Tour de France 2020 | Stage 6 (Le Teil - Mont Aigoual, 191 km)

Page 28 - Get up to date with the latest news, scores & standings from the Cycling News Community.
Au contraire, a lot of us didn't expect 35km of all out action, but we would have liked to at least feel like the riders were trying. The 10-15 men at the top of the Lusette because of a tough tempo suggested by netserk a page or so ago would not have felt unreasonable, it's a week 1 mountain stage, we want to sort the contenders from the pretenders. Not meaning to pick on them, but Mikaël Cherel is not a GC contender and should not still be in the bunch at the top of the Col de la Lusette if the big teams are working, and Greg van Avermaet should not be riding in the best part of a minute ahead of the bunch from a breakaway that had less than 3 minutes if they're riding even at 80%.

Funny that, because every time we criticise the race route, there's a huge number of "the riders make the race" posts. This year ASO have done everything they can to stop the race being a one-week showdown, but the riders don't want to race it. That's not the organisers' fault.

As I mentioned a while back to Salvarani, if today was the Peyresourde stage I'd understand it more, because chaining too many heavy mountain stages always tends to neuter the first one, which therefore usually needs to be on a steep MTF that will create gaps automatically as a result (you know the sort. Zoncolan types are a bit much at this point in the race, but a Peña Cabarga, Urkiola, dare I even say it, but Planche des Belles Filles type) in order to give some kind of racing; but today is a flat stage. The mountain domestiques can have a day off on the bike to recover for the weekend, so riding Lusette like cyclotourists (not the Col des Cyclotouristes) makes less sense as a strategy. At the very least there was the justification for a stage racing Tom Boonen to test people's legs on a stage racing Taaienberg.
The riders make the race before the race happens on a bad route, and when they don't race a potentially decent route, then it was really a bad route.

Route wise the more I think about it the more I hate the 2 hardest stages also being the 2 main MTFs at stage 15 and 17 in the race. Backloading MTFs and underTTing is the worst.
 
Reactions: gregrowlerson
I just think Roglic is just biding his time. He knows if he can stay amongst all his competitors until the ITT he just has to beat his team mate. I'm not so sure about Bernal at the moment, I think he needs to show something soon to give JV something to think about. I thought Aru did an amazing impersonation of Contador yesterday, bravo!
 
Funny that, because every time we criticise the race route, there's a huge number of "the riders make the race" posts. This year ASO have done everything they can to stop the race being a one-week showdown, but the riders don't want to race it. That's not the organisers' fault.
I disagree. It’s a very backloaded route with the only ITT in the end with a mountain in it, meaning no incentive to take risks. Pyrenees are the weakest since 1992. Orcieres was designed as a sprint and the loop with Eze to make that stage what it was, racing only on the last climb with favourites hiding. Only hope is echelons on stage 10.

The design is all about a tight gc with favourites in front and in ‘action’ every other stage without creating any gaps that would kill the oh so holy suspense until Loze the gimmick.
 
Last edited:
Reactions: Gigs_98
The riders make the race before the race happens on a bad route, and when they don't race a potentially decent route, then it was really a bad route.

Route wise the more I think about it the more I hate the 2 hardest stages also being the 2 main MTFs at stage 15 and 17 in the race. Backloading MTFs and underTTing is the worst.
Shouldn't even have to think about it! :laughing:
 
I think the key is to make a week 1 where you force the riders to show their cards. Short and steep climbs like Planche des Belles Filles works good for this purpose. Also a short 25-30k ITT would be good.
Pretty much. Doesn't need to be a MTF, but shorter and steeper is the way to go in week one. Crank out the main MTFs in week 2, no bigger MTF than a moderate cat 1 in week 3 and you're golden.

But nah they had to get people talking all year about Col de La Loze, WHICH BY THE WAY IS PERFECTLY VIABLE AS A PASS.
 
Reactions: gregrowlerson
Actually Nibali would be such an improvement in this Tour, just for the fear of Mythical Third Week Squalo that everyone and their mother would be attacking balls out on the first nanometer of Lusette to drop Nibs on a pseudo Unipuerto stage.
 
What can possibly save this Tour:
Imagine 10 guys within 2 minutes and 15 guys within 5 minutes after stage 17. Then Quintana, Landa, Bardet etc go balls deep on first mountain at stage 18.

It would be the thing we always dream of, but we never see.
 
The simple reality is that bike racing is typically at its most fun when the difference is made by winners actively being faster than others ie taking risks and attacking off the front and less fun when the difference making comes by what is perceived as losers being slower ie being ground off the back by a train.

Yesterday was a day that could have had the former but didn't even have the latter and as a result was clearly a real disappointment in the way it was ridden. At the least a finale like that would typically have been ridden to cull the herd and potentially catch out whichever fringe GC contender was on a bad day.

I don't think there's anyone regular on this forum who doesn't appreciate the nuances and sheer stress of a 21 day race but that doesn't mean that people shouldn't be allowed to be disappointed when there seems to be a real dearth of riding to win.

We'll hope for the weekend to explode things - the nice thing about cycling is that a single stage being raced well can rewrite the race narrative.
 
Actually Nibali would be such an improvement in this Tour, just for the fear of Mythical Third Week Squalo that everyone and their mother would be attacking balls out on the first nanometer of Lusette to drop Nibs on a pseudo Unipuerto stage.
Imagine Nibali winning the 2015 Tour because why attacking in LPSM when there are still so many much harder mountain stages to come
 
I disagree. It’s a very backloaded route with the only ITT in the end with a mountain in it, meaning no incentive to take risks. Pyrenees are the weakest since 1992. Orcieres was designed as a sprint and the loop with Eze to make that stage what it was, racing only on the last climb with favourites hiding. Only hope is echelons on stage 10.

The design is all about a tight gc with favourites in front and in ‘action’ every other stage without creating any gaps that would kill the oh so holy suspense until Loze the gimmick.
Again I completely agree. I was one of the naive optimists really liking the Tour route this year because it offered so much new.
The Turini on stage 2? Sounds great.
A 1st category mountain top finish on stage 4? Even better.
The Col de la Lusette with an uphill finish on the Mont Aigoual on stage 6? F*ck yeah.

The thing is, I remember writing that and in the back of my head thinking "you do know it's the first week and it's perfectly possible to softpedal all those stages" but I mostly ignored it. I do think I actually made the comparison with the 2012 Giro route in some thread here but at the time the optimist in me was still shutting down what was probably the realist in me.
 
Reactions: gregrowlerson
Not sure about the Tourmalet attack but he did get dropped on Cauterets which is about all you need to know about early 2015 TdF Nibali.
Wasn't that the stage when he was angry at Vino for saying Fuglsang should be the leader after PSM so he told Scarponi and Kangert to drill it on Tourmalet and Fuglsang lost like 10 minutes?
 
This route is not one that forces selection, with that I agree. It's one that enables riders to attack and take the initiative, but if they don't want to take those opportunities they don't have to.
Of course a lot of factors come into play here. The Corona-break. So many (important) riders crashing shortly before the race or during stage 1. Jumbo taking over as the new Sky, while the real Skys are not yet willing to see themselves as guerilla-fighters. (Movistar in shambles with no clear direction.)

Personally I still think a good, brave showing on several occasions and a stage win is more desirable than 10th or 12th in the GC, but I don't know the marketing numbers.
 
The simple reality is that bike racing is typically at its most fun when the difference is made by winners actively being faster than others ie taking risks and attacking off the front and less fun when the difference making comes by what is perceived as losers being slower ie being ground off the back by a train.

Yesterday was a day that could have had the former but didn't even have the latter and as a result was clearly a real disappointment in the way it was ridden. At the least a finale like that would typically have been ridden to cull the herd and potentially catch out whichever fringe GC contender was on a bad day.

I don't think there's anyone regular on this forum who doesn't appreciate the nuances and sheer stress of a 21 day race but that doesn't mean that people shouldn't be allowed to be disappointed when there seems to be a real dearth of riding to win.

We'll hope for the weekend to explode things - the nice thing about cycling is that a single stage being raced well can rewrite the race narrative.
I think this a good post and describes it much better, than another poster did yesterday. Who maybe is letting his/hers emotions and own expectations of what a race should be like, as a fan, get in the way. What I´m saying it was maybe an overreation on what happened. Than just being disappointed, that there was no action. Who I think every regular was. At the same you have to have the perspective of the tactics behind yesterday, that is a part of the sport. Whether you absolutely hate it sometimes, or understand it.
 
Reactions: Carols

ASK THE COMMUNITY