Le Tour 2019 stage 15: Limoux - Foix Prat d'Albis 185 km

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Rollthedice said:
Free Bernal. Actually I think he is the only rival of Pinot right now. And he is an amazing descender.
The guy currently in yellow is a pretty good descender himself so how exactly does that help? Its not like any of the (other) favorites will gain time on Alaphilippe on a descent?!
 
The Bagneres stage was always meant to be crap, but from there (including the ITT here), ASO got the pacing right of the stages with the time trial, the hard MTF and the tough, longer stage better suited to doing something from distance. There was no hiding on three consecutive days, it was all out efforts three days in a row and no thinking about tomorrow.

I really, really miss a proper queen stage in the Alps and this time around, they got the pacing hopelessly wrong on stage 18 over Galibier S which possibly will render it pretty insignificant, unfortunately. Unless someone has Andy Schleck legs, but nobody has, and they will wait for two pretty hard, but short and very mediocre stages on paper.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Libertine Seguros said:
Also: can we please take note that the 120km mountain stage was pretty dull, and the 185km mountain stage was really good?

Perhaps a couple more of these and we can stop neutering mountain stages perpetuating the misconception that when it comes to the mountains, short stages are automatically good and long stages are automatically bad?
I think, more than its length, the fact there wasn't 20km of valley in between climbs played a more significant role.
 
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tobydawq said:
Libertine Seguros said:
Also: can we please take note that the 120km mountain stage was pretty dull, and the 185km mountain stage was really good?

Perhaps a couple more of these and we can stop neutering mountain stages perpetuating the misconception that when it comes to the mountains, short stages are automatically good and long stages are automatically bad?
I don't think yesterday's stage was dull at all. I thought it was edge-of-the-seat stuff. Sure, the attacks did come very late on the final climb but the journey up Tourmalet was nerve-wracking because you just did not know what would happen. Additionally, everybody seemed to be very even and still thinking they could win the Tour, so they were afraid to go too early because they might lose everything. That certainly had more of a role to play in the lack of attacks than the length of the stage!

Also, I think yesterday's stage was ridden quite hard (Bardet and Yates were already spilled on the Soulor) which was felt by many today, even if you always act as if short distance stages are a walk in the park and they are only allowable if placed after a long stage. But it also works the other way around.
Pacing, as Valv.Piti points out, is an all-important factor in the correct use of the short stage in order to get maximum benefit from it. It doesn't have to be after a long stage, but that does help. Today's stage worked so well because yesterday finished on a mountaintop finish that was tough enough that it would automatically generate time gaps; as a result, there was no fear of today's stage to neuter the previous stage, as has been often the criticism of real queen stages, because there would always be time gaps generated by a summit finish at the Tourmalet, much as other super-sized climbs like Ventoux or Stelvio, or super-steep walls like Angliru and Zoncolan, will generate them. The short stage can work late in a mountain chain even without the previous stage being long - however, having it after a long stage is the easiest way to extract maximum benefit from both stages - the long stage would be unlikely to be raced as hard if the following stage was less short, and the short stage will be harder to control if the stage before is long because the domestiques have had to do more work to survive it.

The best example of the short stage working outside of the "tail of a chain of mountain stages" role in recent years is Andalo in the 2016 Giro. There, it came straight after the rest day, so it came with a complete cold open as nobody knew how anybody had reacted to the rest day, and the stage after it was a flat stage, so there was no reason to be afraid of it. Just making a 120km mountain stage and assuming it will be great because it's short is far too simplistic - we saw a string of 'more human' Vuelta mountain stages in the early 2000s, and most of them were rubbish. We saw several of them in the 2004 Giro, and that's regarded as one of the worst editions ever. It's become a fad, but has proliferated to such an extent that I feel it's noteworthy when a long mountain stage does deliver, as it seems race organizers have somewhat forgotten how to design long mountain stages as a consequence of searching for these more explosive days (notwithstanding that some of them - say, Angliru in 2017 for example - are kind of irrelevant to the short stage debate because an Angliru stage will pretty much always follow a similar format regardless of length, due to the brutality of the final climb) to the point where I feared the "long mountain stages don't deliver" would become a self-fulfilling prophecy as race organizers would marginalize them and the péloton would forget how to maximise them as increasing numbers of them have raced increasingly few stages of that kind.
 
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klintE said:
hrotha said:
Pinot is still behind last year's winner, who might be on an upwards trend.
He wouldn't be if "windy stage" didn't popup.
I think we may see strongest fibopino ever. Alps shall say.
And he would be again if there had been anything deserving the name of "ITT". At the end of the day, it's not reasonable for a pure climber to expect not to lose any time in the first week of the Tour.
 
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hrotha said:
klintE said:
hrotha said:
Pinot is still behind last year's winner, who might be on an upwards trend.
He wouldn't be if "windy stage" didn't popup.
I think we may see strongest fibopino ever. Alps shall say.
And he would be again if there had been anything deserving the name of "ITT". At the end of the day, it's not reasonable for a pure climber to expect not to lose any time in the first week of the Tour.
There was a TTT anyway
 
Jul 10, 2011
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A day of rest + 2 days where the contenders will not be stressed. Will Alaphilippe be rested enough to fight off the attacks? Will the others be rested enough to make their attacks stick?
 
Apr 23, 2018
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hfer07 said:
what an insane stage!!!
Kudos to S Yates
Kudos to Landani & MoviStar- great tactics
Kudos to Pinot - so much courage & panache!

G, Bernal & Ineos better get their act together soon, because LVJ, DFfJ & Movistar are making their moves count big time!

Alaphilippe? incredible - as in -difficult to believe- :D but the man was able to hang on :lol:

This Tour is turning into a special one :)
This post right here. But it is still a long way to Paris. Anything can happen. Wonderful Tour so far.
 
Chapeau Thibaut Pinot! And congrats to Simon Yates on another good result. Really enjoyed this one, even though it didn't get the chance to watch it live.

Seems sort of anti-climactic, like watching the penultimate episode of TV show; all of this action and now we have to wait until next weekend to find out what happens. I will be definitely tuning in next Thursday.
 
Pretty heroic stuff from Landa and Pinot given the range of their attacks. This stage had what the Tourmalet should also have had, but made up for that disapoinment in spades. A real advertisement for salary caps to produce racing where no team is so financially dominant they can shut down every attack for days on end (like Ineos would have been able to if Poels, Bernal and Thomas were on domestique duty).

Glad MS gave up on Adam early on to give Simon opportunities. I hope he has a crack at KotM as I dont think we are any closer to establishing a favourite for that jersey.
 

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