Come on Chris let's shoot for a top 50 today
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He has the level to finish a professional bike race (2.1 level like Coppi e Bartali), even if he's close to the bottom. Considering his age, history, form etc. this is probably his level.
I'm not joking either when I say I believe he does still have some endurance qualities in him, i.e. he finished the Tour de France last summer as well. So as an "athlete", he's probably quite fit.
He just has no real climbing strength when the road goes up & no speed either so he can't actually "race" his bike. But he can ride around for hours & finish closer to the pros than a cyclotourist could. Granted, that's probably not why Israel are paying him, but it is what it is.
I go along with this.
Remember at the TdF 2021 ISN were kind of scratching their heads regarding Froome because he was never tired after completing a stage, but did not compete in them either.
This was not written for a cycling audience, but this week The Times let their readers know what is happening with Chris Froome.
Chris Froome: Diminished, fighting at the back – but still striving to regain former powers
Nearly 37, the four-times Tour de France winner has shown no signs of losing appetite for racing, but he has made little progress, John Westerby writes
There has been no indication from Chris Froome, who turns 37 in two months, that the appetite to regain his former powers is waning. He is back in racing action this week for the first time this year, knocking off the rust with his Israel Premier-Tech team at the five-day Coppi e Bartali stage race in Italy, a delayed start to his season after he suffered a knee tendon injury.
In the first stage on Tuesday, Froome rolled in 15 minutes behind the stage winner, Mauro Schmid. On Wednesday, after more than four hours on an undulating stage, he found himself a further 21 minutes back as Ethan Hayter, of Ineos Grenadiers, claimed a stage win on a steep final climb. None of Froome’s performances come as a surprise, given the knee injury and his lack of racing time, but they are a sign that the struggles he has endured since that horrific crash in 2019 are far from over.
“[It] was a bit of a shock to the system after five months of not racing,” Froome said after the opening day. “The stages here are very much like Ardennes races, with two to three-kilometre climbs over and over again. It’s tough racing, but I think that this is a good way for me to start and hopefully for me to look ahead to the races coming up. I think I’m going to take it day by day and just see how things are going.”
When you have scaled the heights like Froome — who won the Tour de France four times, the Vuelta a España twice and the Giro d’Italia once — how much longer can you gain satisfaction from life back in the peloton? There is a balance to be struck, clearly, in the simple enjoyment of competing, of riding a bike in a team enterprise, but how long will the hunger remain to keep pushing his body in the punishing manner required of a professional road racer away from the heat of competition, when the rewards may only be to compete as a diminished performer?
Every athlete craves the opportunity to bow out on their own terms. The crash and serious injuries that he suffered during the build-up to the Critérium du Dauphiné three years ago have clearly reduced Froome’s chances of bowing out at the top, and the two seasons since his accident have given scant encouragement that he will be able to compete for grand tour victories again.
There is undoubtedly motivation for Froome to continue in the short term, not least a salary of €5.5 million (about £4.6 million) from Israel Premier-Tech, the team he joined last year from Ineos Grenadiers. In the week he returned to racing Cycling Weekly published a list of the highest earners in the sport, and Froome still sits in second place in that list. Tadej Pogacar, the Slovenian who has won the Tour de France for the past two years, is the only rider earning more, and the highest-earning Ineos riders are Geraint Thomas, on €3.5 million, and Egan Bernal, on €2.8 million, another who has suffered serious injuries in a recent crash. Thomas, a year younger than Froome but still approaching the final stages of his career, is also in action at Coppi e Bartali this week.
After his departure from Ineos, Froome was a signature signing for an ambitious team and his very presence in races generates plenty of attention for Israel-Premier Tech and their sponsors, even if he is primarily back in the pack. There is a grim fascination for spectators in seeing a former great attempting to recapture the form of his younger days.
The rest of his racing programme for this season is yet to be determined and will depend on his form in the coming weeks. But it must be hoped that Froome can regain some semblance of his former glories and that the final chapters of his time as a professional bear some of the hallmarks of one of the sport’s all-time greats, rather than merely being shaped by the after-effects of a career-changing crash.
If he is getting that much rub he needs a new mechanic. Granted I don't come down mountain passes, but all of my riding is in the dirt (dust on everything). After a quick cleaning and adjustment I can usually go about 30 rides before I need another quick cleaning and adjustment. When one piston does hang up, I don't get rub, I get less breaking power. Sometimes a quick squirt from the water bottle can be enough to fix a slightly sticky piston.