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How to make these long boring flat stages less boring?

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Mar 14, 2009
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  1. Smaller Teams
  2. More intermediate sprints & KOMs
  3. WT points for intermediate sprints and KOMs
  4. Bonus seconds for intermediate sprints and KOMs

Add those and you will see a fireworks on every stage
 
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SlickMongoose said:
the delgados said:
I haven't read the thread responses, so apologies if I'm repeating what someone else has said.
I've mentioned this in other threads, but do not televise flat stages for more than one hour.
Tell a story; produce a package that includes the day's breakaway and anything that happened in between (sorry, but crashes are part of it. as are puntures incurred by gt favourites).
Cut in live 10 km's from the finish after providing the narrative of the day (e.g. "Oh, so-and-so whose dog just died was so close to winning before being swallowed up by the on-rushing peloton. And here comes Cavandish...! And so on and so forth.)
GT's are supposed to be about races of attrition, but we don't need to watch endless km's of nothing.
Broadcasters need to fill the endless km's with a narrative contained within a short time frame.
I want to be at the edge of my seat when live coverage starts 10 km from the finish.

But then you're penalising those of us who like watching as much as possible.

Ha! Well count yourself lucky that I'm not responsible for producing a GT broadcast.
 
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Eyeballs Out said:
Zinoviev Letter said:
It's not just about the break having a better chance. Yesterday's stage offered that, but it also offered late attackers multiple viable places to get away and, further, even if the group came to the finish together the finale was balanced between Ardennes specialists and hilly sprinters. It provided both more entertainment and more opportunities for entertainment.
Can't really agree. Yesterday was no less predictable - they finished virtually in betting order, no attack ever looked viable, and that was in less than perfect weather (unlike today)

Yesterday's stage turned out in one particular way, but could reasonably have gone a few other ways. Today's stage could only ever be today's stage, bar freak weather conditions or a mass crash or something.

Stuyvens could have made it, and certainly had more chance of making it than any break on today's course. If Stuyvens had been caught earlier, there were two points where a viable new attack could have been made by an outsider, at the base of each of the last two climbs. And then when it came to a sprint, two different sets of specialists could have won and in fact came 1st and 5th in the case of the hilly sprinters and 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the case of the Ardennes specialists.

A stage on today's course is a big bunch sprint contested by sprinting specialists 99 times out of 100. Any break had nowhere to hide. There was nowhere to launch a counterattack. There was nobody but fastest half dozen big bunch sprinters who were ever going to contest the finale.
 
Nobody is forced to watch every televised minute. I only bothered to watch the last 20k today......after tuning in when they were averaging 33kph it was pretty clear there wouldn't be any action until the very end.
 
Need to incentivize aggressive riding somehow. That comes down to 3 things. 1) Cash rewards. 2) Time rewards. 3) Points rewards. Imagine if the combative award was some kind of team award at the end of the race (big $$$ attached to it). I'm not smart enough to figure out how you do this!! Just throwing it out there.
 
Essentially the problem is to go from one sponsoring town/city to another. Divide the stage into 2 small stages a & b about 100-120 k. this will allow for more sponsors, more excitement while sustaining the fatigue factor of the races and allow more number of winners. this is already done in some races.
 
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BigMac said:
That one time when the ''No one's forcing you to watch it'' troll-saying gains some validity.

Just tune in for the end. No need to tweak everything for our pleasure.

Pretty much. Hit the button. Imagine commentators doing a 6 hour flat stage ? Even they would be mentally exhausted. More castles, more helicopter shots, the general public don't mind, they don't understand the race anyway for the most part. The long solo breakaway is the worst except when it succeeds but it's very rare now almost extinct. They could improve the coverage by mixing things up. More interviews, talking to fans on the roadside, there is many things they could do but the real cycling fan sees the long flat stage as something to put up with not something to enjoy. Read a book and mute the sound.
 
I know the problem, if it is a problem, is not restricted to the Tour de France, but I think it may be exacerbated by the relatively new points system at the intermediate sprint. Points all the way down to 15th means that the sprinters' teams in the peloton are only willing to let a small group away, a small group is less likely to make the chase a matter of urgency. Fewer (or no) points for sprint classification at the mid-point, a meaningful category for intermediate sprints or for participation in breaks. If the UCI are not willing to allow leeway on the 4 special jersey rule, then replace the white jersey with something akin to the old red jersey (there can still be a podium presentation for the U25s).
 
Apr 3, 2016
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I didn't mind yesterday's stage. The finale was pretty exciting, with sprint trains trying to line up for a full commitment from the sprinters. If you want that then you probably have to accept the pedestrian pace of the peloton earlier. There will be plenty of stages that offer realistic breakaway later on, especially when legs get tired.

Variety is the spice of life, and it is three week race, not a one day classic.
 
Mar 14, 2016
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Re:

StryderHells said:
Were sprint stages in the past really that more exciting? Or are people less patient these days and expect non stop entertainment?
It's just that some people don't know there is the option of not watching a stage from the instant live TV starts! :p
 
Sep 17, 2015
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I like these kind of stages sometimes, if every stage was fireworks and mountains it would become dull. Also, as a Brit I am used to watching Cricket....... There is a sort of zen-state you enter when very little is happening.... sip wine, eat something, chat to your family, then look up, clap, murmur 'Oh well played' then go back to the wine and cucumber sandwiches.

I don't watch it for non-stop excitement.
 
Apr 3, 2016
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Re:

PatrickLeeds said:
I like these kind of stages sometimes, if every stage was fireworks and mountains it would become dull. Also, as a Brit I am used to watching Cricket....... There is a sort of zen-state you enter when very little is happening.... sip wine, eat something, chat to your family, then look up, clap, murmur 'Oh well played' then go back to the wine and cucumber sandwiches.

I don't watch it for non-stop excitement.

It's like watching snooker or tennis. Drifting off to sleep to the hypnotic sounds of the commentators musings only to be woken up for the last 5 minutes when things get very shout.

Am I showing my age?
 
Apr 3, 2016
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Re: Re:

PatrickLeeds said:
kwikki said:
It's like watching snooker or tennis.

Oh god, I am immune to most levels of dull, but Tennis?

Snooker I do get. It's televised tidying-up. Not my thing, but I get it.

I only watch tennis, snooker or sprint stages if I need an afternoon nap ;)
 
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PatrickLeeds said:
I like these kind of stages sometimes, if every stage was fireworks and mountains it would become dull. Also, as a Brit I am used to watching Cricket....... There is a sort of zen-state you enter when very little is happening.... sip wine, eat something, chat to your family, then look up, clap, murmur 'Oh well played' then go back to the wine and cucumber sandwiches.

I don't watch it for non-stop excitement.

In general I agree - I used to live with a guy who'd watch cricket the same way I often watch cycling - half in the background as you describe, especially on lazy weekend mornings.

The difference yesterday was that it wasn't just a boring race - it wasn't a race at all. I don't think there's an equivalent in cricket as the bowler still throws the ball and the batsman still tries to hit it, they don't just walk off the pitch and start practising.

I think normally some of the Bora guys might have tried to bridge across, but their leader is seriously injured so they had an interest in keeping things super slow. The problem was every team had either a GC guy (let's take the day off so we're fresh later) or a sprinter (let's wait til the sprint). So there was a complete dereliction of duty.
 

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