The best racers Classics Today

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Jul 16, 2010
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theyoungest said:
Poor Devolder... you win Flanders twice and guys like Haussler and Flecha are rated higher in lists of best cobbled classics riders.

Would he have won those if he wasn't on Boonen's team?

The answer is most probably no. But you're right never the less.
 
Aug 11, 2009
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taiwan said:
It's a duck. Pozzato sucked this year too, and for no clear reason. If we're talking about the current best classics riders, I'm including Haussler.

Yes, I'm aware that it's a photo of a duck, but I thought the photo was still evocative and humorous enough to do the job. Sorry if you were disappointed, and I will now scour the internet in search of a photo of a dog humping a real goose so as to better make the point. Also, I hope you understood that the photo was not meant to imply that Haussler "sucks"; rather, I was joking about the way HH has been f***ed over this year by injuries, illness, and Mark Cavendish.

As for Pippo this year, he was certainly disappointing, too, but I don't know if I'd go so far as to say he "sucked". 10th at Het Nieuwsblad, 4th at Strade Bianche, 4th at E3, and 7th at Roubaix (while at the end of a pretty vicious flu). Definitely not a good enough Classics season to justify his salary, but then again, he's apparently accepted a pay cut and a more incentives-based salary for next year. Hope he turns it around--along with Haussler.
 
Aug 11, 2009
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theyoungest said:
Man, that story's getting old. Race tactics help, but you've got to be able to pull it off.

True that. Besides, we should have our answer about Devolder by next April, anyway, so why BS the discussion now?
 
Jun 9, 2010
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theyoungest said:
Poor Devolder... you win Flanders twice and guys like Haussler and Flecha are rated higher in lists of best cobbled classics riders.

I knew it! I knew that I was missing somebody... Of course Devolder, nice rider but hasn't been in the top level lately...
 
Aug 11, 2009
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roundabout said:
With Devolder it's pretty much 2 wins and not much else while Flecha has 5 podiums i think in Roubaix and the Ronde and generally performs on more than 1 day a year on the cobblestones.

How many great riders would you say have never won their signature event? My personal list includes one: Raymond Poulidor.

I like Flecha a lot and have been waiting for his big win for a long time. I thought the change of scenery at Team Sky might do the job for him--especially after he soloed to the win at Het Nieuwsblad. Time will tell, I guess. Either way, he does deserve a mention, but I'm afraid he is, nonetheless, stuck in George Hincapie territory for the time being.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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ergmonkey said:
How many great riders would you say have never won their signature event? My personal list includes one: Raymond Poulidor.

I like Flecha a lot and have been waiting for his big win for a long time. I thought the change of scenery at Team Sky might do the job for him--especially after he soloed to the win at Het Nieuwsblad. Time will tell, I guess. Either way, he does deserve a mention, but I'm afraid he is, nonetheless, stuck in George Hincapie territory for the time being.

There's Canc and Boonen who bring dominating teams.
If you want to win Flanders or Roubaix you have almost have to go to Quick Step or Saxo.
9 out of the last 10 went to those teams, with Canc and Boonen taking 6 between them.
 
Jul 16, 2010
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theyoungest said:
Man, that story's getting old. Race tactics help, but you've got to be able to pull it off.

I was not talking about team tactics per se, but Boonen was forced into the defensive in both those victories.
 
Aug 11, 2009
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ak-zaaf said:
The point is: Same effort, different shirt: Not a chance.

I don't necessarily disagree, but why not wait for April on this one? I'll be rooting for another Boonen/Cancellara showdown. Devolder will have the Belgian champs jersey again and a good enough team behind him to not have much room for excuses if he fails to do the job as team leader. Still, Devolder's two wins were pretty damn solid, I think. I don't discount them any more than I discount Boonen's '06 win where Pozzato and Bettini practically toyed with the peloton for the first 200-220kms of the race before Boonen went off with Hoste.
 
Libertine Seguros said:
Not one person has mentioned the best hilly classics rider of the last five years. So I guess I have to.

And because it's me, you know who I'm going to say, and you're going to groan, and then the protests will come.

But his record stands for itself.

The one, the only, Alejandro Valverde.

Well, since people are quick to mention Vino I guess it's ok to mention Valverde as well...
 
Aug 11, 2009
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Willy_Voet said:
Can't believe no one mentioned Freire, yet.

Awesome call. Legend at M-SR and Worlds. Been a useful joker for Rabobank at Amstel a few times. Hope he has one more good Worlds in him; having ridden the course, I think the Copenhagen finish suits him perfectly--if he can still find the form at that point.
 
Aug 18, 2009
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ergmonkey said:
I will now scour the internet in search of a photo of a dog humping a real goose so as to better make the point.
Please.
ergmonkey said:
Also, I hope you understood that the photo was not meant to imply that Haussler "sucks"; rather, I was joking about the way HH has been f***ed over this year by injuries, illness, and Mark Cavendish.
OK.
ergmonkey said:
As for Pippo this year... I don't know if I'd go so far as to say he "sucked".
True.
ergmonkey said:
I think the Copenhagen finish suits him perfectly--if he can still find the form at that point.
Surely this year's pretty good for him: selective circuit, uphill sprint... though noone seems to know definitively how tough the course is.
 
Jul 19, 2010
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ergmonkey said:
Boonen's still got more cobbled classics and total classics wins than Cancellara. Great season by Fabian, sure, by I am still looking forward to seeing Tommeke equal RDV at Roubaix. I don't expect Cancellara to beat him to it.

Tommeke might even equal RDV's total record of 11 monuments, second only behind the incomperable Eddy Merckx.
 
Aug 11, 2009
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ak-zaaf said:
There's Canc and Boonen who bring dominating teams.
If you want to win Flanders or Roubaix you have almost have to go to Quick Step or Saxo.
9 out of the last 10 went to those teams, with Canc and Boonen taking 6 between them.

9 out of the last 10 of which event? If you consider Mapei/Domo/Quickstep to be one team (which I think is perfectly reasonable to do), then the non-Riis/Lefevere winners of Flanders are: Ballan, Wesemann, and Van Petegem. At Roubaix: Backstedt and Van Petegem.

So, those two teams have certainly dominated (and really, it's mostly Lefevere who's dominated, with six wins at Flanders and five wins at Roubaix), but it's actually more like 75% of the cobbled classics that have gone to Riis/Lefevere, and some of those wins, I think, still went to a dominant rider (Museeuw '02 in Roubaix, Boonen '06 in Flanders, Cancellara '10 in Roubaix, to name a few). Others, though, might very well have gone to a lucky teammate (Knaven '01 in Roubaix and Devolder '08 in Flanders, maybe).
 
Aug 11, 2009
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Gcraenen said:
Hey Erg
Perhaps you know the answer to the question I posted on the "retro" thread.

Do you mean the question about whether the brothers are still feuding? If so, I'm afraid I don't know. I can only sort of fake my way through written Flemish, and I'm afraid the English and Danish cycling media don't tend to cover the really juicy gossip like that. Hopefully the brothers are playing nice these days, but with cyclocross and road, it can sometimes be a bit like oil and water...
 
Jun 9, 2010
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Willy_Voet said:
Can't believe no one mentioned Freire, yet.

OMG You are soooo RIGHT!!!! I'm so embarrased about it... how in the world we forget Freire!? Oscar Freire a living legend! and still has gas for more years!

The ninja type Sprinter!! Niinnnjaaa... Ninnnnjaa... Sorry I like how it sounds... ninnnnjaaaa! :D

233094990v4_225x225_Front.jpg
 
Jun 16, 2009
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tretow95 said:
Cobbled classics

Cabcellara
Cancellara
Oh and Cancellara

Seriously

Cancellara
Boonen
Flecha
Hushovd
Pozzato

Hilly Ardenes

Gilbert
Cunego
Rodriguez
Evans

In the cobbles I would have Thor ahead of Flecha and Hilly ardennes I would omit Cunego for vino
 
Aug 6, 2009
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ergmonkey said:
9 out of the last 10 of which event? If you consider Mapei/Domo/Quickstep to be one team (which I think is perfectly reasonable to do), then the non-Riis/Lefevere winners of Flanders are: Ballan, Wesemann, and Van Petegem. At Roubaix: Backstedt and Van Petegem.
The 10 last of both of them meaning the last 5 of each:
The only winner from 2006-2010 of either of those races not from Quickstep or Saxo was Alessandro Ballan in the 2007 Ronde.