He's coming home!!!! Alejandro Valverde comeback thread.

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What will Valverde's impact be the cycling world in 2012

  • Nuclear Holocoust

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2017 Bala would have been a favourite on this year's world course. How does the new course alter his TDF plans, if at all?
None I would think. He’s not riding for GC at the TDF, and is using it to find some form. Both else and Mas will head to La Vuelta to where either could ride for the GC depending on their legs in sucks a weird season. We really don’t know how this will play out. I guess Bala could ride for GC in Spain, but it’s going to be difficult if Froome shows up motivated and in form. With the WC taking place before the Vuelta- he could ride himself into form and the peak for the WC and then still have the form for a Vuelta.

So for the Vuelta confirmed so far:

Froome
Mas
Valverde
Pinot
Dan Martin
Zakarin (seems to be using the TDF as warmup)
Aru (who knows how he’ll be)
Mollema
Buchmann

It looks stacked on paper, but we don’t know how good any of them will be. If Froome finds a DeLorian and returns to pre-injury form than its his to lose. If he is still a shell of himself, then Pinot would likely be the favorite with Buchmann and Mas. Valverde could see a lane to the podium, but he hasn’t sounded like a rider really focused on another Top 5 at La Vuelta. At the same time, it is his favorite race and if he comes out of the TDF in better shape than Mas, who knows?
 
None I would think. He’s not riding for GC at the TDF, and is using it to find some form. Both else and Mas will head to La Vuelta to where either could ride for the GC depending on their legs in sucks a weird season. We really don’t know how this will play out. I guess Bala could ride for GC in Spain, but it’s going to be difficult if Froome shows up motivated and in form. With the WC taking place before the Vuelta- he could ride himself into form and the peak for the WC and then still have the form for a Vuelta.

So for the Vuelta confirmed so far:

Froome
Mas
Valverde
Pinot
Dan Martin
Zakarin (seems to be using the TDF as warmup)
Aru (who knows how he’ll be)
Mollema
Buchmann

It looks stacked on paper, but we don’t know how good any of them will be. If Froome finds a DeLorian and returns to pre-injury form than its his to lose. If he is still a shell of himself, then Pinot would likely be the favorite with Buchmann and Mas. Valverde could see a lane to the podium, but he hasn’t sounded like a rider really focused on another Top 5 at La Vuelta. At the same time, it is his favorite race and if he comes out of the TDF in better shape than Mas, who knows?
I think you're forgetting a certain Mister Mikel Landa.
 
Reactions: perico
2017 Bala would have been a favourite on this year's world course. How does the new course alter his TDF plans, if at all?
The only two goals he has mentioned at all since a possible return to racing back in June has been Worlds and Vuelta. If he can find some form he would have a good chance at the podium if not another rainbow jersey. To me an in form Valverde (esp 2017 or 2018 form) he'd be unbeatable on this course.

None I would think. He’s not riding for GC at the TDF, and is using it to find some form. Both else and Mas will head to La Vuelta to where either could ride for the GC depending on their legs in sucks a weird season. We really don’t know how this will play out. I guess Bala could ride for GC in Spain, but it’s going to be difficult if Froome shows up motivated and in form. With the WC taking place before the Vuelta- he could ride himself into form and the peak for the WC and then still have the form for a Vuelta.

So for the Vuelta confirmed so far:

Froome
Mas
Valverde
Pinot
Dan Martin
Zakarin (seems to be using the TDF as warmup)
Aru (who knows how he’ll be)
Mollema
Buchmann

It looks stacked on paper, but we don’t know how good any of them will be. If Froome finds a DeLorian and returns to pre-injury form than its his to lose. If he is still a shell of himself, then Pinot would likely be the favorite with Buchmann and Mas. Valverde could see a lane to the podium, but he hasn’t sounded like a rider really focused on another Top 5 at La Vuelta. At the same time, it is his favorite race and if he comes out of the TDF in better shape than Mas, who knows?
As for la Vuelta:
There is no guarantee Froome will ever find a form that is good enough for a GC top 10 let alone a podium again.
If Valverde can find his form, Spanish mountains suit his skills much better than other mountains do. Part of why he now holds the record for most ever podiums at la Vuelta.

With Pinot I'm not sure if the Spanish mountains suit him as well as the Giro and Tour mountains do. However, he'd still be a favorite provided he can get through 3 weeks.
There's also Landa.
Mas and Valverde appear to actually work well together.
 
Reactions: joe_papp and perico
The only two goals he has mentioned at all since a possible return to racing back in June has been Worlds and Vuelta. If he can find some form he would have a good chance at the podium if not another rainbow jersey. To me an in form Valverde (esp 2017 or 2018 form) he'd be unbeatable on this course.



As for la Vuelta:
There is no guarantee Froome will ever find a form that is good enough for a GC top 10 let alone a podium again.
If Valverde can find his form, Spanish mountains suit his skills much better than other mountains do. Part of why he now holds the record for most ever podiums at la Vuelta.

With Pinot I'm not sure if the Spanish mountains suit him as well as the Giro and Tour mountains do. However, he'd still be a favorite provided he can get through 3 weeks.
There's also Landa.
Mas and Valverde appear to actually work well together.
Pinot finds one grand tour more than enough, don't think he will be a serious threat possibly a stage winner. Froome not being top 10 would be a stretch unless everyone is not being honest about his recovery. Missing the podium I could see but not missing the top 10 and the Vuelta field is often not super strong sometimes apart from the top five or so and it can favour the riders that haven't raced much as it comes at the end of the season when everyone else has raced a full season though this year the season is compressed. Valverde won his worlds just at the right time, he is on the decline now, at his age that is normal, be surprised if he podiumed the Vuelta, top five wouldn't surprise. Still he rode very well in last year's Vuelta and he can never be written off completely. One day racing is completely different of course and he is always a chance in those races.
 
Pinot finds one grand tour more than enough, don't think he will be a serious threat possibly a stage winner. Froome not being top 10 would be a stretch unless everyone is not being honest about his recovery. Missing the podium I could see but not missing the top 10 and the Vuelta field is often not super strong sometimes apart from the top five or so and it can favour the riders that haven't raced much as it comes at the end of the season when everyone else has raced a full season though this year the season is compressed. Valverde won his worlds just at the right time, he is on the decline now, at his age that is normal, be surprised if he podiumed the Vuelta, top five wouldn't surprise. Still he rode very well in last year's Vuelta and he can never be written off completely. One day racing is completely different of course and he is always a chance in those races.
With Pinot it may just depend on what happens with the Tour. I'm more of the mind that with Froome's recovery it's been a lot of PR from the team and optimism from Froome more than reality. Reality is likely healing alright, but the injuries themselves are injuries no one has come back to their previous level from. Valverde did say before Innsbruck that was his last real shot at winning the Worlds. It was the one thing he needed to be able to retire without wondering if he could have done something more. Many of his lifelong friends have said the Worlds is the race he always talked about winning as a kid. It wasn't the Tour, it was the Worlds. Is last year's Vuelta podium his final Vuelta podium? It's possible. He also got a dream with it which was that podium with the rainbow jersey. It's also possible he could get another podium IF he can find his form at the right time for it. The Vuelta fits him and he loves it. Even when it was his 3rd GT of the year Contador said you can't count Valverde out because it's him and la Vuelta. If I remember right Contador said he'd never seen a race and rider so perfectly matched to each other as la Vuelta and Valverde.
 
With Pinot it may just depend on what happens with the Tour. I'm more of the mind that with Froome's recovery it's been a lot of PR from the team and optimism from Froome more than reality. Reality is likely healing alright, but the injuries themselves are injuries no one has come back to their previous level from. Valverde did say before Innsbruck that was his last real shot at winning the Worlds. It was the one thing he needed to be able to retire without wondering if he could have done something more. Many of his lifelong friends have said the Worlds is the race he always talked about winning as a kid. It wasn't the Tour, it was the Worlds. Is last year's Vuelta podium his final Vuelta podium? It's possible. He also got a dream with it which was that podium with the rainbow jersey. It's also possible he could get another podium IF he can find his form at the right time for it. The Vuelta fits him and he loves it. Even when it was his 3rd GT of the year Contador said you can't count Valverde out because it's him and la Vuelta. If I remember right Contador said he'd never seen a race and rider so perfectly matched to each other as la Vuelta and Valverde.
Yes Valverde has won too many races to be written off but last year he was also helped by the failure of some of the favourites. I wouldn't be that surprised if he made another podium. As for Pinot I don't think he has the constitution to do two good grand tours in one season for GC. A few years ago he dropped out of the Tour a long way from the finish and managed to win a few stages in the Vuelta. That scenario wouldn't surprise me even if he completed the Tour. The Vuelta always has a few surprises. If Yates can win a Vuelta then Pinot should be good enough to win one........should be ....... I mean if Pogacar and Valverde can make the Vuelta podium you have to wonder what riders like Lopez and others are doing ? Usually not living up to their potential. I wonder if Chaves will do the Vuelta ?
 
Yes Valverde has won too many races to be written off but last year he was also helped by the failure of some of the favourites. I wouldn't be that surprised if he made another podium. As for Pinot I don't think he has the constitution to do two good grand tours in one season for GC. A few years ago he dropped out of the Tour a long way from the finish and managed to win a few stages in the Vuelta. That scenario wouldn't surprise me even if he completed the Tour. The Vuelta always has a few surprises. If Yates can win a Vuelta then Pinot should be good enough to win one........should be ....... I mean if Pogacar and Valverde can make the Vuelta podium you have to wonder what riders like Lopez and others are doing ? Usually not living up to their potential. I wonder if Chaves will do the Vuelta ?
Yes, it's not like there are many 40 years we wouldn't be surprised to get making a GT podium. Then again riders typically are retiring before they are 40 as well. You may very well be correct about Pinot. He does have issues completing one a year for GC. (Hoping it makes it to end of this one). Well Valverde and la Vuelta are a great combination. A Spaniard who has the right skill set that matches la Vuelta with a team that allows him to actually target it, plus being a Spanish team la Vuelta means basically as much to them as the Tour does. Likely a combination of things help there. Sure there is some luck, to have 7 podiums in one GT there has to be a little luck, but you also have to be a very good GC rider to capitalize on it as well.

I guess there also comes a point to ask if some riders are capable of living up to that potential. Obviously Chaves has had some health issues.
 
Yes Valverde has won too many races to be written off but last year he was also helped by the failure of some of the favourites. I wouldn't be that surprised if he made another podium. As for Pinot I don't think he has the constitution to do two good grand tours in one season for GC. A few years ago he dropped out of the Tour a long way from the finish and managed to win a few stages in the Vuelta. That scenario wouldn't surprise me even if he completed the Tour. The Vuelta always has a few surprises. If Yates can win a Vuelta then Pinot should be good enough to win one........should be ....... I mean if Pogacar and Valverde can make the Vuelta podium you have to wonder what riders like Lopez and others are doing ? Usually not living up to their potential. I wonder if Chaves will do the Vuelta ?
At this stage it is planned for A.Yates, Nieve and Chaves to do the Vuelta - Time will tell.
 
For anyone interested. It's in Spanish, but it talks about what Valverde typically eats during a Grand Tour, (although this would also more or less be what the Movistar riders in general are eating as well).

This is the end of the article for those who don't want to read the entire thing:
El murciano acostumbra a comer arroz en el desayuno y en el post etapa (comida) mientras que deja la pasta para la cena.
En cuanto a cantidades, Gimeno comenta en Zikloland, que suelen rondar los 180 gramos de arroz y los 250 de pasta en seco.
Las proteínas se obtienen fundamentalmente del pollo, el pavo y el atún. La ternera es otro alimento que Valverde añade de forma más esporádica. La cantidad diaria seria también de unos 180-200 gramos.
Otros alimentos indispensables para el ex campeón del mundo son la leche de arroz, la avena y los huevos duros.
En la cena Alejandro Valverde también añade 60 gramos de espárragos y un yogurt con rodajas de piña que como alimento diurético evita la retención de líquidos. Un par de frutas diarias también se integran de forma fija en el menú de uno de los mejores ciclistas españoles de la historia.
Evidentemente a todo ello hay que sumarle la nutrición que Valverde sigue durante la etapa. El murciano ingiere entre otros alimentos, geles, barritas energéticas y pequeñas porciones de mini bocadillo o incluso de pastel.

The Murcian usually eat rice for breakfast and in the post-stage (lunch) while leaving pasta for dinner.
Regarding quantities, Gimeno comments in Zikloland, that they tend to be around 180 grams of rice and 250 grams of dry pasta.
Proteins are obtained mainly from chicken, turkey and tuna. Veal is another food that Valverde adds more sporadically. The daily amount would also be about 180-200 grams.
Other essential foods for the former world champion are rice milk, oatmeal and hard-boiled eggs.
At dinner Alejandro Valverde also adds 60 grams of asparagus and a yogurt with pineapple slices that as a diuretic food prevents fluid retention. A couple of daily fruits are also permanently integrated into the menu of one of the best Spanish cyclists in history.
Obviously to all this we must add the nutrition that Valverde follows during the stage. The Murcian eats, among other foods, gels, energy bars and small portions of mini sandwiches or even cake.

 
I've seen him on screen at least 5 times, and he's also carefully dodging the top 5.

Has Valverde said anything in particular about this Tour? Cause it seems a lot like last year slowly riding into form for La Vuelta.
Other than saying at some point after a stage last weekend that his form is getting better, he really hasn't said much. He and Mas did the media interviews on the rest day. Mostly he was saying that their form is continuing to improve. The only other thing is really said was it's going to take a bit longer to get into form because he's 40 and not a kid anymore. As for the Tour he hasn't said it, but he's basically decided the best use of his abilities are that of guide and teacher for Mas right now.
 
Hmm...

Another top 10? I wouldn't have thought it possible. Now it seems almost inevitable. What he can use it for I wouldn't be able to say. I just think he likes riding GC finales.
No kidding. I'm with you, I wouldn't have thought it possible, but after today it's definitely possible. He also said he was cramping in the last few KMs of today's stage which is part of why he couldn't do more than what he did. It sounds like he's planning on trying to both help Enric get a higher placing and get himself another GC top 10. He did say a couple years ago that he prefers racing GTs to chasing one day or one week races. He said something about GTs aren't as tiring as chasing other races for the same number of race days. Maybe he wants to put that GT top 10 record so far out there that we'll never see anyone come close to it again in our lifetime?
 

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