Question Tadej Pogacar and Mauro Giannetti

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You could already see though that he is very strong now also. He just played it nice for Majka - riding 75% of the pulls in the flatter parts. Not dropping him unless he had to (like on Friday when the group almost caught up).
Yup! I anticipate some folks and cycling publications are getting into circle jerk frenzy over the prospect of him and dominating another Tour. Velonews has already called him cycling's Superman.
Interesting conversation about Pogacar's popularity here (or lack thereof) in the main forum: Teams & Riders - Tadej Pogačar discussion thread | Cyclingnews Forum

I'll post in the clinic though because that's literally my point: a cleanly presented, tightly packaged super performer who explodes onto the scene & smashes everyone with ease no matter the terrain (Strade, the TdF, Lombardia & he almost won Flanders ffs!) is never going to elicit an immediate outpouring of love, support & enthusiasm - not in this sport. How could he? UAE would be tone deaf to imagine their product could become Mr. Popularity when each & everyone of his "super performer" forefathers in the sport had his hand in the Pot belge. Add his boss Gianetti on top & voilà, a hilarious picture which demands suspension of disbelief like a Marvel movie.

Maybe it's unfair on Pogacar but the bottom line is cycling (long before all the revelations about the how & why all its champions performed extraordinary feats was revealed) is a sport which champions overcoming adversity & suffering. Not Dragon Ball Z characters.

It's a sport where the image of Luis Ocaña's 1971 crash is as iconic (more so, perhaps) than any watts demolition of the Alpine & Pyrenean summits by its super performers (& wonder boys). It's not football where a man who score hattricks after hattricks becomes a legend. It demands something more from its champions, aka the aforementioned suffering & human factor which makes it all so relatable. Just my opinion but Pogacar won't be a popular legend until he becomes human. This might be next month, next year, or never. It's not getting loldropped on the Ventoux last year which will make a difference either (despite UAE's spin about Pog 'suffering' on that day), no, Pog needs something like Ullrich's Les Deux Alpes 1998 disaster before 'the people' see him as a real champion.

Ullrich who of course was a super doper (aren't they all to various extents?) but that one sh*t day followed by an attack & win the next day cemented his place as a rider people could support (& this followed through with his rivalry against Armstrong). Lance who for what it's worth 'touched upon' a semblance of popularity himself in the 2003 TdF when he had to work harder to win. For his sake, he should have lost (or even just quit after his 5th win).

Until then, Pog's ultra clean & carefully marketed "look, I'm just super happy to ride my bike with a smile on my face & play rock paper scissors for sh*ts & giggles whilst destroying everyone without a sweat" routine won't get him far anywhere other than among really young audiences who're addicted to record breaking superpowers in all sports. First Indurain was supposed to be the rarest most extraordinary talent ever, then Lance Armstrong was the GOAT, then Contador was even better, then Froome proved 'human evolution' (lololol), Bilharzia (GTFO!) & marginal gains could make a rider destroy the Ventoux like it's a vulgar 4th cat col. Now we have Pog.

That's a lot of supermen in merely 30 years of bike riding.
Well nobody could have foreseen Pogacar evolved in less than a year from a good U23 Promise to going to the pro's by probably increasing his power output by 0.5-0.8W/kg. (going from riding top places in U23 to winning big races... is not a minor evolution in one year).

What i found by surfing (because i don't really follow the U23):
First, we took a look at Tadej’s 2017 season. In pro stage races, he placed 4th in the Istrian Spring Trophy, 3rd in the Tour de Hongarie and 5th in the Tour of Slovenia, won by two-time Tour de France KOM Rafal Majka. He also bossed the U23 scene, with 10th in Giro del Belvedere, 11th in Palio del Recioto, 7th in Piccolo Lombardia, 20th in the Worlds U23 RR, 9th in GP Capodarco and 5th overall in the Carpathian Couriers U23 race and the best young rider jersey. He did all of this as an 18-year-old (except for the Worlds and Lombardia, he had turned 19 by those races).
I don't think it really matters if you are liked or not. As long as you don't win a 6th tour, the french will probably give you some slack. (was the same with Lance Armstrong, Still the only one that has gotten his tour victories ripped despite those before and after him also provably on the same stuff).

The only comfort we have is that he is a much nicer to watch than Froome. Although his pluck of hair sticking out will become a meme as well.
Well nobody could have foreseen Pogacar evolved in less than a year from a good U23 Promise to going to the pro's by probably increasing his power output by 0.5-0.8W/kg. (going from riding top places in U23 to winning big races... is not a minor evolution in one year).
Dr Ferrari called it salto di qualita - a strong improvement in performance of young cyclists at some stage. Obviously we all know what Ferrari was doing but if you analyse performances of the best cyclists in history most of them had a breakthrough season (usually at a young age) when they became much better than earlier. Clinic aside, it's mostly down to physical development and change of training regime, I guess. I would say breakthrough seasons at an older age are more suspicious.
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