Tour de France 2019

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Valv.Piti said:
Red Rick said:
Põhja Konn said:
Talking about stage design, with Pinot and even Alaphilippe emerging as serious yellow jersey contenders, and Bernal announcing himself as the man to beat from now on, it could take some time, before they give us a Tour so heavy on high-altitude climbing.
That would be a shame, cause I actually liked the effect it had on the racing. Like if you put the Iseran 1000m lower it's kind of an average climb.

Peguere + Prat d'Albis was great though.
Dont think Iseran is an average climb from Bonneval-sur-Arc, the average gradients are kind of deceiving. I think the relatively hard run in which was raced extremely hard was crucial, and yes, obviously altitude also played a factor. All those things along with Tignes not being a particularly hard climb, and Bernal and Ineos needing to crack Alaf, meant that it without a doubt was the best climb in the Tour.
On another note, I dont think we can blame the altitude on the cancellation at all. Shouldn't discourage Prudhomme for using a climb like this more often, especially in this setup as the penultimate climb.
It is probably one of the easiest ones on that altitude, apart from Galibier south, I guess some versions of Sierra Nevada if you want to count that.

The Tour could really make better use of the more southern Alps, which are better used by the Giro than the Tour. They don't even need to use too many of them, they just need to use them well.
 
Sep 4, 2017
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It seems I am in the minority by loving the super short mountain stage design last year. The biggest problem with the mountain stages in the Tour are the geography as the big mountains are separated by too much flat valley road that often means the domestiques catch back up on the descent and valley thus neutering most longer range attacks.

I do still think there is a place for the 240km 7 hour suffer fest up and down 4 or more cat 1 and HC climbs.
 
Jul 20, 2019
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tour is starting in the southern Alps next year.

Wonder if stages 1 and 2 will be the only Alpine stages or will the tour add a couple of more, either stages 3 and 4 or if they will make two trips to the Alps. Did not make 2 trips to the Pyrenees in 1992
 
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hayneplane said:
It seems I am in the minority by loving the super short mountain stage design last year. The biggest problem with the mountain stages in the Tour are the geography as the big mountains are separated by too much flat valley road that often means the domestiques catch back up on the descent and valley thus neutering most longer range attacks.

I do still think there is a place for the 240km 7 hour suffer fest up and down 4 or more cat 1 and HC climbs.
I don't mind them just not every year.
 
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hayneplane said:
It seems I am in the minority by loving the super short mountain stage design last year. The biggest problem with the mountain stages in the Tour are the geography as the big mountains are separated by too much flat valley road that often means the domestiques catch back up on the descent and valley thus neutering most longer range attacks.

I do still think there is a place for the 240km 7 hour suffer fest up and down 4 or more cat 1 and HC climbs.
The entire purpose of a short mountain stage is useless if you finish on an HC climb. Another problem is that the Tour now does half it's mountain stages under 140km so at some point some are bound to be decent by accident.

I am also not saying every Tour should have 3 7hour mountain stages, but I would like if the average mountain stage stayed around 180km. And you don't need 3 HC climbs to make a huge stage, it's placement that matters. For example Mur de Peguere+Prat d'Albis is 2 cat 1s that are gonna make most stages pretty great. There's huge climbs like Agnel+Izoard that really don't need much else. But one major issue that the Tour has is always sticking to the same climbs, including Alpe d'Huez meaning every single climb before Alpe d'Huez is neutered which sometimes are like 30% of the HC climbs in the entire race.
 
I maintain that Alpe d' Huez is one of the best MTFs in cycling. You often climb big mammoths beforehand which makes the riders tired in the bottom of Alpe d' Huez. Its basically the perfect finishing climb, 13-14 km is long enough to create good gaps, but the kicker is its steepest in the bottom. Sure, there's a decent amount of valley from Galibier or Croix de Fer (or Ornon, if you want an easier MTF), but the purpose of these climbs beforehand isn't necessarily to make the GC-riders attack on them, rather just tire them out which means the Alpe will be much more selective.

Funny story, I rode the Alpe at 55 min 2 days before La Marmotte in a small race, basically just a Alpe d' Huez TT. I finished 2 minutes down on my friend. 2 days after, I climbed Alpe in 1.25 min and finished almost an hour down on him. Thats why Val Thorens was so shitty as it was, for example, at why Alpe d' Huez can be brutal if the climbs beforehand are climbed relatively hard.
 
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Valv.Piti said:
I maintain that Alpe d' Huez is one of the best MTFs in cycling. You often climb big mammoths beforehand which makes the riders tired in the bottom of Alpe d' Huez. Its basically the perfect finishing climb, 13-14 km is long enough to create good gaps, but the kicker is its steepest in the bottom. Sure, there's a decent amount of valley from Galibier or Croix de Fer (or Ornon, if you want an easier MTF), but the purpose of these climbs beforehand isn't necessarily to make the GC-riders attack on them, rather just tire them out which means the Alpe will be much more selective.

Funny story, I rode the Alpe at 55 min 2 days before La Marmotte in a small race, basically just a Alpe d' Huez TT. I finished 2 minutes down on my friend. 2 days after, I climbed Alpe in 1.25 min and finished almost an hour down on him. Thats why Val Thorens was so ****** as it was, for example, at why Alpe d' Huez can be brutal if the climbs beforehand are climbed relatively hard.
I'm not saying it's a bad climb. I just dislike the way it's often used. The Tour tends to do that with many of their best climbs.

I'm starting to come down from the idea that more climbing is always better, cause riders are very often more passive when fatigued. Optimizing the placement of the climbs is more important imo.

Lastly I also think I like having an ITT as a final GC stage much more than a big MTF.
 

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