Teams & Riders 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

    Votes: 16 100.0%

  • Total voters
    16
I think Valverde has made a good fist of his talents - a GC rider with a strong sprint. But his longevity in the sport is almost without parallel. He seems to have been around forever. In 2002 I remember being caught up in the Armstrong hype. Then I have clear memory of AV outsprinting Armstrong for that TdF stage win at Courchevel in 2005 TdF. But it was AV's victory in the 2018 worlds at Innsbruck won me over on that monster course that earned my respect.

Can anyone name one rider who raced to entertain rather than to win with their born ability? Don't suggest Contador. Cycling is an extremely physically demanding sport, nobody has the spare energy to entertain rather than win. Only riders like JA do a little showboating but this is after the win is already secured. Being courageous isn't the same as deliberately entertaining. And wins are different to gaining time. AV couldn't quite match the best GC riders, but he was close. If you had AV's sprint would you attack knowing you just had to hold the wheels to outsprint at the finish?

I see above discussion of Cancellara. Well he is just as guilty of bad tactics but had a similar problem - his rivals knew his strengths and rode to counter him. Go watch the 2009 worlds in Mendrisio if you are in any doubt.

Valverde has had a great career. Kudos to him. But there was hype both for and against. Bottom line is he was one of the most consistent all-round riders of the last 20 years and deserves respect from all cycling fans for that. He certainly has my respect.
 
Valverde is eternal, he's not gonna retire in 2022.
I hope you are right! :)

I hope he is the Spanish Davide Rebellin: ride 20 years as a pro cyclist, and then spend the next 25 years announcing you will retire after next season, but in fact stay pro until 55 or 60.

Fleche Wallonne 2021 for example has shown how good Valverde still is. In the Vuelta, he was with the best climbers until he crashed out. If you consider cycling has become faster over the last 20 years, I strongly suppose Valverde 2021 or 2022 is almost as strong as he was when he beat Armstrong in Courchevel 2005…
 
Fleche Wallonne 2021 for example has shown how good Valverde still is. In the Vuelta, he was with the best climbers until he crashed out. If you consider cycling has become faster over the last 20 years, I strongly suppose Valverde 2021 or 2022 is almost as strong as he was when he beat Armstrong in Courchevel 2005…
Probably, yeah. Top 5 in all Ardennes Classics + Il Lombardia the year you turn 41 is pretty crazy.

But he will retire after 2022, I don't doubt that. He has never been as definitive about it as the last month.
 
He's been much more definite about retiring this time than he has been before. I do it's highly likely this is his final year.

I hope you are right! :)

I hope he is the Spanish Davide Rebellin: ride 20 years as a pro cyclist, and then spend the next 25 years announcing you will retire after next season, but in fact stay pro until 55 or 60.

Fleche Wallonne 2021 for example has shown how good Valverde still is. In the Vuelta, he was with the best climbers until he crashed out. If you consider cycling has become faster over the last 20 years, I strongly suppose Valverde 2021 or 2022 is almost as strong as he was when he beat Armstrong in Courchevel 2005
With what we're seeing for times and how fast races overall are being ridden now, he very likely is. It's crazy to think about it when you realize he's 41 and he's been a pro since he was 21 (turned 22 his first year as a pro).
 
Great pic! Not just AV on his way to his only Grand Tour win but also the unique terrain of the Vuelta compared to the TdF and Giro.
:beercheers:!

For a reason that now escapes me, I had access to all of the official photos that the race organization released daily for media use during that year's Vuelta. Quite a few of Don Alejandro, iirc. Some of them are in an album on my FB (hah, remember FB!? lol):

 
Here's another shot in which Valvede rides alongside Evans, climbing hard with him, while they lead a small group:


Click on image to see full size.
This is from the 8th stage, right?

Not a bad group.

Basso behind and A. Schleck further down. He didnt finish this stage, I see.

Tom Danielson for Garmin. He was 4th in the GC at the time.

I believe in the white and lightblue helmet between Valverde and Tom Danielson is Ezequiel Mosquera for Xacobeo-Galicia.

The red/white helmet in the back of the picture, I dont know. Maybe Moncutié who finished 2nd on the day? Dont remember the stage, if he was in the break or something instead.

Behind Basso should be Gesink for Rabobank, who finished 3rd on the stage. Cunego won, before Moncoutié.
 
Reactions: Lui98 and SHAD0W93
This is from the 8th stage, right?

Not a bad group.

Basso behind and A. Schleck further down. He didnt finish this stage, I see.

Tom Danielson for Garmin. He was 4th in the GC at the time.

I believe in the white and lightblue helmet between Valverde and Tom Danielson is Ezequiel Mosquera for Xacobeo-Galicia.

The red/white helmet in the back of the picture, I dont know. Maybe Moncutié who finished 2nd on the day? Dont remember the stage, if he was in the break or something instead.

Behind Basso should be Gesink for Rabobank, who finished 3rd on the stage. Cunego won, before Moncoutié.
Back when Gesink still seemed to be on a path to world domination!

It's isn't from stage 8, cause Evans wasn't in the lead until after the finish. So it must be from Xorret de Catí the following day, which also explains the amount of riders being out of the saddle.
It's also Fränk and not Andy Schleck, who must have been wearing the LUX jersey during the race, before he exited with stomach cramps.

The fact that he's not even in the picture perfectly displays the less visible Samu from that Vuelta (in contrast to his 2007 race).
 
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Here's another shot in which Valvede rides alongside Evans, climbing hard with him, while they lead a small group:


Click on image to see full size.
Should be the legendary climb, Xorret de Catí, if im not mistaken! A murito before muritos became popular. Always a great climb in La Vuelta, and if you ask me growing up cycling-wise in the 00's, definitely what I think of when you say short, steep climbs.
 
Reactions: Koronin
Back when Gesink still seemed to be on a path to world domination!

It's isn't from stage 8, cause Evans wasn't in the lead until after the finish. So it must be from Xorret de Catí the following day, which also explains the amount of riders being out of the saddle.
It's also Fränk and not Andy Schleck, who must have been wearing the LUX jersey during the race, before he exited with stomach cramps.

The fact that he's not even in the picture perfectly displays the less visible Samu from that Vuelta (in contrast to his 2007 race).
Samu had crashed the day before in the descent of Tudons and dropped early in Xorret de Catí.
 
Reactions: Samu Cuenca

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