The Bora - Hansgrohe team thread

It’s about time that Bora - Hansgrohe had a general team thread. Not so long ago they were one of the stronger PCT outfits. Then they joined the WT essentially as a vehicle for Peter Sagan. By 2019, they had become one of the strongest teams in the peloton, even with Sagan having a quiet year by his very high standards. They won more bunch sprints than any other team in 2019, making up the bulk of their 47 wins, but they also have a quality classics team, led by Sagan, and have slowly become competitive at GC riding. Along the way, they’ve taken advantage of their status as by far the biggest Germanophone team to nearly corner the market in German and Austrian talents.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
First up a minor bit of news. Last year they had the luxury problem of having too many top sprinters. This year, with Bennett moving on, they have Ackermann as an out and out bunch sprinter and, of course, Sagan. But while you can’t accomodate two of the fastest guys in the world and Sagan in the same team, a team with a big focus on sprints does need at least three guys. The hierarchy just has to be clear.

Who the third guy will be isn’t obvious. Shane Archbold was more or less the fourth choice fill in guy last year, but he’s gone too. They signed Martin Laas, an Estonian sprinter with some Asia Tour wins. But it seems that at least in the TDU that Erik Baska will be the team sprinter!
 
First up a minor bit of news. Last year they had the luxury problem of having too many top sprinters. This year, with Bennett moving on, they have Ackermann as an out and out bunch sprinter and, of course, Sagan. But while you can’t accomodate two of the fastest guys in the world and Sagan in the same team, a team with a big focus on sprints does need at least three guys. The hierarchy just has to be clear.

Who the third guy will be isn’t obvious. Shane Archbold was more or less the fourth choice fill in guy last year, but he’s gone too. They signed Martin Laas, an Estonian sprinter with some Asia Tour wins. But it seems that at least in the TDU that Erik Baska will be the team sprinter!
Drucker, Selig and Schwarzmann are all fast; the former has more experience actually sprinting, not leading out and once even won a Vuelta stage from a bunch sprint.
 
Reactions: Zinoviev Letter
Yeah, that’s what I mean. They have like five or six riders who would probably like a go at the job. Baska getting first crack at it is a little surprising.
I'd say Baška makes the most sense, especially at a race like Tour Down Under. He has already been sprinting for Bora occasionally, most notably in his home race back in September where he did very well against top competition, and has done good lead-outs in other races. He's also shown his speed in earlier seasons. He's just lacking a bit in the durability department.

He'll be skipping the major classics again this season. It's likely he could be Bora's go-to-guy in the sprints for certain stage races and some smaller one-day races. He's not at all suited to a full Bennett schedule, though. The more durable Drucker will be needed for the classics campaign with Sagan, and I'd say he's not as fast as Baška.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Nov 1, 2018
21
4
1,585
Yeah, that’s what I mean. They have like five or six riders who would probably like a go at the job. Baska getting first crack at it is a little surprising.
There is a room for development with him. He is 25 and signed till the end of 2021.
End speed is there, but needs to improve in positioning and developing some sort of chemistry with a designated lead out. I cant see him surfing wheels like this year all Bora's sprinters more all less did. Bora doesn't have DQS/Jumbo leadout quality so maybe this year for some B/C level races it would be enough.

From others mentioned I would have biggest hope for Drucker who was pretty unlucky last year with crashes, but who has the biggest potential to be Sagan's wing man in the main classics. Maybe after spring he would get some chances to fight for new contract if Baska fails badly. Otherwise I see him as a last leadout man for somebody else like he was for Bennet when healthy last year.

Selig is a part of Ackermann's train so there is that. Plus he was last men standing last year in PR next to Sagan.

I dont really know what to expect from Laas who was biggest suprise signing for me this year.

Of course everthing can change with some crashes or illnesses, but fingers crossed.
 
We don't really now.
If you look at König. He seemed to be sick when coming from Sky, because he didn't really race healthy at any time for Bora. Kennaugh was probably burned out to after leaving Sky.
There is a book about Nerz. He got a eating disorder at Liquigas and Bora didn't really realize it. Thats a thing they did wrong. But the problems started before Bora.
It looks a bit bad for Bora but I think the riders don't get sick directly at Bora. Hopefully they all get well soon at least.
 
I have a real respect on teams that have raised over the years from lower level to a good WT team. Bora belongs there along with Sunweb while teams like Sky/Ineos and GreenEDGE/Orica/Mitchelton were set up to be on the top level instantly.
 
So, regarding team tactics today, i missed most of the final climb initially because i was out eating smoutebollen with my parents. So i just watched the final again and i think Bora could have played this better. With Martinez closing in on Schachmann, with Kämna in his wheel, it should have been obvious that it was either going to be Kämna or Martinez that was going to win. Kämna attacked at the moment that Martinez bridged to Schachmann.

I think Kämna should have either waited for his first attack until Martinez was a bit more wore down, or should have attacked sooner. Should he have attacked when Schachmann was still 100 or 200m ahead he could have bridged to Schachmann with a tiny gap on Martinez, then Schachmann could have emptied himself with Kämna in his wheel (the fact that Schachmann wasn't instantly dropped, shows that he still had something left in the tank even if it wasn't enough to win) trying to cook Martinez and slingshot Kämna up the road.

As it turns out, it would probably not have mattered, considering Martinez was just too strong, but i think either tactic would have given a better chance at success than how they actually played it.
 
Kamna tried to attack Martinez just at the 2km banner, right when the gradient really ramped up. Martinez responded easily. There really wan't a better place to attack him; any earlier would have been too far from the finish, any later would have been on the steep ramp, where drafting mattered a lot less.

Martinez was just stronger than the 2 Bora guys, and sometimes tactics can't overcome legs. Another day, there'll be a flatter finale, or descent, and drafting will matter and the 2 Bora guys will work Martinez over.
 
Kamna tried to attack Martinez just at the 2km banner, right when the gradient really ramped up. Martinez responded easily. There really wan't a better place to attack him; any earlier would have been too far from the finish, any later would have been on the steep ramp, where drafting mattered a lot less.

Martinez was just stronger than the 2 Bora guys, and sometimes tactics can't overcome legs. Another day, there'll be a flatter finale, or descent, and drafting will matter and the 2 Bora guys will work Martinez over.
Like i said, i agree that Martinez was simply too strong and it likely wouldn't have mattered, but i don't agree that there wasn't a better place or time. But hindsight...
 
Sep 27, 2020
35
47
130
Thanks, I am genuinely asking because I have not seen any stage yet. So I am also a quite unaware of Majka's form and Bora's tactics.

I am of course concerned that if Konrad has one bad day and he loses a minute or two, my guess would be he has to work for Majka and can not stay in a protected/free role or even have dual leadership.

I highly doubt that Majka would suddenly become one of those riders who would go on a big GT attack where he needs Konrad to go super deep for him but of course playing 2nd fiddle in the third week doesn't help his own ambitions.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Aug 22, 2019
7
1
535
It looks like Buchmann will take on the Giro in 2021. The squat could include
Buchmann (4th in TdF), Keldermann (3rd Giro), Konrad (8th Giro), Großschartner (9th Vuelta), Schachmann (1st Paris-Nice). That is quite an insane lineup.
Ackermann and Sagan will go to the Tour with the full sprint squad and most likely Oss and Burghardt. Maybe Kämna for a first try at a GT.
Source:
How well does Emanuel Buchmann actually look in pink? We don't know. In May 2021, however, Team Bora - hansgrohe would like to find out. As radsport-news.com has learned, the Raubling-based team is planning to have Buchmann as captain for the 104th Giro d'Italia. 'Emu' is said to be aiming for his first Grand Tour podium at the Tour of Italy after a crash at the Critérium du Dauphiné in August put a spanner in the works for the 2020 Tour de France.

"Despite everything, we saw at the Dauphiné where I stand and that a podium in a Grand Tour is possible if everything goes perfectly," Buchmann told radsport-news.com last week in his personal season review, and made people sit up and take notice with the subsequent phrase: "So we're taking another run at it in 2021. Whether it will be the Tour is not yet certain. The course is certainly not optimal for me in 2021."

Now the planning seems to be a step further, even if there is no official confirmation of this yet. Buchmann's first major goal for the season is therefore not the Tour, but the Giro. Team boss Ralph Denk and sports director Enrico Poitschke have thus also solved a real luxury problem:

Buchmann's Giro start would be the solution for the Tour squad.

Because with Buchmann and Peter Sagan as well as sprint ace Pascal Ackermann, whom Denk has promised a Tour debut for 2021, three potential captains for France would be on board - with different goals and thus also very different needs in terms of further squad and helper planning for the Tour of France. Balancing all of that is very difficult with an eight-man squad.

By shifting Buchmann's focus to the pink jersey or at least the podium at the Giro d'Italia, which the 2019 Tour fourth-place finisher has never ridden, there is now a lot of new freedom around Tour planning. Ackermann could take his feel-good squad of Rüdiger Selig and Michael Schwarzmann and maybe even Andreas Schillinger to France, Sagan would have room for a bodyguard like Daniel Oss or Marcus Burghardt. And yet Poitschke could still nominate one or two climbers who might seek their luck in the stage chase or try their hand at the classification issue without any pressure at all, while the pressure of results is on Ackermann and Sagan.

A perfect candidate for this would be youngster Lennard Kämna, for example, who could try his hand as a classification rider in a three-week Tour for the first time in his career in 2021.

Giro squad fully focused on Buchmann and the classification?

At the Giro, on the other hand, Buchmann will probably get a team fully geared to him and the mountains, in order to be able to pursue the question of how well the color pink suits him and to possibly be able to tie TV Sport Germany to a bike race for more than three weeks again, even far away from the Tour.

Vuelta ninth-placed Felix Großschartner as well as Giro eighth-placed Patrick Konrad and newcomer Wilco Kelderman, third overall at the Tour of Italy in 2020, could start alongside Buchmann and thus form a top-class mountain quartet.

Also with a view to the Olympic Games, a program with Ardennes classics and Tour of Italy, followed by a break and high-altitude training camp to prepare for Tokyo, seems to make sense for the climbers. After all, 2021 will be the last chance for most mountain specialists to win an Olympic medal. It cannot be assumed that a similarly mountain-heavy course will be found around Paris 2024 as around Mount Fuji on July 25.

And the date for the road race, which takes place exactly one week after the Tour final, also speaks against the Tour in terms of training science. Not to mention the quarantine and entry regulations for the Olympic starters in Tokyo in view of Corona. For it is also still possible that Tour starters who ride to Paris will not be allowed to start at the Games in Japan a week later. This might even suggest that Maximilian Schachmann could also be part of a possible Giro squad around Buchmann.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
It looks like Buchmann will take on the Giro in 2021. The squat could include
Buchmann (4th in TdF), Keldermann (3rd Giro), Konrad (8th Giro), Großschartner (9th Vuelta), Schachmann (1st Paris-Nice). That is quite an insane lineup.
Ackermann and Sagan will go to the Tour with the full sprint squad and most likely Oss and Burghardt. Maybe Kämna for a first try at a GT.
Source:
Kelderman is going to for the Tour.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Kelderman possibly gets a free role for the Tour without much support. Kämna won't loose time on purpose at the beginning but I don't think that he will go for GC. He could win 1-2 stages again.
Do you think Schachmann will go to the Giro? The course at the olympics suits him, that's why I think he will go for the Giro, because he doesn't want to miss the chance at the olympics.
Ackermann and Sagan at the Tour de France could be a recipe for disaster. Sagan wants to go for green, Ackermann for stages. They have to sprint both then...
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Buchmann at the Giro makes a lot of sense, as noted before. He gets to lead a GT with a team focussed on him, will be able to see where he stands as a GC rider after a lost season with promising outings and he will escape the german media frenzy and pressure cooker that is the Tour. Furthermore, he will have a good preparation for the Olympics on a course that suits him. He already had a great race in 2016 when he was far from his current level.

Schachmann should realistically be at the Giro too. To support Buchmann, potentially hunt stages and prepare the Olympics. Kämna at the Tour as Boras token german climber is to be expected. The plan was for him to ride for GC in one week races in 2021, maybe they will combine that with a 'just hang on as long as you can and support Kelderman' at the Tour.

A potential Giro team: Buchmann, Großschartner, Konrad, Schachmann, Fabbro, Benedetti, Pöstlberger, Gamper/Schelling/Burghardt

I'm very interested in how they will handle the Ackermann-Sagan duo. Having both sprint would be interesting, to say the least. I think it'll depend on how serious Sagan(and the team) are on winning the green jersey. If Sagan doesn't care about that and Bora management decides that the potential of multiple stages are a better achievement than the green jersey, Ackermann and Sagan can divide the sprint stages between them and especially Sagan could have some stage hunting fun.

Having both them plus their support (Oss, Selig, Schwarzmann, maybe Schillinger/ Politt) will defintely leave Kelderman without much support for a GC bid (Kämna). But with Ineos and Jumbo trains it isn't that important and having lesser pressure (without a team fully supporting him) could be benficial for him too.
 
Buchmann at the Giro makes a lot of sense, as noted before. He gets to lead a GT with a team focussed on him, will be able to see where he stands as a GC rider after a lost season with promising outings and he will escape the german media frenzy and pressure cooker that is the Tour. Furthermore, he will have a good preparation for the Olympics on a course that suits him. He already had a great race in 2016 when he was far from his current level.

Schachmann should realistically be at the Giro too. To support Buchmann, potentially hunt stages and prepare the Olympics. Kämna at the Tour as Boras token german climber is to be expected. The plan was for him to ride for GC in one week races in 2021, maybe they will combine that with a 'just hang on as long as you can and support Kelderman' at the Tour.

A potential Giro team: Buchmann, Großschartner, Konrad, Schachmann, Fabbro, Benedetti, Pöstlberger, Gamper/Schelling/Burghardt

I'm very interested in how they will handle the Ackermann-Sagan duo. Having both sprint would be interesting, to say the least. I think it'll depend on how serious Sagan(and the team) are on winning the green jersey. If Sagan doesn't care about that and Bora management decides that the potential of multiple stages are a better achievement than the green jersey, Ackermann and Sagan can divide the sprint stages between them and especially Sagan could have some stage hunting fun.

Having both them plus their support (Oss, Selig, Schwarzmann, maybe Schillinger/ Politt) will defintely leave Kelderman without much support for a GC bid (Kämna). But with Ineos and Jumbo trains it isn't that important and having lesser pressure (without a team fully supporting him) could be benficial for him too.
It´s also possible that Ackermann will go for stages and the green jersey. He won the spinter jersey at the giro in 2019 and I don't see a reason why he should not try to target also the green jersey at the tour. Sagan wasn´t competitive in this years sprints and he failed to win the jersey against a pure sprinter on a route more suited to him. One time I remembered Denk saying that it´s also a possibility to take Sagan to the tour without the role he had during the last years.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
It´s also possible that Ackermann will go for stages and the green jersey. He won the spinter jersey at the giro in 2019 and I don't see a reason why he should not try to target also the green jersey at the tour. Sagan wasn´t competitive in this years sprints and he failed to win the jersey against a pure sprinter on a route more suited to him. One time I remembered Denk saying that it´s also a possibility to take Sagan to the tour without the role he had during the last years.
I would think Sagan has something to say here... And thank God for that. If I see him do a leadout once more for Ackermann and he then just crumbles like in Paris-Nice I will lose it.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS