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How to Eliminate Another Contador Schleck One.Two

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Of course there are other ways to skin a cat - Caisse formed an echelon and put time into Contador in Paris-Nice, for example, and there was that bizarre Giro stage where the favourites bridged across to the escape on a flat stage and Pozzato won with Vino, Scarponi and others up there, while Evans was busy punching Daniele Righi.

Contador and/or Schleck can be worked over, but it takes at least two, preferably three or more top riders from a variety of teams to do it. We saw Contador worked over at Castilla y León, by three elite climbers (Igor Antón, Ezequiel Mosquera and Juan Mauricio Soler), which eventually allowed Antón to put time into him. At the Tour too much is riding on the race for riders to a) take the risk of attacking; b) work together to potentially gain time for a rival.

Again, it comes down to the old adage that the Giro and Vuelta have 10 guys who want to win, the Tour has 30 guys who don't want to lose. You find that people in 7th or 8th don't want to attack lest they lose that all-important top 10 position. Look at how it was Garmin who chased back the stage 16 attack with Horner and Plaza in it, so that they could make sure that the two didn't make it into the top 10 and threaten Hesjedal's position.
 

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The way to do it is simple, lets ignore the time trial and bad day ideas....
This leaves one section in the tour where 2 GC favorites are clearly superior to Contador and Shleck, this is the downhill. Nibali and Sanchez if they can make it over the top with or close to the duo can then attack safe in the knowledge they are superior and take time. In TDF 2010 it should have been on the Gap stage, the stage 15 and the back of madeleine. It may not win the tour but its a start, it could be used to gain time before a final climb as well, for these 2 great descenders it is actually a simple low risk stratergy
 
THe problem with this is that tdf is every man for himself. Basso and Sastre arent going to make a deal to stop AC AS podium.
As to who can challenge.
Can Henao maybe challenge them?

Also Valverde in 2012 if they reintroduce time bonuses.

As for tactics, As and AC may be the strongest in the mountains but they arent really tested by anyone else. They are the strongest because all the gc contenders reach all the mountains together and equally strong. I remember in 09, every stage in the build up, Stephen Roche asked "when are Sastre, Evans, Menchov, Schleck bros going to attack to get back time". This year was pretty much the same.

The sort of move that could work is what Kreuziger attempted on stage 16 to pau. He went with teammate Szmyd into a break and this forced Astana to work hard from the start. Everyone was licking their lips as to what this might do to Astana overt 2 cat 1 and 2 hc mountains. Unfortunately Roman wasnt strong enough and the group fell apart. But with a bit of luck and perhaps a stronger Roman (he has shown better form before) the plan may have worked.

This is similar to what happened in the giro. You might say L aquilla stage wasnt planned but teams do make mistakes and it is worth a try. On hard hilly/ medium mountain stages where the hills are present from the start, have contenders try to get in the break. This forces the other teams to chase and can tire them out. + you can get lucky

1 other example from this year, caisse to their credit tried it on stage 9. LLS isnt a good enough climber unfortunately but credit to them, they tried it.

And if you have a good team mate have him go into the breaks. Like Vino this year on the Jallabert stage. His presence in the break forced Saxo to work hard, all stage. I think they were pretty tired by the end. Teams are not superhuman, they make mistakes (even more so if they ban radios). Its always worth a try. I think in this stage, vino got into the 2nd break not the first. You dont need to get into the break right at the start. You can wait 100k. You can make a deal with a few others. You can wait for the 1st break to get reeled in and then go.

Im hoping next year people like Menchov, Samu, Basso, perhaps vdb will have had enough of top 5 finishes and will try it. Im not saying attack on the flat but there is more to tdf than a time trial a few mtfs and 15 flat stages. There are medium mountain stages, hilly stages, early mountain stages (ie mountains come in begining of stage).

I know we have become accustomed to riders being so strong that only the mtfs worry them but im pretty sure the hilly stages hurt too and will hurt even more if an opponent is attacking on them.
 
The Hitch said:
1 other example from this year, caisse to their credit tried it on stage 9. LLS isnt a good enough climber unfortunately but credit to them, they tried it.

The problem for Luísle was more after that; once Gutiérrez had to peel off, Luísle did almost all the work himself; Moreau was dropped but chased back on. He was the one after the GC position, and Caisse had done almost all the driving work in the break, and so after dragging himself over the Col de la Madeleine, he was spent and unable to add much in the later stages. But he got himself up into the top 10 with that move; Caisse were inserting themselves into a GC they had no business being part of for the second time running (without Valverde or Rodríguez and with Soler injured they were sorely lacking a genuine GC candidate). They tried again with Rubén Plaza (who had been on excellent form and was 16th overall) getting in the break in stage 16, but once they got to the flat section Garmin put strong TT riders on the front to protect the top 10 position of Hesjedal; Caisse ended the Tour with Sánchez 11th and Plaza 12th, so they did a pretty reasonable job given their lack of a GC rider.

Unfortunately this is the only type of team that will get away with such an attack in the Tour; in the Giro or Vuelta more is possible, but the Tour is so super-controlled because so much is at stake that anybody who is considered a legitimate risk will be neutralised, either by the péloton or by the break themselves not wanting any part of it (see Evans). It's the same in all aspects of the Tour; in the Giro, the break could gain 10-12 minutes before it would be dragged back; in the Vuelta last year escapees made it to 20 minutes plus before the péloton started to drag them back. This allowed the escapees to dare to dream, and gave you something to think about during the race, and indeed escapees did win, whether by a clear minute (Lloyd in the Giro) or by mere centimetres (Anthony Roux in the Vuelta). What did we get in the Tour? As soon as the break got to three minutes, Kanstantin Siutsou got on the front and Columbia held it at that distance for 140km.
 
Libertine Seguros said:
The problem for Luísle was more after that; once Gutiérrez had to peel off, Luísle did almost all the work himself; Moreau was dropped but chased back on. He was the one after the GC position, and Caisse had done almost all the driving work in the break, and so after dragging himself over the Col de la Madeleine, he was spent and unable to add much in the later stages. But he got himself up into the top 10 with that move; Caisse were inserting themselves into a GC they had no business being part of for the second time running (without Valverde or Rodríguez and with Soler injured they were sorely lacking a genuine GC candidate). They tried again with Rubén Plaza (who had been on excellent form and was 16th overall) getting in the break in stage 16, but once they got to the flat section Garmin put strong TT riders on the front to protect the top 10 position of Hesjedal; Caisse ended the Tour with Sánchez 11th and Plaza 12th, so they did a pretty reasonable job given their lack of a GC rider.

But that is the whole point of a breakaway, that you will tire yourself out more than if you stay in the peloton and you risk losing everything. I love that caisse tried it (especially after they managed to insert themselves into the giro gc) but LLS did have 2 teamates in their with him. I dont think he could have goten away with 3 helpers. He was paced, first by Guiterez, then by Moreau and eventually had to do it himself. Thats the nature of a breakaway. If he wanted to be rested for the Madeline and have helpers, he would have stayed in the peloton. Instead he took the choice of trying to get a headstart on the madeline. The downside is you are going to be more tired and not going to have many teammates.

. What did we get in the Tour? As soon as the break got to three minutes, Kanstantin Siutsou got on the front and Columbia held it at that distance for 140km.

Thats still preferable to the sort of thing we got on stage 10 ( i think) where the escape consists entirely of people who have no business in any of the competitions and are just given a 10 minute lead to contest it between themselves while the peloton has a training ride. At least Columbia give us a good last 5 k or so.
 
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I can´t see anyone have a chance except of the Cobra, Jo.Rod. and Gesink (if he improves) to outclimb/challenge these two. Alliances seem to be a must.
But anyway there will be some TTs left, which are on Contadors side.
And lets hope the TTT won´t decide the Tour too early, when Cancellara puts the hammer down over 3/4 of the course. :eek:



Perhaps some goodresponders should just have a short visit to Ferrari.
Should be easy for anyone to beat AC/AS then.
What about big *** Grabsch ?

Just a joke. :)
 
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The Hitch said:
didnt work for AS did it when Cancellara solo was, surprise surprise, only good enough to lose 40 seconds to Astana.:rolleyes:

But the Schlecklet Team won´t have that much TT power, that Saxo has for sure.
And there will never be a TTT monster like Astana 2009 again. Never ever.
Perhaps Saxo will be close with Cancellara, Contador, Porte, Larsson,...but for sure better than Team Schlecklet.

But lets wait till all the transfers are finalized.
 
Cobblestoned said:
But the Schlecklet Team won´t have that much TT power, that Saxo has for sure.
And there will never be a TTT monster like Astana 2009 again. Never ever.
Perhaps Saxo will be close with Cancellara, Contador, Porte, Larsson,...but for sure better than Team Schlecklet.

But lets wait till all the transfers are finalized.

My point is (and i argued this passionately in another thread as well ) that no 1 tter will ever win you a ttt. So many people now say " contador has cancellara, he will get big gaps in the ttt".
Some of the contador fan boys even believe that contador and canc will 2 man it for the whole 22 k and win the thing.

My opinion is NO! you win ttts by having 9 or 8 strong riders sharing the pace. Cancellara might take bigger turns at the front, say 5 minutes instead of 3 minutes but the ttt will be won and lost on the strenght of the whole team, and Cancellara is just one fraction of the team.
 
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I really don't see Andy Schleck beating Contador next year, IMO his biggest opportunity he had was this year.

although I am a Contador fanboy I disagree with those who think that Saxo Bank is going to demolish Schleck's new radioshack team. In fact, it could end up being the opposite as Contador is getting a bunch of climbers domestiques (exception being Noval) which is a good idea seeing the big picture. I think the TTT is going to shake up the GC a bit but wont be a critical stage.

Schleck likes podium finishes and doesn't have the "all or nothing, risk it all" attitude it takes to maybe a stronger rival.

He also needs to work on his TT position, he has the power but he sits way too high. And he needs to be mentally tougher, on the stage to Spa after he crashed he was "fine" but he was basically crying right next to his bicycle and he took forever to get going again. Good thing the pack waited for him. But if he didn't work on these details while racing for Riis, it just won't happen IMO.
 
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I think their changing teams adds some desired uncertainty.

Cancellara will expect to be a protected rider, go for his stage wins and spend time wearing yellow, so the support for Contador will look a bit different, and Alberto will have to consider that the team will focus and spend energy on other goals along with his over all win. I expect more instructions from the team car in 2011 as well. And if Contador decides to race the Giro for the win, that makes his TdF less predictable.

Schlecklet is heading into the unknown with the new team even though there will be some familiar faces. Not having Cancellara near the top of the standings in early stages changes a lot, including simple things like how far back domestiques have to drop to reach the team car.

I still don't know about Schleck. After a less than stellar early season, and the injuries that hampered training and racing, I don't know how he was that strong at the Tour (considering that maybe a cleaner rest of the peloton played a part in the comparative appearance of strength).

But I consider that this year they were pretty much even, and they both have eleven months to get ready for next year's race. Contador is on vacation. Schleck will be putting in twenty-one quality days at the Vuelta, even if, or especially if, he's helping Frank. So in terms of preparation, I see him as way ahead of the game.

I think Nibali might have been in the mix this year if he hadn't had to replace Pellizotti at the Giro. Hopefully Kreuziger and some others can step up. Maybe guys like Cadel will aim to peak for the Tour instead of racing the Giro. A TTT and stage bonifications could help.

I'd be satisfied if it looks more like a competitive race between guys fighting to win and less like a Lifetime film about young love.
 
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theswordsman said:
I think their changing teams adds some desired uncertainty.

Cancellara will expect to be a protected rider, go for his stage wins and spend time wearing yellow, so the support for Contador will look a bit different, and Alberto will have to consider that the team will focus and spend energy on other goals along with his over all win. I expect more instructions from the team car in 2011 as well. And if Contador decides to race the Giro for the win, that makes his TdF less predictable.

Schlecklet is heading into the unknown with the new team even though there will be some familiar faces. Not having Cancellara near the top of the standings in early stages changes a lot, including simple things like how far back domestiques have to drop to reach the team car.

I still don't know about Schleck. After a less than stellar early season, and the injuries that hampered training and racing, I don't know how he was that strong at the Tour (considering that maybe a cleaner rest of the peloton played a part in the comparative appearance of strength).

But I consider that this year they were pretty much even, and they both have eleven months to get ready for next year's race. Contador is on vacation. Schleck will be putting in twenty-one quality days at the Vuelta, even if, or especially if, he's helping Frank. So in terms of preparation, I see him as way ahead of the game.

I think Nibali might have been in the mix this year if he hadn't had to replace Pellizotti at the Giro. Hopefully Kreuziger and some others can step up. Maybe guys like Cadel will aim to peak for the Tour instead of racing the Giro. A TTT and stage bonifications could help.

I'd be satisfied if it looks more like a competitive race between guys fighting to win and less like a Lifetime film about young love.

mmmm I think that their are taking risks moving from his teams, from their "secure zones", but Andy is taking a much higher risk moving to a new team which is not established yet, that doesn't have his roster complete, etc... that will affect him really much next year...

but in the case of Contador, He is moving to a established team, with one phylosophy, with objectives for next year, with a way to work already known and with an structure created a long time ago... the thing with Contador is if he can gain the hearts and create a good relationship with his new teammates, that are Schleck's friends and know him since a long time... OFC they are proffesionals but sometimes the heart can play something...

Now Contador must understand that in this new team he is not the ONLY and ABSOLUTE leader cuz there is a guy called Cancellara who is an star and has his own objectives for the season and the team is going to support him big time... this time is not only Contador, Contador, Contador... in Saxo everybody as their share, sometimes will be Cancellara, Porte, Larsson, etc... I really want to see how Alberto is going to react to this new way of work...

About what you said Swordman mmmm If We are talking about Le Tour I think that Cancellara will have the same behavior and opportunities that He had this year... OFC next year won't be a Prologue but, I think, will be 2 TT and Cancellara will have his shot there... I think that the problem will come with protected riders like Porte who is a rising star for GC and He wants his top spot in the GC... and is very unlikely that SBS bring sprinters like Haedo brothers to the next Tour...

mmm about the TTT well... Contador and Cancellara are not going to be alone... We can expect that SBS will take Larsson and Porte and a train: Cancellara - Contador - Larsson - Porte is a train to fear I think... the 5th rider just have to hang up there...

Which rider is in a worst position? Well Andy OFC but El Pistolero is not in a good position either... The thing will be what are going to be their teams and the Schedule that they are going to have for the next season... I'm expecting that El Pistolero is going to ride Le Tour - Vuelta... Giro - Tour is unlikely if Alberto is wanting to defend his Tour title...

Sorry for going off-topic...
 
Ryaguas said:
Now Contador must understand that in this new team he is not the ONLY and ABSOLUTE leader cuz there is a guy called Cancellara who is an star and has his own objectives for the season and the team is going to support him big time... this time is not only Contador, Contador, Contador... in Saxo everybody as their share, sometimes will be Cancellara, Porte, Larsson, etc... I really want to see how Alberto is going to react to this new way of work...

What about 2009. Astana was far from Contador Contador Contador. It was Levi for the Giro and Lance + Contador for the Tour and Vino for the Vuelta.

You might say Contador didnt ride the Giro or Vuelta but then again, he isnt going to ride against Cancellara in the spring Classics (apart from maybe lbl and even there he has shown he is willing to help teammates).

At least next year he is going to have the Tour all for himself compared to the Lance and Contador aproach to the 09 tour.
 
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The Hitch said:
What about 2009. Astana was far from Contador Contador Contador. It was Levi for the Giro and Lance + Contador for the Tour and Vino for the Vuelta

Yeah you are right... I'm missing that year and I'm so focused in what happened this year... mmmm but I can say in my favor that Levi or Kloeden are not the same kind of leader as Cancellara... Cancellara is a real leader with big achievements from this season and I guess that He want to repeat next season, also give it a try to LBL cuz FV is more Contador's style, He showed it early this year... mmmm I don't know but I want to see if Contador is not that selfish, as some ppl say, and is going to work for other riders early in the next season...

sorry for getting off-topic again...

and about the OP... What about a breakaway ala Pereiro???
 
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The guy that gifts away stages pretty much all the time is selfish?

Let's see.. Cancellara's big achievements for next year... Ronde van Vlaanderen- Contador won't ride in it, Paris-Roubaix- Contador won't ride in it, Milan-San Remo- Contador won't ride in it, ITT stages at the Tour- INDIVIDUAL, World championship RR/ITT- Not even in the same team.

Why would Contador work for Cancellara at a race like RvV and PR? That would be totally stupid. No serious GC contender participates in these races. Chances of breaking something are extremely high there and he wouldn't even be good enough to help Cancellara. And Cancellara can't win LBL or Giro di Lombardia. I seriously don't get how you think Contador is going to hamper Cancellara's season...
 
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El Pistolero said:
The guy that gifts away stages pretty much all the time is selfish?

Let's see.. Cancellara's big achievements for next year... Ronde van Vlaanderen- Contador won't ride in it, Paris-Roubaix- Contador won't ride in it, Milan-San Remo- Contador won't ride in it, ITT stages at the Tour- INDIVIDUAL, World championship RR/ITT- Not even in the same team.

Why would Contador work for Cancellara at a race like RvV and PR? That would be totally stupid. No serious GC contender participates in these races. Chances of breaking something are extremely high there and he wouldn't even be good enough to help Cancellara. And Cancellara can't win LBL or Giro di Lombardia. I seriously don't get how you think Contador is going to hamper Cancellara's season...

Is not that Contador is going to work for Cancellara in those races... the thing is that Cancellara is going to need good riders (not all the riders that Contador is going to need but some) for those races and maybe they are going to be a little bit tired for the moment that Contador is going to need them... could be a possibility...

I don't mean that Contador is going to work for Cancellara but He can work for Porte in some races... I don't know... I'm just managing some scenarios...

And I think that Cancellara can win LBL... LBL is a bingo... you just need to be in the winner break...
 
El Pistolero said:
The guy that gifts away stages pretty much all the time is selfish?

Let's see.. Cancellara's big achievements for next year... Ronde van Vlaanderen- Contador won't ride in it, Paris-Roubaix- Contador won't ride in it, Milan-San Remo- Contador won't ride in it, ITT stages at the Tour- INDIVIDUAL, World championship RR/ITT- Not even in the same team.

Why would Contador work for Cancellara at a race like RvV and PR? That would be totally stupid. No serious GC contender participates in these races. Chances of breaking something are extremely high there and he wouldn't even be good enough to help Cancellara. And Cancellara can't win LBL or Giro di Lombardia. I seriously don't get how you think Contador is going to hamper Cancellara's season...

Cancellara wants all monuments. I have said earlier in this thread that Contador and Cancellara will work as a partnership because Contador doesnt do MSR RVV and PR . However, Cancellara has won all of them and wants to target LBL and GL and perhaps even FW and AG. You say Cancellara isnt good enough. Perhaps. But then there are people propping him up for GTs. In my opinion he will never top 10 a gt. But the transformation to LBL, GL contender is a lot easier.

No offence, but i think this is another example of people looking at season 2010 and making too many generalizations from it (like saying ebh has lost it, Kreuziger has lost it, Sagan will win everything etc) In fact i think Cancellara has already been there. Sure this season his climbing has been poor. He peaked for the RVV PR.

But last year he won the Tour de Suisse and showed in Mendrisio he definately has what it takes to win hilly classics.
So it is not a stretch to suggest he has a good chance at Giro Lombardia Liege Bastogne Liege and maybe Flech Walone, Amstel Gold if he goes for it. This might conflict with Contador or it might (like this year with vino) give conti a chance to do cancellara a favour and give Cancellara added motivation to help Contador in gts.
 
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The Hitch said:
But last year he won the Tour de Suisse and showed in Mendrisio he definately has what it takes to win hilly classics.[/B] So it is not a stretch to suggest he has a good chance at Giro Lombardia Liege Bastogne Liege and maybe Flech Walone, Amstel Gold if he goes for it. .



he has a chance at LBL and Fleche. I think Lombardia is too long-a-climbs for him. Mendrisio did show that he can handle power climbs like LBL, Fleche etc. Lombardia i'd say not. Especially that time of year etc also.
 
boardhanger said:
he has a chance at LBL and Fleche. I think Lombardia is too long-a-climbs for him. Mendrisio did show that he can handle power climbs like LBL, Fleche etc. Lombardia i'd say not. Especially that time of year etc also.

Andrea Tafi: Roubaix '99 and Lombardy '96. In fact, he was going so fast up the hills in Lombardy, he had to hit the brakes on one of the turns. Quite comical in retrospect. But then again, Mapei had the best trainers, doctors, etc. :rolleyes:

edit: I personally think Cancellara could win any classic he rides, provided issues related to "The Clinic" don't cause any problems.
 
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Tactic to knock the 2 of them off? A course suited to the Flat TTer a little more, Menchov smashed them in the final TT. Contador is good in TT's but short with hills certainly favours him.

Without a little creativity in the course I'm not sure it's possible unless their teams go to sleep. They are happy for their teams to ride pace, even switching turns sometimes this year, to make sure it is those 2 at the end strength vs strength.

Love to see a course suited to decenders :)
 
karlboss said:
Tactic to knock the 2 of them off? A course suited to the Flat TTer a little more, Menchov smashed them in the final TT. Contador is good in TT's but short with hills certainly favours him.

Without a little creativity in the course I'm not sure it's possible unless their teams go to sleep. They are happy for their teams to ride pace, even switching turns sometimes this year, to make sure it is those 2 at the end strength vs strength.

Love to see a course suited to decenders :)

Agree with that karlboss,how about itt all downhill for 80 kms?I know im dreaming but dont wake me yet.......
 

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