Immaturity will be Contador's downfall...

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Mar 11, 2009
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mr. tibbs said:
Absolutely. Two seconds. And here's how it breaks down:

Stage 1 ITT: Contador gains 22 seconds
Stage 3, Flat w/ a freak split: Armstrong gains 41 seconds
Stage 7, Mountain-top finish: Contador gains 21 seconds

Which of the above indicates a rider capable of winning the Tour? Cavendish also gained that 41 seconds on Contador in that stage--should he be considered Columbia's team captain for the GC?

So far, Contador has made up time where it matters; Armstrong has made up time basically by accident. Armstrong is very good at talking through the media, and that has helped his cause a great deal, but Contador actually lets his legs do the talking. In all instances where strength mattered, Contador has proven stronger.

Lances time gane was no accident, but was because of Contadors error... And Lance could have followed Contador if he attacked on stg 7, only he promised not to! Lance is the real leader in the peloton! Contador will never be as respected
 
Jul 7, 2009
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Publicus said:
I guess this is where all of the disagreement flows from. JB himself said there was no specific plan, but that they would cover the attacks when they came. If someone felt good and could put time into the other contenders, they should figure out amongst themselves (Contador/Armstrong). That's pretty much what happened. If you can't accept that, then let's just agree to disagree because that's a pretty significant point.
Attacking when everyone of your rivals was in the lead group is not a counter attack. Its an attack that was meant to put time into his teammates. Johan said there was a plan to cover attacks, not get yellow, and was telling guys to slow down on the climb. That's going against team plans and orders.
 
dadoorsron said:
Attacking when everyone of your rivals was in the lead group is not a counter attack. Its an attack that was meant to put time into his teammates. Johan said there was a plan to cover attacks, not get yellow, and was telling guys to slow down on the climb. That's going against team plans and orders.
Like I said, agree to disagree. You say potato, I say it's a radish. It happens! ;)
 
Mar 17, 2009
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I don't think either has done much to claim 'leadership'. AC has made one goof, getting caught out by a crosswind, and possibly a second attacking into a headwind and gaining little time for the effort expended. LA has been smart and cautious so far, with an added helping of head games, something he's particularly adept at. Trouble is, he's playing those games with a fellow team member.

From what I've seen so far, I'd hypothesize that Contador's past successes were due in no small part to a DS keeping him riding smart, much as LA tended to do silly things that cost him later, early in his career. Doesn't look like AC has the full benefit of that wisdom on this Tour, so he'd best find some inner discipline quickly if he wants to prevail.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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richwagmn said:
It was a young rider doing something brilliant. LA's been after the yellow jersey since the TTT.

Look at the pace of stage 7. That wasn't a let a guy 2 minutes on us pace. That was a lets get a yellow jersey for LA. JB apparently wasn't pleased with the pace.

AC blew the plan for LA. AC has help coming from Sanchez and others. He'll now start behind LA on the ITT and know his splits which gives a good advantage in the ITT.

It probably goes to Ventoux. JB said if LA and AC are the only two real contendors, they can go at each other. That's only fair. Isn't that what LA wants anyways? Hasn't he always said the strongest man should win? Or was that another line of BS from LA?

Remember, Contador won't be with this team come next year. He's after one thing. A TDF win. Astana, JB and LA be damned if need be. Shows some real balls if you ask me and some genuine leadership.

To be a great champion, you have to have the win at almost any cost attitude. I think we're seeing that from AC. It's ruffling LA's feathers but so what? You don't think AC will be a hero to many other tour riders if he takes down LA? He'll be a giant.
This is complete speculation on your part and goes against everything Johan the coach has said in the media. Unless you are talking a conspiracy then I think you need to take your tin foil hat off and relax.

Remember Lance has been looking for sponorships for a new team next year. He has made that Clear do to astana's money issues. Johan will leave because, Vino wants Astana back under his control. That was in statements made prior to the tour started. Contador will be on another team next year.

To be a great champion you must follow team orders. He didn't have the green light to go. he just went. This isn't Lance 2005 this is lance coming out of retirement. That is a big difference. You have to give the old man credit. He is seconds from yellow he has been out of racing for 4 years and he doesn't look very bad. Now that will lead me to to things. 1. Lance in his run was so ahead of everyone that only 2 or 3 riders could hang with the man. 2. Lance 4 years removed from his last tour win has come back to the field. Meaning his talent has made him look more like a regular elite tour rider. Basically what I am saying is. lance and his physical abilities have gotten lower. however, they have lowered to still be able to lead a tour. The riders haven't gotten better Lance has lowered to there level. thats food for thought.
 
Belokki said:
Lances time gane was no accident, but was because of Contadors error... And Lance could have followed Contador if he attacked on stg 7, only he promised not to! Lance is the real leader in the peloton! Contador will never be as respected
You are nothing, if not consistent, Belokki. Consistently cluless, that is.
Learnt nothing on BR and are learning even less here.

However, you are right in one respect.
Fanboys only respect one man and that is disrepectful to an entire peloton.

Another reason for hater's to hate the fan and not the man.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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Belokki said:
Lances time gane was no accident, but was because of Contadors error... And Lance could have followed Contador if he attacked on stg 7, only he promised not to! Lance is the real leader in the peloton! Contador will never be as respected
and what about the initial time trial?

and do you think its the right thing to do to take back a rider who has been retired for over three years and name him co-captain when you have a rider such as contador in the team? they should have had lance as second captain in case contador cracks. this strategy with lance and contador as co-captains is not good for the team.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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racerralph said:
Interesting point you bring up. Team sports mentality. I grew up with baseball, football, hockey and basketball. But as I got a little older, I began to Love ski racing, tennis and bicycle racing. Sports where you answer only to your own standards.
Your admitting to having a team sport head is something that many of Contador's critic's won't own up to. Because while this is a team oriented sport. Some of it's greatest stars have stood out either without great team support, or in the face of rivalries inside the same team. At it's core, it is a very individual sport, because when it comes down to the last 100 meters, or the top of the mountain, it's what's in the riders gut that separates the winners from the rest.
But, one thing I remember observing early on in Lance's era, was that once Lance wore the Maillot Jaune, Ullrich or Beloki, or Basso essentially became his teammates. How? through the sheer fact that if they couldn't get away from him, they would never make up the time they had already lost. So, in essence he never had to beat them in another stage, so long as he didn't let them gap him by too much, or at all.
And I think Contador might have learned this lesson from Lance also. Especially after Lance twitter-scolded him about staying cool under fire after his Paris-Nice Bonk/Loss. Now, AC only need keep his eyes on his own ambitious teammate, and continue seizing opportunities as they present themselves, in ITT's and Mountain top finishes, and he will be the TdF champion for 2009.:)
I know it takes individual efforts to win a grand tour race or any cycling event. The rider wins the stage or race not the team. However, Ullrich never came to the tour de france with a team that was 100 percent for him. He never was able to beat Lance because his team was always fighting among themselves. Kloden on only a few occasions paced ullrich up the mountains. it's a large contrast that Kloden is clued to the front of armstrong for this tour. Basso, on csc never had a team around him in the mountians. He was always alone or had that freak rider hanging on the back of the lead group. What other contender ever had a team surrond there team leader in the high mountians. In 2005 t-mobile and CSC started attacking with riders that had no GC chances so Basso, Ullrich could ride to the help. Then for the first time they actually had help in the mountians.

Team tactics are over looked I feel in the grand tours. Even though it takes a strong individual to win the race it takes a good team to get that individual the chance to win the race.
 
Belokki said:
Lances time gane was no accident, but was because of Contadors error... And Lance could have followed Contador if he attacked on stg 7, only he promised not to! Lance is the real leader in the peloton! Contador will never be as respected
I think Armstrong was very good on Friday. If Evans or Schleck had put in a sustained attack, I think Armstrong would have been one of the few who could have followed. But I think Contador is the strongest this year.

We could debate the tactical/moral merits of Armstrong's third stage vs. Contador's seventh, but the simple truth is Contador's gains this year have come about from strength, while Armstrong's have come about from sitting on the right wheels.

Let's forget those two stages altogether, though, and just consider the ITT. Contador beat him, as did Kloden and Leipheimer. This is not the Armstrong of 99-05, and this is not his team anymore. Contador is the strongest and Armstrong is only hurting the team by making Contador show his dominance.

Armstrong wanted the race leader to be decided on the road--b/c, on paper, it's clearly Contador--and the road has continually ruled in favor of the Spaniard.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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dadoorsron said:
Attacking when everyone of your rivals was in the lead group is not a counter attack. Its an attack that was meant to put time into his teammates. Johan said there was a plan to cover attacks, not get yellow, and was telling guys to slow down on the climb. That's going against team plans and orders.
the problem is that they arent team astana plans. they are team lance plans. so instead of focusing on alberto going against 'team orders' you should analyze the underlying problem.
 
dadoorsron said:
I know it takes individual efforts to win a grand tour race or any cycling event. The rider wins the stage or race not the team. However, Ullrich never came to the tour de france with a team that was 100 percent for him. He never was able to beat Lance because his team was always fighting among themselves. Kloden on only a few occasions paced ullrich up the mountains. it's a large contrast that Kloden is clued to the front of armstrong for this tour. Basso, on csc never had a team around him in the mountians. He was always alone or had that freak rider hanging on the back of the lead group. What other contender ever had a team surrond there team leader in the high mountians. In 2005 t-mobile and CSC started attacking with riders that had no GC chances so Basso, Ullrich could ride to the help. Then for the first time they actually had help in the mountians.

Team tactics are over looked I feel in the grand tours. Even though it takes a strong individual to win the race it takes a good team to get that individual the chance to win the race.
No one has sacrificed their considerable GC capabilities for a teammate more than Kloden. He was always riding for Ullrich when he could, and, when Ullrich got the boot, he rode for Vino--even after Vino's crash should have reversed their roles. Last year at the Giro he turned himself inside out with an upper-resporitory infeciton to help Contador in the mountains, and now he's doing the same in France.

Sorry to pounce on this, but Kloden has never had serious GC ambitions: he is the ULTIMATE teammate.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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TrapperJohn said:
I don't think either has done much to claim 'leadership'. AC has made one goof, getting caught out by a crosswind, and possibly a second attacking into a headwind and gaining little time for the effort expended. LA has been smart and cautious so far, with an added helping of head games, something he's particularly adept at. Trouble is, he's playing those games with a fellow team member.

From what I've seen so far, I'd hypothesize that Contador's past successes were due in no small part to a DS keeping him riding smart, much as LA tended to do silly things that cost him later, early in his career. Doesn't look like AC has the full benefit of that wisdom on this Tour, so he'd best find some inner discipline quickly if he wants to prevail.
i dont understand. what do you want contador to do? how is he supposed to show leadership? how many stages has given him the opportunity to do so? he did it on the initial time trial...and he did it on the only mountain finish so far. lol what do you want from the guy?

last time i checked the standings he was ahead of all of his rivals.
 

whiteboytrash

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Mar 17, 2009
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Futuroscope said:
i dont understand. what do you want contador to do? how is he supposed to show leadership? how many stages has given him the opportunity to do so? he did it on the initial time trial...and he did it on the only mountain finish so far. lol what do you want from the guy?

last time i checked the standings he was ahead of all of his rivals.
I disagree. I don't like attacking. I prefer to see one maybe two teams at most riding tempo on the front of the peloton for days on end.

It was a masterstroke by the organisers to create this route.

It was also a masterstroke of the Ag2R clothing designers to change their uniform to the a horrible shade of sh-t brown. Seeing them on the front of the peloton for days upon end has been my Tour highlight. I just hope Contador doesn't attack forcing the cameras to focus on him.
 

Eva Maria

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May 24, 2009
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Belokki said:
Lance is the real leader in the peloton!
Lance is the 4th best rider on his own team. The 4th guy is not the leader, he is the guy who goes and gets the bottles.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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So many threads on this not sure where to put it...so I have put this in a couple of places (apologies for repeating my self) but...in answer to the original question about Contador's immaturity

One way I can see Lance winning is for two things to happen...

1. Riding a good ITT and being up their with AC - this will need him to ride a better ITT than we have seen him ride since his return - not sure he has it in him but we'll see. And then...

2. On Ventoux the Astana boys set a high tempo thin out the field and then...it may well be that if it is still close betweem Lance and Contador on the GC - Contador gets impatient and goes (too?) early on the climb - he skips out to 30 seconds or so maybe even a minute but then sticks...and starts to run out of gas. The rest of the contenders (schleck, evans etc) peg him back and Lance like the good team mate he is - just sits in the wheels. When AC gets caught Lance attacks, takes yellow and makes history.

How likely is this... not sure but if it's close in the ITT then I think this is very likely to be the plan for Lance going in to Ventoux. And I see the war of words continuing to soften up Alberto for Ventoux.

But we have a week or so to wait - lots can happen between now and then.
 
May 10, 2009
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180mmCrank said:
So many threads on this not sure where to put it...so I have put this in a couple of places (apologies for repeating my self) but...in answer to the original question about Contador's immaturity

One way I can see Lance winning is for two things to happen...

1. Riding a good ITT and being up their with AC - this will need him to ride a better ITT than we have seen him ride since his return - not sure he has it in him but we'll see. And then...

2. On Ventoux the Astana boys set a high tempo thin out the field and then...it may well be that if it is still close betweem Lance and Contador on the GC - Contador gets impatient and goes (too?) early on the climb - he skips out to 30 seconds or so maybe even a minute but then sticks...and starts to run out of gas. The rest of the contenders (schleck, evans etc) peg him back and Lance like the good team mate he is - just sits in the wheels. When AC gets caught Lance attacks, takes yellow and makes history.

How likely is this... not sure but if it's close in the ITT then I think this is very likely to be the plan for Lance going in to Ventoux. And I see the war of words continuing to soften up Alberto for Ventoux.

But we have a week or so to wait - lots can happen between now and then.
Wondering this too, although I don't think Contador would make a silly mistake or bonk at Ventoux. However, he truly needs to get more time on the mountaintop finishes, in order to have a confortable margin before the ITT. Then, maybe, he could try a more conservative and wise ride at Ventoux.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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Futuroscope said:
the problem is that they arent team astana plans. they are team lance plans. so instead of focusing on alberto going against 'team orders' you should analyze the underlying problem.
Its team astana plans because thats what got contador the win in the Giro and Vuelta.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Contador needs to get Lance distanced to about 2-3 minutes in the mountains in order to have a chance of holding on in the flat TT.

Its nothing to do with "imaturity" Contador is very mature as are all the Tour riders. Lances total FTP (all out 1-hour average power) is higher than Contador's because he's bigger. Contador could loose time in the flat TT. He needs to attack his own teamate lance in the mountains and gain time.
 
May 10, 2009
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BigBoat said:
Contador needs to get Lance distanced to about 2-3 minutes in the mountains in order to have a chance of holding on in the flat TT.

Its nothing to do with "imaturity" Contador is very mature as are all the Tour riders. Lances total FTP (all out 1-hour average power) is higher than Contador's because he's bigger. Contador could loose time in the flat TT. He needs to attack his own teamate lance in the mountains and gain time.
Hi BigBoat,
Made a response about the ITT in other thread. Agree on your "security margin" for Contador, but even so, I do not believe Armstrong will take time on him in the ITT.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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Smera1 said:
Hi BigBoat,
Made a response about the ITT in other thread. Agree on your "security margin" for Contador, but even so, I do not believe Armstrong will take time on him in the ITT.
We just have not seen anything from Lance to suggest he is capable of riding an ITT anything like he might have done in the past. But doesn't mean it's not there...guess that's why it's called the race of truth!
 
A

Anonymous

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180mmCrank said:
We just have not seen anything from Lance to suggest he is capable of riding an ITT anything like he might have done in the past. But doesn't mean it's not there...guess that's why it's called the race of truth!
I am starting to think that is why he is acting so smug. He knows his numbers, and thinks he will take enough time to win in the ITT. (or beat Contador anyway. If he beats Sparticus, I quit.) Then he just has to follow wheels.
 
Jul 7, 2009
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mr. tibbs said:
Absolutely. Two seconds. And here's how it breaks down:

Stage 1 ITT: Contador gains 22 seconds
Stage 3, Flat w/ a freak split: Armstrong gains 41 seconds
Stage 7, Mountain-top finish: Contador gains 21 seconds

Which of the above indicates a rider capable of winning the Tour? Cavendish also gained that 41 seconds on Contador in that stage--should he be considered Columbia's team captain for the GC?

So far, Contador has made up time where it matters; Armstrong has made up time basically by accident. Armstrong is very good at talking through the media, and that has helped his cause a great deal, but Contador actually lets his legs do the talking. In all instances where strength mattered, Contador has proven stronger.
I forgot that Cavendish has won 7 TdFs. My bad.
 
May 10, 2009
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Thoughtforfood said:
I am starting to think that is why he is acting so smug. He knows his numbers, and thinks he will take enough time to win in the ITT. (or beat Contador anyway. If he beats Sparticus, I quit.) Then he just has to follow wheels.
Must agree Armstrong is playing his cards very well, as we saw his poker face in a couple of circumstances during this Tour. My doubt is if he will take the Maillot Jaune before the ITT. If so, he will have a big morale and motivation, and that will become a factor when they arrive in Ventoux.
 
BigBoat said:
Contador needs to get Lance distanced to about 2-3 minutes in the mountains in order to have a chance of holding on in the flat TT.

Its nothing to do with "imaturity" Contador is very mature as are all the Tour riders. Lances total FTP (all out 1-hour average power) is higher than Contador's because he's bigger. Contador could loose time in the flat TT. He needs to attack his own teamate lance in the mountains and gain time.
That's going to require some assistance from Andy Schleck, Evans and Sastre. They also need to get that kind of time on Armstrong and Levi. I think Stage 13, 15 and each of the stages after the final rest day will be critical.

If I'm Contador, I try to grab the yellow jersey on 13 (Lance is going for on 15 (mark my words)). No race radios on 13, so whatever plan they leave the bus with is it (and I expect both he and Lance to attempt to deviate). If he succeeds, he'll be the sole protected rider on the way up to Verbier which would put a serious dent in Mr. Armstrong's plans.
 

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