Teams & Riders Geraint Thomas

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G in 2018 form, Tao and Carapaz in last Autumn form, LRP in last year's Tour form and Dennis in beast mode are going to be a problem. All ifs at the moment, but a big problem for anyone, if so. You could very easily envisage a situation with Pog and Rog isolated, with 3 Ineos left in the high mountains.
 
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Oct 15, 2020
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One thing that has been underestimated as a tactic of Sky/Ineos in their later TdF wins when Froome waned and then wasn't a GC threat was how they placed two riders in the top 4 three years in a row. As much as there is/was a Sky train - having a second rider there makes the race a hell of a lot easier to control and it makes it much easier to make things chaotic if you're not in yellow. This is what I think Brailsford alludes to when he talks of moving away from their previous tactic - Pog/Rog are probably a level above any individual Ineos rider on any given day, but they have four riders in the tour squad who are head and shoulders better than any other rider supporting Pog or Rog (unless Kruijswijk can pull together any kind of form). If they can place as many of Thomas, Porte, Carapaz and Tao within touching distance of the Slovenians it will make the job of UAE and Jumbo incredibly difficult in holding the race together. In this context I think they will have Thomas there as their 'safe' option - he will TT well and ride consistently over the three weeks in all likelihood (if he can stay upright ofc, and build on the performance from this week).
 
Seriously lolwat? Even 2018 Thomas was basically discount Roglc to what Roglic would later do.
lol.

what did rog do other than fade in the third week and prove to be unable to make huge differences? He can only punch in the last 500m and take bonuses. but even he realizes that he has to hold energy in reserve to try and outlast the last week (both vueltas compared to giro and tdf).

Thomas -- discount rog? really? lol! when exactly did rog dominate the tdf like thomas did in 2018? um...never. did not even do it in the vuelta.

I agree, however, with everyone, that for Thomas to compete, he will need to be at 2018 level or close. so probably unlikely.

but no matter. pog is a completely different beast.

pog stays healthy. pog dominates the tdf. rog vies for podium with G (only if G remains on his bike and is close to 2018 shape).
 
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lol.

what did rog do other than fade in the third week and prove to be unable to make huge differences? He can only punch in the last 500m and take bonuses. but even he realizes that he has to hold energy in reserve to try and outlast the last week (both vueltas compared to giro and tdf).

Thomas -- discount rog? really? lol! when exactly did rog dominate the tdf like thomas did in 2018? um...never. did not even do it in the vuelta.

I agree, however, with everyone, that for Thomas to compete, he will need to be at 2018 level or close. so probably unlikely.

but no matter. pog is a completely different beast.

pog stays healthy. pog dominates the tdf. rog vies for podium with G (only if G remains on his bike and is close to 2018 shape).
When you get a Tour where the #2 and #3 did the Giro and both lost a minute due to crash/mechanicals and you drop them like once in total and get beaten by both in the ITT that tells you all about the supposed dominance.

The Tour isn't the strongest race every year, nor is every Tour winner automatically better than than all the rest.
 
Its not even like G hasn't had good form since 2018, even with poor prep he was 2nd in 2019 TdF, and would likely have won the Giro less than a year ago without the stray bottle.
He would have won the Giro last year, with Tao, Ganna and Rohan riding support he'd have breezed through the field, assuming he rode to his capabilities. Even the 2019 tour I think he was capable of winning , but he had to support Bernal. He has a pretty great skill set, and he's really figured out how to maximize it, but he or Ineos will need to do something special to beat Pogacar in the Tour.
 
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When you get a Tour where the #2 and #3 did the Giro and both lost a minute due to crash/mechanicals and you drop them like once in total and get beaten by both in the ITT that tells you all about the supposed dominance.

The Tour isn't the strongest race every year, nor is every Tour winner automatically better than than all the rest.
To be fair, Thomas probably wins the ITT if he doen't take it easy in the final part. He knew only a crash would stop him from winning the Tour, so he was very cautious and took it easy, similar to today.

Also Froome got dropped multiple times on the climbs. He shouldn't have finished 3rd if Jumbo played it right.
 
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pog stays healthy. pog dominates the tdf. rog vies for podium with G (only if G remains on his bike and is close to 2018 shape).
Saying that Pogačar will dominate the Tour alone is a slight overstatement. Tadej only finished ahead (gaining time) of Primož on three occasions in stage race mountain/hill stages. Two times Roglič didn't exactly go all out to follow (stage 20 Vuelta, stage 8 Tour) and once he crashed (Vuelta stage 9). On all other occasions Roglič was either equal on time or gained time. This season they have been prety equal uphill so far. So I really don't see a precedent that would show that Pogačar will just start dropping Roglič at will on mountain stages... unless you expect him to win both TTs with 2 minutes advantage?
 
Saying that Pogačar will dominate the Tour alone is a slight overstatement. Tadej only finished ahead (gaining time) of Primož on three occasions in stage race mountain/hill stages. Two times Roglič didn't exactly go all out to follow (stage 20 Vuelta, stage 8 Tour) and once he crashed (Vuelta stage 9). On all other occasions Roglič was either equal on time or gained time. This season they have been prety equal uphill so far. So I really don't see a precedent that would show that Pogačar will just start dropping Roglič at will on mountain stages... unless you expect him to win both TTs with 2 minutes advantage?
it’s more about being a year older.

Pog is likely to improve greatly from age 21 to 22, Rog will likely stay the same or may weaken slightly.

I have just seen it before and Pog’s (surprising) win was like Fignon’s in 1983 at 22. The next year Fignon whacked everyone.

Pog is already clearly better than he was last spring.
 
When you get a Tour where the #2 and #3 did the Giro and both lost a minute due to crash/mechanicals and you drop them like once in total and get beaten by both in the ITT that tells you all about the supposed dominance.

The Tour isn't the strongest race every year, nor is every Tour winner automatically better than than all the rest.
that’s a somewhat interesting take on what happened. Thomas was largely kept in check by team tactics to keep Froome In the game. He utterly dominated the two big mountain stages, winning them both in a row with ease. He didn’t have to do anything after that. The tour was over. Even Dumoulin said that Thomas could’ve dropped them all anytime he wanted. He dominated that tour. It was completely over after Alpe d’huez.

And who was fourth, trailing both riders who had also done the Giro? And who collapsed in the last time trial in the third week?
 

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