Giro d'Italia 2021 Giro d'Italia, Stage 9: Castel di Sangro - Campo Felice (Rocca di Cambio) 158 km (Sunday May 16)

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What will happen on stage 9?

  • Remco will take Pink

    Votes: 12 23.5%
  • At least two of Pellaud, Tagliani, Cepeda and Ponomar will be in the break

    Votes: 12 23.5%
  • Bahrain Victorious

    Votes: 5 9.8%
  • Someone (most likely Dan Martin) will crash in the tunnel just before the sterrato climb

    Votes: 11 21.6%
  • Someone will suffer from back pain

    Votes: 7 13.7%
  • Mollema will be bullied again

    Votes: 3 5.9%
  • Ganna will lead the peloton for 100 km on his own

    Votes: 21 41.2%
  • Thomas De Gendt will avenge the death of Ewan's knee with Einer Rubio in his wheel

    Votes: 6 11.8%
  • Ciccone will attack like a madman

    Votes: 22 43.1%
  • Vino

    Votes: 12 23.5%

  • Total voters
    51
  • Poll closed .
I’ve liked Bernal ever since his 2019 TdF win. It was sad to see his back wreck his 2020 TdF defence and I think too many under rated that win for different reasons. So I am very glad to see him win this stage and announce heis back.

It’s a long way to go and much can go wrong including his back but so far so good.
 
Reactions: spalco
I don't know man, if you see how he broke out in tears after that finish. That looks to me like someone who has been through a lot to reach a competitive level. He could be an amazing actor I guess.
He's a pationate Columbian that has been through alot. He had a credible idea of winning the Tour last year and suffered. I can't get any broadcast but the highlight of the gravel assault spoke volumes about his physical improvement. Now they all have to suffer through the other half of the Giro. What weather would favor his win; more rain or some heat?
 
I could possibly believe Ineos spread some rumours about Bernal's back before the start of the race (like what Bruyneel hinted at), but it seems unlikely to me. Traditionally Ineos (Sky) likes to race from a position of strength, intimidating their opponents into not even thinking about messing up their game plan because resistance is futile anyway. I don't really see how they would have benefited from downplaying Bernal's chances.
 
I could possibly believe Ineos spread some rumours about Bernal's back before the start of the race (like what Bruyneel hinted at), but it seems unlikely to me. Traditionally Ineos (Sky) likes to race from a position of strength, intimidating their opponents into not even thinking about messing up their game plan because resistance is futile anyway. I don't really see how they would have benefited from downplaying Bernal's chances.
The strategy depends on the head rider. Bernal is more labile than Froome or Thomas (see his tears yesterday), thus the downplaying, reducing the pressure.
 
Yeah, maybe. They could have been trying to bait Evenepoel or Yates into doing some suicide solo attacks early. I'm not really buying it, but who knows, it's not impossible.
Nah it's not about baiting attacks that are never gonna happen. It's just about having a little smokescreen until Bernals actual performance shows, which it did. Keep the pressure off a bit, create uncertainty, etc.

Same reason I think Evenepoel didn't race before the Giro. Mindgames, smokescreens.
 
Reactions: IndurainsTdF1994
I don't know, these "mindgames" are often insinuated... yet I think in cycling they don't happen often in this direction (downwards).
Saying Bernal is labile, by the way, because he showed tears... :grimacing:
In general sports psychology works by talking riders up. And it's not easy to tell the rider "yeah, we totally believe in you, of course you won't have much problems, we will only state this in public, so will you, okay?" and make him to fully believe in himself at the same time.
Also you discourage others from preying and exploiting your vulnerability by showing, if only false, strength.
If teams are careful on the outside I think usually they do it because they don't know themselves, and if there are serious reasons to doubt whether things will go well it's better to not expect and make the public expect something from a rider which has a good chance of not working out, because then you are setting up a disappointment which could turn into resentment. So maybe being a bit over-careful in your remarks to the public, yes, but real smokescreens... I don't know.
(Looking at DQS's remarks about Evenepoel being behind because of this tunnel thing it's already quite the other way around, I think. He lost most meters after the tunnel and not in it, so this is talking a small weakness down. I suppose they are now sure he can fight for the win, the general doubts they must have had themselves have probably lessened a good deal.)
 
no way, it was the poor competition that made 2019 bernal; what we are watching is the best of the rest and its fun
Taking the Landa measure, we get +4:23 in 2019 and +5:58 in 2020. Not a huge difference.

No, ofc thats not how this works. But I guess time will tell. I am still rather confident that 2019 Bernal would at least ended up on the podium and also much closer to Pogacar and Roglic than Porte was.
 
Riders forms and performances go up and down all the time that it is very hard to tell if a field is truly weak or not until years later TBH.

Additionally, we cannot ignore the covid year. Things could change again next year. We don't know.
 

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