.
If you have those strict parameters, probably not. But JA last year and GvA, and PG come to mind as guys who have had similar runs in recent years.
 
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He gave the reason why there are more professional female riders now than some decades ago: The looks and what you wear is more important now in cycling. To have a nice looking bike, a chic helmet, a nice kit... so more women are attracted to cycling.
I won't say that is or isn't a reason for women getting into cycling, but now that I've got her biking, I can't stop my wife casting envious glances at some other lady's fancy polka dot jersey, matching bar tape, etc etc.

In fairness, if we're playing the gender stereotype game, it's not a million miles away from me always wanting a newer, lighter groupset, newer lighter wheels, a new gravel bike, etc etc.

And ultimately, whatever gets people riding bikes is a good thing.
 
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Has anyone ever had a run of results anything like WVA this year? Two big classics wins, followed by two tour stage sprint wins alongside some incredible super dom climbing and 2nd in hilly tt and then 2nd in WC tt?

In the age of specialisation, there has been nothing remotely like it. Even outside of this age, it is historically amazing.

Valverde's 2018 results are likely as close as you'll get, but still very different.

Earlier era's Sean Kelly likely had a season along these lines.
 
He gave the reason why there are more professional female riders now than some decades ago: The looks and what you wear is more important now in cycling. To have a nice looking bike, a chic helmet, a nice kit... so more women are attracted to cycling.
was it Migels who said it, or Lichtenberg? Because Lichtenberg (husband of Claudia Lichtenberg, née Häusler) is normally a very knowledgeable expert for Women's cycling.
 
Tbh if Elisa closes the door at the start of the sprint, that would have been perfectly fair, no idea why she left the gap open there.
Because sprinting for her own aims is pretty much something that Elisa never does; she either finishes solo or she sacrifices her own finish aims to set up Deignan. She only ever wins in a head to head with anyone if there is a deal done (like with van der Breggen in the Giro, who got the jersey because she and ELB worked together, so ELB got the stage win) or uphill (like the two wins on San Luca outbursting Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio in the last few hundred metres). The only other non-solo wins I could find in her entire career were a mountain stage of the Emakumeen Euskal Bira in 2013 which she won from a group of 4 in which Emma Johansson was the only one who even remotely could sprint (and may well have been uphill, I can't find a profile now), and a two-up against Elena Berlato in the Trophée d'Or in 2014.

Elisa Longo Borghini is a great bike rider and I really enjoy her racing, but asking her to set up a sprint would be like asking Bob Stapleton to mastermind a team long-distance mountain breakaway like Heras to Pajares, just completely out of her element.
 
was it Migels who said it, or Lichtenberg? Because Lichtenberg (husband of Claudia Lichtenberg, née Häusler) is normally a very knowledgeable expert for Women's cycling.
I'm quite sure it was Karsten Migels, but I wouldn't swear, I only listened with half an ear and only suddenly was like "what?"

I won't say that is or isn't a reason for women getting into cycling, but now that I've got her biking, I can't stop my wife casting envious glances at some other lady's fancy polka dot jersey, matching bar tape, etc etc.

In fairness, if we're playing the gender stereotype game, it's not a million miles away from me always wanting a newer, lighter groupset, newer lighter wheels, a new gravel bike, etc etc.

And ultimately, whatever gets people riding bikes is a good thing.
I agree with your last sentence, but I doubt that is an important reason for female (pro) cycling getting more important nowadays. I don't know any professional female cyclists, but for instance the female artist's scene is also bigger and more pro today. Is that because the vernissage's fashion is more important nowadays?

Women can be competetive and be eager to push their bodies to the limit as well, and since there is less and less social resistance against that and more appreciation for extremely ambitious females, girls can see a future in this, at least more than before. And I think there are more parents who are supportive of their daughters if they want to go this way.

Personally I just came back from a ride, muddy all-over as always, I like to dress up sometimes and I love fashion, but not when I cycle. I have a very average black/grey bike, nothing fancy about my equipment at all, some old shoes... while my male neighbour has two fancy bikes, always perfectly cleaned cycling shoes and everything.
When it comes to sports equipment I have not experienced women caring more about it than men, on the contrary (except in the gym).
 
My stars for the men's race:

**** *Van Aert, Alaphilippe, Fuglsang
****Pogacar, Roglic, Valverde
***Kwiatkowski, Schachmann, Hirschi, Matthews
**Nibali, Ulissi, Van Avermaet, Woods, Porte, Kuss
*Bennett, Pidcock, Dumoulin, Mas, LL Sánchez, D. Martínez, Lutsenko
 
My stars for the men's race:

**** *Van Aert, Alaphilippe, Fuglsang
****Pogacar, Roglic, Valverde
***Kwiatkowski, Schachmann, Hirschi, Matthews
**Nibali, Ulissi, Van Avermaet, Woods, Porte, Kuss
*Bennett, Pidcock, Dumoulin, Mas, LL Sánchez, D. Martínez, Lutsenko
Hm, mine, now:

**** * van Aert
**** Pogacar
*** Fuglsang
** Woods, Valverde
* Kwiatkowski, Alaphilippe, Schachmann, Hirschi, an Italian

and I know now I should never write off Richie Porte!
 
I’ve just noticed that Dan Martin isn’t riding. A couple of years ago he’d have been considered a favourite on a course like this. So Ireland qualified six but only three are riding, one of whom is an espoir and another an 80kg TTist. Cycling Ireland didn’t send a team at all to the women’s events.
 
I'm quite sure it was Karsten Migels, but I wouldn't swear, I only listened with half an ear and only suddenly was like "what?"



I agree with your last sentence, but I doubt that is an important reason for female (pro) cycling getting more important nowadays. I don't know any professional female cyclists, but for instance the female artist's scene is also bigger and more pro today. Is that because the vernissage's fashion is more important nowadays?

Women can be competetive and be eager to push their bodies to the limit as well, and since there is less and less social resistance against that and more appreciation for extremely ambitious females, girls can see a future in this, at least more than before. And I think there are more parents who are supportive of their daughters if they want to go this way.
Or even, more simplistically, the more chance women have to see women's bike racing and get inspired by what they see, the more chance they have of wanting to get into it. For years it was kind of racing in the dark. More races are broadcast (even if sometimes you have to go to some effort to find them or wait for the highlights later while mining social media for information in real time), more teams are professional, more races have currency and value intrinsic, and there's more chance for an athletically-minded young girl to see the sport and think that this is something they want to do, and actively choose cycling as the discipline they want to follow. The classic 'if you build it they will come'.
 
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