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Lachlan Morton

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apologies if I hurt your feelings for any of those races!
You were on my ignore list and I only replied after seeing an ignored member answered.
I stand by my opinion, and I backed it up by facts. Fine if you disagree, everyone can appreciate races differently. I can enjoy watching a junior race locally as much (or more) than some stages in the TdF or some classics. But that doesn't mean the junior race is a higher level of racing. It's a higher level of entertainment, that's true. And this brings me to the last bit I've got to say about Unbound: I didn't exactly find it entertaining. It was the first year I followed it more closely. But it wasn't as good a spectator sport as e.g. cyclocross or road racing. It's one of those sports that's more fun to do yourself than to watch (contrary to CX which I don't really enjoy, it's just too hard / explosive / unforgiving).
I can't think of a single gravel race that has every been broadcast at the level of your average 1.Pro European road race. The money simply hasn't been there. I'd wait to see that before deciding whether it is entertaining to watch or not, though I suspect most of the races are too long and the field too much in pieces by the finale to be particularly exciting.

I find cyclocross more fun to race than gravel, but again, there is no accounting for tastes. Gravel rides (not races) are almost always enjoyable.
 
You aren't saying anything I haven't said: Morton and Haga have world tour pedigree and are still relatively young, so they got 1 and 2.

McElveen probably has beautiful, inspiring stories to tell all his followers so he gets a sponsorship, yet he was 76th on the world's gravel when riders have to fight for position. The rider passing him at this moment got 4th, after his retirement:
View: https://youtu.be/3Cqwr5gPGxU?t=82


To argue that other, better performing riders in protour wouldn't almost automatically also make the top 10 because they didn't know the secret password and aren't wearing the magic gravel ring on their fingers is just silly.
Unbound has evolved, and to finish top 3 or top 5, you have to be a very very good gravel racer. But to say that it's a stacked field and pros would suffer to battle top 5... look for a minute at some training rides of pros on strava. Plenty of 7+ hour stuff with 4-5000 vertical meters. e.g. 2 rides in a typical week on altitude by WvA:
The American riders started at the back of the WC grid and everyone's stated goal was to get Swenson to the front as quickly as possible. Their finish positions kind of show that early effort. Big Wout fan but 211 kilometers is not 200 miles. Oh and, if a big bunch of WT pros shows up at Unbound it's no more likely to wind up in a big bunch sprint than is Paris-Roubaix.
 
Let me lay out some common ground rules, most disciplines of cycling are relative not scientific outcomes. If science were the absolute predictor, guys would show up and compare data, get on the podium, exchange pleasantries and go home. So if Morton producing some hampster like wattage of @3 per kilo or something slightly lower or higher, who gives a flying fudgecicle. All that matters is that Lachlan produced more everything important on a single day against Niki Terpstra,Keegan Swenson, Greg Van Avermaet, and as significant as any measuring metric, he also beat current World Champion, Matej Mahoric. on that day and time, place. So he showed up when it counted.
Hardly find giving a guy his due as idol worship. And in something that is worthy of Idol worship to some degree is being a renaissance man. Old metric said that road racing and mountain biking, he didn't measure up daily, but in a different calculation, he is now better paid, better recognized, and informal survey of course, better liked and more marketable than at the height of his road racing wattage production. Got lemons, make lemonade. Morton is not a monster, you established that, hundreds or thousands of other riders able to break the meter on some Zwift scale or he doesn't, didn't stack up to others Strata resumes.. Wattage and winning are not the only measurements, the guy is successful despite old standards or current standards, he is doing things, saying things differently.
And all the talk about backwater BS race here or there, middle of nowhere USA or someplace else.. Just invalid. Everyone who wanted to showed up to beat the f-ck out of stringy hippie looking Lachlan Morton, instead shook his hand in disbelief.
PS..they went back to a nutritionist and coaching staff, he ate burgers and downed some beers after he won!! Guy is going to be a cycling folk legend while everyone is throwing hate his way!!
* we should deport him back to Australia!!* just kidding!!
 
PS..they went back to a nutritionist and coaching staff, he ate burgers and downed some beers after he won!! Guy is going to be a cycling folk legend while everyone is throwing hate his way!!
* we should deport him back to Australia!!* just kidding!!
Come on you don't think Van Avermaet ad a couple beers after that ride? It seems like people here are a lot more invested in the difference between "road pros" and "gravel experts" than the riders themselves are and amongst the fans there is just as much of a false sense of superiority on the one side as there is on the other. With good reason most top WT pros aren't gonna show up at the start of a 200 mile gravel race 3 weeks before the TDF (if they are doing it). I suspect Mahoric only got a pass from Bahrain because he was wearing the WC kit, but I bet all his training was geared to shorter more intense efforts. Kudoes to both Volderke and ChewbaccaDefens e for keeping it high class. ;)
 
Come on you don't think Van Avermaet ad a couple beers after that ride? It seems like people here are a lot more invested in the difference between "road pros" and "gravel experts" than the riders themselves are and amongst the fans there is just as much of a false sense of superiority on the one side as there is on the other. With good reason most top WT pros aren't gonna show up at the start of a 200 mile gravel race 3 weeks before the TDF (if they are doing it). I suspect Mahoric only got a pass from Bahrain because he was wearing the WC kit, but I bet all his training was geared to shorter more intense efforts. Kudoes to both Volderke and ChewbaccaDefens e for keeping it high class. ;)
I'm not invested in anything, nor am I claiming Lachlan is a god of cycling. What I like about the guy is that his prime focus is that he loves riding a bike. The rides he does here are absolutely great adventure. I love those canyons so much, it's really cool to see that he is exploring them and coming to love them as well. Those roads are really cool sh!t.

Voldamort was throwing out bait to get a bite, and I'm always happy to be a fish on a hook. Now you seem to have some need to throw out some bait as well. Fine, like I said, I think his win deserves some praise, mostly because he clearly was not the strongest guy in that race, he just took his shot and it worked out. Mohoric (and the other WT pros in years past) can't just come here and mail it in to get the Cracker Jack prize. Races like that, Leadville, Crusher, Rebecca's, Lost and Found, and many others, are different types of races, because the organizers want them to be. Do I think it's cool that a Fred like me gets to line up on the same line as guys like Finsterwald, Mortin, Stetina, and many others? Heck yes. I may come in after they've had their shower, and sometimes gotten their medals (this includes my wife...she's a beast, what can I say), but I still pedaled those same roads, dirt roads, and trails. Sh!t on that if you must. I guess that must be the truly high class way to interpret all of this.

POST #14...I WIN!!!

EDIT: And don't let me forget other people who finish well ahead of me, like Hannah Otto, Heather Jackson, Onweller, and Smith.
 
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Come on you don't think Van Avermaet ad a couple beers after that ride? It seems like people here are a lot more invested in the difference between "road pros" and "gravel experts" than the riders themselves are and amongst the fans there is just as much of a false sense of superiority on the one side as there is on the other. With good reason most top WT pros aren't gonna show up at the start of a 200 mile gravel race 3 weeks before the TDF (if they are doing it). I suspect Mahoric only got a pass from Bahrain because he was wearing the WC kit, but I bet all his training was geared to shorter more intense efforts. Kudoes to both Volderke and ChewbaccaDefens e for keeping it high class. ;)
I say this not smiling, Belgians can probably drink American beers before, during and after riding and racing!! I have always liked the guy and his style. I saw this.. Didn't make up beer and burgers!! I really hope more Belgians return to race and enjoy middle America!!
View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZV1Kv-MsBY&pp=ygUcbGFjaGxhbiBtb3J0b24gYWZ0ZXIgdW5ib3VuZA%3D%3D
 
I say this not smiling, Belgians can probably drink American beers before, during and after riding and racing!! I have always liked the guy and his style. I saw this.. Didn't make up beer and burgers!! I really hope more Belgians return to race and enjoy middle America!!
View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZV1Kv-MsBY&pp=ygUcbGFjaGxhbiBtb3J0b24gYWZ0ZXIgdW5ib3VuZA%3D%3D
If that video doesn't endear you to the guy, I don't know what will. He actually addresses all of the issues we are, in a much classier way. Dude clearly just loves to ride his bike.
 
I say this not smiling, Belgians can probably drink American beers before, during and after riding and racing!! I have always liked the guy and his style. I saw this.. Didn't make up beer and burgers!! I really hope more Belgians return to race and enjoy middle America!!
View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZV1Kv-MsBY&pp=ygUcbGFjaGxhbiBtb3J0b24gYWZ0ZXIgdW5ib3VuZA%3D%3D
I enjoy these 'long form' interviews, but it takes me a few session to get through them.

I frequently listen to Gypsy Tales, but they are 1-3 hours!
 
This entire forum has become a troll fest from a small number of posters that just want to tell everyone that their opinion is stupid.
completely agree, never said anything else.

That's what's a bit silly. GvA = 2 flats. Niki Terpstra = way beyond his peak (like GvA). Keegan Swenson... never heard of him. Matej Mohoric: a broken wheel.
So all in all, a weak field, and that is honestly the only thing I said: a weak field and as important, I said this in reaction to somebody said it wasn't a weak field. I didn't say this unsolicited. I wasn't saying this to downgrade any of the finishers' effort. I just reacted to something, I backed it up with some data and arguments. End of story one would think but hell no: Suddenly the mob thought I was disrespecting any of those riders.
Well, I wasn't. I am in awe having even watched parts of the race on all kinds of channels / twitter /... live and shortly after the race. I've been thinking of doing Unbound myself as Euro gravel racing is... a bit stupid (big fields, super hard fight for positioning and once you're in the lead group, nobody wants to pull so very tactically and nothing heroic like e.g. Unbound).


I was, for a while, in rock climbing. Big walls as well as bouldering, and some mountaineering. I dreamed (and still dreaming) of doing anything around 7500 in the Himalayas but I haven't got enough experience in mixed / technical climbing so nothing too crazy. I read magazines / the internet about anything Rheinhold Messner, Walter Bonatti, ... I read everything about the mountains I want to see like Kedarnath, Thalay Sagar, Kamet in Uttarakhand, Machapuchare and Himachuli in Nepal and I still want to visit Everest Bascamp and K2 basecamp once in my life. It's because of guys like Ueli Steck, who set all kinds of speed records, that the slow, 'true' spirit of mountaineering became more and more competitive. This happened way sooner in rock climbing, even making it into the olympics. But who wants to see Adam Ondra on an artificial wall, speedclimbing, at the olympics while you can watch him climb an overhang in a cave or you can watch Alex Honnold do free solo?

Gravel racing is, in a way, a similar affair. Short, explosive gravel races (like in Europe) are not to be compared to the very long ones (Unbound) and the continental divide, just like crit racing is different from classics from 3 HC climb stages from ultraraces like the transcontinental. Each has its merits and audience, and I honestly like watching all racing. Like in climbing, where some rock climbers made it into the very top of alpine climbers conquering 8000-ers at top speed, there are pro racers who are, and will compete in long gravel races / convert into ultra cycling and smash speed records and top times in those disciplines. Does that matter? Does that take anything away from those that are, here and now, laying the foundations of the sport in the early days? Not at all. Each and every stage in the evolution of a sport has its stars, stories, adventures. I didn't take anything away from this. It doesn't matter if there are potential competitors of a higher standard out there, who didn't compete. I totally agree with this. And exactly for that reason I wonder why you (not me) started judging / weighing the Unbound field vs. the pro tour field by mentioning GvA, and now, in your latest reaction, Terpstra, Mohoric. This was a comparison I would never start making. You started it. So if you want to go that way, I'll tell it like it is, but as you said as well: it doesn't matter. So don't mention it.
I think that we are talking about the same thing just you missed the important part. Everyone gravel wants to win Unbound, and gravel world championship. Full stop.

Lachlan Morton won Unbound against defending Unbound champion and he won against the UCI recognized world champion, Matej Mahoric, which I tried to put in some context, Mahoric lives in Slovenia, he has a family and a day job, don't know if you heard that his regular job is preparing for the TDF.
So before you think my list says Brad Pitt, Chris Hemsworth or some other universally recognized male specimen, no. Lachlan Morton showed up on the only day that matters, gravel cycling super bowl and won.
You may find wattage measurements and people who were not at the party significant, me not so much. Morton, my anti hero won the race.
And PS, there are a variety of mountain and rock climbing disciplines, I enjoy watching all! Some are artistic and subjective. With the process of climbing being artistry and beautiful. While others are a timed event were technique is on discount, what matters is how fast you get from the bottom to the top, fastest climber wins. Morton is no artist, and he is no speedster, instead just an effective solution..
 
Volderke, your attempt at a dig, "Keegan Swenson, never heard of him"..I will accept that, so who are the recognizable names in gravel racing if Swenson does show up on your radar?
The space is ever expanding for sure. Swenson with 5th at UCI World Championship, don't know if only the four riders in front of him deserve your recognition.
Tough to enjoy bike racing if only 4 racers are considered worthy. Sounds like a daily disappointing rollercoaster, seldom do the same 4 riders finish in front, race after race..my opinion, if you don't know who Keegan Swenson is you don't know gravel racing. No matter the metric, guy is top 5 in the world.