Eurosport commentary

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I think I heard Kirby saying, in the stage to Prato di Tivo, that the helicopter camera was looking for Chamois.
Great, I thought. Some mountain goats in a scenic landscape.

The next Kirby said was: Chamois are some kind of big rodents with 2 big front teeth... I suddenly realized he was mixing chamois with marmots.

I realize not everybody knows what a Chamois is, but before pretending to know what it is, do your homework please!
 
I think I heard Kirby saying, in the stage to Prato di Tivo, that the helicopter camera was looking for Chamois.
Great, I thought. Some mountain goats in a scenic landscape.

The next Kirby said was: Chamois are some kind of big rodents with 2 big front teeth... I suddenly realized he was mixing chamois with marmots.

I realize not everybody knows what a Chamois is, but before pretending to know what it is, do your homework please!
Tbf, Kirby appears not to know his arse from his elbow, so it's a stretch to expect him to know his chamois from his Marmot.
 
Usually, I am very happy about the Danish commentators but I have to say that Brian Holm is getting increasingly annoying and I would say he spends 75-80 % of the time talking about all kind of crap that is completely irrelevant, ans his companion, Thomas Bay, is not very effective in preventing him from doing so, even if he is aware there is a problem.
 
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Well, to be frank, i didn't automatically assume Ganna was going to win but it would 've been most likely i guess. However, van Aert "only" finished about half a minute down at the WCC, the smallest margin between winner and runner up in some years. While the context is important, since van Aert came out of the TDF where he was working each and every day, while Ganna had an ideal prep towards the WCC. Then, knowing van Aert is supposed to be in top shape in 2 weeks, while Ganna is not, you know something like this could easily happen. The moment Küng beat Ganna's time, i was kind of expecting van Aert to beat both.

I also find it remarkable that everybody simply assumed Ganna turned into some unbeatable force overnight, at the exact same time as Evenepoel got injured. As if Ganna acquired superpowers the moment Evenepoel fell off a bridge somewhere. Ganna was beaten by Dennis and Evenepoel at the previous WCC, by a much larger margin by both, than he beat van Aert by. He was beaten by Evenepoel at the Euro's. He was beaten by van Emden at Chrono des Nations, and then he was beaten again by Evenepoel in San Juan. Evenepoel continued to beat Dennis in Algarve, then he crashed and Ganna became "unbeatable".

That said, i would not read too much into it. It's simply what commentators do (maybe have to do). Whenever somebody wins it's "a staggering performance" and everything is in hyperbole. Take van Aert's win for example, Sporza described it as he "blows Ganna & Küng away"... ok, he won by 6 seconds. While an amazing performance on its own against these two and on a short itt, he didn't exactly blow them away, imho. Roglic was unbeatable, set in stone, until he lost. Both the Giro, TDF and PN. Those races didn't have to be raced basically. Yet they had and he lost them all.

I think it's also important to note that such behavior by commentators tends to annoy us a lot quicker when talking about other riders, than the riders we support. Maybe i can't speak for everyone, but i'm sure more often than not, that's the case.
 
Well, to be frank, i didn't automatically assume Ganna was going to win but it would 've been most likely i guess. However, van Aert "only" finished about half a minute down at the WCC, the smallest margin between winner and runner up in some years. While the context is important, since van Aert came out of the TDF where he was working each and every day, while Ganna had an ideal prep towards the WCC. Then, knowing van Aert is supposed to be in top shape in 2 weeks, while Ganna is not, you know something like this could easily happen. The moment Küng beat Ganna's time, i was kind of expecting van Aert to beat both.

I also find it remarkable that everybody simply assumed Ganna turned into some unbeatable force overnight, at the exact same time as Evenepoel got injured. As if Ganna acquired superpowers the moment Evenepoel fell off a bridge somewhere. Ganna was beaten by Dennis and Evenepoel at the previous WCC, by a much larger margin by both, than he beat van Aert by. He was beaten by Evenepoel at the Euro's. He was beaten by van Emden at Chrono des Nations, and then he was beaten again by Evenepoel in San Juan. Evenepoel continued to beat Dennis in Algarve, then he crashed and Ganna became "unbeatable".

That said, i would not read too much into it. It's simply what commentators do (maybe have to do). Whenever somebody wins it's "a staggering performance" and everything is in hyperbole. Take van Aert's win for example, Sporza described it as he "blows Ganna & Küng away"... ok, he won by 6 seconds. While an amazing performance on its own against these two and on a short itt, he didn't exactly blow them away, imho. Roglic was unbeatable, set in stone, until he lost. Both the Giro, TDF and PN. Those races didn't have to be raced basically. Yet they had and he lost them all.

I think it's also important to note that such behavior by commentators tends to annoy us a lot quicker when talking about other riders, than the riders we support. Maybe i can't speak for everyone, but i'm sure more often than not, that's the case.
Maybe Ganna shaving like 30 seconds off the record in the San Benedetto del Tronto TT, which is basically an annual meet-up of the best TTers in the world, had a tiny thing to do with the perception of him as having emerged as "an unbeatable force".

I know it's your two favourite riders who might rival him here, but come on. If you can't see the difference between pre- and post-covid break Ganna, I don't know what to tell you.
 
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Maybe Ganna shaving like 30 seconds off the record in the San Benedetto del Tronto TT, which is basically an annual meet-up of the best TTers in the world, had a tiny thing to do with the perception of him as having emerged as "an unbeatable force".

I know it's your two favourite riders who might rival him here, but come on. If you can't see the difference between pre- and post-covid break Ganna, I don't know what to tell you.
Hmm, and the fact that Campenaerts also shattered that same record, didn't set some alarmbells off?

The fact that Ganna beat van Aert by a relative small margin at the WCC, considering the difficult circumstances for van Aert, further showed that post-covid Ganna was not as dominant as he was made out to be.
 
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Hmm, and the fact that Campenaerts also shattered that same record, didn't set some alarmbells off?

The fact that Ganna beat van Aert by a relative small margin at the WCC, considering the difficult circumstances for van Aert, further showed that post-covid Ganna was not as dominant as he was made out to be.
Yep, Van Aert really looked like he was struggling towards the end of the Tour and at the World Championships...
 
Yep, Van Aert really looked like he was struggling towards the end of the Tour and at the World Championships...
Sorry Toby, you're gonna have to do better than this. I never said van Aert was struggling, but there is a huge difference between having an ideal prep, and finishing a hard TDF a week before. If you don't think that has an impact, then i don't know what to tell you. Just because he didn't blow like Roglic in 2019, doesn't mean conditions favored him like they did Ganna.
 
Sorry Toby, you're gonna have to do better than this. I never said van Aert was struggling, but there is a huge difference between having an ideal prep, and finishing a hard TDF a week before. If you don't think that has an impact, then i don't know what to tell you. Just because he didn't blow like Roglic in 2019, doesn't mean conditions favored him like they did Ganna.
Everybody knows that doing a Grand Tour is the best training there is. Maybe four days of recovery is shorter than ideal but it seemed to be enough for Van Aert.

Another thing; Ganna's specialty is short TTs. I mean, he can almost dive below the 4 minute barrier on a 4 km pursuit. That's insane. He rode the Tirreno ITT with an average of 56.6 km/h last year - on an out-and-back course! In the UAE Tour he again almost averaged 56 on a course that pointed in all directions. So no benefit from wind. Nobody has ridden their TT bike that fast ever before. He has been untouchable on all TTs since the post-covid-break.

By the way, why would Campenaerts also beating the record in San Benedetto del Tronto set off alarm bells? Should Ganna have beaten him by a minute on a 10 km course for his performance to "count"?

I'm not trying to take anything away from Van Aert but there is no way Ganna was not the clearcut favourite before yersterday's short TT. Had it been 40 kms, it could have been a different story. Especially because Ganna had seemed fatigued Monday (which evidently was not just to put on a show).
 
Well, to be frank, i didn't automatically assume Ganna was going to win but it would 've been most likely i guess. However, van Aert "only" finished about half a minute down at the WCC, the smallest margin between winner and runner up in some years. While the context is important, since van Aert came out of the TDF where he was working each and every day, while Ganna had an ideal prep towards the WCC. Then, knowing van Aert is supposed to be in top shape in 2 weeks, while Ganna is not, you know something like this could easily happen. The moment Küng beat Ganna's time, i was kind of expecting van Aert to beat both.

I also find it remarkable that everybody simply assumed Ganna turned into some unbeatable force overnight, at the exact same time as Evenepoel got injured. As if Ganna acquired superpowers the moment Evenepoel fell off a bridge somewhere. Ganna was beaten by Dennis and Evenepoel at the previous WCC, by a much larger margin by both, than he beat van Aert by. He was beaten by Evenepoel at the Euro's. He was beaten by van Emden at Chrono des Nations, and then he was beaten again by Evenepoel in San Juan. Evenepoel continued to beat Dennis in Algarve, then he crashed and Ganna became "unbeatable".
The San Juan ITT was not on full TT setup (no tri-bars).

The WCTT route was half length. Better to compare as percentage of overall time or s/km difference.

And while only one of the TTs in his streak was against van Aert and none against Evenepoel, the winning streak of Ganna in ITTs is longer (in time and number) than the longest streaks of Cancellara and Tony Martin. While he was not unbeaten on shorter TTs, the only more impressive streak is that of Wiggins in 2012.

Ganna has a different setup now (and at least second half of 2020) than in 2019 for his tri-bars, somewhat resembling the praying mantis. He is definitely faster now than with the old setup.
 
Everybody knows that doing a Grand Tour is the best training there is. Maybe four days of recovery is shorter than ideal but it seemed to be enough for Van Aert.

Another thing; Ganna's specialty is short TTs. I mean, he can almost dive below the 4 minute barrier on a 4 km pursuit. That's insane. He rode the Tirreno ITT with an average of 56.6 km/h last year - on an out-and-back course! In the UAE Tour he again almost averaged 56 on a course that pointed in all directions. So no benefit from wind. Nobody has ridden their TT bike that fast ever before. He has been untouchable on all TTs since the post-covid-break.

By the way, why would Campenaerts also beating the record in San Benedetto del Tronto set off alarm bells? Should Ganna have beaten him by a minute on a 10 km course for his performance to "count"?

I'm not trying to take anything away from Van Aert but there is no way Ganna was not the clearcut favourite before yersterday's short TT. Had it been 40 kms, it could have been a different story. Especially because Ganna had seemed fatigued Monday (which evidently was not just to put on a show).
If you read my initial post, you will see i never said Ganna wasn't the favorite. This was never my point. I simply said Ganna's overall status has been overstated or overestimated.

Van Aert is a more punchy rider than Ganna. As a fellow ITT favorite, there is no reason to assume he would perform less on a shorter track as opposed to a longer one. Van Aert also said he never used to train on his TT bike this early. This year he started training on it in February. Van Aert needs to be in shape in two weeks, Ganna doesn't. Ganna winning this was never set in stone.

Campenaerts beating the old course record by a whopping 12 seconds showed there were extreme wind conditions, as such, the entire effort of Ganna has no actual reference point, so it's useless to state that him beating the record by 30 seconds is indicative of him being untouchable. All you can say is "he beat Campenaerts by 18s". Considering this is Ganna's expertise, it was all but to be expected he would handily beat Campenaerts on a short ITT. That's a very strong performance, but not the ITT performance of the century. Küng beat Campenaerts two weeks earlier at the Euros with 21s over 25km. All things considered, it's clear Ganna was clearly the best ITT'er over that period, but looking closer, it's not difficult to see the difference with the rest of the pack was much smaller than what it would appear at first glance.

The San Juan ITT was not on full TT setup (no tri-bars).

The WCTT route was half length. Better to compare as percentage of overall time or s/km difference.

And while only one of the TTs in his streak was against van Aert and none against Evenepoel, the winning streak of Ganna in ITTs is longer (in time and number) than the longest streaks of Cancellara and Tony Martin. While he was not unbeaten on shorter TTs, the only more impressive streak is that of Wiggins in 2012.

Ganna has a different setup now (and at least second half of 2020) than in 2019 for his tri-bars, somewhat resembling the praying mantis. He is definitely faster now than with the old setup.
I know the San Juan ITT was on regular road bikes, but it also had a climb in it, so it wouldn't have mattered much considering the distance was too short to change bikes, and he would have lost even more on the climb on a TT bike.

The WC TT was shorter (which i've been told, should favor him), and he managed to take 0.82s/km on van Aert. That's a smaller difference than what he lost to Evenepoel in each of their previous 3 encounters. And still, van Aert was sprinting on Champs Elysée merely a few days before.

I'm quite convinced Ganna is (and was in 2020) faster than he was in 2019. I never argued he wasn't. Just that he didn't go from being clearly overshadowed by some, to untouchable. Also a winnnig streak is nice for the fans, but it doesn't tell the complete story, when competitors are injured or out of form (Evenepoel, Dumoulin, Dennis...) and the margins are smaller compared to the competition that is present.
 
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The 2020 WC ITT course was both shorter and easier than the ones from 2018 and 19, so I don't think it's that weird, that the time gaps were smaller. Van Aert could possibly have been tired after Tour, but who knows if Ganna was feeling better that day, than he did in T-A or during the Giro? But in the end he did what he had to do in order to win, and van Aert didn't.

Van Aert is clearly one of the best TT'ers at the moment, but we'll have to wait and see whether he has actually overtaken Ganna in the discipline or not. Yesterday the conditions may have favoured van Aert a bit, though I'm not sure it made much difference, seeing that van Aert was also fastest at the intermediate point. Küng being better than Ganna was surprising, so I think Ganna did underperform.
 
And he rode 2 seconds per kilometre faster than number 2. He combined a course record with the biggest ever winning margin on that stage and number 2 was the previous years' winner and the hour record holder but let's not count him for some reason :rolleyes:
I already addressed that. He won with a 18s gap, that's the achievement, not breaking the course record which clearly has been broken in abnormal conditions considering 4 people broke it and two others came close enough to smell it, and for which there is no point of reference. And that's less than 1.8s/km faster than Campenaerts. And while Victor may be an excellent TT'er, he has never been the worlds best and not necessarily great at short TT's.

So, maybe the real ride of the century is that of van Aert then? Who was 1.1s/km faster than the guy who set the previous ride of the century and is world class on this distance? :kissingheart:

Look, at the end of the day, he beat Campenaerts, who did not win an ITT all year, by 18s. Which is great, but not the achievement of the century. And not the achievement that makes him unbeatable. So i stand by my previous assessment, Ganna's domination has been overstated/overestimated.
 

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