Its been a long season, but finally I did manage to get my team on the top5 of the week.Update #26: Sneekes ekes out a win
We've had our final monument of the season, and our second grand tour is winding its way towards a conclusion. I'll have to be a tad briefer than usual this week as I'm on the road, but I'll be back and settled for next week's update, so I promise I'll give these last few weeks the attention they deserve. This week saw another win under 500 points; I'm sure this week with the Giro GC it will be different.
This Week's Top Scorers
Sneekes grabs the top spot this week headlined by two riders who have shown up on various occasions for leading weekly teams this seaon - Van Aert added 170 and Almeida added 197, making this yet another week in which he's gotten more points than his total cost of 112. And, well, it looks like he's lined up for a significant amount more this week. Sneekes also got 72 points from McNulty and 34 from Meurisse, which made the difference as it was tight at the top. Yellow Knight only came in 4 points behind, and has shown up a few times this season in the top with an interesting combo of Sagan and Sam Bennett, who got points this week on top of those of Almeida, Narvaez and McNulty. bminchow has shown up a lot in these standings as well and has the same big 2 riders (and notably potentially for this upcoming week, also has Kelderman).
This Week's High Movers
Rank Team Up/down 1 escartin (+20) 2 ray10 (+18) 3 Yellow Knight (+12) 4 karaev (+11) 5 Mayomaniac (+10) 5 Shawnm4747 (+10) 5 Blues in the bottle (+10)
A different crew on here, with escartin moving up 20 spots thanks to Guess Who (ie WvA) and Oh Yeah He Got Points This Week (Sagan with 110). ray10 was one of the two teams to get the full 280 points from MvdP, and Yellow Knight shows up on both rankings this week.
Green Jersey Competition
Wallenquist gets 18 points on the week and bminchow gets 30 to create some more bunching around 2nd place, but Jakob747's lead here is still not really under threat, although if the last two weeks of the season are only the Vuelta and someone has rare riders that do well there, it could conceivably tighten.
Top 10 Overall
Rank Up/down Team Points 1 (-) 8644 2 (+1) Wallenquist 8457 3 (+1) bminchow 8384 4 (-2) Jakob747 8229 5 (-) Object 8150 6 (-) Nathanptz 8140 7 (+1) Lortnoc 8091 8 (-1) Londonpat 8033 9 (+3) Nyssinator 7946 10 (+3) EvansIsTheBest 7877
BlueRoads only got 190 points this week, whereas Wallenquist and bminchow were in the top 10 of the week, so a bit more is at play at the top of the list, although the top teams are separated by triple digits so it's not neck-in-neck per se. But a lot of points are to be had from the GCs at the 2 GTs still in play, so it will be interesting to see how the season ends. Usually in this game, there's the Vuelta, some pretty clear teams with chances for big points in the Worlds, but then a bit of a wind down with some one-day races, and after Lombardia there's the China race and Japan Cup, which have very few riders participating. Here, the last race of the season is the Vuelta, with big points and big names. Aside from the inherent uncertainty of any race in times of covid, this is shaping up to be pretty open right up until the sudden end.
This is our last real overlap week (presuming Sardinia goes ahead we will have one other small race overlapping the Vuelta), and although the crazy triumvirate of October 25th no longer includes Roubaix, there is still the last week of the Giro, the Vuelta starting on Tuesday, and - try to imagine hearing this sentence in 2015 and believing it would be true - the last one-day race of the year, the WorldTour level Three Days of De Panne.
spreadsheet at dropbox
CEPEDA Jefferson Alexander
RUBIO Einer Augusto
Yates is the most likely to score any points. Oomen has potential to score some points in this race, but he is still slowly coming back. Hope he gets to do his own race. Narvaez has showed great form after the break so far. He is probably here to support Thomas though. Maybe he could get a chance to grab a stage or something, who knows.
The others are young guys, racing their first GT. I consider it a bonus if they are able to do something here.
I dont know why I picked Samitier tbh.
|5||Blues in the bottle||(+22)|
|CHAVES RUBIO Jhoan Esteban|
|CORT NIELSEN Magnus|
|DE LA CRUZ MELGAREJO David|
|SOLER GIMENEZ Marc|
Ok. So the guy who has Giulio Ciccone and Alvaro Hodeg in their top 5 expensive picks should NOT be leading this thing. However, if you like cheering for 50 year old clueless americans, then here is his roster for the Vuelta. If you like people who refer to themselves in the 3rd person, then you'll really be pulling for these guys.
CHAVES RUBIO Jhoan Esteban CORT NIELSEN Magnus DE LA CRUZ MELGAREJO David DONOVAN Mark DUMOULIN Tom FROOME Chris KANTER Max SOLER GIMENEZ Marc TANFIELD Harry
Here's my Vuelta team
PINOT Thibaut, DNS Stage 3
MARTINEZ POVEDA Daniel Felipe, DNS Stage 4
MOHORIC Matej, DNS Stage 3
DUMOULIN Tom, DNS Stage 8
CORT NIELSEN Magnus
ELISSONDE Kenny, DNS Stage 8
It's ok I guess-
7500 points shared between 33 riders gives an average spend of 227 points. 227 at the end of 2019 would place a rider in 300th place. 300th in the current rankings (with last year's rather than current Vuelta points applied) is earned by 127 points. 127 x 33 is 4191. That would indicate 4000 or 4500 as an equivalent budget.
But as I suggested months ago, I think it would be interesting to have a 'go crazy' year with the normal budget. It might render the records of previous years incomparable, but it means that we will have a one off chance to employ rather different selection strategies.
That's a sensible take.Just to frame the debate around next year's budget with a couple numbers, here is a comparaison of the total number of points allocated per year since the beginning of the game:
2020 (YTD) 131099
We are currently at about half what an average year is (roughly 260 000 pts) though the final tally will be higher since the Vuelta isn’t finished yet. That gap probably oversells Covid’s impact on the game as cancellations have disproportionately affected smaller races where CQ teams tend to be underrepresented. I certainly would not advocate slashing the budget in half. We haven’t adjusted the budget despite the point inflation of recent years (so we could argue why adjust it now if we haven’t done it earlier).
On a personal note, I just did the quickest draft I could for a 2021 team and ended up with around 8400pts with a couple guys still racing in Spain and adding to their tally. That’s basically where I end up every year when doing my first draft so there’s no issue getting to 7500 points (not that I think anybody was worried about that). To be fair that number would probably go down a little if I had done a legit first draft including neo pros (haven’t started researching them yet) and included some of them instead of more established riders. On the other hand, there’s very little to go on when picking riders making the jump to the pro ranks this year so that might deter managers from picking cheap unproven talent and that might drive up the price of teams.
A lower budget would bring less variety to the game I feel. There are a few riders that are fascinating options at 7500 points but are going to get squeezed out of almost every team if we do 5000 points budget. Once you start looking at the "must haves", they aren't really cheaper than other years, they are just way better riders. I feel it's important we still have some points left over to differentiate our teams.
I don’t consider myself an expert of the game but I have played it every year since its inception. I have a decent grasp of how much talent I can usually fit in. The amount of talent that you can fit in this year is absurd compared to other years.
I’ve tried to present every argument I could think of on either side of the slash/keep the budget for next year. My personal preference is keep the budget as is. 2020 has been a difficult year, let’s finish it by having some fun and picking a bunch of really good riders and stack up a ton of points in 2021. Heck, someone might even challenge skidmark's legendary 2012 team.