PDA

View Full Version : Le Tour has begun


Fire Haley
07-04-2009, 02:56 PM
Cancellara wins first Tour stage as Armstrong impresses

Monaco - Switzerland's Fabian Cancellara lived up to his own billing by easily winning Saturday's first stage of the 2009 Tour de France, a 15.5km individual time trial in Monaco.

Cancellara, who had predicted the victory, covered the technically complex course in 19 mins 32 seconds, an average speed of 47.6 kph, 18 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher, race favourite Alberto Contador of Spain.

Seven-time Tour champion Lance Armstrong celebrated his comeback to the race after a four-year absence with an impressive tenth place, 40 seconds behind the winner.

Australian Cadel Evans stamped himself as one of the race favourites as he finished fifth, 23 seconds behind the winner but only 5 seconds adrift of Contador, his main rival for the championship.

Armstrong's Astana team also lived up to expectations, placing four riders among the top 10 finishers.

--------------------------------------


The map and info for all the stages (on Versus)

http://www.versus.com/tdf/

tony hipchest
07-04-2009, 03:10 PM
meh. theyre just trying to steal joey chestnuts record shattering thunder.

Fire Haley
07-04-2009, 03:37 PM
Individuals still need a strong team.
It will all be decided in the mountains.

Team Astana is stacked.

Besides Lance and Contador you have Andreas Klöden, Levi Leipheimer and Yaroslav Popovych back.

Indo
07-04-2009, 04:08 PM
Sweet.
I wasn't sure if anyone on here was into cycling. (as the Girl says, "What's so exciting about men on bikes?" She'll never understand...)

Anywho,
Cancellara is always a Beast at the Beginning


PS
now don't go posting all of the Stage results before we have a chance to watch it

Indo
07-04-2009, 04:12 PM
Individuals still need a strong team.
It will all be decided in the mountains.

Team Astana is stacked.

Besides Lance and Contador you have Andreas Klöden, Levi Leipheimer and Yaroslav Popovych back.

as Johann Bruyneel (spelling?) says---"We might as well win"

(although the "We" doesn't seem to have as much impact as it did when "We" were US Postal or Team Discovery....there are rumors that Lance wants to start his own team. I'll have to find the link, but I think I read it on Bicycling.com)

Fire Haley
07-04-2009, 06:55 PM
now don't go posting all of the Stage results before we have a chance to watch it

Yeah yeah - it was just a time trial.

I'm pretty sure this will get buried in "other sports" shortly, so I let the cat outta the bag this one time to see if anyone cared.

Indo
07-05-2009, 12:35 PM
Yeah yeah - it was just a time trial.

I'm pretty sure this will get buried in "other sports" shortly, so I let the cat outta the bag this one time to see if anyone cared.


We care, my friend, we care...:chuckle:
(well, some of us care!)


Actually, I can't wait to see the Team Time Trial----glad they finally brought it back

Fire Haley
07-07-2009, 09:06 AM
Racetracker - live coverage

http://www.versus.com/tourdefrancelive

SCSTILLER
07-07-2009, 11:12 AM
We care, my friend, we care...:chuckle:
(well, some of us care!)


I care Indo, I am an avid cyclist and cyclist fan!

I really want to see Lance not win this one. I am rooting for CVV even though he doesn't have the team surrounding him. I feel bad for Levi, going from contender to domestique, if I was him I would be ticked off!

Indo
07-07-2009, 12:34 PM
I care Indo, I am an avid cyclist and cyclist fan!

I really want to see Lance not win this one. I am rooting for CVV even though he doesn't have the team surrounding him. I feel bad for Levi, going from contender to domestique, if I was him I would be ticked off!

I can't, for the life of me, figure out who CW is...I am drawing a complete blank! And I don't want to go on the TdF websites right now because i don't want to see who won the Team Trial Trial until I get a chance to watch it tonigt.

Do you mean Christian van de Welde?

As for Lance winning---I have mixed feelings about it. Make no mistake, I am a HUGE Lance fan. I saw him win back in Philadelphia when he was 21. He is INTENSE.
There is a part of me that says "he has won 7, time for someone else"--and there are a lot of good possibilities. Contador, Sastre, Evans (who always comes so close), Levi...

But there is also something about his story---Cancer, win 7, retire, come back and do it again...

Levi is a Class Act. Unfortunate for him that he happens to be competing at a time when a Genetic Freak is also competing.

(For those that don't know...Lance is a Genetic Freak:

When he was with US Postal his team went to the Univ. of Wisconsin where they did wind tunnel testing AND physiologic testing. Lance's results showed that

his heart is about 3 times larger than the average human.
His Cardiac output (the amount of blood that the heart circulates through the body in one minute) can approach 36 LITERS/minute---the usual number for elite athletes is about 18-20 liters/minute.
His lungs extract oxygen about 25% more efficiently than the average human.
His muscles clear lactic acid at an amazing rate---after heavy exercise the average human's lactic acid level is 14-16---his is 6-8.
His maximum heart rate is over 200---most elite athlete's have a max around 180


Does anyone ever wonder why he has won the Tour 7 times?

SCSTILLER
07-07-2009, 12:50 PM
Indo,

I did mean Christian VandeVelde (C.V.V.). I liked him in last years tour and thought he rode a great race and would do even better this year, then Astana started stacking the cards.

I read that about Lance's physiological traits, pretty impressive. His heart rate is also near heart failure range when he is at rest. Another thing that makes him great, and I heard this in an interview with him, is that he likes the pain of riding hard. Now that is sick, wish I liked the pain I experience in my legs when I am riding hard on my bike.

I think the Team TT's will be interesting today. I truly beleived that Columbia had the power to stay with Astana today, but after their hard leadout yesterday I am not sure their legs will be ready for a TT. I will see when I get home tonight!

Psyychoward86
07-07-2009, 12:57 PM
Lance has got the tumor-infested balls to win this thing: Again! Make us proud.

SCSTILLER
07-08-2009, 08:13 AM
Is it safe to talk about the team time trial yet? I don't want to ruin it for anyone who happens to have it Tivo'd and hasn't seen it yet

Indo
07-08-2009, 05:33 PM
I've seen it,too. But I can't speak for others

Indo
07-14-2009, 04:39 PM
OK, I'm done waiting....

The TTT was phenomenal!

Contador's attack was douchey. I actually liked him up until that move. He has forced Lance into a proverbial corner, and Lance ain't gonna take too kindly to it in the Alps, IMO

SCSTILLER
07-14-2009, 05:13 PM
I agree that Contador's attack was Bush league, but what was the guy to do? Here he is, it was his team, really the defending TDF champ, and all the hoopla is about Lance. I think he was sending a message to Lance and the rest of the field that "I am the one to beat here" and I truly beleive he is. Yes, Lance can still climb, but I think he is a tad past his prime and Contador will prove it in the mountains. Pretty crappy when two teammates had to battle like this, but that is what happens when you put that many superstars on one team.

I was really impressed with the way VandeVelde (CVV) climbed with everyone else. He looked comfortable and seemed like he could counterattack if needed. Also, that Tony Martin (i think that's his name) from Columbia looks like the real deal in the mountains, but the Alps have always had a way of making riders crack. Lord I cannot wait for the Alps!

Not trying to thread jack here, but I heard that Lance isn't ruling out next year and is thinking about starting his own team. I know it is just here say, but still makes sense to me. Astana is going to have problems, especially with Vinokourov coming back next year after his suspension and still being under contract with Astana, too many Chiefs on that squad. Lance would have the funding to do it if he wanted, I am sure Nike would throw the dough at him and his name alone will get a few more sponsors.

SCSTILLER
07-14-2009, 05:15 PM
Sorry, forgot the TTT! I think that Garmin would have beat Astana if they could have kept their team together. They lost two guys right off the start and only finished with five, I think if Pate wouldn't have made the mistake he did and not gotten dropped off the back, I beleive Garmin would have beat them. We will never know though, that is why they race.

Indo
07-15-2009, 06:04 PM
You may be right about Lance being a little past his prime in the Mtns. Contador just FLEW up that hill! Lance should do well in the individual TT. We'll see how much time he loses in the Alps----I still have mixed feelings about it...

As for Lance forming his own team---I heard that, too
LiveStrong might be a cool name and it would give him an even bigger stage to promote Cancer awareness. And, you're right, sponsors like Trek and Nike might throw some big bucks that way since it will technically be donating to cancer research fundraising...I'm guessing he'll grab Bruyneel, too

Fire Haley
07-15-2009, 08:34 PM
Status quo - the French have their yellow jersey - Astana is happy with that for now. Let the sprinters have their day as they log the miles till the Alps.

I heard the French racing authorities were drug testing Lance every day in the Pyrenees - sometimes twice a day, 3 times in 48hrs is what I heard.
All negative.

They certainly are going out of their way trying to disqualify him.


Never in the history of the Tour has a mountain stage been on the day before the finish in Paris.

THAT will be interesting.

http://www.letour.fr/2009/TDF/COURSE/us/le_parcours.html

SCSTILLER
07-16-2009, 07:59 AM
I agree Indo, Lance is a heck of a TT but I don't think he will make up nearly enough time in the event. Contador is on a mission, and while I am not supporting Contador, I think he will win it overall. Contador has been working on his Time Trialing also and is no slouch in that event.

I am ready for the mountains. These flat stages are boring. the only good part is the last 10K or so when the teams start jockeying to put their sprinters in front.

Killer, the French hate Lance. An American winning "their" race, just might as well have knocked up their daughter. They will do anything to disqualify him. If I was Lance I would ensure that a staff member of the team followed the sample all the way to testing to make sure it wasn't switched. They are mad that they couldn't get him for seven years, because he was clean, and they might do some dirty tactics to get him this year!

Fire Haley
07-16-2009, 11:55 AM
I am ready for the mountains. These flat stages are boring. the only good part is the last 10K or so when the teams start jockeying to put their sprinters in front.

Yep

Unless it rains or a big wreck occurs these flat stages will play out the same just about every time.....peloton will catch the breakaway right on time - sprint finish.

I've been watching the Tour since the LeMond days - I know all about the French.
I remember Lance on team Postal - being spit on by all the German fans on Alpe D'Huez when he beat Ullrich.... funny that Kloeden is his partner on Astana now

Indo
07-16-2009, 01:08 PM
I agree that AC is on a misssion---and he's probably the best cyclist today, but he pissed off Lance on that last Mtn stage. And a pissed off Lance is a VERY motivated and dangerous rider! We shall see...

Check these out

http://www.livestrong.com/lance-armstrong/video/tour-de-france-stage-10-lance-with-mark-cavendish-and-george-hincapie/40ba57d1-9445-4acd-aa75-325e8226f02f/?utm_source=pacelinenewsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=090716


and


http://www.bicycling.com/tourdefrance/article/0,6610,s1-7-123-20007-1,00.html?cm_mmc=Bicycling_tdf_NL-_-2009_07_15-_-tdf-_-why_lance_will_win:drink:


Strickland is a little biased, but we shall see

Fire Haley
07-16-2009, 08:58 PM
Stage 13 - prepping for the Alps (now it gets interesting)


Prepping for the Alps

By Phil Liggett
July 16, 2009

After three flat stages since leaving the Pyrenees in the South of France, the mountains return with the department of the Vosges for stage 13 on Friday. This leads up to the next major mountain crossing of the Alps, which begins on Sunday.

The departments of the Vosges and the Haut Rhine were first used in the Tour in 1905 and the steepness of the climbs can be deceiving.

The Col de la Schlucht is the stepping stone as it rises to a plateau at 1139 meters. At this point, the 166 survivors will have ridden approximately half of the 125 miles from Vittel en route for Colmar.

The first category climb of the Col du Platzerwasel (1193 meters) is far more difficult as it is being traversed from its steepest side for the first time. The summit is five miles above the base of the climb.

A second category climb of the Col du Firstplan with only seven miles left to race is perfect for the strong riders to exercise their authority and we could see the first movement among the leaders overall since the order was established in the Pyrenees a week ago.

silver & black
07-17-2009, 11:49 AM
Do you guys ride?

SCSTILLER
07-17-2009, 03:12 PM
Do you guys ride?

As much as I can! I ride both trails and road.

What the heck, Levi is out. That sucks, i like Levi and he has always been the consumate professional no matter what team he was on or situation he was in. Hope he gets well soon. This will not shake up Astana any, but I feel bad for Levi.

Just got home to start watching the mountain stage. Dog will have to wait to go out!

silver & black
07-17-2009, 05:38 PM
As much as I can! I ride both trails and road.

What the heck, Levi is out. That sucks, i like Levi and he has always been the consumate professional no matter what team he was on or situation he was in. Hope he gets well soon. This will not shake up Astana any, but I feel bad for Levi.

Just got home to start watching the mountain stage. Dog will have to wait to go out!

Cool. I ride mostly road these days. Im average around 100 miles a week.

I wish I could watch the Tour, but my crappy cable co. doesn't carry the station it's on.

Fire Haley
07-17-2009, 10:30 PM
Stage 13 - Awesome climb to watch - rain and fog in the mountains.

Levi done - broken wrist - I didn't even see where he wrecked yesterday.

It'll still come down to Lance vs. Contador in the Alps, I'd say.

Barring any more mishaps...Levi was a great help to the team though...bummer dude.

Fire Haley
07-17-2009, 11:39 PM
I wish I could watch the Tour, but my crappy cable co. doesn't carry the station it's on.

You can watch live on-line in the a.m.....racetracker

http://www.versus.com/tourdefrancelive


who says the middle stages aren't exciting...

Julian Dean And Oscar Freire, Tour De France Cyclists, Hurt In Suspected Air-Rifle Shooting

COLMAR, France — Two Tour de France cyclists were slightly injured Friday in what their teams suspect was an air-rifle shooting.

New Zealand's Julian Dean and Spain's Oscar Freire, a three-time former world champion, were struck while riding in northeast France during the 13th stage.

Dean's right index finger was injured. Freire's team said he was hit in the thigh with a projectile that was removed. Both were expected to ride Saturday.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/07/17/julian-dean-and-oscar-fre_n_238701.html

Fire Haley
07-18-2009, 11:49 PM
All will be washed away now , no more flat lander sprints - to the mountains

Don't blame Astana for taking away Hincapie's yellow - somebody had to pick up the pace.

They weren't going to give George or anyone else a 3-4 minute overall lead going into the final week.

Galax Steeler
07-19-2009, 07:53 AM
Hopefully Lance will turn up the wick in the mountain stages this is where he usually shines.

Fire Haley
07-19-2009, 02:07 PM
Contador has the legs. Blew them all away. He takes the yellow.

Overall

Pos. No. Name Nat. Team Time Gap

1 021 CONTADOR, Alberto ESP AST 63:17:56 00:00:00
2 022 ARMSTRONG, Lance USA AST 63:19:33 00:01:37
3 058 WIGGINS, Bradley GBR GRM 63:19:42 00:01:46
4 023 KLÖDEN, Andréas GER AST 63:20:13 00:02:17
5 031 SCHLECK, Andy LUX SAX 63:20:22 00:02:26


Lance moves to second overall - not much stopping Astana now.
Lot's of big climbs to go though.

SCSTILLER
07-19-2009, 04:27 PM
Contador has the legs. Blew them all away. He takes the yellow.

Overall

Pos. No. Name Nat. Team Time Gap

1 021 CONTADOR, Alberto ESP AST 63:17:56 00:00:00
2 022 ARMSTRONG, Lance USA AST 63:19:33 00:01:37
3 058 WIGGINS, Bradley GBR GRM 63:19:42 00:01:46
4 023 KLÖDEN, Andréas GER AST 63:20:13 00:02:17
5 031 SCHLECK, Andy LUX SAX 63:20:22 00:02:26


Lance moves to second overall - not much stopping Astana now.
Lot's of big climbs to go though.


If I was Lance I would be a little worried right now about Contador. Contador is the better climber and Lance looked a bit tired, no matter what the announcers said. Granted Lance, I think, is a better TT rider, Contador as I have said earlier is no slouch in that department either.

Was rather surprised to see Wiggins up there with the climbers. I thought that he would be assisting CVV but once CVV fell off and he was on his own he did a great job. I was disappointed in VandeVelde, but maybe that crash affected more than they are letting on. I don't think that Wiggins will be able to maintain it throughout the rest of the Alps, but it would be a pleasant surprise if he could.

The big question is, who is Kloden and Popo going to help out, Lance or Contador? Does Bruyneel win the race or go with loyalties. Damn, I should work Versus :chuckle:

Must say though, I was disappointed to see Hincapie not get the yellow jersey yesterday. Yes, i will blame Astana for that as well as Garmin. Hincapie, nor any of the others in that break, posed a threat from today on in the mountains no matter if they won by 5 seconds or three minutes. Hincapie has been a respectable rider, well liked in the peloton, did everything ever asked of him from his team and teammates, and is just a good guy overall for the sport, especially in the U.S. He deserved to wear it at least for one day. Astana, no matter what Lance said, was pushing the pace of peloton for quite a bit, then Garmin took over and finished it. I know it is racing and I understand the dynamics of time, getting the sprinters in position, and all that fun stuff, but Hincapie deserved yellow for at least one day considering this may be his last Tour!

Fire Haley
07-19-2009, 07:50 PM
Lance all but conceded the Tour win to Contador in his post-race interview today. It's over.

He'll be a good teammate and work for the team yellow, maybe get a podium finish for himself too.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-19-2009, 08:03 PM
This year's tour has been disappointing with very few mountain top finishes. Good to finally see some stages that have real drama.

Also good to see the real contenders emerge and Versus can quit knob slobbering all over Lance. The guy is riding outstanding considering his age and time off, but he cant climb with these kids and there is no long ITT for him to get back time on them.

Mont Ventoux is gonna be awesome. It always is.

Fire Haley
07-19-2009, 09:37 PM
They are just now getting to the Alps. This is the best time to watch. (for us spectators!)

2 more mountaintop finishes coming up, a climb on the last day before Paris and with a time trial thrown in to boot.

It doesn't get much better than that.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-19-2009, 10:35 PM
They are just now getting to the Alps. This is the best time to watch. (for us spectators!)

2 more mountaintop finishes coming up, a climb on the last day before Paris and with a time trial thrown in to boot.

It doesn't get much better than that.

I think if they go clockwise then the Pyrenees are more exciting. Lots of great mountaintop finishes there like Luz Ardiden or Superbagnieres. The final week in the mountains is always the best to watch, but when they have mountaintop finishes....even the 2nd week of the tour can be dramatic.

Still, Mt .Ventoux will be the final brutal chapter this year. I think it was the 87 tour when they had an ITT up it and it was just awesome to see who suffered and survived and who bonked.

Indo
07-20-2009, 05:08 PM
Must say though, I was disappointed to see Hincapie not get the yellow jersey yesterday. Yes, i will blame Astana for that as well as Garmin. Hincapie, nor any of the others in that break, posed a threat from today on in the mountains no matter if they won by 5 seconds or three minutes. Hincapie has been a respectable rider, well liked in the peloton, did everything ever asked of him from his team and teammates, and is just a good guy overall for the sport, especially in the U.S. He deserved to wear it at least for one day. Astana, no matter what Lance said, was pushing the pace of peloton for quite a bit, then Garmin took over and finished it. I know it is racing and I understand the dynamics of time, getting the sprinters in position, and all that fun stuff, but Hincapie deserved yellow for at least one day considering this may be his last Tour!

There is no doubt that George has put in his time for Cycling and I would have loved to have seen him in Yellow, but remember that there are no gifts in the Tour. I think that George would pose a threat if he was given 3 minutes. That's why Astana rode to keep the breakaway to around 9minutes (8:50, actually), before they pulled up---then Garmin started riding. Garmin and Columbia HATE each other, so I sort of understand that they wanted to reel the breakaway back in.

Go and watch the last 10km of the race. What disappoints me so much is watching George "sit on" and not do much work during the last 10km. He HAD to know that he was close to Yellow...he should have been riding an individual Time Trial at that point. I think he probably would have picked up the 5 seconds if he would have put his head down and suffered for 10 kms...

maybe he just didn't have anything left at that point

steelreserve
07-20-2009, 05:53 PM
Lance all but conceded the Tour win to Contador in his post-race interview today. It's over.

He'll be a good teammate and work for the team yellow, maybe get a podium finish for himself too.

I've never quite understood that concessionary mentality you find in cycling ... 90 seconds just doesn't seem like that much to me over a course that long. I mean, you really could explain it by just one guy having a great day. And I've seen people make up far more than that in one stage alone. But whatever he says -- if he thinks it's over, I'll believe him.

I wonder if Armstrong is suffering in the hills more from his age, or just not being fully in shape. From what I remember, he didn't have a hell of a lot of time to train for this race, on top of which there was an injury thrown into the middle of it. Maybe that's why he wants to try it again next year.

Fire Haley
07-20-2009, 07:39 PM
Still some big mountains to climb, you never know what can happen, but Contador is obviously the class of the field on the climbs. He accelerated on the steepest parts and left them all like they were standing still. Nobody could respond.

Lance is 38 years old and out of cycling for 4 years, ya know. It's amazing he's still in a position to win.

SteelersinCA
07-20-2009, 08:38 PM
Wasn't it in 04 that he was 1:25 behind and still won? Granted 5 years ago but still.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-21-2009, 01:15 AM
Wasn't it in 04 that he was 1:25 behind and still won? Granted 5 years ago but still.

I dont think so. He took the jersey from Thomas Voekler in 04 and Voekler was never a real threat to win. He could still come back and win some time, but it would be extremely classless to attack your own teammate with that much of a lead on him.

steelreserve
07-21-2009, 01:09 PM
I dont think so. He took the jersey from Thomas Voekler in 04 and Voekler was never a real threat to win. He could still come back and win some time, but it would be extremely classless to attack your own teammate with that much of a lead on him.

I dunno ... seems kind of silly to me that winning one stage dictates that you should win the race, when there are several more stages just like it coming up. It's not unheard of for there to be swings of a few minutes at a time in the mountains.

Maybe I never fully grasped the notion of teamwork in cycling, which seems like basically an individual sport. It's a lot like swimming, which I did competitively for more than a decade. I guess I just grew up with the mentality that you always focus on your own race and bust your ass to get the best time you possibly can, and you let the chips fall where they may. If that means you wind up beating your teammates, then hey -- if you want to win the race, you've got to be the fastest, so go faster next time.

It's like, if Contador really is that much stronger than the rest of the field, nobody's going to be able to make up that ground anyway. But it doesn't mean you shouldn't try. You don't see the other Americans getting out of Michael Phelps' way because he's on track to win the most medals or something. I never got the mentality of basically rolling over and dying that you see in this sport.

SCSTILLER
07-21-2009, 02:32 PM
steelreserve, cycling is much more of a team sport than most people think. You could have the strongest rider in the world surrounded by the weakest team, and he will have a hard time winning. The teammates pull for him, shuttle water back and forth for him, protect him in the peloton, help him back into the pack in the event of a bike malfunction, and help break up breakaways if they pose a threat to their leaders time.

One reason Lance won so many tours is he had, on most occasions, the strongest team around him. On the big climbs Lance would always have one or two other Postal/Discovery riders with him limiting his work and putting the pressure on the surrounding riders. Then, when the surrounding riders were looking like they wee at their limit, Lance would be OK and be able to make his move. Now, with Astana having the Yellow Jersey everyone on the team now has to rally to protect the yellow jersey and help Contador. That doesn't mean that Lance can't go for a podium finish, just that he knows he is now a support rider for Contador. If the roles were reversed and Lance was in the yellow, then Contador would be doing the work for him. That is just how it works.

I won't let the cat out of the bag, but what a great stage today. It really showed off some strenghts and weaknesses.

SCSTILLER
07-21-2009, 02:37 PM
There is no doubt that George has put in his time for Cycling and I would have loved to have seen him in Yellow, but remember that there are no gifts in the Tour. I think that George would pose a threat if he was given 3 minutes. That's why Astana rode to keep the breakaway to around 9minutes (8:50, actually), before they pulled up---then Garmin started riding. Garmin and Columbia HATE each other, so I sort of understand that they wanted to reel the breakaway back in.

Go and watch the last 10km of the race. What disappoints me so much is watching George "sit on" and not do much work during the last 10km. He HAD to know that he was close to Yellow...he should have been riding an individual Time Trial at that point. I think he probably would have picked up the 5 seconds if he would have put his head down and suffered for 10 kms...

maybe he just didn't have anything left at that point

Don't get me wrong Indo, I agree with you on most everything except the Hincapie posing a threat in yellow. He just cannot climb with those guys, but anyways. I think he was wiped being in that breakaway that long, then at the end when it was falling apart he might have felt he had enough of a lead or maybe the tactics he was using didn't pan out, it happens. also, who knows what they were telling him from the team car. Would have been nice for him to have yellow, and I feel bad for him, but that is the way the race played out.

The mountains are here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!

Fire Haley
07-21-2009, 02:43 PM
Team Astana all the way now, protect the yellow. Great ride by Lance.

steelreserve
07-21-2009, 05:47 PM
steelreserve, cycling is much more of a team sport than most people think. You could have the strongest rider in the world surrounded by the weakest team, and he will have a hard time winning. The teammates pull for him, shuttle water back and forth for him, protect him in the peloton, help him back into the pack in the event of a bike malfunction, and help break up breakaways if they pose a threat to their leaders time.

One reason Lance won so many tours is he had, on most occasions, the strongest team around him. On the big climbs Lance would always have one or two other Postal/Discovery riders with him limiting his work and putting the pressure on the surrounding riders. Then, when the surrounding riders were looking like they wee at their limit, Lance would be OK and be able to make his move. Now, with Astana having the Yellow Jersey everyone on the team now has to rally to protect the yellow jersey and help Contador. That doesn't mean that Lance can't go for a podium finish, just that he knows he is now a support rider for Contador. If the roles were reversed and Lance was in the yellow, then Contador would be doing the work for him. That is just how it works.

Well, I guess I never have done competitive cycling, so I just don't get how that works. I never quite understood how you help your teammate from a different bike, since he's ultimately the one who has to pedal the bike himself, and nothing you can do is going to give him more strength or take away strength from anyone else. Seemed to me like winning a race like that would depend 99% on who has the endurance to keep going balls-out the longest.

Like I said, I probably don't know enough about cycling to understand how things like "protecting him in the peloton" are supposed to work or how they make a difference. Which I guess is why it seems odd to me.

Indo
07-21-2009, 06:33 PM
Well, I guess I never have done competitive cycling, so I just don't get how that works. I never quite understood how you help your teammate from a different bike, since he's ultimately the one who has to pedal the bike himself, and nothing you can do is going to give him more strength or take away strength from anyone else. Seemed to me like winning a race like that would depend 99% on who has the endurance to keep going balls-out the longest.

Like I said, I probably don't know enough about cycling to understand how things like "protecting him in the peloton" are supposed to work or how they make a difference. Which I guess is why it seems odd to me.

Actually, there is a lot you can do to help another rider...

I don't know if you've ever watched cycling, but you should watch a little to understand...
While in the peloton, you will see one team come to the front and form a straight line (called a "paceline"). The person in front is doing all of the work---pushing thru the wind, etc. Each of the next riders is actually "drafting" him (similar to an Indy car driver or a flock of geese flying in a "V"). Those that are drafting are actually using approx. 30% less energy compared to the first guy. When the first guy gets tired he pulls away and the next one takes over "pulling' (as it is called) while the others just "sit on". The team keeps repeating this maneuver (go to the front and "pull' until you are too blasted, then go to the back and "sit on" while the next guy pulls, etc., etc.) A team can repeat this throughout a stage (generally 100-130miles)until they get to the end when their GUY---team leader(sprinter or climber) comes forward to do his thing. The leader is generally less exhausted than the rest of his team because they did all of the work to get him to the point of the sprint/climb/whatever.
Also, the "workers" are called "Domestiques"---some of them "ride Tempo" at the front of the peloton as described above and some of them ride all the way to the back to the team car to pick up water bottles,etc for the rest of the team. This means that they must then bust @ss to get back to the front to give everyone else the water.
It's confusing until you watch it---then it makes sense
It's more than "men riding bikes" ...there is a whole complex strategy to getting your guy on the Podium in Paris

Indo
07-21-2009, 06:47 PM
Steelreserve,
I found this link that explains some of the tactics in cycling


http://bikeracing.suite101.com/article.cfm/the_importance_of_drafting_in_a_bicycle_race


There is also a good animation of the concept of drafting that they show during the televised stages of the Tour. Vesrsus may have it on their website( www.versus.com), but I don't want to go to the website right now until I have a chance to watch today's stage (the website will give away the winner, and I want to watch it!)

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-22-2009, 04:17 PM
Great stage today. Contador is clearly the best climber in the tour and Lance rode like a true teammate by marking Wiggins the final 2 climbs.

steelreserve
07-22-2009, 04:57 PM
Actually, there is a lot you can do to help another rider...

I don't know if you've ever watched cycling, but you should watch a little to understand...
While in the peloton, you will see one team come to the front and form a straight line (called a "paceline"). The person in front is doing all of the work---pushing thru the wind, etc. Each of the next riders is actually "drafting" him (similar to an Indy car driver or a flock of geese flying in a "V"). Those that are drafting are actually using approx. 30% less energy compared to the first guy. When the first guy gets tired he pulls away and the next one takes over "pulling' (as it is called) while the others just "sit on". The team keeps repeating this maneuver (go to the front and "pull' until you are too blasted, then go to the back and "sit on" while the next guy pulls, etc., etc.) A team can repeat this throughout a stage (generally 100-130miles)until they get to the end when their GUY---team leader(sprinter or climber) comes forward to do his thing. The leader is generally less exhausted than the rest of his team because they did all of the work to get him to the point of the sprint/climb/whatever.

That explains a lot. I think the main issue was that I didn't think drafting actually worked very well on bikes. But it sounds like it's a much bigger deal than I thought. I mean, I've seen cycling races before and just thought that was something they did that only made a tiny difference.

Fire Haley
07-22-2009, 06:53 PM
Contador blows up his teammates again - this time Klöden

Overall:

1.CONTADOR AST ...
2.SCHLECK SAX 2:26
3.SCHLECK SAX 3:25
4.ARMSTRONG AST 3:55
5.KLÖDEN AST 4:44
6.WIGGINS GRM 4:53

Lance is a minute and half behind Andy Schleck - needs to get it back in the time trial tomorrow.

SCSTILLER
07-22-2009, 09:51 PM
Contador blows up his teammates again - this time Klöden

Overall:

1.CONTADOR AST ...
2.SCHLECK SAX 2:26
3.SCHLECK SAX 3:25
4.ARMSTRONG AST 3:55
5.KLÖDEN AST 4:44
6.WIGGINS GRM 4:53

Lance is a minute and half behind Andy Schleck - needs to get it back in the time trial tomorrow.

I think that you will see Armstrong in second after tomorrow's TT, then he will fall back to fourth once the Schleck brothers start working together again. He may make it to third, but no higher. I will say though, he has had some great accelerations on the mountains, and if he can keep those up my predictions will be blown out of the water.

Impressed with Wiggins so far, didn't think coming into this tour that he would be anywhere near the top ten, let alone at six. Good riding, and think he would be doing better if he had help up there, but clearly CVV's hip is still affecting him.

Indo, not trying to sound like I am coming off disrespectful/not trying to sound like an a$$, but do still think that Hincapie in yellow posed a real threat once in the mountains? Just curious, that's all. Not trying to beat a dead horse, I understood where you were coming from with Garmin hating HTC and Hincapie not riding harder at the end, and I agreed with you on some points. Just want your opinion now on his threat to the podium.

One more thing, saw a blip on ESPN about Lance finding an American sponsor for Astana next year as the sponsor for Astana is, well, broke! Curious to see who it is, and I think it said that Lance may not ride for them and start his own team like what was discussed before. HMMM, maybe Team WaWa instead of 7-11 :chuckle:

Fire Haley
07-22-2009, 10:17 PM
I hope Lance can hold on to a podium spot - it'll be close. The time trial is about it for gaining any time.

They are done with the Alps, only one more real climb - stage 20

http://l.yimg.com/i/ng/sp/tdf2000/20090630/09/703779053.png

Then they're in Paris.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-23-2009, 10:48 AM
Contador blows up his teammates again - this time Klöden

.

Kind of tough for the team leader to "blow up his teammates".

Strange how nobody ever said Greg Lemond was "blowing up " Andy Hampsten of team 7-Eleven in 1986 or Lance Armstrong was blowing up Tyler Hamilton of US Postal in 1999.

The team leader is designed to win the race for his team and Contador is the leader of Team Astana.

Fire Haley
07-23-2009, 12:36 PM
Kind of tough for the team leader to "blow up his teammates".

It was still a tactical mistake.

The funny thing was watching him swivel his head back every 10 seconds to see if Kloeden was catching up. "DUH - where'd he go?"
Johan must have been really letting him have it in the earpiece.

Contador spanked them all today.

Overall

1.CONTADOR AST...
2.SCHLECK SAX 4:11
3.ARMSTRONG AST 5:25
4.WIGGINS GRM 5:36
5.KLÖDEN AST 5:38
6.SCHLECK SAX 5:59

Lance barely hanging on to 3rd spot on the podium - it's gonna come down to the last climb on Mont Ventoux.

That's gonna be a wild ride.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-23-2009, 02:39 PM
It was still a tactical mistake.

The funny thing was watching him swivel his head back every 10 seconds to see if Kloeden was catching up. "DUH - where'd he go?"
Johan must have been really letting him have it in the earpiece.


Lance barely hanging on to 3rd spot on the podium - it's gonna come down to the last climb on Mont Ventoux.

That's gonna be a wild ride.

I dont think it was a tactical mistake at all. He ended up with the same time as the Schleck's on that day's stage. If the Schleck bros. could not cover his attack then he would have probably solo-ed to the fininsh and got more time.

I dont think Wiggins will outclimb Armstrong on Ventoux, so the order could pretty much stay the same unless Frank Schleck goes. Basically it will be up to Lance to close most of the attacks on saturday and keep his podium spot.

Fire Haley
07-23-2009, 07:55 PM
Basically it will be up to Lance to close most of the attacks on saturday and keep his podium spot.

yeah - The team will still protect the yellow.

As far as the podium spots up for grabs...
Contador has the maillot jaune, everyone else will have to get what they can on their own now.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-23-2009, 09:18 PM
yeah - The team will still protect the yellow.

As far as the podium spots up for grabs...
Contador has the maillot jaune, everyone else will have to get what they can on their own now.

Yeah, but what I am saying is that Armstrong and Kloden will be the first to close down any breaks by anybody........but they still have a lot of ground to make up to get in yellow.

Basically they will try and cover everything they can until half way up Ventoux and Lance will probably be the guy marking Wiggins and Frank Schleck the most so they dont get on the podium instead of him.

Indo
07-24-2009, 11:46 AM
Indo, not trying to sound like I am coming off disrespectful/not trying to sound like an a$$, but do still think that Hincapie in yellow posed a real threat once in the mountains? Just curious, that's all. Not trying to beat a dead horse, I understood where you were coming from with Garmin hating HTC and Hincapie not riding harder at the end, and I agreed with you on some points. Just want your opinion now on his threat to the podium.

One more thing, saw a blip on ESPN about Lance finding an American sponsor for Astana next year as the sponsor for Astana is, well, broke! Curious to see who it is, and I think it said that Lance may not ride for them and start his own team like what was discussed before. HMMM, maybe Team WaWa instead of 7-11 :chuckle:



You're not being an @ss at all...The forums are for discussion, and that's what you are doing---and you happen to be right. Georgie may have been a threat 5-6 years ago, but he just doesn't have the explosiveness any more. He is a great super-domestique, but not really a contender...
Heck, even Lance said, "I just can't accelerate like the young guys anymore" (or, something to that effect). But when he did accelerate to close the gaps in both of the two stages (what, 16 & 17, I think) I was screaming "Dance, Lance, Dance!!"

As for Lance's new team:

http://www.livestrong.com/lance-armstrong/video/radioshack-and-lance-to-form-new-cycling-team-in-2010/5687253c-7dc3-45d2-aae5-9d028d738b21/?utm_source=pacelinenewsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=090723

Indo
07-24-2009, 11:56 AM
I dont think it was a tactical mistake at all. He ended up with the same time as the Schleck's on that day's stage. If the Schleck bros. could not cover his attack then he would have probably solo-ed to the fininsh and got more time.

It was not a tactical mistake individually, but it clearly showed (again) that he is not a team player---

If he doesn't accelerate and drop Kloden all 4 (Contador, Kloden, A. and F. Schleck) stay together until the final Kms of the race. As long as AC stays close to the Schlecks their relative time gaps do not change...This would have given Kloden a decent chance at a Stage win, which doesn't hurt AC at all, and helps out his teammate and the Sponsor by giving a win to Kloden

A tactical TEAM mistake...

Lance has been a consummate TEAM player---sitting on Wiggins and making sure that he didn't bring him across to the others, not chasing AC on Petit St. Bernard, etc
In each of his previous TdF wins Lance gave all of his winnings (something like $400,000 per TdF) to his team. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that I don't think AC will do that---he seems to have little respect for the TEAM and doesn't seem to understand that he could not win without them

Indo
07-24-2009, 12:04 PM
http://www.bicycling.com/tourdefrance/article/0,6610,s1-7-123-20184-1,00.html?cm_mmc=Bicycling_tdf_NL-_-2009_07_23-_-tdf-_-communication_breakdown

Fire Haley
07-24-2009, 04:03 PM
Good find

At the finish in Le Grand Bornand, Johan Bruyneel could no longer hide his frustration. "I'm not happy about Alberto's attack on the Colombiere," he said. "The goal was to take time out of Bradley Wiggins and we were doing that. But it was not necessary to attack on the Colombiere. Before that moment we were looking at a one, two, three finish in Paris. Now we're looking more likely at a one, four, five finish."


No wonder Lance and Johan are starting their own team next year with Radio Shack.

Nothing happening today - it all comes down to that last pointy thing at the end tomorrow to see if Lance/Kloden can get a podium spot.

http://l.yimg.com/i/ng/sp/tdf2000/20090630/09/703779053.png

Indo
07-24-2009, 05:22 PM
Also, remember that when Lance retired he said that one of his biggest regrets was that he never won a Stage on Mt Ventoux...he "gave" a win to Marco Pantini back in 2000 (? maybe 2001) when he sat up at the line and let Pantini cross. Pantini then went on to make a big deal about it and said it was disrespectful :blah::blah::blah:

Lance then took on his "NoGifts" policy after that...

I'm guessing that he would love to get a Stage win on the big boy, but I think he's gonna have his hands full just trying to keep Wiggins away---not to mention A(-hole) Contador's latest exploits and general disrespect for Team Astana

SCSTILLER
07-24-2009, 09:33 PM
Look everyone, I understand that Contadors been riding a selfish TDF, but part of me thinks it might be a little warranted. By that I mean, here he is, the real defending TDF champ, Giro d'Italia, and the other big one I cannot think of right now, and here comes Lance and you are possibly going to be relegated to second fiddle on your team, you, the champ. I would be a little ticked off for one, and would be riding with a "to hell with them" attitude. Who knows what Bruyneel was saying on the bus and in the meetings, might have made AC think what about me. I do think he is an arrogant rider, but part of me understands why he may be doing so.

Boring ride today, nothing too exciting. Looking forward to Ventoux, but that just means the end is near and not looking forward to that. I hope they bring back the Tour De Georgia next year, that is always fun to watch.

OK, two things, who do you think is going to be on the podium? And two, who, from watching them ride this year, would you like to see on the podium.

On the podium:
AC
A. Shleck
Lance/F. Shleck

Who I would like to see on the podium:
Wiggins (riding a surprising tour)

Fire Haley
07-25-2009, 06:50 PM
No attacks by Contador today. He kept on the wheel of Andy, and Lance shadowed Frank.

Perfect tactics on this climb.

The old fart responded to every challenge.......to keep his podium spot, but the young legs of Contador and Andy Schleck showed their stuff.

Great, great Tour this year. Congrats to all the riders.

1.CONTADOR AST....
2.SCHLECK SAX 4:11
3.ARMSTRONG AST 5: 24
4.WIGGINS GRM :6: 01
5.SCHLECK SAX 6:04
6.KLÖDEN AST 6" 42

SCSTILLER
07-25-2009, 06:56 PM
Your right Killer, what a great Stage, and a great tour.

I loved watching Andy do everything in his power to break his brother from Lance's grip, but just couldn't do it. I really thought, even though I was rooting for him to make the podium, that Wiggins would crack but he held his own and his spot and did a great job. Lance and Contador kept everyone in their reach, didn't let the threats get away from them.

Tomorrow, time to see the sprinters play. I think it will be the missile again, just too good of a sprinter and a great team to lead him out.

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-25-2009, 10:37 PM
I expected a bigger attack by F. Scheck and then Lance would have to close it down....but Frank didnt have it to make a run at the thing. It was pretty much non eventful, but played out that the top 3 didnt change much.

I'm torn about Armstrong and his lack of comment pre race when asked about Contador possibly helping him maintain his 3rd position. Lance basically gave a no comment.....when the classy thing to do in his position would be to say that..." Team Astana has the yellow jersey and our goal is to keep it. "

If he could be a gracious 37 year old with more Tour wins than anybody else and take the high road I could really respect him. Instead he seems to be a self centered guy who expects teammates to support him, but doesnt reciprocate.

MasterOfPuppets
07-26-2009, 01:00 AM
wow, here i thought only europeans pay'd attention to this stuff ...:popcorn:

silver & black
07-26-2009, 09:31 AM
I expected a bigger attack by F. Scheck and then Lance would have to close it down....but Frank didnt have it to make a run at the thing. It was pretty much non eventful, but played out that the top 3 didnt change much.

I'm torn about Armstrong and his lack of comment pre race when asked about Contador possibly helping him maintain his 3rd position. Lance basically gave a no comment.....when the classy thing to do in his position would be to say that..." Team Astana has the yellow jersey and our goal is to keep it. "

If he could be a gracious 37 year old with more Tour wins than anybody else and take the high road I could really respect him. Instead he seems to be a self centered guy who expects teammates to support him, but doesnt reciprocate.

That's been Lance's MO for as long as long as I can remember. He is without a doubt one of the greatest talents cycling has ever seen, but, he is also an egotistical, pompous ass.. I was hoping he wouldn't come back.... but I knew his ego wouldn't allow him to stay away.

Fire Haley
07-26-2009, 11:40 AM
Ha ha! Now all the Lance haters come out.

Oh yeah - he's sooooooo arrogant.


Contador's too good: Armstrong

"OLD fart" Lance Armstrong admits teammate Alberto Contador is so good he would have beaten him in at least three of his seven Tour de France victories.

"I can't complain; for an old fart coming in here and getting on the podium with these young guys is not so bad," said Armstrong with a grin after he and Contador stuck with Schleck's repeated surges up Mont Ventoux.

Armstrong said that even at his peak while winning the tour from 1999-2005, he may have lost to his Spanish teammate.

"Contador is that good, so I don't see how I would have been higher than that," said the American, who returned to the tour this year after a three-year retirement.

"I think his performance this year would have beaten my performances in '01, and '04 and '05."

He added that Contador was better than Jan Ullrich, one of his biggest rivals during the years that he won his seven tours. "Absolutely," he said. "Far better."

After being tight lipped on the issue for most of the tour, Contador finally conceded that there was a rift between him and Armstrong, but added that it was caused by both wanting to win the tour.

http://www.theage.com.au/news/sport/tourdefrance/contadors-too-good-armstrong/2009/07/26/1248546629731.html


Gee, all these world class athletes have an ego - go figure.

silver & black
07-26-2009, 12:44 PM
Ha ha! Now all the Lance haters come out.

Oh yeah - he's sooooooo arrogant.


Contador's too good: Armstrong

"OLD fart" Lance Armstrong admits teammate Alberto Contador is so good he would have beaten him in at least three of his seven Tour de France victories.

"I can't complain; for an old fart coming in here and getting on the podium with these young guys is not so bad," said Armstrong with a grin after he and Contador stuck with Schleck's repeated surges up Mont Ventoux.

Armstrong said that even at his peak while winning the tour from 1999-2005, he may have lost to his Spanish teammate.

"Contador is that good, so I don't see how I would have been higher than that," said the American, who returned to the tour this year after a three-year retirement.

"I think his performance this year would have beaten my performances in '01, and '04 and '05."

He added that Contador was better than Jan Ullrich, one of his biggest rivals during the years that he won his seven tours. "Absolutely," he said. "Far better."

After being tight lipped on the issue for most of the tour, Contador finally conceded that there was a rift between him and Armstrong, but added that it was caused by both wanting to win the tour.

http://www.theage.com.au/news/sport/tourdefrance/contadors-too-good-armstrong/2009/07/26/1248546629731.html


Gee, all these world class athletes have an ego - go figure.

I don't recall saying I hated him... only that he is is a pompous ass.

Of course world class athletes have an ego. It's just funny how it doesn't matter as long as it's the athlete/team you support. :wink02:

Fire Haley
07-26-2009, 01:05 PM
It's just funny how it doesn't matter as long as it's the athlete/team you support. :wink02:

I just remember the all the extreme hatred all of Europe had/has for American riders and especially Armstrong as he stole "their" race. Go Lance!

silver & black
07-26-2009, 01:41 PM
I just remember the all the extreme hatred all of Europe had/has for American riders and especially Armstrong as he stole "their" race. Go Lance!


LOL... I hear you on that. France has no love for Lance at all. There has been no love for American riders since Greg LeMond kicked their ass 3 times! :chuckle:

Fire Haley
07-26-2009, 02:11 PM
btw Canvendish had an amazing tour.

6 stage wins is crazy - and he made it look easy.

I think they said the team selections will come out in Sep/Oct. We'll see who Lance and Johan pickup for Team Radio Shack.
We know Contador won't be there.

I think next year will be even better.

Lance is still hungry, I'd say this pic says it all.

http://assets.nydailynews.com/img/2009/07/27/amd_lance1.jpg

SCSTILLER
07-26-2009, 05:33 PM
btw Canvendish had an amazing tour.

6 stage wins is crazy - and he made it look easy.

I think they said the team selections will come out in Sep/Oct. We'll see who Lance and Johan pickup for Team Radio Shack.
We know Contador won't be there.

I think next year will be even better.

Lance is still hungry, I'd say this pic says it all.

http://assets.nydailynews.com/img/2009/07/27/amd_lance1.jpg

Wow, that pic does say it all!

As fo rthe team selections, I could see Lance and Johan making hard runs at Levi, Popo, and Kloden. Popo is a workhorse on every stage, and Kloden and Levi could help Lance out in the mountains. I am not sure that Levi would go though, I see him maybe heading to Columbia to be the leader of that team. He is a good enough rider to be the leader of his own team, when he was with Gerolsteiner he didn't have the support cast around him as Gerolsteiner was pretty weak overall. Will be interesting to see how Astana breaks up and how Radio Shack forms.

Great Tour overall! Sad to see it's over!

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-26-2009, 05:42 PM
LOL... I hear you on that. France has no love for Lance at all. There has been no love for American riders since Greg LeMond kicked their ass 3 times! :chuckle:

Lemond never really "kicked their ass" the way Lance did in any of his wins. If Lemond doesnt get shot, he probably wins 5 or 6 tours. Lemond was probably the best rider in 1985, but supported Bernard Hinault as he was the team leader (the same way Miguel Indurain did for Pedro Delgado in 1991). Lance should have been on another team instead of Astana. It was like bringing Brett Favre in to compete with Roethilisberger for the starting QB job in camp.

The American rider that probably gets the least amount of credit from US fans, based on what he accomplished was probably Andy Hampsten. Hampsten is such a fan favorite in Europe that he retired there, married an Italian girl and rode his last contract for an Italian team.

silver & black
07-26-2009, 07:34 PM
Lemond never really "kicked their ass" the way Lance did in any of his wins. If Lemond doesnt get shot, he probably wins 5 or 6 tours. Lemond was probably the best rider in 1985, but supported Bernard Hinault as he was the team leader (the same way Miguel Indurain did for Pedro Delgado in 1991). Lance should have been on another team instead of Astana. It was like bringing Brett Favre in to compete with Roethilisberger for the starting QB job in camp.

The American rider that probably gets the least amount of credit from US fans, based on what he accomplished was probably Andy Hampsten. Hampsten is such a fan favorite in Europe that he retired there, married an Italian girl and rode his last contract for an Italian team.


He may not have "kicked their ass" the way Lance did, but he was still the first American to win "their" race... and he did it 3 times... much to their dismay. :rofl:

El-Gonzo Jackson
07-26-2009, 10:29 PM
He may not have "kicked their ass" the way Lance did, but he was still the first American to win "their" race... and he did it 3 times... much to their dismay. :rofl:

I dont think it was to any European's dismay that Lemond won that tour in '86. Most knowledgeable cycling fans in '85 were aware that Greg Lemond was a better cyclist than Bernard Hinault and Greg paid his dues by helping the french legend win his 5th tour in '85.

In 1986, Lemond was promised by Hinault that he would win the tour for the fench La Vie Claire team and when Hinault had a strong day in the Pyrenees he failed to ride for the team leader Lemond. Then Lemond asserted himself in the ITT and Hinault rode again for the team leader Lemond.

In essence, in '86 Hinault rode for himself and not the team leader Lemond (and US fans criticized Hinault), much in the same way Lance rode for himself and not the team leader Contador (and U.S. fans criticized Contador). The only real criticism of Lemond by the europeans was his being the first to use Aero bars in the ITT and his winning the tour in 90 without winning a stage.

LeMond was a much more popular champion than Lance in Europe, mostly because Lemond adhered to the culture of the sport of cycling, while Lance in his youth did not honor the rules of the sport, like attacking when a rival had a flat tire. Lance is still the greatest champion to ever ride the tour.

Indo
07-27-2009, 12:14 PM
Lance is still the greatest champion to ever ride the tour.

While I AM a Lance fan ( and , yes, he is a pompous ass, at times) I don't think he is the greatest champion to ever ride the TdF...
even Lance says that that honor goes to Eddie Merckx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eddy_Merckx

the man was just insane on a bike

SCSTILLER
07-27-2009, 02:21 PM
While I AM a Lance fan ( and , yes, he is a pompous ass, at times) I don't think he is the greatest champion to ever ride the TdF...
even Lance says that that honor goes to Eddie Merckx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eddy_Merckx

the man was just insane on a bike

People need to remember one thing about comparing Lance with other TDF riders. Lance never rode the other grand tours (Giro D'Italia and Vuelta a Espana). His whole training session, build up rides, and prep times went toward the TDF, and that was it. If he could have won the other two and the TDF with regularity, then he would be classified up there with Merckx, but not until then. Heck, Contador has won more Grand Tours (different races) by winning the TDF, Giro, and Veulta a Espana than Lance has, TDF. Don't get me wrong, winnning the TDF is a tremendous feat, but to go down as the greatest rider ever, Lance would have needed to win the others plus the TDF to surpass Merckx

Indo
07-28-2009, 02:28 PM
So...Armstrong says that Contador is "that good", but Contador says that he never has respected Armstrong---"I have never had admiration for him and I never will"

http://www.bicycling.com/tourdefrance/article/0,6610,s1-7-123-20302-1,00.html?cm_mmc=Bicycling_tdf_NL-_-2009_07_28-_-tdf-_-contador_the_matador

It's Official----he's a jack@ss

SCSTILLER
07-28-2009, 05:54 PM
Agreed Indo, AC is pompous prick. One hell of a rider, but a pompous prick. Lance is too though, has been reported many times and look at his comments about Sastre and CVV. I think it is two strong riders with extremely big heads, who don't want to concede to each other, and it was made worse by them being on the same team.

The TDF next year is going to have some firewords, with a little soap opera drama thrown in!

Indo, do you think Levi will join Radio Shack or go off to try to be the lead on another team?

Indo
07-28-2009, 06:37 PM
The TDF next year is going to have some firewords, with a little soap opera drama thrown in!

Indo, do you think Levi will join Radio Shack or go off to try to be the lead on another team?

Good question---I have been wondering that myself. Levi is a class act, and VERY talented. As somebody posted above (was it you?) that he just didn't have the right support when he was on Gerolsteiner (or Rabobank, for that matter).He and Lance are friends; and when he gets back from his injury I just can't see him on any other team...Astana will be banking on Vinokourov again, and all of the other teams already are fairly situated. I think he will have the same arrangement that Hincapie and Lance have had---like George, Levi will ride for Lance at the TdF and Lance will ride for Levi at the Tour Of California (and perhaps other races...). So my guess is---yes, Levi with Radioshack
The next interesting question---do you think George will stay in cycling for another year or two (instead of retiring, as he has said) to ride with Lance again? My guess is---yes. But we will see

As far as the fireworks next year----AC is a great rider; can't take that away from him. But can he win without Bruyneel (the best in the business) and without a stellar supporting team that he had in Discovery and Astana? He pretty much did nothing when he was with Liberty Seguras (like Heras, who was an amazing super-domestique for Lance with USPS, but sucked when he had no team)

SCSTILLER
07-29-2009, 08:27 AM
Good question---I have been wondering that myself. Levi is a class act, and VERY talented. As somebody posted above (was it you?) that he just didn't have the right support when he was on Gerolsteiner (or Rabobank, for that matter).He and Lance are friends; and when he gets back from his injury I just can't see him on any other team...Astana will be banking on Vinokourov again, and all of the other teams already are fairly situated. I think he will have the same arrangement that Hincapie and Lance have had---like George, Levi will ride for Lance at the TdF and Lance will ride for Levi at the Tour Of California (and perhaps other races...). So my guess is---yes, Levi with Radioshack
The next interesting question---do you think George will stay in cycling for another year or two (instead of retiring, as he has said) to ride with Lance again? My guess is---yes. But we will see

As far as the fireworks next year----AC is a great rider; can't take that away from him. But can he win without Bruyneel (the best in the business) and without a stellar supporting team that he had in Discovery and Astana? He pretty much did nothing when he was with Liberty Seguras (like Heras, who was an amazing super-domestique for Lance with USPS, but sucked when he had no team)

I agree with you on Levi, and I don't. The reason I agree with you is that, yes, they will help each other win their assigned races, and Lance will pass the torch in a year or two on to Levi (age depending, not sure how old Levi is).
The reason I don't is because maybe Levi feels he is good enough to be the leader of his own team, and someone like Columbia with Martin, Kirchen, possibly big George, and others would be able to support him in the mountains. Either place he goes he is going to be one hell of a team rider or leader.

As for big George, I don't know. Is he under contract with Columbia? Also, he seemed adament about it being his last tour, and Lance may say, "Come on over George, and I will get you that yellow jersey you want on more time." That will be interesting to see.

I thought that Astana was going to be no more, and what I mean by that is the sponsor is bankrupt and going away. Where will Vinokourov be heading then?

Now we will see how good AC is without Bruyneel and the cast, but he could go to a decent team and with his climbing/TT skills he will still be in the hunt.

Indo
07-29-2009, 09:14 AM
I agree with you on Levi, and I don't. The reason I agree with you is that, yes, they will help each other win their assigned races, and Lance will pass the torch in a year or two on to Levi (age depending, not sure how old Levi is).
The reason I don't is because maybe Levi feels he is good enough to be the leader of his own team, and someone like Columbia with Martin, Kirchen, possibly big George, and others would be able to support him in the mountains. Either place he goes he is going to be one hell of a team rider or leader.

As for big George, I don't know. Is he under contract with Columbia? Also, he seemed adament about it being his last tour, and Lance may say, "Come on over George, and I will get you that yellow jersey you want on more time." That will be interesting to see.

I thought that Astana was going to be no more, and what I mean by that is the sponsor is bankrupt and going away. Where will Vinokourov be heading then?

Now we will see how good AC is without Bruyneel and the cast, but he could go to a decent team and with his climbing/TT skills he will still be in the hunt.

I saw an interview with George the other day---he was keeping very hushhush about his contract. He seemed to imply that he wasn't going to ride any more grand tours, but that he wasn't ready to completely retire, either.

Astana---I, too, thought they were getting out of the sponsoring business, but then I saw something (maybe it was during one of the stages), where Phil Liggett (spelling?) said that Vino was coming back to ride for Astana and that's why Bruyneel wasn't going to be Director Sportif for them anymore. He doesn't want to be associated in any way with anyone who has been involved in a doping scandal. Of course all of this came out before the anouncement of the Radioshack team, and that's just a no-brainer regarding what will happen with Bruyneel...

I think AC will ALWAYS be a threat to win, no matter what team he is on, but I don't think he will be quite so dominant when he has to do a lot of the work on his own...

A. Schleck WILL also win theTdF in the not-too-distant future, IMO

Hines0wnz
07-29-2009, 07:10 PM
In any event, it makes for a better storyline than doping for next year's TdF. :thumbsup:

SCSTILLER
07-30-2009, 08:04 AM
I saw an interview with George the other day---he was keeping very hushhush about his contract. He seemed to imply that he wasn't going to ride any more grand tours, but that he wasn't ready to completely retire, either.

Astana---I, too, thought they were getting out of the sponsoring business, but then I saw something (maybe it was during one of the stages), where Phil Liggett (spelling?) said that Vino was coming back to ride for Astana and that's why Bruyneel wasn't going to be Director Sportif for them anymore. He doesn't want to be associated in any way with anyone who has been involved in a doping scandal. Of course all of this came out before the anouncement of the Radioshack team, and that's just a no-brainer regarding what will happen with Bruyneel...

I think AC will ALWAYS be a threat to win, no matter what team he is on, but I don't think he will be quite so dominant when he has to do a lot of the work on his own...

A. Schleck WILL also win theTdF in the not-too-distant future, IMO


I just remembered one reason that I don't think George will jump over to Radio Shack with Bruyneel and Lance. I think it was Discovery's last year and they were having the American championships in Greenville, SC (Georges hometown) and Levi was told by Bruyneel to go win it, and in the interview George was pretty pissed off at Bruyneel. Next year he left Discovery/Astana and joined HighRoad. I wonder if that will still come into play if he still decides to ride competetively.

I heard that comment from Liggett about Astana and Vino also, but it is going to be pretty hard to keep a team together when you cannot pay them.

I couldn't agree with you more about Andy Schleck! One heck of a rider and he will only get stronger in the mountains, and pretty decent at TT also.

Heard any news on the team selections dates or anything? I remember someone typing Sept/Oct or Oct/Nov. If you hear drop me a line and let me know so I can be on the lookout for it.

Indo
07-31-2009, 02:32 PM
here's the website

http://teamradioshack.com/getready/


there's nothing on it yet, but you can sign up to get updates thru email