I think there's both a bit of a disdain for sprinters and a deification of Merckx in particular. Some other sports do it with the earlier legends too. But let's be real. A bunch of Merckx wins were half stages, and he rode in days when a bunch of riders were semi-pros at best.
There seems to be this underlying idea Cav wouldn't be worthy of the stage record for some reason, or that he's unworthy of being a legend of the sport in his own right.
Although personally as a big Cav fan there is a part of me that would like this Tour to be the end of his TdF career; 4 time stage winner and green jersey winner, even with another fortunate set of circumstances it's almost impossible that he'll repeat that next year and pretty unlikely he'll grab one stage win, never mind multiple. Wouldn't it be better if this was his last Tour de France, rather than a potential dud?
Is there anything wrong with flat stages and sprints?Let's be real. Cavendish got at least one win after missing the time cut. All of his wins were in bunch sprints. Most of them in pan-flat stages. The vast majority of the stages he won were thanks to relying on a wonderful train (HTC back in the days, Deceuninck this year). If we were to point out the flaws in the wins leading up to the record, Cavendish surely won't look better than Eddy.
In race design, obviously. But I think it's a bit ridiculous to blame a sprinter for winning sprints and taking a record that way. The record is specifically about Tour stage wins, with no style points attached, and nobody uses that record to prop up Cavendish as a champion like Merckx anyway.I will save this for when you comment on the next TDF route reveal.
Cavendish is already hurt in his palmares by being a sprinter in that he can't win stage races of any prestige and that he can't win most classics of any prestige.
Wow, no love for the God of Thunder smhSagan, Boonen and Freire all way better sprinters than Cav smh
Not 4 times he would have. Merlier is clearly quicker than Philipsen, but as shown in both the Giro and the Tour he can't get over mountains so he'll always have trouble making the time cut 3 weeks straight.CaV wOuLdN't HaVe EvEn BeAtEn MeRlIeR iF hE dIdN't HaVe To PlAy LeAdOuT tO pHiLiPsEn.