Geraint Thomas, the next british hope

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Re:

samhocking said:
Isn't it rather meaningless, unless you know what Tours they had leadership in? i.e. Thomas won on his second attempt as a leader, same as Contador did for example?
I'm pretty certain someone brought to your attention the glaring difference in age between the two at the time of their initial Tour wins.

Edit: Also Contador went into that tour as option "X". Leipheimer was the designated leader if I recall correctly. Discovery wasn't certain as to whether Contador could lead the team at that juncture but they didn't want to waste him riding in support and gave him free reign to ride his own race. At least that is how I recall it.
 
I'm not saying it's all good, but that isn't what we're talking about. We're talking about a riders performance we assume is due to doping, using the doped performances of others we now know were probably doping to explain it. Any analysis and comparison with the past results is so distorted beyond all logical explanation anyway to try and gain meaning from those cheated performances is like working out who is the best WWF wrestler.
 
Re: Re:

Angliru said:
samhocking said:
Isn't it rather meaningless, unless you know what Tours they had leadership in? i.e. Thomas won on his second attempt as a leader, same as Contador did for example?
I'm pretty certain someone brought to your attention the glaring difference in age between the two at the time of their initial Tour wins.
And as I said, Thomas won his first Tour on his second attempt when he had leadership responsibility.

Even on his first attempt in 2016, did you know when he had his bad day, rather than maintain his place on GC, he decided to ease up in order to save his legs to help Froome win the next day.
 
Re:

mrhender said:
Then why the comparisons you just performed above?
You can't have it both ways.
I am viewing Thomas as a doper in order to maintain my point, what's so complicated. If you're comparing Thomas the doper, to rider x in the past who was a doper, then any 'believable rider' is rather pointless. As Armstrong said, without doping for the Worlds he would never have won it and today if that race was ridden today, he said he wouldn't stand a chance as that level of cheating isn't possible today to make the difference anymore, so looking at riders palamares doping from the moment they entered the peloton and winning at a young age is pointless as Armstrong's Worlds proved. ie none of it is based on natural ability in reality, it's based on doping, even in their 20's.
 
Re: Re:

samhocking said:
Angliru said:
samhocking said:
Isn't it rather meaningless, unless you know what Tours they had leadership in? i.e. Thomas won on his second attempt as a leader, same as Contador did for example?
I'm pretty certain someone brought to your attention the glaring difference in age between the two at the time of their initial Tour wins.
And as I said, Thomas won his first Tour on his second attempt when he had leadership responsibility.

Even on his first attempt in 2016, did you know when he had his bad day, rather than maintain his place on GC, he decided to ease up in order to save his legs to help Froome win the next day.
I believe the primary question is if he had all of this latent talent for grand tour success, riding for a large portion of his career for a team that is so far advanced in every area (or that is what they and their fans tell us), how is it possible that he wasn't presented with more opportunities to succeed and bring further glory to his team, or why didn't this obvious talent not stand out from the rest of his teammates who were given multiple opportunities at grand tours? You're talking 11 years and 9 years before he even reached the podium of major week long stage race.
 
Well, he's not doing it all at the same time is he. When he did Track he was the best at it, when he did classics he was one of the best at that, then he switched to week long stage races and was very good at that, now he's switched to Grand Tours with leadership responsibility and he won that.
I think the obvious point being, that many Grand Tour riders, with focused training over a year or two could be World Pursuit Champions. Many could probably be pretty good classics riders too, but the top of the tree is the Grand Tours. If you're already there, like Contador, Indurain or Armstrong from a young age via doping, why would give it all up to ride a World Pursuit final and only get a bag of peanuts as your salary?
 
Re:

samhocking said:
Well, he's not doing it all at the same time is he. When he did Track he was the best at it, when he did classics he was one of the best at that, then he switched to week long stage races and was very good at that, now he's switched to Grand Tours with leadership responsibility and he won that.
I think the obvious point being, that many Grand Tour riders, with focused training over a year or two could be World Pursuit Champions. Many could probably be pretty good classics riders too, but the top of the tree is the Grand Tours. If you're already there, like Contador, Indurain or Armstrong from a young age via doping, why would give it all up to ride a World Pursuit final and only get a bag of peanuts as your salary?
...and wouldn't that also apply to Thomas? If the science is so clear to some, why is it that he passed up the potential riches, fame and fortune that would've been available to him had he immediately pursued grand tour success earlier in his career, instead of the cobbled classics and basic domestique duties in stage races?
 
Before Wiggins and Sky I'm not sure anyone had even tried had they? Even Wiggins said he didn't think it was possible until 2009 at Garmin. Thomas probably thought the same until 2012. It doesn't matter if it was doping or not. The point is if a doped donkey is capable of a palamares like that, then what have all the doped racehorses been doing so wrong?
I simply think the peloton is largely cleaner, to the extent natural ability in pure endurance is capable of shining. When doping was with impunity, I'm not sure that was the case. I think a lot of it was simply continuation of distortion of natural ability due to doping for a riders entire career and not confident in using that history to really explain anything today with accuracy
 
Jul 21, 2016
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Re: Re:

samhocking said:
mrhender said:
Then why the comparisons you just performed above?
You can't have it both ways.
I am viewing Thomas as a doper in order to maintain my point, what's so complicated. If you're comparing Thomas the doper, to rider x in the past who was a doper, then any 'believable rider' is rather pointless. As Armstrong said, without doping for the Worlds he would never have won it and today if that race was ridden today, he said he wouldn't stand a chance as that level of cheating isn't possible today to make the difference anymore, so looking at riders palamares doping from the moment they entered the peloton and winning at a young age is pointless as Armstrong's Worlds proved. ie none of it is based on natural ability in reality, it's based on doping, even in their 20's.
(Sorry for the off topic)

Just curious, when did Armstrong admit that he doped for his Worlds win? Do you have a source for this please?

After he confessed everything I've only ever heard him maintain that he was completely clean for his Worlds win and that was proof of how naturally talented he really was. Never believed him of course, just curious as to when he admitted it.
 
samhocking said:
So now you're moving the goalposts 'after' you've realised what you said was false?

It was a simple fact I stated. that pursuit riders (all are world pursuit champions in that list) also make great TT riders and that list proves it. Clearly most pursuit riders don't cross over to pro road careers and don't because the demands of the pursuit means that's not possible within an Olympic year/cycle. Even Wiggins never crossed over much, if at all in the same Olympic year, he was either road or track. Many never cross over, so we'll never know how good they might have been. However, most of those that did enter a pro road career either from pursuit or while still pursuit riders at the highest level, also competed at the very top level at TT and TTT on the road.

If being a world pursuit champion in that list 'didn't' translate to TT, there would be nobody in that list with TT results at the highest level, among established road riders and timetrial specialists who do it day in day out and is their entire career! One would assume there were at least a handful of decent-enough road riders to beat a 3 or 4km pursuit rider in a long road TT, but clearly not!
I think the only person moving goalposts is you. Maybe go back and read what you said about pursuit riders making great ITT riders. Then you include Stuart O'Grady and Luke Roberts because they were on winning teams. Yet neither were super ITT riders. How is that for moving the goalposts.

Considering this is a thread discussing a Tour de France winner, I am pretty sure the question was about what male pursuit riders have made the switch to being top pro winning TT riders. In your desperation to come up with names, you widened the criteria as much as you could just to name a few people. With all due respect to Womens cycling, it did not/does not have the depth of mens cycling so frequently a talented female could dominate all facets of the sport, especially in the era of Longo and Van Morseel, which was nowhere near the level of current ladies cycling in terms of depth or professionalism.

The highest level at TT is World Senior Championships or winning TTs at GTs or even ProTour level. How many on your list have won or even medaled at World Senior Championships or won TTs at Grand Tours. I don't think anyone doubts that the TT will be the strongest road area for pursuit riders, it has always been that way, which is why the sudden change to mountain climbers is so out of sync. But your efforts at misrepresentation are pretty transparent.
 
Re:

samhocking said:
the top of the tree is the Grand Tours. If you're already there, like Contador, Indurain or Armstrong from a young age via doping, why would give it all up to ride a World Pursuit final and only get a bag of peanuts as your salary?
So let me get this straight... you're arguing:

A) The pursuit is as good an indicator as any of the power output and climbing talent necessary to win GTs.

B) GTs are top of the tree, and any rider with the talent to win them should try to do so because pursuits only pay a bag of peanuts.

Why then has no-one gone from doing pursuits to contending GTs in the last 60 years, apart from our two British boys?
 
Re:

samhocking said:
Well, he's not doing it all at the same time is he. When he did Track he was the best at it, when he did classics he was one of the best at that, then he switched to week long stage races and was very good at that, now he's switched to Grand Tours with leadership responsibility and he won that.
I think the obvious point being, that many Grand Tour riders, with focused training over a year or two could be World Pursuit Champions. Many could probably be pretty good classics riders too, but the top of the tree is the Grand Tours. If you're already there, like Contador, Indurain or Armstrong from a young age via doping, why would give it all up to ride a World Pursuit final and only get a bag of peanuts as your salary?
He was one of the best classics riders? He had a few good results but not enough to call him one of the best.
 
Re: Re:

Winterfold said:
Fearless Greg Lemond said:
samhocking said:
Still waiting for your list of pursuiters who kicked *** at TT's though?
I'm not sure why I am helping him but both Boardman and Obree went from pursuit to the Hour Record, which supports some of his physiological argument.

The flaw is that track cycling requires upper body strength to resist the G force and constant acceleration - this then becomes a big problem when you hit the mountains in a road race. When in a steady state in the velodrome, or a flat prologue mass can be overcome by aerodynamics so both Boardman's and Obree's 'technical doping' worked. You can't do this in the mountains, there is no way of hiding mass from gravity.

The debate really is can you turn 85kg of trackie into 67kg of GT winner without them losing power? Not credibly to many of us...
All the dialectics here lead us to this essential question.

Can someone who is defending Thomas being clean/plausible please respond directly to this?
 
Nikki Terpstra's coach said that he (Terpstra) lost 1-2kgs in 2018, and this was the difference between being a good classics rider to a great one.

For Thomas, we're talking about 10+ kgs and it's not like he was a couch potato at 85; he was an Olympic champion, thoroughbred athlete, at the very peak of his fitness.

So how the bloody hell does he just morph his physique into something completely different? Someone please explain this.

And also: why doesn't Sagan do this? Terpstra for that matter. GVA and all the other powerhouses with big engines that will never in a million years contend for a GT because of one single factor: their weight.
 
Re:

The Hegelian said:
Nikki Terpstra's coach said that he (Terpstra) lost 1-2kgs in 2018, and this was the difference between being a good classics rider to a great one.

For Thomas, we're talking about 10+ kgs and it's not like he was a couch potato at 85; he was an Olympic champion, thoroughbred athlete, at the very peak of his fitness.

So how the bloody hell does he just morph his physique into something completely different? Someone please explain this.

And also: why doesn't Sagan do this? Terpstra for that matter. GVA and all the other powerhouses with big engines that will never in a million years contend for a GT because of one single factor: their weight.
I don't know the physical reasons and difficulty with retaining a certain percentage of your power after shedding significant kgs, but a part of the reason why great classics riders don't try shedding 10-20 kgs and giving the GC a go is because it is a risk. As has been mentioned, Thomas was not a great classics rider. He was a good classics rider. Certainly he had less success to give up then the cyclists you mentioned above by forgoing his classics career. I would have loved to have seen how Cancellara could have gone on GC in a GT, but he never took that at all seriously. And why should he have? He would be giving up likely victories in the cobbled classics for what? A top 10? Maybe. A podium? Very unlikely. The point here is that Thomas is a talented cyclist, but as he wasn't a great classics rider he wasn't giving up so much to give stage racing a serious go.

BTW, I would love to see how Sagan could go in GC. We already know that he is quite a good climber. But he'd have to lose 8-10 kgs and potentially waste an entire season. And who knows if he could then return to the rider that he was?
 
Re: Re:

gregrowlerson said:
The Hegelian said:
Nikki Terpstra's coach said that he (Terpstra) lost 1-2kgs in 2018, and this was the difference between being a good classics rider to a great one.

For Thomas, we're talking about 10+ kgs and it's not like he was a couch potato at 85; he was an Olympic champion, thoroughbred athlete, at the very peak of his fitness.

So how the bloody hell does he just morph his physique into something completely different? Someone please explain this.

And also: why doesn't Sagan do this? Terpstra for that matter. GVA and all the other powerhouses with big engines that will never in a million years contend for a GT because of one single factor: their weight.
I don't know the physical reasons and difficulty with retaining a certain percentage of your power after shedding significant kgs, but a part of the reason why great classics riders don't try shedding 10-20 kgs and giving the GC a go is because it is a risk. As has been mentioned, Thomas was not a great classics rider. He was a good classics rider. Certainly he had less success to give up then the cyclists you mentioned above by forgoing his classics career. I would have loved to have seen how Cancellara could have gone on GC in a GT, but he never took that at all seriously. And why should he have? He would be giving up likely victories in the cobbled classics for what? A top 10? Maybe. A podium? Very unlikely. The point here is that Thomas is a talented cyclist, but as he wasn't a great classics rider he wasn't giving up so much to give stage racing a serious go.

BTW, I would love to see how Sagan could go in GC. We already know that he is quite a good climber. But he'd have to lose 8-10 kgs and potentially waste an entire season. And who knows if he could then return to the rider that he was?
Okay so your argument is: Sagan, Terpstra, Cancellera etc could all have won/win/podium/top 10 GT's, if only they commit to it by taking a risk and potentially sacrificing success in their areas of brilliance.

It's just a matter of dropping the weight, and hey presto, a classics beast changes into a GC beast.

My argument is: there's no plausible way to drop that much weight, whilst maintaining/gaining power without cheating. Whenever those kinds of transformations have happened in the past, it's always been a massive, massive red flag for doping - for mine, Jalabert and Armstrong are the two big standouts, it looked bloody suss back then, and it turned out to be bloody suss once we got all the facts.
 
Re: Re:

The Hegelian said:
gregrowlerson said:
The Hegelian said:
Nikki Terpstra's coach said that he (Terpstra) lost 1-2kgs in 2018, and this was the difference between being a good classics rider to a great one.

For Thomas, we're talking about 10+ kgs and it's not like he was a couch potato at 85; he was an Olympic champion, thoroughbred athlete, at the very peak of his fitness.

So how the bloody hell does he just morph his physique into something completely different? Someone please explain this.

And also: why doesn't Sagan do this? Terpstra for that matter. GVA and all the other powerhouses with big engines that will never in a million years contend for a GT because of one single factor: their weight.
I don't know the physical reasons and difficulty with retaining a certain percentage of your power after shedding significant kgs, but a part of the reason why great classics riders don't try shedding 10-20 kgs and giving the GC a go is because it is a risk. As has been mentioned, Thomas was not a great classics rider. He was a good classics rider. Certainly he had less success to give up then the cyclists you mentioned above by forgoing his classics career. I would have loved to have seen how Cancellara could have gone on GC in a GT, but he never took that at all seriously. And why should he have? He would be giving up likely victories in the cobbled classics for what? A top 10? Maybe. A podium? Very unlikely. The point here is that Thomas is a talented cyclist, but as he wasn't a great classics rider he wasn't giving up so much to give stage racing a serious go.

BTW, I would love to see how Sagan could go in GC. We already know that he is quite a good climber. But he'd have to lose 8-10 kgs and potentially waste an entire season. And who knows if he could then return to the rider that he was?
Okay so your argument is: Sagan, Terpstra, Cancellera etc could all have won/win/podium/top 10 GT's, if only they commit to it by taking a risk and potentially sacrificing success in their areas of brilliance.

It's just a matter of dropping the weight, and hey presto, a classics beast changes into a GC beast.

My argument is: there's no plausible way to drop that much weight, whilst maintaining/gaining power without cheating. Whenever those kinds of transformations have happened in the past, it's always been a massive, massive red flag for doping - for mine, Jalabert and Armstrong are the two big standouts, it looked bloody suss back then, and it turned out to be bloody suss once we got all the facts.
And many of those riders simply don't want to take all those extra drugs to lose that weight and keep it off. There are many more health risks to consider.
 
Re: Re:

veganrob said:
The Hegelian said:
gregrowlerson said:
The Hegelian said:
Nikki Terpstra's coach said that he (Terpstra) lost 1-2kgs in 2018, and this was the difference between being a good classics rider to a great one.

For Thomas, we're talking about 10+ kgs and it's not like he was a couch potato at 85; he was an Olympic champion, thoroughbred athlete, at the very peak of his fitness.

So how the bloody hell does he just morph his physique into something completely different? Someone please explain this.

And also: why doesn't Sagan do this? Terpstra for that matter. GVA and all the other powerhouses with big engines that will never in a million years contend for a GT because of one single factor: their weight.
I don't know the physical reasons and difficulty with retaining a certain percentage of your power after shedding significant kgs, but a part of the reason why great classics riders don't try shedding 10-20 kgs and giving the GC a go is because it is a risk. As has been mentioned, Thomas was not a great classics rider. He was a good classics rider. Certainly he had less success to give up then the cyclists you mentioned above by forgoing his classics career. I would have loved to have seen how Cancellara could have gone on GC in a GT, but he never took that at all seriously. And why should he have? He would be giving up likely victories in the cobbled classics for what? A top 10? Maybe. A podium? Very unlikely. The point here is that Thomas is a talented cyclist, but as he wasn't a great classics rider he wasn't giving up so much to give stage racing a serious go.

BTW, I would love to see how Sagan could go in GC. We already know that he is quite a good climber. But he'd have to lose 8-10 kgs and potentially waste an entire season. And who knows if he could then return to the rider that he was?
Okay so your argument is: Sagan, Terpstra, Cancellera etc could all have won/win/podium/top 10 GT's, if only they commit to it by taking a risk and potentially sacrificing success in their areas of brilliance.

It's just a matter of dropping the weight, and hey presto, a classics beast changes into a GC beast.

My argument is: there's no plausible way to drop that much weight, whilst maintaining/gaining power without cheating. Whenever those kinds of transformations have happened in the past, it's always been a massive, massive red flag for doping - for mine, Jalabert and Armstrong are the two big standouts, it looked bloody suss back then, and it turned out to be bloody suss once we got all the facts.
And many of those riders simply don't want to take all those extra drugs to lose that weight and keep it off. There are many more health risks to consider.
Since this is largely about Thomas, just a bit on his own weight loss (if the figures can be believed)

2011 - (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/othersports/cycling/8606668/Tour-de-France-2011-Geraint-Thomas-QandA.html) - 71kg

2013 - (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geraint_Thomas (but ultimately from Sky own website at that time) - 70kg

2018 - (https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/jul/29/geraint-thomas-seals-tour-de-france-title-paris-team-sky-chris-froome) - 67.6kg

So clearly he's lost a bit over the years but I doubt he was ever 85kg!
 
Apr 20, 2012
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Re: Re:

samhocking said:
Well off the world pursuit champions that come to mind that also did very well on road in ITT and TTT I can immediately think of the following names. I'm sure there are plenty of others who've crossed over as it's an obvious choice to do well in ITT if you're a pursuit champion.

AUS
Jack Bobridge - UCI Road World Under–23 Championships ITT, National ITT Champion, 5th UCI Worlds ITT
Melissa Hoskins - 2nd UCI World Team time trial
Stuart OGrady - 1st Tour de France ITT 2013, 2nd Commonwealth Games ITT
Luke Roberts - 1st Endenhoven TTT
Brett Lancaster - 2nd World Team Time Trial Championships, 1st Junior National Time Trial Championships, 3rd Eindhoven Team Time Trial
Bradley McGee - 1st ITT Tour de Suisse, 1st Giro ITT

GBR
Thomas - we already know
Wiggins - we already know
Owain Doull - 3rd UCI TTT Championships, 2nd National Under–23 ITT, 2nd National ITT
Joanna Rowsell - 1st National Time Trial Championships
Chris Boardman - we already know
Graeme Obree - we already know

RUS
Viatcheslav Ekimov - 1st Time trial, Olympic Games etc etc

FR
Jeannie Longo - 1st World Time Trial Championship etc etc

NZ
Sarah Ulmer - 1st National Time Trial Championships, 1st ITT Oceania Games

HOL
Leontien van Moorsel - 1st Olympic ITT x 2, 1st National ITT, 2nd Commonwealth Games etc etc

US
Chloé Dygert - 1st World Junior ITT
I saw PCMG already called you on your BS.

Please do a better google search next time you're called on your bluff.

The only one who came from track and was a DECENT TT'er on your list is Brad McGee. He tried to do GC, didnt need to shed KG's because he wasnt 'fat' like your Brit heroes, and did one decent Giro, 2003 or so?

Stop trolling people who have actually seen the people on your 'list' race.

Boardman was good, very good, at PROLOGUES by the way.

That's what track riders who switch to road racing normally are good at.
 
Re: Re:

Fearless Greg Lemond said:
samhocking said:
Well off the world pursuit champions that come to mind that also did very well on road in ITT and TTT I can immediately think of the following names. I'm sure there are plenty of others who've crossed over as it's an obvious choice to do well in ITT if you're a pursuit champion.

AUS
Jack Bobridge - UCI Road World Under–23 Championships ITT, National ITT Champion, 5th UCI Worlds ITT
Melissa Hoskins - 2nd UCI World Team time trial
Stuart OGrady - 1st Tour de France ITT 2013, 2nd Commonwealth Games ITT
Luke Roberts - 1st Endenhoven TTT
Brett Lancaster - 2nd World Team Time Trial Championships, 1st Junior National Time Trial Championships, 3rd Eindhoven Team Time Trial
Bradley McGee - 1st ITT Tour de Suisse, 1st Giro ITT

GBR
Thomas - we already know
Wiggins - we already know
Owain Doull - 3rd UCI TTT Championships, 2nd National Under–23 ITT, 2nd National ITT
Joanna Rowsell - 1st National Time Trial Championships
Chris Boardman - we already know
Graeme Obree - we already know

RUS
Viatcheslav Ekimov - 1st Time trial, Olympic Games etc etc

FR
Jeannie Longo - 1st World Time Trial Championship etc etc

NZ
Sarah Ulmer - 1st National Time Trial Championships, 1st ITT Oceania Games

HOL
Leontien van Moorsel - 1st Olympic ITT x 2, 1st National ITT, 2nd Commonwealth Games etc etc

US
Chloé Dygert - 1st World Junior ITT
I saw PCMG already called you on your BS.

Please do a better google search next time you're called on your bluff.

The only one who came from track and was a DECENT TT'er on your list is Brad McGee. He tried to do GC, didnt need to shed KG's because he wasnt 'fat' like your Brit heroes, and did one decent Giro, 2003 or so?

Stop trolling people who have actually seen the people on your 'list' race.

Boardman was good, very good, at PROLOGUES by the way.

That's what track riders who switch to road racing normally are good at.

Says who?? any proof of that?
 
Well of those very names provided by Mr Hocking, Lancaster won a 1km prologue in the Giro, McGee won a longer prologue in the tour, Boardman won a prologue in the tour (or was it 2)? You could add Dennis to that list too.

It is clearly an area of specialisation for trackies>>road.

The other really common one is sprint train and sometimes even sprinter - Gaviria, Viviani, Cavendish etc.

Less common is classics rider.

Much less common - rare - is climber/GC rider.
 
So ... why not cut to the chase, here?

What’s was G’s “regimen” approaching and during the Tour?

Names of methods, names of drugs, frequency, duration, effect?

And why no positive tests? Who is protecting him? Why?
 

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