Paris-Roubaix

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ergmonkey said:
For the same reason, I would rather take Fabian Cancellara to Roubaix with a solid but more anonymous team instead of assembling a "dream team" of guys like George Hincapie, Juan Antonio Flecha, Leif Hoste, Nick Nuyens, and a few more strong riders who are less likely to win a first Roubaix than Cancellara and Boonen are to repeat.
I'd like to see neither Boonen or Spartacus win it this year.
I'd much rather see one of the above get away while everyone else is fart-arsing about marking/watching the big two
throw in the likes of devolder, breschel and a few others even including o'grady
 
Lots of comments in this thread suggesting that Boonen had a bad 2010. I think that's not really accurate.

Sure he didn't win any of the big ones, but he was pretty strong. Recall that he was gaining time on the chasers in the final kms of Flanders (even while Canc was gaining time on him), and he was arguably the only one of the chasers at PR who wasn't racing for second place. Without Spartacus in either of those races (or E3), we would all be lauding another Year of Boonen over our Fresty Fresh sandwiches.

As for 2011, I'm holding out hope for Haussler, Nuyens, or Pippo to mix it up in Flanders, but I have a hard time imagining anyone staying away from a motivated Boonen/Spartacus-led chase group.

I like Hushovd or Boonen in a small bunch finish at PR--but it would be cool to see Pippo, Balan, or Canc sneak away in the final kms. (Just not the final 50.)
 
Aug 11, 2009
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mr. tibbs said:
Lots of comments in this thread suggesting that Boonen had a bad 2010. I think that's not really accurate.
I agree completely. Boonen clearly was motivated and disciplined over the winter, and he arrived with excellent spring form. His only problem was that he seemed a little bit less explosive than when he's at his absolute best--maybe related to him being leaner than normal at the start of the season?

Still, Boonen was exceptional. Cancellara was without peers, but Boonen was also peerless as the next-best rider in early April. For me, Flanders was the race of the year because we saw the two best riders truly butting heads and because Boonen refused to give up. By contrast, Roubaix was a disappointment as Cancellara was simply not tested the way he was at Flanders. I don't blame Boonen for Roubaix, though; I blame the riders and teams who thought it was "tactically astute" to sit in while Cancellara had a 15-20 second gap. A podium finish at Roubaix should be a mark of honor, but last year the bottom two steps were occupied by losers. Not losers categorically (I realize they are great riders), but men who rode like losers on the day and who don't deserve the respect that accompanies most Roubaix podium finishes.
 
Oct 26, 2010
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ergmonkey said:
... By contrast, Roubaix was a disappointment as Cancellara was simply not tested the way he was at Flanders. I don't blame Boonen for Roubaix, though; I blame the riders and teams who thought it was "tactically astute" to sit in while Cancellara had a 15-20 second gap. A podium finish at Roubaix should be a mark of honor, but last year the bottom two steps were occupied by losers. Not losers categorically (I realize they are great riders), but men who rode like losers on the day and who don't deserve the respect that accompanies most Roubaix podium finishes.
wow, I wish I had posted it like that!
 

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