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Teams & Riders Offical Wout Van Aert isn't a new Zdenek Stybar

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Using the weak field argument about the Tour is ridiculous anyway. It's by far the biggest race of the year and nobody forbid the other riders you name to be there. You can only beat the competition present, and in the Tour the competition is as good as it gets.
On a more serious note (compared to my recent posts), you know that the competition argument is a favourite of many folks. So and so was injured, did not show up, was building form, etc. Which somehow can then diminish any victories. To me it always feels a bit reductionist ... this win was because of this thing lacking, that win was because of another thing lacking, etc. But the overall is pretty amazing stuff that some riders are able to pull off!
 
When talking about victories? Yes, results matter. When talking performance? I stand by my list of 53 climbers better than Van Aert. If winning these 3 specific stages is so great why couldn't he win any monument this year?

Why I care about parcourses? That's a completely unrelated matter.
To the first: If winning those three specific stages is so easy, why didn't the riders who won monuments this year, win them? Sorry, I don't follow that line of thought.

Regarding the other thing: Caring that much about parcours must be because you care how races play out and you can appreciate great performances while they happen. Then as soon as they have happened, you just shut your eyes, forget all about that, and everything is just numbers of big wins and numbers of stages, apparently.

I think it's a very limited way of viewing the sport if the only thing a rider can be judged by is his results and nothing else.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Lol, he was nearly beaten by some marathon runner for the Belgian Sportsman of the Year award.

For a country with football players such as Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku, it seems a bit off to me that there are no footballers in the top 5, but maybe the people couldn't forgive them for not winning the Euros?

But congratulations with the award - for the second consecutive time.
Lol, it doesn't surprise me he was almost beaten. He was a total flop in his home world championships, flanders, roubaix ,and a different Belgian won sanremo.

That being said, he deserve the award because his general level throughout the season was exceptional and extremely strong. But some belgian might vote against him given his biggest flops. But for me with 3 tour stage, GW, AGRA, Tirreno, olympic medal and wolrd medal he should win the award.

If he want to reach the next level, he need to learn racecraft and start attacking again, like he did when won strade Bianche. He could study the wins of boonen, nibali, ballan , Alaphilippe, cancellara, asgreen. And the tactics. Because he doesn't implement the best tactics on his team as a leader.

View: https://youtu.be/7LxJRG3jPCo


View: https://youtu.be/jjTmKvsU5xE


View: https://youtu.be/rFp5EfOE6MI
 
Using the weak field argument about the Tour is ridiculous anyway. It's by far the biggest race of the year and nobody forbid the other riders you name to be there. You can only beat the competition present, and in the Tour the competition is as good as it gets and at the peak of their condition.
That's true. You have to applaud riders who barely crash and are not injury-prone at all.

But I do think that if you wish to discuss how a race was won, you have to take all factors into account.
You can't say you want to talk about how a race was won and then just ignore the field imo.
I don't rate breakaway stages that much.
 
That's true. You have to applaud riders who barely crash and are not injury-prone at all.

But I do think that if you wish to discuss how a race was won, you have to take all factors into account.
You can't say you want to talk about how a race was won and then just ignore the field imo.
I don't rate breakaway stages that much.
And that's fair enough, but he did beat two riders who were top 5 in Grand Tours just two years ago on possibly the hardest climb in France. And then also won the most prestigious sprint against a rider who had just equalled the record for most Tour stage wins in history.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
That's true. You have to applaud riders who barely crash and are not injury-prone at all.

But I do think that if you wish to discuss how a race was won, you have to take all factors into account.
You can't say you want to talk about how a race was won and then just ignore the field imo.
I don't rate breakaway stages that much.
I'm not saying you can wildly ignore the field, but that doing so about the field in the Tour is ridiculous as it is the race of the highest level in the year.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
If you want to "rate" Van Aert's season, you have to take into account the fact that he basically rides all year and tries to compete wherever he starts. By doing so, he is undercutting his own chances on many accounts. He didn't simply ride Tirreno for stagewins, he finished 2nd in GC and performed every day. He didn't get off the bike after the first or second week in the TDF, to focus on the Olympics. He didn't go easy in Tour of Britain, which cost him at the worlds and Roubaix.

As such, simply looking at his victories doesn't do him justice. He should really start picking his battles more carefully, because it is costing him high-profile wins.
 
If you want to "rate" Van Aert's season, you have to take into account the fact that he basically rides all year and tries to compete wherever he starts. By doing so, he is undercutting his own chances on many accounts. He didn't simply ride Tirreno for stagewins, he finished 2nd in GC and performed every day. He didn't get off the bike after the first or second week in the TDF, to focus on the Olympics. He didn't go easy in Tour of Britain, which cost him at the worlds and Roubaix.

As such, simply looking at his victories doesn't do him justice. He should really start picking his battles more carefully, because it is costing him high-profile wins.
I'll admit poor planning doesn't affect his abilities, but I don't find it an excuse for underperforming in monuments in terms of grading a year.
 
Reactions: Carrick-On-Seine
Apparently chances are that nowadays cyclocross bully Wout will not only skip the worlds in Fayetville, but might also be absent in the Strade Bianche! Full focus on the monuments, the cobbled ones most of all. This is stated in an article by Het Nieuwsblad.

They wouldn't give 2 cents for his participation in the CX worlds, a feeling shared by bondscoach Vanthourenhout. The final decision will be made after this Sunday's national championship, but Van Aert's entourage keeps advising against the overseas travel. An appearance in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad is however also very uncertain, because even his beloved Strade Bianche will probably be skipped. They want to keep Wout as fresh as possible in order to reach his peak level at de Ronde and Roubaix (which is 1 week later this season than usual), and they'll probably let him start in Paris-Nice. Giving Tiesj Benoot the chance to shine in the Strade and Tirreno.

“We are aiming for three monuments: Milan-Sanremo, the Tour of Flanders and Roubaix,” says Jumbo manager Zeeman. “In between, Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem are two important races that we want to win. The Strade is no longer a competition that belongs to Wout's primary goals, because the date is difficult if you also want to be top in Roubaix.”

“I'm not saying that Wout won't ride de Strade. We won't announce that until next week. But in top sport you have to constantly look for improvement and not always follow the same paths. In recent years we have not yet succeeded in winning the Ronde or Roubaix with Wout, so perhaps we should turn a different stone and approach the run-up differently.”
 
Strade is fine where it is. Right now you have a good mix of different riders going for it because it's at the start of the season and gives a broad amount of riders an opportunity to have a go at it. Put it around a GT and the GC contenders (like Bernal or Pogacar who were great last year) don't turn up.
Fall might work, but if you put it before IL I don't think the Lombardia specialists are willing to risk crashing (so again, the likes of Bernal and Pogacar absent), if you put it after Lombardia (which would mean mid/end October) I honestly think many of the classic specialists won't bother. For many the season will be basically done by mid/end September, if I'm someone that doesn't compete in the Italian races because I can't climb I don't see the incentive to keep my form up for a full month only for Strade.

WVA has already won it and he has underperformed in Flanders and PR last season, two monuments that suit him and he hasn't won. It's logical to skip Strade for a year and focus on these races, I'm sure he'll be back in the next years.
 
Strade is fine where it is. Right now you have a good mix of different riders going for it because it's at the start of the season and gives a broad amount of riders an opportunity to have a go at it. Put it around a GT and the GC contenders (like Bernal or Pogacar who were great last year) don't turn up.
I agree, I'd prefer to keep it were it is, and as you say you get completely different riders riding together.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Strade is fine where it is. Right now you have a good mix of different riders going for it because it's at the start of the season and gives a broad amount of riders an opportunity to have a go at it. Put it around a GT and the GC contenders (like Bernal or Pogacar who were great last year) don't turn up.
Fall might work, but if you put it before IL I don't think the Lombardia specialists are willing to risk crashing (so again, the likes of Bernal and Pogacar absent), if you put it after Lombardia (which would mean mid/end October) I honestly think many of the classic specialists won't bother. For many the season will be basically done by mid/end September, if I'm someone that doesn't compete in the Italian races because I can't climb I don't see the incentive to keep my form up for a full month only for Strade.

WVA has already won it and he has underperformed in Flanders and PR last season, two monuments that suit him and he hasn't won. It's logical to skip Strade for a year and focus on these races, I'm sure he'll be back in the next years.
Why would you want GC riders everywhere?
 

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