Binck BankTour 29 september - 3 october

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A whole day of raining gives you Mads Pedersen as the winner. Simple as that.

Ackermann quite easily overtaken by the two young sprinters, again. Merlier really fast, but from much too far. Good sprint by Stybar too.
 
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Ackermann just determined to approach these sprints in the least advantageous way possible. That’s twice in a row he’s led out a loooong sprint and died before the finishing line.
It's really strange for Ackermann to make the same mistake twice in such a short time. I also have the impression that Selig really has a bad year. His leadouts for Ackermann lack both speed and endurance, forcing Ackermann to go early and long.
 
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It's really strange for Ackermann to make the same mistake twice in such a short time. I also have the impression that Selig really has a bad year. His leadouts for Ackermann lack both speed and endurance, forcing Ackermann to go early and long.
Yeah, definitely. He’s very much at his best when his train delivers him to 150-200 metres in good position and all he has to do is turn on the speed. If he has to adapt to a bad lead out, well a lot of the time he just doesn’t adapt. And the leadouts in both stages finished way too early.

Bora’s whole job here should be to avoid the sprint turning into an extended hard man test of sustained power and yet they’ve twice turned it into that themselves.
 
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There's a fine line between early and too early.
If you win, it wasn't too early.
Hierarchically, 'too early' is a subcategory of 'early'. So technically, Ackermann started his sprint early today, just like Pedersen started his sprint early in Poland. However, the outcome has been the same in both instances, suggesting that, all else equal, one rider is able to launch a long sprint and one is not.
 
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So what's up with classics riders (Pedersen, Van Aert, Van der Poel) becoming elite sprinters this year?
Ironically makes me think of 2015, when both cobbled monuments were won by bunch sprinters, no real likeliness for attackers to win San Remo, and Matthew for a moment looked the favorite to win Amstel Gold sprint.
 
Van der Poel isn't. He doesn't win bunch sprints, although he win uphill and small group sprints regularly, and was/is considered very fast rider, faster than his CX collegue Van Aert up until recently...
Actually, Pedersen is impressing me even more than Van der Poel. I thought of him like a hard man with a good sprint but not an elite one, but this year he is one of the best sprinters in the peloton. He just won his second bunch sprint and was 2nd multiple times.
 
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Curious to see how Van der Poel performs tomorrow. After what he showed in the Tirreno Adriatico he must be one of the favourites.
Let's also see how well is Pedersen's time trial.
 
So what's up with classics riders (Pedersen, Van Aert, Van der Poel) becoming elite sprinters this year?
Like Blanco, I’m not really sure that MVDP has quite shown that yet, but it’s an interesting question. I think there’s probably a couple of different things at work. Firstly, there’s a bit of coincidence at work where some guys just turned out to have more speed than expected. And secondly, sprints are very chaotic currently with no really dominant trains imposing the kind of order that makes it very difficult to beat the top specialists. Theres more opportunity for fast guys with good bike handling and the ability to sustain a long power sprint, even if they don’t have top tier sprinter acceleration. That maybe helps explain Demare’s resurgence too.

That said, Pedersen won that today as a traditional sprinter. He was in the right wheels until very late and then just came around Philipsen with a last moment acceleration.
 
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Van der Poel isn't. He doesn't win bunch sprints, although he win uphill and small group sprints regularly, and was/is considered very fast rider, faster than his CX collegue Van Aert up until recently...
He does win bunch sprints, quite frequently actually. But usually not against top competitors (he also doesn't often ride races where he faces those). He did beat Cees Bol in Britain last year. Since 2018 he's beaten guys like Trentin, van Poppel, Teunissen, and guys that calibre more than once. In 2018 he beat Bouhanni & Merlier. In 2017 he beat van Aert in Baloise, and got beaten by van Aert in Bruges.
 

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