So far..Valv.Piti said:Just doing it easy today. Great class as always, haters gonna hate (especially Netserk).
The only one in the entire world who could drop Valverde at that climb is his own teammate. Contador was actually better than I expected, but Bala had that little extra. Its great watching those two duelling, you can feel the intensity, its personal. Valverde sprinting away from Contador reminded me of Mende the year he finished on the podium, probably his best year, 2015. This year so far looks juicy, I hope he can close the race with another stage tomorrow.
Erm.. he has won the TT/Prologue in this very race twice before. Last time in 2014 where he put time into Dumoulin, Izagirre, Kiryienka, Thomas, Wiggins and Porte. Not bad for someone who isn't a good time trialist.portugal11 said:
I was being ironic. Very ironic.Velolover2 said:
Valverde rides to win P-N and therefore needs to beat Contador, the main rival along with Porte. But you can tell how Valverde always wants to prove himself better than Contador in every race they enter together. Cant you?Red Rick said:I rather think Valverde rides PN to win a race he's never won before than to beat Contador. If Contador is in similar shape to last year he'll be very hard to beat.
Ah, ok.Valv.Piti said:I was being ironic. Very ironic.Velolover2 said:
Yeah, I hope he sticks with just P-N, then Basque or Catalunya and hit the Ardennes hard. Getting three solid stage races in, while being fresh and able to put out decent power for all of them, should set him up really well for later in the season especially.Valv.Piti said:Valverde can't possibly be better in Strade Bianche than he was in 2014 when he really animated the race (or 2015, can't quite remember), but yet still got comfortably beat uphill by Stybar and GVA. When you have Paris-Nice the day after and when the duel between you and Contador has gotten personal, you go all out at Paris-Nice.
Couillolle is a long, classic Alpine climb. Its not shallow, but not really steep either. Last time I saw a really good Alberto at at long climb was Mortirolo, almost 2 years ago. And when the gradient isn't steeper than it is, I see very good chances of Valverde holding Contador's wheel and hunt for bonus seconds the rest of the race. The TT also suits Valverde really well.
And then you have Porte. Possible the favourite for P-N when its all said and done anyways.
Contador showed enough in the stage to Nice to make me think he was the best climber in the race. I think last year's hilly tt's and MTT's are perhaps better indications of how he'll ride the TT in PN than last year's prologue. Porte hasn't done that much in ITTs outside of pure MTT's in the last few years, though the ITT isn't bad for Valverde either.Valv.Piti said:Valverde rides to win P-N and therefore needs to beat Contador, the main rival along with Porte. But you can tell how Valverde always wants to prove himself better than Contador in every race they enter together. Cant you?Red Rick said:I rather think Valverde rides PN to win a race he's never won before than to beat Contador. If Contador is in similar shape to last year he'll be very hard to beat.
What makes you think that? He was super impressive on the stage to Nice and would probably have won the race if not for the cancellations, but was very mediocre in both the ITT and on the MTF.
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