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Biosphere

Stage 16 TdF: Wed, Jul 18th: Pau - Bagnères-de-Luchon 197km

Mastery of All Aspects of Cycling

Jean-François Pescheux wrote:
Pau, a stronghold? Pau, a strategic place? On today's menu, a 197 km classic succession of great Pyrenean cols: the Aubisque, Tourmalet, Col d'Aspin and Peyresourde. As Christian Prudhomme said, a mere four days from the finish, this stage will turn the thumbscrews on the peloton! Moreover, such a course is exactly my idea of a true mountain stage: not with a summit finish, which tends to lock up the race a bit, but an up-and-down course which calls for a mastery of all aspects of cycling. Two years ago, Andy Schleck vacillated somewhat on the descents...


Interesting notion that a true mountain stage does not feature an MTF Confused







http://www.steephill.tv/2012/tour-de-france/previews-results/stage-16/

Any attacks only need to keep it up for 2.5km off the final descent. Hopefully somebody gives it a go instead of waiting for tomorrow.
Bartali

The trouble is that the descent is one of the easist in the Pyrenees.  It will be very difficult to break away or stay away.  Equally an attack on the Aspin might be too far out. It is a technical descent though ... in an ideal world that's where Evans and Nibali might try something.
HuwB

Bartali wrote:
The trouble is that the descent is one of the easist in the Pyrenees.  It will be very difficult to break away or stay away.  Equally an attack on the Aspin might be too far out. It is a technical descent though ... in an ideal world that's where Evans and Nibali might try something.


Didn't Pantani finish 2nd the last time we had this finish?
Attacked in the mists on the Peyresourde and bombed into
Bagneres?


Anyhow, another factor may be the weather.
90F forecast in Pau 86F at the finish.
Bartali

You are almost certainly right, but its a very fast and reasonably straight descent so it surprises me that time can be gained on the descent alone.  The last part of the climb is attack friendly I suppose ... but not super steep.

The weather wasn't too nice over the Tourmalet on Saturday ...

Fontfroide

Results?  Stories?  Gotta say, cool outfit, very up to date (retro of course), matches the bike.  Don't you wear arm warmers, or a wind proof when it is cool in the high mountains.

I assume this is you on your bike that begins with P, whose name I forget.  Sorry, Age.
Boogerd_Fan

Looks like you could use a SKY train Very Happy
SlowRower

Boogerd_Fan wrote:
Looks like you could use a SKY train Very Happy


We should just be thankful that Bart is no longer riding on the "Vomit Comet" that was pacing him up the Galibier in last year's Marmotte. Smile
smarauder68

I believe waiting until the final climb to launch an attack is fruitless for stage 16.  Question is, will anybody from the top 5 try an attack on the Tourmalet? Who has to balls to try?

Does Nibali have the explosiveness to get a REAL gap of over a minute on Sky?

I reckon Pinot and Rolland will go early to battle for the KOM Jersey...Those 2 will probably be in the break early and be allowed 5 minutes or so.  I doubt VdB or would be allowed to go.

I realize this tour is effectively over, barring a Wiggins crash....it would be nice to have some action though.
Biosphere

I find it hard to imagine Rolland being given 5 mins. They wouldn't give him 2 on Sunday.
HuwB

Biosphere wrote:
I find it hard to imagine Rolland being given 5 mins. They wouldn't give him 2 on Sunday.


All he has to do is tack onto the right break. Wink
smarauder68

1. GBRWIGGINS Bradley 101 SKY PROCYCLING 68h 33' 21''  
2. GBRFROOME Christopher 105 SKY PROCYCLING 68h 35' 26'' + 02' 05''
3. ITANIBALI Vincenzo 51 LIQUIGAS-CANNONDALE 68h 35' 44'' + 02' 23''
4. AUSEVANS Cadel 1 BMC RACING TEAM 68h 36' 40'' + 03' 19''
5. BELVAN DEN BROECK Jurgen 111 LOTTO-BELISOL TEAM 68h 38' 09'' + 04' 48''
6. ESPZUBELDIA Haimar 19 RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 68h 39' 36'' + 06' 15''
7. USAVAN GARDEREN Tejay 9 BMC RACING TEAM 68h 40' 18'' + 06' 57''
8. SLOBRAJKOVIC Janez 181 ASTANA PRO TEAM 68h 40' 51'' + 07' 30''
9. FRAROLLAND Pierre 29 TEAM EUROPCAR 68h 41' 52'' + 08' 31''
10. FRAPINOT Thibaut 146 FDJ-BIGMAT 68h 42' 12'' + 08' 51''
11. GERKLÖDEN Andréas 15 RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 68h 42' 50'' + 09' 29''
12. LUXSCHLECK Frank 11 RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 68h 43' 06'' + 09' 45''
13. IRLROCHE Nicolas 79 AG2R LA MONDIALE 68h 44' 10'' + 10' 49''
14. FRACOPPEL Jérôme 91 SAUR-SOJASUN 68h 44' 48'' + 11' 27''
15. USAHORNER Christopher 14 RADIOSHACK-NISSAN 68h 46' 02'' + 12' 41''

Who will be allowed to go in the break on the first climb? How serious will Sky work to defend VdB's 5th place? Answer, they won't...Sky may just sit back and let Rolland and Pinot go away thereby forcing Lotto, BMC or Liquigas to bring them back.


I think there's a great chance for Pinot and Rolland to take advantage tomorrow.
HuwB

Harmon, already talking about the heat possibly affecting Sky.
Too hot to sit out in Bagneres, yesterday.
"Infernally hot".
Today is 2-3C hotter.......
kathy

Has Harmon said anything about Schleck?
gerry12ie

Only if he can get away without mentioning the elephant in the room, Kathy
kathy

Spanish ES just mentioned 'El polemico Schleck' in passing!
kathy

Horner crash!
HuwB

kathy wrote:
Horner crash!


LOL: It's a conspiracy against RSNT.
Somebody put old Horner into the bushes.
Very odd.

I'm going to have to watch the rest a bit delayed, so
won't be able to keep up with forum banter. Sad
kathy

I'm going out in half an hour, so won't see the rest of the stage live Twisted Evil
SAP

NBCSports led with the Schleck story this morning.  Showed an interview with RSNT spokesman and wondered how this would affect their team standing in the Tour.  Spokesman (I didn't catch his name and didn't recognize him) said they believed in Frank and would stand behind him.
kathy

Right i'm off.  Enjoy the stage!
Biosphere

38 riders in the break. That's practically a peloton Shocked

Vaughter's FPing Dan Martin for the stage. Voeckler is maybe going for the red peas now?
Fontfroide

I will be here, off and on, all day.  Curious to see how the escape does.

Voeckler eh?
Severo

ITV finally going live. First thing they do is discuss the Schleck situation and a little interview with Voigt.
Severo

Gusev abandoned.
Fontfroide

Rolling along.  
The TV pictures invite me to ride in the Pyrenees every year.  Never get the deep urge to ride the Alps.
smarauder68

Just waking up, did Rolland or Pinot make the break?
HuwB

smarauder68 wrote:
Just waking up, did Rolland or Pinot make the break?


No.

Dan Martin destroys the break and Voeckler in the process.
Fontfroide

Glad Kessiakoff got dropped.
Severo

You don't like him?
Fontfroide

No, I rather like him from interviews.  He seems a serious rider.  I guess, for some reason I can't fathom, I am tired of the maillot spotty being won by a non well known climber of some sort.  I feel the contest is kind of without interest, without struggle, won by nearly anyone.  

Anyway, I don't care deeply and I hope that someone fights for it.  If Kessiakoff wins, fair enough.
HuwB

I see Europcar have begun the process of riding everybody into the ground again......
Geraint

HuwB wrote:


No.

Dan Martin destroys the break and Voeckler in the process.


good
smarauder68

Just rode in to my office...any attacks from GC men on the Tormalet?
Geraint

smarauder68 wrote:
Just rode in to my office...any attacks from GC men on the Tormalet?


Surprised were you expecting one? this stage will be a big bore. "saving their energy for tomorrow"  study
Fontfroide

smarauder68 wrote:
Just rode in to my office...any attacks from GC men on the Tormalet?


Funny you ask.  Jalabert is saying nothing is happening, which is sort of true.  Thierry Adam (the constant commentator in the team) says Jalabert should not really say that.

Jalabert, in the GC sense, is correct.
HuwB

Ends up with Dan Martin destroying himself. Embarassed
George Hincapie has hit the tarmac and looks pretty banged up.
cyclingtv

where's a good strong headwind when you need one.. Laughing
smarauder68

Nibali, VDB and Evans have all but conceded things then. The most they can pull back now is 45 secs or so on the final climb...they needed 1:30 or more today.
Geraint

HuwB wrote:
and Voeckler in the process.


he has the type of face i want to kick
Geraint

congrats to ASO on a fine stage design
cyclingtv

interesting chase group..
hope george stays upright..

keep an eye out for LA minions..
smarauder68

It would be nice to see Hincapie get a final stage victory but that crash will give him the mental excuse to stop pushing.
HuwB

Evans waves bye bye to the podium......
Geraint

Bye Bitch   Smile
Biosphere

smarauder68 wrote:
It would be nice to see Hincapie get a final stage victory but that crash will give him the mental excuse to stop pushing.


Who needs Phil and Paul to tel us what's going on in riders's heads when we've got you Wink

So Evans went to too many civic receptions/sponsorship jollies/etc. in the off season?
smarauder68

Biosphere wrote:
smarauder68 wrote:
It would be nice to see Hincapie get a final stage victory but that crash will give him the mental excuse to stop pushing.


Who needs Phil and Paul to tel us what's going on in riders's heads when we've got you Wink

So Evans went to too many civic receptions/sponsorship jollies/etc. in the off season?


Is TeeJay runining his white chances by sticking around Evans?
Geraint

Great year to get injured Andy Im sure you prefer coming second every time
Fontfroide

Geraint wrote:
HuwB wrote:
and Voeckler in the process.


he has the type of face i want to kick


Rolling Eyes
cadence

smarauder68 wrote:
Biosphere wrote:
smarauder68 wrote:
It would be nice to see Hincapie get a final stage victory but that crash will give him the mental excuse to stop pushing.


Who needs Phil and Paul to tel us what's going on in riders's heads when we've got you Wink

So Evans went to too many civic receptions/sponsorship jollies/etc. in the off season?


Is TeeJay runining his white chances by sticking around Evans?


No, TeeJay is still in the Wiggins group....
MAILLOT JAUNE

OMG! As much as I like Voeckler he should be shot for the length of his socks!!!!!!!!!!! He has got a bit a an annoying face, but I'll forgive him that since he's a fighter and must have been training in the mountains since he struggled when he was the MJ in the mountains.

After all the stick that Armstrong used to get for the length of his socks I can't believe anyone has not mentioned this.

USADA would have a better chance of prosecuting Armstrong for sock length than anything else.... get the tape measure out!
Geraint

Was it the length or the color that was annoying
cyclingtv

combination of both.. look at wiggins leggings
smarauder68

Sorensen looks like the stage winner at this point. I think Voeckler is gonna crack a little.
Geraint

Thats just a bit of simulation for the housewives of France
cyclingtv

thankyou nibs..
Boogerd_Fan

GO VINCENZO GO!!
Geraint

coverage is not showing the tour leader at all, they are showing everyone but him. you would think the fking midget is leading the tour
berck

Geraint wrote:
Was it the length or the color that was annoying


I think it was a bit of both, but more so for the color because Armstrong's were black.
Fontfroide

Geraint wrote:
coverage is not showing the tour leader at all, they are showing everyone but him. you would think the fking midget is leading the tour


You watching the same coverage as me?  We see a guy in yellow quite often.
HuwB

Nibali is the only guy able to breath life into this race.
Geraint

Fontfroide wrote:
Geraint wrote:
coverage is not showing the tour leader at all, they are showing everyone but him. you would think the fking midget is leading the tour


You watching the same coverage as me?  We see a guy in yellow quite often.


all i hear is harmon drooling over the green goblin
Fontfroide

Like the shot of Froome, Nibali and Wiggo on their own.  Maybe tomorrow too.
Boogerd_Fan

satisfied with crushing Evans today, but he didn't put a dent in SKY.
berck

Did Evans get lost? Wink
mazda

Van Garderen getting close to Evans in GC.
Geraint

berck wrote:
Did Evans get lost? Wink


Its not his fault when all those Dysentery Channel riders gang up on him every day Crying or Very sad
Fontfroide

Geraint wrote:
Fontfroide wrote:
Geraint wrote:
coverage is not showing the tour leader at all, they are showing everyone but him. you would think the fking midget is leading the tour


You watching the same coverage as me?  We see a guy in yellow quite often.


all i hear is harmon drooling over the green goblin


Its TV Geraint, you're supposed WATCH it.  I don't get you at all, seems you are not watching, and your sentences are terribly short and casual.  Green Goblin?  You make that up?  Creative.
Fontfroide

Voeckler is some rider.  Not like the others.
berck

mazda wrote:
Van Garderen getting close to Evans in GC.


Just heard Evan is 3:50 down to Van Garderen currently. It that holds, Van Garderen will pass Evans in the standings.
cyclingtv

bravo TV..
berck

cyclingtv wrote:
bravo TV..


+1
Boogerd_Fan

only 4pts in the KOM jersey.. TV is gonna need to do it all over again tomorrow (or at least follow Kessiakoff)
Fontfroide

He gives a good interview, Thomas.  Says more than his legs were good.
berck

Well its official...

The best young rider, Tejay van Garderen, is ranked sixth overall and is now ahead of his team leader in the general classification.
Fontfroide

Guess he will be on the list of possibles for the next ten years, unless something happens.

At last, the Etats Uniens will have their hero again.
Fontfroide

Thomas likes his rest day.  Victories each time after the rest days.
MAILLOT JAUNE

Geraint wrote:
Was it the length or the color that was annoying
You're lucky I'm MJ and not MJM as I'm sure you would've got a diatribe! I think the words "length" and "tape measure" are a bit of a giveaway
HuwB

berck wrote:
Well its official...

The best young rider, Tejay van Garderen, is ranked sixth overall and is now ahead of his team leader in the general classification.


11 seconds ahead, I believe.
VDB needs to take a few seconds off young Tejay, tomorrow, or his third place may be under threat in the ITT.
Lead is currently about 2 minutes 10, or there abouts.
mazda

HuwB wrote:
berck wrote:
Well its official...

The best young rider, Tejay van Garderen, is ranked sixth overall and is now ahead of his team leader in the general classification.


11 seconds ahead, I believe.
VDB needs to take a few seconds off young Tejay, tomorrow, or his third place may be under threat in the ITT.
Lead is currently about 2 minutes 10, or there abouts.


Third ?
So which of the top 3 is not going to finish ?
Is samauraders dream of a problem for Wiggins going to play out ?
HuwB

mazda wrote:
HuwB wrote:
berck wrote:
Well its official...

The best young rider, Tejay van Garderen, is ranked sixth overall and is now ahead of his team leader in the general classification.


11 seconds ahead, I believe.
VDB needs to take a few seconds off young Tejay, tomorrow, or his third place may be under threat in the ITT.
Lead is currently about 2 minutes 10, or there abouts.


Third ?
So which of the top 3 is not going to finish ?
Is samauraders dream of a problem for Wiggins going to play out ?


Ay, in all the excitement, I meant 4th. Rolling Eyes  Embarassed

General Classification after Stage 16
GBR 1 WIGGINS, Bradley (SKY PROCYCLING) 74:15:32
GBR 2 FROOME, Christopher (SKY PROCYCLING) + 2:05
ITA 3 NIBALI, Vincenzo (LIQUIGAS-CANNONDALE) + 2:23
BEL 4 VAN DEN BROECK, Jurgen (LOTTO BELISOL) + 5:46
ESP 5 ZUBELDIA AGIRRE, Haimar (RADIOSHACK-NISSAN) + 7:13 Shocked
USA 6 VAN GARDEREN, Tejay (BMC RACING) + 7:55
AUS 7 EVANS, Cadel (BMC RACING) + 8:06
SLO 8 BRAJKOVIC, Janez (ASTANA) + 9:09
FRA 9 ROLLAND, Pierre (EUROPCAR) + 10:10
FRA 10 PINOT, Thibaut (FDJ-BIG MAT) + 11:43
IRL 11 ROCHE, Nicolas (AG2R LA MONDIALE) + 11:47
GER 12 KLÖDEN, Andreas (RADIOSHACK-NISSAN) + 13:14
USA 13 HORNER, Christopher (RADIOSHACK-NISSAN) + 13:39
DEN 14 SÖRENSEN, Chris Anker (SAXO BANK-TINKOFF BANK) + 14:43
RUS 15 MENCHOV, Denis (KATUSHA) + 21:06
Geraint

12th kloden  Very Happy
mazda

So will Evans be having a few whiskies tonight to aid his recovery for an all out blast tomorrow ?
smarauder68

Now that this tour is effectively over (apart from the KOM Jersey), time to start looking ahead to the Tour of Utah...Smile It'll be interesting to see the start list in a week or so.

The US Pro Cycling Challenge is also happening around the same time over in Colorado, but I think the Tour of Utah is going to snatch more of the bigger names.
Bartali

Fontfroide wrote:
Thomas likes his rest day.  Victories each time after the rest days.


Umm ...   Shocked

Chapeau for Nibs for at least having a go.

Sky have ridden this Tour very well.  Boring and dull ... but quite ruthless.
Slapshot 3

Bartali wrote:
You are almost certainly right, but its a very fast and reasonably straight descent so it surprises me that time can be gained on the descent alone.  The last part of the climb is attack friendly I suppose ... but not super steep.

The weather wasn't too nice over the Tourmalet on Saturday ...



Which Sportive was this Bart??
gerry12ie

Is it time for the TDF to think about time bonuses on the few rare MTFs that they now have.  The peloton are certainly climbing slower now and the testers have gained an enormous advantage with the developments in TT equipment and preparation (er, wind tunnels that is...).  Wiggins would have won this comfortably with 1 x 40k or 2 x 20k or whatever...

For me, this tour was over before it begun and we saw the template for it drawn up at PN and DL.  I certainly don't begrudge Wiggins as I quite like him but it's been a trifle dull n'est-ce pas?  I know time bonuses wouldn't have made any difference to this Tour but it might relieve the boredom if the USPS way is going to be the way in future.
Bartali

Agreed Gerry ... but the TdF has favoured testers for a long long time.

SS - Etape Act 2.  Todays stage but I did it on Saturday.
Slapshot 3

Bartali wrote:
Agreed Gerry ... but the TdF has favoured testers for a long long time.

SS - Etape Act 2.  Todays stage but I did it on Saturday.


Brilliant, how was your time??

The testers were always going to win this one unless one of the real climbers did something magical with the few mountains they had and from what we know of the likely contenders that wasn't going to happen. I think only Contador could have done something but with Wiggins and Froome in this form he might have struggled as well. We all said it weeks ago, Wigggo stays on board, he wins though I thought Cuddles would have had a better shout.
Biosphere

From CN:

Quote:
Stage 16 was tough-going but for a measure of just how tough, look no further than Sky's Mark Cavendish.

"Today's stage can be put into perspective by the fact that by the end I didn't care that I was just puking over myself. Hills+Heat=Suffering," he said following the stage on Twitter.

In response, David Millar reported from the Garmin-Sharp bus:

"@MarkCavendish We could've been puking on each other and we wouldn't have cared. DZ puked all the way home in the bus. It's just wrong."


http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/tour-shorts-why-nibali-has-no-regrets
Boogerd_Fan

I just hope ASO are true to their word in cooking up something special for the 100th edition of the race, 100 years after the mountains were introduced. I smell the chance of a seriously mountainous route next year, and the idea of doing it so far ahead of time, that they made this years "soft" to compensate.
Bartali

I do hope so ... but I fear it's wishful thinking!

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