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Teams & Riders The official Egan Bernal is the new Egan Bernal thread

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Neither is it outrageous to believe he would have won one more. Bernal aint no slouch and he's finally back, but this Tour is just too much right now I think, even though I could actually see him podium given the questions we have about the absolute best riders.

Since he didn't quite reach his Giro 2021 level in the Vuelta, and also with the back issues in mind, I don't want to set the bar too high either.
 
Let's face it, those people who said Bernal was lucky, can also say the same about Pogacar in this Giro 2024, but it would be unfair for Bernal, because he faced more fierce competition in 2019!
Bernal has lots of possibilities, lots of transfer chatter about Marc Hirschi, so we will see who UAE is going to choose, FDJ has Kung who is hit or miss, EF sending a decent bunch, and what or who will Pidcock be to Bernal? I have high hopes for the race and for Bernal to shine. For me it's exciting to think of how UAE will use Del Toro, Hirschi has been going pretty good lately, we will see if him being Swiss ends up being that important..If I was betting, EF will win the race.
 
Even if Bernal exceeds his previous best what do we get? His crowning achievement to this point has been finishing 1:11 in front of teammate Thomas in the TDF, Alaphillipe was 5th in GC! Kruijswijk was 3rd for heaven sakes. Bernal is a nice racer, it sucks that he's been so far below his best for so long through no fault of his own, but he's in no way the sort of generational talent that Pogacar or Vingegaard or even Remco are. He's just not.
Geraint Thomas is lucky to win in 2018. The two other riders on the podium were doing the Giro-Tour double with one of them being his own teammate, a young still learning the ropes Roglic in fourth, and of all people Kruijswijk in fifth finally showing something at the Tour. Thomas is a nice rider and it sucks he’s had to slave away for Froome and Wiggins but he’s gotten curb stomped by Pogacar and Vingegaard while also being humiliated by Roglic. He’s shown he’s in no way the sort of generational talent like the others, he’s just not.
 
The crash happened when he was already found out to be a solid tier below Roglic.
The bus collision was after the back/knee issues that contributed to that level of form, to be fair. He's taken a f*ckin beating after his fortunate Tour win. That can't do much for the psyche of a lesser competitor so IMO he's accomplished pretty great things. He didn't quit.
 
Let's face it, those people who said Bernal was lucky, can also say the same about Pogacar in this Giro 2024, but it would be unfair for Bernal, because he faced more fierce competition in 2019!

Everybody and their grandma knew that Teddy Merckx was gonna rule in the Giro so top guys chickened out (except Thomas, who tried his luck and counted on external factors). Looking at Teddy's climbing domestiques (and extrapolating their level) I feel the same will happen at the Tour: there will be only Thomas and a bunch of sprinters. The rest will focus on Vuelta (hoping that the Cannibal won't go there). Mark my words.
 
Everybody and their grandma knew that Teddy Merckx was gonna rule in the Giro so top guys chickened out (except Thomas, who tried his luck and counted on external factors). Looking at Teddy's climbing domestiques (and extrapolating their level) I feel the same will happen at the Tour: there will be only Thomas and a bunch of sprinters. The rest will focus on Vuelta (hoping that the Cannibal won't go there). Mark my words.
Regardless of your particular take, saying “mark my words” is an empty expression unless you can put down a marker. How many posters come back to comment in a post-GT race thread and say here is where I got it wrong 5 weeks ago?
 
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Thomas, Ala and Kruijswijk were much better back then than they are now.
Hm, the other two for sure but with Thomas I am not so sure. Not completely absurd that 2022 Thomas was his best version. And matching that would mean being able to podium the Tour for Bernal. And I actually think that he can top 5. Just Vingegaard and Pogacar are out of reach if everything goes as expected for them. But they are out of reach for everyone.
 
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He has always ahead or the leading group in every race, continental or WT this year. I am afraid something is off here. Could be related to over racing, sick, mental, or still issues with recuperation. But to think that this is his normal level is very silly.
 
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