State of the peloton 2022

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Bissegger must be extremely aero, because his incredible TT performances have seldom translated to road races, especially when they involved some climbing (the lone exception being his win from the break in Tour de Suisse).
All the other riders you mention must have had a bad day or are far from their peak, because the power output required to be in the leading group up to the final 500 metres of the stage is nothing to write home about for a WT rider. I'd even argue this wasn't Ganna's best climbing performance of the last couple of weeks if you ask me.
Maybe the weather, heat and wind, did indeed take its toll on all of them... I know, I am really bad with numbers to begin with, but in addition I feel it's always hard to compare numbers because we don't know the real feel of the race, so I look at other riders on the day a lot. Maybe Ganna is simply pretty good in, for instance, heat, in comparison, that could be, or maybe he dealt better with the wind (more likely with his stature). Plapp of course also did pretty well. What does that tell me? I'm not sure.

Of course there have been quite a few surprises already, especially among the teams I would have expected way weaker, like Arkea and Trek. I don't know. Well, you all know I'm no expert. From my intuition I can only say I was astounded.
 
Maybe the weather, heat and wind, did indeed take its toll on all of them... I know, I am really bad with numbers to begin with, but in addition I feel it's always hard to compare numbers because we don't know the real feel of the race, so I look at other riders on the day a lot. Maybe Ganna is simply pretty good in, for instance, heat, in comparison, that could be, or maybe he dealt better with the wind (more likely with his stature). Plapp of course also did pretty well. What does that tell me? I'm not sure.

Of course there have been quite a few surprises already, especially among the teams I would have expected way weaker, like Arkea and Trek. I don't know. Well, you all know I'm no expert. From my intuition I can only say I was astounded.
Ganna has a history of underperforming in the heat, so I doubt it. Climber getting worn out more by the wind is more plausible. From personal experience I also feel that 5% tempogrinders are really different from steeper climbs. Some bigger guys destroy me on those, but if it's around 8% or steeper I drop them like it's nothing. Anyway, that's my layman's take on climbs with lower gradients.
 
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Just looked at Ganna's Strava and almost as I predicted on the previous page... 458 watts/5.3 watts per kg for 45 minutes, according to the weight he has input. World-class watts, but definitely not world-class power to weight, he's just a watt monster and it's just a shallow climb.
 
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Also, regarding Bissegger, his dropping could be explained by being very aero in the TT, which won't translate to doing well here, and also a sub 10 minute effort can have a far larger anaerobic contribution than a 45 minute climb.

Maybe he's very anaerobically inclined and so got dropped on the longer stuff.

Ganna is also good at the shorter stuff, but he could have a larger aerobic contribution, which coupled with his sheer size would explain how he can excel from 4 minutes or so right out to an hour +.
 
Yeah, his climbing in the Tour de la Provence was probably more impressive.
Lower gradient tempogrinders are also different than actually hard climbs and Ganna has always been good on this kind of climbs. Look at him winning from the breakaway on the Montescuro stage of the Giro and at his performances on the Alto Colorado in San Luis.
It's still not in the same league as some of the stuff that Wout has pulled off. If he looses some weight like planned things could look different in a few months, I have to say that...
Sea level watts though
 
UAE really turning up the gas for their riders this season. McNulty, Covi looking insane out of nowhere. Bahrain also with 3 riders in the finale of Omloop and of Kuurne. Same as last season for them...
Bit harsh saying McNulty and Covi is coming out of nowhere.

Both been regarded as great talents.

McNulty was leading Basque Country last year ahead of Roglic and Pog, but cracked on the final stage. He assisted Pog in the Tour and was 6th in the Olympics RR.

Covi had a good season last year. 2nd and 3rd on two stages in the Giro. Two tough stages. He ended the season very strong in the fall. This is his third year as a pro and he is really establishing himself.

For me those just seems like natural progression, because we have seen the talent and results just brewing.

The team as a whole has come out firing on all cylinders and there sure are some questionable people around it, behind the scenes.

They do have one of the biggest budgets and acquired the best talents, so you could see the domination coming in a way.
 
It's still early season but I find UAE's results more convincing than Bahrain's last year. They have deep pockets and a strong roster of developing riders, dodgy staff aside.

IMO UAE underperformed a tiny bit last year, Pogacar excepted. Take away his 12 or so victories and there were not many marquee wins, maybe Dombrowski and Majka's GT stages were the highlights. They were ranked 4th but I suspect the bulk of that was Pogacar's monster season...
 
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I think it's more of an indictment on the side of financial equality amongst cycling teams rather than the doping element in the case of UAE. I'm sure the latter does come into play, let's not be naïve, but they have gone out of their way to hoover up just about every young talented rider through the allure of money.
 
For as long as I've watched racing, the era of Gewiss and Mapei locking down the podium in big classics, ridiculous solos like Landis, and climbing times that no human should be able to obtain was what was known as the bad old days. Sure, we've seen some highly suspicious stuff in the meantime, but it's taken about a year to recreate all the highlights of 15+ years of EPO, with the added bonus of Pogacar and Van Aert in particular being able to do it in almost every subdiscipline. I shudder to think what is next, I fear we haven't reached the darkest days yet.
 
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UAE: Pogacar is on the startlist, we know 100% he wins
Omloop: Van Aert is on the startlist, we know 100% he wins
Strade: Pogacar is on the startlist, we know 90% he wins
Paris-Nice: Roglic is on the startlist, win is done on day 1
Tirreno: Pogacar is on the starlist, we know 100% he wins

The rides are 'fun' and crazy but this is kind of boring.


I think it's more of an indictment on the side of financial equality amongst cycling teams rather than the doping element in the case of UAE. I'm sure the latter does come into play, let's not be naïve, but they have gone out of their way to hoover up just about every young talented rider through the allure of money.
Teams like Ineos, UAE, Bahrain are among the top budgets but Jumbo-Visma's is seemingly barely in the top half of WorldTour teams - https://www.cyclingnews.com/features/2022-team-preview-jumbo-visma/ - so it can't be just money.
 
For as long as I've watched racing, the era of Gewiss and Mapei locking down the podium in big classics, ridiculous solos like Landis, and climbing times that no human should be able to obtain was what was known as the bad old days. Sure, we've seen some highly suspicious stuff in the meantime, but it's taken about a year to recreate all the highlights of 15+ years of EPO, with the added bonus of Pogacar and Van Aert in particular being able to do it in almost every subdiscipline. I shudder to think what is next, I fear we haven't reached the darkest days yet.
The difference this time is that everyone is aware how much cycling lost by fighting the current, while other sports have enjoyed greater riches by going with the flow. I don't expect any major busts the next decade.
 
The difference this time is that everyone is aware how much cycling lost by fighting the current, while other sports have enjoyed greater riches by going with the flow. I don't expect any major busts the next decade.
The world of sport will choose its next sacrificial lamb at some point so that everyone else can pretend the WADA does its job and therefore they must be clean. In the 00s, it was cycling, in the 10s, it was Russia. We'll find out in time but it isn't impossible that cycling is chosen again, as it needs to be big enough that people care but small enough that the commercial interests aren't too big and cycling still fits the bill perfectly.
 
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The world of sport will choose its next sacrificial lamb at some point so that everyone else can pretend the WADA does its job and therefore they must be clean. In the 00s, it was cycling, in the 10s, it was Russia. We'll find out in time but it isn't impossible that cycling is chosen again, as it needs to be big enough that people care but small enough that the commercial interests aren't too big and cycling still fits the bill perfectly.
I pretty much agree particularly about the other big sports. But there another variable in cycling as a European-centered sport. Recall that the many of the biggest PED-related impacts (at least short term) did not come about through WADA or other drug testing but through police investigations or random busts: Festina, Puerto, Aderlass (not a game changer but the last one that comes to mind).

ed. My point being it wasn’t the world of sport selecting sacrificial lambs in those cases. Though with Puerto the mix of sports/politics/national prestige lessened the impact it could have had.
 
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4-5 teams getting nearly all the important wins and seeming to have (an) extra gear compared to everyone else.
I wouldn't mind it nearly as much if everyone was going full Icarus mode and not just a few teams.
4-5? we need to count only the ones that matter. And you know Quick-Step will always do what they do no matter what. They have been doing it throughout the years. So they don't count.
 
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Is anyone here great at stats and probability? What are the chances that a country of 2.1 million produces 2 of the most dominant riders in pro cycling, at around the same time? I live in an area of 14 million, with a bigger racing scene than Slovenia and we've only produced 4 or 5 World Tour riders in 40 years. Are we just that soft? Is it genetic? Someone help me understand this. I don't tune into racing too often these days, but geez, Paris-Nice and Tirreno, dominated by two Slovenians.
 
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