Jay Vine discussion thread




I don't think this newbie had a thread yet, but it's high time he had.






Great performances in this year's Vuelta for a first year pro, so definitely the one to look out for in the future. Came into it as the winner of Zwift academy, proving that playing games is good for you.
And he's extended with Alpecin Fenix until 2023.
 
Great story.

Apparently he and his wife sold all the assets they had back in Australia to come to Europe when he got the 1-year contract with AFC. Now they have 2 more years guaranteed here.

He was working for the Aussie government in data analysis on the pharmaceutical sector and when his contract ended at the end of 2019 he decided to have one last shot at going to the World Tour... before the pandemic started.

 
The concept of being able to scout anyone, anywhere by examining reliable, empirical data they generate at home has the ability to revolutionise the sport. There will be thousands of Jay Vines out there, but at present only a miniscule proportion will be using Zwift or similar.

It's also an amazing advertising tool for the company and I imagine smaller GT teams that can't afford to pay top dollar for top riders will be looking closely at opportunities to do something similar to identify talent that might then be worth a closer look. Alternatively might we see a top team pay for exclusivity with Zwift (hopefully not)?

As poor Jay perhaps showed yesterday though, indoor workouts do little to enhance your bike handling skills. But bike handling isn't essential for success in road racing these days when tour organisers are denounced if they dare have a descent to finish a stage in inclement weather.

Overall, very keen to see Vine do well as, on the face of it, this appears to be a very wholesome route into the sport rather than being managed from a young age by teams led by shady characters.
 
Reactions: Wvv
Here's some of his story told by his wife Bre:

I had thought about making a thread for him, but right now he hasn't showed that much compared to other Aussies like O'Connor, who has a thread, and Storer and Haig who don't. Bu he's definitely an interesting character, and his ride yesterday was phenominal, even if he, as I suspect, got some help to get back to the break.

He still has to get used to riding in a bunch on this level, and he has already crashed a few times in this race, just like he did it in the Vuelta a Andalucía where he ended up getting an alergic reaction at the hospital afterwards.

Vine is the first good male rider the Zwift Academy has produced, but their engagement with Canyon-SRAM has been working well enough.
 
Reactions: Lequack
The concept of being able to scout anyone, anywhere by examining reliable, empirical data they generate at home has the ability to revolutionise the sport. There will be thousands of Jay Vines out there, but at present only a miniscule proportion will be using Zwift or similar.

It's also an amazing advertising tool for the company and I imagine smaller GT teams that can't afford to pay top dollar for top riders will be looking closely at opportunities to do something similar to identify talent that might then be worth a closer look. Alternatively might we see a top team pay for exclusivity with Zwift (hopefully not)?

As poor Jay perhaps showed yesterday though, indoor workouts do little to enhance your bike handling skills. But bike handling isn't essential for success in road racing these days when tour organisers are denounced if they dare have a descent to finish a stage in inclement weather.

Overall, very keen to see Vine do well as, on the face of it, this appears to be a very wholesome route into the sport rather than being managed from a young age by teams led by shady characters.
Yes, but if you’re Zwifting by yourself off the radar of the UCI…
 
Reactions: glassmoon
Are we reading too much into one crash? We’ve seen dozens of pros have bad crashes for little to no reason all through this and other seasons, heck, we’ve seen team cars plow into other riders at times. He’s had 29 race days this season, with no other incident that I’ve heard about; Roglic and Thomas each had more crashes at the Tour alone . Until we see him on the deck a few more times, I’m gonna put this one down as a one-off.
 
Are we reading too much into one crash? We’ve seen dozens of pros have bad crashes for little to no reason all through this and other seasons, heck, we’ve seen team cars plow into other riders at times. He’s had 29 race days this season, with no other incident that I’ve heard about; Roglic and Thomas each had more crashes at the Tour alone . Until we see him on the deck a few more times, I’m gonna put this one down as a one-off.
You sound like you have ridden with the pro peloton before?

My apologies, I have not.
 
Are we reading too much into one crash? We’ve seen dozens of pros have bad crashes for little to no reason all through this and other seasons, heck, we’ve seen team cars plow into other riders at times. He’s had 29 race days this season, with no other incident that I’ve heard about; Roglic and Thomas each had more crashes at the Tour alone . Until we see him on the deck a few more times, I’m gonna put this one down as a one-off.
He had a really nasty crash at Vuelta a Andalucia, which sent him to hospital for a couple of days (ok, I didn't remember that but he needed to stay on the hospital because of an allergic reaction, not directly because of the crash).

Also crashed, from memory, at the last stage of the Tour of Turkey.
 
Are we reading too much into one crash? We’ve seen dozens of pros have bad crashes for little to no reason all through this and other seasons, heck, we’ve seen team cars plow into other riders at times. He’s had 29 race days this season, with no other incident that I’ve heard about; Roglic and Thomas each had more crashes at the Tour alone . Until we see him on the deck a few more times, I’m gonna put this one down as a one-off.
As I mentioned above he crashed at least once earlier in the race without any repercussions. He also crashed inside the 3 km marker on the last stage in the Tour of Turkey, before he had his nasty crash in Andalucía, which kept him out of racing until Burgos (he might have been fully ready to race before that though). Since he was a MTB rider (not at the highest level though) I assume he isn't the worst bike handler around, and the incident yesterday was perhaps also influenced by the movement of the team car.

Maybe he won't become the next Sagan, but he will probably improve when he gets used to riding in a pro peloton. Luckily he didn't crash out of the Vuelta, so he'll get some nice experience out of the race. Maybe he'll even be able to ride for a stage win once more in the final week.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
I know people won't agree with my opinion, but here it is: I don't really like all these career changers, guys coming from different sports, and people without real road/ bike experience. Actually the only good thing seems to me if they come from mtb or cross. Then they still need to learn to ride in the peloton, but they usually got great bike handling. Most of the guys coming from other sports, or Zwift, or often even track cycling, who lack what others learn in young years, are bad at either bike handling or riding in the peloton or often both.

Everyone crashes. In the past year or two I think all of van Aert, van der Poel, Sagan, Alaphilippe, Nibali have crashed. Bernal crashed badly earlier. But the amount of times / the probability with which some crash is just different. Evenepoel, Woods, Roglic, Vine - they just have their problems. Thankfully they often do this when alone, for instance on a descent, so they don't take others down with them. But all in all it doesn't give me a good feeling.

I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
 
I like the kid. He has shown some serious resolve after that crash on stage 14... he just needs a bit of fine-tuning to the peloton and to all the cars/traffic going around him. Hopefully with time the fine-tuning will take.
Similar to the Nissan car racing experiment ( I think it was Nissan). Riders were vetted and competed for an actual endurance race seat for a PT level 12 hour race on virtual platform. No prior real-time racing experience was part of the competition for the driver awards. It didn't work well but, as often with newer prototype cars; the car was more prone to breakdown than the drivers.
I've encouraged many friends and coworkers to ride indoors for convenient exercise and they've enjoyed good results.
Most do not want to risk injury riding outdoors, particularly with car traffic. Jay Vine did crash himself but he also did get up and gain a great result. He will be very good if he stays on the bike, IMO.
 
Jun 3, 2021
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I know people won't agree with my opinion, but here it is: I don't really like all these career changers, guys coming from different sports, and people without real road/ bike experience. Actually the only good thing seems to me if they come from mtb or cross. Then they still need to learn to ride in the peloton, but they usually got great bike handling. Most of the guys coming from other sports, or Zwift, or often even track cycling, who lack what others learn in young years, are bad at either bike handling or riding in the peloton or often both.

Everyone crashes. In the past year or two I think all of van Aert, van der Poel, Sagan, Alaphilippe, Nibali have crashed. Bernal crashed badly earlier. But the amount of times / the probability with which some crash is just different. Evenepoel, Woods, Roglic, Vine - they just have their problems. Thankfully they often do this when alone, for instance on a descent, so they don't take others down with them. But all in all it doesn't give me a good feeling.

I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
This seems really elitist to me.

Not everyone can learn to ride with the 'skills' in the traditional (read: European) way.

Bunches/peloton contain a reduced amount riders in most places outside of Europe (there's an example above in one of the articles on Jay Vine; a NRS race in Australia may have 60 riders - one third of what you'd see in the Vuelta). Couple that with differing continental geographies (Asia is massive, N.America, S.America, AU/NZ, Africa - all geographically disparate and are less conducive to the development you've outlined above...) Cyclocross isn't as well-developed (yet) outside of Europe. Bike infrastructure also lacks (in most places) compared to the way it's ingrained through-out most of northern Europe.

In any case, Jay came from MTB... so I don't think it's his bike handling. Positioning in the bunch, and confidence with cars and stuff? Absolutely. That can be learned.
 
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This seems really elitist to me.

Not everyone can learn to ride with the 'skills' in the traditional (read: European) way.

Bunches/peloton contain a reduced amount riders in most places outside of Europe (there's an example above in one of the articles on Jay Vine; a NRS race in Australia may have 60 riders - one third of what you'd see in the Vuelta). Couple that with differing continental geographies (Asia is massive, N.America, S.America, AU/NZ, Africa - all geographically disparate and are less conducive to the development you've outlined above...) Cyclocross isn't as well-developed (yet) outside of Europe. Bike infrastructure also lacks (in most places) compared to the way it's ingrained through-out most of northern Europe.

In any case, Jay came from MTB... so I don't think it's his bike handling. Positioning in the bunch, and confidence with cars and stuff? Absolutely. That can be learned.
Maybe you are right, maybe that is a very European point of view. In Germany everyone learns to ride a bike before they are going to school, at latest at 5, but nowadays often when they are 3 or even 2 years old. It's then the standard means of transport for pupils and students, many have used bikes of around 50 Euro. On the other hand that doesn't mean you get into a cycling club by default, that's something entirely else. Road cycling as a sport is actually not very common here - well, it might change. Cross is totally rare. Not every European country is Belgium.
I am not sure how much Vine is from mtb; if he did that in his youth I am sorry, then I was totally wrong about him. I read the article as "he owned a mountainbike and then as a young adult he started to race".

"Elitist" - I don't think that's what I am or what I meant. Pretty much every other sport requires you to start very young when you want to do it on a super-high level. For many sports 10 is too late of a starting age. You can't start tennis or gymnastics or football when you are 18. It's unfair, yes, because it usually requires parents or a school or someone who offers you a possibility. The thing is that people think that road cycling is different in that regard, that you can just start anytime. And in a way you can. But it can make it all about watts, and that's what I don't like.
 
I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
It's never been about watts alone. And we've seen many born and bred road racers crash in all kinds of ways.

But I agree that bunch riding is a real skill. I raced VTT but when I rode in a double pace line for the first few times all my handling skills didn't mean much...it's not just the ability to bunny hop a curb but having a comfort level to ride for hours wheel to wheel. I still don't much care for group rides...

I see that QS have signed Jason Osborne, a rower, as a stagiare. Watch out!

(to be clear, I'm all for riders coming from different sports)
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
I know people won't agree with my opinion, but here it is: I don't really like all these career changers, guys coming from different sports, and people without real road/ bike experience. Actually the only good thing seems to me if they come from mtb or cross. Then they still need to learn to ride in the peloton, but they usually got great bike handling. Most of the guys coming from other sports, or Zwift, or often even track cycling, who lack what others learn in young years, are bad at either bike handling or riding in the peloton or often both.

Everyone crashes. In the past year or two I think all of van Aert, van der Poel, Sagan, Alaphilippe, Nibali have crashed. Bernal crashed badly earlier. But the amount of times / the probability with which some crash is just different. Evenepoel, Woods, Roglic, Vine - they just have their problems. Thankfully they often do this when alone, for instance on a descent, so they don't take others down with them. But all in all it doesn't give me a good feeling.

I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
Ok, time to put a few things straight.

Vine hasn't come entirely from nowhere, he's been racing the Australian NRS and Asian Continental racing for a few years now, it's not like some guy with a big engine but didn't know it bought a bike and won big a few months later. Podium of the Sun Tour shows you can handle at least a 2.1 race in Europe without any problems.

Had the contract for the Zwift Academy still been with the Qhubeka U23 team Vine would have arguably been making a step sideways, staying at the same level. I actually think he would have been ineligible previously, already being on a Continental Team. Also, riders such as Nathan Haas and Nathan Earle have gone direct from NRS to WT with no issues (ok, Porte is a lost cause).

Lastly, we've all seen riders crash going back to the team car at WT level, it happens 1 or 2 times a year.
 
I know people won't agree with my opinion, but here it is: I don't really like all these career changers, guys coming from different sports, and people without real road/ bike experience. Actually the only good thing seems to me if they come from mtb or cross. Then they still need to learn to ride in the peloton, but they usually got great bike handling. Most of the guys coming from other sports, or Zwift, or often even track cycling, who lack what others learn in young years, are bad at either bike handling or riding in the peloton or often both.

Everyone crashes. In the past year or two I think all of van Aert, van der Poel, Sagan, Alaphilippe, Nibali have crashed. Bernal crashed badly earlier. But the amount of times / the probability with which some crash is just different. Evenepoel, Woods, Roglic, Vine - they just have their problems. Thankfully they often do this when alone, for instance on a descent, so they don't take others down with them. But all in all it doesn't give me a good feeling.

I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
ok boomer
 
Mar 13, 2021
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I know people won't agree with my opinion, but here it is: I don't really like all these career changers, guys coming from different sports, and people without real road/ bike experience. Actually the only good thing seems to me if they come from mtb or cross. Then they still need to learn to ride in the peloton, but they usually got great bike handling. Most of the guys coming from other sports, or Zwift, or often even track cycling, who lack what others learn in young years, are bad at either bike handling or riding in the peloton or often both.

Everyone crashes. In the past year or two I think all of van Aert, van der Poel, Sagan, Alaphilippe, Nibali have crashed. Bernal crashed badly earlier. But the amount of times / the probability with which some crash is just different. Evenepoel, Woods, Roglic, Vine - they just have their problems. Thankfully they often do this when alone, for instance on a descent, so they don't take others down with them. But all in all it doesn't give me a good feeling.

I wish guys like Vine all the best as people, but I don't like the tendency that more and more people come from more or less outside the sport, without having learned the skills - even more so because I think they are only learnable to a certain degree once you have reached a certain age, even if you have the coordination talent, which guys like Roglic and Evenepoel certainly have. While you can win races without great bike handling, this sport is not about watts alone.
Wilco Kelderman was just calling me to say that he disagrees.
 

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