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Tommeke, The Greatest Cobblestone Rider of All Time?

Page 5 - Get up to date with the latest news, scores & standings from the Cycling News Community.
Yep, the final 50k are stacked with tough hills and you have very little time to recover in between. It's much more than just Oude Kwaremont vs Muur. Kwaremont and Paterberg twice with also Koppenberg in between are deadly. This of course heavily favours guys like Sagan and GVA.

On the old route, you had pretty soft climbs like Leberg and Tenbosse deep in the finale and you would often see riders/groups coming back.
 
The different profiles:

2010: http://www.wielerwedstrijden.com/bestanden/2010/ronde_van_vlaanderen_profiel.jpg

2012: http://06.live-radsport.ch/images/12021419880-hoehenprofil-ronde-van-vlaanderen-2012.jpg

2016: http://cdn.touretappe.nl/images/ronde-van-vlaanderen/2016/profiel.jpg

In 2010 the combo of Kwaremont/Paterberg/Koppenberg/Steenbeekdries/Taaienberg was from ~85km out to ~65km out. (3 climbs before the combo)

In 2016 the combo of Kwaremont/Paterberg/Koppenberg/Steenbeekdries/Taaienberg was from ~55km out to ~35km out. (10 climbs before the combo)
 
Aug 6, 2015
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The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all
 
Re:

portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
 
Re:

portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all
Sagan has never proved himself at Paris-Roubaix though. 6th is his best result, while at RVV he had had a podium and couple of other good results before his win. Sagan is definitely a favourite but I don't know if he is the man to beat. That may actually fall, depending on form when the time comes, to Tommeke
 
Re: Re:

frisenfruitig said:
portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
Indeed, portugal being clueless as always. If there's one thing he has, its a big engine.
 
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Re: Re:

Valv.Piti said:
frisenfruitig said:
portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
Indeed, portugal being clueless as always. If there's one thing he has, its a big engine.
If he had a big engine he would kept the gap to boonen after carrefour de l'arbre
 
Re: Re:

Valv.Piti said:
frisenfruitig said:
portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
Indeed, portugal being clueless as always. If there's one thing he has, its a big engine.
Nope; the majority of the forum decided that a big engine was the exact thing he needed, but lacked. He has the short acceleration and great cobble skills (shown when he momentarily dropped Boonen last year) but can keep it going for not even a kilometre before he collapses in a heap.
 
Re: Re:

Brullnux said:
Valv.Piti said:
frisenfruitig said:
portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
Indeed, portugal being clueless as always. If there's one thing he has, its a big engine.
Nope; the majority of the forum decided that a big engine was the exact thing he needed, but lacked. He has the short acceleration and great cobble skills (shown when he momentarily dropped Boonen last year) but can keep it going for not even a kilometre before he collapses in a heap.
If you are consistently in the hunt for the cobbled monuments despite a mediocre acceleration compared to the opposition, you have a big engine.
 
Momentarily? Yeah right. First of all, his attack lasted 5km, second of all, 3 strong guys were working together just perfectly to close the gap.

His cobble skills are indeed better relative to his engine, but how many riders would have made that move stick until the finish??
 
Come on. Vanmarcke was in better form than all of the people behind him, he finished 3rd in RVV. Vanmarcke's engine isn't good enough to win a monument (yet), unfortunately. It isn't bad, but there will always be someone better than him, be it Sagan, Cancellara, Boonen, Terpstra, Degenkolb.

The best would have kept that attack going until the finish. Not many, obviously, but the very best. Vanmarcke isn't one of them, despite the fact he is probably the most smooth and natural over cobbles. Maybe he will improve this year and manage to win, but I am not holding my breath. I'd love for him to prove me wrong; he has often been very unlucky in the past too.
 
Re:

Brullnux said:
Come on. Vanmarcke was in better form than all of the people behind him, he finished 3rd in RVV. Vanmarcke's engine isn't good enough to win a monument (yet), unfortunately. It isn't bad, but there will always be someone better than him, be it Sagan, Cancellara, Boonen, Terpstra, Degenkolb.

The best would have kept that attack going until the finish. Not many, obviously, but the very best. Vanmarcke isn't one of them, despite the fact he is probably the most smooth and natural over cobbles. Maybe he will improve this year and manage to win, but I am not holding my breath. I'd love for him to prove me wrong; he has often been very unlucky in the past too.

Roubaix is a different race than Flanders. Stannard for example isn't suited at all to the flemish hills so his result there doesn't say very much about his shape.

You're totally dodging the question as to who would have held the gap. Name them? Who can go faster over flat cobbles than 3 obviously strong riders working together and then sustain that effort for 10+ km still against those 3 guys? The best Cancellara and the best Boonen probably, that's it. If that means anyone not as good them lacks an engine, then fair enough.

Btw, he was already very close to win a monument in 2013.
 
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Re: Re:

Brullnux said:
Valv.Piti said:
frisenfruitig said:
portugal11 said:
The man to beat is sagan. I don't know why almost everyone rates vanmarcke higher than sagan. Sagan was very strong last year, he just made a tactical mistake with 90 km to go. Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine and he isn't a tactical masterpiece at all


The thing Vanmarcke lacks is a good sprint and racing intelligence. Wastes his power too much imo. If you are able to contend for the win in PR you have a pretty good engine I'd say.
Indeed, portugal being clueless as always. If there's one thing he has, its a big engine.
Nope; the majority of the forum decided that a big engine was the exact thing he needed, but lacked. He has the short acceleration and great cobble skills (shown when he momentarily dropped Boonen last year) but can keep it going for not even a kilometre before he collapses in a heap.
Thanks mate. 100% right
 
In results it's Boonen. In pure power sometimes you would think Cancellara. But that's really hard to say. If often happened that when Boonen did well, Cancellara was out or when Cancellara did well, Boonen was out due to bad luck.
In earlier stages of their career Boonen was definately stronger in the classics. In the later stages we saw Cancellara beat Boonen head-to-head more often.

Overall.. looking back, I have to say Boonen.
 
Re: Re:

Flamin said:
Brullnux said:
Come on. Vanmarcke was in better form than all of the people behind him, he finished 3rd in RVV. Vanmarcke's engine isn't good enough to win a monument (yet), unfortunately. It isn't bad, but there will always be someone better than him, be it Sagan, Cancellara, Boonen, Terpstra, Degenkolb.

The best would have kept that attack going until the finish. Not many, obviously, but the very best. Vanmarcke isn't one of them, despite the fact he is probably the most smooth and natural over cobbles. Maybe he will improve this year and manage to win, but I am not holding my breath. I'd love for him to prove me wrong; he has often been very unlucky in the past too.

Roubaix is a different race than Flanders. Stannard for example isn't suited at all to the flemish hills so his result there doesn't say very much about his shape.

You're totally dodging the question as to who would have held the gap. Name them? Who can go faster over flat cobbles than 3 obviously strong riders working together and then sustain that effort for 10+ km still against those 3 guys? The best Cancellara and the best Boonen probably, that's it. If that means anyone not as good them lacks an engine, then fair enough.

Btw, he was already very close to win a monument in 2013.
Stannard came thrid in E3, so can do Flemish hills. Besides, his best performance in RVV is better than his best performance in Paris-Roubaix, prior to last year's race. but EBH and Boonen could and have done well at RVV, and just weren't in great form.

Sagan, Cancellara, Boonen (not of 2016, obviously), Terpstra (he managed in 2014 somehow, albeit a shorter attack), Degenkolb (2015 form), GvA (olympics form); and others have managed too, Boom in the Tour stage distanced a few people working well together (obviously wouldn't have in 2016). Vanmarcke doesn't have the engine to win. He lacks it. And that, for him, is the most important thing, since he doesn't sprint. He's never won an important race. 'Close' confirms that (and he was the third strongest anyway that day). And I repeat, Vanmarcke was in much better form than we had ever seen him. He had 3 top 10s in all the 3 important cobbeld races before then, and two podiums. The rest, apart from Stannard, had shown nothing. They weren't that strong either, the likes of Sieberg and Erviti finished only minute down, and Sagan only two, despite missing the crucial split. He's missing that crucial little thing to make him win a monument.
 
Can't compare E3 with de Ronde, obviously. Then I can say he won Omloop twice, which has a lot of flat cobbles. His best performance was in de Ronde prior to 2016? Examples please? I give you Roubaix 2012 where he rode a strong race as a dom.

Boonen wasn't even great in de Ronde in one of his super years (2012), neither was he in 2014 yet pretty damn fine in Roubaix. Of course not at his very best in the last one, but still one of the best in the world. EBH... How was he not in top form? He never did better than this.

Sagan? On flat cobbles and roads? Based on what? Nobody was riding behind Terpstra in 2014. Sep also would have won that. Degenkolb, maybe, though he didn't have to work his *** off to get a 10" gap and cooperation behind was not optimal. Greg? Also, based on what?
 
Re:

Flamin said:
Can't compare E3 with de Ronde, obviously. Then I can say he won Omloop twice, which has a lot of flat cobbles. His best performance was in de Ronde prior to 2016? Examples please? I give you Roubaix 2012 where he rode a strong race as a dom.

Boonen wasn't even great in de Ronde in one of his super years (2012), neither was he in 2014 yet pretty damn fine in Roubaix. Of course not at his very best in the last one, but still one of the best in the world. EBH... How was he not in top form? He never did better than this.

Sagan? On flat cobbles and roads? Based on what? Nobody was riding behind Terpstra in 2014. Sep also would have won that. Degenkolb, maybe, though he didn't have to work his *** off to get a 10" gap and cooperation behind was not optimal. Greg? Also, based on what?
Sagan based on when he outrode Cancellara on the flat, you know, just a week before. Terpstra has won or been good in many 15-20km time trials. GVA has won Paris-Tours solo, with Stannard chasing.

I know you can't compare E3 with Ronde, but it's the closest. I know Stannard is much better on flat, but you underestimate his abilities in the hills too. His performance in Ronde in 2016 was better than any he had in Paris-Roubaix. Stannard was the only other rider in the front group in top form. EBH did nothing until that race. He has had better classics seasons than 2016 (not including Paris-Roubaix, before it) with podiums and top tens in other classics in every year preceding that since 2012.