Rate the 2019 Vuelta

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Rate the 2019 Vuelta

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    Votes: 1 1.2%
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    Votes: 0 0.0%
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    Votes: 0 0.0%
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    Votes: 1 1.2%
  • 5

    Votes: 3 3.5%
  • 6

    Votes: 13 15.3%
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    Votes: 19 22.4%
  • 8

    Votes: 32 37.6%
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    Votes: 12 14.1%
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    Votes: 4 4.7%

  • Total voters
    85
Never been a big Vuelta fan, as it's kind of late in the year and I've moved on to other sports, but this one was great. Really enjoyed it. 8.

Just so many exciting stages, well raced, and nice to see another young talent emerge. Not a Roglič fan but he rode a super solid and mostly smart race. Great racing all 'round. Only downer was lack of suspense after the TT.
 
Only 6.5
Lack of Carapaz (so movistar could not establish their leader until its too late) and Dumoulin (who could be more dangerous to Roglic than the group of lightweight climbers)
Lack of properly designed H.Alt mountain stages in the third week
 
Only 6.5
Lack of Carapaz (so movistar could not establish their leader until its too late) and Dumoulin (who could be more dangerous to Roglic than the group of lightweight climbers)
Lack of properly designed H.Alt mountain stages in the third week
You really think Carapaz would be the sole leader beside Valverde in this kind of form? Also Quintana will hardly acknowledge Carapaz as the leader.
 
You really think Carapaz would be the sole leader beside Valverde in this kind of form? Also Quintana will hardly acknowledge Carapaz as the leader.
Feel Carapaz is basically impossible to judge. He basically maximised his gains beyond expectation on the 2 days he was the strongest, then didn't have to show his hand on the Mortirolo. I don't buy that he could've flown away from everyone everywhere, and rolling ITTs are terrible.

Basically the Giro was the perfect storm for him. I doubt he goes much harder than Roglic/Pog/MAL on the respective climbs and I also doubt he loses less than 2 minutes in the TTs. Obviously in hindsight there is a huge echelons variable but I don't see him winning. And with him riding crits without team permission a Schleck lite performance isn't out of question for me.

We'll see what he does next year presumably in the Giro.
 
All in all I think Simon Yates and Dumoulin are probably the big what ifs here, if Yates hadn't done the Tour. I don't really believe in Nibali for a Vuelta anymore.
That route really would have suited him though. Thing is, I'm still not actually convinced roglic is an absolute gt superpower. He got fourth in last years tour behind two guys who rode the giro the same season and now he won a vuelta with a super weak field. The only gt he rode for the win where he had rivals and where I'm quite certain I can more or less evaluate how strong they were, he peaked too early and didn't look all that strong (in that sense we also don't know yet how much him dropping actually had to do with peaking too early). I think someone like Nibali could have put up quite a fight. Don't know whether he would have beaten him but I doubt roglic could have dominated him.
 
Reactions: 18-Valve. (pithy)
I gave it an 8. La Vuelta is my favorite Grand Tour of the season and for me the very best Grand Tour I've watched was the 2012 Vuelta, so everything is compared to that one. For me the weaker GC field doesn't mean much as it was a highly entertaining and fun race. It would have been nice to have had 1 or 2 more riders in the mix, but we got what we got. Of course it helped that Valverde got a stage win and on the final podium in the rainbow jersey.
 
That route really would have suited him though. Thing is, I'm still not actually convinced roglic is an absolute gt superpower. He got fourth in last years tour behind two guys who rode the giro the same season and now he won a vuelta with a super weak field. The only gt he rode for the win where he had rivals and where I'm quite certain I can more or less evaluate how strong they were, he peaked too early and didn't look all that strong (in that sense we also don't know yet how much him dropping actually had to do with peaking too early). I think someone like Nibali could have put up quite a fight. Don't know whether he would have beaten him but I doubt roglic could have dominated him.
It can simply just be really hard to take a climbing referenc for Roglic. For ITTs I'd put him between Dumoulin and Froome.

For some reason he was just bad in the Alps last year. But he was really strong in Mende and in the Pyrenees.

As for Nibali, I could see him make the winning echelon, and I could see him make the break with Pogacar in the final stage, but I don't think he'd do great in the 6.3W/kg Unipuerto stages.

I actually checked the Strava file from Pog and they went super hard all day.
 
Feel Carapaz is basically impossible to judge. He basically maximised his gains beyond expectation on the 2 days he was the strongest, then didn't have to show his hand on the Mortirolo. I don't buy that he could've flown away from everyone everywhere, and rolling ITTs are terrible.

Basically the Giro was the perfect storm for him. I doubt he goes much harder than Roglic/Pog/MAL on the respective climbs and I also doubt he loses less than 2 minutes in the TTs. Obviously in hindsight there is a huge echelons variable but I don't see him winning. And with him riding crits without team permission a Schleck lite performance isn't out of question for me.

We'll see what he does next year presumably in the Giro.
Agree that Carapaz is difficult to judge. He probably was the strongest at the Giro this year but the mind games between Nibali and Roglic are an asterisk IMO.

I saw it as an excellent opportunist win rather than an outright strength win.
 
Reactions: Red Rick
Agree that Carapaz is difficult to judge. He probably was the strongest at the Giro this year but the mind games between Nibali and Roglic are an asterisk IMO.

I saw it as an excellent opportunist win rather than an outright strength win.
I don't think he was the strongest outright, first four were evenly matched imo. He had the strongest team though, and he had stars aligned for him this time.
 
All this about if Dumoulin had been at the Vuelta it would have been be better
Nay...it would have been 2 IT GC riders ...gaining on the IT and hangin on the mountains...ie more of the same

What the Vuelta needed was a climber who could attack from further out i.e Nibali or Bernal

Quintana tried but he was too tired and MAL tried but he couldn't sustain it
The Vuelta needed a top climber

And all of you celebrating the new world of INEOS v Lotto Jumbo next year at the Tour be careful what you wish for
Roglic & Dumoulin are strong but will get very boring very fast as neither is an attacking climber meanwhile INEOS will be riding the train...... with Carapaz in 3rd or 4th place ...until everyone falls off the back (Yes he will just as Landa did)
Just 2 teams with more controlled racing rather than one
At least they wont make the Vuelta a priority
 
What the Vuelta needed was a climber who could attack from further out i.e Nibali or Bernal
And how exactly Carapaz won the Giro? He attacked 30km to go on stage 14; and that succeeded and payed off.
Where is Carapaz there is fun.
Very small possibility if you ask me. Valverde is icon of the team, and Quintana is well known for not standing even co-leaders, let alone a sole leader (not named Valverde). He even asked from Unzue to bring Carapaz to the Tour as a helper.
Don't think Valverde (or Unzue) would have wanted to shoot himself after two podium spots for the team including 3rd Valverde position. ;)
 
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Now compare Giro and Vuelta routes.
I already did. In the Vuelta rate thread. :p
But still I counted at least 2 stages which were begging for at least semi-range attack.

Just 2 riders more and this race could be even more, more interesting And it remains unclear (at least for me) if they really couldn't ride LV. That was my point. EOS
 
Reactions: Red Rick
I gave this Vuelta an 8.

Positives:
  • GC winner was a first-time GT winner (good for the sport, I think).
  • Nice to see Roglic's redemption after hard final week in the Giro.
  • Plenty of drama, starting with Jumbo's crash on the very first stage (not saying that was good -- I hated it --but it set the stage for Roglic's team having to make up ground due to the unexpected). Then we had Quintana's great (and unexpected) grab of a stage victory in stage 2, and Roglic's fighting back to retake a half minute of time on MAL.
  • Mountain stages started early -- stage 5 already intense. The mountain stages were combative and hard-fought. No single rider was crazy-dominant in the mountains. MAL was willing to animate the action often.
  • Emergence of Pogacar as an elite-level cyclist. His stage wins were fantastic to watch, with the last one on stage 20 being the most amazing.
  • Moviestar drama played out in so many ways, with Valverde ending up in 2nd place overall, Quintana in top 5 and maximizing good fortune/instincts (including the big breakaway to pull back 5 minutes), and Soler being the strongest domestique in the race (chapeau to Sepp Kuss from Jumbo, also). In the end, I think they finished about as well as they could have hoped: multiple stage wins, runner-up on GC, 4th on GC, and a great showing from future leader Soler.
  • Some great stage wins by unexpected champions (e.g., Madrazo, Iturria) as well as wins by current icons (e.g., Gilbert, Valverde) and emerging greats (e.g., Bennett).
Negatives:
  • Some top-level GC talent was missing, including Dumoulin and Carapaz.
  • Could have replaced one of the mid-mountain stages with a true high-mountain stage.
  • Crashes knocked out some fine riders, perhaps more so than usual.
  • The GC battle for the top position was not really close in the final week -- some lack of drama, there -- but it could have been turned on its head in a couple stages, especially stage 17 if Valverde had been in the lead group.
 
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