Teams & Riders Thibaut Pinot discussion thread

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I suppose it could be interpreted either way. They do use the phrase his level is stable, which - at least to me - indicate that they're talking about, well, basic level-things. However, there is also the mention of need[ing] to recover a little, and I guess that could both mean that he is not quite (or was not quite) at his best level in terms of shape yet, or - unfortunately - that his back still hurts sometimes.

And with all that being said, I don't think - as IndianCyclist seems to imply - that he'll break his contract, and quit early. However, I could see a situation where his current contract (running to the end of 2023) ends up being his last, I'd hope not, but I wouldn't be overly shocked.
Must every other word really be highlighted in some way?
Bit old news, but... yeah...

Thibaut Pinot casts doubt on Giro d'Italia appearance | Cyclingnews

I honestly think that's a good thing. Not that his back injury lingers, obviously, but that he won't ride the Giro if it isn't in order.
And now for some non-Pinot speculation; what kind of squad could FDJ bring to the Giro if they don't have a main GC guy or sprinter? According to PCS their other riders scheduled for the race are; Molard, Valter, Ludvigsson, Duchesne, Armirail, and Reichenbach. Then of course they'd need two more, and I guess we can rule out the guys on the Tour-squad, and of course there are races overlapping with the Giro.
I like Pinot but what sort of mouthbreather rides a whole TdF in the gruppetto for no reasin with a serious back injury.
Someone who wants to overcome a reputation as the guy who always abandons GTs, and who literally lives on the route of one of the stages. Wonder if they could've convinced him to leave if it hadn't been for that ITT, and that's the darkest irony of it all, isn't it? The route - and in particular the TT - was in many ways seen as ASO doing Pinot a favour; the only TT being not only up a mountain, but practically in his backyard, ended up being somewhat of a disfavour to him, because it was practically in his backyard. Though, I suppose if they'd known at the time that he actually a fracture then he might have gone home, but certainly; Craddock rode an entire Tour with broken back once, if I'm not mistaken.
So, yeah, I can fully understand that he wanted to finish the Tour, starting the Vuelta otoh, was - in the clear light of hindsight - a mistake. So, too, was leaving it as late as he did before getting those cortisone shots. Sure, he didn't want to take them when he had upcoming races, because he felt that would be borderline cheating, but imagine if he'd gotten them straight after the Tour, and then just... stopped his season right then. Even with the schedule he ended up following - starting the Vuelta, and leaving after two days - he could still have gotten the shots right after that, especially since (I guess) it was getting pretty clear that he wasn't going to race any more races after that.

Basically last year he made the mistake of not only finishing the Tour - understandably, given the circumstances listed above - but also starting the Vuelta while not at 100%, he is not making that same mistake this year in regards to the Giro! Would be awesome if he's ready to ride, but I'm not too optimistic. Instead get some rest, start riding some smaller races, and prepare for the Vuelta, or - maybe even better - peak for the Italian Fall Classics; he's got an okay record in those.
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^^I think it's more of a ... if he doesn't fix what's wrong now he's probably going to end up like poor Aru or Froome. I hate to say it but he might want to stop this season now and see if he can come back for the Vuelta or just wait till 2022. No way he should be be just riding around in the Tour of the Alps.
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Hopefully the back felt fine today and he can start finding some form.
He's getting worse.

I know there's all the "my back still hurts" stuff going on, but when I see Dan Martin busting his guts & legs riding today, the comparison is jarring & with regards to Thibaut Pinot I have my own opinion on the matter & I'm inclined to believe his problem is more mental than physical.

Because the physical "I have an injury" stuff would entail FDJ are perpetually placing an injured rider in races & I really, really do not believe their doctors & specialists are incompetent idiots.
If it's still his back causing those problems, I honestly don't see him returning to his old level again. He should definitely stop riding now and focus on his back problems and then I agree with the poster who said he should focus on the Vuelta and the Italian classics where he has the highest chance of getting good results anyway.
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