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Tour de France 2020

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31Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 02:38

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
Thought I would try to explain todays race a little because it highlights various races within races.

If you watch the clip below and listen carefully near the start you will hear the commentator say that one of the riders deliberately lost time yesterday - so why did he do that?

The answer is that he and a group of others tried to win the stage today BUT they could only do that if they were no threat to the leaders in terms of time.

The breakaway riders are decent riders in their own right and if they had similar times to those leading the Tour they would not be allowed to get so far in front, the leaders would tell their teams to chase after them and close their lead down until they are brought back to the rest of the peloton.

But if they were already several minutes down on time they were no threat to the tour leaders so they were allowed to go, whilst they kept their eyes on each other lower down in the race.

So in a sense you have two different races going on at the same time - one of a group of riders trying to win the stage and one of the leaders keeping their powder dry for another day marking their rivals further back in the race.

You will start to see similar themes throughout the race where the GC boys are playing a longer game whilst others who are down on their times and thus no threat being allowed to race amongst themselves for the days stage win.

There is also another race with a race going on in the clip over getting points towards the green jersey - Irishman Bennett increasing his lead today by chasing bonus points - even though he is a sprinter and today wasn't a sprinters stage.

Tbh the highlights aren't exciting but they are good enough to use to explain some of the things happening so you can understand what's going on that bit more.

32Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 02:48

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@boltonbonce wrote:Cheers Sluffy, thanks once again for the info. Interesting stuff.  Started reading a book about Tommy Simpson tonight and got hooked, which is why I'm posting at half two in the morning.
Better get some sleep.

I'm a bit of a night owl myself as I don't have work to get up early for these days (through choice I may add)

Tommy's seem as something of a hero to the continentals, not really sure why though?  I assume you know how he died, I won't spoil it if you don't but there is a statue to his memory on one of the Tours iconic climbs, Mont Ventoux.

Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Blog_tom_simpson_memorial

33Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 09:43

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
I like a good sporting biography, even if I'm not up on his/her particular sport. I've always been aware of the Simpson story, and how he met his death, but it's nice to get a sense of the man himself. He was probably the only cyclist I could name back then.
Your insights have given me an idea of the complexity of race riding, but my problem with it is, of course, the rather large elephant in the room. Drugs.
Can it ever redeem itself? Or is this something they're going to have to live with. I should add that cycling isn't alone in this regard, but it's in great danger of being defined by it.
Do you, as a passionate advocate of the sport, get frustrated when people dismiss it hands down?
I've been guilty of this myself, but would like to think there's a way back for the sport.
Are you hopeful? Or is it going to be a year on year battle to beat the testers?

34Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 12:02

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@boltonbonce wrote:I like a good sporting biography, even if I'm not up on his/her particular sport. I've always been aware of the Simpson story, and how he met his death, but it's nice to get a sense of the man himself. He was probably the only cyclist I could name back then.
Your insights have given me an idea of the complexity of race riding, but my problem with it is, of course, the rather large elephant in the room. Drugs.
Can it ever redeem itself? Or is this something they're going to have to live with. I should add that cycling isn't alone in this regard, but it's in great danger of being defined by it.
Do you, as a passionate advocate of the sport, get frustrated when people dismiss it hands down?
I've been guilty of this myself, but would like to think there's a way back for the sport.
Are you hopeful? Or is it going to be a year on year battle to beat the testers?

People cheat.

Always have, always will.

You see it every time you watch a match, dives claiming corners and throw ins, they know they touched last, shirt grabbing, deliberate fouls, etc, etc.

T happens in cricket, when players don't 'walk', in athletics a whole country is banned for institutional drug taking at the moment, even darts (see 'fartgate').

The only two widely accepted 'cheat free' sports seem to be golf (but some of their clubs seem to test the rules) and snooker.

Footballers have taken performance enhancing drugs for decades - this article is from twenty years ago for example -

https://www.theguardian.com/football/2000/jan/30/newsstory.sport3

I'm not a defender of drugs, like most people I wish sport was clean but we live in the real world where people try to gain from cheating, rather than the ideal world of gentlemen and 'play up, play the game' ethos - the idealistic world of 'Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori'.

I simply take it as part of the package of the world we live in.

As far as I know at the top level of cycling it is clean but you never can be certain - although there's no obvious effects - they are going up mountains at a million miles per hour and not even being out of breath anymore like they used to do, for instance.

It a kind of very perverse way the periodic scandals add very much to the theatre of cycling - and it's the theatre aspect that I like the most rather than being a purist over the sport itself - I certainly for instance don't involve myself in anorak minutiae such as how the bikes set up or even bother with which make of bikes riders even use - it's about all the twists and turns in the story as it unravels through the weeks and months.

I like it for being a soap opera - even though I don't actually follow TV soap operas - as this is 'real' and 'happening' and not pretend and made up.

I would moan how such things would never happen in real life when watching soaps on the telly yet sat rivetted and agog when the various cycling scandals (The Festina affair, Floyd Landis, Armstrong, Michael Rasmussen) all took place at or during the Tour over the last twenty years or so.

One of the five time winners of the Tour Jacques Anquetil is alleged to have said some fifty years or so ago - You can ride the Tour on just Perrier water!

Worth a look at some of his other quotes attributed to him too -

https://www.azquotes.com/author/45443-Jacques_Anquetil

I liked the one about a pheasant!

Anquetil was a very shall we say 'interesting' character and if you may like to just have a read of his private life and involvement in drugs from his wiki bio -

Ooh la la, as they say!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacques_Anquetil#Personal_life

So in summary I wish the drugs were not there but I can't be sure they aren't. I believe the sport is clean at the top - but who really knows for sure? I take the scandal when it happens as a positive - at least they are trying to do something (does everybody really believe Mo Farah was drug free all those years for instance - British Athletics certainly didn't!) and as I say it makes for splendid theatre - and after all isn't that why we watch sport - to be entertained.

That's the reason I do anyway.

How did you feel after this which won us the game against Blackburn for instance?

Rhetorical question - just trying to make people think about cheating to gain an advantage over others.

35Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 12:53

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
I remember that pen, and I was convinced it was legit. Then I saw it back. I suppose you take things like that as just part of human nature.
Drugs on the other hand is where the money is, and not only do they threaten sport, they threaten lives as well.
Money talks in all sports, and winning is paramount, so the days of the corinthian spirit have passed, but I'd like to think a flame still burns. I'm hopeful a time will come when the testers are infallible. The technology is surely coming.
Until then, I suppose the cynics will nod knowingly.
Thanks for all the info though. There are a few names in there I'm going to read up on.

36Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 13:53

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
Where do you draw the line?

I remember as a youngster players having injections so they could play in the clubs next match - that was taking drugs - so which drugs are legal and which aren't?

Wiggins took an 'illegal' drug but with legality due to a health exemption BUT the health exemption was shall we say bogus in order for him to take the performance enhancing drug in the first place?

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/cycling/bradley-wiggins-team-skytour-de-france-2012-corticosteroid-drug-asthma-a8239651.html

He went on to win both the Tour and an Olympic gold that year as well!

And - as far as I know it was the same sort of drug (at least has a very similar sort of name) as the ones footballers were having injected in to them back in our generation - cortisone injections - and the one I put the link up on my previous post from twenty years ago about how they were detrimental to health.

Is Wiggins a national hero or a drugs cheat?  Where footballers having cortisone injections to stay in the game and make their money or doing performance enhancing drugs at the time?

How many amongst us have not cheated knowingly in some way - I have gone over the speed limit when driving every now and again - not stupidly though - I'm sure we all have, it's part of being human I guess?

People will cheat and sports people will cheat at sports too - irrespective if they make money or prestige from it, they will do it in friendly's with their mates down the park, even if just to laugh about it down the pub afterwards!

I think it is naive to aspire to the perfect world, in order for it to be perfect we ourselves need to be and act perfectly too - and we simply as a species don't - I guess its in our genes to rebel, push the boundary's, survival of the fittest the evolution that as made us to be what we now are?

Professional sports people by definition must be competitive by nature and must always be looking out to improve themselves against their rivals.  I guess it's inevitable some go down the drugs path.  Most will know exactly what they are doing and the risks associated with it but will do it non the less.

Science will always come up with cutting edge stuff and no doubt if it aids performance and is at that point in time is undetectable, then of course some people will drug cheat.

It's certainly not what should be happening but it IS the real world and simply cannot be denied that such things happen and always will do.

People lie, cheat, steal, manipulate, bully, unfaithful, feckless and God knows what else all the time - and that's just some of the people we all probably know/met/worked with/mates down the pub/etc.

Why should sportsmen be somehow be deemed to be on a higher pedestal than the rest of us?

That's just idealism I'm afraid, they all have feet of clay like the rest of us have.

Enjoy the moment, enjoy the theatre and know it means nothing more than entertainment.  It's all a game when all said and done and as I've said before I even reckon life itself is just the same to a great extent - even that doesn't add up to much in the scheme of things does it - so why get so het up over anything much really - that's my philosophy, and it seems to work just fine for me.


Although I've not read it I can imagine you would enjoy the book by British cyclist Vin Denson called  The Full Circle.

Here's his wiki bio - in which he talks about Simpson's death.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vin_Denson

Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 The_Full_Cycle_medium

37Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 16:47

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
I think sportsmen are on a higher pedestal because we put them there. They're doing something we can't, for whatever reason, do ourselves, and we want to project everything that's good and decent onto our surrogate self.
Silly really, because they're no better than us as human beings, and fall victim to the same demons that plague us all.
Yet if they fall short of a standard few of us could sustain, we topple them with alacrity.
I suppose that's the imperfect world we live in, and, as they say, we can like it or lump it.
I should say that I myself have never cheated at sport, but I did it regularly when Johnny set his quizzes. All in fun of course. He knew the score.

38Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 17:28

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@boltonbonce wrote:I think sportsmen are on a higher pedestal because we put them there. They're doing something we can't, for whatever reason, do ourselves, and we want to project everything that's good and decent onto our surrogate self.
Silly really, because they're no better than us as human beings, and fall victim to the same demons that plague us all.
Yet if they fall short of a standard few of us could sustain, we topple them with alacrity.
I suppose that's the imperfect world we live in, and, as they say, we can like it or lump it.
I should say that I myself have never cheated at sport, but I did it regularly when Johnny set his quizzes. All in fun of course. He knew the score.

I've never cheated at sport either, I even walked at a critical time in a cricket match when given not out even though I knew I'd nicked it - the opposition even clapped me off although I wasn't too popular with my team mates but so what, its me that has to live with my actions not them and I've always been more comfortable in myself in doing the right thing when I can.

I don't go along with putting sportspeople on a higher pedestal because they can do stuff we can't - there's loads of people in all sorts of professions that can do that - doctors, nurses especially these days but how many of us had even heard of people like Whitty and Van-Tam let alone idolised them?

It's more to do with the cult of 'celebrity' to my way of thinking - they're famous for simply being famous - who really cares why three old footballers are no longer commentators on Sky or what the likes of Lineker says on twitter?

I don't but plenty do and for why - they were once good at kicking a ball???

We get what we deserve they say - I've just seen the list of the contestants for Strictly - why on earth would I or anyone want to know how good or bad a dancer they are?  Far beyond my comprehension - ballroom dancing isn't even popular in the real world ffs!

It's all false and manufactured to me - players 'image' rights, endorsements, sponsorships - being in the public eye - is simply kicking a ball better than the next man worth such exaltation?

I don't believe so - but my view doesn't count for much.

It is what it is though, this is the world we've decided to live in - sportsmen are valued in financial terms more than doctors and nurses who save lives.

Kesara sara I suppose.

Another good win for Wout today - probably showing he's taken over the mantel from Sagan as now the best all round rider in the world.

The old guard is making way for their successors it seems and I look forward to the future and watching the cycling world change once again.

Onwards and upwards!

39Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 17:48

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Maybe they should do a Strictly Come Cycling. I'd certainly watch Ann Widdecombe haring round a velodrome.

40Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Fri Sep 04 2020, 18:14

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
@boltonbonce wrote:Maybe they should do a Strictly Come Cycling. I'd certainly watch Ann Widdecombe haring round a velodrome.
Blimey, I can't get that vision out of my head now!

41Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Mon Sep 07 2020, 17:25

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Sluffy, is this right or not.
Someone told me that before the TDF starts, any old cyclist can rack up and take part in a race stage. This is a couple of weeks before the actual race.
Is this true, or is he having me on?

42Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Mon Sep 07 2020, 17:41

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@boltonbonce wrote:Sluffy, is this right or not.
Someone told me that before the TDF starts, any old cyclist can rack up and take part in a race stage. This is a couple of weeks before the actual race.
Is this true, or is he having me on?

They obviously can't take part in the actual race but there are organised events where you can ride a stage of the Tour (I always thought it was after the actual Tour itself but I could be wrong about that?).

The official one (organised by the company that runs the actual Touritself) is called L'Etape du Tour but no doubt there are plenty of others out there as well.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L%27%C3%89tape_du_Tour

This official one will have organised all the route to be closed to traffic on that day for the safety of those taking part.

As the Tour is on public roads, then I imagine anyone could ride the Tour route whenever they wanted - just that they would obviously have to take into account cars and lorries on the roads at the same time.

43Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 08 2020, 13:01

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
The big boss of the Tour, race director Christian Prudhomme has tested positive for the virus.

Although he's not in the cyclists bubble he was in the main car that starts the events and follows the stages and on Stage 8 (Saturday) he had French prime minister Jean Castex sat with him in the car.

Four backroom staff one of each from Ineos Grenadiers [This is the team that Froome and Thomas ride for], Mitchelton-Scott [This is the team that the Bury lad Yates who had recently been in yellow rides for], Team Cofidis and AG2R La Mondiale tested positive and have left the race bubble.

No riders have so far tested positive.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cycling/54072769

44Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 08 2020, 23:49

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
A rare win for the Irish today when Sam Bennett became only the sixth Irish cyclist ever to win a stage on the Tour. His win puts him in the lead for the 'points' green jersey, of which one of his fellow countrymen and Tour stage winner, Sean Kelly...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sean_Kelly_(cyclist)

...who won the green jersey on a number of occasions himself.

A national hero in Ireland and who was possibly the world's best cyclist in his prime.

Anyway highlights of todays Tour and I'm pleased to note that the three sprinters I suggested you keep an eye open for, Bennett, Ewan and Viviani finished first, second and fourth!

45Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 16:29

wessy

wessy
El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf
Lots to like about Hirschi his win today seemed to show off al his strenghts? yet he only places 55th in GC despite a win a second and i think a third really is very hard to see how it unfolds.

46Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 17:05

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@wessy wrote:Lots to like about Hirschi his win today seemed to show off al his strenghts? yet he only places 55th in GC despite a win a second and i think a third really is very hard to see how it unfolds.

Tbh I didn't really knew much about the youngster until the race itself.

The team he rides for Sunweb, really doesn't have a 'star' rider as such and seems this year to be more suited for the one day races rather than the three week Tours.

I guess the Team's aim was to win a stage (well done for achieving that) so riders placements in GC aren't really what their aim was about.

I'm guessing Hirschi (and others in his team) probably had stages they had targeted to win and for the ones they hadn't, they just took it as easy as they could to save their energy for that particular day.

It seems Hirchi won the U23 World Championship last year (they are held annually) so he's clearly got talent.

Whether he's got the skill sets to climb mountains and Time Trial with the best of them I've no idea, I guess we will find out over time but certainly for this race  he's been a success already and in the scheme of things made his team a success as well - so they will be very happy.

Sometimes with young riders on their first Tour's, the teams will 'pull them out of the race' deliberately as a sort of giving them the experience but not expecting them to do the whole thing, I don't know if they plan to do it with him though?

A name and a face to follow now, to see how he progresses in the race and career.

47Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 20:06

wessy

wessy
El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf
I think Sunweb might have found a star, that's interesting that they may protect him and pull him out, hope not he's exciting to watch.

48Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 21:41

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
I thought you might find this of interest Wessy (and it also explains about how the 'team' helps in order to get one of their team mates to win)

Marc Hirschi makes up for earlier near-misses

The nearly-man of the 2020 Tour de France at last got his day at the top of the podium, as Marc Hirschi exorcised the disappointments of his earlier near misses with a stage victory.

The young Swiss rider was denied victory in devastating circumstances four days ago in the Pyrenees, after his huge long-range solo attack was cruelly reeled in just a couple of kilometres from the line, having before that also finished second on stage two behind Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick-Step).

Undiscouraged from these experiences, Hirschi put in another swashbuckling attack today. This time, to the cheers of panache-loving cycling fans around the world, his efforts were rewarded with what isn’t just the biggest win of his career, but his first win altogether at WorldTour-level.

The 22-year-old has been one of the revelations of the race, and it’s hard not to love his commitment to attacking racing.

Having picked up the maximum five points in the king of the mountains competition over the day’s final summit, he now moves up to third in that classification, and is climbing well enough to peruse the polka-dot jersey during the second half of the race. Watch this space.

Sunweb’s teamwork rewarded with stage win

Heading into the Tour, Team Sunweb’s prospects did not look good. Without their star-man Michael Matthews — whose future departure to Mitchelton-Scott probably had a lot to do with why he wasn’t selected — it was difficult to see who would be the rider to take stage victories.

But in the absence of Matthews, the squad’s youthful contingent has stepped up. Their lead-out train has been among the best in the sprints, helping 25-year-old Cees Bol to a couple of top-three finishes, while Marc Hirschi, as discussed above, has been one of the revelations of the Tour.

Today they demonstrated what a harmonious unit they are at the moment, with some excellent teamwork helping set up Hirschi’s win. On the penultimate climb, the category three Côte de Saint-Martin-Terressus, Tiesj Benoot and Søren Kragh Anderson were the first to attack from the peloton, the team’s first move in a race that would eventually see Hirschi take victory.

Their approach on this climb was democratic. No rider had been elected as the sole protected rider, as instead the team strove to get as many riders up the road as possible, with Hirschi and Nicolas Roche also forming part of the counters that formed behind.

Benoot and Kragh Andersen might eventually have been caught by a handful of other escapees but on the final climb of the day it was Hirschi who proved the strongest, launching an attack that no-one could follow.

With his team-mates frustrating the other chasers in the group behind by getting in the way and refusing to take turns, Hirschi was able to finish off their good work, delivering Sunweb a thoroughly deserved stage win.

https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/racing/tour-de-france/five-talking-points-from-stage-12-of-the-tour-de-france-2020-467578


49Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 22:11

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
This next bit Wessy, taken from the same link, explains how there are 'races within races' in this case how Sagan and his team Bora, tried to manipulate the whole race so that he could win back points for the 'green jersey' competition, which is being led by Bennett of the Quick Step team.

Bennett is a big mussily type of sprinter, and so carries too much weight to get over the hills/mountains easily but Sagan is more a type of whippet like build, who can.

The following article after that explains what went on and why it didn't succeed - it gives you a little insight that the race isn't all about GC - it's about a number of teams/riders having various and often different objectives, yet they are all riding in the same race. The article goes on to explain how todays stage became so exciting because of all the various team agendas and objectives being in play at the same time.

Sagan tries in vain to make ground on Bennett

Peter Sagan is not giving up on the green jersey without a fight.

After being relegated from yesterday’s sprint, and falling well behind Sam Bennett (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) in the points classification as a result, the Slovak was determined to begin reducing the 68-point deficit right away, by whatever means possible.

When his attempts to get into the breakaway at the start of the day were scuppered by an attentive Deceuninck-Quick-Step, he set his Bora-Hansgrohe team-mates to the front of the peloton, with the apparent intention of bringing back the six-man breakaway that formed, and putting himself in contention for points at the finish.

Given all the climbing in the finale, it was an ambitious plan, but one that had a promising start when the break was caught, Bennett was dropped while Sagan remained in the group.

The problem was that, with most of the other sprinters dropped too, other teams’ strategies reverted to attacking on the climbs in pursuit of a stage win. The situation became impossible to control, and the majority of the points at the finish line were ultimately swept up by attackers who managed to escape up the road on the late climbs, while Sagan himself struggled to hang on to the back of the peloton.

He did at least manage to make it back to the peloton, and won the bunch sprint at the finish. Unfortunately, that sprint was only for 13th place, and only gained him an extra four points — half of which he’d already lost to Bennett at the intermediate sprint earlier in the day.

It was an admirable effort by the defending champion, and a sign that he’s not willing to give up winning green yet, but after today he faces a huge task to do so.

A well-balanced route makes for an exciting stage

Stage 12 was one of those fascinating days that are neither for the sprinters, nor for the climbers, but for something in between.

Usually it’s the kind of day where you expect a breakaway to make it up the road and contest for victory, but Bora-Hansgrohe commitment at the front of the peloton ensured that did not happen, catching all the breakaway riders on the Côte de Saint-Martin-Terressus.

That set up a fascinating, unpredictable finale, with dozens of riders sensing that the much-desired prize of a Tour de France stage win was up for grabs. With the final climb of the Suc au May too difficult for the sprinters to survive, but not difficult enough to coax the GC riders into attacking, a whole host of classy rouleurs [A cycling term for a good all rounder - I guess the word means 'rollers' - Sluffy] and puncheurs [Bigger cyclist who are strong over a long distance and excellent at going up short sharp hills very quickly - again I guess the word means punchers as in some one who 'fights' (and not good at getting flat tyres!)] ] spent the final 45km of the stage attacking each other.

There might not have been a GC battle or a thrilling final sprint, but it’s stages like this that give the race crucial variety, and that helps make the Tour de France such a special event.




50Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Thu Sep 10 2020, 22:25

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
And this article - I won't print it all out this time - just the relevant bit - shows how the star rider in the Quick Step team (Alaphilippe) attempted to use the tactics of the Bora team (that's the one with Sagan in - see the above article) to help Sagan win points back against Bennett in his quest to retain the green jersey.

To look into this a little bit further, remember that Bennett is also in Alaphilippe's Quick Step team!

So Quick Step must have guessed what Bora would do (not hard to figure out tbh) and adapted a way that they (Alaphilippe) could gain from it although the plan was really formed against another of the Quick Step riders in the first place!

"In true Alaphilippe fashion, the Frenchman says he has “no regrets” about trying for the win, having been assisted by team-mates Dries Devenyns and Bob Jungels, taking advantage of Bora-Hansgrohe making the race fast as they hunt for opportunities where Peter Sagan can take points back off Sam Bennett in the green jersey competition.

“I had favoured making an effort on tomorrow’s stage, but in the end it was fast today thanks to Bora, so in the end the situation was good,” Alaphilippe said afterwards. “Dries [Devenyns] and Bob [Jungels] who helped me get a bit of a gap. After that, I made my effort, but it was complicated.”

Full article here -

https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/racing/tour-de-france/i-thought-it-was-bike-trouble-but-it-was-just-the-legs-julian-alaphilippe-proves-mortal-once-more-on-tour-de-france-stage-12-467585

51Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Sat Sep 12 2020, 20:52

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
Another vert good win by the Sunweb Team again - and I thought they were only here to make the numbers up this year - how wrong was I.

This is the team of young Hirsci (who finished 10th today) who helped with his team mates set up the win for his fellow rider -



52Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Sun Sep 13 2020, 22:15

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
Think bar something unexpected happening we already have determined our first and second in Paris already, with Roglic to win and his fellow countryman Pogacar in second - clearly the best two GC riders in this years Tour by a country mile.

This is the Tour though and it is never over until it is over, so the unexpected might well happen - rest day tomorrow and more Covid tests - you never know!?!

A shout out for Aussie veteran Riche Porte who has been the best cyclist not to win a Tour since I've been following cycling some fifty odd years ago, who finished third today and with an outside chance of getting on the podium in Paris - I really hope he does, he certainly deserves it for what work he's put in for others (such as Froome) over the years.

Egan Bernal and Sky/Ineos as I expected has/have been completely outgunned by Jumbo Visma who have the luxury of Wout van Aert and Tom Dumoulin have two riders good enough to win the Tour individually, sacrificing themselves to keep Roglic in yellow - what a great team they have!

Bernal had a bad day and basically blew his Tour chances today, so I guess the only chance left to get something out of the Tour and for Sky/Ineos is to go for a mountain stage win as he won't be kept on a leash by the other GC contenders as he's so far behind them now timewise.

53Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Sun Sep 13 2020, 22:54

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Just me with another dumb question Sluffy.
I know if a bike gets damaged, the rider has a spare, but is there a limit to how many replacements he can have?

54Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Sun Sep 13 2020, 23:41

Sluffy

Sluffy
Admin
@boltonbonce wrote:Just me with another dumb question Sluffy.
I know if a bike gets damaged, the rider has a spare, but is there a limit to how many replacements he can have?

No, he can have as many as he wants.

The 'team' car usually follows its top rider (obviously) but because of the nature of the race being on public roads - and some going up/down mountains can be narrow and hard to pass cyclists who could be strung out over a distance, the race also have 'neutral' cars, which carry spare bikes and can and will help riders, until their own team car can catch up with them and swop the bikes over.

Sometimes team mates will sacrifice their bike if their leaders bike is damaged in a crash - but that's not always desirable as riders and their bikes are not all the same size, have the same saddle position, or even set up of the bike.

Non of this is really crucial 99% of the time but when it is - it can literally cost the rider the Tour for the time he spends waiting for a new wheel/bike.

Here's a video of a famous incident on the 2016 Tour, where as you will see Frome (and Riche Porte who I mentioned above in the review of todays stage) crash - what happened was they were following a police bike making its way through the crowd and stopped suddenly with Porte and Froome piling into the back of it.  Porte remounted his bike but Froome's was unrideable.

Froome took the unique view that rather than wait until his team car or service car got to him with a replacement bike, that he might as well run up the mountain so he was doing his best to limit his time losses - that bit less to cycle than if he had just stayed where he was.

The first car to get to him was the 'service' car and he got on and rode off on 'their' bike but there was something clearly not right with it (I think it was a chain issue or something - I can't remember now).  You could see his anguish as he realised that all his rivals were now in front of him and all going to overtake him in the race lead as he was losing all the time advantage he had over them.

Eventually his team car turned up and he got his spare bike but the damage had already been done by then!!!

(Apologies the audio is in French)







In fact he got lucky, the judges decided to award Froome and Porte the same time as the stage winner - cycling does things like this, usually out of respect to the yellow jersey.  

There is an unwritten rule in cycling that you never take advantage of your rivals misfortune - you beat them man on man and not because their bike broke or they got a puncture.

There's been a lot of bad in cycling, no one can dispute that but there still is a code of honour (perhaps I use the wrong word but still...) that most other sports (snooker and golf excepted), don't seem to have.

Froome went on to win that year!

55Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Mon Sep 14 2020, 06:58

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Thanks. Clearly not as straightforward as it seems, and can cost a rider big time.

56Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 15 2020, 10:49

wessy

wessy
El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf
Slufffy genuine question because those of us who love endurance events have had many problems over the years with the drug issue, How clean is cycling now?

I ask because i have spent most of my life competing in distance events, 12 marathons, many fell races, The Three Peaks 23 miles with over 5000 feet of climbs, I was part of a relay team that ran the Pennine Way and the Coast to Coast pathways, so i have paid my dues so to speak.

Why is this relevant ? well i watched the last stage (Sunday)in wide mouthed amazement, after 4 hours in the saddle the riders hit the final climd 17.4k (over 10 miles) of steep assending, the guys at the front wound it up and slowly split the peloton and crushed last years champion, with a sprint finish to win the stage.

I was truly awe struck clapping the winner, BUT like in my sport if what you are seeing is drug induced then it takes away from the achievment, In my sport Mo Farah poses this question, am i seeing a truthfull performance ?
whats your take.

57Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 15 2020, 11:19

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
@wessy wrote:Slufffy genuine question because those of us who love endurance events have had many problems over the years with the drug issue, How clean is cycling now?

I ask because i have spent most of my life competing in distance events, 12 marathons, many fell races, The Three Peaks 23 miles with over 5000 feet of climbs, I was part of a relay team that ran the Pennine Way and the Coast to Coast pathways, so i have paid my dues so to speak.

Why is this relevant ? well i watched the last stage (Sunday)in wide mouthed amazement, after 4 hours in the saddle the riders hit the final climd 17.4k (over 10 miles) of steep assending, the guys at the front wound it up and slowly split the peloton and crushed last years champion, with a sprint finish to win the stage.

I was truly awe struck clapping the winner, BUT like in my sport if what you are seeing is drug induced then it takes away from the achievment, In my sport Mo Farah poses this question, am i seeing a truthfull performance ?
whats your take.
Bringing the tone down a bit Wessy, as an endurance athlete yourself, how are toilet breaks dealt with. Is it just a question of doing a Paula Radcliffe? Bit difficult on a bike.

58Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 15 2020, 13:49

wessy

wessy
El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf
@boltonbonce wrote:
Bringing the tone down a bit Wessy, as an endurance athlete yourself, how are toilet breaks dealt with. Is it just a question of doing a Paula Radcliffe? Bit difficult on a bike.
Every athletes worst nightmare bonce, the toilets before any race are crammed its all about timing, i have always been ok, the longest i ever raced was on the fells for just over 3 1/2 hours. If you think about it the problem is reduced dependant on ability. I was finished and in the pub watching the London marathon after completing the race. so if your out for 5 or 6 hours the chance increases that you may need a break.

In saying that i do have two instances one was the London Marathon i wasn't running but it was an Olympic trial and three of our top ladies all had a stomach bug, due to the importance to qualify they carried on regardless all showing quite clearly the contents of there stomachs. Yuk.

I once raced a 20 miler in Bolton called the Warburton 20, at the 6 mile point my club mate was having stomach cramps this guy was famed for his stories, he always said " i had to go so i shot though a gap in the fence dropped my shorts and let it go, he followed that by saying " as he pulled up his shorts only to see a family having dinner in the conservatory lol

On a serious note most races are short enough to get by and most athletes have a tried and tested regime re food intake and preparation. The worst situation i found was at London. unless you had an elite start you had to leave your hotel perhaps hours before the start to stand in the huge entry you see on TV. so no chance to go prior to the race.

My first London i was in this position i was ok loo wise but trying to fight my way through cost me around 12 minutes (2.48), The other two times i qualified for the elite start just behind all the stars probably about 1000 runners qualified but importantly we had a warm up area and toilets and refreshments i ran 2.36 and 2.38 from that start.

59Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 15 2020, 14:04

boltonbonce

boltonbonce
Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
An Olympic sport in the making Wessy. Toilet racing. Extra marks for technique and content. Very Happy

60Tour de France 2020 - Page 2 Empty Re: Tour de France 2020 on Tue Sep 15 2020, 14:10

wessy

wessy
El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf
@boltonbonce wrote:An Olympic sport in the making Wessy. Toilet racing. Extra marks for technique and content. Very Happy
A Prize for First, second and TURD Very Happy

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