The Sam Bennett Discussion Thread

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Red Rick said:
Aaand this guy won't get to lead Giro or Tour. Needs to get out of there asap.
Tbf. He did get to lead it last year... and won stages!

He just unlucky that they have both Sagan and Ackerman on that team.

He is good and will have easy to find a new team at least.
 
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Salvarani said:
Red Rick said:
Aaand this guy won't get to lead Giro or Tour. Needs to get out of there asap.
Tbf. He did get to lead it last year... and won stages!

He just unlucky that they have both Sagan and Ackerman on that team.

He is good and will have easy to find a new team at least.
He is one of the most obvious transfer targets in the sport as the only top tier sprinter who is both out of contract and not the clear sprint leader where he is. Any of EF, Mitchelton Scott, Astana, Ag2r, Bahrain, Sky, Sunweb, Trek etc would clearly benefit from signing him.
 
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Zinoviev Letter said:
Salvarani said:
Red Rick said:
Aaand this guy won't get to lead Giro or Tour. Needs to get out of there asap.
Tbf. He did get to lead it last year... and won stages!

He just unlucky that they have both Sagan and Ackerman on that team.

He is good and will have easy to find a new team at least.
He is one of the most obvious transfer targets in the sport as the only top tier sprinter who is both out of contract and not the clear sprint leader where he is. Any of EF, Mitchelton Scott, Astana, Ag2r, Bahrain, Sky, Sunweb, Trek etc would clearly benefit from signing him.
Well I hope he doesn't go to SKY, Ag2R , Bahrain or Astana as no place really for sprinters
Mitchelton Scott have Trentin
EF & Sunweb dont have the budget
Best bet would be Trek imo

And yes he is better than Ackerman
 
Hard to compare Ackermann and Bennett, as they usually don't race against each other for obvious reasons. In last year's Münsterland Giro they sprinted indeed against each other when they were supposed to work together. In the end both lost...

One of them has to go, and it's not Ackermann. Bennett is fast, but quite inconsistent. He still has those dry spells of weeks/months without result.
 
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HelloDolly said:
Zinoviev Letter said:
Salvarani said:
Red Rick said:
Aaand this guy won't get to lead Giro or Tour. Needs to get out of there asap.
Tbf. He did get to lead it last year... and won stages!

He just unlucky that they have both Sagan and Ackerman on that team.

He is good and will have easy to find a new team at least.
He is one of the most obvious transfer targets in the sport as the only top tier sprinter who is both out of contract and not the clear sprint leader where he is. Any of EF, Mitchelton Scott, Astana, Ag2r, Bahrain, Sky, Sunweb, Trek etc would clearly benefit from signing him.
Well I hope he doesn't go to SKY, Ag2R , Bahrain or Astana as no place really for sprinters
Mitchelton Scott have Trentin
EF & Sunweb dont have the budget
Best bet would be Trek imo

And yes he is better than Ackerman
Bennett at his best is definitely better than Ackerman, but Ackerman is younger and much more consistent. Trek probably would be good for Ackerman as a Nizzolo replacement, could also offer something at Di Data as a replacement for Cavendish. CCC or even Sunweb may want a big bunch sprinter for races they don't take GVA or Matthews to.
 
happytramp said:
I wonder are Bora re-evaluating their plans after the last couple weeks? ☺
I doubt it. Bennett’s problem there has never been speed or sprinting ability or form. It’s that the team have three world class sprinters and the other two have advantages for the team that have nothing to do with their relative sprinting level - Sagan is both much more than a sprinter and the team’s meal ticket, Ackermann is German and under contract for two years. Even if the team were to give him the Giro “back”, he would still probably leave next year as he’s just too fast to accept playing second fiddle to Sagan much longer. So it would be unwise for the team to antagonize Ackermann who will be number 2 in 2020.

Feeling like he has to put himself in the shop window hasn’t done him any harm so far. I expect him to keep his head down, keep winning, win some Vuelta stages and then make a big money move to a team where he will be the undisputed leader.
 
I note that Bennett is not getting a full leadout or even a dedicated final lead out man so far this year. He’s getting dropped off near the front and then left to his own devices as he often was when Bora were a smaller team. That may not be by choice, given the number of top sprinters at Bora, but it is probably a good thing for his longer term career if it means that he learns to position himself better. He did a nice bit of wheel surfing in his Paris Nice win today, first slipping in ahead of Ewan onto the wheel of Kristoff, then nipping in ahead of Groenewegen onto the Dutchman’s leadout’s wheel. He absolutely would not have been capable of pulling that kind of thing off two year’s ago.
 
Re:

Zinoviev Letter said:
I note that Bennett is not getting a full leadout or even a dedicated final lead out man so far this year. He’s getting dropped off near the front and then left to his own devices as he often was when Bora were a smaller team. That may not be by choice, given the number of top sprinters at Bora, but it is probably a good thing for his longer term career if it means that he learns to position himself better. He did a nice bit of wheel surfing in his Paris Nice win today, first slipping in ahead of Ewan onto the wheel of Kristoff, then nipping in ahead of Groenewegen onto the Dutchman’s leadout’s wheel. He absolutely would not have been capable of pulling that kind of thing off two year’s ago.
Baska seems to be his dedicated leadout rider this year, with Ackermann getting Selig, and then he also got great leadouts by Sagan earlier so its not like he has not been getting good dedicated leadouts. It actually seems a bit like Bora feels a little bad towards him, due to his unlucky 3. sprinter-position despite him being world class, so they have been trying extra hard for Bennett. I don't know why Baska is not also in Paris-Nice, but Schwarzmann and Drucker is not so bad on paper, but normal leadouts have just been affected a lot by all the wind most of all.
 
Jun 2, 2016
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Zinoviev Letter said:
happytramp said:
I wonder are Bora re-evaluating their plans after the last couple weeks? ☺
I doubt it. Bennett’s problem there has never been speed or sprinting ability or form. It’s that the team have three world class sprinters and the other two have advantages for the team that have nothing to do with their relative sprinting level - Sagan is both much more than a sprinter and the team’s meal ticket, Ackermann is German and under contract for two years. Even if the team were to give him the Giro “back”, he would still probably leave next year as he’s just too fast to accept playing second fiddle to Sagan much longer. So it would be unwise for the team to antagonize Ackermann who will be number 2 in 2020.

Feeling like he has to put himself in the shop window hasn’t done him any harm so far. I expect him to keep his head down, keep winning, win some Vuelta stages and then make a big money move to a team where he will be the undisputed leader.
Bora is not the kind of team to change their plans. It's rather the full contrary. Plans are decided before the beginning of the season and they stick to them.
For exemple, one could wonder why Schachmann isn't riding Tirreno with a perfect course for him, while Formolo or Majka with fewer chances to get a result are. The reason is it was planned so early in the year.

Moreover Ackermann won 1 out of the 4 sprints he did. That's not awful :D
No reason to think he won't be able to be competitive in the Giro.

And anyway as things have been decided they make sense in fact. Sure, the Giro has more value than the Vuelta. But what about the rest of the calendar?
Bennett has not much to complain about. San Juan, UAE, Paris Nice, Milan San Remo, Turkey, Francfort, Dauphiné, Vuelta. Pretty decent I'd say :D
And definitely more prestigious than Ackermann's races: Majorque, Murcia, Almeria, Algarve, Het Volk, Kuurne, Nokere, Handzame, La Panne, Scheldeprijs for the first half of the season, it's less glamorous than Bennett's calendar. Same for the fall. If Hamburg and Deutschland Tour will be important for Ackermann, it would not have interested Bennett at all.
The interests of both riders have been taken into account. And the result appears to be pretty satisfying.

The bigger picture is really important here since it shows that in fact all of that is quite well-balanced and makes fully sense ;)
 
Jun 2, 2016
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MADRAZO said:
Zinoviev Letter said:
I note that Bennett is not getting a full leadout or even a dedicated final lead out man so far this year. He’s getting dropped off near the front and then left to his own devices as he often was when Bora were a smaller team. That may not be by choice, given the number of top sprinters at Bora, but it is probably a good thing for his longer term career if it means that he learns to position himself better. He did a nice bit of wheel surfing in his Paris Nice win today, first slipping in ahead of Ewan onto the wheel of Kristoff, then nipping in ahead of Groenewegen onto the Dutchman’s leadout’s wheel. He absolutely would not have been capable of pulling that kind of thing off two year’s ago.
Baska seems to be his dedicated leadout rider this year, with Ackermann getting Selig, and then he also got great leadouts by Sagan earlier so its not like he has not been getting good dedicated leadouts. It actually seems a bit like Bora feels a little bad towards him, due to his unlucky 3. sprinter-position despite him being world class, so they have been trying extra hard for Bennett. I don't know why Baska is not also in Paris-Nice, but Schwarzmann and Drucker is not so bad on paper, but normal leadouts have just been affected a lot by all the wind most of all.
Bennett is a very smart sprinter. When he's fully confident in himself, it's beautiful to watch!
His spécial is to take the wheel of the sprinter he considers as the main one and to stick to it until time cas come to win.
The two perfect examples are his win in the UAE where he decided to follow closely the duo Kristoff-favoris and even more noticeably his win during the last Giro where he stayed the last full 3km in the wheel of Viviani before taking the win in front of the Italian.

Bennett can do by himself, he's really good at that.

And anyways, Bora has only one capable leadout guy (ok, Sagan too but he doesn't count :D ), Selig. He's been given to Ackermann since last year (not really by first choice, but rather because it proved to work very well when they raced together last year).
The German duo was great last year, it made sense to keep it together.

Back to Bennett, since no one is good enough to lead hum out on a WT level (Baska is pointless at a WT level, Schwarzmann, Drucker or Pfingsten are not good at being the leadout, today was one more example of how useless Drucker was as last rider), what matters in fact is to protect Bennett and bring him in the position he wants at the flamme rouge. A job Pfingsten is excellent at. The guy is great at positionning. Drucker can alsobe very useful in such a role (working between the last 5km and the flamme rouge).
Pfingsten will be Bennett's man this year. Drucker will also often race with Bennett.
In the less competitivr races (Turkey comes to mind), Baska will also join Bennett's guard. (I dont see how it will help since the association with Bennett proved not To work at all in San Juan and UAE but why not)

Exactly like with the race schedule, I truly believe Bora has done a great job regarding the share of the manpower between the three sprinters according to their needs.
Sagan (who doesn't use a leadout) has his guard made of Oss, Bodnar and Burghardt.
Ackermann has Selig as last man and Schillinger to protect him. (+Schwarzmann)
And Bennett has Pfingsten, Drucker and Baska. For Bennett's crew there is still some work in progress but he has the manpower. My opinion is a classic leadout will fail and does not correspond to Bennett's qualities (or the qualities of his guys). The best thing to do is to protect him and to position him in the wheel where he wants to be for the sprint. And then, there will be just to let the magic happen!
 
Beobachter said:
And anyway as things have been decided they make sense in fact. Sure, the Giro has more value than the Vuelta. But what about the rest of the calendar?
Bennett has not much to complain about. San Juan, UAE, Paris Nice, Milan San Remo, Turkey, Francfort, Dauphiné, Vuelta. Pretty decent I'd say :D
I agree with this. There is, at least so far, no indication that this is a Mitchelton Scott / Caleb Ewan sort of situation. Bora have favored Ackermann in GT choice, but they have not taken the view that because they have antagonized Bennett in that way that they may as well cut their losses and just give him the leftover races. They are giving him a good calendar outside of the GTs, including allowing him to ride MSR.
 
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
 
Mar 26, 2017
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happytramp said:
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
Not everything is about form and results. Plus the decision has been made before we knew what the form of Ackermann and Sagan was going to be.
 
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Screecher said:
happytramp said:
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
Not everything is about form and results. Plus the decision has been made before we knew what the form of Ackermann and Sagan was going to be.
You would think a good team would have enough flexibility to change their plans if situation like that arises. The decision clearly looks to be wrong unless BORA have other priorities than maximising their results and being fair to their riders.
 
Re: Re:

Screecher said:
happytramp said:
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
Not everything is about form and results. Plus the decision has been made before we knew what the form of Ackermann and Sagan was going to be.
Exactly. That's what's so unfortunate about it.
 
Jun 2, 2016
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Anderis said:
Screecher said:
happytramp said:
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
Not everything is about form and results. Plus the decision has been made before we knew what the form of Ackermann and Sagan was going to be.
You would think a good team would have enough flexibility to change their plans if situation like that arises. The decision clearly looks to be wrong unless BORA have other priorities than maximising their results and being fair to their riders.
Actually, they are fair to their riders (re what I wrote upper regarding their races calendar ;) ). To justify a change of plans it would have needed an injured or completely out of form Ackermann. Ackermann admittedly doesn't look as great as last year, but still he does the job. Him not being at the very top of his form makes sense since he's aiming for the Giro. On the contrary, the main goal for Bennett was Paris-Nice (and MSR); him looking more in form then is completely logical.
It doesn't make sense to compare current forms of both riders precisely because they were not aiming for the same races.
Currently, there is absolutely no reason to ditch Ackermann out of the Giro. There would be if for example Ackermann would happen to crash at the Tour of the Alps or Francfort or to get sick, that would be the only good reason.

About fairness:
Bora just recruited back Archbold (even though he offers very few garanties regarding his current level). I would say it"s more than fair from them towards Bennett since Archbold is a close friend of the Irish and will be fully at the service of Bennett ;)

About change of plans:
- it's worth noting that Bennett will eventually go to Romandie instead of Francfort. If the move is firstly about practical reasons (not many injured riders for Bora), it still favors Bennett since it will give him two opportunities of victory (instead of just one) and more time to work his automatisms with his new leadout man Archbold
 
Re: Re:

Beobachter said:
Anderis said:
Screecher said:
happytramp said:
It's so unfortunate for him to be left out of both the Giro and The Tour behind riders that he's clearly in better form than right now... Hard to see it happening on literally any other team. One maybe, but both?... That's seriously unlucky.
Not everything is about form and results. Plus the decision has been made before we knew what the form of Ackermann and Sagan was going to be.
You would think a good team would have enough flexibility to change their plans if situation like that arises. The decision clearly looks to be wrong unless BORA have other priorities than maximising their results and being fair to their riders.
Actually, they are fair to their riders (re what I wrote upper regarding their races calendar ;) ). To justify a change of plans it would have needed an injured or completely out of form Ackermann. Ackermann admittedly doesn't look as great as last year, but still he does the job. Him not being at the very top of his form makes sense since he's aiming for the Giro. On the contrary, the main goal for Bennett was Paris-Nice (and MSR); him looking more in form then is completely logical.
It doesn't make sense to compare current forms of both riders precisely because they were not aiming for the same races.
Currently, there is absolutely no reason to ditch Ackermann out of the Giro. There would be if for example Ackermann would happen to crash at the Tour of the Alps or Francfort or to get sick, that would be the only good reason.

About fairness:
Bora just recruited back Archbold (even though he offers very few garanties regarding his current level). I would say it"s more than fair from them towards Bennett since Archbold is a close friend of the Irish and will be fully at the service of Bennett ;)

About change of plans:
- it's worth noting that Bennett will eventually go to Romandie instead of Francfort. If the move is firstly about practical reasons (not many injured riders for Bora), it still favors Bennett since it will give him two opportunities of victory (instead of just one) and more time to work his automatisms with his new leadout man Archbold
I mostly agree.

Ackermann is very fast and in my view will win at least two Giro stages. I think Bennett is better, but it’s not some huge gulf (and the German is younger). Ackermann has not been bad this year. They will not suddenly pull him from his season’s goal and deeply alienate him.

Bora have made a decision about GT allocations which almost certainly wasn’t based entirely on sporting considerations. That’s unfortunate from Bennett’s point of view (and from a sentimental point of view, as he came up with the team). But as I said above they are so far making every effort to give him a good calendar outside of the GTs and signing Archbold does look like an obvious gesture towards him.
 
Staying at Bora might also be his best option to continue to win races. The team seems to be a good environment for him and leaving that environment for a new team is no guarantee for future success. Add on the added pressure of really having to perform and that he would probably be the main guy and top sprinter on a new team. If that whats he wants to be and probably getting paid a little bit more then he should go for it, but sometimes the grass isnt always greener was my main point.
 
Bennett would be crazy to stay at Bora - Bora had every chance to develop Bennett as a classics rider in 2019, especially seeing he has the characteristics to be decent in this type of racing.
 

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