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Someone tell me about Indurain...(29 posts)

Someone tell me about Indurain...aet
Mar 20, 2002 8:48 AM
How did he win his tours? his day was before i became interested in cycling so i just know he won alot.
was he a bigtime climber like lance or was he some other kind of rider?
Mar 20, 2002 8:53 AM
Indurain was not human in power terms. He was far and away the best time trialist in the peleton, and was able to ride a slow, steady cadence uphill in a bigger gear than anybody else.

Lance is similar- though you can't really consider him a climber, nor is he as physically big as Indurain was.
Mar 20, 2002 9:13 AM
They said he was unhuman, nothing fazed him, very strong, physically and mentally. Five TDF wins in a row. If you can purchase the book "An Intimate Portrait of The Tour De France" there is a nice spread about him. Of course remember you have to give credit to his team also....
re: Someone tell me about Indurain...dzrider
Mar 20, 2002 9:18 AM
I recall an article in VeloNews about lung capacity and Big Mig was supposedly off the charts. Much like Tiger Woods golf game looks bigger and easier than other golfers, Indurain's riding looked bigger and easier than other cyclists.
Mar 20, 2002 9:31 AM
Didn't I read somewhere that he had some completely abusred lung capacily - like 1.5 times the average of a cyclist or something?
re: Someone tell me about Indurain...RayBan
Mar 20, 2002 9:21 AM
As soon as you start reading about Miguel, you will see that he was an incredible time trialist. He pummelled the competition in the time trial and most of his tour victories were solidified because of that ability. He is somewhat bigger than most other cyclists and he still had the ability to climb very well. He was a very subdued quiet, personal athlete that never drew attention to himself while off the bike. BUT aside from those abilities he always focused on the multi day tours not the classics. He was a tour specialist that excelled at the timetrial. He took that ability to the velodrome and held the hour record for a while.
Power, patience, and dominationMcAndrus
Mar 20, 2002 9:28 AM
I'm assuming from your post that you don't have a collection of Indurain race tapes. I have a few and I even have some old VCR tapes of ESPN broadcasts.

Here is an interested lay opinion. Indurain was the most powerful cyclist of his period, which lasted from 90-96. In the TdF he would destroy opponents in time trials then protect these leads in the mountains.

In my opinion Lance is a better climber and Miguel was a better time trialer. If you watch the tapes, it's obvious that Big Mig didn't have the ability to accelerate on a climb ala Lance.

Now, saying Miguel was a lesser climber is very misleading. He finished mountain stage after mountain stage in the top five: chasing the likes of Pantani, Virenque, and Chiapucci up the great Cols. The climbers would attack and attack while Indurain calmly pedaled at 90 rpm (I counted) up the mountains at a steady pace and he'd reel most of them back in. Indurain even won a mountain stage in 89, but I forget which one.

There are two memorable Indurain TdF moments for me. In the 95 Tour, he managed to start a solo breakaway (imagine how hard it would be for Lance to start a solo breakaway!) and Johan Bruyneel joined him and sat on Mig's wheel for mile after mile. Indurain churned out the miles at visibly high power levels and Bruyneel pipped him at the line.

The other moment was from the ESPN coverage of the 95 Tour in a post race interview with Lance. On that stage, Lance had managed to get into a breakaway that contained Indurain and several other studs. Lance was eventually dropped from the group and he told the interviewer, "I did all the right things, made all the right moves, and Indurain just rode me off his wheel. He just rode me off his wheel!"

I still think Indurain could have taken 6 Tours with a little better luck. His great collapse was in the Les Arcs stage of the 96 Tour, won by Bjarne Riis. Indurain had a full-on bonk on the main climb and Riis saw it and attacked. (This was, by the way, how Ullrich lost the 98 Tour to Pantani - one bad day in the mountains at Les Deux Alpes.)

After Les Arcs I thought I could see the fire leave his eyes, even through my 25 inch television screen. He retired at the end of that season.

To quote Lance, "Indurain was a god."
a lesson for us allmr_spin
Mar 20, 2002 10:22 AM
Indurain never seemed to show panic when someone attacked him. He just calmly and almost methodically reeled them in.

One of my all-time favorite stages was in stage 9 in 1995, which was a mountain top finish at La Plagne. It was hot. It was also the first mountain stage and had three Cat 1 climbs. Alex Zulle, who was four minutes back from Indurain had taken off pretty early. There were some serious chasers, including Lance Armstrong (not a climber in 1995!), but Indurain and Banesto kept their cool. Zulle was up five minutes at one point.

Indurain hits the final climb with a few others, but one by one they all disappear. It was amazing. They all cracked and faded away. But not Indurain. No one can keep up with him, and he hardly looks like he's working. His form never seems to fade. He keeps up his pace and pulls back 2 1/2 minutes on Zulle, who eventually wins the stage after his 70K break over two passes. Very impressive stuff. Zulle came in second overall that year.

Lance won the stage into Limoges that year in another very exciting stage. Jalabert winning on Bastille day, with another example of Indurain coolness. 1995 was a very good Tour, except for the death of Fabio Casartelli.
Power, patience, and dominationharry hall
Mar 20, 2002 10:25 AM
He most likely could have taken time out of Greg LeMond in the 1990 tour and won that had he not been ordered/committed to support Pedro Delgado. If Big Mig had been able to ride for himself a year earlier, his streak would have started then. Oh, and there's a Mexican restaurant near me called Miguel's, it's fun to eat there in wet weather and say that I had lunch at Miguel's in da rain.
A favorite Liggett momentMcAndrus
Mar 20, 2002 10:31 AM
I never saw the 90 Tour in real time or on tape but someday I may pick it up. In the 89 Tour when Miguel wins a mountain stage from LeMond, Liggett repeatedly mispronounces Indurain's name, calling him "Mee-gwell." It makes me cringe every time I watch the tape.
That WAS the '90 tourElefantino
Mar 20, 2002 1:22 PM
I have it on tape, too. It's the stage up Tourmalet, and Indurain was being Tonto to Pedro Delgado's Lone Ranger. When Delgado cracked, Indurain left him and won the stage, which essentially ended Delgado's reign as team leader.

Phil Liggett also prounced Big Mig's last name "in-doo-ran"!!

Excellent post; if I could add one moment I can't forget...sprockets2
Mar 20, 2002 3:53 PM
Actually, it is one of the few that I remember clearly, but it is still a great one. It may have been 94 or 95 during a TT. Indurain was just ripping along-not a very high cadence, but he was flying. And here he comes up on Lance. He goes by like Lance was standing still.

I think it is very interesting how so many comments were made about Lance, at various times, that forshadowed his ascension in the sport. This was one such time. The announcer-maybe Ligget-says something to the effect that Lance is a great athlete, and may yet be one of cycling's greats, but not on this day. And there goes Miguel, just getting smaller and smaller. An awesome display.

I totally agree about 96, it really did seem as if more was lost on that mountain on that absolutely miserable day than just one stage. You could feel it. I could not believe how he could not bounce back at all in the balance of the tour. Shocking develpment.
More Indurain stuff...DINOSAUR
Mar 20, 2002 9:44 AM
I couldn't find anything about his lung capacity, but it was superior to Merckx by nearly a liter. His heart rate was 28 beats per minute. Although they said he had to work hard to get where he was at. Maybe we should throw patience in there as one of his strong points. He contributes his climbing ability to losing weight, and his own words to his success were "hard work and determination".
More Indurain stuff...monkey mlik
Mar 20, 2002 10:47 AM
Indurain did indeed have a resting HR of 28 bpm. Big Mig's
greatest skill was his ability to recover. I read on an Indurain website somewhere that about a minute after a TT where his HR was sky high, it would drop back down to around 60 bpm.
I agree that Indurain could have won 8 if he had not be ordered to help his struggling and past his prime Delgado.
That year he on the Luz Ardiden stage ahead of Lemond.
Indurain was the complete rider with an incredible amount of power, he even won a bunch sprint at the worlds beating out many top sprinters.
Indurain also won a classic the san sebastion classic in spain, his critics say that he only races the Tour.
Indurains response to that was to ride and win the Giro and then the Tour 3 weeks later, he did this I believe 2 or 3 times. A french health magazine said that Indurain was the perfect model of a athlete inevery respect.
Indurain retired from the sport after falling out with his life long team Banesto.
Last but not least, in the era of body fat measuring, Indurain won his tours with about a 10% body fat measurement. I could go on for days about this rider, one of the greatest to ever pedal a bike.
How big is Indurain?Softrider
Mar 20, 2002 10:36 AM
He was pretty large compared to the rest of the riders, I was just wondering if anyone knew just how tall he was and his weight?

The early 90's tours were some of the best that I can remember, Indurain was just superhuman.
The Secretariat of CyclingJon Billheimer
Mar 20, 2002 10:47 AM
In addition to his phenomenal lung capacity and low resting heart rate, he had the highest recorded VO2 max of any cyclist @ 92ml/kg. I believe the only higher VO2 max measurements have been from cross country skiers--Bjorn Dahle, if memory serves.
The Secretariat of CyclingLen J
Mar 20, 2002 10:55 AM
This came off an Indurain web site:

Caracteristics Physical

Caracteristics physical
Miguel Indurain

Flow cardiac
47 litres/minute

Volume cardiaque (Diastolique)
460 millilitres cubes

Power Average
550 watts

Cardiac Pulsations at rest
30 per minute

Cardiac Pulsation effort average 150-160 per minute
Cardiac Pulsation effort Maximun 180 per minute
Cardiac Pulsation Rupture of effort 195 per minute

Oxyge uptake
80 millilitres per kilo per minute

VO2 Max 80-85 Ml/Kg/Min
Diameter ventricular
6,8 centimètres

His oxygen uptake was amazing.

re: How big is Indurain?cyclopathic
Mar 20, 2002 11:03 AM
here's some comparisson data

Aerobic Capacities of Some Worldclass Cyclists
Aerobic CapacityAerobic Capacity
CyclistWeight (lbs)Height(ml/kg-min)(Cal/min)
Lance Armstrong 1665'10"8030.2
Miguel Indurain 1766'2"8835.2
Greg LeMond 1555'9"9332.3
Eddy Merckx 1655'11"7728.9

Greg Lemond was no slouch either NMDINOSAUR
Mar 20, 2002 1:54 PM
wonder how many he could have woncyclopathic
Mar 20, 2002 4:19 PM
if he didn't get shot
How big is Indurain?jawa
Mar 20, 2002 7:50 PM
I am not sure how tall he was but when I use to volunteer at the Lance Armstrong foundation his bike was there waiting to get mailed back and it was huge. It must have been a 62 or 63.
Most interesting statmmaggi
Mar 20, 2002 10:49 AM
Many choose to remember the 5 TdF victories in row.

I choose to remember that within that 5 year frame he also won the Giro d'Italia 2 years in a row (92, 93).

In other words, 2 years in a row he won both the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France.

That's quite a feat.
re: Someone tell me about Indurain...bartali
Mar 20, 2002 11:21 AM
What everyone has said about Indrain in their respective responses is true.

He was an excellent stage race cyclist and an excellent time trialist. He was very strong in the hills but not the best.

He won Giro & Tour in the same year for two consecutive years (92 & 93 ?) but was not known for day races or rather the Euro classics.

One of the greatest cyclists of all time. Could be in the top 5 for most fans or even as low as 7th.
re: check this outcollinsc
Mar 20, 2002 11:52 AM
He's the one on the leftmoneyman
Mar 20, 2002 12:00 PM
Photo from the Lance Armstrong Foundation Ride for the Roses weekend in 2000.

Size? I'm 5'11' and 210 lbs. in that picture.

Modest. Unassuming. Gracious.

My Miguel moment - riding in a group of about 120 at the RftR weekend, Miguel is six feet from my right side, Lance is 10 feet ahead of me. My thought: "This is the coolest thing I have ever done!"

This whole thread has been VERY informative and entertaining.

And Miguel can predict a thing or twoRutterMan
Mar 20, 2002 12:36 PM
Miguel also predicted that Lance would win the Tour de France in 1999.
re: Someone tell me about Indurain...koala
Mar 20, 2002 4:12 PM
I loved his modesty.
Miguel could afford to be modest....Djudd
Mar 20, 2002 4:49 PM
At the height of his powers he was absolutely unbeatable. I remember a Tour Dupont time trial where he completely blew up the field as if it was standing still. I think he caught three riders (one was Lance). Though not a true climber he ground down climbers with a relentless cadence.
interesting stuff. thanks all.(nm)aet
Mar 21, 2002 6:36 AM