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European Championships 2023: Road Races (September 22-24)

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I don't understand any of the WvA criticism. He was clearly the best of the chasers, the only mistake was that Laporte was too far out (either because of pacing, Laporte being very strong, a bit too much soft pedalling in the chase group at times, or a combination of all).

He counted on his sprint and this time (just like e.g. 2nd stage of TdF) he was the fastest so counting on his sprint was a good tactic (while it ofcourse isn't always the best tactic). Suggesting they should have had De Lie sprinting or have taken another sprinter is imho pretty irrelevant , because you cannot know if they would have done a better sprint, and as said, WvA's sprint was as good as it gets but Laporte had a gap that was just a bit too big to close sprinting.
 
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I don't understand any of the WvA criticism. He was clearly the best of the chasers, the only mistake was that Laporte was too far out (either because of pacing, Laporte being very strong, a bit too much soft pedalling in the chase group at times, or a combination of all).

But I'd argue that was a pretty fundamental mistake to make, they left it far too late to chase Laporte down, either underestimating Laportes ability to hold out there, or how much effort and time the chase down would need.

The result was the same, they simply ran out of kms in the end, and only a monster effort brought it back so it looked more marginal than it really was.

That's a race WvA should have won but didn't and I think that's why there is stronger criticism of him or the Belgian team tactics, as its becoming a habit for them, what were they thinking when they let Laporte go? what were WvA and De Lie doing with 5-8km to go ? Etc etc