Tour de France Tour De France 2021, stage 1 (Brest-Landerneau, 197.8 km)

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His "tactics" are the forum's explanation for when he doesn't win every time he is active (although I don't think anyone cites tactics in his Flanders defeat).

Similar to Super Sagan only loosing when other's fail to cooperate...

It is a handy excuse for fans to still applaud his strength when he doesn't win. It's a supposed weakness critics will try to exploit in predictions. So the topic itself self perpetuates in discussions whether it is true or not...
I'm not a fan of his and I think tactics are his weakness - or better, it looks like he doesn't care, sometimes I think that he thinks that road races are boring anyway, and that he will not subject himself to the rules of this game. :) But it seems to change a bit, and maybe in order to win the yellow jersey he will make an exception anyway...
 
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His "tactics" are the forum's explanation for when he doesn't win every time he is active (although I don't think anyone cites tactics in his Flanders defeat).

Similar to Super Sagan only loosing when other's fail to cooperate...

It is a handy excuse for fans to still applaud his strength when he doesn't win. It's a supposed weakness critics will try to exploit in predictions. So the topic itself self perpetuates in discussions whether it is true or not...
I mostly agree with you, everyone makes mistakes. Sometime you have options and it's not clear in the moment what's best and you take a gamble, let the dice roll.

But in hindsight you can evaluate, and Sagan did lose some races he could have won, M-SR 2017 for example, by being a bit more cold-blooded, or maybe by taking the risk to look like a chump when he gets overtaken by the peloton.

Of course, the more often a racer is leading a race towards the end, the more such mistakes can happen...

It's probably stupid to call guys like Sagan or MVDP stupid (in the race sense at least), but logically some have to be better at that sort of stuff than others, and maybe they aren't top of the top in race tactics. I don't think it's crazy to make that claim.
 
I mostly agree with you, everyone makes mistakes. Sometime you have options and it's not clear in the moment what's best and you take a gamble, let the dice roll.

But in hindsight you can evaluate, and Sagan did lose some races he could have won, M-SR 2017 for example, by being a bit more cold-blooded, or maybe by taking the risk to look like a chump when he gets overtaken by the peloton.

Of course, the more often a racer is leading a race towards the end, the more such mistakes can happen...

It's probably stupid to call guys like Sagan or MVDP stupid (in the race sense at least), but logically some have to be better at that sort of stuff than others, and maybe they aren't top of the top in race tactics. I don't think it's crazy to make that claim.
Brilliant point: riders like Sagan and Valverde probably have made more tactical blunders than most other riders—because they get themselves into finales of races hundreds of times during their careers. That doesn’t necessarily mean they make tactical blunders more often than other riders. In addition, we all tend to remember obvious tactical blunders more than we do the times a rider is passive, yet both result in losses.
 
But WVA is not at his best yet, due to his appendix surgery. After training on altitude, where he was the weakest of his team,
he has built up a basic condition. It allowed him to win the NC of Belgium. But it'll be to early to beat Alaphilippe, Van der poel, Pogacar and other punchers in stage 1 and 2, uphill. I don't think he has a chance winning the sprintstages 3 and 4 either, but he will probably sprint and give it a try. If his condition improves quickly, he may be able to compete for the win in the TT (stage 5).
 
If MvdP is well positioned at 200m to go, I can't see anyone will be able to beat him then. But that's quite a big if.
He's repeatedly had problem with positioning himself in the past (look MSR this year, or Tirreno stage 2, where he could've easily beaten Alaf if not being ~10th wheel at 300m to go). Not having the best team to put him in the right place before the finish is also a part of it.

Like somene said, this will be a total carnage on the last climb, it won't be anything like relatively relaxed Tirreno or Suisse finishes. All GC riders and stage hunters fighting for the position, fighting for the yellow and I can't see anyone winning this one after being further than ~8th position at any point of the last climb. That's why, although MvdP is for me a clear favorite on the paper if we only look at the profile, I'm starting to have some serious doubts about his chances on Saturday.
 
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