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Giro d'Italia 2011: Stage 14 Lienz to Monte Zoncolan

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May 12, 2010
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It's amazing how the Giro seems capable of conjuring up some new beyond HC climb almost every year. Now it's the Crostis. I really really hope that some daredevil like Rujano will attack on the Crostis. With the strade bianche and tricky descent following the Crostis, this is a stage that really lends itself to an early attack. But with the Zoncolan looming in the distance, for once I can't blame the riders if they choose to save their legs.

Still, the Crostis is so difficult, that even with a 'moderate' pace, I doubt there will be more than 30 or 40 guys grouped at the foot of the Zoncolan.
 
Lanark said:
It's amazing how the Giro seems capable of conjuring up some new beyond HC climb almost every year. Now it's the Crostis. I really really hope that some daredevil like Rujano will attack on the Crostis. With the strade bianche and tricky descent following the Crostis, this is a stage that really lends itself to an early attack. But with the Zoncolan looming in the distance, for once I can't blame the riders if they choose to save their legs.

Still, the Crostis is so difficult, that even with a 'moderate' pace, I doubt there will be more than 30 or 40 guys grouped at the foot of the Zoncolan.

I think 30-40 riders is too much...
 
Jul 21, 2010
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Only the feeling of Bush himself planting a bullet between the eyes of good old Bin Laden would compare to that of the triumphing rider of this stage. Bloody, messy, and pretty damn satisfactory!

The winner of this stage is going to be the man!
 
Nov 23, 2009
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The Hitch, I am going to sign up to Digg just so I can Digg this forum post because it is that legendary. I will also email it to Anthony Tan and ask him to contact you for writing tuition. Bravo on a fantastic introduction! Now I know more than ever that I have to block out my whole day just for this.

The rider who wins this stage would deserve to go down in history as "the guy who won the most epic Grand Tour stage ever". The winner of this stage deserves to be remembered. I fear though, that he will just be another name along side Bart De Clerq, John Gadret, Oscar Gatto and others as 2011 Giro stage winners.

How will this stage pan out? Teams won't need to do the selection, it will happen by itself. Every team bar Saxo will probably send a rider in a breakaway so they don't have the pressure of setting the pace. Riders in 10-20 GC position will unsuccessfully try to attack early and bridge up to the breakaway. The breakaway will be caught at the Crotsis ascent, and a super elite group of 10-15 riders will be together at this stage. They will stay together during the descent (nobody will attack here, not even Sanchez would if he were here) and it will be a battle on Zoncolan. The approximate time gaps at the peak of the Crotsis will not reduce at the end of the stage due to the danger of the descent and the difficulty of the Zoncolan. Riders will cross the finish line alone or in pairs, and the time gaps will be minutes.

I would love Sastre to win this. He has not been able to keep up with any groups though, which worries me. But I think he's the coolest old man cyclist going around.

In reality, this will be a victory for Contador, Anton or Rujano.
 
Jul 8, 2010
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The best introduction what I have ever read, egal it's about a Giro stage or a book, or anything else. I just can feel the pain in my legs. Can't wait for Saturday.
 
Bavarianrider said:
If someone of the favs has the guts to attack early on the crostis he has a shot at becoming alegend.

Yes, that is for sure. Maybe Michele will have a go. Can't see too many risking it though. Of course, plenty of lesser names will try and break on the Crostis. Serpa, who still holds a reasonable GC position should try and get away, so he can be with Rujano on Zoncolan. Other teams will try that too.

But it would just make for amazing viewing if a top5 contender had a 2 minute head start on Contador at the base of Zoncolan.
 
After the Etna triumph I have little doubt Contador will want to win this stage in spectacular fashion, and more than likely succeed in doing that. The question is, wait until the Zoncolan or go solo on the Crostis already (assuming nobody can stay with him)? If he shows he has balls like the champions of the olden days and chooses the latter, I'll reverse my opinion of Contador and become a fan. :)
 
Jan the Man said:
I am not sure. I get the feeling that Contador likes to make history. I think he will want to win on the Zoncolan.

That may not be inconsistent with racing sensibly.

I doubt he'll want to be isolated going over the crostis, so I wouldn't be surprised to see him let people off the front there and continue to push in a group with Porte etc - once he's on to the Zoncalon I'm sure he'll be happy to head off at his own pace, I'm just not expecting him to risk going over a dodgy surface and tough descent, isolated from team mates.
 
Apr 9, 2011
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Waterloo Sunrise said:
That may not be inconsistent with racing sensibly.

I doubt he'll want to be isolated going over the crostis, so I wouldn't be surprised to see him let people off the front there and continue to push in a group with Porte etc - once he's on to the Zoncalon I'm sure he'll be happy to head off at his own pace, I'm just not expecting him to risk going over a dodgy surface and tough descent, isolated from team mates.

I agree except for the Porte etc I think it will be the etc without the Porte, doesn´t seem to have the climbing legs at the moment and will be out the back pretty early I think.
 

Barrus

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Apr 28, 2010
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spalco said:
After the Etna triumph I have little doubt Contador will want to win this stage in spectacular fashion, and more than likely succeed in doing that. The question is, wait until the Zoncolan or go solo on the Crostis already (assuming nobody can stay with him)? If he shows he has balls like the champions of the olden days and chooses the latter, I'll reverse my opinion of Contador and become a fan. :)

I really, really hope he will go on the Crostis, but I doubt it. Neither he nor any of the other contenders will want to be without at least 1 team-mate on the top of the Crostis, this mainly due to two reasons. 1 the chance of flats or other mechanicals on the part of unpaved road. 2 the lack of team cars on the Crostis and the Crostis descent.

If you have any sort of problem on the top you will need to wait very long for any help, if you are isolated and if you have no teammates you are dependant on the help of the neutral mechanics. You will really want a teammate there, just in case you'll need a new bike
 
Barrus said:
I really, really hope he will go on the Crostis, but I doubt it. Neither he nor any of the other contenders will want to be without at least 1 team-mate on the top of the Crostis, this mainly due to two reasons. 1 the chance of flats or other mechanicals on the part of unpaved road. 2 the lack of team cars on the Crostis and the Crostis descent.

If you have any sort of problem on the top you will need to wait very long for any help, if you are isolated and if you have no teammates you are dependant on the help of the neutral mechanics. You will really want a teammate there, just in case you'll need a new bike

Yeah, it probably doesn't make sense, but it would be ****ing epic. ;)
 
Jun 1, 2010
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Epic introduction for an epic stage. People talk about the winner of this stage becoming an instand legend, but this stage will produce many legends: every single rider who makes it through this hell.

I really hope someone will attack on the Crostis and have a bit of a head start on Contador on the Zoncolan. And, I've said this multiple times before, I'd love to see Nibali attack on the descent and start the Zoncolan with a two minutes head start on Contador. And to the guy who said Nibali's descending is overrated: dude, did you see the Strade Bianchi stage this year? And he wasn't even trying there! Might be just me as kind of a Nibali fanboy seeing things through green-coloured Liquigas glasses, but I can really see him getting time on that descend.

There's so many possibilities for everyone to win or lose time here. Guys like Sastre, Rodriguez and Anton could instantly be back in the race for podium or even the win if they have a good day. And Contador could easily fail completely and lose a lot of time here. Furthermore, I'm curious to see how Kreuziger, another GC rider I have a weak spot for, will handle this stage.

Didn't think this would happen after what happened with Weylandt, but I'm really excited again :)