Teams & Riders Julian Alaphilippe Discussion Thread

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Let's wait until the Mur to call curtains on his spring, but today was a bit underwhelming. Not the 6th place as much as not featuring at all on the hills that should suit him to a tee.
The thing is he was kind of ok up until the top of Cauberg and then he completely exploded, to the point of not being able to follow wheels on flat terrain. Riders were passing him like it was me on the course, not the World Champion.

His sprint was actually surprisingly good all things considered.
 
The thing is he was kind of ok up until the top of Cauberg and then he completely exploded, to the point of not being able to follow wheels on flat terrain. Riders were passing him like it was me on the course, not the World Champion.

His sprint was actually surprisingly good all things considered.
Yeah seems no better than Vlaanderen tbh.

Also in 2019 he and Fuglsang were flying in AGR, then he could barely beat Fugl on the Mur and exploded on the RaF in Liege
 
I think he looked excellent until midway through Tirreno.
His performance on Ventoux was his best climbing performance in long time.
Great effort in Omloop.
Only beaten by a monster version of VDP in Strade.
Even at Tirreno he won the uphill sprint against VDP and Van Aert in Chiusdino.

But then something changed: subpar performance on Prati di Tivo + complete no show in the hilly rainy stage.
And lacking that extra bit in every classic he has raced after.

Honestly if you asked me in early March I would have told you he was ready for his best spring ever. Don't really know what happened.
Completely agree. He looked amazing in February and March, and then suddenly lost form. I wonder what happened? I don't really have high hopes for FW and LBL now, but hopefully he'll be at his best in the Tour and then again at Olympics, Worlds and perhaps the Italian autumn classics if they are om hos schedule?
 
I believe his form is still nowhere near good enough to win Liege. It's quite clear he is very tired right now, but FW is raced quite slowly, so he still has that punch to win here. If Ala couldn't be competitive in Amstel, he won't be in Liege.
Still he did the fastest Mur de Huy ascent ever. So the form can't be that bad, tbh. But still think he won't win LBL, since the whole peloton is flying currently.
 
Wonder if 2011 Gilbert could have done a 2:40 time. He did 2:44 but he was also celebrating a lot. Part of that wonder year must have been weakness of the field.
Was it that weak though? Rodriguez was the top murito rider of that period.

If anything I think we look too much at names and not at the times set by other riders in the same year, etc. When Valverde did 2:41, you had guys like Mollema and TJ Slagter dropping a 2:45, so it could easily be all down to the pacing/circumstances/ first half of the climb where you don't really notice much about the climbing speed. @johnymax said they did the first ~600m about 8s slower than 2014 this year. The final few 100m were absolutely immense.
 
Now onto the Tour & let's see where this goes, i.e. the route itself seems to have been (no surprise here) designed with Alaphilippe's puncheur qualities in mind.

Just look at stage 1 & 2, i.e. both have an uphill sprint finish:





So I wouldn't be surprised to see Alaphilippe in yellow on day 1 or 2, followed by a time trial (stage 5) in which he could also surprise (like in 2019).

IMO he's the potential third man in the battle for yellow behind Pogacar & Roglic.
 
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