Pantani 99 vs Armstrong 99

Its really a damn shame we never got to see this epic showdown, by 2000 Pantani was already way too coked up. Pantani in '99 form wouldve likely whiped the floor with Lance though.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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classicomano said:
Its really a damn shame we never got to see this epic showdown, by 2000 Pantani was already way too coked up. Pantani in '99 form wouldve likely whiped the floor with Lance though.
I think Pantani would have crushed Lance in the mountains. Giro 1999 was incredible to watch. I remember how he on the Oropa climb chased down everyone including Jalabert after his mechanical problem.
 
Jun 5, 2014
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Thats all hypothetical ( unfortunately). We know an 85 % Pantani, not having touched his bikes until spring 2000 and only with the giro in his legs, dropped Armstrong in Courchevel (6-7 % climb, more suited to power climbing).
We saw him getting better day by day, completely bonking at Hautacam, then Ventoux after being dropped attacking 5 times, suffering on Lance's wheel. Briancon 1,5 km finish gaining some seconds on Armstrong ( do not think Lance would have conceded even 1 second to Pantani after Ventoux ) then finally Courchevel. Then we all know how it went, with his personal problems and this a**hole of J.M LeBlanc not inviting him in 2001 (100th edition), declaring Pantani as a "finished cyclist" in February 2001 (!). One of those things which were a straight shot at Pantani's heart, after all he gave the French people, never refusing to take part after a hard Giro d' Italia despite those 50 km TT's and not many mountain stages.

Pantani rode Alpe d'Huez twice or 3 times under 37 minutes vs Armstrong 38:01 in 2001 (his best year imo) and 37:35 in a tt. To put it short: He was the better climber. In a Giro, no chance for Lance. If we talk about a Pantani at 95-100%.
In those Tours ...2 x 50 km TT...a lot more difficult for Pantani. But in '99 Armstrong wasn't particularly amazing. He was the best climber and TTist but not that far ahead of the likes of Escartin.

Pantani was in the shape of his life in 99...you saw the best Jalabert, the best Roberto Heras following him for 200 m , then completely blow up. Out of the saddle every 10 sec. Alpe di Pampeago on the 12-15 % ramps he seemed to ride 5 % less gradient than the others. He was even better than in 97 or 95 when he put those incredible Alpe times, or 98 TdF.

When you know how corrupt the system was at the time (one chased by CONI the other protected from UCI) and looking at what we learned about anti-doping ( won't go into detail here), we can come to the conclusion that we were denied of one of the greatest battles of the last 30-40 years. " They could have chosen 99% of the present cyclists. They chose me" ( one of the last letters before his death).

Given that both were 1 year apart in age, I believe he would have beaten a ' 99 Armstrong at the TdF, the 2003 Armstrong. 2001 and 2004 didn't have 2 ITT's but 1 ITT, 1 MTT, and 1 TTT? Then very close call, because Lance was at absolute 100 % and still had 1 long ITT + TTT on his side. 2000 if Marco would have been in '99 form...without 2 ITT advantage Pantani, with those 2 I would say pretty even. But then again, Lance had an off-day on the Joux Plane. 2002 advantage Armstrong, in top shape, no off-days, 2 ITT.

I don't know if this thread belongs here. I would approve it. From time to time I think it's good to speculate and discuss about those things. Don't know if there is a history section in this forum.
That's just my 2 cents. I didn't have the opportunity yet to express myself over this subject, so I'm sorry - next posts will be shorter. ;)
 
May 11, 2014
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Armstrong was over 7 minutes ahead of Escartin in '99, he was far superior. The Zulle situation is different because of his crash early in the race
 
Mar 9, 2012
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Would Pantani have smashed Armstrong?

Mh?


To come straight to the point, hell yes!
Pantani on form crushed everything.
 
Jul 10, 2012
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Dr. Juice said:
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That's just my 2 cents. I didn't have the opportunity yet to express myself over this subject, so I'm sorry - next posts will be shorter. ;)
No, thanks for an insightful and thoughtful post! :)
 
Aug 6, 2011
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I think that an important part of the discussion cannot be held in this forum. If we, like a naive behaviorist, focus solely on the manifest results, I think I'll agree with Juice.
 
Pantani would have blown Lance's legs off on the first MTF, 2mins+ IMHO...

What would be interesting is how Wonderboy, or more specifically his ego, would have handled/coped with that!
 
Jul 10, 2013
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BeagRigh said:
Pantani would have blown Lance's legs off on the first MTF, 2mins+ IMHO...

What would be interesting is how Wonderboy, or more specifically his ego, would have handled/coped with that!
Lance would've plowed right through him.
 
Aug 6, 2011
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The_Juan said:
# on competitions he won.
That does not tell me much. If Pantani were allowed to continue during the '99 Giro, then he probably would have dominated for a while. However, that was not the case and he never regained his former level. Armstrong never had to deal with such a major blow to his program.
 
Amazinmets73 said:
Armstrong was over 7 minutes ahead of Escartin in '99, he was far superior. The Zulle situation is different because of his crash early in the race
Yes, this is an important point about Zulle. Lance was a lot less dominant than his victory time would suggest because of the time he got on the causeway crash stage. I even remember Lance getting gapped by Zulle on one of the MTFs and lose a handful of seconds, so I don't think a peak Pantani would've had much trouble getting chunks of time when he went full gas. And as hrotha stated, Pantani was no slouch at the TT by that time as exemplified by finishing third behind Ullrich and Julich in the final TT the year prior. I would guess Pantani would win, but just by a 2-3 mins.
 
May 11, 2014
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djpbaltimore said:
Yes, this is an important point about Zulle. Lance was a lot less dominant than his victory time would suggest because of the time he got on the causeway crash stage. I even remember Lance getting gapped by Zulle on one of the MTFs and lose a handful of seconds, so I don't think a peak Pantani would've had much trouble getting chunks of time when he went full gas. And as hrotha stated, Pantani was no slouch at the TT by that time as exemplified by finishing third behind Ullrich and Julich in the final TT the year prior. I would guess Pantani would win, but just by a 2-3 mins.
How did Pantani preform in his 2 TTs in the '99 Giro?
 
djpbaltimore said:
Yes, this is an important point about Zulle. Lance was a lot less dominant than his victory time would suggest because of the time he got on the causeway crash stage. I even remember Lance getting gapped by Zulle on one of the MTFs and lose a handful of seconds, so I don't think a peak Pantani would've had much trouble getting chunks of time when he went full gas. And as hrotha stated, Pantani was no slouch at the TT by that time as exemplified by finishing third behind Ullrich and Julich in the final TT the year prior. I would guess Pantani would win, but just by a 2-3 mins.
He finished 3rd, but lost something close to 3 minutes
 
roundabout said:
He finished 3rd, but lost something close to 3 minutes
@2:35 to be exact. I didn't recall that it was quite that big of a time loss. Looking back on the 1999 TDF route, it definitely plays into the hands of the TTer with 2 TTs of over 50kms and only 3 MTFs (Lance lost 9sec to Zulle and Virenque on Piau-Engaly).
 

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