Targets of grand tour riders in 2020

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Polanc is 100% doing the Tour. He is trusted by Pogacar and became close friends. Yet I would love Jan getting his usual free role in the Giro and going for stages / pink jersey as he usually does.

Bystrom and Laengen could very well round-out the line-up in the Tour. Two powerhorse for protecting Pogacar in the flat stages (Laengen also can climb a bit) and give Kristoff a little support if needed.

Bohli does much more sense in the Giro, he climbs worse than Mareckzo so does not make any sense to send him to TdF, where UAE is not going to control flat stages.
I'd say that Laegen climbs really well for a big, 80kg heavy guy, that's why I'd put him on the Tour team, he can help on all terrains. I guess it's gonna be between him an Marcato, who brings more experience for the flat stages.
 
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Do we classify guys like Dombrowski, Formolo, Conti, Polanc... as GC riders? Inclined to say yes, but they could finish 84th as well.
Not if they're all riding on the same team! At a guess, Dombroswki is the most likely to ride for GC at the Giro, Pogacar and Aru at the Tour. The rest will domestique/stage hunt.

What's happened to Sergio Henao? He's almost disappeared since leaving Sky
 
Not if they're all riding on the same team! At a guess, Dombroswki is the most likely to ride for GC at the Giro, Pogacar and Aru at the Tour. The rest will domestique/stage hunt.

What's happened to Sergio Henao? He's almost disappeared since leaving Sky
He hasn't. It just depends on the fans and whether they want to talk about him or not. He is still being considered for the Tour team.
 
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Bora announced their squad for the tour:
Buchmann
Sagan
Mühlberger
Kämna
Schachmann
Pöstlberger
Großschartner
Oss

So Schachmann will also ride the tour as domestique for Buchmann. That also means that he will ride the ardennes classics instead of the giro.
 
Looks like hardly anyone will target the Vuelta. But maybe a lot of teams / riders will nonetheless take aim at it if their Tour / classics plans have not worked out and they are desperate for attention (especially the teams in immediate need of sponsors). Otherwise I'd say it looks like an easy win for any serious rider who wants it.
I am surprised in a normal year when nobody of any great relevance targets the Vuelta, but especially so this year, with what, the entire season being crammed into about three months? The Tour field is crazy stacked; I'd love someone like Porte to target the Vuelta. Probably his only chance of still getting a GT podium.

Can anyone - apart from possibly Quintana - seriously think that they have any chance in France against Ineos and Jumbo?
 
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In addition to Earns1985' post, De Plus has been reported to have stomach problems and elsewhere he is said to have hip issues. Him and Tolhoek ride the Giro in a free role. Foss will also ride the Giro. Will be interesting to see what he can do. He's 23 already.

Also G Martin has confirmed to ride the TDF for GC and looks like he is contemplating the Vuelta as well: https://www.cyclismactu.net/news-tour-france-guillaume-martin-je-vais-jouer-general-91567.html

Dan Martin as well: http://www.stickybottle.com/latest-news/dan-martin-incredibly-motivated-to-start-racing-as-team-sets-return-dates/

Added Alaphilippe, eventhough i don't know if he'll go for GC, it seems strange not to list the 5th of last year's TDF.

EDIT: Konrad also going to the Giro, according to https://www.przegladsportowy.pl/kolarstwo/kolarstwo-szosowe/rafal-majka-w-tour-de-pologne-i-giro-ditalia-to-sa-jego-glowne-cele/jwytdcs

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() between brackets, presumed in a supportive role.

Tour: Bernal, Froome, Thomas, Roglic, Kruijswijk, Dumoulin, Mollema, Pogacar, Higuita, Lopez, Mas, Valverde, Quintana, Uran, (Formolo), Pinot, Bardet, (Aru), Landa, Buchmann, Woods, Zakarin, (Gaudu), Barguil, Porte, (Kämna), (G Bennett), G Martin, D Martin, (Pozzovivo), Alaphilippe, (Poels)

Giro: Nibali, Carapaz, Carthy, Fuglsang, Evenepoel, Knox, Soler, Ciccone, Majka, McNulty, De Plus, Tolhoek, (Foss), Konrad

Vuelta: Valverde, Mas, Pozzovivo, Costa, Aru

Unconfirmed: A Yates, S Yates, Kelderman, CF Hagen, Hart, Sosa, Sivakov, Nieve, O'Connor, Dunbar, Madouas, Martinez, Vlasov, Latour, Oomen...
 
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Bardet has said he does not want to go for GC in the Tour and it sounded convincing to me. What do you think? (Of course he could always end up doing it when things go well in the first part.)
He's a GC man and isn't riding as a domestique. Pogacar apparently also said he wasn't riding for GC. I guess we'll see who is trying to fool the opposition. But both have the abilities to ride for GC, and both have the freedom to do so.
 
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This Tour heavily favors the climbers.

This is one of the first tours that I see a lot of mountains from the beginning. Usually there is a a lot of flat where the climbers are punished and pummeled. This time is the other way around. The make up of the teams should be affected because of this. On top of that you have the pandemic which held up the warming period of a lot of the riders. Some riders need to get up to form rather quickly. Smaller, skinnier, younger, riders are favored IMHO. Riders like Bardet and Pogacar might find themselves ahead from the beginning.
 
This Tour heavily favors the climbers.

This is one of the first tours that I see a lot of mountains from the beginning. Usually there is a a lot of flat where the climbers are punished and pummeled. This time is the other way around. The make up of the teams should be affected because of this. On top of that you have the pandemic which held up the warming period of a lot of the riders. Some riders need to get up to form rather quickly. Smaller, skinnier, younger, riders are favored IMHO. Riders like Bardet and Pogacar might find themselves ahead from the beginning.
True. I think it was Bardets choice of "races that changed my life" or whatever it's called on the main site, that caught my eye. He said how motivated he still was to do what he's doing and so on, but to me he nonetheless sounded like he wanted to get away from it all (the pressure of being a French GC guy, that is), favouring one day races, "just nature and me", thinking of what he'll do after he's done with road cycling... Yeah, maybe I'm over-interpreting. Maybe it does not matter for the Tour, anyway. Also I don't know where, but somewhere it sounded like he really had high hopes for the WC, that that was more his goal this year than the Tour. Oh, I just love to interpret... I don't need facts... Of course the (Tour)route is great for him.
 
If I’m a GC-type rider who is not on Ineos or Jumbo, I think I would publically play-down my actual aspirations and hope to fly a bit under the radar in the early going. Of course, riders as good as Bardet or Pogacar can’t really get under the radar, a’ la Voelkler, but they still may approach the Tour with that mindset.
 
Jumbo-Visma is not yet certain about Dumoulins and Roglic' program at the end of the season. They both might ride the Vuelta as well.
I think we'll see both of them riding the Ardennes classics after the WC, LBL would be interesting with both of them in great shape and FW looks like a good race for Roglic.
I expect to see very few riders doing Tour-Ardennes and the Vuelta, you're gonna hit the wall durning the Vuelta if you try to hold your shape for so long and it's pretty late durning the season.
Maybe those who haven't a new contract before the Vuelta will try it, if bad luck makes you drop out of the gc at the Tour and you end up with great legs at the end you might as well trythe Giro and end the season earlier.
 
I think we'll see both of them riding the Ardennes classics after the WC, LBL would be interesting with both of them in great shape and FW looks like a good race for Roglic.
I expect to see very few riders doing Tour-Ardennes and the Vuelta, you're gonna hit the wall durning the Vuelta if you try to hold your shape for so long and it's pretty late durning the season.
Maybe those who haven't a new contract before the Vuelta will try it, if bad luck makes you drop out of the gc at the Tour and you end up with great legs at the end you might as well trythe Giro and end the season earlier.
One of the team managers was saying something about it not being possible to do Tour, Ardennes, Vuelta. The only rider who is actually saying he is fully planning on doing Tour, Ardennes, Vuelta is Valverde. He may be one of the very few who can actually pull it off. Although he's not racing (or not supposed to be racing) the tour for GC and is supposed to be using the Tour to get ready for all the races that come after it.
 
Not sure to what extent we can consider him a GC-rider, but Karl Fredrik Hagen will ride the Giro this year. After his 8th place in last years Vuelta, I'd say another top 10 would be a success. Especially considering his time trial abilities aren't all that great.
 
() between brackets, presumed in a supportive role.

Tour: Bernal, Froome, Thomas, Roglic, Kruijswijk, Dumoulin, Mollema, Pogacar, Higuita, Lopez, Mas, Valverde, Quintana, Uran, (Formolo), Pinot, Bardet, (Aru), Landa, Buchmann, Woods, Zakarin, (Gaudu), Barguil, Porte, (Kämna), (G Bennett), G Martin, D Martin, (Pozzovivo), Alaphilippe, (Poels)

Giro: Nibali, Carapaz, Carthy, Fuglsang, Evenepoel, Knox, Soler, Ciccone, Majka, McNulty, De Plus, Tolhoek, (Foss), Konrad, CF Hagen

Vuelta: Valverde, Mas, Pozzovivo, Costa, Aru

Unconfirmed: A Yates, S Yates, Kelderman, Hart, Sosa, Sivakov, Nieve, O'Connor, Dunbar, Madouas, Martinez, Vlasov, Latour, Oomen...

Not sure to what extent we can consider him a GC-rider, but Karl Fredrik Hagen will ride the Giro this year. After his 8th place in last years Vuelta, I'd say another top 10 would be a success. Especially considering his time trial abilities aren't all that great.
I would certainly say he's a GC rider. Whether he's really good at it, remains to be seen.

Also, i would have liked Vanhoucke to do the Giro. I know he's not exactly a GC rider, but he seems to have taken a next step earlier this year, with a top 10 in Andalucia GC. In the U23 he was one of the best pure climbers in his age bracket. But not very consistent. Regardless, it's strange that they would send Goossens to the Giro instead of him.
 
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One of the team managers was saying something about it not being possible to do Tour, Ardennes, Vuelta. The only rider who is actually saying he is fully planning on doing Tour, Ardennes, Vuelta is Valverde. He may be one of the very few who can actually pull it off. Although he's not racing (or not supposed to be racing) the tour for GC and is supposed to be using the Tour to get ready for all the races that come after it.
He'd have to go into the TDF well underdone looking to peak in week 3. Otherwise it's just a recipe for burnout
 
He'd have to go into the TDF well underdone looking to peak in week 3. Otherwise it's just a recipe for burnout
As of right now Valverde's calendar is Burgos, Duaphine, National Championships, Tour, Worlds, Fleche Wallone, LBL, Vuelta. According to him the Tour is for training for everything that comes after which are his goals.

Also remember for Valverde his peak and off peak are virtually the same and the team can't tell a difference. He's also shown up at races barely in race shape and still been fine. From what he's said a few times it seems the Worlds and Vuelta are his biggest goals for this strange season and everything else is prep for those goals. He also races more than other GC riders to begin and only some of the helpers have similar number of race days to what he does. From the sounds of it, he's not looking to peak at all at the Tour.

Remember it was only a few years ago he finally found his race limit for a year at 90 race days. He raced 92 that year and then raced 94 the following year and was half joking about the fact that it took him until his mid 30's to finally find his limit for race days in a season.
 
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I can't really understand why isn't Il Lombardia on Valverde's schedule. He had a good opportunity to finally win it but instead will ride the Dauphiné before a Tour in which he supposedly has no GC ambitions...
 
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() between brackets, presumed in a supportive role.

Tour: Bernal, Froome, Thomas, Roglic, Kruijswijk, Dumoulin, Mollema, Pogacar, Higuita, Lopez, Mas, Valverde, Quintana, Uran, (Formolo), Pinot, Bardet, (Aru), Landa, Buchmann, Woods, Zakarin, (Gaudu), Barguil, Porte, (Kämna), (G Bennett), G Martin, D Martin, (Pozzovivo), Alaphilippe, (Poels)

Giro: Nibali, Carapaz, Carthy, Fuglsang, Evenepoel, Knox, Soler, Ciccone, Majka, McNulty, De Plus, Tolhoek, (Foss), Konrad, CF Hagen

Vuelta: Valverde, Mas, Pozzovivo, Costa, Aru

Unconfirmed: A Yates, S Yates, Kelderman, Hart, Sosa, Sivakov, Nieve, O'Connor, Dunbar, Madouas, Martinez, Vlasov, Latour, Oomen...


I would certainly say he's a GC rider. Whether he's really good at it, remains to be seen.

Also, i would have liked Vanhoucke to do the Giro. I know he's not exactly a GC rider, but he seems to have taken a next step earlier this year, with a top 10 in Andalucia GC. In the U23 he was one of the best pure climbers in his age bracket. But not very consistent. Regardless, it's strange that they would send Goossens to the Giro instead of him.

Buchmann is also scheduled for the Vuelta. Don't know if he is targeting GC there as well or just stages.

I think the Vuelta is actually a pretty good fit for Vanhoucke and could see him doing a nice race for stages. As you said, he already showed that he stepped it up and is racing quite well on spanish roads.
 

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