Teams & Riders Froome Talk Only

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Apr 17, 2009
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ianfra said:
What a cynical post. Either you love and appreciate this sport or you do not. Interesting this forum when a whole bunch of ne'er do wells can insult clean riders from the peloton, but if I dare insult you back then I get banned. I think it is a shame that CyclingNews (an excellent website for us cyclists) allows such scandal and libel in their forum. There are many posts here that utterly disgusts me. I am so glad I am not a pro rider. I am happy to be a coach and I am happy to be coaching clean riders that would not even think about doping. However, I truly believe that half the people here who post accusatory rubbish with no evidence would probably dope themselves given half a chance.
Ian, sorry mate, I'm not intending this an insult, but you're a credulous fool.
 
Jul 11, 2012
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Fergoose said:
The article below is the first I've seen to openly suggest the bilharzia may have negatively influenced Froome's performances prior to diagnosis in November 2010.
Please could you expand a bit on how you arrive at the date November 2010?

On 27 November 2010 Chris raced in one of our biggest road races on the (admittedly small) SA calendar, a 200km TTT, which his 12 man team won by 11 minutes with him doing what was reported to be the majority of the pulls.

http://results.racetec.co.za/results_by_person.aspx?PID=106907

I talked to his teammates afterwards and the guys looked a bit grey to say the least and attributed this to Froome's pace making. For SA this was the first we saw of the new Froome post moving to Sky. Previously he had not been a dominant force in SA racing. I'm not sure exactly how the 2008 tour played out for Barloworld but Chris was 174th on that occasion, 6th from the back of the field.

I hate to suggest anything untoward about Froomie as obviously in SA we hardly ever have guys do well internationally and before last year's Vuelta the idea that an SA rider could potentially win the tour was pretty laughable.

That aside his performance has set the alarm bells ringing for me, especially beating Cancellara in the TT. His TT skills are above average to be sure, but beating Spartacus with that little muscle mass is pretty weird.
 
Dec 27, 2010
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Didn't Froome say he had another bout of bilharzia earlier this season? Think how strong he could've been with a better buildup for the Tour! :D
 
FrankChickens said:
Please could you expand a bit on how you arrive at the date November 2010?
Sure thing.

http://www.realpeloton.com/

It appears to be a press release from the Vuelta organisers stating:

"Froome, 26, recalled that his career had been affected by Bilharzia, a disease caused by parasitic worms. He got it in November last year as he visited his native country, Kenya."


The link I posted earlier

http://velonews.competitor.com/2012/07/news/tour-notebook-stage-15-froome-battles-parasite-media-cars-expelled_230162

states

"It went largely undiagnosed until he underwent extensive blood screening with a switch to Sky in 2010."

but I don't know in what month he joined Sky in 2010.
 
FrankChickens said:
I'm not sure exactly how the 2008 tour played out for Barloworld but Chris was 174th on that occasion, 6th from the back of the field.
Just to correct you on that he actually came 84th in '08. He had two decent results in the TTs - stages 4 and 20 and a good ride on stage 9 - finishing in the 2nd main group 1:57 behind Mr Ricco....

http://www.letour.fr/2008/TDF/LIVE/us/400/classement/index.html

Not earth shattering admittedly but for a young rider something to suggest some potential.
 
Jul 11, 2012
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simoni said:
Just to correct you on that he actually came 84th in '08. He had two decent results in the TTs - stages 4 and 20 and a good ride on stage 9 - finishing in the 2nd main group 1:57 behind Mr Ricco....

http://www.letour.fr/2008/TDF/LIVE/us/400/classement/index.html

Not earth shattering admittedly but for a young rider something to suggest some potential.
Thanks, I was looking at stage 1 and not the final results, doh. 84th is a pretty decent result.
 
Jul 11, 2012
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Fergoose said:
Sure thing.

http://www.realpeloton.com/

It appears to be a press release from the Vuelta organisers stating:

"Froome, 26, recalled that his career had been affected by Bilharzia, a disease caused by parasitic worms. He got it in November last year as he visited his native country, Kenya."


The link I posted earlier

http://velonews.competitor.com/2012/07/news/tour-notebook-stage-15-froome-battles-parasite-media-cars-expelled_230162

states

"It went largely undiagnosed until he underwent extensive blood screening with a switch to Sky in 2010."

but I don't know in what month he joined Sky in 2010.
Thanks for that, I had a look and Froome went to Sky end of the season 2009 with the move first reported in late September '09.

Very interestingly there is absolutely no mention of problems with Bilharzia until Froome takes the lead at the Vuelta end of August 2011. I had a thorough search using Google's date range option.

http://alusainc.wordpress.com/2011/08/31/chris-froome-to-lead-team-sky-at-the-vuelta-a-espana/

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/sport/olympics/3784003/Briton-Chris-Froome-leads-cyclings-Vuelta-a-Espana.html

Very much looks like Sky management realised that questions would be asked and decided to trot out the Bilharzia story. Whether or not it's based on fact I can't say. Froome mentions it only in passing on his personal site, which is not updated very frequently.

I also see he did a charity ride through Kenya before arriving in SA for his winning ride at the double century.

http://www.teamsky.com/article/0,27290,17565_6523352,00.html

It's possible he may have picked up the parasite whilst riding through the bush, but his performance on 27 November was not that of a sick individual, quite the opposite.
 
FrankChickens said:
Thanks, I was looking at stage 1 and not the final results, doh. 84th is a pretty decent result.
81st (after DQs) is still not all that good considering people were touting his performances in that race as evidence why his transformation at last year's Vuelta was to be expected. The much-vaunted Alpe d'Huez stage? He fell out of the heads of state group at round about the same time as Johan van Summeren.

For reference, here are a few other riders of similar ages and their first performances in GTs.

Richie Porte: 7th, 2010 Giro d'Italia (I'm aware of the circumstances)
Vincenzo Nibali: 19th, 2007 Giro d'Italia
Pierre Rolland: 21st, 2009 Tour de France
Roman Kreuziger: 21st, 2007 Vuelta a España
Janez Brajkovic: 30th, 2006 Vuelta a España
Rigoberto Urán: 55th, 2009 Tour de France
Jürgen van den Broeck: 74th, 2007 Giro d'Italia (he was 7th in 2008 though).

Most of these guys have shown a pretty steady upward curve (or in Kreuziger's case something of a plateau). Froome went from being noticeably worse to noticeably better in one fell swoop.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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simoni said:
Just to correct you on that he actually came 84th in '08. He had two decent results in the TTs - stages 4 and 20 and a good ride on stage 9 - finishing in the 2nd main group 1:57 behind Mr Ricco....

http://www.letour.fr/2008/TDF/LIVE/us/400/classement/index.html

Not earth shattering admittedly but for a young rider something to suggest some potential.
Just to keep returning to the point i keep making in the Sky thread about potential showing early no Tour winner between WW2 and the emergence of EPO ever finished lover than 57 in any of the first 5 GTs they rode and that's was a guy who won by getting into an 18 minute breakaway. So no, 87th does not show potential, not Tour Winning potential at least, though in fairness Froome hasn't won the Tour yet.
 
Dec 30, 2011
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This may have already been mentioned but Froome's results in the Vuelta were not totally out of the blue from his previous results as he had shown some form in the previous races of the Tour de Suisse and Luxembourg...

In Luxembourg he finished 9th and in the main front group on the most decisive stage out of a group of 14 and in Suisse he finished 11th in the prologue/TT in Lugano and then he finished 12th on the following Mountain stage which was one of the most decisive in the race, he then capped the race off with a 9th in the final TT.

Though these races and these perfomances certainly can not justify his leap at the Vuelta it can go some way to explaining how he was in the midst of building form and recovering from the parasite disease which had blighted him and indeed if you look at his 2011 season you can see how he steadily improves with a convincing ride in Romandie where he finished up with the favourites on a decisive stage and Catalunya followed by the above two races.

The point is that Froome was logically going to improve as he overcame his disease and this is portrayed by the improvement in results. The only problem is the large leap for the Vuelta and this seems to be as he had really hit top form then as he seems to have done this year where he seems to have followed a similar peaking strategy.
 
Jul 11, 2012
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Cerberus said:
Just to keep returning to the point i keep making in the Sky thread about potential showing early no Tour winner between WW2 and the emergence of EPO ever finished lover than 57 in any of the first 5 GTs they rode and that's was a guy who won by getting into an 18 minute breakaway. So no, 87th does not show potential, not Tour Winning potential at least, though in fairness Froome hasn't won the Tour yet.
The thing with Froome is his exposure to pro tour level stage racing was, as far as I'm aware - fairly certain about this - zero pre his 2008 TDF showing.

In South Africa most of our races are one day events and way too short at that to prepare anybody for European racing. It's a huge jump to make and historically most of our guys really struggle to make it in Europe.

So with this in mind it kind of makes sense that he'd make a big leap over the course of two years.

That said his jump in performance from pre-Vuelta to leading that race was a little too staggering.

As for Bilharzia I'm still not convinced he's ever had it, especially given that there was absolutely no mention of it anywhere until the very day he started leading the 2011 Vuelta.

Reports seem to vary as to when he first got it - either pre-Sky or some time in 2010.
 
FrankChickens said:
The thing with Froome is his exposure to pro tour level stage racing was, as far as I'm aware - fairly certain about this - zero pre his 2008 TDF showing.
He had raced a few good races in Europe before then, albeit very few that suit him:

104th, Volta ao Algarve
45th, Critérium International
121st, Gent-Wevelgem
22nd, The Worst Race In The World®
138th, Amstel Gold Race
114th, La Flèche Wallonne
84th, Liège-Bastogne-Liège

So not really anything setting the world on fire, but you really wouldn't expect that; 260km races are probably beyond his grasp at that age, and races like Gent-Wevelgem are totally unsuited to him.

I was wondering how the hell Barloworld got invited to all those, then I remembered that this nice, lovable, clean-cut team had Christian Pfannberger in it.
 
Going back to the Froome breakthrough of 2011. Did he specifically prepare for the Vuelta? I've read one of the Sky propaganda pieces about Wiggins skipping the Tour of Denmark because racing wasn't really needed, yet Froome had something like 60 racing days pre Vuelta and did Brixia and Poland before. It certainly looked like a pretty normal preparation for a Vuelta, none of those training camp instead of racing things that Sky supposedly does now.

Another thing, he should come out and say it when he was diagnosed with Bilharzia or a journalist should flat out ask it.
 
roundabout said:
Going back to the Froome breakthrough of 2011. Did he specifically prepare for the Vuelta? I've read one of the Sky propaganda pieces about Wiggins skipping the Tour of Denmark because racing wasn't really needed, yet Froome had something like 60 racing days pre Vuelta and did Brixia and Poland before. It certainly looked like a pretty normal preparation for a Vuelta, none of those training camp instead of racing things that Sky supposedly does now.

Another thing, he should come out and say it when he was diagnosed with Bilharzia or a journalist should flat out ask it.
I can't find the quote, but they said that he did in fact prepare specifically for the Vuelta. It's almost as if he was given carte blanche in how he did it.
 
18-Valve. (pithy) said:
I can't find the quote, but they said that he did in fact prepare specifically for the Vuelta. It's almost as if he was given carte blanche in how he did it.
I think they'd pretty much assumed he was going to be leaving - he'd been offered no contract prior to the vuelta. I imagine that they weren't bothering with monitoring his training and supporting him as much as they would be now.

That last sentence is worrying...
 

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