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June-July cloud of boredom

Proposition: the Dauphine-Suisse-Tour thing has become a black hole. Virtually unwatchable.

After the early season build up, the greatness of the classics and the always entertaining Giro, the season drops off a cliff right when it should be reaching peak interest.

The Tour has become bad for the sport: there's too much at stake in it, too much investment in results; it is worth too much, it makes too much money. It suffocates.

What to do about this??
 
it's all down like/dislike for the most dominant grand tour team rather than quality of racing itself. i'm 100% assured had both froome and thomas crashed out and abandoned, july would've quickly turned into a real bike racing festival regardless of what all the rest guys can deliver. -)
 
I'll agree with dacooley up to a certain point (though he's rather talking about team preference). Had Ineos started the Giro with Bernal and Thomas or Froome as leaders, meaning Sivakov, Hart & Sosa being part of the Ineos train, the Giro might have been just as boring as well. When no team has a strangle hold on the race, it's always more entertaining and unpredictable. There were plenty of bad stages in the Giro even without one team dominating. Should Bernal, Thomas and Froom crash out of the Tour, the other contenders would smell blood and go into attack mode.
 
I actually quite enjoy these prep races. As all races, it heavily depends on the route and this year Dauphine's is quite bad. The Tour? Well it is what it is, Im still watching as much as I can for the chance of something really good happening, but it rarely happens unfortunately.
 
fans have a tendency of growing tired from sameness. sky won 6 tour out of previous 7, it's a bit too much. on the other hand, who draw most attention in the last year's tour? for sure thomas and froome. thomas quite unexpectedly turned out the strongest rider who pretty much provided the whole attacking activity in the mountains, meanwhile lots of people had a hope to see something finestre-like from froome. the way bardet, quintana, landa were riding was underwhelming.
 
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Logic-is-your-friend said:
I'll agree with dacooley up to a certain point (though he's rather talking about team preference). Had Ineos started the Giro with Bernal and Thomas or Froome as leaders, meaning Sivakov, Hart & Sosa being part of the Ineos train, the Giro might have been just as boring as well. When no team has a strangle hold on the race, it's always more entertaining and unpredictable. There were plenty of bad stages in the Giro even without one team dominating. Should Bernal, Thomas and Froom crash out of the Tour, the other contenders would smell blood and go into attack mode.
I was suggesting more about getting tired from the same characters on top. Predictability of the outcome is what drives the audience the most in a negative way. although, we might have easily got a lame tour even without sky participating.
 
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Logic-is-your-friend said:
I'll agree with dacooley up to a certain point (though he's rather talking about team preference). Had Ineos started the Giro with Bernal and Thomas or Froome as leaders, meaning Sivakov, Hart & Sosa being part of the Ineos train, the Giro might have been just as boring as well. When no team has a strangle hold on the race, it's always more entertaining and unpredictable. There were plenty of bad stages in the Giro even without one team dominating. Should Bernal, Thomas and Froom crash out of the Tour, the other contenders would smell blood and go into attack mode.
Giro is simply another beast. Sky started with Wiggins, Thomas, Froome as a leaders, and with strong teams too, but it was never a borefest.
Of course that teams, although quite strong, were never as strong as Tour teams though... So I would really like to see a Giro with a full strength Sky squad, but I think it would nevertheless be different than the Tour due to unpredictability and hardness of the Giro.
 
I agree with Hegelian that the post-Giro weeks are a bit bland, I can't get excited about Dauphine or Suisse either (but then I'm generally not a fan of one-week stage races).

The Tour's still the Tour though, and I'm looking forward to it despite everything.
 
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Blanco said:
Logic-is-your-friend said:
I'll agree with dacooley up to a certain point (though he's rather talking about team preference). Had Ineos started the Giro with Bernal and Thomas or Froome as leaders, meaning Sivakov, Hart & Sosa being part of the Ineos train, the Giro might have been just as boring as well. When no team has a strangle hold on the race, it's always more entertaining and unpredictable. There were plenty of bad stages in the Giro even without one team dominating. Should Bernal, Thomas and Froom crash out of the Tour, the other contenders would smell blood and go into attack mode.
Giro is simply another beast. Sky started with Wiggins, Thomas, Froome as a leaders, and with strong teams too, but it was never a borefest.
Of course that teams, although quite strong, were never as strong as Tour teams though... So I would really like to see a Giro with a full strength Sky squad, but I think it would nevertheless be different than the Tour due to unpredictability and hardness of the Giro.
I don't think it's plain simple with froome winning the giro after having made heaps of mistakes in first 2 weeks.
 
Most people exaggerate as to how much they dislike the Tour year after year, otherwise, why continually watch it?

It's still a great race, and will probably be more interesting then this years Giro was. Froome and Thomas are quite old, and if Bernal is stronger than both of them then that's an interesting race already. Plus we have Dumoulin as a strong contender, and Quintana has shown good form this season (plus his team will carry some confidence from the Giro). Mountains in week one means that we won't wait thirteen days to find out who is a contender or a pretender either. As usual the parcours could do with some longer mountain stages and additional ITT kms, but we could be in for a fascinating race.
 
Apr 3, 2016
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We’ve seen the rest, now it’s time for the best! If you don’t like, watch some tennis or America’s cup or whatever:) Or try out in-line marathon racing, almost cycling like race dynamics and tactics, but without team Ineos ;)
 
I agree with the OP that the TdF carries too much weight, but I disagree with everything else. I enjoy pretty much all races, obviously some more than others, but its all good. I always hope that guys/teams who don't have a lot of chances at the TdF and/or those who aren't even going to the TDF, try to explode the one week races. I also always hope that the formula gets broken as much as possible.

I'm not sure what spurred the negativity trend in the last few years around here, but the "I'll give it a 2 because it wasn't as good as 1921, 43, 56, 71, 90, 2003, 09, 11, but it was better than 45 and 89." WTH?! A) your memory isn't that good, B) get out for a dirt ride to get your mind right, C) get some tequila to get your mind right. :lol:

EDIT: I think that some of the 'problem' is that we, especially USAers, get so much more coverage than we used to. When it was just highlights, everything was exciting. Was it better when riders were spread out, in ones and twos, over 30, 40, 60 minutes? ...
 
I don't mind the prep races. Depending on the route they can be very entertaining and enjoyable. We can at times get surprise winners as well. Did any one ever expect Talanksy to win the Dauphine several years ago? I wish we got more than basically a race recap/final stage of Suisse on TV over here. The Tour on the other hand is another story. That is one time I'm glad I'm in the US. By the time I'm home from work I already know who won the stage and if there is actually a reason to bother watching or when to watch.
 
Re:

dacooley said:
it's all down like/dislike for the most dominant grand tour team rather than quality of racing itself. i'm 100% assured had both froome and thomas crashed out and abandoned, july would've quickly turned into a real bike racing festival regardless of what all the rest guys can deliver. -)
Giro 2012 had no Sky for GC win battle, and it was regarded as an awful race by many cycling fans, because it was awful. Giro 2018 was won by Froome, and many people who doesn't even like Froome said it was a great Giro, because it was.
 
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Forever The Best said:
dacooley said:
it's all down like/dislike for the most dominant grand tour team rather than quality of racing itself. i'm 100% assured had both froome and thomas crashed out and abandoned, july would've quickly turned into a real bike racing festival regardless of what all the rest guys can deliver. -)
Giro 2012 had no Sky for GC win battle, and it was regarded as an awful race by many cycling fans, because it was awful. Giro 2018 was won by Froome, and many people who doesn't even like Froome said it was a great Giro, because it was.
Yep, agree, it has nothing to do with Sky winning per se. They could be winning a great race and we would call it was it was - a great race. Unfortunately, that just hasnt been the case in the Tour, although the latest Tour surely were much better than the complete and utter trash Tours of 2016 and 2017. I thought the 2013 and 2015 Tours were pretty good in terms of action which all were won by Froomey
 
Re: Re:

dacooley said:
Blanco said:
Logic-is-your-friend said:
I'll agree with dacooley up to a certain point (though he's rather talking about team preference). Had Ineos started the Giro with Bernal and Thomas or Froome as leaders, meaning Sivakov, Hart & Sosa being part of the Ineos train, the Giro might have been just as boring as well. When no team has a strangle hold on the race, it's always more entertaining and unpredictable. There were plenty of bad stages in the Giro even without one team dominating. Should Bernal, Thomas and Froom crash out of the Tour, the other contenders would smell blood and go into attack mode.
Giro is simply another beast. Sky started with Wiggins, Thomas, Froome as a leaders, and with strong teams too, but it was never a borefest.
Of course that teams, although quite strong, were never as strong as Tour teams though... So I would really like to see a Giro with a full strength Sky squad, but I think it would nevertheless be different than the Tour due to unpredictability and hardness of the Giro.
I don't think it's plain simple with froome winning the giro after having made heaps of mistakes in first 2 weeks.
Yes, but it was not boring, that's the thing.
 
The Dauphine in itself is a good race. But it's polluted by the fact we can't help but watch it through the lens of 'who is in form for the tour?'

To clarify: it's not just about Sky winning. Obviously that's part of it. That has a deeper genealogy: the Ferrari formula that has made it so metric and quantifiable that the only romance to be found is in the admittedly beautiful scenery.

It's more that the Tour is so much bigger than any other cycling race so it sucks up so much energy, attention, money, media etc. It's imbued with so much more prestige, meaning, value. It's worth so much more. Normally in life, the more capital and attention something has, the shitter it is. And I think it is true in this instance.

And for all that vortex, it is so rarely an interesting race and so often has the appearance of a big bubble slowly deflating.

Meanwhile, the rest of the season has, in my opinion, got considerably better. So the thought experiment is simply: maybe genuine fans are better off without the tour as the centrepiece. Unthinkable, but yeah, following some of the advice of earlier posters, I do find myself more or less following the season in this fashion. I sort of just switch off now until the Vuelta and WC build up.
 
Re:

The Hegelian said:
The Dauphine in itself is a good race. But it's polluted by the fact we can't help but watch it through the lens of 'who is in form for the tour?'

To clarify: it's not just about Sky winning. Obviously that's part of it. That has a deeper genealogy: the Ferrari formula that has made it so metric and quantifiable that the only romance to be found is in the admittedly beautiful scenery.

It's more that the Tour is so much bigger than any other cycling race so it sucks up so much energy, attention, money, media etc. It's imbued with so much more prestige, meaning, value. It's worth so much more. Normally in life, the more capital and attention something has, the shitter it is. And I think it is true in this instance.

And for all that vortex, it is so rarely an interesting race and so often has the appearance of a big bubble slowly deflating.

Meanwhile, the rest of the season has, in my opinion, got considerably better. So the thought experiment is simply: maybe genuine fans are better off without the tour as the centrepiece. Unthinkable, but yeah, following some of the advice of earlier posters, I do find myself more or less following the season in this fashion. I sort of just switch off now until the Vuelta and WC build up.
Yes. As a fan, I have been happier this year (and last year) following many other races, especially the spring classics and monuments. The world championships are a good draw, too. The Vuelta may be promising. It's my thesis that this year's TDF will be every bit as sucked dry of excitement as any other one from 2012 to the present. Certain individual stages may be interesting if viewed as one-day races. The GC race is pretty much a foregone conclusion. . . . I still like watching the scenery. It's no doubt a beautiful event.
 
The worst thing that can happen to a race is when it isn't really a race anymore. The Tour has been under complete control of the richest team in 1999-2005 and again in 2012-2018 (bar the crash year 2014). There hasn't been any suspense for yellow in the final week. The trains from US Postal and Team Sky have taken all excitement out of the race, have made individual attacks pointless because they will be neutralized in the valley anyway. It looks terrible this year because the winner seems to be annointed in advance and he doesn't even have to attack. After the TTT and one ITT it will probably be over again. The opposition is supposed to come from the same riders who have failed in the previous years. When he has a mechanical they wait for him or the organizers neutralize the race. It feels like another sequel to a bad Hollywood movie. So yes, there is every reason to expect the worst. And after Wimbledon there is nothing else on television in July.
 
Yep. Add in Banesto from '91 and we have two little periods in the last 30 years - '96-98 + '06-'12 - where the tour was really open, brilliant and exciting.

But this just amplifies the pain, because it shows what it could be if things were less controlled........
 

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