The Deceuninck - Quickstep Thread

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I agree that Hodeg has done nothing to earn his shot. But very recently Lefevere was saying he had been promised this Giro as sprinter.

Ballerini had great early season form and then that ebbed away. But he’s had a month off and looked strong in the leadout for Bennett today. Surely he’s worth a go in his home GT and he’s a capable domestique for the other stages too. Cavendish is Cavendish, win or lose he will bring big sponsor attention and as the sprinter with the second most wins this year (lol) he might get a stage or two.

If Evenepoel had been smashing prep races and was going in as a huge favourite for pink, fine, give him the full eight man team. But it’s his first race back from injury and they are nominally putting Almeida in the top leaders role with Remco as co-leader. If they don’t think that they are actually going to win GC, I don’t see what they gain by taking a sixth full time domestique rather than five and one free lancing sprinter.
Maybe one more aspect is that they are showing Almeida and other possible GC riders / domestiques they are serious about this and that they can offer the support. Otherwise such riders might think they are better off at a true GC team.
About Almeida... I don't know if this is any close to truth, but on the front page they say Almeida is offered 3millions per year by other teams... looks like they are rating him pretty high...
 
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Maybe one more aspect is that they are showing Almeida and other possible GC riders / domestiques they are serious about this and that they can offer the support. Otherwise such riders might think they are better off at a true GC team.
About Almeida... I don't know if this is any close to truth, but on the front page they say Almeida is offered 3millions per year by other teams... looks like they are rating him pretty high...
the 3 million thing took me aback a bit. Either teams see big champion in his numbers or an oligarch with a toy team has had a rush of blood to the head.

Other than that, yeah I mostly agree. There are sensible reasons to go all in for GC if a team has real GC ambitions. I just get a vague feeling of wrongness somewhere deep in my psyche at the sight of a Quickstep GT team with no sprinter.
 
I agree that Hodeg has done nothing to earn his shot. But very recently Lefevere was saying he had been promised this Giro as sprinter.

Ballerini had great early season form and then that ebbed away. But he’s had a month off and looked strong in the leadout for Bennett today. Surely he’s worth a go in his home GT and he’s a capable domestique for the other stages too. Cavendish is Cavendish, win or lose he will bring big sponsor attention and as the sprinter with the second most wins this year (lol) he might get a stage or two.

If Evenepoel had been smashing prep races and was going in as a huge favourite for pink, fine, give him the full eight man team. But it’s his first race back from injury and they are nominally putting Almeida in the top leaders role with Remco as co-leader. If they don’t think that they are actually going to win GC, I don’t see what they gain by taking a sixth full time domestique rather than five and one free lancing sprinter. If you are taking the guy who won Omloop, he can certainly do a domestiques job too.

Mostly it just rubs me the wrong way because they are Quickstep, the number one sprint and classics team of the recent era.
Yeah, thats cool but it is just your personal view then.

From their aim and aspirations with the team it doesnt make sense to include either of these three you have mentioned.

That Hodeg was "promised" a spot, I take with a pinch of salt. Thats very loose.

Ballerini is riding with Benett to get some chemistry before going to the Tour. Most likely that is what happening with them racing together in Algarve. Also, what would his purpose and role been in the Giro riding for Almeida/Evenepoel and Masnada (are some you guys happy now ;))?

Cavendish wouldnt make it to the last stage and would have been pointless selection with what they are trying to do here.

I actually like that they giving it a real shot with Almeida, Evenepoel and Masnada. They have Keisse and Cavanga for the flats. Honoré, Serry and Knox all solid supporting cast. It doesnt have room, nor is it necessary, or a good idea to bring in a sprinter into this mix just for the sake of it.

In the Tour it will be the likes of Ala, Bennett and maybe even Cavendish will be a part of the team. There is your sponsor attention. Going for stages and green jersey. The normal way for them, as you would like. :)
 
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Bennett is 30 and has never had a big money contract. From the point of view of a team looking to throw money at a sprinter he has a reassuring record of bulk winning without a leadout before going to QS. It’s very likely that there are teams willing to pay him not just more than QS will pay, but a multiple as much . All the signs pointed to a two year stint from the start.

The more interesting question is Morkov. Also out of contract and has one chance for a payday.
 
Bennett is 30 and has never had a big money contract. From the point of view of a team looking to throw money at a sprinter he has a reassuring record of bulk winning without a leadout before going to QS. It’s very likely that there are teams willing to pay him not just more than QS will pay, but a multiple as much . All the signs pointed to a two year stint from the start.

The more interesting question is Morkov. Also out of contract and has one chance for a payday.
I could imagine QS actually spending real money on Morkov -because he's a guy you just cannot replace easily and I think PL knows about the value of helpers with race-intelligence. Unless they want to focous on GC so much that they think it's not necessary.

No way is Bennett going back to Bora :D. Maybe Israel, if without Morkov - they have some very decent sprint helpers but only Greipel as a "big" sprinter?
 
I could imagine QS actually spending real money on Morkov -because he's a guy you just cannot replace easily and I think PL knows about the value of helpers with race-intelligence.
Ordinarily I’d agree with that. But Morkov has basically one contract opportunity to set himself up for life and his reputation is at its absolute peak. If I was his agent, I’d laugh at any offer that didn’t make him the best paid lead out in the history of the sport by a margin. He has no market value in two years, so success or sporting criteria are meaningless.

Contracts that set a guy up for life are... let’s just say not Lefevere’s favourite kind.
 
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As usual. A very wise decision of Lefevre. I think Bennet is able to perform till 2022. It would be unwise
to offer someone a much too expensive contract for a longer period. And, we known what will happen. Bennet will no longer reach the level from next year. And Lefevere will find a subtop sprinter, give him confidence and a good lead-out (Morkov to stay ?), or Jacobsen will make a good come-back. The other rider who will leave DCQ, Almeida, could experience the same problems in another team. No confidence, not the same camaraderie and support as with the wolfpack. One difference, Almeida is young. But maybe a bit short in talent to become a leader in another team.
 
The last time Lefevere paid market value for the reigning top sprinter was Cavendish all the way back in 2013. Bennett has been in the mix at the very top for three seasons on relatively low paying contracts and is 30. Signing another below market value contract for two more years would be unwise from the point of view of a comfortable retirement.
 
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So the speculation is Bennett back to Bora? I can see why that would appeal to him. One hell of a career vindication to go back to the team you came up with as a big money replacement for the guys they chose ahead of you...
Would Ineos be interested in a sprinter?

If it is one they aint got it is that, but I dont know if they would take him to the Giro or Tour. How they would fit into the team.

Israel could probably be a likely destination.
 
Would Ineos be interested in a sprinter?

If it is one they aint got it is that, but I dont know if they would take him to the Giro or Tour. How they would fit into the team.

Israel could probably be a likely destination.
Ineos has the money, but it doesn’t seem necessary for Bennett to accept the calendar restrictions that would come with it.

UAE have oligarch money, but again other priorities.

ISN have oligarch money and certainly wouldn’t keep him out of the Tour, so more likely.

If Bora are losing Sagan and Ackermann they will also have the money and they are an experienced sprinting outfit - the part that surprises me about that speculation is that it would so obviously involve team management eating a giant plate of humble pie, given the bitter situation that developed there at the end of his last contract.

Cofidis are always looking for their next chance to spend stupid money on a sprinter.

DSM have a train and would be well advised to put somebody more reliable than Bol at the end of it, but probably don’t have the money.

Id love to see him at EF, but no money.

Trek is another possibility.
 
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Keeping Mørkøv is crucial, though when Bennett came to Quickstep he demanded Archebold come with him. Obviously Mørkøv is much better so a team with deep pockets would want to lure him too.

What are the other options for Quickstep?
Ballerini - will he sign a new contract? Would he actually want to be a leadout guy if Mørkøv leaves?
Jakobsen - will he ever recover? Such a shame as I reckon Lefrevre thought he would be at Bennett''s level if not above this season.
Hodeg - sorry but he really has had such a dip in form
Cavendish - is he good enough for the GTs?

Who could they get in?
Tim Merlier is contracted through til 2022.
Are there any super young guys that UAE haven't signed yet?
 
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Keeping Mørkøv is crucial, though when Bennett came to Quickstep he demanded Archebold come with him. Obviously Mørkøv is much better so a team with deep pockets would want to lure him too.

What are the other options for Quickstep?
Ballerini - will he sign a new contract? Would he actually want to be a leadout guy if Mørkøv leaves?
Jakobsen - will he ever recover? Such a shame as I reckon Lefrevre thought he would be at Bennett''s level if not above this season.
Hodeg - sorry but he really has had such a dip in form
Cavendish - is he good enough for the GTs?

Who could they get in?
Tim Merlier is contracted through til 2022.
Are there any super young guys that UAE haven't signed yet?
Gaviria is on the way out at UAE, a proven winner and young, but in the career doldrums and cheap. A very Lefevere signing. Currently rumoured to Arkea though!

Philipsen would be the very most obvious guy but like Merlier he‘s not on the market.
 
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I suspect QS will sit on money for 2022 and make a play for Ewan in 2023.
it’s not impossible and it makes sporting sense but it does rub up against the same issue extending with Bennett does now. Lefevere does not like paying market value for sprinters already at or near the pinnacle of the sub-discipline. Ewan will want that contract to pay handsomely and teams will be lining up to do so.
 

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