João Almeida - The portuguese wolf

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This year he wasn't even supposed to ride the Giro as domestique for Evenepoel, but he was going to be DQS's leader for GC at the Vuelta. So if you think he won't get his own chances at DQS, you are clearly wrong. Especially if he keeps improving uphill and against the clock.
 
He feels like a Kruijswijk or Dumoulin kind of climber - he paces himself rather than trying to stick with the group until he cracks. I like riders like that, even when they're dropped they still have a chance.

I still think this year he'll struggle with the steeper climbs and I'll be very surprised if he's still in contention week 3. But definitely has a bright future ahead.
it’s a riding style that shows a lot of maturity and strength of character to understand that it will be better overall not to go deep in the red to cling on and that others will push too deep and ultimately drop back while his steady tempo overhauls them.
 
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He doesn't seem like a spectacular rider at the moment and has looked troubled on the few mountain stage so far, but I suppose his fighter spirit (and apparently decent time trial) is something that Nibali and co. will need to consider in the bigger scheme for this Giro.

Today's stage is actually an opportunity for Almeida to gain some time on riders like Nibali and Kruijswijk who lack the explosiveness of youth.
 
Pink jersey João Almeida: "I don't believe I can win this Giro"

João Almeida was allowed to spend the first day of rest in the Giro wearing the pink leader's jersey, which they had not seen coming at Deceuninck-Quick Step. Both Almeida and the team remain calm. "We'll see what is to come", it sounds.

"It was nice to wake up on the rest day with the pink jersey. I don't feel any pressure and I am very happy. That way I can enjoy this day a bit," says the 22-year-old Portuguese.

"I think I can hold on to the pink until the 15th stage, to Piancavallo. Then we'll see if I have the legs. Win the Giro? No, I don't believe in that. I've never raced for so long and there are so many guys with a lot of experience here. One bad day and everything is gone. "

"Riders like Fuglsang, Kelderman or Nibali make a very strong impression. There are many boys who are still eligible. I am now happy with this pink jersey and I see what the next few weeks will bring."

Sports director Klaas Lodewyck also keeps his feet on the ground. "It would be foolish to say that we are going for the overall victory. We will see what is to come and we make the best of it. We certainly will not put pressure on João. Everyone is sober enough for that", he said.

"Every day in pink is a nice bonus and we will defend that jersey as long as it is feasible. The whole team is doing an excellent job here. For so many days in pink, that's a great achievement. How long it can take is difficult. to be estimated in a 22-year-old boy. "

"Those young guys continue to amaze. He is already doing something that no one in the team expected. That is very nice to see. Hopefully he does not have a bad day, although that can always happen. João is a special guy. Winning the Giro. ? That would surprise me, but of course it is allowed, "laughs Lodewyck.

Sporza google translated
 
For me the ship pretty much sank when he got dropped by like 15 guys on Roccaraso. By no means will his Giro be failed if he doesn't top 10, he can still develop into a GT contender regardless, but it won't be for this Giro.
 
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Quietest thread ever for a 22 year old leading his first GT, having never done anything more than the baby Giro/Avenir.

He's looked fine in these lumpy stages and unbelievably DQS has the strongest team in the leaders' group. Expecting he'll take more time off Kelderman (can't believe I"m typing that, either) and the rest in the TT.

I have no idea if he can survive whatever mountain stages are held; not sure he does, either. But what we've seen in the past 2 years is that young guys can push through a lot of perceived limitations in GTs...
 
Impressive ride and suspect he will slightly extend his lead in the TT.

However from stage 15 onwards (subject to how many of those stages take place in their existing format) is a different ball game altogether.

I expect him to drift towards the middle/rear of the top 10 with the likes of Kelderman, Nibali, Fuglslang, Pozzovivo and maybe Bilbao fighting it out on the climbs.
 
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He's looking better & better, in a very unpredictable Giro. Even a Jungels-type 6th-8th overall @ 10 minutes would be impressive but I'm excited it might be more than that. Here's hoping we have a 3rd week.
 
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That's because everyone here is only interested in seeing Nibali winning. :oops:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKhvcq7mFHs
That's pretty much it. . . Also nobody trully believes he can hold on in the mountains.

I think we can expect a third week similar to Alaphilippe's third week at last years tour, but a spectacular explosion is also a possibility.

He's looking better & better, in a very unpredictable Giro. Even a Jungels-type 6th-8th overall @ 10 minutes would be impressive but I'm excited it might be more than that. Here's hoping we have a 3rd week.
Looking at the differences between the current top 10, 6th to 8th sounds about right and that would be amazing result!

Anything better than that is straight up mind boggling considering people just thought he was Remco's super domestique.
 
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Its been a stunning ride so far but unlike Alaphilippe in the 2019 Tour he has not been expending vastly more energy than the others making attacks from distance. He has the advantage that everything is a bonus so can ride without fear or crushing expectation. Should be further ahead after the TT then who knows as certainly his team has been much stronger than expected even in the context that the GC leaders team nearly always finds more powers than they knew they had before due to the motivation to go super deep.
 
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Its been a stunning ride so far but unlike Alaphilippe in the 2019 Tour he has not been expending vastly more energy than the others making attacks from distance. He has the advantage that everything is a bonus so can ride without fear or crushing expectation. Should be further ahead after the TT then who knows as certainly his team has been much stronger than expected even in the context that the GC leaders team nearly always finds more powers than they knew they had before due to the motivation to go super deep.
Importance of team strength here isn't that big and it's all gonna come down to the high mountain legs.
 
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Can't see that he has any chance to win here. Every GC guy has been together on the hilly & medium stages so far, so he is really impressive but not crazy that he's sticking with them.

He lost quite a bit of time on Etna (24s to Wilco, 12s to main GC group) and Roccaraso (18s) already and they are nothing compared to Piancavallo and the final week...
 
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Can't see that he has any chance to win here. Every GC guy has been together on the hilly & medium stages so far, so he is really impressive but not crazy that he's sticking with them.

He lost quite a bit of time on Etna (33s to Wilco, 12s to main GC group) and Roccaraso (18s) already and they are nothing compared to Piancavallo and the final week...
Like i said on the first page, he's a fighter. They will not easily "drop" him and be able to call it a day. If Algarve, Burgos, Tour de l'Ain etc have taught us anything, it is that he can sustain his pace and doesn't really crack. I think he will gradually lose time in the real mountain stages. A minute in one stage, 40 seconds in another etc. I agree it's unlikely he will win, but he could still finish top5, which would still be a huge result for him.
 

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