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João Almeida - Bota Lume

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Sorry, but you're not right here.

I've already explained it before. Remco cracking at some point of this Giro was something that actually must have happened. Or at least it was much more likely to happen than not.

So... being almost as certain as "we must pay taxes" that he would eventually crack should DQ put Remco, João and by the way, the entire team, in this kind of limbo? If it was certain, why bring him? If DQ chose to bring him despite that, why make him a co-leader?

It was a bad mistake by Lefevere, Remco should have been protected and João should have been respected.
The communication by DQ was ambiguous through out this entire Giro and so it was expected that a lot of conspiracy theories started to come up as they are atm
 
Yeah, Almeida did no wrong, he is in the clear now.

The best they could do is to let them both ride for themselves. Strange, that Almeida lost that much time on stage 4. I thought the weather was the main factor. As it turns out something else likely played a bigger role. Maybe Ineos kept too hard tempo on that stage and Almeida didn't like that all that much.
 
Of course it was long, Knox was behind and Serry paced the peloton for a good while. You're making things up by doing some estimates which you have no idea. DQS had Masnada and Serry in that group when Almeida got dropped. When you have teammates in front of you and you are a leader usually one of them tries to help you. One of them, not both. Instead Serry is put to ride a high pace to keep up with Ciccone while Masnada was unbothered and finished one minute behind Evenepoel.
Almeida get's dropped when the leaders are 4.8km from the finish. Exactly 140 seconds later, Serry gets caught when the leaders are 4.3k from the finish. At 3.6k Serry pulls off the front, exactly 3 minutes later. We don't know whether or not Knox had caught Almeida at that moment, but the next shot, Serry is no longer in the group (Masnada is in last place). Almeida could not have been alone for much more than 6-7 minutes. You may find that "long", but it was a fraction of the time Remco didn't get help in the Montalcino stage. And while you may argue that Remco shouldn't have got support to begin with, that they should have known that he would eventually break or not, the fact remains that João agreed to helping Remco in case this would happen before the Giro started, and he agreed to do so again after he lost time in stage 4. So it's a bit hypocritical to blame Serry, Knox or Masnada not to help Almeida immediately (Knox would have had to bridge first, Serry was up the road, so realistically the only one you could blame is Masnada, who simply tried to stay with Remco as long as possible), while you didn't seem to think Almeida did anything wrong by letting Evenepoel dangle at the back and get dropped, and wait miles and miles before starting to help him.

It's either one or the other.
 
These statements make it all even more ridiculous.

So why the *** do you have the dorsal 91, why did you not work for Almeida on stage 4, and finally why did you spend days being towed by Almeida.

A lot of people are forgetting why Almeida had to work for Remco. Remco is a phenom; he's the future of Belgian cycling, and until 4 days ago, he had actually exceeded everyone's sky high expectations. There was nothing, and I mean nothing, that he was unable to do on a bike. Was it reasonable to expect him to podium the Giro? Based on prior performances -- which is all we had to go on -- absolutely.

It clearly didn't pan out, but it's revisionist history to say that DQS was bats*** crazy to let him do the Giro as a leader. Why wouldn't you?

Almeida clearly didn't like that on the sterrato stage, and that's where I blame both him and DQS management for not having a clear plan of action in the case that Remco lost time. The third factor in this unholy trifecta is the failure of Masnada, Knox, Serry, and especially Remi Cavagna to perform. Cavagna, especially, should have been shepherding Remco the way Ganna does Bernal.

The more interesting question to me is Almeida's future. He could be either a Geraint Thomas or a Bob Jungels...
 
It clearly didn't pan out, but it's revisionist history to say that DQS was bats*** crazy to let him do the Giro as a leader. Why wouldn't you?

It's not revisionist to have realised that taking a young rider who'd never done a 3 week race, had never tackled multiple high mountains and was just back from a long injury to the giro as leader might have been a mistake.
 
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Reminds me of prime Dumoulin. He always rides within his limits.
Those 5 minutes he lost in Sestola were really odd.
He would probably have lost less time in Sestola if he paced himself instead of Serry and Knox pacing him.
Almeida (as all other riders...) is human and, on that particular stage and based on what was happening inside his own team, was mentally all over the place....
He obviously is not the best rider in world but one thing he clearly is is a fighter, he never quits, and the way he ended that stage (the face, the will...) clearly showed us he was totally drained mentally and clearly not caring how much time he would lose....
On a normal stage he would have stayed with Foss and lost maybe 1:30 minutes... on that particular day it was a mess....

Regarding Knox and Serry staying with him... well...., I guess you could also say that today both of them stayed with Remco and, as you can see, the help was invaluable....
He forgot to eat.
Shouldn't the guys in the car take care of it? I've head the commentators saying that one of their responsibilities is to remind their riders when to eat. Especially when you're one of the leaders and it's a hard stage. If the hunger knock is real then I can understand why Almeida was so pissed in that interview. Almeida probably blames those guys while DQS management are like "it's your own fault".
But if it was hunger knock then why DQS said "Almeida had a bad day" instead of actually saying what it was. Maybe because they knew people will blame them.
This cumulated with the fact that DQS didn't help him on Sestola and left him to rot when he was dropping it's probably a bitter lesson Almeida has to take because he leaves and also thanks to the Belgian bias. They could've limit his losses to 3 minutes or even 2 but DQS was more than happy to sacrifice him early. That choice now bites them back.
I don't think we will see any new GC rider at DQS any time soon, the peloton saw the leadership treatment Almeida got.

It occurred to me today after reading somewhere after the fact a day or two after the stage, where Almeida lost those minutes early, is that Almeida said he bonked that is forgot to eat early enough. I can't say for certain that is what happened but it is a good explanation for his early time loss on that stage. If that is the case often DS's will make sure to remind young riders, some try to even remind veteran riders, to feed. With the divided attention to both riders it could have been the DS's fault for not telling Almeida to feed. I don't think they would have deliberately done that to put Remco (Bambi somewhat unfair Nickname) as the sole leader but if they didn't do it deliberately (that is if they didn't remind him to feed) then it still was a blunder and unfair to Almeida. If they in their review of the Giro figure out that is what happened then they should apologize to Almeida if only in house.
 
A lot of people are forgetting why Almeida had to work for Remco. Remco is a phenom; he's the future of Belgian cycling, and until 4 days ago, he had actually exceeded everyone's sky high expectations. There was nothing, and I mean nothing, that he was unable to do on a bike. Was it reasonable to expect him to podium the Giro? Based on prior performances -- which is all we had to go on -- absolutely.

It clearly didn't pan out, but it's revisionist history to say that DQS was bats*** crazy to let him do the Giro as a leader. Why wouldn't you?

Almeida clearly didn't like that on the sterrato stage, and that's where I blame both him and DQS management for not having a clear plan of action in the case that Remco lost time. The third factor in this unholy trifecta is the failure of Masnada, Knox, Serry, and especially Remi Cavagna to perform. Cavagna, especially, should have been shepherding Remco the way Ganna does Bernal.

The more interesting question to me is Almeida's future. He could be either a Geraint Thomas or a Bob Jungels...

It reveals a huge lack of character in Deceuninck . They say that João would clearly be the leader before the Giro started and then it was just stabbing that they gave him.
 
It reveals a huge lack of character in Deceuninck . They say that João would clearly be the leader before the Giro started and then it was just stabbing that they gave him.
That's incorrect. As said many times by many people on here, it was a co-leadership, and the road would decide. Almeida struggled very early in the Giro and he immediately lost all chance on victory. So Almeida effectively decided the leadership.

And even if they knew at DQS that Remco would probably not hold on his GC spot, they had a good chance getting the Maglia Rosa. Even the Montalcino stage, after a rest day and with all the bike handling issues, could still be seen as a temporary bad day. So until that point, it made perfect sense to work for Remco.
The Zoncolan stage was (at least for me) the point where it was clear Remco wouldn't be in contention anymore, while at the same time, it was not very efficient to force Almeida to help in that stage, as with such a steep climb, you can't do much to help.
 
Many here seem to forget that Remco had a very good chance taking the pink jersey in the first week. ANY team would ride for a rider that has that chance, even if they know that later in the Giro, the chance of holding the jersey is small.
He had a chance, but eventually hasn't taken it and that makes a difference.

NONE of the teams would ride for a rider having a chance to wear leader's jersey, knowing that it's very likely he will crack at one point of the race, and what's most important, having at the same time another rider, who's incomparably more reliable for the overall GC result and sacrficing him just at the beginning of the race.

Why ISN didn't ride for de Marchi (who indeed wore the jersey, unlike Remco) by sacrificing Martin in the mountains? Because they knew that as soon as first big mountain comes he'll be dropped and they would end up with nothing. The possibility of Remco keeping the jersey until Milan wasn't imo higher (and DQS knew that - paraphrasing:"we knew I could drop hard in 2nd part of the race, and it's not a surprise for us") than De Marchi keeping it.
The only difference with Remco is that he survived longer (which makes no difference in the end), while also not wearing the jersey even for one day.

So the jersey argument is imo totally invalid.
 
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Blaming the team for not remind him to eat is just stupid. He knows he has to eat, every cyclist knows this and it should be second nature to them. This already happend in Tirreno this year. On the stage MVdP won, he lost time for the same reason, with the rain he ended up not eating. Yesterday he was on top of his nutrition and he did great.

Some of you are trying to put to much blame on DQS, IMO.
It's true that they mismanaged the team and, in hindsight, some decisions were wrong. But we need to look at this situation without bias.
I'm portuguese to, I also get excited by seeing him fight for a GT and I also got pissed (screaming at the TV for him not to wait :sweatsmile:) when I saw him wait for Remco on the sterrato, but at the time it was the right decision, considering the direction the team was going and the fact that they believed Remco's chances. We can all discuss if Remco did have that capacity (I never thought he did), but that is another matter. Both the team and João did wrong in different occasions and the situation just escalated to quickly into this soap opera.

The portuguese hate towards DQS is just making things worse, specially because most of the "fans" know nothing about cycling. People comparing DQS to Ineos/Jumbo, complaining about the lack of support... c'mon... He's not even close to winning a GT, no team would treat him like he was Roglic or Pogacar. (I'm already waiting for some Bora hate next season XD).

I'm also sorry that Remco has to deal with all of this. I feel like his missing some guidance and has too much pressure. He and João have been on the same team for several years now, it would be sad to see this situation destroy their relationship. They can still help each other during the rest of the season.

João is still very young and I hope he learned something from all of this. He'll end up on the bottom of the top 10, but I think he showed yesterday great improvement's from last year. I'm excited to see the rest of the week, specially tomorrow and the ITT.
 
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It reveals a huge lack of character in Deceuninck . They say that João would clearly be the leader before the Giro started and then it was just stabbing that they gave him.
No. It was a combination of a few things, as I wrote. To me there's no way anyone, including Almeida, couldn't have expected Remco to get equal or better support. I don't see a conspiracy to make Almeida look bad, just a number of difficult decisions that turned out to be wrong.
 
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DQS said they knew Remco could crack, not that he would crack.

In a video on Masnada's Instagram page you can see Remco talking a bit, and he's saying that Almeida will be captain for the Giro. So at least that hasn't changed officially.

View: https://www.instagram.com/p/CN-UcacthR8/

6th May (two days before Giro start), Remco Evenepoel:
"It’s my first race after the crash, so I don’t know yet how my body will react. [...] The goal here is just to feel well in the bunch again and get that racing feeling again and having a lot of fun together with the guys. [...] I think you can’t prepare for a race 100% without racing"

Almeida (24th April, just for the contrast):
"I am quite calm and not that nervous. I feel like I have had some good results so far this year and I have trained and prepared properly, so I have done everything that I can do so far to be ready and I am confident about my form – I just need to rest and be fresh now and I will be ready."


If you repeat over and over, before and during the race that you're not prepared for the race, that you're not surpsrised at all that you dropped, that you're just here to get the racing feeling back and have fun with guys, it's incredibly not fair to give the leadership to such a rider and make the other, more reliable, well preapred leader to work for him.

DQS just went so much too excited after Remco's good 1st week, loosing their heads and putting everything on a guy who was just supposed to have fun.
 
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As usual you get triggered and salty. You were the first guy happy Almeida was gone and that "he is done", purely comical saying in this thread "you are a fan". Also obviously it's mostly Almeida's fault for it, he should be responsible of his own body. But he is still not experienced enough. I'm just saying what some guys said, I don't know if teams actually tell their riders when to eat. But it wouldn't surprise me if they do it with their leaders because they might get too focused and forget to eat. If the team did nothing wrong tho, why not saying from the beginning that it was hunger knock?
Sorry, i read right past this BS post. I was not happy, because i do in fact like Almeida. And as i already stated in other topics over the past weeks, it was even in Evenepoel's best interest to have Almeida in the top 10 of GC, because then they could make tactical plays to put their rivals under pressure.

But like so many here, like our Portuguese friend who joined the forum last week, who only "coincidentally" started watching the Giro (cycling?) last year when Almeida was doing well but ironically starts calling other people fanboys, maybe you should read my posts about Almeida from last year, in this topic, and i'm sure i made some comments in the topics of Algarve and Burgos 2020 as well. The fact that i said he was at fault not to wait and immediately help in stage 11, was not only completely justified since he ignored team orders and team agreements which were decided before the Giro and before the stage, but it also does not mean i can not be a fan because i am critical of him for doing something wrong. I've been critical of van Aert and Evenepoel plenty of times, yet they are my favorite riders. If you can not be critical of a rider you're a fan of, then you're a fanboy. Being a fan doesn't mean you can not be critical. But that appears to be a concept few people understand in this topic.
It occurred to me today after reading somewhere after the fact a day or two after the stage, where Almeida lost those minutes early, is that Almeida said he bonked that is forgot to eat early enough. I can't say for certain that is what happened but it is a good explanation for his early time loss on that stage. If that is the case often DS's will make sure to remind young riders, some try to even remind veteran riders, to feed. With the divided attention to both riders it could have been the DS's fault for not telling Almeida to feed. I don't think they would have deliberately done that to put Remco (Bambi somewhat unfair Nickname) as the sole leader but if they didn't do it deliberately (that is if they didn't remind him to feed) then it still was a blunder and unfair to Almeida. If they in their review of the Giro figure out that is what happened then they should apologize to Almeida if only in house.

The team communicates over an open channel. If they told Remco how to eat, then everybody in the team heard it. What you are suggesting is that either they didn't remind anybody to eat, yet somehow the most inexperienced rider of them all, did not have this hungerknock, or they found a way to only tell Remco (deliberately changing the channel, if this is even technically possible with the radio) so Almeida would not hear it. The latter pushing this a bit too much into conspiracy theory/tin foil hat territory. If this was the team's plan, then why the hell wouldn't they just have left Almeida at home and bring a guy like Vansevenant to help Evenepoel instead?

Also, Almeida wasn't in the break, he wasn't riding solo. He was riding in a large group/peloton. How can you "forget to eat" when you are seeing ALL the riders around you eat? But somehow the team is to blame that he didn't eat, yet Remco didn't forget.

And if you think it's an unfair nickname, why would you even bring it up and use it?
 
Super funny. A week ago there almost seemed to be a General consensus about how good Evenepoel was. It would either become a duel of the titans between Evenepoel and Bernal, or Evenepoel would crush the entire field including Bernal.

There were just a few people that had some critics Because REV never proved himself in multi-mountain stages and Three week races.

Now we are about 7 stages further and all of a sudden I spot so many captains Hindsight that all claim that REV was so likeky to crack that it is ridiculous his team even rode for him. They should instead have gone entirely for the alternative Almeida, who already collapsed entirely in the first test.

Pointing at misstakes is so easy in sport and especially cycling after it happened. But if you look at the decisions that Quickstep made based on the facts until the decision was made they always went for the most reasonable option at that point. Even if it did not turn out well afterwards.
 
Blaming the team for not remind him to eat is just stupid. He knows he has to eat, every cyclist knows this and it should be second nature to them. This already happend in Tirreno this year. On the stage MVdP won, he lost time for the same reason, with the rain he ended up not eating. Yesterday he was on top of his nutrition and he did great.

Some of you are trying to put to much blame on DQS, IMO.
It's true that they mismanaged the team and, in hindsight, some decisions were wrong. But we need to look at this situation without bias.
I'm portuguese to, I also get excited by seeing him fight for a GT and I also got pissed (screaming at the TV for him not to wait :sweatsmile:) when I saw him wait for Remco on the sterrato, but at the time it was the right decision, considering the direction the team was going and the fact that they believed Remco's chances. We can all discuss if Remco did have that capacity (I never thought he did), but that is another matter. Both the team and João did wrong in different occasions and the situation just escalated to quickly into this soap opera.

The portuguese hate towards DQS is just making things worse, specially because most of the "fans" know nothing about cycling. People comparing DQS to Ineos/Jumbo, complaining about the lack of support... c'mon... He's not even close to winning a GT, no team would treat him like he was Roglic or Pogacar. (I'm already waiting for some Bora hate next season XD).

I'm also sorry that Remco has to deal with all of this. I feel like his missing some guidance and has to much pressure. He and João have been on the same team for several years now, it would be sad to see this situation destroy their relationship. They can still help each other during the rest of the season.

João is still very young and I hope he learned something from all of this. He'll end up on the bottom of the top 10, but I think he showed yesterday great improvement's from last year. I'm excited to see the rest of the week, specially tomorrow and the ITT.

Very much with you on your insights ...

Prety stupid to blame on DQ about the "forgot to eat thing", he is a big boy and a professional and it should be 2nd nature to all riders without having to be warned by their racing directors

DQ bad decisions where not made on stage 11, there they were absolutely spot on, as far as racing strategy goes and IMO the only bad call was made at stage 14 (Zoncolan) where it didn't made any sense to bring back João in such a steep climb, at those kind of climbs it's basicaly every man for himself. As far as DQ goes, I criticize the changes there were made before the start of the Giro concerning João´s role as a leader, he was going to be leader, then maybe he could be co-leader and finally, yes we'll have 2 leaders. They were looking for trouble and as we saw it they found it.

Before the start of the Giro and after looking at the riders that DQ chose to bring IMO and on paper it was at the same level as Bahrain and Ineos to the purpose of working for their leaders especially at mountain stages

The apparent steady development of João since last year it's very similar to the pace he puts on those high mountains, small but strong steps towards the top. It seems by now that he will turn into a very strong contender for GC at GT for years to come, don't know if he will ever win one but he'll be there for contention for sure.
 
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Now we are about 7 stages further and all of a sudden I spot so many captains Hindsight that all claim that REV was so likeky to crack that it is ridiculous his team even rode for him.
It's Quickstep themselves claiming before the Giro that Remco's likely to crack. I'm just showing my agreement about this claims by also giving my own arguments why they were valid.

They should instead have gone entirely for the alternative Almeida, who already collapsed entirely in the first test.

Loosing 4min in the first week of GT is not a collapse and is still keeping you in better position for overall result, than a rider whose preparation consisted of 2 months of training, 0 races, and never been tested as a GC rider before.
 
The most natural option would have been to go stage hunting, as QS almost always used to do, let Evenepoel ride and test himself on a few stages, but not get supported as a leader, let Almeida go for certain stages, let Cavagna go for stages, let Honoré go for stages, let Knox go for stages. Maybe change the outlook of the team as well, bring someone like Cattaneo or Cerny instead of either Keisse or Serry, if you don't need "protectors" so much as guys capable of going for stages themselves. I'm not even talking about a sprinter because none of the options was imposing, but that would have been a possibility, too.
The whole "we are going all in for GC this time" was a special move which wasn't necessary and they must have believed in it to have a very good chance of succeeding, otherwise they wouldn't have done this.
 
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The whole "we are going all in for GC this time" was a special move which wasn't necessary and they must have believed in it to have a very good chance of succeeding, otherwise they wouldn't have done this.

Did they really say before the Giro that they're "all in for GC" regarding Remco? I don't think so.
Just look at my last post and what Remco said just before the start

The "all in for Remco's GC" approach came up just after the stage 4 iirc.
 
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It's Quickstep themselves claiming before the Giro that Remco's likely to crack. I'm just showing my agreement about this claims by also giving my own arguments why they were valid.



Loosing 4min in the first week of GT is not a collapse and is still keeping you in better position for overall result, than a rider whose preparation consisted of 2 months of training, 0 races, and never been tested as a GC rider before.

Losing 4 minutes that early on in a GT is a collapse and it brings you in a situation where it is almost impossible to get to a podium.

It was always very likely that Remco would crack, so that is what Quickstep is now mentioning. But there was always a small chance with Remco that he would not, because hè is quite the special kid. And within that scenario it was possible that Remco would be able to go for at least the podium. I think until after stage 11 it was logical that Quickstep went for that small chance instead of trying to go for at Max a top-5 by Almeida.
 
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