Tour de France 2020 | Stage 4 (Sisteron – Orcières-Merlette, 160.5 km)

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Not unusual if you peak too early. Obviously he was hanging on in the third week. He looked much better in the Vuelta. At the moment no GC contender will out sprint him at the end of a mountains stage so he should continue to pick up bonuses. Valverde has finally begun to show signs of deterioration. Carapaz will continue to struggle in the first half of the race probably as he was meant to be peaking for the Giro.
Very good call.
 
Congratulations to Primož Roglič, for winning stage 4. Pogačar finishing second brings back good memories, from La Vuelta 2019 and nationals 2020. Wout van Aert and Sepp Kuss did a great job. Jan Polanc is proving to be a valuable domestique for Pogačar. I don't necessarily feel Alaphilippe is in worse shape, compared to last year. What is different is Roglič is participating this year. To me this was a good stage, especially at the end, as expected. We got to see a lot of tactical games and favorites under pressure, to not lose time. A lot of teams reveled their main strategy today. For JV i slightly worry about them taking yellow too early and wasting more energy, then needed, before week 3. On the other hand, they can accumulate a rather substantial time advantage, on such stages, as seen today. In addition i still feel Roglič will perform good in mountains on week 3.

P.S. Looking forward to stage 6.
Alaphilippe got much better at much harder climbs last year, which is a nightmare omen for a puncheur like him.
 
Carapaz gets a bit of a pass. He and Soler had no clue they were racing the Tour until about a week to a few days before the Tour. They both were preparing for the Giro.
It wasn't a criticism of the rider as such more an observation that his role is unlikely now to develop beyond super domestique as if he keeps shedding time the other big teams wont have to keep him on such a short leash if he tries to get up the road..
 
Okay, I get it, Rick doesn't like Alaphilippe and CA only loves the Slovenian Riders... :cocktail:Come on guys, be a little bit serious...

Alaphilippe still has the punch and even without the Jumblebees Ineos would not have brought Froome and Thomas.
 
I like the French riders, but if the French media dare to not talk about Pogacar it would be great if he won the whole thing!

Really, it's incredible how biased the media in all the countries are. Sure they want to sell their stuff, but how can journalists be so f** ignorant and nationalistic? (I'm assuming that's it and not just oblivion?)
Even if they weren't fanboys, they still have to cater to their audience. And 9 out of 10 French want to hear about the French. Same with the other major cycling nations. Their network gets paid by the views, and you get more views if you talk about what your viewers want to hear. Ofcourse, that doesn't necessarily mean you can't talk about anything else, but as a general rule, commentators will be biased.
 
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Even if they weren't fanboys, they still have to cater to their audience. And 9 out of 10 French want to hear about the French. Same with the other major cycling nations. Their network gets paid by the views, and you get more views if you talk about what your viewers want to hear. Ofcourse, that doesn't necessarily mean you can't talk about anything else, but as a general rule, commentators will be biased.
Yes, but I think they are really making it easy for themselves and in the process they are not only not respecting other people's performances, but also pushing a nationalistic agenda. (I am German and once had sports history as a topic in my final examination, so forgive me if I'm being sensitive here.)
I think there are other ways by which even the individual commentator and the individual journalist can draw people's attention towards the sport itself or riders of several countries.
I mean, there are two reasons people root for their "own" athletes: 1. They identify the athlete's strength with a nation's strength and hence feel stronger themselves. That's a feeling nobody should push, in my opinion. 2. They just know more about them, have gotten used to them, know their stories and have heard them in interviews, so they identify more with them. This can be done with athletes of other countries as well. They can tell stories about them, show pictures, run stories about them and their childhood. It's easy nowadays with our modern media.
I am annoyed that I shall be more interested in Roger Kluge than in Pinot, just because he's German.
I mean I get why they do it. But I do not have much sympathy for them, because if they knew how to tell interesting and touching stories this would not be necessary.
 
Yes, but I think they are really making it easy for themselves and in the process they are not only not respecting other people's performances, but also pushing a nationalistic agenda. (I am German and once had sports history as a topic in my final examination, so forgive me if I'm being sensitive here.)
I think there are other ways by which even the individual commentator and the individual journalist can draw people's attention towards the sport itself or riders of several countries.
I mean, there are two reasons people root for their "own" athletes: 1. They identify the athlete's strength with a nation's strength and hence feel stronger themselves. That's a feeling nobody should push, in my opinion. 2. They just know more about them, have gotten used to them, know their stories and have heard them in interviews, so they identify more with them. This can be done with athletes of other countries as well. They can tell stories about them, show pictures, run stories about them and their childhood. It's easy nowadays with our modern media.
I am annoyed that I shall be more interested in Roger Kluge than in Pinot, just because he's German.
I mean I get why they do it. But I do not have much sympathy for them, because if they knew how to tell interesting and touching stories this would not be necessary.
I'm not excusing the nationalistic sentiments, but rooting for a countryman is simply natural behavior. On Belgian tv, they do talk about other riders a lot, but it's also apparent who they favor and talk about most. One TV commentator/network will be worse than another, and one country might also be worse than another, but basically, stuff like this is to be expected. As long as they don't ignore other riders and give professional and worthwhile views on what is happening you can't really fault them. Obviously, by ignoring other riders, you are not giving an accurate view of what is happening, who is a possible threat etc, so that is "not professional" in my book to begin with.
 
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In regards to some of the criticism of this stage design, I think it was okay for stage 4. As some have mentioned, we have seen what a bigger MTF on Etna can do at this time of a GT (not much more), so really, it is a case of the endurance of a three week race playing just as big a part as the high mountains, in terms of sorting out the GC riders. Making stage 4 harder with more difficult climbs before it wouldn't have done much....just look at stage 2.

What this type of stage 4 does do, is instead of approximately 30 riders believing that they could top 10 the Tour before it (without benefiting from a breakaway), we now have approximately only 20 believing in that possibility, which leads to less potential congestion and crashes in sprint stages with less riders fighting to hold their position (and not lose seconds).

I think that an interesting aspect in recent parcours (particularly the Tour) is that there is a lot less distinction between stages now. 20 years ago, when the riders reached the mountains, they genuinely reached the mountains; which is to say that they would race over proper HC/cat 1 climbs and that stage would maybe even reach 200 kms. But also back then, such a stage was even more significant for the fact that they probably hadn't hauled themselves over anything more than a hill as yet. Nowadays, the difference between the "mountain" stages and the "hilly" stages is a lot less, and maybe that means that it isn't as big a shock for some riders when they do reach the so called high mountains, and as a result time losses are not so great. I don't think that this is merely clinic related.
 
Reactions: Red Rick
Okay, I get it, Rick doesn't like Alaphilippe and CA only loves the Slovenian Riders... :cocktail:Come on guys, be a little bit serious...

Alaphilippe still has the punch and even without the Jumblebees Ineos would not have brought Froome and Thomas.
Ineos was considered to be dominat, before the first encounter with JV. As for Roglič (and Pogačar), sure, i am a bit biased, but when somebody from Italy talks about Pantani, somebody from Spain about Contador, somebody from GB about Froome, somebody from Belgium about Evenepoel ... most of it can still be considered to be objective.

Without Roglič and JV, Alaphilippe would have had an easier job, so far, on this Tour edition.
 
Guys.

I think we're fogetting something here

We're 4 stages in

And Porte hasn't lost any time yet.
You are joking but I remember in 2016 during the Giro people were writing similar comments when they realized Steven Kruijswijk, who people always suspected to shine in the 3rd week, still hadn't lost any time yet.

I'm very much doubting Porte will climb well enough this year to compete for the top spots in Paris but don't be surprised if he ends up finishing somewhere high up in the general classification.
Just remembered this ^^
 

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