Cadel Evans Discussion Thread

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Jul 28, 2019
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Idk if this has been adressed here as I only read few pages of this thread but after reading the books of Charly Wegelius and Dominik Nerz Evans seems like the most unlikable team captain you could think of. What's your opinion on that?
 
McEwen wasn't too harsh on Evans either, but did say that he could be a lot of work and wasn't always the best communicator.

He created the impression that Evans would let the pressure of situations get to him.
Yes mostly agree. Except McEwen was riding with Evans at Lotto when he wasn't well supported for GC whatever the reason. Not too many could argue Evans didn't have huge pressure at the 2011 TdF, especially in those closing mountain stages when he took personal responsibility. He was definitely a different rider after he won the worlds and moved to BMC. Far more relaxed on and off the bike. A bit of a shame he discovered this mental state so late in his career. Definitely had talent worthy of more than 1 Grand Tour win.
 
Thanks for the link! Yeh, I knew Philippe and Cadel got on well at Lotto but these comments from Phil really make that obvious.

Interesting that Gilbert mentions the weak GC teams that plagued Evans at Lotto. Ironically it was learning not to rely on his team that was a big factor in his 2011 TdF win. That year the team was picked to make Evans life easier on the flatter stages so when the big mountains arrived Cadel hadn't wasted much energy and he was flying and looking fresh and relaxed most days even when put on the defensive. IMO, it was his ride on stage 18 dropping the entire peloton sans Frank to the highest ever TdF stage finish that won him that Tour.
 
Thanks for the link! Yeh, I knew Philippe and Cadel got on well at Lotto but these comments from Phil really make that obvious.

Interesting that Gilbert mentions the weak GC teams that plagued Evans at Lotto. Ironically it was learning not to rely on his team that was a big factor in his 2011 TdF win. That year the team was picked to make Evans life easier on the flatter stages so when the big mountains arrived Cadel hadn't wasted much energy and he was flying and looking fresh and relaxed most days even when put on the defensive. IMO, it was his ride on stage 18 dropping the entire peloton sans Frank to the highest ever TdF stage finish that won him that Tour.
That was one of the best tour stages of the last 20 years
 
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Along with Alpe d'Huez and the final TT
Agreed. As those stages unfolded I remember thinking surely he was going to crack. On Alpe D'Huez stage, like day before on Galibier he didn't have a hissy fit as he might have done in the past but instead took responsibility went into mountain TT mode and pulled back or minimized the gaps with shear strength and little help from his teammates. On Galibier chasing Andy he pulled back over 2 mins into the headwind with the pack of favourites all on his wheel. Established climbers like Sammy Sanchez couldn't hold on. So strong. The new found confidence after his worlds win and move to BMC I think a big reason why.

I also recall back in his Lotto days Evans copped a lot of flack for being a wheel sucker. But anyone who was able to suck the wheels of AC and Chicken at PDB in 2007 was going okay. Also what he learned in 2011 was to not immediately react to the attacks but rather gradually ride back on - as he was a diesel. On PDB in 2007 Tour with about 5km to the finish Evans blew up and lost 2mins going into the red trying to follow. Meanwhile Levi only lost 60 seconds riding tempo as AC's teammate. Evans went on to finish the 2007 Tdf just 23 seconds down. So 2007 Tdf was definitely a missed opportunity and lost on PDB.
 
Agreed. As those stages unfolded I remember thinking surely he was going to crack. On Alpe D'Huez stage, like day before on Galibier he didn't have a hissy fit as he might have done in the past but instead took responsibility went into mountain TT mode and pulled back or minimized the gaps with shear strength and little help from his teammates. On Galibier chasing Andy he pulled back over 2 mins into the headwind with the pack of favourites all on his wheel. Established climbers like Sammy Sanchez couldn't hold on. So strong. The new found confidence after his worlds win and move to BMC I think a big reason why.

I also recall back in his Lotto days Evans copped a lot of flack for being a wheel sucker. But anyone who was able to suck the wheels of AC and Chicken at PDB in 2007 was going okay. Also what he learned in 2011 was to not immediately react to the attacks but rather gradually ride back on - as he was a diesel. On PDB in 2007 Tour with about 5km to the finish Evans blew up and lost 2mins going into the red trying to follow. Meanwhile Levi only lost 60 seconds riding tempo as AC's teammate. Evans went on to finish the 2007 Tdf just 23 seconds down. So 2007 Tdf was definitely a missed opportunity and lost on PDB.
I watched the entirety of the 2007 TDF, there were a couple of opportunities for Evans to have attacked in the both the Pyrenees and Alps on the most technical stages, if he dared. Nerves got the better of him and he tried to TT his way to the win.

2008 Evans was even worse again. His ride on Alpe d'Huez was utterly pathetic and downright painful to watch. Nobody will ever win a Tour title with a ride like that. Evans also did himself no favours at all by holding that 1" lead so aggressively when CSC were so, so strong. I remember watching Lotto fanned out on the front, blocking the entire road for Evans while O'Grady, Arvesen and Voigt were right behind laughing in amazement. The fact Evans still came second that year is utterly astonishing.

Having said that, if Ricco didn't fly so close to the sun he'd have destroyed the lot of them on one leg, but that's a clinic conversation.
 
2008 Evans was even worse again. His ride on Alpe d'Huez was utterly pathetic and downright painful to watch. Nobody will ever win a Tour title with a ride like that. Evans also did himself no favours at all by holding that 1" lead so aggressively when CSC were so, so strong. I remember watching Lotto fanned out on the front, blocking the entire road for Evans while O'Grady, Arvesen and Voigt were right behind laughing in amazement. The fact Evans still came second that year is utterly astonishing.
I don't entirely agree about 2008 and particularly the Alpe. On stage 9 he had a huge fall when a Euskaltel rider fell right in front of him and lost a lot of skin. Many people forget or discount the significance of that crash when they talk about 2008. In my view this is what cost him strength on the Alpe and the final TT. I think it was Vaughters who said Evans ride to defend yellow the following day to Hautacam with those injuries was heroic? IMO the fact he still finished second on GC was very impressive and testimony to his true strength.
 

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