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.
 
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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.
 
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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.
 
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Nov 1, 2018
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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.
 

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