Volta ao Algarve em Bicicleta 2020, Portugal, February 19 - February 23

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To state the obvious, Evenepoel is barely 20 with very limited racing. Given that I wouldn't be too certain of what kind of rider he is, he can, or he will be. He will certainly change and evolve. Extrapolating his sprint after what happened in San Juan seems a bit...thin to me. I'd wager his explosiveness over the next couple of years becomes a very different thing than it is now.
Again, i wasn't extrapolating his sprint from San Juan. But that was against Florez, not against Thomas, and it was 150 meters, not 500 or 1k. Him not having any punch/sprint isn't something we just saw in San Juan. It's something that has been known since 2017. His coach said it, he said it, we 've witnessed it plenty of times.
 
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Feltet stars:

* * * * *Remco Evenepoel
* * * *Geraint Thomas, Maximilian Schachmann
* * *Rohan Dennis, Tim Wellens, Bauke Mollema, Michal Kwiatkowski, Lennard Kämna
* *Dylan van Baarle, Rui Costa, Simon Geschke, Felix Grossschartner, Patrick Bevin, Miguel Angel Lopez, Dan Martin, Jan Polanc,
Vincenzo Nibali, Mathieu van der Poel, Andreas Leknessund, Ilan van Wilder, Amaro Antunes, Joao Rodrigues, Vicente Garcia de Mateos
*Edgar Pinto, Philippe Gilbert, Greg van Avermaet, Xandro Meurisse, Simone Petilli, Kevin Geniets, Rodrigo Contreras,
Joao Almeida, Markus Hoelgaard, Raul Alarcon, Ricardo Mestre, David Rodrigues, Joao Benta, Joaquim Silva

Feltet readers stars:

* * * * *Remco Evenepoel
* * * *Geraint Thomas, Maximilian Schachmann
* * *Rohan Dennis, Tim Wellens, Matteo Trentin
Those feltet.dk stars are a bit ridiculous in my opinion. Why not just list the entire lineup? It doesn't show better expertise when you just mention a lot of riders that could potentially do well to cover all bases. These star lists should not contain a lot more than 10 riders. And tbh, there aren't 37 riders (yes, I counted them) that can win the GC. Or am I missing the point of such a list?
 
Baloise Belgium Tour or Adriatica Ionica wasn't exactly against Thomas, Lopez etc. San Sebastian was him vs domestiques. And once he has a gap, it's hard for anyone to bridge, especially when domestiques are burnt by then. If he's in full ITT mode once he's got a gap, that's when it becomes a problem. I doubt worldclass climbers will get dropped on a 6k climb.


I wasn't extrapolating that, or i'd be talking about 25-30 seconds. I remember a few late attacks by Thomas in 2018, where he took more than 10 seconds on rivals in the final 1k. Those rivals in turn were already more punchy than Evenepoel and could in turn easily take up to 10s on him. Now, these climbs may not see such gaps, i don't know. I'm not talking in absolutes, but guys like Thomas, Kwiatkowski who could still be there on the top of the climb, could do enough damage to become a big problem in the ITT.

EDIT: Pogacar took 19s on guys like Poels & Pauwels last week, in only a few hundreds of meters (the three-way sprint with Valverde & Teuns). Knox finished at 8s and according to some people here, he climbs better than Evenepoel. I'm not saying it will definitely happen or that it will definitely be 20s, but it's also not out of the question imho.


Yes. If Dennis climbs as well as in TDU he'll be a huge problem for anyone. On the other hand, like you said, the question would be how his ITT form is (or is it the bike?!).
You don't lose 20s in a km unless you're also aerobically worse on a longer climb. Thomas just likes his final 1km attacks when he could go earlier.
 
This sort of comment always baffles me. Even if you hadn't watched the race or couldn't recall the detail, finding a race report in this day and age takes less time than writing this post (or for me to write this reply ;) )

https://www.cyclingnews.com/races/volta-ao-algarve-em-bicicleta-2018/stage-5/results/

Big group, Kwaitkowski there as a watchdog so Sky didn't have to ride.
And your link reinforces my view - The peleton ( it's not just Sky in the peleton ) allowed the 2nd place rider on GC to get into a break on the final stage and the 3rd or 4th or 5th rider in GC weren't in the break - Whether one team has the first two riders on GC if you are the riders in 3rd,4th or 5th place then you mark Kwaitkowski - It's one of the strangest stages in recent times, though stage 1 of Murcia gives it a run for its money - Finally, I only post when I've watched the race in question.
 
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Again, i wasn't extrapolating his sprint from San Juan. But that was against Florez, not against Thomas, and it was 150 meters, not 500 or 1k. Him not having any punch/sprint isn't something we just saw in San Juan. It's something that has been known since 2017. His coach said it, he said it, we 've witnessed it plenty of times.
And what I’m saying is that while true now, I wouldn’t count on it being true forever.
 
Absent serious time loss if I’m someone not named Dennis or Evenepoel going into the last stage without at least a 45 second lead I would not feel good and even then 1 minute might not be enough.

Evenepoel took 32 seconds on the Individual pursuit world record holder and bronze medalist in the WC ITT and over a minute over anyone else on a 15.2 km ITT. Granted there was a climb, but even still if Dennis and Evenepoel are close to the leaders in stage 5 they will win.
 
Evenepoel lost 4 seconds to Florez in 150 meters in San Juan. Someone with a real punch could take up to 20 seconds in the final 1k even without him blowing up, imho. Even if it's only 10 or 15 seconds, it could still be enough of a problem considering some of those riders being good ITT'ers as well (Kwiat, Thomas...)
imo, the longer the attack, the more time steady massive power evenepoel has to reel it in.

riders may sprint away from him for seconds gained.

come the time trial, it's curtains, however.

remco needs a sky train, frankly, to set a steady high power pace from the base of a long climb. by the time the last team-mate pulls off, remco can then simply power everyone else off his wheel.
 
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Remco faces a big test here. Now he will challenge a nothing if not spectacular field in a varied one week race. I think he is capable of winning though.

Should everyone be in his best form I think the race would be Thomas's to lose but as he stated that he will only warm up here I guess Evenepoel and Dennis are the main favorites. My two black horses are Louis Leon Sanchez and Kämna as both can TT very well and they displayed some good form recently.
 
Yes, but it depends on how much time he loses uphill and to whom. I don't think 45 seconds to Lopez would be a big issue with the ITT coming up. Losing 15 seconds to Dennis might be a big issue.
not going to lose 15 secs to Dennis on a climb.

unless he's sick or has a mechanical.

however, if Dennis is within 15 secs at start of ITT then Remco might not win. but Dennis would have to be in Worlds shape, i think.

imo, the two standout early season performances are quintana's ventoux and remco's ITT. they were equally dominant in a way we have rarely seen in recent years.
 
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Remco still has to prove his climbing abilities against better opponents.
true. and that is why this should be fun.

i just find it hard to believe that a small guy who pushes so much power, who dropped Wellens on a climb in Tour of Belgium and held off a rampaging group of climbers alone in san sebastian at age 19, is going to be in trouble. he may lose a few seconds in the sprint to the top, but more than that...?

as i have said many times before, he reminds me very much of hinault. pure power climber, unable to accelerate, but just wears people down and off his back wheel. because he can.
 
Evenepoel and Dennis are the favorites with the TT.
I don't know if Schachmann is already in shape. It is his first race. If he can time trial like last year at the Tour of Basque he will be up there too. The climb with 6,0% at 7km (Stage 2 ) suits him really good, but I think he will loose a bit time at the Malhoa climb. He can do long climbs with gradients under 7% and really steep, but short climbs. 2,6km at nearly 10% seems a bit too long for him.
 
true. and that is why this should be fun.

i just find it hard to believe that a small guy who pushes so much power, who dropped Wellens on a climb in Tour of Belgium and held off a rampaging group of climbers alone in san sebastian at age 19, is going to be in trouble.
A lot of guys actually dropped Wellens on a climb last season. And before that.. The San Sebastian win was great, but that group behind him was far from rampaging and not all of them where climbers. Still a very talented rider, but i'm certainly expecting him to get dropped by the better climbers this Volta Algarve. MvdP is pushing more power and even he's not going to win this thing.
 
A lot of guys actually dropped Wellens on a climb last season. And before that.. The San Sebastian win was great, but that group behind him was far from rampaging and not all of them where climbers. Still a very talented rider, but i'm certainly expecting him to get dropped by the better climbers this Volta Algarve. MvdP is pushing more power and even he's not going to win this thing.
Lol. As if their weights are the same.
 
A lot of guys actually dropped Wellens on a climb last season. And before that.. The San Sebastian win was great, but that group behind him was far from rampaging and not all of them where climbers. Still a very talented rider, but i'm certainly expecting him to get dropped by the better climbers this Volta Algarve. MvdP is pushing more power and even he's not going to win this thing.
Hugh Carthy, Mollema, Valverde, Konrad... were climbers and i assume they wanted to win or they would have gotten off the bike by then. Downplaying the San Sebastian win "that was great buuuut..." is complete BS. But it's also a completely different scenario from what will likely unfold in Algarve. Like i said before, for Remco, there is a huge difference between defending a gap he has (he will not easily give that up and 9 out of 10 he'll ride off into the sunset), and being able to drop opponents on a short climb/effort. The latter is simply not likely to happen vs top climbers. It is far more likely that they will jump away from him and gap him, simply because he lacks that jump/punch/kick. He needs distance to suffocate his rivals.
 
Hugh Carthy, Mollema, Valverde, Konrad... were climbers and i assume they wanted to win or they would have gotten off the bike by then. Downplaying the San Sebastian win "that was great buuuut..." is complete BS. But it's also a completely different scenario from what will likely unfold in Algarve. Like i said before, for Remco, there is a huge difference between defending a gap he has (he will not easily give that up and 9 out of 10 he'll ride off into the sunset), and being able to drop opponents on a short climb/effort. The latter is simply not likely to happen vs top climbers. It is far more likely that they will jump away from him and gap him, simply because he lacks that jump/punch/kick. He needs distance to suffocate his rivals.
It wouldn’t surprise me to see him put the power down, a few will follow, and a few won’t be able to.
 
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