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Should National Champions be gauranteed a spot at the worlds

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Should national champs automatically get a spot in the worlds

  • No

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Mar 11, 2009
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kurtinsc said:
Obviously most sprinters would opt out of a mountain world championship venue, and many mountain goats would opt out of a sprint world championship...

Yeah right. You think a Quick-Step (Lampre, AG2R, Xacobea) rider will give up his place for a Lotto (Liquigas, Bbox, Caisse) rider who's a better climber?
Sponsors will simply forbid this. It might be a national race but they're still paid by normal companies.

And 180 individual starters? Only 15 have a real shot, 35 others think they have a shot. That leaves us with 130 riders who's services will go to the highest bidder. It's still cycling, egoism at best.

I still believe the current system works fine. The national association appoints someone they trust and he picks the riders he believes will form the best team for a specific type of race.

Apart from the discussion of national teams vs. sponsor teams and the way the number of starting places are divided I think it's fine the way it is.
 
Nov 17, 2009
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ak-zaaf said:
Yeah right. You think a Quick-Step (Lampre, AG2R, Xacobea) rider will give up his place for a Lotto (Liquigas, Bbox, Caisse) rider who's a better climber?
Sponsors will simply forbid this. It might be a national race but they're still paid by normal companies.

And 180 individual starters? Only 15 have a real shot, 35 others think they have a shot. That leaves us with 130 riders who's services will go to the highest bidder. It's still cycling, egoism at best.

I still believe the current system works fine. The national association appoints someone they trust and he picks the riders he believes will form the best team for a specific type of race.

Apart from the discussion of national teams vs. sponsor teams and the way the number of starting places are divided I think it's fine the way it is.

Yes, I think the onest other than those who have any shot at winning would.

Would Devolder give up his spot? Of course not... but he had at least an outside shot of winning the thing. Would Cavendish, Bennati or Farrar have given up their spots this past year? Absolutely they would. Then there are a number of riders who really don't care about the event.

Would Lance ride at Worlds in Australia this year? You can't convince me he would even consider attending. Same goes for someone like Contador or Gesink.

An open field would be interesting. I think a LOT of guys outside of the top 50 would attack very early since that would be their only real chance. That would make the actual competitors in the top 50 either work together to pull them back... or go with them.

I'm not sure how it would work out... I've never seen a pro cycling event where everyone was riding for themself rather then working for one or two teammates. I'd be interested to see what would happen in that scenario.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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kurtinsc said:
Yes, I think the onest other than those who have any shot at winning would.

Would Devolder give up his spot? Of course not... but he had at least an outside shot of winning the thing. Would Cavendish, Bennati or Farrar have given up their spots this past year? Absolutely they would. Then there are a number of riders who really don't care about the event.

Bennati might want to give up his spot, but only for a teammate. You're forgetting that these guys get paid to show off a sponsor name. Liquigas would never let a Lampre rider go if they can have Bennati in an early breakaway that will be on TV for hours.
Riders ride for money, having someone from your country win the worlds is only profitable if you're in the team yourself.
There will be some exemptions, but most riders will go to the worlds if they can. For the event itself, for the tv-time, for the sponsor.


Contador and Lance don't need the worlds, Lance hasn't showed up for years no matter what parcours they lay out.
I'm guessing Gesink will be there in Geelong. He's the main attraction of Rabobank and Rabobank pours millions of euro's into Dutch cycling each year.
 
avanti said:
To depart from the original question I think all competing national teams should have the same number of riders.

Agreed on this, it should go to the old format of national teams taking 10 riders per team but I prefer 8 per team. The problem now is that so many countries exist that hadnt for years(former Soviet States/Yugoslavia etc) that there are far more countries who can take teams plus cycling is developing in many countries so they are sending riders as well.

Take Oz for example, in the 80s they might have had a team of 4-5 riders, now they can easliy send a full team, likewise GB, USA, Germany etc. The blurring of the lines between professional and amateur has also confused things with more pro riders than ever before. If teams were not restricted, the fields would be huge 300+.

My solution would be to allow the Top 20 nations to take 8 riders, and all other countries having a max of 4. There would be about 200 riders in the field which is normal for a WC. Finances also play a role in restricting smaller nations.

On the original question, its a tough one. Yes, perhaps there should be a reward for winning the national championship other than the jersey but surely the majority of national teams are picked on form or suitabilities to certain courses, yes politics does sometimes play a role but overall form is the key factor.

If you are crowned champion in June, there is too big a gap until September to be ensured a place although perhaps if a rider knew their place was assured, they might prepare better for the race. The chicken or the egg.

I would be interested on what Dims opinion was on the non-selection of Ceramica Flaminia(with the Italian champion) for the Giro. That was slightly different as it was a team not selected, but many people felt the Italian champion should have been present at the Giro and it was politics that kept the team out.

If a lot of the top guys pass over the chance to compete in the worlds like a lot of Brits did last year, I dont see any reason why the lesser riders shouldnt go instead if they want.
 
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pmcg76 said:
I would be interested on what Dims opinion was on the non-selection of Ceramica Flaminia(with the Italian champion) for the Giro. That was slightly different as it was a team not selected, but many people felt the Italian champion should have been present at the Giro and it was politics that kept the team out..

unless there is a serious argument not to include them, ie doping issues, or financial irregularities, then i think that the idea that a national champion is not given the opportunity to ride his home tour is outrageous as well..

if the team arent considered good enough then i see no reasons why the rider shouldnt be given the opportunity to appear for a team in the giro for the one race..
 
I voted "Yes". Winning the National Road Race should be qualification enough for a spot in the World Championship Road Race for your nation. If teams are not "selecting" the National Champion based on their skill set compared to the course, or the races are too far apart that's just BS. There are easy solutions to these problems.

1) Try and match the National Road Race to the World Championships. If it's going to be a climber's course at Worlds, why wouldn't it be in the best interest of the Nation to prepare its riders with a route that has a lot of climbing? Then you can't say the winner's skills don't match the course.

2) If the National Champ knows he or she will be guaranteed a spot in Worlds, they at least have a chance to change their race schedule if they choose, or they can deny the right and give the spot to someone else.

The point is that the national champ should have the choice of whether or not to race in the worlds.
 
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US Patent Exploding Cyclist said:
I voted "Yes". Winning the National Road Race should be qualification enough for a spot in the World Championship Road Race for your nation. If teams are not "selecting" the National Champion based on their skill set compared to the course, or the races are too far apart that's just BS. There are easy solutions to these problems.

1) Try and match the National Road Race to the World Championships. If it's going to be a climber's course at Worlds, why wouldn't it be in the best interest of the Nation to prepare its riders with a route that has a lot of climbing? Then you can't say the winner's skills don't match the course.

2) If the National Champ knows he or she will be guaranteed a spot in Worlds, they at least have a chance to change their race schedule if they choose, or they can deny the right and give the spot to someone else.

The point is that the national champ should have the choice of whether or not to race in the worlds.

+1

although you dont really think there are national federations that are that smart do you... the courses all come down to politics as well..
 
Jun 16, 2009
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dimspace said:
(house by the way didnt have much team support if i recall in the brits.. was in a fairly strong breakaway group)

"Was in a fairly strong breakaway group", the crux of the issue.

Yeah the UK couldn't have done worse than the team they selected, but that doesn't meant that it makes sense for every country.

The idea of making the Nationals circuit match the upcoming Worlds is definitely one of those easier on paper than in reality deals. Here at least the choice of Nationals venue is highly politicised and looks fixed (at least for the next few years) in rolling countryside.

The Nationals are the Nationals and the Worlds are the Worlds, maybe the solution is to award the National jersey to the best place finisher from each country at the Worlds.
 
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badboyberty said:
The Nationals are the Nationals and the Worlds are the Worlds, maybe the solution is to award the National jersey to the best place finisher from each country at the Worlds.

You had it with the BOLD

But messed it up with the ITALIC. If the National champ was best placed finisher in the worlds it would completely change the way world championships are raced. No teammate would work for each other. You'd get in the earliest break possible becoz no-one would chase it down. You think the Aussie guys would have sacrificed themselves for Evans and Gerro is they had a national champ jersey at stake?

You had it with the BOLD - the nationals and the nationals, the worlds are the worlds

---

Also, refering to an earlier point about Australia's championships - ours are held in January and it is an Open event. Which basically means that I (a not great cyclist) can enter. Furthermore, you can bring teammates. An article on CN a few weeks back said that the Aussies from Col-HTC are bringing Greipel and Grabsch to help in the nationals??? ze germans aren't gonna help us in the worlds tho...
 

Joey_J

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Definitely the national champ should have the opportunity to go to worlds. It’s a reward for winning the nationals. If he doesn’t want to go fine, but it should be his choice. By not including him on the worlds team, it devalues the nationals.

I live in Austin and know and have ridden/raced with Kristian. I was happy to see him win and am very proud of him. I was disappointed that he wasn’t included on the worlds team
 

Dr. Maserati

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Jun 19, 2009
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Interesting question Dim - my view would be no.

The main difference is that the Nationals and the WC are very different races and in particular the length.
The Nationals are run on a format so that most of the top riders (not just Pro's or Elite) of that nation can participate and have a chance at success.

One interesting point I noticed in checking this is how the length of the race varies from country to country - this of course reflects the pool of talent available.

Last 5 Worlds:
Mendriso 262km. Varese 280km, Stuttgart 267km, Salzburg 265km, Madrid 273km.

Those distances are huge in comparison to what is covered in some of the Nationals.

These are a random list of distances from this years Nationals.
France 248km.
Switzerland 180km.
Belguim 235km.
Germany 238km.
Netherlands 210km.
Britain 160km.
Ireland 168km.
Norway 187km.
Australia 163km.
 
Jun 16, 2009
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Dr. Maserati said:
Interesting question Dim - my view would be no.

The main difference is that the Nationals and the WC are very different races and in particular the length.
The Nationals are run on a format so that most of the top riders (not just Pro's or Elite) of that nation can participate and have a chance at success.

One interesting point I noticed in checking this is how the length of the race varies from country to country - this of course reflects the pool of talent available.

Last 5 Worlds:
Mendriso 262km. Varese 280km, Stuttgart 267km, Salzburg 265km, Madrid 273km.

Those distances are huge in comparison to what is covered in some of the Nationals.

These are a random list of distances from this years Nationals.
France 248km.
Switzerland 180km.
Belguim 235km.
Germany 238km.
Netherlands 210km.
Britain 160km.
Ireland 168km.
Norway 187km.
Australia 163km.

Australia's nationals are on a really hilly demanding course.
 
Jun 16, 2009
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hypothetical... big bunch comes towards the line and some goofball veers from his line and takes out the front half of the bunch.

Do you give a rider who was hanging off the back of bunch an invite to the Worlds just because they were the first person to make it through the chaos?

One, one day race is not a good basis for making a team selection.


MG, I wasn't serious about using the Worlds finishing positions to award National jerseys, just trying to put the infeasibility of some of the suggestions into perspective.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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US Patent Exploding Cyclist said:
I voted "Yes". Winning the National Road Race should be qualification enough for a spot in the World Championship Road Race for your nation. If teams are not "selecting" the National Champion based on their skill set compared to the course, or the races are too far apart that's just BS. There are easy solutions to these problems.

1) Try and match the National Road Race to the World Championships. If it's going to be a climber's course at Worlds, why wouldn't it be in the best interest of the Nation to prepare its riders with a route that has a lot of climbing? Then you can't say the winner's skills don't match the course.
There are countries in the world who have no mountains. Unless you're proposing that the Danish Championship be held in Norway or Sweden any Danish route is a best somewhat hilly. I imagine the Netherlands would have similar problems. Some countries that do have mountains might still have problems picking them for their national Championship because the cause then might not be spectator friendly.
 
May 9, 2009
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Steel4Ever said:
Doesn't matter really as most riders today don't truly care about the World's.

zapata said:
are you serious?

Yes. Quite.

What has the modern WC race become other than riding around for 10 laps with a 2 lap attack ending in a sub-World Class winner and a 50%+ DNF rate?

Even dopeboy himself, the most important cyclist of today and of all time ever, says the World's have diminished in stature, "When they moved it back to October I think it changed its importance on the international calendar.'' He has said in the past that he won't race the WC because he's already won it once...yet he found no problem with racing for the win at the Tour multiple times year-after-year. Seems to me there is no money in racing or winning the WC either (can't slap a 'Motorola' advert on the front of a national jersey now can you?!). Modern era priorities, I guess.

Take a look at the last 20 years of World Championships (1989-2009). There have been five (5) BIG palmare winners: LeMond, Bugno, Museeuw, Boonen, Bettini.
At the time they each won their FIRST WC's, they had amassed among themselves: 0 Tours, 1 Giros, 0 Vueltas, 20 Classics, 5 National Championships, 0 Hour Records, 1 Olympic Gold = 27 victories (5.4 each).

Take a look at a different era, 1950-1970. There were eleven (11) BIG palmare winners: Schotte, Kubler, Coppi, Bobet, Ockers, Van Steenbergen, Baldini, Van Looy, Altig, Adorni, Merckx.
At the time they each won their FIRST WC's, they had amassed among themselves: 5 Tours, 5 Giros, 2 Vueltas, 34 Classics, 22 National Championships, 2 Hour Records, 1 Olympic Gold = 71 victories (6.4 each)

The 'old school era' racers had already won 18.5% more races than the 'modern era' riders at the time they all took their first World Champ jersey. BUT...but the QUALITY of victories is also much greater in the O.S. era, with Grand Tour wins and Hour Records which the modern era WC's palmares are very near completely void.

Seems to me that the Era of Specialization has lead to a lesser quality of racer and races -- eg. the World Championships.