Race thread: Olympics 2020/21 Tokyo, Men's Road Race, 234k

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Maybe a way for two favourites (in this case Van Aert and Pogacar) to handle a situation like the one 30 kilometers from the finish line would be to join forces and make a coordinated attack. We've seen Van Aert do this with van der Poel in other situations. By attacking together, they can prevent having to close down the inevitable series of attacks from all the others, while still being a strong duo that can keep a gap to the pursuers.

The second best thing would be to go alone.

If the top favourites decide on just closing everything down within the last 30 kilometers, there will always be a very big risk of running out of fuel and not being able to respond to one of the attacks.
Pogacar would not collaborate, especially with van Aert, he was disrupting the chase for his UAE teammate.

And that is one of the interesting things. I get why no one wanted to collaborate (so did van Aert!), but in making it a negative race, they sewered their own changes. For these reasons I am glad Carapaz won (daring) and I am glad van Aert still got second ... a bit of a screw you to the rest. Woods should have used more tactical sense ... he burned at least three big matches on extended attacks (one was downhill ffs) and was really looking to go solo, but he is not a strong enough TT'ist to go solo and he should figure that out by now. He would have been reallllllly wise to try to go with van Aert. He might (highly unlikely, but might) have been able to do something similar to Carapaz on a late small rise, but even if he wasn't, if they stayed away he would have had a medal, which is a lot better than 5th. The mental math for a number of folks was actually easy - go in a break with someone who will likely outsprint you, but you have a small shot and your worst case is a medal, or gamble someone does that work for you and you are almost guaranteed to lose out.

A lot of people were pretty cooked and had cooked racer brains.
 
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my takes (fwiw):

  1. WvA is a monster simply amazing to watch and (arguably?) the very strongest rider out there.
  2. Carapaz showed unbelievable tactical sense (and strength!).
  3. TDF riders were absolutely dominant -- wtf!? seriously all these riders who said that the giro and not riding the TDF was the best prep!? I thought this thing was a science?
  4. The benefit of smaller teams - much more exciting and unpredictable racing.
  5. Having said that, it is quite stunning how many riders ended up together in front -- the differences appear to be fairly minimal at the top.
  6. remco needs to be quiet for a while and focus simply on getting better (again?). he is unable to stick with mcnulty, adam yates or schachman right now -- which would have been simply unheard of in 2020 (or even San Sebastian 2019 when he held off a pack of riders only just coming out of the TDF!). i have posted more on this subject in his thread. but he is honestly starting to grate (even an admitted fan) and inching closer to sounding like froome -- talking up how well he is going/recovering and then being dropped by riders he has hammered in the past. just shut up and work on getting better (again).
 
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Yep, 7+ had a totally uninterrupted, ad free, commentary free, Liggett free stream. Just set yourself a free account and you're away. <snip>
Cheers! I was using 7+ but my feed had the Kiwi-sounding commentary and ads. I'll have to hunt around next time!



Rhys Darby is a Kiwi comedian. Google Flight of the Conchords if you want an example.
Aha, quality act - I've only heard them sing, not speak!
 
In regards to the Australian commentary I didn't particularly mind Scott and Anna (though she did talk up Porte's chances too much, yet this is fairly common for all Aussie commentators), but obviously would prefer Matt Keenan, and especially Robbie McEwan (for a sprinter he has surprising high knowledge and interest in GC). However, they are with SBS; the Olympics are on channel 7.
I didn't mind Meares either, it's difficult to find unbiased commentary anywhere anyway, at least she's not orgasmic about Porte like some other guys about their favorites. McGrory though....that's way below par, or maybe just yesterday, I hope.
 
Reactions: gregrowlerson
my takes (fwiw):
The benefit of smaller teams - much more exciting and unpredictable racing
Definitely! After the organizers realized that beginning the Tour with seven flat stages is the wrong way of doing things, and that uphill finishes isn't the only way to make races in the mountains exciting, the next step forward would be to reduce the size of the teams. It's so evident that smaller teams means better racing.
 
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_ORty-_4Xg&t=294s


Always enjoy listening to Chris on his analyses. Sometimes he sees angles that I never thought about it.

Having said that, I don't agree with his analysis here. :D. I don't know what makes him think that the Belgian team could have a set of riders at the end of the race to defend attacks. The only one that was capable of that was Remco and He wasn't good. Regardless of his weak attack. I think that was the key for WVA. Nobody was going to help him. Nobody sadly. It always happens and people still gets surprised. LOL. Additionally, the race is very hard to control for any single country. That's why these kind of races are fun and unpredictable.
 
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While Horner's take is much better than LA's, his views can be summarized as follows:
50% knuckleheads and torturing the crap out of rider names
25% How he was the perfect domestique for Cadel and how GC riders and their goals are the most important.
25% How he knows the perfect tactics after the fact even though before the race, it would be impossible to predict which way the race would go.
 
Congratulations to Richard Carapaz, Wout van Aert, Tadej Pogačar and Jan Tratnik for winning an Olympic medal. It was a long and a hard race and all participants and organisers fully deserve all the credit.

My favourite, Roglič, struggled during the whole race. I guess Tour 2021 (injuries) had an effect on Olympics RR too. Hopefully Roglič will be able to do a better job in TT.

Some people say this is not such a big deal in cycling. Winning an Olympic medal.

Boy are they wrong.
 
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While Horner's take is much better than LA's, his views can be summarized as follows:
50% knuckleheads and torturing the crap out of rider names
25% How he was the perfect domestique for Cadel and how GC riders and their goals are the most important.
25% How he knows the perfect tactics after the fact even though before the race, it would be impossible to predict which way the race would go.
What piss take did LA have?
 
While Horner's take is much better than LA's, his views can be summarized as follows:
50% knuckleheads and torturing the crap out of rider names
25% How he was the perfect domestique for Cadel and how GC riders and their goals are the most important.
25% How he knows the perfect tactics after the fact even though before the race, it would be impossible to predict which way the race would go.
I saw his 2006 Tour stage 17 analysis and it was basically this. That he knew Landis would attack far and the course is hard. That he went over it with Evans and told him not to attack if he was in the red. Evans didn’t listen and if he did he could have performed better.
 
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What piss take did LA have?
Ads, Ads and more Ads asking viewers to buy things from companies that he probably has a stake in. 4 old men reminiscing about fantastic cycling 20 years ago. Foolish banter about who is going to beat who in their match-ups. Only Bruyneel take is a little bit worth listening to. So much so its essentially not focused cycling. All of it is good for a few episodes but its gets stale after some time.
Lanterne Rouge Cycling Podcast is better of all three
 
While Horner's take is much better than LA's, his views can be summarized as follows:
50% knuckleheads and torturing the crap out of rider names
25% How he was the perfect domestique for Cadel and how GC riders and their goals are the most important.
25% How he knows the perfect tactics after the fact even though before the race, it would be impossible to predict which way the race would go.
That last 25% is what gets to me. He overrates tactics because it is much easier to talk about what everyone should have done instead of realizing that in a Grant Tour, physical ability almost always is decisive in the GC (High mountain stages + Time Trials).
 
Ads, Ads and more Ads asking viewers to buy things from companies that he probably has a stake in. 4 old men reminiscing about fantastic cycling 20 years ago. Foolish banter about who is going to beat who in their match-ups. Only Bruyneel take is a little bit worth listening to. So much so its essentially not focused cycling. All of it is good for a few episodes but its gets stale after some time.
Lanterne Rouge Cycling Podcast is better of all three
Sounds like Armstrong.

LRCP is good yeah, I enjoy that one.
 
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