Vincenzo Nibali discussion thread

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He tends to crash on wet descents (Rio, Angliru stage, Giro 2013, Firenze) so I think Mortirolo was a wise decision. Looking back I think he lost the Giro on Lago Serru, a combination of finding himself in the wrong place with the wrong companion on a not-so-good day.
Both Lago Serru and Courmayeur were tactically bad. And before the Carapazbestgetoveritcrew gets onto this, yeah he was the best those 2 days, but throwing away 50s to Majka who got rofldropped every other mountain stage means it was incredibly tactical. Courmayeur was just adding insult to injury and I don't know what Nibali was doing there.

Nibali was clearly on his worst day on Lago Serru, but he severely overestimated Roglic, and tbh the first signs of that were already there on the stage where Dumoulin crashed and Nibali lost additional time due to Pucchio.
Gazzetta dello Sport reports that Nibali's first altitude camp has begun on Teide together with Gianluca Brambilla, Giulio Ciccone, Bauke Mollema and bro Antonio. He will be there until the 10th. Then he will ride Algarve 19-23 Feb, Faun-Ardeche Classic (29 Feb) and Royal Bernard Drome Classic ( March 1st).

The usual approach to Giro will follow with Larciano, Tirreno-Adriatico, Sanremo then Tour of the Alps and LBL. For Tokyo he will ride Tour of Austria (June 27 - 3rd of July) and Tour of Poland (5-11 July). Nibali will leave for Japan on the 17th, 8 days before the road race (he will not do any recon before). As for the WCRR, he will most likely do the Vuelta.
Looks like a good program. I had been hoping that he would ride the Österreich Rundfahrt. It's a 2.Pro race this year and the most logical preparation for Tokyo for riders not doing the Tour. Should be a very good field this year.
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Interesting that he'll ride both, Austria and Poland. I guess it makes sense as he has struggled in the past to find top shape after long periods of just training. They'll sure be excited to have a rider of his caliber in Austria..
Looks like a good program. I had been hoping that he would ride the Österreich Rundfahrt. It's a 2.Pro race this year and the most logical preparation for Tokyo for riders not doing the Tour. Should be a very good field this year.
Aren't those the same race?
Slongo has an interesting lengthy interview in Tuttobiciweb. In short everything is good at Trek (Guercilena, the staff, the equipment, Vincenzo is enthusiastic for a new adventure, positive work on the TT bike).

Asked if he thinks Nibali will still be competitive at his age, Slongo says:

"Yes, I have no doubt. The level he showed at last year's Giro is achievable and with a little luck and an even stronger team... Over the years, I don't see the problem in his physique, but in his head. Maybe in a year and a half or two, Vincenzo will ask me to ride freer, like Valverde does. At some point in his career he'll have to go back to the way he was at the beginning, a "crazy horse". There will be a second or third Nibali who will always be competitive, but he won't have the worry of the last 10-11 years in which he never made it off the podium in Grand Tours. For the spirit that he has, he now shows definitely less than the 35 years that he is."
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Guercilena in an article from Corriere della Sera: "Vincenzo never mentioned he will retire. Who said he will quit in 2022?". Another interesting thing is that Guercilena identifies Liege as another target, something we haven't heard from Nibali: "Only one request was made (by Nibali), that the team support him one hundred per cent on the primary objectives: Liège, Giro, Tokyo, Worlds"

Tomorrow Algarve, start of a new season (16th). The team: Vincenzo Nibali (ITA), Bauke Mollema (NED), Jasper Stuyven (BEL), Edward Theuns (BEL), Koen de Kort (NED), Ryan Mullen (IRL), Antonio Nibali (ITA) with De Jongh and Slongo as DSs.
In Gazzetta dello Sport there's an interview with Nibali while on his way to Algarve. Here's a few interesting bits:

About the preparation:
"This year, at least regarding the sensations, I got off to a better start. Last year I was living the transition from the vertebra injury of the 2018 Tour. The physique needed time. Then before Teide we were in hotter places like Sicily, or Mallorca. And it hardly ever rained in Lugano. I didn't miss days of training because of the rain, or maybe one. Never happened."

About the race:
“I feel good, but until you hook your feet to the pedals in the race, you don't know that. I feel like measuring myself, because I've been trying to work really hard. I'm calm, confident. The team has given me the necessary serenity".

About the ITT:
"It will be a good test. The position on the bike is different. A radical change, I felt immediately comfortable. The different geometries of the bikes allow you a different setup. It's not that one is absolutely better than the other, it's that many years ago the frame fit the athlete, now it's the other way around."
I hope he knows what he's doing. Last time he started well was in 2016, won Oman, most likely would have been in the mix for winning T-A without that cancelation of the MTF then he went backwards and was all over the place in the Giro.



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