Tadej Pogačar discussion thread

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I'm not saying he isn't talented, but the peloton in the Tour de l'Avenir are unknown riders. At the U23 World Championships, he couldn't keep up with the best, but 5 months later, after he joined UAE, he suddenly starts beating the best. I'm not buying it.
Well… it's literally called the Race of the Future! Those riders tend to not, you know, remain unknown. Bernal, Quintana, Chaves, Marc Soler, Lopez, Barguil… they've all won it. And that's just within this decade…

As for Lunigiana, well... Evenepoel. You heard about him? He's won it!
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Nothing special as a U-23 rider.
I stopped treating it seriously here. How can winning Tour de l'Avenir and two other stage races at 19 and finishing top5 in a race with WT teams like Tour of Slovenia at 18 be called "nothing specail as a U-23 rider" ? Where the hell an U-23 stage racer is supposed to prove himself if Tour de l'Avenir has a peloton of"unknown riders"? And how being unable to keep up with the best in U-23 WC (he still finished 7th) undermines anything? It's like exceptional stage racers like Froome and Contador were always shining in one-day races and at 19 you are supposed to display levels of consistency not even a prime Valverde can match?
I'm sitting here waiting until the strava file from yesterday gets uploaded.

I don't actually expect crazy outputs, it's more that I think everyone was completely dead. Basically Finestre light but with much easier climbs and hence smaller gaps.
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Nothing special in U23:
  • 12th at EC on the road
  • 16th at EC ITT
  • 6th at National Championships on the road at, wait for it, more than 7 minutes
  • 13 th at the Tour of Croatia
  • 13 th at Flèche du Sud
Is this so exceptional? Are these supposed to be the results of a rider that will blow everyone away one year later in arguably one of the hardest grand tours in the past few years?
Is this supposed to be trolling or what?

Did you read this fragment:
and at 19 you are supposed to display levels of consistency not even a prime Valverde can match?
Searching for the worst results you can prove that any rider is nothing special. This is road cycling, a highly circumstancial sport where nobody gets it right in every single race he participates in.
"WTF, Bernal was 25th at National Championships, wait for it, more than 12 minutes behind the winner. How is this guy winning TdF?"

What's remarkable is that you take a 19 years old rider, search for his least impressive results and the worst you find is still top20. That speaks volumes about his talent.
I don't feel it's fair, to start accusing Pogačar in such way. A lot of young riders emerged lately, achieving some good results. A lot of established champions are not all that young anymore, generation is inevitability changing. Whoever will come next, it is fair to expect, they will perform great. In addition, due to great results by Roglič, in the past couple of years, that for sure gave Pogačar an additional self-esteem, it can be done.
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Interesting comment by Contador on Eurosport talking about the similar trajectory between Bernal and Pogacar, Tour de l'Avenir in the last U23 year, then Tour of California in the first professional year and predicting that he might also will the Tour next year in his second season.

I don't think it will be easy because Bernal did the Tour last year and has a stronger structure around him, Emirates will have people like Gaviria and Richeze in the Tour, but after the huge level he showed in this Vuelta I don't think its impossible particularly if there isn't a TTT or crazy high mountains.
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Obviously the best results are more representative for his true level than his worst results, you don't obtain good results by accident.

The guy climbed with WT climbers at 18 years old in his home Tour and won the Tour de l'Avenir. This should really render all discussion of whether or not he was impressive before turning pro moot.
I said his overall results as U-23 were nothing special. If you would look at his entire season instead of picking his best result, you would draw different conclusions. I don't dispute his talent, but I see a huge gap between 2018 and 2019. You should remember that this performance in the Vuelta is exceptional, maybe the most exceptional performance in Grand Tour by a 20-year old rider ever.
What kind of flawed logic is this? Of course a rider who excels as a climber and in stage races is gonna have unimpressive results in races that dont fit their characteristics. His overall season as an u23 was very, very good winning two of the major stage races in his age group.

Do you believe Bernal’s 24th overall in Okola Slovenska, 70th place in Copa Bernocchi or 46th place in Copa Agostini is a valid repræsentation of his level as a climber or gc rider as well?

Please tell me how Pogacar placing 13th overall in Fleche du Sud says anything about his potential as a grand tour rider? (As opposed to l’Avenir and the Peace Race which are, in fact, stage races with a lot of climbing)

You’re entitled to your opinion, sure, but you have yet to provide an argument that actually makes sense and you haven’t responded to a single forum member who has given a counter example to your claims.
Hopefully they aim for the Giro with him next year as the tough stages are where he seems to thrive the most and he is as good as anyone in the world in cold and wet conditions which is a frequent hazard when hitting the high mountains of the Alps and Dolomites in early May.

UAE will need to back him up a lot better now that he will have a target on his back from other teams when he tries to attack as they were virtually nonexistent in helping him out making his ride through the 3 weeks even more impressive.
I've watched again the final part of stage 20. His performance was out of this World. I still can't believe what I saw. He didn't lose any time to the best GC riders on the last climb (maybe max 5 seconds to Valverde and Majka) despite being on the attack for more than 30km. Phenomenal ride and phenomenal Vuelta for him.
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This is the PRR sub forum, not the clinic. I'm quite surprised by the brazen use of clinic references here in the Professional Road Racing forum, where there's zero tolerance policy in place for doping talk outside of the clinic. What surprises me the most is that I'm quite certain you all know the rule very well but talked doping in the PRR anyway.
It's his 21th birthday today! :)

Still young for a professional cyclist.

Let's see if he can establish himself on the big scene next season and not just spend it learning the ropes of pro cycling. Perhaps he can even get a chance to ride for a result for himself in a one-week race or two.

Maybe a Grand Tour debut could even be in the cards, but then again, riding Grand Tours before the age of 22 is not that common and if they let him start the Vuelta (which would be the most realistic option for various reasons), they will certainly pull him out midway or after two weeks to prevent him from going too deeply for too long a period of time.

Oh, wait...