Philippe Gilbert Discussion Thread

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I get the impression that most riders are not in absolute top form for MSR as they have bigger goals in the cobbled classics and Ardennes. Alaphillipe this year seemed to tailor his training to be in top form at MSR and it showed compared to the others. So I do think Gilbert has a chance if he is willing to peak for MSR at the expense of other races. I don't necessarily think there will be an internal team rivalry with Alaphillipe as I expect he'll have other goals next year and will not be on quite the same level as he was in this year's race.
 
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cellardoor said:
I get the impression that most riders are not in absolute top form for MSR as they have bigger goals in the cobbled classics and Ardennes. Alaphillipe this year seemed to tailor his training to be in top form at MSR and it showed compared to the others. So I do think Gilbert has a chance if he is willing to peak for MSR at the expense of other races. I don't necessarily think there will be an internal team rivalry with Alaphillipe as I expect he'll have other goals next year and will not be on quite the same level as he was in this year's race.
No classics rider has "bigger goals" than San Remo. But I can see how only a small number of riders would make it a focal point of a season.
 
Dec 6, 2012
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Leinster said:
No classics rider has "bigger goals" than San Remo. But I can see how only a small number of riders would make it a focal point of a season.
How does it work actually, having a biggest goal that's not your focal point?
I see Sanremo to have a more open chance for a less traditional classic rider to win, more traditional bunch sprinters aimed for it surely, than the more specialized classics. Thus, my logic says, with thicker competition, many classic top riders will chose not to focus on it. Only the few best allrounders, top sprinters who can endure hills, and confidently red hot puncheurs will dare have it as a main goal of the season.
 
He must make it his target and give it a real go to win it. If he can drop everyone like Nibali on Poggio and there is only a smaller group behind that can chase... or if can get away after Poggio from a smaller group. They never bringing him back if he gets away on his own. It will be very difficult but it is not that far-fetched. Gilbert was in good form this year in P-N. I dont think it is impossible, but being at your best on a given day is hard to execute with everything that can happen with injuries, sickness or bad luck in the race with a crash or a mechanical. Then the training and races leading up to that race to build form.
 
He could trick Alaphillipe into trying Omloop, E3, Dwars and Tour of Flanders next year in exchange for his co-leader role in Milano-San Remo with Viviani. That is his only chance. He can still defend his Roubaix title of course.

The other option is Gilbert going on Cipressa, with Alaphillipe as the Poggio option and Viviani for the Via Roma sprint. But the chance of such a move succeeding is one in a million.
 
Sanremo is a bit of a strange case cause it's effectively by far the easiest of the major races on the calendar, and therefor it's not really punishing to those who aren't in top condition. Like Valverde and Nibali made the final selection without being near top shape.

It's also not that much of a puncheur race either. The Poggio, however flat, is still a 6 minute climb which in it's own way is longer than most of the Ardennes climbs, although it's not nearly as punishing for heavier riders and the last km is the hardest.
 
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Red Rick said:
Sanremo is a bit of a strange case cause it's effectively by far the easiest of the major races on the calendar, and therefor it's not really punishing to those who aren't in top condition. Like Valverde and Nibali made the final selection without being near top shape.

It's also not that much of a puncheur race either. The Poggio, however flat, is still a 6 minute climb which in it's own way is longer than most of the Ardennes climbs, although it's not nearly as punishing for heavier riders and the last km is the hardest.
There’s a big difference between the Poggio coming at the end of 6.5 hours of sitting in a bunch at 45kmh, versus a Roche aux Faucons or St Nicholas in the suburbs of Liege after 6 hours of up/down action on similar hills or bigger.
 
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Leinster said:
Red Rick said:
Sanremo is a bit of a strange case cause it's effectively by far the easiest of the major races on the calendar, and therefor it's not really punishing to those who aren't in top condition. Like Valverde and Nibali made the final selection without being near top shape.

It's also not that much of a puncheur race either. The Poggio, however flat, is still a 6 minute climb which in it's own way is longer than most of the Ardennes climbs, although it's not nearly as punishing for heavier riders and the last km is the hardest.
There’s a big difference between the Poggio coming at the end of 6.5 hours of sitting in a bunch at 45kmh, versus a Roche aux Faucons or St Nicholas in the suburbs of Liege after 6 hours of up/down action on similar hills or bigger.
Hence me saying it's far more forgiving then any other major race. You just have to have your short efforts on point, the 'being great at high intensity for ages' can wait till later in season.
 
Dec 6, 2012
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The next to win 3 different monuments will be...Dan Martin! I think not, but after Gilbert some may lean even more towards Ala and Jungels rather than Sagan and the likes. With Sanremo being the wild catch among the 2 & 2.
Sagan may quickly silence that thought with some sacrifice though.
 
gunara said:
The next to win 3 different monuments will be...Dan Martin! I think not, but after Gilbert some may lean even more towards Ala and Jungels rather than Sagan and the likes. With Sanremo being the wild catch among the 2 & 2.
Sagan may quickly silence that thought with some sacrifice though.
Sagan is the obvious one, given his record in San Remo. He could go more if the revised Liege finish works out for him. And if Lombardia has a favourable Route for him one of these years...
 
Dec 6, 2012
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[quote="Leinster"
Sagan is the obvious one, given his record in San Remo. He could go more if the revised Liege finish works out for him. And if Lombardia has a favourable Route for him one of these years...[/quote]

For anyone it will likely involve altering usual schedule. For Sagan it may include going back to skipping Roubaix.
 
Jul 17, 2016
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Bardamu said:
VDB44 said:
And there's one other factor I take in consideration:
Boonen is and was a funny and likable guy, loved in the peloton.
Gilbert, Valverde and Bettini also well liked and respected in the peloton.
And then you have Cancellara; a two faced tw*t.
So, no way I put Cancellara above Boonen and Gilbert. :razz:
Hehe, well every sport needs it's villain doesn't it? Felt a bit sad though for Cancellara when I saw him on Belgian tv recently. The guy obviously is not in a good place atm.
Yeah Cancellera might be a ***, but i hold him higher than Boonen for the one simple reason he showed him self as a stronger rider. Mano vs Mano Cancellera was a stronger rider than Boonen in almost every race, with boonen only being faster in a sprint, and probably not by much. I know there palamaras is close, but when I think back i can't help myself from remebering Cancellera as the stronger rider.
 
Frankschleck said:
Bardamu said:
VDB44 said:
And there's one other factor I take in consideration:
Boonen is and was a funny and likable guy, loved in the peloton.
Gilbert, Valverde and Bettini also well liked and respected in the peloton.
And then you have Cancellara; a two faced tw*t.
So, no way I put Cancellara above Boonen and Gilbert. :razz:
Hehe, well every sport needs it's villain doesn't it? Felt a bit sad though for Cancellara when I saw him on Belgian tv recently. The guy obviously is not in a good place atm.
Yeah Cancellera might be a *, but i hold him higher than Boonen for the one simple reason he showed him self as a stronger rider. Mano vs Mano Cancellera was a stronger rider than Boonen in almost every race, with boonen only being faster in a sprint, and probably not by much. I know there palamaras is close, but when I think back i can't help myself from remebering Cancellera as the stronger rider.
Yeah, but in a race often faster rider wins ;)
 
Jul 13, 2016
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Frankschleck said:
Bardamu said:
VDB44 said:
And there's one other factor I take in consideration:
Boonen is and was a funny and likable guy, loved in the peloton.
Gilbert, Valverde and Bettini also well liked and respected in the peloton.
And then you have Cancellara; a two faced tw*t.
So, no way I put Cancellara above Boonen and Gilbert. :razz:
Hehe, well every sport needs it's villain doesn't it? Felt a bit sad though for Cancellara when I saw him on Belgian tv recently. The guy obviously is not in a good place atm.
Yeah Cancellera might be a *, but i hold him higher than Boonen for the one simple reason he showed him self as a stronger rider. Mano vs Mano Cancellera was a stronger rider than Boonen in almost every race, with boonen only being faster in a sprint, and probably not by much. I know there palamaras is close, but when I think back i can't help myself from remebering Cancellera as the stronger rider.
True, Cancellara was the strongest rider by far for a while. I never had that feeling with Boonen, not even in Paris Roubaix 2012. But being able to finish races due to a sprint is worth of praise as well.
 
Apr 12, 2017
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According to Merckx, Gilbert is the best Belgian cyclist since Roger De Vlaeminck. So that puts him at least above Boonen in the ranking.

And you can't argue with Merckx, obviously.
 
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Valanga said:
According to Merckx, Gilbert is the best Belgian cyclist since Roger De Vlaeminck. So that puts him at least above Boonen in the ranking.

And you can't argue with Merckx, obviously.
Yeah, he's like the book of wisdom :lol:
 
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Salvarani said:
Valanga said:
According to Merckx, Gilbert is the best Belgian cyclist since Roger De Vlaeminck. So that puts him at least above Boonen in the ranking.

And you can't argue with Merckx, obviously.
I dont think he is wrong.
Looking at the results, I don't think he is wrong either tbh, altho Boonen certainly was a bigger name more or less throughout his career. But strictly on palmarés its Gilbert IMO, but there goes something more than just palmarés into deciding who the biggest/best cyclist is.
 
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Valv.Piti said:
Salvarani said:
Valanga said:
According to Merckx, Gilbert is the best Belgian cyclist since Roger De Vlaeminck. So that puts him at least above Boonen in the ranking.

And you can't argue with Merckx, obviously.
I dont think he is wrong.
Looking at the results, I don't think he is wrong either tbh, altho Boonen certainly was a bigger name more or less throughout his career. But strictly on palmarés its Gilbert IMO, but there goes something more than just palmarés into deciding who the biggest/best cyclist is.
Yeah, I guess Boonen was more of an "icon" if you will. One of the best cobbles riders ever and a very good sprinter, mainly in the start of his career.

But... Gilbert has proved himself on the cobbles too and winning so many different races outside of that. Different type of races. Classics and semi-classics. Reinventing himself during his career.

Boonen more won the same type of races over and over again. Thats why he is one the best cobbles rider ever. If not the best. + Sprint stages etc.

If the conversation is best cyclist, I would have to say Gilbert though.
 
Don't think there's much between them at all.

And as for the icon thing, that's solely because Gilbert has filled out his palmares super late in his career. He was the Belgian hilly classics #1 to be sure, but only had 1 really great season and only one race he really dominated, and it wasn't one of the biggest ones.
 
Jul 13, 2016
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Red Rick said:
Don't think there's much between them at all.

And as for the icon thing, that's solely because Gilbert has filled out his palmares super late in his career. He was the Belgian hilly classics #1 to be sure, but only had 1 really great season and only one race he really dominated, and it wasn't one of the biggest ones.
Despite Amstel not being a monument, if you dominate that race you're automatically one of the strongest riders in the peloton. It has the best field, better than the cobbled races.
 

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