Teams & Riders The Remco Evenepoel is the next Eddy Merckx thread

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Pedaling strokes get different, power isn't uniformally distributed over a pedal stroke, and steep uphill, with low inertia the effect of this gets bigger.



And how do you know Evenepoel doesn't have this quality?
 
I mean sure, but it's still very important. Someone like Evans was also primarily a good TT guy and he still did very well on the Zoncolan. I'm no expert but it seems to me like this type of long effort would suit Evenepoel much better than short steep ramps.
Evans actually did lose that Giro on the Mortirolo and Zoncolan. He was actually significantly better in medium mountains and had a tendency to hang on too long and break on the bigger climbs, but he was quite explosive and good at shorter steeper climbs.
 
Ironically, all shall be revealed very soon and this argument will be a bit obsolete. But I guess that’s precisely why people here invest so much into supporting their claims. Because “I told you so” moment will be spectacular come Zoncolan;)
And that's the moment when it becomes a little bit complicated. He was completely off the bike at the beginning of the year for 6-7 weeks and even longer of riding outside. The injury has definitely still some impact on his performance - strength imbalances etc. We also heard he had some problems with the position on his bike because of it. Considering all of these, his preparation for Giro was so far from perfect that even if he fails on the big climbs or any other moment during next 2 weeks, we still won't be justified to say "ok, now we finally have an obvious evidence that Remco is far from being an elite climber or generally GT contender, end of story".
IMHO we need to wait at least for his next GT to make any legitimate long-term conclusions about him as a GC rider. His shape is surely not at the level it could be if he hadn't crashed and had a regular, undisturbed preparation period.

Saying that, what he's shown during the last week, already exceeded any of my excpectations. Honestly, before the start of the Giro, I was very sceptical generally about the decision of Remco riding this race at all, with lack of preparation, coming straight out of injury etc. And obviously more sceptical seeing him amongst the pre-race favourites. And so were most of the cycling fans I suppose (maybe not inculde biggest Remco-hyped ones). On the other hand, I can't belive DQS would make him start the Giro and put in the leader's seat if his training numbers and other indicators hadn't been good enough to make them 100% sure he's ready to fight for the win.

For now, we could say that he's without a doubt in a GT-winning shape (ofc we haven't had any proper mountains yet and I do not exclude he can falter 3rd week) and that's after having just 2 months of regular preparation period, without a single race in his legs and after a serious injury (btw as much as I know, pro riders are able to get back to race-fitness quite fast and 2 months of quality training is enough to be in a kind of decent shape but for 99,9% of them definitely not in a GT-winning one).

And that's an unquestionable reason to call Remco an exceptional talent. Also considering this, we have every right to expect that his next GT performances could be only superior to this year's Giro (which is quite a scary concept if he's actually going to win this one :D).
 
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Pedaling strokes get different, power isn't uniformally distributed over a pedal stroke, and steep uphill, with low inertia the effect of this gets bigger.

https://cyclingtips.com/2013/09/climbing-and-time-trialling-how-power-outputs-are-affected/

https://sci-hub.se/https://www.researchgate.net/publication/233941416_Effect_of_Gradient_on_Cycling_Gross_Efficiency_and_Technique
Only read the first article yet, where the introduction states the author has no idea why you can output more watts on a climb, than on a TT bike. Not exactly a confidence booster, but ok. It makes sense that you have to "get going" again with every pedal stroke when climbing, because you slow down much faster than on a flat surface. I can understand there is an advantage there for riders with a more explosive/punchy profile since every pedal stroke needs more acceleration, but i have my doubts as to how much this will matter in actual race circumstances and whether you can tell Evenepoel has the muscles for that or not. If it did make that much of a difference, you'd expect guys like Alaphilippe, Teuns, Hirschi, or Even Valverde, to be much better at steep climbs. So it's not that obvious.

I'd also assume this phenomenon gets more apparent for climbers pushing a bigger gear, as a smaller gear evens out power distribution, lessening the effect of slowing down after each stroke.

I'm not convinced this is a make or break matter yet. I'm sure it will have some impact, just like Evenepoel being more aerodynamic will also have an impact on the climbs, but i doubt either will have him bonk once the gradient exceeds 8%.
 
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I did some calculations assuming that Bernal has an exceptional power to weight ratio (~7) for a 20 min effort but only average aerodynamics and Evenepoel has exceptional aerodynamics and a very high power to weight ratio (~6,5) but lower than Bernal. Using my estimates it seems that up to a slope of 4-5 degrees, Evenepoel has an advantage. I also tried to estimate Evenepoel vs a peloton (where the chasers have an aerodynamic advantage) and it looks like Evenepoel may already have advantage from a 2-3 degrees slope and upwards (unless they are all TT guys with reasonable climbing abilities). These are just rough estimates and there are many variables at play (weather, road conditions, energy left in the tank, mental abilities etc). Still, it may explain why Evenepoel can put minutes in to a chasing group, in particular in a hilly stage. It also means that if Bernal has indeed a better power to weight ratio, going with him to a final long and steep climb might not be the best strategy unless you can drain his energy prior to the climb.
 
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I did some calculations assuming that Bernal has an exceptional power to weight ratio (~7) for a 20 min effort but only average aerodynamics and Evenepoel has exceptional aerodynamics and a very high power to weight ratio (~6,5) but lower than Bernal. Using my estimates it seems that up to a slope of 4-5 degrees, Evenepoel has an advantage. I also tried to estimate Evenepoel vs a peloton (where the chasers have an aerodynamic advantage) and it looks like Evenepoel may already have advantage from a 2-3 degrees slope and upwards (unless they are all TT guys with reasonable climbing abilities). These are just rough estimates and there are many variables at play (weather, road conditions, energy left in the tank, mental abilities etc). Still, it may explain why Evenepoel can put minutes in to a chasing group, in particular in a hilly stage. It also means that if Bernal has indeed a better power to weight ratio, going with him to a final long and steep climb might not be the best strategy unless you can drain his energy prior to the climb.
Realistically, the absolute W/kg on a climb will not have 0.5W/kg difference on a 20 minute climb, cause that's enormous. But I do believe Evenepoels main asset is how aero he is and how little power he loses in an extremely aero position. To me his closest comparison, albeit a clearly weaker rider would be Castroviejo.
 
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I did some calculations assuming that Bernal has an exceptional power to weight ratio (~7) for a 20 min effort but only average aerodynamics and Evenepoel has exceptional aerodynamics and a very high power to weight ratio (~6,5) but lower than Bernal. Using my estimates it seems that up to a slope of 4-5 degrees, Evenepoel has an advantage. I also tried to estimate Evenepoel vs a peloton (where the chasers have an aerodynamic advantage) and it looks like Evenepoel may already have advantage from a 2-3 degrees slope and upwards (unless they are all TT guys with reasonable climbing abilities). These are just rough estimates and there are many variables at play (weather, road conditions, energy left in the tank, mental abilities etc). Still, it may explain why Evenepoel can put minutes in to a chasing group, in particular in a hilly stage. It also means that if Bernal has indeed a better power to weight ratio, going with him to a final long and steep climb might not be the best strategy unless you can drain his energy prior to the climb.
And can you calculate how much energy Evenepoel would save, over a 170km stage before reaching the final climb, meaning he would start the climb much fresher? And what a difference that could make? So many variables.
 
And can you calculate how much energy Evenepoel would save, over a 170km stage before reaching the final climb, meaning he would start the climb much fresher? And what a difference that could make? So many variables.
I think it helps. I'd expect him to do better at unipuerto stages where his team should drill it on the flats and false flats before they hit the hard part of the climb.
 
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And can you calculate how much energy Evenepoel would save, over a 170km stage before reaching the final climb, meaning he would start the climb much fresher? And what a difference that could make? So many variables.
Yes there are too many factors during a stage. Its easier to make a rough comparison during a TT. Energy conservation must be one of the most important factors. This is all about limiting accelerations and aerodynamic loads during the stage (so staying in the bunch) and consuming food at the right moment, things where a good team can help a lot. They are both about 60kg so they are both losing about the same energy during climbing (Eclimb = mass * heightclimb * 9,81).
 
Pretty clear he meant Bernal will be superior in the mountains during this Giro and will win as a result, which does not preclude Remco being as good or better in the future. Plus the age gap. Plus the fact that there are 3 GTs every year. Plus stuff happens (like last Tour when Bernal,a back took him out).
Maybe not clear, but that's exactly what I wrote: Bernal superior, and Remco winning a lot of GT's.
If Bernal is superior, and we already know that guys like Pogacar are at least as good, it would imply that both Bernal and Pogacar will deny many potential GT wins for (inferior) Remco.

That doesn't make sense. Either Remco is not inferior so he can win many, either he is inferior and he won't win many. You can't have both, unless you suggest that Remco will for sure win a lot of GT's in the future. And that is exactly what nobody dares to say for sure (making bold predictions before Remco even finished a GT), even not Remco's fanboys. But a guy who clearly isn't a fanboy is saying it. Really doesn't make sense.
 
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Alright, week 1 (almost) done, #2 on GC, 15 seconds down. He's not the best on the mountains, and he hasn't won a stage yet, there's room for improvements, but this is more than ok. I think all remco fans can be satisfied with that.
He's doing a great first grand tour, top 5 would be a great result for remco on the giro, but i know that the expectations here are to high for remco.
 
I don't understand why he tried to force an echelon on the descent to the last climb. That's a waste of energy. The 'Strade Bianche Light' stage next Wednesday will tell us more. Bernal showed earlier this year that he can handle it. Most other contenders have everything to prove.
I'm less concerned about the Zoncolan finish. Somehow I feel that will suit him more.
 
Another very good performance. Still in contention for the #1 spot... but needs to improve before they hit the high mountains. I rate Ciccone higher as of right now. (And, obviously, Bernal.)
The only longer climb so far, Ciccone has suffered more than Evenepoel. In all 3 uphill finishes, of which 2 suited Ciccone a lot more than Evenepoel, Ciccone took 12s out of Evenepoel in total.
 
I don't understand why he tried to force an echelon on the descent to the last climb. That's a waste of energy. The 'Strade Bianche Light' stage next Wednesday will tell us more. Bernal showed earlier this year that he can handle it. Most other contenders have everything to prove.
I'm less concerned about the Zoncolan finish. Somehow I feel that will suit him more.
I'm worried about both, but we'll see. Maybe He can surprise once again after getting a good rest.
 
I would sign on for any result of Remco as long as he can show recovery ability and strength in the mountains.
Much rather he be 7th while showing those things, than he be 3rd because he did some crazy things in a hilly stage but showed real weakness in the mountains.
For recovery i think the biggest indicator will be the final tt. He must get a really good time there.
 


13th when starting ... probably the fastest ascent time. A diesel as usual, and this time a diesel who really started to train in March... would not be suprised to see him with an amazing performance on the Zoncolan which is long enough for his engine
No need for any "amazing" performances tbh, i.e. if he stays within 1 minute or thereabouts in the GC behind Bernal before the final TT, he can win the overall.

The way I see it (as a totally neutral onlooker), Bernal needs to do to Remco in the mountains what Remco will do to Bernal in the TT (i.e. gap him properly).
 
And how do you know Evenepoel doesn't have this quality?
We don't know that yet. But I guess it was the direct reply to "Why wouldn't a small elite time trialist be an elite climber". And I agree, although certainly not a bad basis, there are certainly more nuances involved.

At Remco today: Still think he does very well. Its his first race after a serious injury, he never was the most explosive rider and also rode a strange climb in general with first dropping so far back. Maybe it was all his lack of explosiveness but maybe it was also some issue with the gearing or positioning. All in all - still curious how far he will go. We shouldnot forget that not-injured Bernal is arguably at Pogacar/Roglic level.
 
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