Miguel Ángel Lopez Discussion Thread

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Mas is a great domestique, just ask Primoz Roglic.

On a more serious note, he spent large parts of 2019 working for Alaphilippe, especially at the Tour. Can't remember Lopez sacrificing himself at a race he was targeting, and even if he has, he did absolutely no work for Mas at the Vuelta so at best he's the pot who's calling the kettle black.
He was always very close to Mas in GC, and had a significant gap to 4th in GC. Him working for Mas would have been one of the dumbest thing to do from a team standpoint. Not as dumb as throwing away the chance to have 2 riders on the podium in the famous stage though.

Mas did barely any work for Alaphilippe in the Tour of 2019. From the moment people thought Alaphilippe had a chance to play a role in GC onwards Mas got dropped anywhere and everywhere.

The Dauphiné was actually a great example. MAL had more than 30s on Valverde and Mas in GC, but decided to work for Valverde, while Mas just sat there a sprinted for his own in the end.
 
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No matter if there's some truth to it (which I certainly believe there is), I hate this kind of behavior where people act like everything's fine, but then suddenly when something does not work as they want, they act like everything has been bad the whole time and blast others publicly.

If "in the Grand Tours, our roles were not clear” or “The atmosphere in Movistar was always very tense" or “Enric is a selfish person, I don’t want to share races with him again” and you knew it the whole time, why the hell did you extend your contract in summer?

There are only two possible reasons:
(1) Contrary to what you state now, the situation was not always bad, so you extended your contract convinced that it's the right decision. And now you're in your feelings and angry, and just have a completely biased and resentful view on the whole situation, bringing up stuff that never seemed to be a problem before (and that you probably wouldn't even consider a problem if you would have finished in front of Mas in La Vuelta).
(2) You couldn't stand Mas and the team the whole time, but still decided to extend your contract without mentioning the issues, which makes you a real hypocrite.

Either way, this behavior actually makes López appear in a very bad light.
 
No matter if there's some truth to it (which I certainly believe there is), I hate this kind of behavior where people act like everything's fine, but then suddenly when something does not work as they want, they act like everything has been bad the whole time and blast others publicly.

If "in the Grand Tours, our roles were not clear” or “The atmosphere in Movistar was always very tense" or “Enric is a selfish person, I don’t want to share races with him again” and you knew it the whole time, why the hell did you extend your contract in summer?

There are only two possible reasons:
(1) Contrary to what you state now, the situation was not always bad, so you extended your contract convinced that it's the right decision. And now you're in your feelings and angry, and just have a completely biased and resentful view on the whole situation, bringing up stuff that never seemed to be a problem before (and that you probably wouldn't even consider a problem if you would have finished in front of Mas in La Vuelta).
(2) You couldn't stand Mas and the team the whole time, but still decided to extend your contract without mentioning the issues, which makes you a real hypocrite.

Either way, this behavior actually makes López appear in a very bad light.
Sure, especially for people who didn't like López before.
 
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The situation with MAL in the Vuelta and afterwards was difficult - for himself, the Vuelta, Movistar, Mas, and for Astana.

Normally the riders just perform well, without any problems.

Manolo (Saiz) always told his riders, „You are getting paid for cycling, not for thinking!“.

I think Manolo was right. Cases like MAL, however, show that the best legs are useless when the brain doesn‘t perform.
 
Sure, especially for people who didn't like López before.
Not sure if you allude to me, but I was totally in favor of Movistar signing him, which is well-documented in this thread and the Movistar thread. Actually I like him way more as a cyclist than Mas, whose racing style always felt a bit boring to me. And I really dislike how this ended, because I think López and Movistar could have been really profitting from each other.

But that doesn't take away from López handling this situation in a bad manner. He's like the guy proposing to his girl in summer, leaving her alone after an argument on vacation, and when she finally breaks up with him, telling her he never liked her anyway. It's not even important who was right or wrong in the actual argument to see that this is bad behavior.
 
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No matter if there's some truth to it (which I certainly believe there is), I hate this kind of behavior where people act like everything's fine, but then suddenly when something does not work as they want, they act like everything has been bad the whole time and blast others publicly.

If "in the Grand Tours, our roles were not clear” or “The atmosphere in Movistar was always very tense" or “Enric is a selfish person, I don’t want to share races with him again” and you knew it the whole time, why the hell did you extend your contract in summer?

There are only two possible reasons:
(1) Contrary to what you state now, the situation was not always bad, so you extended your contract convinced that it's the right decision. And now you're in your feelings and angry, and just have a completely biased and resentful view on the whole situation, bringing up stuff that never seemed to be a problem before (and that you probably wouldn't even consider a problem if you would have finished in front of Mas in La Vuelta).
(2) You couldn't stand Mas and the team the whole time, but still decided to extend your contract without mentioning the issues, which makes you a real hypocrite.

Either way, this behavior actually makes López appear in a very bad light.
So as an employee of any organization you would/should make known your grevances with internal politics and policies even against self interest?
 
There's probably not a nice guy and a bad guy in this, both Mas and Lopez want to win and place best and not work for the other, and the team didn't make it sufficiently clear in advance what the hierarchy and plans were.
I remember Mas being so very upset and angry when he had that mechanical in the ITT... don't remember which race... he's clearly very driven as well. Lopez comes across as immature though, yes.
 
I was very surprised that he had signed a contract with Movistar in the first place as he had criticized the team and Valverde in the earlier Vuelta. However it made a lot of sense tactically as MAL offers an attacking option so that teams GC leader can profit off while MAL can either recover/gain time and take stage wins. With his TT pedigree, it is very unlikely for him to win a GC without attacking.
In this Vuelta, all he had to do was to follow Haig while Mas follows Yates. Bahrain had the strongest team as seen when they chased Roglic/Bernal. The options should have been explained to him before the race and that he could lose the 3rd place either on that stage or the TT and that he should not have unrealistic expectations of the team due to low strength.
But between the team that can't explain and the rider who can't understand, it was a lost cause.
 
Of course not, I would just extend my contract for twice the duration of my original one as MAL did. :rolleyes:
I agree in hindsight he should not have resigned, but....There is a pattern here - they sign these guys to win GTs and expect them to be happy in these mismanaged attempts backing multiple leaders.

Lopez, “The atmosphere in Movistar was always very tense,” López told Colombian TV station RCN on their program ‘Chupando Rueda’. "Whenever I was ahead, Enric always looked for a way to move in front of me, [so] our roles were not clear. "

Quintana, "I do not regret having dropped a rank," Quintana said. "I wanted to be happy, I did not want to argue with the other leaders, waging war is not my way of working. We have a lot of responsibility in this adventure. Winning is good, it gives me confidence and joy."

Carapaz, "It's like having a knife over your head and not knowing when it will fall. There were situations in the race where both of us were there and you didn't know who was riding for whom

Landa, "I see a team always willing to lend me a hand, that reassures me. He didn't find it before. Yes, he had found it. In Movistar I had the best teammates. What happens is that they were not only for me, also for Valverde and Quintana . And being with all three at the same time is complicated. Taking advantage of each leader is difficult and you don't find everything you need. "
 
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So basically, Movistar have a great support structure in place as long as there is a clear leader in place, and when they have too many stars they aren't able to manage them in the manner of a USPS or a Sky without upsetting somebody? I mean, that's how they've been since time immemorial, remember Olano and Chava in '98?

Landa is a lot more philosophical and realistic about the team. To run the multiple leader set-up they committed to with Valverde/Quintana/Landa resulted in them having to tie a lot more of the budget into leadership, offering less support in terms of both race entry spots and simply the quality of domestiques as they had to sacrifice renewals of a lot of useful ATVs and rouleurs to afford it.

Of those who've left with grievances, you can see reasons for a lot of it. Carapaz had just reached the point of being able to lead and his agent was on bad terms with the team. The team backed him to that Giro win and then probably acted like he owed them more than he did or got pissed at him because of Acquadro. Quintana, like Visconti before him, was seeing his results diminish and not enough room in races for specifically his support guys, and was probably being marginalised somewhat in the multi-leader setup, certainly more than he had been in previous years such as 2014 and 2016 where Valverde had initially worked for him. And López, well, precocious but temperamental, short-fused rider known for anger outbursts signs as co-leader for team that he has previously publicly slated, which is renowned for questionable tactics and history of struggling to manage multiple leaders, what could possibly go wrong? Why do you think a guy at 26 and coming off winning the queen stage of the Tour de France only signed on a one-year flyer? The thing that was weird was simply that the experiment had worked... almost too well. The team had backed him and given him time to recover from his case of Covid, he'd been a good servant at the Tour and whatever the off-bike stuff was like, on-bike he was complimenting Mas well in the Vuelta. He'd signed an extension because the experiment had been deemed a success. But a guy as volatile as Supermán working with a guy as stubborn as Unzué, there was always the possibility of a blow-up, I just didn't expect it to be quite the way it happened, or so soon after the extension. I thought it would either be immediately and early on, or once he'd extended, some simmering tension across next year until it all blew up. Not "everything is fine" one minute and "rip everything up and salt the earth" the next.
 
I remember Mas being so very upset and angry when he had that mechanical in the ITT... don't remember which race... he's clearly very driven as well. Lopez comes across as immature though, yes.
Valenciana. The organizers gave Mas a flat because Valverde decided to ride Amstel Gold Race instead of sticking to his promised All-Spain schedule.
 
I'm eternally amused by all these riders that aren't clearly superior to their teammates but who nevertheless expect full support from a dedicated team instead of accepting that the only way they can win big is if they have equally strong teammates with the freedom to wage a guerrilla war. "The roles were not clear". *** you were like 37th and 38th in the GC or whatever, why would anyone throw all their chips into your pot.
 
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