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Le Tour

Discussion in 'Cycling' started by Jethro Tah, Jul 5, 2010.

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The Schleck chain incident: should Contador have attacked?

Contador 2 vote(s) 14.3%
CĂșntador 12 vote(s) 85.7%
  1. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    Gotta love Le Tour. For me, it's (almost but not quite) up there with a Wallabies game as a sporting event that I am passionate about. I follow the other grand tours a bit but there's nothing like the spectacle of Le Tour. Ever since my first born was a new born some 7 years ago when night wakenings just happened to coincide with the SBS coverage of the Tour, I have become addicted. The attraction of the countryside from the coverage was also one of the drivers in me being over here now, and I now get to follow it live in proper hours. I don't ride as a sporting past time, but wish I did and may give it a go one day. I just find the concept of the peloton so intriguing, and the fitness and determination of the riders so admirable.

    Does anybody else follow the Tour?

    My tips for the podium:

    1. Contador with Vinokourov back on the team
    2. Andy Schleck
    3. Lance (probably sentimental here but he now has Kloden in his team as well as ex Discovery Channel riders Lepheimer & Popovych)

    Of the aussies, I fear it is a race too far for Cadel with a lesser team now but Mick Rogers could be a dark horse for the podium.
  2. Moses Simon Poidevin (60)

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    I'm keen on following le tour this year, they're doing a recap show each morning on Fox that I plan on watching, and there's a fair bit of video footage (probably IP restricted) over here: http://www.foxsports.com.au/cycling
  3. rugbywhisperer Banned

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    I never miss Le Tour. Even the missus gets involved.
    The scenery is absolutly magnificent and you have to admire these guys averaging the speeds they do - gees I can't get to that down hill let alone average for 200 kays over hill over dale.
    One day - off in the never never I hope to attend in person.
  4. barbarian Michael Lynagh (62)

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    Yeah I am a big fan too, although to be honest I can only watch the flat stages for so long, especially considering the timeslot. I cant see anyone getting close to Contador again this year, especially with one less time trial and more mountain stages than last year. It may be Lance, especially considering his effort in the prologue and the team he has behind him. Also I wouldnt rule out Sastre for a podium, he is still pretty handy when the pressure is on.
  5. cyclopath Phil Waugh (73)

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    Yep, it's a bad 3 weeks for me - never enough sleep!!
    I love it - the physical effort is amazing, but the team tactics and interplay are also fascinating.
    Contador will be hard to beat, I don't think Lance will do it, but you'd be crazy to bet against him. Cadel just doesn't have a good enough team but will probably go strongly enough.
    The Green jersey battle compels me as much as anything - Cavendish apparently really wants it this year. If he stays fit, hard to see anyone who can go with him.
  6. the gambler Dave Cowper (27)

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    Being an insomniac I have loved the Tour for many a year. Can remember Phil Anderson winning a stage when I was about 8yrs old but was totally hooked when I was in Paris in 99 and saw McEwan win the final stage. Have been an avid follower of Phil Liggett ever since and as I have become more involved in the wine industry it has added to my interest. Sorry to promote again but for those in Sydney that love the tour there are a few Tour de France wine tastings in the coming weeks that add to the excitement of the whole race. A dutch and belgian beer, 9 wines and a cognac all taken from the route of this years tour. Throw in a couple of cheeses and you have a great night. If anyone is interested please message me.
  7. Moses Simon Poidevin (60)

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    There was a decent crash today, the young Italian wearing the retro kiwi cricket kit was apparently to blame and two of the favourites, Cadel and another picked up injuries.
    According to the SBS commentator, popovich? went up to the front of the peleton and played policeman, instructing the other riders no to make a break until the injured riders were back up. If true, that's pretty cool.

    @gambler, cheese wine and cognac sound awesome.. though I think I should probably stay home with my 37wk pregnant wife for the immediate future.
  8. Gagger Nick Farr-Jones (63)

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    Yeah, apparently there are quite a few unwritten peleton rules - like sharing the lead etc - which most people obey (apart from Lance in his heyday)
  9. Ash Michael Lynagh (62)

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    Screw Le Tour - anyone watch the Giro this year? Un-fucking-believable. Field was not quite the quality of the Tour, but the racing was a lot more exciting.

    Generally the Tour is a bore in the first week or two, but the cobbles, the oil slick on the Stockeu (btw, they manage those roads just fine in LBL, thank you) and the last one or two stages have actually been good racing off and on and made things interesting. Lack of a TTT another plus.

    BTW, I like the sound of Ligget and Sherwen, but they are so biased towards Anglosphere riders and Armstrong it's not funny. I guess I'm a bit of an Armstrong hater due to his personality, the stuff he's done earlier (like chasing down Simeoni), the bullshit denials ("most tested athlete ever" lies) and his behaviour to the stronger rider Contador last year. Sad to see Lance go out this way, but I don't mind too much really and won't miss him. Leipheimer will now be the RetirementShack's leader, but he is one of the most boring and uninspiring riders in the peloton.

    Regarding Cuddles, well done to him. Leaders jersey and third in Vuelta (hurt by a damn unfortunate puncture too), winning the World Championship, winning the semi-classic FW, leaders jersey in Giro plus points plus a fucking epic stage win and 5th overall despite getting sick, and now the yellow jersey in the Tour - awesome year for him. And he seems to have overcome his problems with the press and is a bit more attacking and less boring a rider than he once was now he's in the rainbow stripes. I hope Cadel can hold on for a podium in the Tour, but think he'll fall off in the third week. Evans had traditionally struggled in the third week of GTs, and I think fatigue from the Giro will hit him too. Hope he enjoys it while he has yellow (before he tries to give it away in a stage or three's time).

    Moses - the retro cricket kit (team Footon-Survetto or whatever) is the ugliest thing on a bike. They look naked half the time.

    Cyclo - I think Thor might hold onto Green again this year. Thor will target points in the hillier stages where Cav will fall off and that will probably be the difference again. But huge ups to Farrar - fractured his wrist and rode one handed for a stage or two before coming back and competing in the sprints again. Can't believe he pulled off a second place in one of them.
  10. Baldric Jim Clark (26)

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    Ash, I cant see Cadel holding on to yellow all the way to the end. It is a big ask if you consider what is coming up. I dont think he planned to be where is is so soon in the race. He has yellow more because of other riders stuffing up.
    It will make for good viewing though.
  11. Moses Simon Poidevin (60)

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    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    That is all.
  12. Ash Michael Lynagh (62)

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    I don't think that BMC will hold the yellow jersey too long. Their team is very very strong on the flats and hills (with Ballan, Burghardt, Kroon, Hincapie off the magic juice, Bookwalter) but very very weak in the high mountains, with only Morabito able to stick around (Satambrogio might have been able to too, if he had some form). If you are trying to hold yellow in the high mountains without some real mountain goats your team will get decimated pretty quickly and your leader often isolated before the last climb. BMC was pretty weak in the mountains to begin with, and the loss of Frank in the prologue just made it worse.

    In the next 3 - 4 stages there's two hilly stages where the GC contenders will all stick together and that the sprinters will not care about (well, maybe apart from Thor and Freire). In one of these I think BMC will try to let a breakaway with a few nobodies in it get a huge lead and give away the yellow until the harder Pyranees stages. My guess is they try this either on Wednesday's or Friday's stages.

    Stages 14, 15 and 17 will be the decisive stages, and I think Evans just may get into trouble up the Tourmalet sadly, or get shelled on the last HC climb on stage 15 if Contador, Schleck etc go at it or riders like Basso set a high tempo and try to ride off the front.

    If Evans and BMC didn't think that he could come in the podium or even top 5 I think they'd now keep the yellow jersey as long as possible and parade around in it, but I think they still have hopes of getting Evans onto the podium and thus will want to get rid of it ASAP to save their team for the Pyranees.

    If Astana or Saxo or Leakygas or another strong team are feeling particularly cruel then they might try to scuttle BMC's attempts to give away the yellow jersey.
  13. the gambler Dave Cowper (27)

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    Gee it's been a cracking start to the tour, and as Ash said, it has been a much more exciting start than normal.

    Spent most of today preparing notes and maps for the Tour Tastings (wine on a hangover with a cold isnt as fun as it should be) with the two stages I had missed on in the background.

    Betfair has Cadel at about $17 to win the Tour. Contador is $1.65, Schleck $3.75 then it's out to about $75 for Basso and Menchov. Personally cant see Andy holding off Contador but looking forward to watching some attacks and counter attacks.
  14. liquor box Ken Catchpole (46)

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    I liked what Cadel said after the last stage, he spoke about being concerned with Contadors time trial abilities.

    I think even if he is a minute or two behind schleck going into the last time trial it wont be too bad as long as he is around 30 seconds ahead of Contador.

    I am really looking forward to what Armstrong can actually do, he wont be a marked man so will be able to break away for wins most days now. I hope he puts on a show in his last tour.
  15. Cutter Nicholas Shehadie (39)

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    I love Le Tour.

    Surprised that Contador couldn't follow Schleck yesterday. That Schleck is rubbish at time trials means he has to attack Contador and Evans in the mountains which should make for a fascinating battle. I don't think Cadel is out of it. He's had a great season and actually feels as though he deserves to be there now.

    I watched (and rode parts of) the last 8 stages last year. It was one of the greatest things I've ever done. If you can, make the effort.

    Viva le Tour.
  16. Jethro Tah Bob Loudon (25)

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    IMO, no surprise that Schleck jumped and only Sanchez followed. With brother Frank out of the race now and bugger all help from the rest of his team on the slopes, Andy will do it tough in the Pyrenees so wanted to get a stage win asap. Similarly, I think Cadel will struggle towards the end but he is a fighter and seems a lot more relaxed this year so you never know. Rogers will also struggle as he pretty much has to go it alone in the mountains. I still think Contador will win (with good support from Navarro & Vino) but now with Lance out of contention and F.Schlek out of the race, I think the other podium places will come from Menchov, Basso, Sastre and even Wiggins, who all have competitive climbers to lend support.

    BTW, for all those outside Oz the race coverage on Iraq Goals is off SBS so you can still hear Ligget & Sherwen, as well as the cooking show before the race coverage starts.
  17. Baldric Jim Clark (26)

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    Cadel gone. He rode with a fractured elbow. Pretty bloody gutsy that. The duelling between Schlek and Contador was amazing. I dont think that Schlek has enough to stay in yellow to Paris. The time trial will be massive for him.
    Great day of cycling.
  18. Moses Simon Poidevin (60)

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    That duelling between Shlek and Contador was awesome, I never appreciated the tactics that went into a race like this!
    Then they finally made the gentlemans agreement to work together, top stuff. Then they caught up to Shlek's teammate who absolutely roasted himself to give his teammate that final boost. Loved it.
  19. Baldric Jim Clark (26)

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    Moses, those sort of duells have been missing from tours of late. It is awesome to watch.
  20. rustycruiser Billy Sheehan (19)

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    Jens Voigt. I can't remember how many times he has done the hard work for the leaders of CSC/Saxo Bank of the years, there have been so many. A real domestique, he just busts his ass for his team leader.

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