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Le Tour 2011

Discussion in 'Cycling' started by Moses, Jul 2, 2011.

  1. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    Evans never looks to be doing it easy. I thought I heard him say something along the lines of: "I never give anything away because I always look knackered." The Schlecks may have been attacking, but it got them nowhere. They're a bit precious if you ask me. After the stage they were whining that they were the only ones attacking.

    Basso is a dark horse. He won the Giro last year. He's good. Contador has too much time to make up. I'd love to see both Schlecks dumped out of the top three. They're starting to become a bit righteous.
  2. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    I have been surprised with Voeckler retaining the yellow jersey through the Pyrenees, and wondered what his TT pedigree is like and whether he is a podium contender. I have also wondered what kind of margin for error Cadel has prior to the TT. This led me to guestimate what the TT times will be.

    Firstly, I admit to being a Tour de France junky and do not follow the sport of cycling for the other 49 weeks of the year, hence my knowledge of the riders and the research for this piece does not extend beyond www.letour.com.

    Based on the average result of the previous 3 years Tour de France TT and the times of the current top 10 after stage 15, if the TT was tomorrow after it they would be placed something like;
    1. Schleck F
    2. Schleck A
    3. Contador
    4. Evans
    5. Sanchez S
    6. Voeckler
    7. Basso
    8. Cunego
    9. De Weert

    Obviously, this is purely hypothetical and doesn’t allow for the upcoming HC climbs in the Alps. It also includes the horrid TT Cadel had last year (hopefully a one-off) after his crash when he was 10 minutes off the pace. But to me it does show that Contador is still in the race.
  3. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    I'm surprised your results came out like that. The two strongest time trialists of the top 4 above are Contador and Evans. I'm not sure what order they would be in either. The Schlecks can't time trial particularly well although they have improved. The TdF results are deceptive because if you have something to ride for (eg to hold yellow etc) you're going to ride better. As such, I wouldn't discount Voeckler pulling out an amazing time trial if he's still in yellow. The maillot jaune has magical properties.
  4. Scotty David Codey (61)

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    I bet the Schlecks wouldn't be whining about being the only ones to attack if one of their attacks had actually worked.

    Evans looks better than he has in any previous tour. Looks to have picked up a little bit of pace up the mountains to help him stave off attacks or attack himself.
    AngrySeahorse likes this.
  5. The_Brown_Hornet Michael Lynagh (62)

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    Yeah I agree Scotty. I've seen them attack a few times in the last few days and they couldn't put a gap in them. Don't get bitter, boys, get better. I think the TT is going to be *very* interesting and I agree that Evans looks better placed than any tour in recent years.
  6. Bruwheresmycar Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    If they had a TT tomorrow, i reckon Evans would kill it and be in yellow with a lead of a few minutes. (Assuming Contador continues to ride like he has been).

    All Evans has to do is hold on in the last 2 mountain stages, and the way things are going he stands a good chance of doing that.
    Joe Mac likes this.
  7. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    Fingers crossed yes, but anything can happen on the day. My gut feel says both Cadel and Contador have about 2 minutes on the Schlecks on a normal 52 km TT but this year's TT is only 42 kms which favours the slower TT riders. The 2009 Tour had a TT of only 39 kms and both Schlecks finished higher placed than Cadel on the day. Go Cadel !

    Saturday is going to be huge. Wallabies kickoff at 12 midday CET and Le Tour top 5 riders will start the TT from about 3.30pm CET.
    The_Brown_Hornet likes this.
  8. AngrySeahorse Peter Sullivan (51)

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    Cadel pulled some time back tonight. The Schlecks didnt have a good time of it out there. Contador went better.
  9. Joe Mac Arch Winning (36)

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  10. Jets Mark Loane (55)

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    Cadel is looking better and I think Frank Schleck is being held up by Andy as they seem to believe that they should finish first and second. I am hoping that Cadel can make up a little more time before the TT as I think he will do well in that.
    AngrySeahorse likes this.
  11. light Peter Fenwicke (45)

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    Woah, didn't manage to watch last nights stage but did some reading about it. Cadel couldn't be better placed right now before tonights monstrous climb that will more than likely determine the tour de france winner.

    My thoughts on who to watch.
    -Alberto Contador doesn't have the firepower to make up that much time in the very few stages he has left, if he really felt like he could win it we would have seen challenges alot earlier than the penultimate stage. Will make time up in TT on everyone other than Evans. I've written this guy off, but beware the sleeping champion.
    -Sammy Sanchez seems a good choice for this stage as it's a climb and he's done all the attacking so far, if given a lead he will jump at the opportunity. This is probably the last stage where he can gain time and so look for early attacks from the EE team.
    -Andy Schleck is the main worry for Evans I feel, he's still very close and has the ability to leave everyone in his wake, BUT he's very well marked. Feel as if there's some kind of monkey on the back for him as he tries to carry his brother and watch nemesis Contador. He won't lose time tonight, but I don't expect him to gain time on Evans unless he goes for an individual assault.
    -Cadel Evans, perfectly placed right now. He's gaining time on Voeckler but I feel he won't want the yellow jersey just yet. He's looking more towards the TT for that honour and tonight will be simply a task of staying with the big boys, something he looks able to do. In excellent form, if he can stay within a minute of Andy, he will fancy himself in the TT and the race is basically over. Will be watching Contador like a hawk but I don't think that's his main rival right now with the time gap and this being one of the last mountain stages.
    - Thomas Voeckler, our beloved yellow jersey holder. As we all expected he's losing mountains of time during these stages and will probably struggle to stay with the pace tonight. He's not really feared by any of the GC riders but he's showing some ticker, evidence suggests that tonight he will probably lose the little time he has left and we will see a new leader tomorrow.
    - Frank Schleck is one that I'm not sure where to predict. He doesn't seem to be where he was and by all reports and evidence Andy is sacrificing himself to keep Frank within reaching distance. This is so they get the 1,2 finish. Doesn't look to be in form and with a series of big attacks coming tonight I think we could see him dropped off the back. Will need to attack himself a few times to allow Andy the opportunity but I can't see Frank making time tonight and his race looks to be pretty much over, with the exception of getting his brother the win. Other GC riders won't want him up there so look for him to be shaken off early.
    - Ivan Basso, by far my favourite rider in this years tour, the guy simply doesn't seem to go away. He's got far too much time to make up tonight and isn't the climbing type but I expect him to stay within reaching distance. Seems to have a big heart and the workrate to compliment it, should be thereabouts in Paris. Won't be attacking too much tonight, expect to see him up leading towards the end but he's not a threat overall. Could use this to his advantage and gain a lead, but impossible to predict.

    I'm not liking tonights stage if I'm Cadel Evans, everyone will need to be watched closely and alot of energy will be exerted. If Andy or Alberto break away I don't think he should panic, he has enough time and specialties in the bag to catch them later in the tour (so long as Andy doesn't get over a minute and Contador doesn't get over about 20sec). He needs to hope the pack stays together until the final climb and see how his legs feel, the other contenders will be throwing everything at him so it's important he doesn't get dropped off the pack of 7 or so riders that will be left by the final climb. The BMC boys need to stick with him for as long as possible and he can't be looking for a stage win.

    Tonight's stage prediction: 1. Contador + 20sec A.Schleck + 30sec Evans, Sanchez, Basso + 2min Voeckler, F.Schleck
    Yellow Jersey: 1. A.Schleck, + 16sec 2. Evans, 3. ??
  12. Baldric Jim Clark (26)

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    Light - great comments. Basically two mountains stages and a TT left. If you go too hard tonight you could knacker yourself for the next two stages. Cadel would be fancying his chances now, but would be wary of Contador in the TT. If one of the Schleks has a good go tonight you woukd wonder if there is enough racing left to make up the time. I am also enjoying Voeckler managing to stay in yellow when by reputation he should be blown away. A part of me hope he can do the unexpected and stay up front. Whatever, it looks like a two night of little sleep.
    Nusadan likes this.
  13. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    Exciting race day today with 3 HC climbs. First 30 kms at 60 km/hr !! Some of those guys will be in a world of hurt when it starts getting steep.

    Go Cadel!
  14. Bruwheresmycar Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    If Cadel can take yellow tonight, it might just give him the boost he needs to hang in there on alpe d'huez tomorrow.
  15. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    Contador and Sanchez having a good chat on the approach to the last climb. I have no sound with my coverage so can't hear what the french commentators are saying but I'd expect they would be claiming collusion and conspiracy theories.
  16. barbarian Nick Farr-Jones (63)

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    I am not sure they will be able to pick up Andy, no team has enough manpower to lead the chase. BMC are trying but they only have one rider and as a result the peleton are falling behind.
  17. antipodean Banned

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    Euskaltel does. I don't think Andy will have the legs to compete on the final Col with the tempo pace once they catch him.
  18. antipodean Banned

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    If they catch him at this rate!
  19. The_Brown_Hornet Michael Lynagh (62)

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    Massive call by A. Schleck to go when he did. If he leads the race after tonight, it will be one of the ballsier moves I've seen in this race.
  20. tigerland12 John Thornett (49)

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    Ballsy move by Schleck, hopefully Cadel pulls time back, but I'm more worried about Voeckler whose
    managed to stay with Evans

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