Tour de France 2020 | Stage 5 (Gap - Privas, 183 km)

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fair enough.

i just don't think the way Van Avermaet has won is in any way comparable to what Van Aert has already shown he can do, and can dominate doing. Van Avermaet is comparable to a Mollema in terms "dominance" in their domains. In fact, I would not describe either of those riders -- good though they may be -- as in anyway dominant. Van Aert can dominate and on more than one domain. I really feel they are in completely different categories.
Is this supposed to be some kind of a joke? 2017 was not so long ago, and he was as dominant back then as this boy is now. Let's wait a bit, I've seen this flashes of dominance from time to time. It rarely lasts long. What comes after will define this young man as a rider.
 
fair enough.

i just don't think the way Van Avermaet has won is in any way comparable to what Van Aert has already shown he can do, and can dominate doing. Van Avermaet is comparable to a Mollema in terms "dominance" in their domains. In fact, I would not describe either of those riders -- good though they may be -- as in anyway dominant. Van Aert can dominate and on more than one domain. I really feel they are in completely different categories.
I dunno man.

Mollema was a lot less lucky to get his biggest win.
 
Reactions: Big Doopie
You are missing my point.

Sure today was incredibly boring, but we have to respect they don't ride for us, they ride to win the race, irrespective of how boring it is.

Nobody has shown up for this Tour in peak condition, because of Corona, so the apprehension is both natural and understandable.

There are plenty of other stages, where teams can spend the strength they have for a result, instead of an exercise in futility on an obvious bunch sprint stage :)
Breaks have been being given less and less time for years now in the Tour. HTC really began this, even Super Mario's train let the break get 7 or 8 minutes but Bob Stapleton's train of misery just had Bert Grabsch and Tony Martin peg the breakaway at 2 minutes for 150k to the point where the people who are paid to make the race sound interesting were slating it publicly. The fact that we have so many over-strong teams and much fewer real wildcards now means that teams are also happier to try to control the race throughout, so we see far fewer instances of the jersey being shipped to a breakaway, and Jesús Herrada's run in the lead of the Vuelta was a bit of a throwback to that. 10-12 years ago it was frequent, even after Óscar Pereiro parlayed it into a Tour win. Rinaldo Nocentini in 2009, Giovanni Visconti in 2008, Thomas Voeckler in 2011, Egoi Martínez in 2008... all examples of a late week 1 or early week 2 break given its day in the sun so the big teams don't have the responsibility of carrying the jersey all the way. Astana 2009 allowed Nocentini that gap but they were a team strong enough to do what we have largely seen since from the likes of Astana for Nibali, Saxo for Contador and Sky for Wiggins and Froome, which is "take the jersey on the first mountain stage then carry it all the way".

At the same time, it's a pretty sad indictment if going in the breakaway is so pointless that even the wildcard teams can't be bothered to get their sponsors' names out there. It was like the women's race in København that people used for literally years as an example of why women's cycling was boring and not worth their time, because there wasn't any artificial 'break of the day' action and it was, indeed, very boring. The break of the day action is usually pretty pointless, yes, but at least there's the pretence of action. With a few people up the road there's some contesting of summits and intermediate sprints. Instead here, Cosnefroy picked up the mountain points unopposed, and the value of the airtime for the sponsors was considered not worth a rider spending an hour or two of their time off the front.

The value of TV time to the sponsors for the smaller teams has always warded off stages like this, historically. Now with every stage broadcast start to finish I guess the teams think they can get airtime elsewhere and by other means. I wouldn't be surprised if this starts happening more, because the value of the intermediates and primes has been eroded, the concentration of all the talent in a smaller number of teams has meant the chances of a miscalculation are hugely reduced compared to years gone by, and the killing off of ProConti as a competitive level (plus a few ProConti teams focusing on sprinters for their results because GC contenders are now off-limits to them) means fewer true baroudeurs in the bunch.
 
Some sprint from Van Aert. Superb form.

Sagan will pick up more sprint points than Bennett when the going gets tough. Am reminded of when Cav was trying to take green and Thor Hushovd decided to get in the break over some big Alpine climbs to take intermediate sprint points. A 'This is how you win green Cav' moment.
There are 2 more stages left (9 and 13) with significant difficulties en-route to the first sprint, and of those I'm not even sure Sagan is climbing well enough to get to the one on the Puy-Mary stage without Bennett close by. If Bennett is all-in for green (and his sprint today seems to indicate that he is) then he can push Sagan all the way to Paris.


I'd prefer he went for stages. I had Sam to win today, so I'm privately raging he decided to just focus on the jersey.
 
Valverde said to the press after today's stage that he's never seen or participated in a race before today that didn't have a breakaway of some sort or another. He also found it strange.

I wouldn't be surprised if Libertine Seguros is correct that this is the first time, but may not be the last time we see this.
 
I just heard on a podcast that Sepp Kuss crashed during today's stage (5). Has anyone else heard that? (Or was it news and I just missed it.) I haven't seen anything about it.
It was shown on the broadcast and they even followed him and gave time differences between him and the peloton till he returned. It didn't seem like anything serious though.
 
Reactions: JosephK
I just heard on a podcast that Sepp Kuss crashed during today's stage (5). Has anyone else heard that? (Or was it news and I just missed it.) I haven't seen anything about it.
I got home with about 15-20 k left (obviously didn't miss much), but in the after race show they showed he had crashed. It didn't look serious but I'm sure he's bruised from it.
 
Reactions: JosephK
I got home with about 15-20 k left (obviously didn't miss much), but in the after race show they showed he had crashed. It didn't look serious but I'm sure he's bruised from it.
If I had paid attention to the broadcast better, I would have seen this. But I'll confess--after about an hour of watching the peloton slowfoot it, I started doing yardwork and only made it back to the broadcast for the final 15 kilometers. -- Didn't stick around for enough post-race, either. My bad! :flushed:
 
If I had paid attention to the broadcast better, I would have seen this. But I'll confess--after about an hour of watching the peloton slowfoot it, I started doing yardwork and only made it back to the broadcast for the final 15 kilometers. -- Didn't stick around for enough post-race, either. My bad! :flushed:
Not a problem. As I said I was working. Had a fun job which resulted in my arm being nicely bruised. The fun of being a vendor. Got home turned the TV on and somewhere along the line they said something about no break at which point I just blankly stared at the TV like, what the heck are you talking about. I certainly don't blame you for doing yard work. It seems today was a good day to be working and not watching the stage.
 
Reactions: JosephK
The value of TV time to the sponsors for the smaller teams has always warded off stages like this, historically. Now with every stage broadcast start to finish I guess the teams think they can get airtime elsewhere and by other means. I wouldn't be surprised if this starts happening more, because the value of the intermediates and primes has been eroded, the concentration of all the talent in a smaller number of teams has meant the chances of a miscalculation are hugely reduced compared to years gone by, and the killing off of ProConti as a competitive level (plus a few ProConti teams focusing on sprinters for their results because GC contenders are now off-limits to them) means fewer true baroudeurs in the bunch.
Also, "TV time" isn't just "TV time"...... it depends what you are actually doing.

Doing something that 99 % of the viewers know is pointless, doesn't exactly reflect well on a brand ;)

On top of that, as you rightly point out, the media market is far more diverse these days, and thus TV isn't all it's cracked up to be anymore, as many sponsors get far more out of SoMe activities than TV time, because it allows them to interact with their target audience.

Anyway - my point still is, I was bored out of my mind during the stage too, but I do understand the sporting perspective, that means teams don't spend energy when it is pointless, so I appreciate the decision, while being bored ;)
 
Aug 17, 2020
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Breaks have been being given less and less time for years now in the Tour. HTC really began this, even Super Mario's train let the break get 7 or 8 minutes but Bob Stapleton's train of misery just had Bert Grabsch and Tony Martin peg the breakaway at 2 minutes for 150k to the point where the people who are paid to make the race sound interesting were slating it publicly. The fact that we have so many over-strong teams and much fewer real wildcards now means that teams are also happier to try to control the race throughout, so we see far fewer instances of the jersey being shipped to a breakaway, and Jesús Herrada's run in the lead of the Vuelta was a bit of a throwback to that. 10-12 years ago it was frequent, even after Óscar Pereiro parlayed it into a Tour win. Rinaldo Nocentini in 2009, Giovanni Visconti in 2008, Thomas Voeckler in 2011, Egoi Martínez in 2008... all examples of a late week 1 or early week 2 break given its day in the sun so the big teams don't have the responsibility of carrying the jersey all the way. Astana 2009 allowed Nocentini that gap but they were a team strong enough to do what we have largely seen since from the likes of Astana for Nibali, Saxo for Contador and Sky for Wiggins and Froome, which is "take the jersey on the first mountain stage then carry it all the way".

At the same time, it's a pretty sad indictment if going in the breakaway is so pointless that even the wildcard teams can't be bothered to get their sponsors' names out there. It was like the women's race in København that people used for literally years as an example of why women's cycling was boring and not worth their time, because there wasn't any artificial 'break of the day' action and it was, indeed, very boring. The break of the day action is usually pretty pointless, yes, but at least there's the pretence of action. With a few people up the road there's some contesting of summits and intermediate sprints. Instead here, Cosnefroy picked up the mountain points unopposed, and the value of the airtime for the sponsors was considered not worth a rider spending an hour or two of their time off the front.

The value of TV time to the sponsors for the smaller teams has always warded off stages like this, historically. Now with every stage broadcast start to finish I guess the teams think they can get airtime elsewhere and by other means. I wouldn't be surprised if this starts happening more, because the value of the intermediates and primes has been eroded, the concentration of all the talent in a smaller number of teams has meant the chances of a miscalculation are hugely reduced compared to years gone by, and the killing off of ProConti as a competitive level (plus a few ProConti teams focusing on sprinters for their results because GC contenders are now off-limits to them) means fewer true baroudeurs in the bunch.
I couldn’t have said it better myself. Ive been feeling like something has been off for the longest time and you nailed it. I used to love seeing that lumbering style of Voeckler defending his yellow jersey. The guy was never a threat to win it in all but he sure kept me interested and he gained a fan. I loved that guy but now you rarely see the big time gaps on breaks and some of these stages are complete snooze fests. The organizers really need to space out the sprint and KOM segements better in order to create some excitement. I’ve gotten to the point where I mark the calendar with mountain top finishes as being must watch stages when before I would be glued to the TV for all the stages since there was at least some semblance of competition.

The only thing you said I disagree with is Pereiro. He didn’t parlay anything, he straight up backed into it.
 
That leadout from Sunweb was fantastic- for Van Aert. It's a hell of an effort to put in for a sprinter who's won stages of the tours of California, Norway and the Algarve.
To be fair they did absolutely nothing wrong and none of the other specialist sprinters got near. They just missed that Wout jumped their train. I did feel a bit bad for Bol.
 
To be fair they did absolutely nothing wrong and none of the other specialist sprinters got near. They just missed that Wout jumped their train. I did feel a bit bad for Bol.
Oh absolutely, the leadout was perfect. It just seems very Sunweb to pull off by far the best leadout we've seen so far, but it's for a sprinter with no major wins.
 

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