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Biosphere

Stage 17 TdF: Thu, Jul 19th: Bagnères - Peyragudes 144km

Loads of Points Up for Grabs

Jean-François Pescheux wrote:
Short (143.5 km) but tough! We designed a Pyrenean counterpart to the Alpine stage between Albertville and La Toussuire. But now that we are a mere three days from the finish, if the general classification has not been decided yet this will be the last chance for climbers to build a buffer. There will also be loads of points up for grabs for the mountains classification... The course offers no respite. The first climb is the Col de Menté, famous since 1971, which will be followed by the Col des Ares and the Port de Balès. This will be the first time that the finish is decided on the Plateau de Peyragudes, a ski resort in the Hautes-Pyrénées.






ASO haven't put any detailed profiles from the pointy end of the stage. If somebody is able to post a link I'll edit it in and then tidy up thread.

http://www.steephill.tv/2012/tour-de-france/previews-results/stage-17/
smarauder68

Sadly, the nastiest climb is the Mende.  The others look fairly tame. Probably see another huge break and solo win. That could change if someone big actually attacks early.
Biosphere

Tame compared to the monsters in Salt Lake city maybe, but by Tour standards they're not too bad Wink

The earliest possible GC action would be on Bales. From what I read it's an uneven ascent and a tricky descent.
HuwB

Bales is where Andy had his famous "mechanical".
Tougher, the further you go up.
It is a pity that Mente sits alone.
Good for break sorting, but not much else.
Expect the group in bits at some point, only to later regroup.

Similar to the La Toussuire stage, but with fewer kms of climbing.
Fontfroide

No idea how exactly these people at Archives des cotes d'Europe calculate their numbers.  I expect one can be quite critical and fuss a lot about it.  Looks like Bales is harder.

Bales 129
Mente 118
http://www.zanibike.net/motore.as...amp;lingua=fra&commenti=False

Is there any consensus out there about which source for "col rating" is "best"?
Severo

How is the descent from the Col de Peyresourde? The climb to the Col de Peyresourde itself is around 7.8%. The only thing I can see is if the descent there is bad, gives Nibali a chance.

Whole stage is missing a decent mountain in the middle.
HuwB

No break getting away until the Mente.
Big question for me is: What do BMC do if Pinot gets up the road?
kathy

Looks chilly on the Mente today!  Big group away again,including my man for today!
Severo

Zubeldia (5th) already dropped. Of course he will get back on this long drag between Mente and Bales but it doesn't look good for him today.

Kessiakof and Voeckler going for spots again. Well at least something is interesting!
kathy

Horrid looking descent in the cloud!
KarenP

Such dramatic pictures! No crashes, PLEASE.
kathy

Nibs having a bit of a go!
Nolte

I think i saw Nibs with Peraud and Voeckleur trying to make a gap.


edit -
Zubeldia has been dropped by the maillot jaune group

nibs confirmed as being in the lead group with 26 seconds lead.
Severo

Which suits people who are good at descending... and might makes things interesting Nibali-wise.
kathy

Ithink Valverde finally got his message across to nibs Laughing
Nolte

nibs has given up.
just too much flat on it before the climbs and too many sky riders.
but nibs is a good trier and you gets spell triumph with try, if you misspell try but my autocheck won't let me misspell try.
kathy

Valverde was telling Nibs they wouldn't let the escape go if he was with them
HuwB

Have to say, as the race goes on, I'm liking Voeckler less and less.
He is the break's lead weight, but that won't stop him probably winning two on the bounce.
Hope Leaky keep them close.

I wonder what (besides the obvious) that hand shake was all about?............
kathy

It was just 'Thanks for agreeing to go back to the peloton', surely!
Bartali

The Bales is by far the worse climb and it's followed by a technical descent then straight on the the Peyresourde part way up.  An attack on the Bales would be the text book approach.
mazda

There isn't any history between those two from the Vuelta ?
kathy

Voeckler sticking to Kessiakoff like glue!
HuwB

Well, the last HC was another non-event.
berck

I wonder if Valverde can last?
Fontfroide

I hope so even if I didn't pick him.  He has not been terribly visible, but a Vuelta with him in good shape, Cobo, Schleck (if he is still riding a bike without his brother), Contador and Froome might be good viewing.
cyclingtv

gc is over.. will nibali salvage at least a stage win..
Fontfroide

Wiggo really spins those pedals.
kathy

he's doing OK at present
berck

He's extending his lead now, although, I think he's loosing time to the MJ group.
cyclingtv

wondering how many euros that handshake involved.. if if if AV holds on.. Wink
berck

Basso needs to pick up the pace more if he wants to help Nibs put some time on the Sky group
cyclingtv

seems CE's 'tummy' troubles aren't gone..

berk.. agree that basso's pace isn't enough to crack sky..
berck

Is Evans about to get dropped?
MAILLOT JAUNE

Oh yes, Evans dropped again - there was mention that he had an illness but no further details on it.

Also, CN reporting that the Schlecks have signed for Astana next year - well, at least one of them will be on the team!
Severo

Nibs dropped. Only Froome and Wiggins.
Boogerd_Fan

Ufff... Nibs going... and Wiggo riding well - looks like this climb isn't steep enough to put him in trouble.
berck

Looks like Wiggo and Froome have taken over. Next stop Valverde... Sad
cyclingtv

froome drops everybody without knowing it..
Severo

Giro tactics from Leaky today Sad
kathy

Froome really getting fed up Laughing
berck

Froome doesn't want to take the MJ from Wiggo. Valverde may still get the stage win
Fontfroide

He can just pat his wallet and smile.
berck

Froome is looking behind more than he's looking ahead.
berck

Go Valverde!
kathy

That was exciting!
mazda

A gift by Sky or Wiggins being a bit mean to Froome ?
berck

mazda wrote:
A gift by Sky or Wiggins being a bit mean to Froome ?


Forget the former. Mean, or just showing him who is the boss?
cyclingtv

froome had that hands down but wasn't allowed..
HuwB

JV reckons Froome should have gone after Valverde.
I agree.
So what if Wiggins lost 30 seconds?
Wouldn't much matter.

kathy wrote:
That was exciting!


I hope you don't mean the whole stage!
berck

HuwB wrote:
JV reckons Froome should have gone after Valverde.
I agree.
So what if Wiggins lost 30 seconds?
Wouldn't much matter.


Yep, I agree too. Wiggo could still have maintained a healthy lead, unless he is worried about being outperformed by Froome in the TT.

HuwB wrote:

kathy wrote:
That was exciting!


I hope you don't mean the whole stage!


This is starting to remind me of Basketball. Doesn't matter what has happened in the game, its the final two minutes that count.
Where's Coppi when you need him? Wink
smarauder68

Froome is by far the strongest all-around rider in the world at present. Wiggins should hang is head in shame. Shameful decision by Sky.

Let the best man win!
Nolte

today, we saw that Froome is the strongest riders in the mountains in this Tour De France.


kathy wrote:
Voeckler sticking to Kessiakoff like glue!


kessiakoff's only chance of taking the mountains jersey today would have been if they organised a restraining order on voeckleur mid race.
i think their would be sufficient video evidence to back up such a restraining order.
SlowRower

smarauder68 wrote:
Froome is by far the strongest all-around rider in the world at present. Wiggins should hang is head in shame. Shameful decision by Sky.


There's some mileage in all three comments, but Wiggo winning the Tour will be worth oodles more to Sky (and cycling in Britain) than it being won by some bloke with a funny accent who no-one's really heard of.

Froome took the contract last Autumn; now he has to pay the price.

Mr Shifter is right - follow the money!
Fontfroide

It is, finally, a business.  NO surprises.
Fontfroide

And how about those young frogs.
Severo

One thing I don't get is Wiggins gets doping questions yet his record is way less suspicious than Froome's.
Fontfroide

Froome speaks medium OK French.  Never knew that.  Climbs better, but Bradley's French is way better.
cyclingtv

severo.. don't they say bird's of a feather flock together?
mazda

Apparently Froome has had the bilharzia parasite removed.
Not quite up there with having a testicle removed, but must have a significant effect, not least on the continual effort of the body's immune system.
Fontfroide

We should get a medical view, but I don't think you EVER get it removed.  It can hit anytime.
cyclingtv

as the rtve.es commentors said froome made wiggins look 'pathetico'
Fontfroide

smarauder68 wrote:
Froome is by far the strongest all-around rider in the world at present. Wiggins should hang is head in shame. Shameful decision by Sky.

Let the best man win!


The world we have built says "May the contract be fulfilled"  or "Follow the money".  The best man only wins in certain stories.

We shall see if Froome beats Contador in Spain.
gerry12ie

smarauder68 wrote:
Froome is by far the strongest all-around rider in the world at present. Wiggins should hang is head in shame. Shameful decision by Sky.

Let the best man win!


You love him long time?
berck

Severo wrote:
One thing I don't get is Wiggins gets doping questions yet his record is way less suspicious than Froome's.


I agree. At least Wiggo has been showing improvement over the past three or four years. Froome has come out of no-where. Well, there was the Vuelta last year, but what prior to that?
HuwB

cyclingtv wrote:
as the rtve.es commentors said froome made wiggins look 'pathetico'


But, presumably less pathetico than the rest of the peloton? Wink

The irony here being what they would have said, had Froome dropped Wiggins and caught Valverde.
My guess is bastardo. Razz
gerry12ie

HuwB wrote:
cyclingtv wrote:
as the rtve.es commentors said froome made wiggins look 'pathetico'


But, presumably less pathetico than the rest of the peloton? Wink

The irony here being what they would have said, had Froome dropped Wiggins and caught Valverde.
My guess is bastardo. Razz


But they would have said that about Valverde anyway Wink
Bartali

Just watched the highlights - kudos to Sky, but that was a bit shameful as scott says.

Froome may have signed a contract, but he did everything he could to make Wiggo look a fake winner.  It will be interesting to see how history remembers this Tour.  Great british hero or hollow victory bought an paid for?
Boogerd_Fan

I still reckon SKY sorted a deal with ASO to give them a route that truly favoured Wiggo too.
HuwB

Fingers in the spokes. Tried to remove newspaper from front wheel but hit a pot hole.
Surgery in Toulouse. May not start, tomorrow, apparently:
berck

Boogerd_Fan wrote:
I still reckon SKY sorted a deal with ASO to give them a route that truly favoured Wiggo too.


ASO take a bribe? For more money? No way. Wink
Slapshot 3

The best man this year WILL win the tour because he's the guy who takes Yellow into Paris. Froome took the contract and the paypacket and good on him for sticking by it BUT he's done very little else this year because of his illness and has spent the subsequent months getting ready for this sole aim of shepherding Brad through the mountains.

Thing is, put him against a healthy Berto or even Andy and see where his climbing is then and in a GT against them. How good would he be if he were on a different team? Would he have the same level and the same support the team have given him.....too many imponderables.

Wiggo will win the tour that's suited him and the Sky team and their preparation to a tee. I honestly don't see how anyone could have beaten him this year other than possibly Froome had he been on a different team
smarauder68

Slapshot 3 wrote:
The best man this year WILL win the tour because he's the guy who takes Yellow into Paris. Froome took the contract and the paypacket and good on him for sticking by it BUT he's done very little else this year because of his illness and has spent the subsequent months getting ready for this sole aim of shepherding Brad through the mountains.

Thing is, put him against a healthy Berto or even Andy and see where his climbing is then and in a GT against them. How good would he be if he were on a different team? Would he have the same level and the same support the team have given him.....too many imponderables.

Wiggo will win the tour that's suited him and the Sky team and their preparation to a tee. I honestly don't see how anyone could have beaten him this year other than possibly Froome had he been on a different team


In at least 2 stages if not 3, Froome demonstrated he could have easily pedaled away from Wiggins and create more than 2 minutes in gains.  The gains Wiggins made in the time trials would not add up to those Froome would have made if his shackles were cut free. Simple as that.  I will remember this tour in much the same way I remember the 85 tour. The best man was shackled by his own team so a more favored rider could STEAL the glory.
Severo

Slapshot 3 wrote:
I honestly don't see how anyone could have beaten him this year other than possibly Froome had he been on a different team


I would have liked to have seen him up against Contador (and a 2010 Basso would have been good - but I think Basso won't be at that level again). I'm not sure anyone else can trial well enough.
Bartali

Slapshot 3 wrote:
The best man this year WILL win the tour because he's the guy who takes Yellow into Paris.

Really?  The best man is usually the winner ... but clearly not where a stronger rider doesn't take his chances due to team orders.

Kudos to Froome for not pulling a Roche though I think he may have deliberately 'embarrassed' Wiggins today - perhaps to make a point.  Its not good for the sport when its as obvious as it was today - makes the sport look fixed.  They've stopped then doing it in F1 I think.

Certainly impressive riding by Sky - both physically and tactically.  As for how well the stack up against Bertie ... well depends whether he's dertie bertie or comes back clean(er)
Biosphere

SS

The constraint of putting Froome a different team and then seeing how he does is a bit of an odd argument. Why can't he be allowed compete at Sky? If Wiggins had come under pressure in the mountains, it would have been interesting to see if lesson had been learnt from the Vuelta.
kathy

To explain myself a bit further.....

Yes, I did find all of today's stage interesting.

I get the impression that some of you guys have an obsession only with who will attack for GC ie will Nibs or Evans attack Sky, will the Schlecks attack Berto etc    You should know by now, perhaps because of the dreaded radios, that that almost never happens.

But I'm interested in the nuances of the race eg the fight for the polka dot, or young rider, or will people like Rolland or Pinot attack to try and improve their GC postion.  These contests are usually much more exciting, and were given full rein today.

As far as GC goes, yes, I agree with Soott, Froome is by far the strongest rider in this (not very strong) race, and if he hadn't lost time due a puncture early on, it could have been rather embarrassing for Wiggo and Sky.  Though personally, I don't see why it's preferrable that a British rider born in Belgium is preferrable to a British rider born in Kenya!  But Froome has accpeted the shilling and has conducted himself (fairly) honourable in this race, with one or two little displays of petulance.  Are either/both doping?  I don't know, and I don't much care any more  - I think trying to eradicate doping from sport is a bit like trying to sort out the world economic crisis!

Little rant over!  Roll on the Vuelta. Berto V Schleck, Valverde and Anton, and maybe we'll see what Froome is made of - if he's not too tired!
smarauder68

kathy wrote:
To explain myself a bit further.....

Yes, I did find all of today's stage interesting.

I get the impression that some of you guys have an obsession only with who will attack for GC ie will Nibs or Evans attack Sky, will the Schlecks attack Berto etc    You should know by now, perhaps because of the dreaded radios, that that almost never happens.

But I'm interested in the nuances of the race eg the fight for the polka dot, or young rider, or will people like Rolland or Pinot attack to try and improve their GC postion.  These contests are usually much more exciting, and were given full rein today.

As far as GC goes, yes, I agree with Soott, Froome is by far the strongest rider in this (not very strong) race, and if he hadn't lost time due a puncture early on, it could have been rather embarrassing for Wiggo and Sky.  Though personally, I don't see why it's preferrable that a British rider born in Belgium is preferrable to a British rider born in Kenya!  But Froome has accpeted the shilling and has conducted himself (fairly) honourable in this race, with one or two little displays of petulance.  Are either/both doping?  I don't know, and I don't much care any more  - I think trying to eradicate doping from sport is a bit like trying to sort out the world economic crisis!

Little rant over!  Roll on the Vuelta. Berto V Schleck, Valverde and Anton, and maybe we'll see what Froome is made of - if he's not too tired!


Kathy, I think its clear that Sky see Wiggins are the more preferable option because A)he speaks english like an englishman and B)they probably put a few hundred thousand quid on him.
SlowRower

I find myself in an odd situation. As Wiggo's biggest (if not only) fan on this Forum, I should be delighted at "my man" looking like he's got the Yellow Jersey sewn up.

It may not have been the most exciting Tour, but following the text commentary, fearly waiting to read "Wiggins dropped", has been exquisite torture. Proof, if more was needed, that one should not invest much emotion in the exploits of others, but it's been a nervy last couple of weeks, despite my best efforts!

But it just doesn't feel right. I can understand the commercial reasons for Sky protecting Wiggo, and don't have any particular sympathy for Froome, as he took the "King's Shilling" willingly enough, but Rule 67 should still apply: The purpose of competing is to win. End of.

Still compared to the largely British campaign of ANC Halfords in 1987, this is Nirvana, and one should not be too picky. Smile
Geraint

SlowRower wrote:
I find myself in an odd situation. As Wiggo's biggest (if not only) fan on this Forum, I should be delighted at "my man" looking like he's got the Yellow Jersey sewn up.



I have Bradley in my avatar
HuwB

kathy wrote:
To explain myself a bit further.....

Yes, I did find all of today's stage interesting.

I get the impression that some of you guys have an obsession only with who will attack for GC ie will Nibs or Evans attack Sky, will the Schlecks attack Berto etc    You should know by now, perhaps because of the dreaded radios, that that almost never happens.

But I'm interested in the nuances of the race eg the fight for the polka dot, or young rider, or will people like Rolland or Pinot attack to try and improve their GC postion.  These contests are usually much more exciting, and were given full rein today.



HuwB wrote:
No break getting away until the Mente.
Big question for me is: What do BMC do if Pinot gets up the road?


I think we all share the same nuances.
Fact is, nothing at all happened in the white jersey battle.
Neither Rolland and Pinot managed anything I would describe as an attack.
The PD battle was the active ingredient and full marks to Kessiakoff for trying but there was only ever going to be one winner.

Anyhow, the general consensus seems to be more in line with this:
http://inrng.com/2012/07/romanticism-prudhomme-tour/
Fontfroide

The thing that the race worked out like it did.  Trivial and obvious, I know.

What I mean is that what team you are on makes a difference.  To say that Froome looked good, maybe better than Wiggins, and if he was leading another team, with the pressure and a different set of riders supporting him, with Wiggo (and the rest) biting at his heels, that he would have won, is really so speculative it is a bit like saying Sanchez would have won the king of the mountains if he had not been injured.  Or that Cav would have beat Sagan if Sky had not wanted yellow.  Or that if Andy had been in the race he would have beat them all.  Or IF IF … All of the alternative scenarios are perfectly plausible.  

Myself, I don't think Froome was that much better in the hills, that is, able to beat everybody on his own.  Froome rode the entire race under no pressure whatsoever, at all, not a bit.  And we will never know what Bradley could have done under pressure this year, since he never was under pressure.  If you all don't think Bradley can dig deep and is incapable of changing speeds on a climb, I am not sure you have been watching the same races all year that I have.  I certainly don't know what Bradley could have done if Froome had done what he tried to do and attacked.  Froome tried twice that I can see, to prove he was the best.  I am pretty sure he was told off after the first time and he kept doing it.  So he is a disloyal teammate.  Bradley might have been able to catch him and pass him, but it is certainly easier to just get him to stop.  the idea is to win the Tour, not have your teammate dump on you.  Bradley knew who was the boss, Froome apparently didn't get the idea.

Its like saying that if there were or were not time bonuses (or another mountain top finish, or shorter time trials, or …) a rider may or may not have won a race.  Well, there were no time bonuses and Bradley was the leader and he made no mistakes.  So Froome has to accept it.  And Froome had to just ride up behind everyone else on the Sky team until the end and then ride with Bradley a few k.  No pressure, not a worry in the world.  We have no idea how he can handle being the leader, being attacked, doing interviews, etc.

Still, it will be fun to debate all this during the winter, and watch Froome look for a new job or not, win the Vuelta or not in a few weeks, get busted or not, and to watch how Froome works for Cav in a week or so.  His job in the Olympics is to ride like the wind in front of Cav until Cav has caught up with the break after Box Hill.  Let's see if he does it.

Which does not mean I am not in favour of rebels and disobedients.  Just that Froome has done nothing all year, and when he has a job to do for the team that kept him, supported him and paid him, with his own foreknowledge of what his job was, then he appears to be a little bit unreliable.  And on Sky reliability and obedience is the deal.  Look at Cav, he got Bernie and that's it.  World Champion, fastest sprinter, Green Jersey holder, and he accepted the deal.

Anyway, what exactly is the big problem for Froome?  Second in the Vuelta and second in the Tour is not that bad, and gives him a chance to be the leader in the Vuelta and make loads of money leaving the team to try to win the tour next year.  If I were Bradley, I would get rid of him.
SlowRower

If I was Froome, I'd sit tight. The selection of Jason Kenny for the sprint in the OGs strongly suggests that Brailsford selects on form, not past reputation, so if Froome is clearly stronger than Wiggo in the run-up to the Tour next year, he would be in with a good shout of being the nominated leader.

Or maybe Sir Bradley - as he will surely be by then - will exercise his aristocratic rights and claim leadership come what may.
gerry12ie

Well said FF.  I havent seen any evidence in well over a year that Froome or anyone else can leave Wiggins struggling in the mountains - it's as simple as that.
Bartali

Did you not watch yesterday Gerry?  It was embarrassing how Froome made it so obvious that he was the 'top' rider.  I'd be furious if I was Wiggins - tho I fully understand why Froome did it (or at least I think I do).

FF - No one is asking what Froome could have done on another team ... the question is what could he have done on this team and from what we've seen its not unreasonable to assume that he would be in yellow heading into the last ITT if he hadn't had to shepherd Wiggins thro the mountains.

Loyal?  Reliable?  Well Froome might be no René Vietto; he's not a backstabber like Roche either.  My guess is that Wiggins himself - in is heart of hearts - will feel a little hollow when all the champagne has been quaffed, interviews in the can and knighthood received.
SlowRower

Bart - I'd largely agree with your assessment, particularly with respect to Wiggo's inner feelings.

The unknown factor, though, is what would have happened to Froome if he had "dished it out" to Wiggo at La Toussuire. He might have had the capabilty to put 30 or 40 seconds into Wiggo, but would he have paid for it in subsequent days? Froome may well have been inadvertently saved from his own impetuosity! Or would Wiggo simply have "dieseled" his losses to manageable proportions?

It would have been good to find out though, particularly as the threat from Nibali was less than might have been feared. No disrespect to Nibs here - he has at least given it a go, and won't die wondering.

It's hard to see in hindsight any actions by Froome in the final part of any stage that would have compromised a Sky top spot on the podium, though the fear of Nibs doing something dramatic in the Pyrenees was well justified at the time. Reining in Froome in the Alps made sense; it certainly looked a bit iffy yesterday.
Bartali

Agreed.  Obviously there is money involved and Wiggins is currently more marketable etc; but in pure sporting terms it would not have been unreasonable to let froome of the leach yesterday.  He would very likely have one the stage at least.  I suspect Sky management are very sensitive to the situation - particularly after the Vuelta last year.  They probably hoped Froome would play the game, but he clearly has his own agenda.
Slapshot 3

Bart.....best/strongest in these terms is the same for me because overall the best/strongest rider stands on the top step in Paris.

Bio....The only way Froome could have feasibly challenged this year would have been on another team because they Sky option clearly wasn't there but as has been noted different year, different scenario, Sky/GB Cycling obviously do what they think is right for the team rather than an individual, we can see that in the Olympic selections, who knows what will happen next year.

I caught scratches of an interview last night on Forces Radio/5 Live where Simon Brotherton spoke to King Kelly/Harmon, they were discussing the whole scenario, wish I could have heard it all.

I don't think Wiggo needs to worry about how he might feel, everything has gone exactly as they planned despite Froome's little attempts to show what he's made of. I have little sympathy for Froome same as I have very little for any rider in a similar position, you take the shilling you do the job, end of story.

I may not be picking up all the nuances that have gone on through the tour, I've seen clips of about 5 stages and what I can glean on here and on CN....all a bit sparse, I'm basically going on what I have
gerry12ie

Spotter's badge for Bartali Wink I have only just seen yesterday's final and certainly Froome seemed to make a needless show of strength.  Can he not just ride tempo for his leader without the grand gestures and looking around?  Poor show I think.  

I still think that if circumstances were different that Froome wouldnt have taken too much out of Wiggins had he attacked in either the Alps or Pyrenees - Wiggo would have Basso'd back most of the gains that Froome could have made.  Anyway, it's all moot as he was there to provide support and do his job - not to make his leader look uncomfortable and under pressure.
KarenP

gerry12ie wrote:
 Poor show I think.


I agree. I thought that was ridiculous.
Bartali

Slapshot 3 wrote:
Bart.....best/strongest in these terms is the same for me because overall the best/strongest rider stands on the top step in Paris.


Sorry ... but that is bonkers!  The rider who finishes in the shortest time stands on the top step and that certainly doesn't mean they are the strongest or best when riding to team orders.  To stretch the point, if rider A gets of and waits for 10 minutes so rider B wins ... is rider B still the strongest?  BTW - I'm not saying Wiggins isn't the best ... but Froomes petulance has brought to the fore something we alway knew.
ullrichfan

Wiggins has intimated a couple of times that he will support Froome next year in the TDF for helping him this year.
SlowRower

ullrichfan wrote:
Wiggins has intimated a couple of times that he will support Froome next year in the TDF for helping him this year.


He's intimated support, but not explicitly for next year from what I've read. Could be interesting...
berck

ullrichfan wrote:
Wiggins has intimated a couple of times that he will support Froome next year in the TDF for helping him this year.


Would that be along the same lines as Hinualt's support for LeMond? Wink
SlowRower

berck wrote:
ullrichfan wrote:
Wiggins has intimated a couple of times that he will support Froome next year in the TDF for helping him this year.


Would that be along the same lines as Hinualt's support for LeMond? Wink


He'll do the job properly, but not before he's defended the jersey next year with everything he and Sky can throw at it!
Slapshot 3

I must be bonkers anyway, why would anyone want to come here during the northern hemisphere summer....

I can see your point, don't necessarily agree, but I've not seen enough or read enough to start on their relative merits to argue on the basis of this tour.

I do think the quid pro quo will be there next year if Froome's form dictates, only issue I have is other than the Vuelta last year and the Tour what else have we seen of him. We've probably all asked "the questions" of Wiggo some more than others but Froome begs the same questions.
Bartali

Well I totally agree with that ... and I started asking that question during the Vuelta!!

I can only assume its that little bit of Sky magic that's turned Rogers into a young man again, turned EBH into a descent climber and a 4000m rider into a GT winner.  I'm afraid I am full of cynicism.

That said, Wiggins has ridden like a gentleman and lovely to see him do his bit for his sprinter today.  Chapeau
Biosphere

Like Bart, I don't see the logic of asking what Froome could have done on another team when we're talking about the last 3 weeks. He wasn't allowed to compete on the team he was on. Wiggins can take time out of him in the ITTs. He's not allowed respond when he clearly could. All the benefits that are listed for Froome being on Sky apply to Wiggins also (more so in my opinion).

Gerry, when you say no evidence that Wiggins would struggle, I presume you mean crack big time? Cos from the Vuelta and the Tour I think there's clear evidence that Froome climbs better. Better enough? I don't know.

Whilst there is truth in it, I don't fully agree with the assessment that Sky back the form rider. Froome was stronger at the Vuelta, yet they had him on the front in the leaders jersey in the final week doing donkey work for Wiggins, and didn't release him soon enough when Wiggins was faltering, with the result that it may have cost them victory. I don't think many other teams would have put Froome in that position. Astana 2009? If Contador had obeyed team orders and not attacked Armstrong, I'm pretty sure that there wouldn't have been the same "ride for the team" defence that is being given above.

The comparisons with Cavendish being a good boy and making sacrifices are also missing the bigger picture I think. Sky were even riding for him last year when he was still at HTC, so they could get the full 9 men at the WC and deliver that for him. Next Saturday they're going to be going all out trying to deliver him a gold medal. He's being supported 100% in pursuit of the biggest prizes that he has the ability to compete for. Froome will be part of that, yet if there is a medal for GB, it's unlikely to be for Froome despite the fact that he'll have probably have worked his bollocks off towards it.

It's a different debate, but if we're going to say it's a  team sport, then there maybe needs to be team prizes?
gerry12ie

From DL last year through the Vuelta, PN, DL again, Romandie and this year's tour, i.e. the races he has competed in to win, Wiggins has only been put under pressure by Cobo and Froome - and that was on the kind of mountains we might expect him to struggle on.  Other than that his climbing has been gutsy and exemplary.  I think the Froome situation takes the gloss off what is really as easy a win as Armstrong or Indurain ever bagged.  

Whether you like Roche or agree with what he did at the Giro (I don't and I didn't) he at least fully believed that he was the best man and acted on that belief in the most committed way.  Froome's posturing yesterday was frankly ridiculous and childish and his interview with L'equipe was ill-advised at a critical time.  He would do well to STFU and hope the team show him the same commitment and unity that he should consider his job to do.  He can clearly be very strong when jumping off the Rodgers/Porte Express but may find this climbing malarky a different proposition elsewhere...
Bartali

I think you summed up my thoughts well there.  We always knew it was a team sport and in these days of super teams it will always be the case that a dom d'luxe will have a really good day.  I think Roche ws despicable in the 87 Giro, but at least we all believed that the strongest man won.  Froome's antics just leave a nasty taste im my mouth ... and while I'm not yet a fan of Wiggins, I think he deserved more respect.
gerry12ie

Speak of the devil!

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/r...i-would-have-done-what-froome-did

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