The Remco Evenepoel is the next Eddy Merckx thread

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Already regretting not picking him in the CQ game.

Of course he would be in great shape in these early stage races, while others are just racing into form with bigger targets way ahead on their mind.

He will have 500-600 points by the end of March. Im convinced.
 
Already regretting not picking him in the CQ game.

Of course he would be in great shape in these early stage races, while others are just racing into form with bigger targets way ahead on their mind.

He will have 500-600 points by the end of March. Im convinced.
Well, his main objectives are also way later down the road with the Giro, Olympics and Worlds. Its not like Evenepoel decided to peak in February to get some early points for the season. He just happens to be among the best in Argentina without hitting on all cylinders. If that will be the case when his season in Europe begins, who knows. But I highly doubt this is his best form of the year.
 
I fully understand those who are treading lightly. And there are unknowns when it comes to efforts over three weeks and (perhaps) the exact nature of his climbing ability. However, riders with huge engines rarely have issues over three weeks and in my mind he is an hinault type climber -- all power and regular rhythm.

Having said that, I believe that he is the biggest talent since Merckx (and I have followed cycling since the early 70s btw). And he has actually shown this in his results -- so far.

I also actually think he has the greatest room for improvement because he only got into cycling so late -- and that's scary.

Frankly, I would be surprised if he does not make the Giro podium (and I am picking him to win actually). I believe he is that type of outlier.
 
Well, his main objectives are also way later down the road with the Giro, Olympics and Worlds. Its not like Evenepoel decided to peak in February to get some early points for the season. He just happens to be among the best in Argentina without hitting on all cylinders. If that will be the case when his season in Europe begins, who knows. But I highly doubt this is his best form of the year.
Well, that's basically what he said as well. He was in much better shape than he was last year, also 4 to 5 kgs lighter. But still not in top shape either.

Frankly, I would be surprised if he does not make the Giro podium (and I am picking him to win actually). I believe he is that type of outlier.
Pfff... I'm a huge fan, but expectations like that are really a bit too much imho. I agree with him being one of the biggest "modern era" outliers, and riders with big engines coping well with 3 weeks etc. And of course, the Giro has 60km of ITT, and none of the absolute top GC riders will start there (Roglic, Bernal, Dumoulin... all do the TDF instead). But still.

I’m curious to see how Leknessund does too, strong TT and climbing skills.
Yeah, i tried to get a discussion going about him, Van Wilder, Bagioli and some other guys in the other topic. But they are still quite far from Remco's current level.
 
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Well, his main objectives are also way later down the road with the Giro, Olympics and Worlds. Its not like Evenepoel decided to peak in February to get some early points for the season. He just happens to be among the best in Argentina without hitting on all cylinders. If that will be the case when his season in Europe begins, who knows. But I highly doubt this is his best form of the year.
Failing to see where I said that these early races were his main objectives or that he is in peak form right now.

I also dont think it is stupid to believe, that he has prepared very well to make some good results early in his season this time. Compared to last year. He is lighter and in better shape. With a year of racing under his belt. I think he wanted to start this season off like this. While others may need a race or two to get going. Lets see how he fares in a better field once back in Europe. I still think he will have 500-600 points by the end of March.
 
Pfff... I'm a huge fan, but expectations like that are really a bit too much imho. I agree with him being one of the biggest "modern era" outliers, and riders with big engines coping well with 3 weeks etc. And of course, the Giro has 60km of ITT, and none of the absolute top GC riders will start there (Roglic, Bernal, Dumoulin... all do the TDF instead). But still.
Fair enough. Look, things could go wrong, for sure -- crash, illness, stuck behind winds, etc... and will he lose time on big MTFs...?

But he put 30+ seconds minimum into everyone but Ganna in the space of 7-8KM. Now spread that over 60... He will have a cushion to play with... and as you point out the competition is not top top flight.

I guess my question would be -- how does Pogacar win three stages and finish on the podium of his first GT, while Evenpoel (who has so far proven to be a far greater outlier -- FAR!) will just top 20? Not sure I see the logic in that argument either.
 
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Fair enough. Look, things could go wrong, for sure -- crash, illness, stuck behind winds, etc... and will he lose time on big MTFs...?

But he put 30+ seconds minimum into everyone but Ganna in the space of 7-8KM. Now spread that over 60... He will have a cushion to play with... and as you point out the competition is not top top flight.

I guess my question would be -- how does Pogacar win three stages and finish on the podium of his first GT, while Evenpoel (who has so far proven to be a far greater outlier -- FAR!) will just top 20? Not sure I see the logic in that argument either.
Remco will just be riding for 3 years when the Giro starts. Pogacar had been riding for 12 years or so. Remco has never had to ride conservatively for weeks, he never learned how. He still has a lot to learn in terms of peloton etiquette, positioning, being attentive, tactics... Remco has never done multiple mountain stages in a row. Only did one stage with more than one climb in it iirc (in Adriatica Ionica... and guess what, he jumped the gun and lost 90s in GC). Pogacar already won Tour de l'Avenir, a 10 day stage race, with lots more climbs than Remco ever did in any stage race he competed in. The longest stage race he did is 7 days.

I also feel there are more (better) outsiders for a top 10 spot in the Giro than in last years Vuelta. Also to be fair, Pogacar got one of his 3 stagewins gifted by Roglic (it was obvious at the time, but the "La Famiglia" documentary by TLJ basically confirmed it). Nevertheless, Pogacar had plenty of more opportunities to hone his climbing in actual race conditions competitively. Getting to know his body. Understanding how the competition acts/reacts etc. Having the horsepower is one thing, knowing when and how to use it is a completely different issue.
 
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I fully understand those who are treading lightly. And there are unknowns when it comes to efforts over three weeks and (perhaps) the exact nature of his climbing ability. However, riders with huge engines rarely have issues over three weeks and in my mind he is an hinault type climber -- all power and regular rhythm.

Having said that, I believe that he is the biggest talent since Merckx (and I have followed cycling since the early 70s btw). And he has actually shown this in his results -- so far.

I also actually think he has the greatest room for improvement because he only got into cycling so late -- and that's scary.

Frankly, I would be surprised if he does not make the Giro podium (and I am picking him to win actually). I believe he is that type of outlier.
In fact Remco knows that he is exceptional. As a result he is extremely confident. The number of times he mentioned that he wants to win 2 gold medals at the Olympics is quite high. I don't think he is impressed by anyone. We will see how he will fare in the Tour where he will encounter some stiff opposition. Normally he should win the time trial. He also mentioned that several stages suit him.
 
I guess my question would be -- how does Pogacar win three stages and finish on the podium of his first GT, while Evenpoel (who has so far proven to be a far greater outlier -- FAR!) will just top 20? Not sure I see the logic in that argument either.
I agree with this. Pogacar is a great young rider, but he doesn't have some of Remco's gifts, especially the ability to take probably 2 minutes over the course of 60 km ITT. And we know that the Giro field will be weaker, just as TP podiumed a weak Vuelta, outside of Roglic. So if Remco performs as expected in the TT kms and can hang on the mountains (a huge if, of course) a podium is a reasonable expectation. I don't follow the minutae of his performance last year but was he ever badly dropped or exploded on a mountain stage?

Certainly he could probably Top 10 with some energy management if that's his goal.
 
I think Remco will try to win stages and not go for GC. Unless he finds himself in a position where a good result overall is achievable.

He will surely try to hang on with the best on some mountain stages, if he doesnt go in the break trying to win the stage.

Cliche, but they will take one day at a time.
 
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I think Remco will try to win stages and not go for GC. Unless he finds himself in a position where a good result overall is achievable.

He will surely try to hang on with the best on some mountain stages, if he doesnt go in the break trying to win the stage.

Cliche, but they will take one day at a time.
He will obviously try to win the TTs, but apart from that it looks to me like he values GCs over stage wins if you look at the Baloise Belgium Tour last year and San Juan this year. If he were to lose a lot of time early, he can still shift his focus to stages later on.
 
He will obviously try to win the TTs, but apart from that it looks to me like he values GCs over stage wins if you look at the Baloise Belgium Tour last year and San Juan this year. If he were to lose a lot of time early, he can still shift his focus to stages later on.
If i remember correctly, he said he is going to try to follow the GC guys because he wants to know what it takes, and how he relates to them. Obviously he could just pick some days to do that, but there is little value in cherry picking stages, when the GC guys went deep the day before and he didn't. So i also think he'll try to go for GC, not per se to ride a good GC, but to learn about riding a 3 week GC against better opponents.
 
We pretty much said the same thing.
The difference being that i remember him saying something along those lines, and you were just speculating ;)
So it was basically a confirmation.

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PS: Riders from the incomplete and provisional startlist that could vey well keep him out of the top 20 in the Giro d'Italia if his climbing legs aren't up to the task yet over 3 weeks:

Carapaz
Nibali
Yates
Bardet
Majka
Bennett
Fuglsang
Kelderman
Carthy
Vlasov
Zakarin
Hagen
Pozzovivo
Geoghegan Hart
Formolo
Ciccone
Knox
Piccoli
Bouwman
Brambilla
Masnada
...
 
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Jan 24, 2020
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The difference being that i remember him saying something along those lines, and you were just speculating ;)
So it was basically a confirmation.

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PS: Riders from the incomplete and provisional startlist that could vey well keep him out of the top 20 in the Giro d'Italia if his climbing legs aren't up to the task yet over 3 weeks:

Carapaz
Nibali
Yates
Bardet
Majka
Bennett
Fuglsang
Kelderman
Carthy
Vlasov
Zakarin
Hagen
Pozzovivo
Geoghegan Hart
Formolo
Ciccone
Knox
Piccoli
Bouwman
Brambilla
Masnada
...
That is not at all impressive. It looks almost certain that he will be top 10.
 
That is not at all impressive. It looks almost certain that he will be top 10.
Again, incomplete and provisional startlist. Teams like Movistar, Mitchelton Scott, etc have only one rider so far, and plenty of the smaller teams as well. Sunweb has only 2 riders so far.
And again, if his legs aren't up to it. If he has one bad day, he's out of the top 10 just like that. If he has two or three, he's out of the top 20.

I think there are about 5 guys so far, that should be expected to always finish in front of him unless they crash or are completely out of form. Then there is at least 5 guys or more who have already proven to be able to finish a GT in or around a top 10 spot. Being able to hang on with these guys should be difficult enough. Top 20 looks like a safe bet, unless he crashes or somehow, against all odds, proves not to be GT material after all. Top 10 seems like a good goal for him. It's doable, but not certain and will definitely not come easy. I'm not ruling out a better result either, but i don't think that should be the expectation. I know Pogacar finished ahead of Quintana, Majka and Lopez, but that doesn't automatically mean Remco will be able to follow Majka, Bardet and Yates. And he has to stay upright as well.


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Article in Le Figaro

Google Translated:

Remco Evenepoel, another year to confirm

Winner of the Tour de San Juan on Sunday, Remco Evenepoel (20) started his second season in professional style only in the best possible way. At 20, the Belgian prodigy is no longer a great hope.

Will 2020 rhyme with feast? The "little cannibal" has the appetite of a big one. At the time of embarking on a season that promises to be even richer than the previous one, the European time trial champion will meet the competition, galvanized by an inaugural triumph.

A second success in a stage race

After the element of surprise, the time has come for confirmation. After the home victory on the Tour of Belgium in June 2019 - where he also won a stage, Remco Evenepoel won the Tour de San Juan (7 stages) on Sunday. With a victory after a time trial overflown on Tuesday (pushing his first pursuer to 32 seconds), the powered team leader Deceuninck - Quick-Step after the defection of Julian Alaphilippe, ill, eyeing the white jersey leader at the end of the week. A border on Friday could have changed everything. "Above all, you shouldn't panic," he reacted hot, brimming with lucidity. At the cost of an effort of which he has the secret, he sticks together. And wins. Between the Tour of San Juan and Evenepoel, the story is decidedly beautiful. It was on these same Argentinian roads that the Brabançon had started pro last year, finishing ninth and better young. He is now the youngest winner. "It’s a race that will forever mark my career," he admitted before the start.

Past master in the art of time trials

In Punta-Negra on the time trial, Remco Evenepoel gleaned his seventh career victory. Anything but a coincidence. He made discipline a specialty. European timekeeper champion for his first appearance on August 9, 2019 in Alkmaar (Netherlands), the phenomenon failed just over a minute from specialist Rohan Dennis a few weeks later in Yorkshire. At the end of an ordeal whose distance he had not previously tamed, the native of Schepdaal let his pout burst, conquering frustrated. Like the announcement of a dynasty? Evenepoel was the king the year before, in juniors at least. Champion of Belgium, Europe and the world of the time trial in 2018, he achieved such a performance in the online race. "The little cannibal" (nickname in tribute to Eddy Merckx) left no crumbs to its competitors. It was only natural that he quickly made his debut with the pros. Courted by the Sky in particular, he opted, faithful to the fatherland, for the colors of Deceuninck - Quick-Step, the team of Patrick Lefevere. The Belgian manager who sees Evenepoel "perhaps the best runner I have managed" (at that age). From Belgium, it is still in question with his first victory in Zottegem on June 13, 2019 during the second stage of the Tour of Belgium which he will win at the end of the five stages.

Growing notoriety in Belgium and worldwide

Few of the Belgians had not heard the name Evenepoel before the Tour of Belgium. Weeks go by. The Basque Country consecrates it. On August 3, 2019, Remco Evenepoel soars to the top during the Clasica San Sebastian. 10 seconds early. Time suspended. The prodigy had just won his first World Tour classic, at 19, the record of the race, after a fantastic as well as unexpected recovery. The legendary Eddy Merckx is full of praise: “what he does is exceptional.” Bernard Hinault abounds, “he is of the caliber of the great.” Cyrille Guimard brings the two together: “This is not the new Merckx but Merckx + Hinault ”.

Then come the European and world time trial championships, the name of the young runner gives way to a reputation. The first professional year of the man who had played football until his 15th birthday was a great success. As a highlight, Evenepoel became the youngest winner of the Belgian Sportsman of the Year award last December, succeeding Eden Hazard, just that. A logical continuation finally for the one who had received the honors of best Belgian hope in 2018. Often cataloged with "New Merckx", the interested party knows that he has time left to catch up with the six distinctions of sportsman of the year of his illustrious elder. "Why shouldn't he become better than me?", The "Cannibal" does not doubt it.
"I don't know my limits yet, but I feel there is still room. I can still achieve great and great things… "assured Evenepoel at the end of the ceremony, making an appointment with the future.

A first big tour on the menu


It’s about the future of the peloton. A new generation with certain talent is emerging. There are countless cracks, from the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar (21 years old) to Matthieu Van der Poel (25 years old), not to be confused with Remco Evenepoel, via the Colombian Egan Bernal (23 years old), winner last July of the Tour de France, symbol of a golden generation that wants to take over the decade that has just started. It’s a question of the future, especially for Evenepoel. Son of Patrick Evenepoel, winner of the Grand Prix of Wallonia in 1993, the prodigy has just celebrated his 20th birthday on January 25th. 20 years, in 2020, the opportunity to reach 20 victories? The possibilities are endless. Le Brabançon has announced a rich program, starting with the Tour of the Algarve (from February 19), Tirreno-Adriatico in March then the Ardennes classics in April with La Flèche Wallone and Liège-Bastogne-Liège without forgetting to do a detour to his native Flemish Brabant on the occasion of La Flèche Brabançonne. If the Tokyo Olympics at the end of July constitute a goal assumed by the Belgian, the highlight of his season will be the discovery of a Grand Tour. Speculation was rife as to whether the prodigy would participate in a queen event on the calendar. In the columns of the Gazzetta dello Sport, Remco Evenepoel formalized its participation in the next Giro from May 9 to 31. Now a prominent member of the "Wolfpack", his team's protected designation of origin, emphasizing their cohesion, the gifted man wants to make the future his playground. The future may be written in Hungary. The first leg of the next Giro will be relocated to Budapest as part of an inaugural time trial. The opportunity for Remco to signal itself. As if he still needed it.
 
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Again, incomplete and provisional startlist. Teams like Movistar, Mitchelton Scott, etc have only one rider so far, and plenty of the smaller teams as well. Sunweb has only 2 riders so far.
And again, if his legs aren't up to it. If he has one bad day, he's out of the top 10 just like that. If he has two or three, he's out of the top 20.

I think there are about 5 guys so far, that should be expected to always finish in front of him unless they crash or are completely out of form. Then there is at least 5 guys or more who have already proven to be able to finish a GT in or around a top 10 spot. Being able to hang on with these guys should be difficult enough. Top 20 looks like a safe bet, unless he crashes or somehow, against all odds, proves not to be GT material after all. Top 10 seems like a good goal for him. It's doable, but not certain and will definitely not come easy. I'm not ruling out a better result either, but i don't think that should be the expectation. I know Pogacar finished ahead of Quintana, Majka and Lopez, but that doesn't automatically mean Remco will be able to follow Majka, Bardet and Yates. And he has to stay upright as well.


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Article in Le Figaro

Google Translated:
Algarve and Tirreno will give us more information on his climbing abilities in a WT field. As Tirreno can be compared to last year's Tour of Romandie, we will also see how much he has progressed. The only questions that remain to be answered during the Giro:
  • Can he safely navigate a nervous WT peloton day after day?
  • Can he keep up his level for three weeks?
 
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Only thing about Giro GC is doesn't he also want to peak for Liege? Cause that's a full full season of peaks.
That's a week earlier or so.

I still have him pegged as more of a Cancellara type rider who can dominate the classics and TTs, as compared to a pure GT rider. But he's also still so young that he can develop into almost anything.
Yes, a Cancellara that weighs 59 kilo...
 
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I still have him pegged as more of a Cancellara type rider who can dominate the classics and TTs, as compared to a pure GT rider. But he's also still so young that he can develop into almost anything.
I have to say the comparison with Cancellara hadn’t manifested in my tiny brain. I’d actually liken him to Froome, in that he can TT, he can put in a burst and ride people off his wheel, he clearly has huge aerobic capacity and of course he has little explosiveness. Froome struggled most on shorter, steeper ramps which may be where Remco struggles too.
 

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