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kathy

Tour of Flanders, 6th April

The Tour of Flanders takes place this Sunday, 6th April.

I have posted an Fp thread here

http://justcycling.myfastforum.org/sutra218340.php#218340
HuwB

I'll pop these in here.
Hope they are not too big.
Race Map



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Boogerd_Fan

is it just my imagination, or has the Taaienberg moved later into the race than last year (iirc it was 100+ km from the finish)
gerry12ie

Boogerd_Fan wrote:
is it just my imagination, or has the Taaienberg moved later into the race than last year (iirc it was 100+ km from the finish)


Aye, and the Koppenberg has moved much closer to the finish too.  A rather splendid gentleman by the name of Museeuw discusses the changes here...


Link
gerry12ie

A little run through the favourites?  OK then...

Sagan - Maybe his time has come, and he looks to be at a peak for this.  There are a couple of nagging doubts that the extra monument distances take the sting out of his attacks or sprint, and with the last 40k featuring the Koppenberg/Steenbekdries/Taaienberg/Kruisberg/Oude Kwaremont/Paterburg his strength will be sorely tested.  Prediction - 2nd.

Cancellara - He has been there, seen it, and done it.  No wins yet in 2014 and the only indication of form was a power show at E3 that was ultimately fruitless.  Devolder has a spring in his step this season and could prove a valuable ally.  If they can manage to stay on Fab's wheel they might frustrate him like in 2011 but the route changes should suit him the most.  Prediction - 1st.

Boonen - Went well early on this season but between personal problems and injury he may not even be the main OPQS chance.  Nonetheless, if OPQS don't end up with too many chiefs on the road they will certainly be around in the final.  This might be the final Flanders showdown between Spartacus and Tornado Tom and if he is in the selection I wouldn't bet against him... Prediction - ask me after the Taaienberg

Vanmarcke - Has a real chance, although Boom's absence won't help him.  If he can stick with the right moves he should be thereabouts.  Cancellara had to dig real deep to beat him Roubaix last year and he looks a future winner of this, but maybe not this year.  Prediction - 3rd.

There are plenty of other possibilities - BMC's only real classics contender is the gutsy GVA but he usually falls short in the big ones, as do EBH and Thomas for Sky (Thomas has an uncanny knack of finding the deck in spring).  Lotto have contrived to miss every break of consequence this year so I would rule out Roelandts, and I cant see Pippo or Chavanel making the frame either.  I do like the pairing of Kristoff and Paolini though, and the bearded one is my dark horse...
HuwB

Sporza will be live in 20 minutes, for the start and some of the early kms.
On for 75 minutes, off from 75 minutes, then on for the rest of the race.
gerry12ie

Phinney in the first break of the day on his Flanders debut.  Van Summeren and Durbridge out and hurt, Vanmarcke looks shook up after a fall...
HuwB

Roelandts the first of the big names to go out, it seems.
Funny sort of crash.
HuwB

Van Summeren's crash.


The lady is in a serious condition, apparently.
Biosphere

Hope the spectator will be OK. Had the tape running for a while but just started watching live now. Trek seem to have been doing a lot of work. Boonen has a probe on the Molenberg?
Biosphere

Devolder and Rast get themselves isolated by a midfield crash and OPQS up the pace in response.
HuwB

Yes, Bio OPQS revert to type.
gerry12ie

Wiggins might end up last man standing...
HuwB

Carnage, crashes, punctures galore, mad spectators in the way.
Meanwhile, OPQS just ride on.............
gerry12ie

Fabian addressed the wheel suckers before the start...


Bartali

That van summer an crash looks horrific!!
HuwB

Bartali wrote:
That van summer an crash looks horrific!!


Camera phone video of the incident and yes, it's horrific.
What on earth were they doing there?
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152353235233685
gerry12ie

Oh no!  On an island is bad enough - but with two kids???  I really hope she is ok but how idiotic can people be?
gerry12ie

Quinziato, Trentin and Eisel slip away from the main pack...
HuwB

More massed carnage
Biosphere

That island crash is horrible.

I was worried the Katusha rider hit the pole, but he seemed to be moving at least.

The 3 that have slipped away are closing on the leaders quickly.
gerry12ie

The business end approacheth...
Biosphere

Devolder on the ground again along with nearly half of Saxo. Looked in a lotof pain.

Edit: Cancellara climbs the Paterberg alongside Boonen and checks him out.
gerry12ie

Devolder would have better luck in the National yesterday
gerry12ie

Fuck me, Devolder is back up and working his way through riders!
HuwB

Devolder shown again. Big, big hit on the guy down.
Amazing
Biosphere

I think Devolder is not in a position to contribute anything though. Spartacus is surrounded by OPQS gladiators now Wink
gerry12ie

All present and correct for the selection
Fontfroide

Lot of messing around on the last hills, but then we have "everyone", which means that with so many teammates, it is Boonen's to lose.  I even see my Belkin jersey in the final group.  Missed the crash, for which I am happy.
Fontfroide

Didn't expect Taylor Phinney would still be there.   Who is the AG2R guy?

Oh, its van Avermat.
Fontfroide

Sebastian Minard?
gerry12ie

Fontfroide wrote:
Sebastian Minard?


That's him.  OPQS in a strong position now - working Sagan over...
Fontfroide

Allez Sepp.
gerry12ie

Is Sagan on the ropes?
HuwB

Fascinating stuff, this
gerry12ie

I reckon one more push will see Sagan off
gerry12ie

Paolini!
Fontfroide

Sagan keeps calling for his car, for what exactly?  My guys have no idea.

Oh dear, big group again.  All to play for except Greg V seems serious.
Biosphere

Sagan is on the ropes or saving himself / waiting for support?
Fontfroide

55 Seconds is a lot, why are the Omega guys not riding.  Surely they can figure the big fellow who has won nothing is not their main hope.

Good race actually.
Fontfroide

Those little hills make a huge difference, even for Boonen.
Fontfroide

Don't lose the wheel  Sepp.
gerry12ie

Here's the trick
gerry12ie

I think we might have an epic on our hands today Very Happy  Very Happy
Biosphere

I've seen this show before Wink
Fontfroide

No doubt you can remember the end.  So who?  I suppose you think it is fabian.
Fontfroide

Fabain and Sepp are 12 seconds behind at the bottom, and at the top/
Biosphere

No idea. It's just that it's a rerun of Paris Roubaix.
Fontfroide

So not the same movie, but a sequel.
Biosphere

Did Vanmarke gently block Cancellara so he couldn't drop him? I am surprised at thelevel of grip on farm lanes.
gerry12ie

This is great stuff
Fontfroide

Ten k, plenty of time for funny business.  Really good race.  Kristoff pushing a huge gear.
gerry12ie

Fontfroide

Yes, good luck on that bet.  Hard to imagine not winning a small or large pile.
Fontfroide

Nay national unity left, three belgians, one Swiss.
HuwB

OPQS: All the cards, no idea how to play them.
HuwB

OPQS: All the cards, no idea how to play them.
gerry12ie

Four riders I really like so I would be happy to see any one of them win for different reasons
gerry12ie

Epic
Fontfroide

The right winner.  The guy is incredible.

AND he has the same first name as my son.
HuwB

Hows that for a KOD on Sagan?
Must have finished 15th Razz

Great edition of this great race.
gerry12ie

Might be a good time to dust off that 'how many monuments will Sagan win' poll...
Biosphere

His racing head has improved. Swiss Italian TV reckons it's the first time he's won a sprint? Seems unlikely but maybe it's true at this level?

Would have been happy for GVA to win so BMC would give him his head instead of him deferring to Gilbert so much.
gerry12ie

The 2011 edition, for me, was the best race in recent years but this tops it - what a way to make history, and he will probably equal Boonen's record next week.  Immense.
Fontfroide

I am still curious what Sagan was raising his hand for, just before he got dropped.  

Really good race to watch though, really good.
gerry12ie

Biosphere wrote:
His racing head has improved. Swiss Italian TV reckons it's the first time he's won a sprint? Seems unlikely but maybe it's true at this level?

Would have been happy for GVA to win so BMC would give him his head instead of him deferring to Gilbert so much.


Bunch sprint maybe, he beat Vanmarcke in the velodrome last year
gerry12ie

Ellen van Dijk won women's RVV today.  Ronde van Drenthe on ESUK now.
Biosphere

I presume they mean a few  in a sprint yes. Don't know if ES UK have stuck with it for post mortem, but he apologised to Belgium for beating out 3 Belgians Smile
HuwB

Fontfroide wrote:
I am still curious what Sagan was raising his hand for, just before he got dropped.  

Really good race to watch though, really good.


He was asking his car for a bidon...........................and 3 domestiques! Very Happy
HuwB

Biosphere wrote:
I presume they mean a few  in a sprint yes. Don't know if ES UK have stuck with it for post mortem, but he apologised to Belgium for beating out 3 Belgians Smile


I reckon that's why Terpstra finish 6th. Dutch.
OPQS should have been riding for him alone today.
Boogerd_Fan

Everything was going OK.. until about 40km to go Very Happy

My boy found wanting over 200km+ of racing again.

another question:
who the hell can stop Fabian doubling up next week??
Bartali

Terpstra .... as Huw says, he was the mant OPQS should have been behind.  Pleased for Cancellara ...even more pleased the OPQS wheel sucker and Vanmarcke missed out.  No one likes a wheel sucker!!
Bartali

gerry12ie wrote:
So so close!!!
gerry12ie



How the race was by Inrng http://inrng.com/2014/04/the-mome...ace-was-won-the-tour-of-flanders/

That picture illustrates where Cancellara showed Vanmarcke he was prepared to lose, and just like PR last year Vanmarcke jumped and did the job for him.  This older, smarter Spartacus might have a bit of mileage left...
Boogerd_Fan

Yes, which is what i wanted to point out re: Bart's comments about SVM.. he was animating race - not just wheel sucking (like Sagan tried Sad )
Bartali

Really!!  As I saw it, I think gerry's photo is about the only time SVM pulled his weight after the initial break.

Sagan was out thought, but I find him hard to accuse him of wheel sucking.  Sure he stopped pulling ... but only because 10 other me refused to chase and he was riding himself into the ground.

Great race ... but the most telling feature was Cancellara's smarts though out the whole race. Sagan wants to win too much ... which is understandable of course.
gerry12ie

I think Vanmarcke probably felt a bit bullied by Canc at PR last year, and threw a few sulky shapes today to make the point that he wasn't going to be pushed around.  I thought it odd that big Stijn didn't try to push on with GVA when he knew that Cancellara and Vanmarcke were coming across.  He might have had some chance in a two up but none with four...
kathy

Great race today!
Bartali

gerry12ie wrote:
I think Vanmarcke probably felt a bit bullied by Canc at PR last year, and threw a few sulky shapes today to make the point that he wasn't going to be pushed around.  I thought it odd that big Stijn didn't try to push on with GVA when he knew that Cancellara and Vanmarcke were coming across.  He might have had some chance in a two up but none with four...


Agreed ... easier said than done tho I guess.  Happy for Cancellara. Not a GVA fan per se ... but I think he deserved it today.
HuwB

Bartali wrote:
Really!!  As I saw it, I think gerry's photo is about the only time SVM pulled his weight after the initial break.

Sagan was out thought, but I find him hard to accuse him of wheel sucking.  Sure he stopped pulling ... but only because 10 other me refused to chase and he was riding himself into the ground.

Great race ... but the most telling feature was Cancellara's smarts though out the whole race. Sagan wants to win too much ... which is understandable of course.




Just sayin' Wink
Biosphere

gerry12ie wrote:

How the race was by Inrng http://inrng.com/2014/04/the-mome...ace-was-won-the-tour-of-flanders/


Inner Ring wrote:
On paper OPQS were the strongest team but as anyone who has tried to wipe their rear with a cobblestone will know there’s a big difference between paper and pavé.


Laughing
Bartali

Okay okay okay ... I still say he didn't pull as much as Cancellara and GVA but I'm not going to analyse the last 40 km to work out the number of minutes on the front.  (I'll leave that to a proper statitician like SR Smile )

Sagan could learn a lot from both of them ... but ultimately I think he id lacking a bit (by his very high standards) this year.
Fontfroide

Just my two centimes worth.  I was watching Sepp carefully, since I had him as an outsider.  I think he behaved impeccably for an outsider, for a guy who should NOT do more work than required to tow Fabian forward and should NOT tire himself out needlessly, in case he could outsprint GVM and FC, a possible but unlikely outcome.  I also saw him giving Fabian a bit of "what me?" when they were together, but also saw him pulling.  I also saw him attacking a few times too.  But overall, when riding with Fabian to catch up with a group including GVM, a known sprinter, I suppose I might consider myself a bit less than a teammate of Fabian's.  

Overall, I thought he behaved quite properly, and cannot, except by some biased Italophile upset and envious because there were no Italians, or even Italian teams, in the top group.  Speaking of nationalities, if there had been three Italians and Cancellara he would maybe been beaten.  Those Belgians just  didn't work him over enough.  but Cancellara is quite a rider, sometimes I think he is one of the best in history.  In fact he is one the greats, obviously.  If he wins Paris Roubaix, an unlikely possibility, he will be an immortal.
Biosphere

For me the only one that deserves the wheel sucker tag is Vandenbergh. Sagan was just hanging on in the end.

Fontfroide, I'm not sure if there's meant to be a smiley or two in your analysis as you share a joke with Bart? I do wonder what the two Italian parents of the winner would make of your analysis though Wink
Boogerd_Fan

Bartali wrote:
Okay okay okay ... I still say he didn't pull as much as Cancellara and GVA but I'm not going to analyse the last 40 km to work out the number of minutes on the front.  (I'll leave that to a proper statitician like SR Smile )

Sagan could learn a lot from both of them ... but ultimately I think he id lacking a bit (by his very high standards) this year.


I agree on the lacking something this year... i don't want to speculate its about teh contract talks... (he must be aware his value will go even higher if he scores big in the monuments) but rather counterproductive, this off-season he's moved from base in Italy to Monaco.. and i have a sneaky suspicion there was less focus on a structured winter program, getting a balance between moving home, training and some new girlfriend... i think he's underprepared.
Fontfroide

Biosphere wrote:
For me the only one that deserves the wheel sucker tag is Vandenbergh. Sagan was just hanging on in the end.

Fontfroide, I'm not sure if there's meant to be a smiley or two in your analysis as you share a joke with Bart? I do wonder what the two Italian parents of the winner would make of your analysis though Wink


I kind of forgive Vandenbergh though, no doubt acting precisely on orders.

I am pretty sure, Bio, that there could well have been some smileys, a good idea.  Winks maybe.  I forget sometimes and assume a dry humour never comes through as something nasty.  I love Bartali's "commitment" to the boot shaped place and its riders.  But smileys is a good idea.  Next time.
Bartali

Maybe I called it wrong ... Vandenbergh certainly the worse offender tho no doubt riding to orders.  Would probably have had a better result had he worked with GVA.

Seriously ... I don't think I have an axe to grind with any of the Belgium riders and pleased that Cancellara has finally made it to the same number as Magni.  

Boogie - I think you've hit the nail on its head.  Maybe the lad has let his eye of the ball .... for the moment at least!

PR promises to be good ... providing everyone stays on the bike.
mazda

Boogerd_Fan wrote:
Yes, which is what i wanted to point out re: Bart's comments about SVM.. he was animating race - not just wheel sucking (like Sagan tried Sad )


Sagan has to be one of the least wheel-sucky riders out there.
He is constantly attacking, chasing down attacks, unless too knackered.
mr shifter

Fontfroide wrote:
 but Cancellara is quite a rider, sometimes I think he is one of the best in history.  In fact he is one the greats, obviously.  If he wins Paris Roubaix, an unlikely possibility, he will be an immortal.
You mean, best within your short history.
Yes he will qualify for the "Hall of Fame".
gerry12ie

Dreaming of Paris-Roubaix


Biosphere

Vandenbergh was only following orders to be a wheel sucker Wink

I like that photo. Was it Belkin that had the skeleton at training camp a year our two ago?
Fontfroide

mr shifter wrote:
Fontfroide wrote:
 but Cancellara is quite a rider, sometimes I think he is one of the best in history.  In fact he is one the greats, obviously.  If he wins Paris Roubaix, an unlikely possibility, he will be an immortal.
You mean, best within your short history.
Yes he will qualify for the "Hall of Fame".


Hmmm.  Short history?  Maybe.  I still think he has a palmares that ranks him way high.  But like you say, he will get a place in the Hall of Fame, already has in fact.  

You think maybe I get over enthusiastic?  Probably.  But the guy is a master.  He has won, after all, as many as Magni. Wink
Bartali

.... but not three consecutive wins! Wink
mr shifter

I think I brought Fiorenzo Magni to the attention of this forum because he won the Giro d'Italia 3 times and his other achievement was the hat trick of Tour of Flanders wins.
The pity for him is that he rode against Bartali and Coppi and needed (after a bad crash) the inner tube attached to the handlebars to balance the bike with his teeth for 2nd place in the 1956 Giro d'Italia which went through snowstorms.

My point with the previous post is you seemed to forget the many great rides/riders of the 20th century and I find it a bit naughty to compare Cancellara with Fiorenzo Magni.
Neither rider qualifies as the "Best in History" but both qualify as great riders.

A similarity occurred at the weekend with football commentators who described a goal kicked from his own half and over the defense goalkeeper for a goal.
They named it a "Beckham" goal repeat, which my memory says is rubbish as that was seen when PELE scored the same type of goal from deep in his own half about 40 years ago.
gerry12ie

mr shifter wrote:
I think I brought Fiorenzo Magni to the attention of this forum because he won the Giro d'Italia 3 times and his other achievement was the hat trick of Tour of Flanders wins.
The pity for him is that he rode against Bartali and Coppi and needed (after a bad crash) the inner tube attached to the handlebars to balance the bike with his teeth for 2nd place in the 1956 Giro d'Italia which went through snowstorms.

My point with the previous post is you seemed to forget the many great rides/riders of the 20th century and I find it a bit naughty to compare Cancellara with Fiorenzo Magni.
Neither rider qualifies as the "Best in History" but both qualify as great riders.

A similarity occurred at the weekend with football commentators who described a goal kicked from his own half and over the defense goalkeeper for a goal.
They named it a "Beckham" goal repeat, which my memory says is rubbish as that was seen when PELE scored the same type of goal from deep in his own half about 40 years ago.


Except Pele missed... Wink


Link


*and Magni didn't have to race against Boonen
Fontfroide

Tell you what Mr S, I will try to control my enthusiasm.  When I see a superb ride in a very good race, I will just cool myself down, say "good show", and search the history books before I say anything (attempt at semi-humour).  I think you are carrying this comment about an obvious truth (there were better riders before Fabian Cancellara), a bit far.  Maybe you are one of those guys who has the gift for and desire to compare riders from one era and their results in particular races at particular times and come up with a totally "correct verdict" as to who was better than whom.  Magni rode more than 60 years ago.  Me, I like that kind of debate sometimes, but I think nearly everyone agrees it is a little bit hard to compare across eras.  I would never have said Cancellara's ride the other day made him better than Magni, or anyone else actually.  Why would I even think of that?  Magni was a great rider, no doubt whatsoever.  Although I personally have never seen a film of an entire race he rode or even the last fifty k.  And the inner tube thing made him a great story, hard, strong, stoic, never gives up.  

But I will reflect on my impression of Fabian's ride and palmares.  Although I MIGHT check to see if there has been a time when over five years of TF and PR anyone has won five of them and also finished second and third (with one to go to complete the five years).  Seems pretty impressive to me, especially since Boonen, among others, was riding and his palmares is mighty impressive too.  

[/b]
SlowRower

Bartali wrote:
Okay okay okay ... I still say he didn't pull as much as Cancellara and GVA but I'm not going to analyse the last 40 km to work out the number of minutes on the front.  (I'll leave that to a proper statitician like SR Smile )


Can't comment, I'm afraid, as I was out on my bike taking 100% of the wind at the time and don't have Eurosports anyway!

On a side note, do the pros worry about wheelsuckers as much as forumites appear to do? No-one seems to get ganged up on as punishment for past wheelsucking misdemeanours (or else it's done subtly) so I wonder if the pros take the view that if you wheelsuck and win then you've just played a good hand?

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