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By far their best race of the season, getting two riders in the top 10 of the Vuelta. But is that enough for a WT team? Especially when their highest placed rider specifically peaked for and targetted this race - yet still finished 8 minutes down on the winner and was never in contention for the podium.

Still no WT wins in 2016, and with one team probably having to step down from the WT next season - it seems harsh that it will probably be Dimension Data - who have animated numerous races and got loads of wins - instead of Cannondale - who have not.
 
Which were the races that Dimension Data have animated? They've got plenty of wins from sprints, but that doesn't count as animating the race in my book. Cummings has got a few wins WT from breakaways and that's it. If anyone, it were Cannondale who were using team-work to animate some stages during the Romandie, Giro etc they were also very active in San Sebastian and Plouay. Maybe there were races in which DDD did the same, but I don't recall out of my head, so I ask for examples.

Being WT-worthy team is also about depth and Cannondale beats some other WT teams hands down in that aspect. Even during the season in which everybody complains how poor they are, they were outnumbering pretty much every other team in the mountains in 2 out of 3 GTs and they'll end up with the amount of WT points that allows them to put safely a couple of other teams behind. As far as I can see, there is even a chance they'll be top10 in teams ranking with Vuelta points counted if they don't lose a lot of points to the wrong teams in Montreal. And the points system is not doing them any favours, because if it counted points from all riders instead ot the best 5, they would've gained more than most. Mind you, being WT is not about shining in few important races during the year, as you can do it as a pro-conti team, but about being able to line-up a decent team for every race in the calendar. I think there are a lot of races in which teams like FDJ or Lotto-Jumbo have largely inferior line-ups compared to teams like Cannondale. I think there are better candidates for relegation if you insist Dimension Data should be kept as WT.

Keep in mind that Cannondale are keeping all of their best riders for 2017 and are bringing in Vanmarcke. Also some riders seem to be back on the track recently, so there is very good chance that the next year will be better than the current one for them, if the current one is not enough to warrant them a WT status. The lack of WT wins is circumstancial to some extent (they were so close a couple of times: Quebec, Plouay, stage 18 during the Giro) and should not be used as the main argument against the WT status for Cannondale and other arguments also don't seem convincing for me.

One big loss for Cannondale for 2017 will be Moser. He has not achieved many results for himself, but his versatility makes him awesome GT domestique. I want to appreciate his dedication and hard work for his team-mates during this Vuelta even though he knows he will be riding for other team next year.

I also think the team is using some tricks that allows their riders to recover well in GTs, because it's a pattern for many years that their riders improve quite significantly in 3rd week.
 
Great point about Vanmarcke - that's the kind of signing that shows great intent for next year. I also agree to an extent about DD - I don't like them and their often parasitic way of racing and would be happy for them to lose WT status; but I think it's an interesting debate. Despite (or perhaps because of their style) they have won quite a few WT races with Cummings & Cavendish, plus a GT mountains jersey with Fraile. Cannondale have won nothing at WT level and seem to have prioritised placings and breaks while very rarely threatening to win. It's almost like they've played the system to get a lot of points, but while missing what cycling should all be about.

Also true that FDJ and Lotto Jumbo put out some awful teams at times. But they do also win things and are very competitive at the sharp end of races with their A team. LottoNL almost won the Giro, FDJ won Milan Sanremo and a lot else with Pinot. Even with their best team Cannondale just isn't competing at the highest level in the most prestigious WT races.

I imagine they will keep WT status, because they've got enough UCI points - especially with Vanmarcke coming. But it feels to me at times like they are more interested in playing the UCI points system, than in actually trying to do as well as possible in races. Still prefer their way to the way of DD - but there is a middle ground where you can work hard, animate races and still get a few good wins.
 
Re:

DFA123 said:
Cannondale have won nothing at WT level and seem to have prioritised placings and breaks while very rarely threatening to win. It's almost like they've played the system to get a lot of points, but while missing what cycling should all be about.
(...)
But it feels to me at times like they are more interested in playing the UCI points system, than in actually trying to do as well as possible in races. Still prefer their way to the way of DD - but there is a middle ground where you can work hard, animate races and still get a few good wins.
I'm not sure if I can agree with these claims. Have you seen Quebec GP? Uran did everything right to win the race, just lacked that tiny bit of strength or hesitation in the main group that you can't predict before you try. Have you seen the Giro? Cannondale driving the breaks day after day hoping to win something. It didn't work out but you can't accuse them of not trying. That's surely not riding for placing.
Of course sometimes you ride for placings because you know your limitations and if you can't win, it's better to finish 6th than nowhere. But that happens to every team. For example Talansky was never going to win the Vuelta, the route didn't suit him (as he doesn't like explosive climbs and there was only one high-mountain stage in 3rd week where he could use his great recovery) and there are better GT riders than him ATM and Movistar was too strong not to bring any dangerous early attack back. He rode very intelligent race to 5th overall, which seems to be even better result than one would expect looking at his performance of many particular climbs in isolation and he would not do any better trying to be more aggressive. But I'm sure if there was an opportunity, he would go for it like he did in 2014 Dauphine.
For example Navardauskas is a rider who often goes to a breakaway despite having a decent finish, because he would rather take a 5% chance to get a solo win than sprint to for an almost certain 6th.
They don't stand that bad with WT points not because they always go for placing instead of trying to win, but because they have many decent riders who will grab a result here and there even if the stars didn't allign for an impressive top end result this year. I'm sure that one day they'll get their preparation more right than they did this season and they'll be a threat for a win in some or other decent race. When you don't have riders like Froome, Quintana, Sagan or Valverde, things get more circumnstantial and even as great rider as Sagan had been in trouble to get a really big win for months in the past.
 
Would you say it is a lack of strategy then to some extent? They just seem to flood breaks hoping that one of them will stick and pick up some WT points, rather than specifically targetting GT stages or classics for the win. You're right that Uran nearly grabbed a win the other day, but to have not even taken a GT stage with riders like Uran, Rolland, Moser, Navardauskas and Formolo is more than disappointing imo.

You may be right that it's not a conscious decision to hunt points instead of wins; but in that case then serious questions surely have to be asked about the management and team planning.
 
Rolland has been a big disappointment for me. I doubt he will find his old level again... I think Cannondale has done very well in Giro + Vuelta which were the races they targeted, just unlucky not to get at least a stage. A very good bunch, just lack top end level, but surely a lot better than many other teams out there.

They get top end level next year in Vanmarcke. He should be able to win a WT classic.
 
Re:

yaco said:
Cannondale's had a much better year in 2016, than in 2015 - You don't always get what you deserve in sport.
That's it. They got a WT win in 2015 despite clearly performing worse all season included. Lady luck is not on their side this year, but this will not last forever.

I still can't believe how good has Bettiol turned out to be this season. :surprised: This gets me some hope that the team will still be able to get it right regarding the rider's development in some cases.
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

Cannondale are now 9th (!) in UCI World Tour Team Ranking after sitting 16th just several days ago and being mentioned in one of the articles as the team occupying the last safe spot in the ranking with 2017 licenses in mind.

To think that in 2014 they finished the season on 11th place in the same ranking, despite having 8 WT wins, including some big ones like Lombardia and Dauphine overall. Dan Martin alone scored almost twice as many points as the best Cannondale rider this season (Bettiol). And he was not the only Garmin's rider who scored some fat WT points that year. I know the season is not over yet but vast majority of points has already been awarded. What does it show?
I think it shows that the bigger percentage of success is now accumulated by lesser amount of teams than it was just few years ago. Which is not necessarily good from entertainment point of view IMO.
 
Re:

DFA123 said:
By far their best race of the season, getting two riders in the top 10 of the Vuelta. But is that enough for a WT team? Especially when their highest placed rider specifically peaked for and targetted this race - yet still finished 8 minutes down on the winner and was never in contention for the podium.

Still no WT wins in 2016, and with one team probably having to step down from the WT next season - it seems harsh that it will probably be Dimension Data - who have animated numerous races and got loads of wins - instead of Cannondale - who have not.
5 Tour stages is hardly loads of wins for the year. Just loads of wins in the year's most visible race ;)

Apart from the TDF, EBH at Roubaix and some breakaways by Cummings in a couple of 1 week races, DD have not done much at all. They needed to keep Meintjes, or sign someone for Fraile, Haas, Teklehaimanot and co to support in the GTs. Kreuziger would have been a good choice, maybe they should try and sign someone like Thomas.

At least Cannondale has genuine depth, it's very surprising they haven't had a WT win with the likes of Uran, Rolland, Talansky, Formolo, Clarke etc. With a year to gel, hopefully most of them fire and get things started.
 
Oct 10, 2015
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Re: Cannondale-Drapac

IzzyStradlin said:
Where in the f has Phil Gaimon been? Is he only employed to make cookie jokes on the internet?
Where has he been? Well he raced Alberta which finished on the 5th of this month and just before that he raced Utah so hes been active over the last 2 months, he's raced 46 days so far this season.
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

StryderHells said:
IzzyStradlin said:
Where in the f has Phil Gaimon been? Is he only employed to make cookie jokes on the internet?
Where has he been? Well he raced Alberta which finished on the 5th of this month and just before that he raced Utah so hes been active over the last 2 months, he's raced 46 days so far this season.
Better question: where the f has Nathan Brown been?
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

For Cannondale it looks like:
Navardauskas :arrow: Vanmarcke
Bauer :arrow: Phinney
Cardoso :arrow: Carthy

Some good riders leaving, but those who replace them definetely represent higher potential. Good thing with Phinney is that Vaughters wants him to target the TdF's opening TT in 2017, so maybe they'll find a way to perform better in TTs overall as a team, as it was, with few exceptions, their big weakness in 2016.
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

GenericBoonenFan said:
StryderHells said:
IzzyStradlin said:
Where in the f has Phil Gaimon been? Is he only employed to make cookie jokes on the internet?
Where has he been? Well he raced Alberta which finished on the 5th of this month and just before that he raced Utah so hes been active over the last 2 months, he's raced 46 days so far this season.
Better question: where the f has Nathan Brown been?
He was pretty good in some Giro mountain stages. I had never heard of him and thought he did ok there.
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

ciranda said:
He was pretty good in some Giro mountain stages. I had never heard of him and thought he did ok there.
The point is why he hasn't done a single race-day since the Giro. I assume some sort of health issues but that's just guessing. I've asked Cannondale about that via social media but got no response.
 
Re: Cannondale-Drapac

Anderis said:
ciranda said:
He was pretty good in some Giro mountain stages. I had never heard of him and thought he did ok there.
The point is why he hasn't done a single race-day since the Giro. I assume some sort of health issues but that's just guessing. I've asked Cannondale about that via social media but got no response.
:idea: I thought the comment above was about if he's a good cyclist or not.
 
Apr 7, 2009
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Re: Cannondale-Drapac

Anderis said:
For Cannondale it looks like:
Navardauskas :arrow: Vanmarcke
Bauer :arrow: Phinney
Cardoso :arrow: Carthy

Some good riders leaving, but those who replace them definetely represent higher potential. Good thing with Phinney is that Vaughters wants him to target the TdF's opening TT in 2017, so maybe they'll find a way to perform better in TTs overall as a team, as it was, with few exceptions, their big weakness in 2016.
Has anyone heard what Ben King's plans are for next year?
 

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