Sky's classics problems

Sky have pretty much figured out how to win every single stage race they enter, but for some reason there best classics results are winning K-B-K back to back with CJ Sutton and Cav and a Nieuwsblad win with Flecha. Why is that? Is it tactics? Bad Luck? Training? It seems wierd to me that a team so accomplished in one form of the sport can be so atrocious in another.
 
Sep 27, 2011
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MatParker117 said:
Sky have pretty much figured out how to win every single stage race they enter, but for some reason there best classics results are winning K-B-K back to back with CJ Sutton and Cav and a Nieuwsblad win with Flecha. Why is that? Is it tactics? Bad Luck? Training? It seems wierd to me that a team so accomplished in one form of the sport can be so atrocious in another.
Talent, they have no-one to match Boonen or Cancellara.
 
Aug 16, 2011
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2 reasons
1. You can't TTT/Skytrain your way to a classics win.
2. They have people that show the potential to be good in the classics, but they have no 'top' classics riders.
 
MatParker117 said:
Thomas, EBH & Stannard all have the potential but this is the most likely reason. Had Kurt Arvesen talked Spartacus into joining Sky in 2011 we are not having this discussion.
Not if you stupidly put Fabs in Tenerife all Spring.

He would have got smashed.

Thankfully he had enough sense not to sign.

Fabian's tactics are bad enough without adding Sky-classics-ineptitudeness to the mix.
 
Its merely inexperience. They donot know what is required to win. I remember saying the same things about Sky in GTs when Bradley Wiggins failed spectacularly in 2010 and now look at them. Its simply a matter of experience while they tryout different things.
 
Stage races can be won by holding a decent position in the peloton and then smashing out 440+ watts on the final climb as long as you don't blow up. You can prepare for that anywhere where there are good mountains.

Classics are won by reading the race, knowing the parcours, knowing your opposition and preparing for the unexpected. I also think that Sky need to be reminded that they don't have to back up again the next day and ignore their power meters in the classics. You can put out everything you've got and worry about the consequences later.
 
42x16ss said:
Stage races can be won by holding a decent position in the peloton and then smashing out 440+ watts on the final climb as long as you don't blow up. You can prepare for that anywhere where there are good mountains.

Classics are won by reading the race, knowing the parcours, knowing your opposition and preparing for the unexpected. I also think that Sky need to be reminded that they don't have to back up again the next day and ignore their power meters in the classics. You can put out everything you've got and worry about the consequences later.
In stage races other teams will gladly surrender the front of the peloton for most of the race.

In contrast its often one big fight in the classics. Noone gets anything for free.

Also the modern waiting game approach in stage racing is really ideal for Sky.
 
Netserk said:
Because you don't improve your positioning in training camps. It was a bad idea to skip P-N/T-A with the classics team.
And throw away their GC achievements there?
It does look like classics achievement has lower priority than stage race GC achievements for Sky.
 
Dazed and Confused said:
In stage races other teams will gladly surrender the front of the peloton for most of the race.

In contrast its often one big fight in the classics. Noone gets anything for free.

Also the modern waiting game approach in stage racing is really ideal for Sky.
That's it, using their stage race approach is detrimental in the classics. You can't expect to just ride everyone off the wheel in these races.
 
wwabbit said:
And throw away their GC achievements there?
It does look like classics achievement has lower priority than stage race GC achievements for Sky.
Would you blame them? 99% of common people worldwide when they think about cycling they have only the Tour de France in mind, go figure.

How many people worldwide know of, say, Gent-Wevelgem?
 
wwabbit said:
And throw away their GC achievements there?
It does look like classics achievement has lower priority than stage race GC achievements for Sky.
They could mix it up. Have 3 or 4 riders from the classics team in each race. That shouldn't really weaken their line-up that much.
 
Jan 3, 2011
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MatParker117 said:
Sky have pretty much figured out how to win every single stage race they enter, but for some reason there best classics results are winning K-B-K back to back with CJ Sutton and Cav and a Nieuwsblad win with Flecha. Why is that? Is it tactics? Bad Luck? Training? It seems wierd to me that a team so accomplished in one form of the sport can be so atrocious in another.
Cos relying on the skytrain+TT tactic doesnt work in classics :D

wwabbit said:
And throw away their GC achievements there?
It does look like classics achievement has lower priority than stage race GC achievements for Sky.
Yep, though last year after thee Tour they stated that they would pay more attention to getting a classic win in 2013. I think they could easily have mixed in the classic riders in both TA and PN without jeoperdizing the GC to much.

Pippo_San said:
Would you blame them? 99% of common people worldwide when they think about cycling they have only the Tour de France in mind, go figure.

How many people worldwide know of, say, Gent-Wevelgem?
Oh but alot know of PR and RVV and LBL. But you got a point that especially the new fans from the English speaking world often only think about the Tour.

But there is a saying (cant remember who said it): "The Tour are for tourist, De Ronde is for people who the people who knows about the sport" (I probably got the wording wrong but the essence is correct).

But still, Sky openly stated they wanted to prioritize the Classics more this year (and before we judge them too hard - they still have FW and LBL)
 
Jan 3, 2011
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Pippo_San said:
Would you blame them? 99% of common people worldwide when they think about cycling they have only the Tour de France in mind, go figure.

How many people worldwide know of, say, Gent-Wevelgem?
Oh but alot know of PR and RVV and LBL. But you got a point that especially the new fans from the English speaking world often only think about the Tour.

But there is a saying (cant remember who said it): "The Tour are for tourist, De Ronde is for people who the people who knows about the sport" (I probably got the wording wrong but the essence is correct).

But still, Sky openly stated they wanted to prioritize the Classics more this year (and before we judge them too hard - they still have FW and LBL)
 
Jun 2, 2010
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Sky is team made to win Tour de France.
Which is very different to winning classic races.
That is all.
 
Using the same strategy for the classics as for the Tour et al has always bewildered me. I get the idea of skipping some races to optimally prepare for the Tour (also not including clinic reasons, that's another discussion), because in the Tour or Vuelta or wherever there are always a few early stages that are not important and in which you, apart from falls and bad luck, won't lose time in anyway. However, in a classic you need to finish off a job after 250km of explosive riding in a single day. I can't see how you can train optimally for classics without experiencing the race day accelerations, increasing speed in finales and things like that.

It's no coincidence that Henao, coming from Euskal Herria, is their best finisher in a (semi-)classic this season yet.
 
Jul 17, 2012
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Netserk said:
Because you don't improve your positioning in training camps. It was a bad idea to skip P-N/T-A with the classics team.
This. They lack race cunning. I thought it was a very good show in M-SR but they haven't really built on that.

But at the end of the day they lack a world class puncheur that has a chance against Fab/Sagan/Boonen/Gilbert. someone who can go or make the decisive move and then finish it off.
 

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