Riders Complaints About Long, "Hard" Stages

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Are the riders right in wanting to shorten the stage in situations like this?

  • Yes

    Votes: 7 9.0%
  • No

    Votes: 71 91.0%

  • Total voters
    78
Reading a couple of posts in this thread made me go and check if Crostis was ridden in 2011.

or in a more sprintery example, the fail that was the kermesse in Milano in 2009

people like to worship Zomegnan, but he could cave in to riders with the best of them
Yes, cancelling a descent which had seen complaints in the months before the race shortly after a rider had died following a crash on the descent is perfectly comparable to today. I'm not saying Zomegnan never caved but his attitude to cycling was obviously different than that of today's race directors.
 
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Much earlier as in before Thursday, RR? I think there is more to this story and some of the reporting is not clarifying. One report has it due to a bridge and Devil's Elbow says it was due to covid. Then there is the question of whether a complaint was made on Thursday. A commissaire was mentioned in the CN story, but Vegni vehemently denies this point. I would lean to breaking up the perfect poll, but there are just too many holes in the story to cast a vote.
 
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Much earlier as in before Thursday, RR? I think there is more to this story and some of the reporting is not clarifying. One report has it due to a bridge and Devil's Elbow says it was due to covid. Then there is the question of whether a complaint was made on Thursday. A commissaire was mentioned in the CN story, but Vegni vehemently denies this point. I would lean to breaking up the perfect poll, but there are just too many holes in the story to cast a vote.
I remember a stage profile of 258k from earlier. Maybe even a week ago
 
Some of the long GT stages between 2008-2012:
- 2008 Giro
Stage 6 Potenza-Peschici 232 km ( no categrorized climbs but up and down terrain for breakaway )
Stage 19 Legnano-Monte Pora 228 km over Vivione, Presolana and finish in Monte Pora
Stage 20 Rovetto-Tirano 224 km over Gavia, Mortirolo and Aprica

- 2008 Tour
Stage 9 Toulouse-Bagneres de Bigorre 222 km over Peyresourde and Aspin
Stage 15 Embrun-Prato Nevoso 217 km over Agnello ( easier side ) with finish at Prato Nevoso
Stage 18 Embrun-L'Alpe d'Huez 210.5 km over Galibier, Croix de Fer and finish in Alpe d' Huez

- 2008 Vuelta
Stage 8 Barbasso-Naturlandia La Rabassa 224 km over Montllobar, Faidella, Alt de la Rabassa with finish in Naturlandia la Rabassa

- 2009 Giro
Stage 6 Bressanone-Mayrhofen 248 km over Felbertauern, Hochkrimml
Stage 7 Innsbruck-Chiavenna 244 km
Stage 10 Cuneo-Pinerolo 262 km over Moncenisio, Sestriere and Pramartino
Stage 16 Pergola-Monte Petrano 237 km over Monte delle Cesane, Monte Nerone, Monte Catria with finish in Monte Petrano

- 2009 Tour
Stage 7 Barcelona-Andorra Arcalis 224 km over Serra Seca with finish in Arcalis

-2010 Giro
Stage 7 Carrara-Montalcino 222 km over Poggio Civitella and gravel roads ( and rain to make it a mudfest <3 )
Stage 11 Lucera-L'Aquila 262 km over Rionero Sannitico, Roccaraso and Capo di Valle ( wet stage )
Stage 13 Porto Recanati-Cesenatico 223 km over Perticara and Barbotto
Stage 14 Ferrara-Asolo 201 km over Monte Grappa
Stage 15 Mestre-Monte Zoncolan 223 km over Sella Chianzutan, Passo Duron, Passo Valcalda with finish at Zoncolan

-2010 Tour
Stage 9 Morzine-Saint Jean de Maurienne 204.5 km over Colombiere, Aravis, Saisies and Madeleine
Stage 12 Bourg de Peage-Mende 210.5 km over Suc de Montivernoux with finish at Mende

-2011 Giro
Stage 2 Alba-Parma 244 km
Stage 14 Original: Lienz-Monte Zoncolan 210 km over Mauria, Monte Crostis with finish at Monte Zoncolan
Stage 15 Conegliano-Gardeccia( Val di Fassa ) 229 km over Piancavallo, Forcella Cibiana, Giau, Fedaia with finish at Rifugio Gardeccia
Stage 17 Feltre-Tirano 230 km over Tonale and Aprica
Stage 20 Verbania-Sestriere 242 km over Finestre with finish at Sestriere

2011 Tour
Stage 6 Dinan-Lisieux 227 km ( rainy stage )
Stage 12 Cugnaux-Luz Ardiden 211 km over Ancizan, Tourmalet with finish at Luz Ardiden
Stage 18 Pinerolo-Galibier 200.5 km over Agnello, Izoard with finish at Galibier

2012 Giro
Stage 6 Urbino-Porto Sant Elpidio 210 km over many short hills and even some gravel at Passo della Capella
Stage 8 Sulmona-Lago di Laceno 229 km over Colle Molella and earlier climbs in the day
Stage 11 Assisi-Montecatini Terme 255 km
Stage 19 Treviso-Alpe di Pampeago 198 km over Sella di Roa, Passo Manghen, Passo Pampeago, Passo Lavaze with finish at Alpe di Pampeago
Stage 20 Caldes-Passo dello Stelvio 219 km over Tonale, Aprica, Teglio, Mortirolo with finish at Stelvio

2012 Tour
Stage 12 Saint Jean de Maurienne-Annonay Daveziux 226 km over Grand Cucheron and Granier
Stage 18 Blagnac-Brive la Gaillarde 222.5 km

I have one question. What is Demare smoking to make that statement?
 
Supposedly, INEOS and all the Italian wild card teams were the only ones who wanted to race...

Perhaps the Bora rider in the Telegram group voted yes, but Denk (manger) isn't happy about it.

"It is true that yesterday's stage was very tough, with more than 5,800 metres of elevation gain and a climb over the Stelvio, that we had to leave our hotels this morning at 6am and that weather conditions were a bit difficult today. However, it was possible to race today and I think it was unfair to inform race organisers in the morning that there would be a strike. This isn't professional, this isn't the way it should be. There should be a procedure to discuss these issues after the end of the stage, in order to make future improvements, but the strike before the start wasn't correct. We were absolutely ready to race the full stage, as scheduled." – Ralph Denk, Team Manager

The organisation among race organizer, the UCI, the teams and the riders seems to be a total chaos. Perhaps the riders are the weakest link, but they have to organise themself better in my opinion. They should be really happy that ASO and RCS could organise the Grand Tours, otherwise they would be unemployed. They are playing with the fire. They should really try to organise themself in a better way.
 
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Perhaps the Bora rider in the Telegram group voted yes, but Denk (manger) isn't happy about it.

"It is true that yesterday's stage was very tough, with more than 5,800 metres of elevation gain and a climb over the Stelvio, that we had to leave our hotels this morning at 6am and that weather conditions were a bit difficult today. However, it was possible to race today and I think it was unfair to inform race organisers in the morning that there would be a strike. This isn't professional, this isn't the way it should be. There should be a procedure to discuss these issues after the end of the stage, in order to make future improvements, but the strike before the start wasn't correct. We were absolutely ready to race the full stage, as scheduled." – Ralph Denk, Team Manager

The organisation among race organizer, the UCI, the teams and the riders seems to be a total chaos. Perhaps the riders are the weakest link, but they have to organise themself better in my opinion. They should be really happy that ASO and RCS could organise the Grand Tours, otherwise they would be unemployed. They are playing with the fire. They should really try to organise themself in a better way.
Every DS I've heard is blaming the riders.
Which could mean two things:
  • They're lying
  • They have zero authority among their riders
 
Yes, cancelling a descent which had seen complaints in the months before the race shortly after a rider had died following a crash on the descent is perfectly comparable to today. I'm not saying Zomegnan never caved but his attitude to cycling was obviously different than that of today's race directors.
From what I can see, today's response from Vegni and Zomegnan's response after that stage in Milano is exactly the same, 'you get your wish, but no prize money for you'.

So again, I don't really see where the pedestal for Zomegnan comes from, but obviously you are free to disagree.
 
Now to the thread question, the obvious answer is no for a number of reasons that many other posters have thoroughly explained.

At the same time, it is clear to me that a lot of riders feel like longer stages don't have a place in contemporary cycling. It's an aberration to me, but perhaps the most logical thing to do would be to listen to the riders and discuss the issue openly. Cycling is probably the professional sport where athletes are the least represented in places where decisions are taken.

At the end of the day, riders are the reason why anybody else involved in the sport is making money.
So they should probably have more leverage in deciding how this sport is managed. And not in a Telegram chat, where it was reported the decision was made today.
 
Supposedly, INEOS and all the Italian wild card teams were the only ones who wanted to race...

...Until minutes before the race, however, and despite those representations, it appears that most riders were under the impression that the stage would take place as planned.
“We’ve had some epic seven-hour days this week and to have another one in the rain was going to be quite extreme, so everyone got together and made a decision. That’s just what happened,” Clarke said after placing fourth in Asti.
Lol
 
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If nothing else, this does show the riders need a real union to represent them. I wouldn't expect them to ever have a union as strong as MLB players have as it's one of the stronger unions. However, the CPA seems to be a joke.
I personally have never seen a reason for 200 plus KM stages and to me 150 km pan flat stages seem to be useless as well, but there are transition stages that are needed. Now it appears la Vuelta has virtually eliminated 200km plus stages, on the other hand, they love packing as many mountain top finishes as possible into 3 weeks.
As to what happened at the Giro, I have no idea and it appears to be a complete mess.
 

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