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Mar 18, 2009
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Vinokourov is going to win this Giro because he's tactically astute, has a very strong team, is doped to the gills, and is strong as hell.

Evans in second: smart, strong, clean. Weak team.

Sastre and or Basso in third.
 
Jun 27, 2009
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The Culling in Holland....

At this point, Wiggins, Serpa, Pozzovivo, and Uran are all out of the running.

And add Zandio Moreno Samoilau Petrov Masciarelli Sorensen, Bruseghin and Simoni to the list of victims.

Probably less than 10 contenders left now.
 
Jul 13, 2009
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Wallace said:
Vinokourov is going to win this Giro because he's tactically astute, has a very strong team, is doped to the gills, and is strong as hell.

Evans in second: smart, strong, clean. Weak team.

Sastre and or Basso in third.
Sastre and Vinokourov are smarter riders than Evans. Evans has had a lot of trouble choosing the right moment to attack, while that ability has been a specialty of Vinokourov and particularly Sastre for years.

The best one can say is that Evans as learned to compensate for his innate lack of tactical ability; his victory in Huy showed that he can sometimes attack at the right moment. So while things are getting better, 'smart' is for now not the best word to describe Cadel Evans.
 
Jonathan said:
Sastre and Vinokourov are smarter riders than Evans. Evans has had a lot of trouble choosing the right moment to attack, while that ability has been a specialty of Vinokourov and particularly Sastre for years.

The best one can say is that Evans as learned to compensate for his innate lack of tactical ability; his victory in Huy showed that he can sometimes attack at the right moment. So while things are getting better, 'smart' is for now not the best word to describe Cadel Evans.

I wouldn't call his effort on the Huy an "attack" as it was more a case of a rider that had finally correctly timed his effort on that final climb to the finish.
Contador was in the same position of Evans on the Huy the past 2 years. Strong but mistimed his effort and lost because of it.

His WC win was based on his being in the right place at the right time and being stronger than those in his break. He found himself with a gap, his fellow escapees had made no effort/or couldn't immediatly bridge and Evans made the most of it with a sustained effort/attack. The rest is history.
 
Franklin said:
The more climbing, the worse it will be for the lightweight climbers! This has been proven in many gt's. The "heavier" climbers, TT specialists if you want to call them, have an easier time recovering.

Also, the prologue often shows the final classification. In my eyes the winner will be one of the following, ranked in this order

1. Wiggo
2. Cadel
3. Vino

The more climbing, the better it is for TT specialists? Well, gee whizz, I guess that means 'win the TT, win the race' applies to GTs too. I must have missed Evans beating Contador and Sastre to two GT wins because lots of climbing suits TT specialists. And now that I think about it, Valverde didn't win the Vuelta at all, because heavier riders, TT specialists, recovered better than him! And I definitely recall Simoni, di Luca and Rujano going backwards and being dropped by the larger, more TT-oriented Savoldelli in 2005 because he recovered better than them! Or what about that unforgettable moment when Levi Leipheimer left Joaquím Rodríguez behind on Angliru? And what an amazing moment it was when Menchov beat Sella and Riccò on Passo Fedaia, just one day before Sella and Pellizotti lost a bucketload of time on Kronplatz because they couldn't recover very well because they're lightweight climbers!
 

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Apr 28, 2010
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Libertine Seguros said:
The more climbing, the better it is for TT specialists? Well, gee whizz, I guess that means 'win the TT, win the race' applies to GTs too. I must have missed Evans beating Contador and Sastre to two GT wins because lots of climbing suits TT specialists. And now that I think about it, Valverde didn't win the Vuelta at all, because heavier riders, TT specialists, recovered better than him! And I definitely recall Simoni, di Luca and Rujano going backwards and being dropped by the larger, more TT-oriented Savoldelli in 2005 because he recovered better than them! Or what about that unforgettable moment when Levi Leipheimer left Joaquím Rodríguez behind on Angliru? And what an amazing moment it was when Menchov beat Sella and Riccò on Passo Fedaia, just one day before Sella and Pellizotti lost a bucketload of time on Kronplatz because they couldn't recover very well because they're lightweight climbers!

That would mean that Cancellara will win the TdF anyway, contrary to popular belief ;)
 
Aug 18, 2009
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At the risk of ridicule, I'm posting my top 20 from this point, after stage 3. Whether this be the right thread, I know not. So:

Evans FTW

Top 5 from: Nibali, Sastre, Vinokourov, Basso

Top 10 from: Karpets, Scarponi, Garzelli, Bruzhegin, Pinotti,

Top 20 from: Weening, Gerdemann, Pozzovivo, Tondo, Tiralongo
Cunego, Arroyo, Rodriguez, Larsson, Cioni

Thankyou... thankyou...

If not Evans: Vino.
 
May 26, 2009
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Libertine Seguros said:
The more climbing, the better it is for TT specialists? Well, gee whizz, I guess that means 'win the TT, win the race' applies to GTs too. I must have missed Evans beating Contador and Sastre to two GT wins because lots of climbing suits TT specialists. And now that I think about it, Valverde didn't win the Vuelta at all, because heavier riders, TT specialists, recovered better than him! And I definitely recall Simoni, di Luca and Rujano going backwards and being dropped by the larger, more TT-oriented Savoldelli in 2005 because he recovered better than them! Or what about that unforgettable moment when Levi Leipheimer left Joaquím Rodríguez behind on Angliru? And what an amazing moment it was when Menchov beat Sella and Riccò on Passo Fedaia, just one day before Sella and Pellizotti lost a bucketload of time on Kronplatz because they couldn't recover very well because they're lightweight climbers!

I guess that the undeniable truth that most GT winners also win the TT is a complete coincidence. Whereas the perceived best climber seldom wins is just the weirdest bad luck ever? A Sastre and a Pantani are the exception to the norm. It's tell tale that when they won the other top spots are filled by TT specialists.

Your examples are one day occurrences, whereas a GT spans multiple days.

Look at your own reactions:
- Contador is a TT specialist.
- Sastre is an exception to the norm. Winning a GT without winning a TT is rare indeed. Also, Sastre is hardly an Andy Schleck/Rico type flyer. he is made of sterner stuff.
- Valverde is not a lightweight climber, he is much more powerful.
- In 2005 who did win the GT? Rujano, Di Luca or Simoni? Or was it Salvoldelli? Actually this is exactly the point I'm making!
- Joachim Rodriguez won a GT when? Also, he placed higher than Levi that year?
- Did Menchov, Sella or Ricco win the Giro? Just asking?

Note that I said the "heavier" climbers, I didn't claim every TT specialist is a GT winner. And considering Cancelllara has to compete with TT specialist Contador who is ineeed a better climber, it becomes rather tough for him. However I give him more chances to win a GT than either of the Schlecks unless they severely improve their TT.
 
Jun 18, 2009
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Franklin said:
I guess that the undeniable truth that most GT winners also win the TT is a complete coincidence. Whereas the perceived best climber seldom wins is just the weirdest bad luck ever? A Sastre and a Pantani are the exception to the norm. It's tell tale that when they won the other top spots are filled by TT specialists.

Your examples are one day occurrences, whereas a GT spans multiple days.

Look at your own reactions:
- Contador is a TT specialist.
- Sastre is an exception to the norm. Winning a GT without winning a TT is rare indeed. Also, Sastre is hardly an Andy Schleck/Rico type flyer. he is made of sterner stuff.
- Valverde is not a lightweight climber, he is much more powerful.
- In 2005 who did win the GT? Rujano, Di Luca or Simoni? Or was it Salvoldelli? Actually this is exactly the point I'm making!
- Joachim Rodriguez won a GT when? Also, he placed higher than Levi that year?
- Did Menchov, Sella or Ricco win the Giro? Just asking?

Note that I said the "heavier" climbers, I didn't claim every TT specialist is a GT winner. And considering Cancelllara has to compete with TT specialist Contador who is ineeed a better climber, it becomes rather tough for him. However I give him more chances to win a GT than either of the Schlecks unless they severely improve their TT.

I think the dichotomy between cimber/TTist is confusing things.

All the GT winners place well in the climbs and the ITTs.

We can always find those who TT best, or climb best - or do both well without winning a stage - sometimes the same rider in different GTs will exhibit each characteristic. Look at Contador's wins, for example.

I wouldn't class any GT winner as a 'specialist' because they must do well at both skills. It is a very rare GT winner these days who loses 6 or 10 minutes in either an ITT or a mountain stage.
 
May 26, 2009
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Runitout said:
I think the dichotomy between cimber/TTist is confusing things.

All the GT winners place well in the climbs and the ITTs.

We can always find those who TT best, or climb best - or do both well without winning a stage - sometimes the same rider in different GTs will exhibit each characteristic. Look at Contador's wins, for example.

I wouldn't class any GT winner as a 'specialist' because they must do well at both skills. It is a very rare GT winner these days who loses 6 or 10 minutes in either an ITT or a mountain stage.

True enough :) Still the notion that a more mountainous tour helps the climbers has almost always proven wrong. In fact the course has seldom much influence about who wins, unless it's as bad as the 1984 Giro.

So let me rephrase it: The GC contender with the best TT skills usually wins.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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Franklin said:
True enough :) Still the notion that a more mountainous tour helps the climbers has almost always proven wrong. In fact the course has seldom much influence about who wins, unless it's as bad as the 1984 Giro.

So let me rephrase it: The GC contender with the best TT skills usually wins.

Your assessment is somewhat biased. You only consider whether the best TT win, not whether he is also the best climber. Let's look at it.

2009 Contador was the best climber wins, is also the best TT of the contenders.

2008: Sastre was theb est climber, not the best at TT.

2007: Contador was the best climber, was not the best at TT.

2006: Floyd Landis was best Climber and best TT, Periorro was probably neither, and in any case his win was a special case.

1999-2006: Armstrong was superior to his conmpetitors at both TT and Climbing.

1998: Pantani was the best climber, but not the best at TT.

1997: Ulrich was the best climber and the best at TT.

1996: Riis was the best climber, Ulrich might have been superior at TTs. Might have win overall if he hadn't been working for Riis.

1990-1994: Indurain. clearly the best at TT. might in some cases have been inferior at climbing. These tour had very long TTs.

In other words in order to find a case for TTlist beating climbers you have to go back to 1994 or before. On the other hand several examples of superior climbers beating superior TTlist can be found before then. Most of your examples come from people simply being superior at both TT and climbing. And this is not even considering TT performances by people who are not contenders due to inferior climbing. The fact is that a while good TT is important to winning the Tour, you can win without it. Strong climbing is mandatory.
 
May 26, 2009
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Cerberus said:
In other words in order to find a case for TTlist beating climbers you have to go back to 1994 or before. On the other hand several examples of superior climbers beating superior TTlist can be found before then. Most of your examples come from people simply being superior at both TT and climbing.

That's actually not true considering the likes of Ricco, Piepoli, Rujano, Andy Schleck etc can be seen as better climbers... during one-two days.

Also, Ulrich and Flandis were great climbers, but generally you would say they were building around their TT. Flandis closed the deal in the TT.

Pantani; all of a sudden the guy could TT (even better than the Chicken in 2007 or Sastre), he is quite a special case :). And Marco lost out from LA due to... the TT.

Contador 2007: Well that was an insane TdF where there was no real favourite and where Chicken managed quite powerful TT's. I actually rank this one as a Pantani TdF where the chicken would have won. Note the drug paralel and a climber who out of the blue can crank out good TT's.

I remain adamant in this: Sastre has a problem due to his TT, I remain doubtful he can win another GT. The Schlecks truly need to improve their TT or no GT for either of them.

And about before Indurain, name a TdF winner who didn't build around his TT. I'll help you as it's rare indeed: Delgado and Van Impe. For laughs look at their TT classifications in their best years. A solid TT is what defines a GT specialist, both in the past as in the future. A TT is simply the clearest comparison of strength.

Once again, is it a coincidence that normally a GT winner wins the TT? This is a big hurdle for the lightweight climbers. Sure the GT winner is generally the best all round climber, but that is exactly the point here: The light climbers are not winning, they are not stable enough. Squeezing more mountains in won't change that a bit.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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Franklin said:
That's actually not true considering the likes of Ricco, Piepoli, Rujano, Andy Schleck etc can be seen as better climbers... during one-two days.
Several problems with that logic. First of all Contador isn't any bigger than for example Andy Schleck. Wikipedia has him at 4 kiloes lighter, their team webpages has him 5 kiloes lighter. I don't know exactly what makes him a better TT'er than Schelck, but it might just come down to a bigger motor and better aero posture, it's not because he's bigger.

Secondly Contador hasn't targeted 1-day races much so saying he's an inferior 1-day climber isn't really valid. In Rujano's case I don't even think that he has any decent 1-day results.

Thirdly the Climbs in one-day races are different from the climbs in GTs. They're much shorter. You can't assume that 1-day climbing is the same as GT climbing. Also I think that the pure one-day races are frequently bigger than the GT riders.
Franklin said:
Also, Ulrich and Flandis were great climbers, but generally you would say they were building around their TT. Flandis closed the deal in the TT.
Contador on the other hand is IMO a climber who can TT, not the other way around. As for Armstrong he was a good one day rider in the hilly classics before he could TT or climb real mountains.

Franklin said:
Pantani; all of a sudden the guy could TT (even better than the Chicken in 2007 or Sastre), he is quite a special case :).
He could TT, but not as well as Ulrich, he won on the mountains.
Franklin said:
And Marco lost out from LA due to... the TT.
Not quite true, the only one of the Armstrong Tours Pantani rode was 2000, and he dropped out due to stomach problems.

Franklin said:
Contador 2007: Well that was an insane TdF where there was no real favourite and where Chicken managed quite powerful TT's. I actually rank this one as a Pantani TdF where the chicken would have won. Note the drug paralel and a climber who out of the blue can crank out good TT's.
good, but not great, the fact remains that neither Rasmussen nor Contador were the strongest TTlist in that Tour. Even if you only count the contenders.

Franklin said:
I remain adamant in this: Sastre has a problem due to his TT, I remain doubtful he can win another GT. The Schlecks truly need to improve their TT or no GT for either of them.
Andy Schleck could probably win any GT that Contador didn't contend.

Franklin said:
And about before Indurain, name a TdF winner who didn't build around his TT. I'll help you as it's rare indeed: Delgado and Van Impe. For laughs look at their TT classifications in their best years. A solid TT is what defines a GT specialist, both in the past as in the future. A TT is simply the clearest comparison of strength.
I'm not old enough to remember any Tour winner before Indurain and the Internet has comparatively little info on older Tours.


Franklin said:
Once again, is it a coincidence that normally a GT winner wins the TT?
Coincidence? No, a strong TT helps, but strong climbing is an absolute requirement. A strong Climber with a weak TT (sastre or Schleck for example) is a contender and can sometimes even win a GT. A strong TTlist with weak climbing (say Cancellara) is not. The winner often wins a TT, but he also often wins a climbing stage and he almost always wins one if you sift away the non-contenders.

Franklin said:
This is a big hurdle for the lightweight climbers. Sure the GT winner is generally the best all round climber, but that is exactly the point here: The light climbers are not winning, they are not stable enough. Squeezing more mountains in won't change that a bit.
Contador weights 61-62 kiloes according to Wikipedia and Astana's homepage and he won in 2009. How much lighter than that do you want? Andy Schleck weights 65-67 kiloes and he came in second. The year before Sastre won (60 kiloes) and Evans (68 kiloes) was the runner up. The year before it was Contador and Evans with Rasmussen (59 kiloes) as a (dis)honourable mention. So what do you mean by light climbers? It's clearly not the weight you're refereeing to.

Clearly the best GT riders are the ones that are great at both TT and Climbing, but if you have to choose climbing is clearly the most important.
 
May 26, 2009
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Cerberus said:
it might just come down to a bigger motor

no really? Jee thats really not the point which is proven by history time and time again^^


One-two good days in a GT ofc... why would we even discuss one day courses?

Contador on the other hand is IMO a climber who can TT, not the other way around. As for Armstrong he was a good one day rider in the hilly classics before he could TT or climb real mountains.
As an amateur he was known as TT specialist. In fact his first years as a pro (before his operation) I also knew him as TT specialist.

Armstrong not only won TT's as a pro (pre-ferrari), but also was a Triathlete.


Andy Schleck could probably win any GT that Contador didn't contend.

Proof is in the pudding. So far he has to show this.


Coincidence? No, a strong TT helps, but strong climbing is an absolute requirement. A strong Climber with a weak TT (sastre or Schleck for example) is a contender and can sometimes even win a GT. A strong TTlist with weak climbing (say Cancellara) is not. The winner often wins a TT, but he also often wins a climbing stage and he almost always wins one if you sift away the non-contenders.

Look up Moser ^^


Contador weights 61-62 kiloes according to Wikipedia and Astana's homepage and he won in 2009. How much lighter than that do you want? Andy Schleck weights 65-67 kiloes and he came in second. The year before Sastre won (60 kiloes) and Evans (68 kiloes) was the runner up. The year before it was Contador and Evans with Rasmussen (59 kiloes) as a (dis)honourable mention. So what do you mean by light climbers? It's clearly not the weight you're refereeing to.

Engine, strength, recovery. Contrary to nimble explosive riders (Ricco, Schleck etc)

Clearly the best GT riders are the ones that are great at both TT and Climbing, but if you have to choose climbing is clearly the most important.

I sure don't want to argue this further, just look at the statistics and wonder why it's usually not the nimble explosive guy.

And if you then start to wonder why Armstrong is the prime example of the one who is both... well, that is what raised a lot of eyebrows(note even LA won more TT's than anything else). And it's what causing raised eyebrows towards AC as well.

And please don't pile Rominger, Ulrich and Landis on the archetypical climber mold. Those are diesel engines who are very good in one speed climbing. The typical climber which tend to loose are the Rujano's, Schleckettes, Ricco's.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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Franklin said:
Engine, strength, recovery. Contrary to nimble explosive riders (Ricco, Schleck etc)

I sure don't want to argue this further, just look at the statistics and wonder why it's usually not the nimble explosive guy.
Well that certainly does make the discussion pointless. You've essentially made you argument circular. If you define a light climber not as someone who is light and good at climbing (like say Contador) but rather as someone who has inferior engine strength and recovery then of cause "light climbers" can't win GTs. If Schleck or Ricco ever wins a GT you can simply acknowledge that they also possess a good engine, nice strength and recovery (which they do or they wouldn't do as well in GT's as they have) and insist you're still right. So yes, if we define TTlist as the people who ahve the necessary skills to winn GT's and climbers as those who don't then you are in fact perfectly right that TTlist will always beat climbers. Congrats. :rolleyes:
 
Jul 29, 2009
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Franklin said:
I remain adamant in this: Sastre has a problem due to his TT, I remain doubtful he can win another GT.

You have to figure that Sastre actually has a pretty good shot at this year's Giro, even if he is already off the pace. Two TTs to go, one of them straight uphill, which will likely work in his favor, and the final stage is only 15.3km. Granted: his team helped him with a strong showing today, but the lion's share of the time-trialing is behind him and you have to think he's one MTF away from claiming the lead if everything aligns correctly.
 
Jun 22, 2009
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Steampunk said:
You have to figure that Sastre actually has a pretty good shot at this year's Giro, even if he is already off the pace. Two TTs to go, one of them straight uphill, which will likely work in his favor, and the final stage is only 15.3km. Granted: his team helped him with a strong showing today, but the lion's share of the time-trialing is behind him and you have to think he's one MTF away from claiming the lead if everything aligns correctly.

yup. plus the final itt isn't for the specialists. Whoever is in form will do well, and if it is sastre, he will limit his losses their no problem.

I hope he wins :)
 
May 26, 2009
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Cerberus said:
Well that certainly does make the discussion pointless. You've essentially made you argument circular. If you define a light climber not as someone who is light and good at climbing (like say Contador) but rather as someone who has inferior engine strength and recovery then of cause "light climbers" can't win GTs. If Schleck or Ricco ever wins a GT you can simply acknowledge that they also possess a good engine, nice strength and recovery (which they do or they wouldn't do as well in GT's as they have) and insist you're still right. So yes, if we define TTlist as the people who ahve the necessary skills to winn GT's and climbers as those who don't then you are in fact perfectly right that TTlist will always beat climbers. Congrats. :rolleyes:
LMAO... Good job ignoring Mr. Contadors TT past. God forbid he actually started as a TT talent. No really, his own words where I called himself starting out as TT focussed or his past palmares.. all crazy talk :) And Lance won more TT's than mountain stages *gasp*, a crazy crazy coincidence.

Indeed the Mayo's, the Piepoli's, the flitty guys who had one-two good days are the ones dominating the GT. Uhm no, actually statistics flat out seem to deny that. But really, who cares about facts ^^

No really... I repeat, The Schleckette type will not win a GT. He wont magically get a TT talent. Whereas Cancelara probably won't win one either... but I say he has a better chance.

Another nice statistic: the majority of mountain stages is won by different riders. The majority of TT's is won by GT winners.

All a coincidence of course;)
 
Jul 29, 2009
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Timmy-loves-Rabo said:
yup. plus the final itt isn't for the specialists. Whoever is in form will do well, and if it is sastre, he will limit his losses their no problem.

I hope he wins :)

Yeah: I wouldn't be sorry.

Looking at the list of contenders, I'd still be most scared of Sastre picking his moment in the final week. Everyone will be tracking Basso and Vino and Evans isn't likely to try to break on his own (and he'll be followed). But what's impressed me about Sastre is that he seems to know when he can leave the pack behind. If he makes a break, no one will follow/keep up. If I was a betting man, I'd wager he'll lie low, but has the Zoncolan circled on his calendar (maybe Mortirolo—the Zoncolan has the added benefit of preceding the rest day and the Plan de Corones TT, which might make the rest of the GC contenders all the more nervous...
 
Jun 30, 2009
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Franklin said:
No really... I repeat, The Schleckette type will not win a GT. He wont magically get a TT talent. Whereas Cancelara probably won't win one either... but I say he has a better chance.

Another nice statistic: the majority of mountain stages is won by different riders. The majority of TT's is won by GT winners.

All a coincidence of course;)

2 points.

First, on TTs- The reason "different riders" don't win TTs as often is that there are no breakaways on TT stages. The GC guys don't all softpedal together for the first bit of the TT then hit it hard, everyone is at their maximum for the entire race.

Second- Schleck certainly has a better chance to win a GT over Cancellara, he was second in the tour, as in second best. Fabian was miles from that. I'd Give the edge to Schleck.
 
Jun 18, 2009
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Franklin said:
No really... I repeat, The Schleckette type will not win a GT. He wont magically get a TT talent. Whereas Cancelara probably won't win one either... but I say he has a better chance.

Heras won 4, make that 3, GTs. He also 'magically' found TT talent along the way.

As I think I said before, I think this entire argument is contrived. Depending on the right preparation, flatland carthorses can become mountain goats, and goats can impersonate Francesco Moser. But you have to do well in both climbs and ITTs to win a GT.

I have no idea what that means for this year's Giro, as I can't tell whether we are looking at the Sastre who attacked on the Col de Romme last year, or the Sastre who attacked on the Alpe the year before. Same with Basso - are we getting version 1.0 (Fassa Basso), 1.2 (UFO Basso) or 2.1 (Limpet Basso)?
 
Franklin said:
No really... I repeat, The Schleckette type will not win a GT. He wont magically get a TT talent. Whereas Cancelara probably won't win one either... but I say he has a better chance.

Wow. Delusional.

If A. Schleck were riding the Giro right now then he would be the favorite to win. Cancellara's best chance of winning a GT was last year's joke of a TdF. Don't expect another route like that during the rest of Cancellara's career.
 
May 26, 2009
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BroDeal said:
Wow. Delusional.

If A. Schleck were riding the Giro right now then he would be the favorite to win. Cancellara's best chance of winning a GT was last year's joke of a TdF. Don't expect another route like that during the rest of Cancellara's career.

You can disagree with me, but delusional? I personally don't think Andy Schleck can win a GT. Strangely enough statistics seem to agree that his TT isn't good enough... Sure he became second in a TdF, but winning one is a bit different. But that others rank him among the favorites, why not.. it's just that I don't see it. And yes, I repeat it's the statistic that are making it a hard sell for either one of the Schlecks. Now let's see if he proves me worng^^

I don't think Cancellara will win a GT, but to write him of so easily? I sincerely doubt he can ever beat Alberto (who is younger), that said, Cancellara wouldn't be the first big guy who wins a GT (Mig, Tony and Alex come to mind). I still rank him higher than Andy for winning a GT, however small the chances of either might be.

Also, an "easy" TdF like yesterday also means the climbers (the Ricco's, Schlecks etc) aren't as tired as they would be in a heavier TdF. Case in point is that it never bothered a Hinault, Fignon, Greg or Miguel .. the more mountains, the bigger the difference these guys made. Quite simply because they had more resistance.

Beat Breu is an old example. A prime example of a climber. The only TdF he did well was when the mountain stages were super-short. His own words and those of Peter Winnen: Too much mountains kills us, the big guys just power over the first passes and cut of our legs. Now what do we see in current TdF's in an even more extreme form? The same thing. Just one hispeed run over the first passes, smothering the smaller engines. Then at the end the big one speed climbers crush the opposition. Marked exception is Alberto, who is both resistant and a more true climber.

And before this is getting poohpoohed again, this is similar what the smaller climbers themselves have said. In fact some even rank Lance as a "one-attack, then one hi-speed climber".

But back on track. I'll stick my neck out to the ridicule of everyone: Andy Schleck willl not win a GT.
 
Franklin said:
You can disagree with me, but delusional? I personally don't think Andy Schleck can win a GT. Strangely enough statistics seem to agree that his TT isn't good enough... Sure he became second in a TdF, but winning one is a bit different. But that others rank him among the favorites, why not.. it's just that I don't see it. And yes, I repeat it's the statistic that are making it a hard sell for either one of the Schlecks. Now let's see if he proves me worng^^[/B]

There are more GTs than the Tour with its usual long ITT. Take a look at the GT that is going on right now. Minimal time trialing. That is usual for both the Giro and the Vuelta. Both those races also usually feature more difficult climbing than the Tour. Look at the list of Giro winners over the last ten years. Simoni was never as good of a time trialist as Andy Schleck is today. Savoldelli was never as good of a climber as Schelck is. Garzelli was never as good at either discipline. Schleck already placed second in the Giro when he was much younger.

Schleck's major problem is a fixation on the Tour. That is what might rob him of a career GT victory. He could end up like Evans, spending most of his career trying to win the TdF and failing.

Schleck should have done the Giro this year. The Tour's long time trial this year makes defeating Contador unlikely for him, but he is a class above everybody in this year's Giro with the possible exception of Evans who does not have a team strong enough to protect him.
 

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