Vincenzo Nibali discussion thread

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This was exactly the general sentiment before Giro 2016, which was considered Nibali's race to lose before it started.
He was much closer to his peak years and had probably the strongest team in the race. And yet he needed a miracle to pull it off.

Any of the riders mentioned could beat him. Yates in 2018 shape would beat him too. There's Vlasov who looks like the next big thing and possibly other young riders who will step up (Almeida?).
Yates has shown the form to beat Nibali in a Giro once and collapsed before winning said Giro. Nibali lost last year's Giro more due to tactical mistakes than due to age. You have guys who are pretty decent top 5 climbing references like Landa and MAL who weren't exactly flying away from him except for random seconds on more explosive Cat 2s.
 
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It's a bit early to speculate on this. We still have to see Roglic collapse at the tour first. At the moment, I would say Nibali is the favourite for the Giro but not the outstanding favourite.
 
Yates has shown the form to beat Nibali in a Giro once and collapsed before winning said Giro. Nibali lost last year's Giro more due to tactical mistakes than due to age. You have guys who are pretty decent top 5 climbing references like Landa and MAL who weren't exactly flying away from him except for random seconds on more explosive Cat 2s.
But he wasn't flying away from them either.
When was the last time Nibali dropped all of his competitors in a mountain stage in a GT? I can't think of anything after 2016.

The thing with Nibali is that he needs very specific conditions to win a GT at this point of his career. He will be up there, a podium is very likely, but winning will be hard.
 
But he wasn't flying away from them either.
When was the last time Nibali dropped all of his competitors in a mountain stage in a GT? I can't think of anything after 2016.

The thing with Nibali is that he needs very specific conditions to win a GT at this point of his career. He will be up there, a podium is very likely, but winning will be hard.
Ofcourse it'll be hard, but I do think the circumstances are there. The route is there. There's no GC rider that'll put 3 minutes into him in the ITTs. The main differences will be made on massive, 50 minute + climbs. That's where Nibali shines.
 
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I think it's likely Nibali will go into the giro as the bookies favorite before one of those 2nd tier favorites will show a really strong climbing performance and overtake him after a week.

The weird thing is that Nibali is pretty much the only pre race favorite with a high floor but a ceiling not much higher while almost all other contenders have a pretty low floor but a high ceiling. Nibali is basically relying on nobody hitting their absolute peak potential.
2018 Thomas beats Nibali
2018 Yates beats Nibali.
If Fuglsang improved as much in gt's as in one day races he beats Nibali.
If Vlasov is indeed an upcoming superstar he can beat Nibali
I can see a clear path to victory for all of them yet I can also see all of them finishing outside the top 10.
 
I think it's likely Nibali will go into the giro as the bookies favorite before one of those 2nd tier favorites will show a really strong climbing performance and overtake him after a week.

The weird thing is that Nibali is pretty much the only pre race favorite with a high floor but a ceiling not much higher while almost all other contenders have a pretty low floor but a high ceiling. Nibali is basically relying on nobody hitting their absolute peak potential.
2018 Thomas beats Nibali
2018 Yates beats Nibali.
If Fuglsang improved as much in gt's as in one day races he beats Nibali.
If Vlasov is indeed an upcoming superstar he can beat Nibali
I can see a clear path to victory for all of them yet I can also see all of them finishing outside the top 10.
Nibali attracts freak once in a lifetime performances

Antonio to win.

But Nibs has had to rebuild his form twice after big injures, after Rio and after Brokeback Mountain, I'm not quite sure what his own ceiling is.
 
He was decent enough in the 2018 Lombardia that I think if his back injury was still a problem almost a year later it will still be a problem today. Believe me, I'd love it if all of a sudden prime Nibali turns up again, but I sure as hell don't expect it
 
If you take out 2013 and 2014, Nibali's GT level has remained the same for the past 10 years or so: not dominant, but really high. Every year I think it will be the last time Nibali is really competitive in a GT yet he just stays up there year in year out. He's an incredible GT rider.
Tbf, after 2014 he still had two more years where his peak level seemed to be about as good as in the two years prior but he was garbage for the first two weeks in the gt's he targeted. La Toussuire 2015 and Rissoul 2016 were absolute monster performances but they were pretty isolated. Maybe he was comparably good in Lombardia 2017 but that's kinda hard to judge.
 
Tbf, after 2014 he still had two more years where his peak level seemed to be about as good as in the two years prior but he was garbage for the first two weeks in the gt's he targeted. La Toussuire 2015 and Rissoul 2016 were absolute monster performances but they were pretty isolated. Maybe he was comparably good in Lombardia 2017 but that's kinda hard to judge.
Lombardia 2017 is probably up there. I think Val Thorens is his best performance after that. That mechanical at Alpe d'Huez 2015 was pretty annoying he didn't frigging bother after that.
 
I expect some Giro stages (or parts of) to be cancelled, thus making it "easier". As Nibali's main quality over the last 3/4 years seems to be endurance on longer climbing efforts, I think his chances of winning not to be that good.

But I'd like to be proven wrong. I fancy the idea of him winning this Giro to be beautiful goodbye to his career as a GT contender.
 
I expect some Giro stages (or parts of) to be cancelled, thus making it "easier". As Nibali's main quality over the last 3/4 years seems to be endurance on longer climbing efforts, I think his chances of winning not to be that good.

But I'd like to be proven wrong. I fancy the idea of him winning this Giro to be beautiful goodbye to his career as a GT contender.
After that, he can boot Valverde from some Vuelta breakaway cause Valverde is the GC contender and Nibali just wants to solo the final 2 climbs.
 
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Btw one thing that could become a huge problem for Nibali is that he will have to deal with the curse of the rainbow jersey. That's a big blow.
This became ever more difficult to be fair today as Formolo was also injured out from the WC on top of Ciccone. Not sure Italy will have strong enough team to give the tactical options for Nibs to shine.

Looks like this year he needs to pull out the possible big win all by himself.
 
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Don't think I'd be hugely worried about him not living on a murito like that in a prep race.

End of the day it's only 13 seconds to the main group. Next few days a bit more telling
 
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Long gone are the days of Porto Sant'Elpidio, when he would smash the muritos in the rain and proceed to win TA.

To be honest, it looked to me like he didn't want to go too deep, a staple of Slongo's approach to GTs.
Normally when he's really trying his best in this kind of efforts, he's close to the front and then completely dies. Today he was always in the middle of the group, riding a steady pace and actually overtaking some riders towards the top.
 
Long gone are the days of Porto Sant'Elpidio, when he would smash the muritos in the rain and proceed to win TA.

To be honest, it looked to me like he didn't want to go too deep, a staple of Slongo's approach to GTs.
Normally when he's really trying his best in this kind of efforts, he's close to the front and then completely dies. Today he was always in the middle of the group, riding a steady pace and actually overtaking some riders towards the top.
I think he was also badly positioned at the start of the final climb.

And yeah I seem to remember Nibali attack on the queen stage of the 2019 TA only to finish like 4 minutes down. Guess that's a difference between building up for MSR and for the worlds.
 

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