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How fast was Lance going when he went xc in the TDF?(10 posts)

How fast was Lance going when he went xc in the TDF?NatC
Aug 9, 2003 5:17 AM
Does anyone know what speed Armstrong was going when he bailed into the field? On a descent yesterday I was looking off the side of the road at the rough, wondering how well I would handle it if I were to hit it at that speed.
my best guesstimateBergMann
Aug 9, 2003 7:56 AM
Phil & Paul (the OLN commentators) said that the leaders were bombing the descent at 50-60 mph and braking down to 30 mph for the corners.

That was a pretty tight bend, and Lance was tailing Beloki, (and thus has a little more reaction time) but even assuming they were setting up the corner pretty carefully at about 30 mph, and Lance was scrubbing off speed as fast as he could once he noticed Beloki's fishtail, I'd say he was still doing at least 20 mph as he left the road.

That's still plenty fast for a tidy endo on 20 mm, treadless tires in loose dirt!

I recall that not too long ago, road riders had clauses in their contracts, forbidding them to engage in the "dangerous" sport of mountain biking (if I recall correctly, even Indurain was contractually forbidden to ride off road!).

I bet it's more than just the folks at Subaru who are now happy that Lance likes to play in the dirt in the off season!
Look closelyB2
Aug 9, 2003 9:08 AM
and you can see that once Lance leaves the pavement and is "past the point of no return", he actually starts to pedal and accelerate. If you look REALLY closely, you could see the lightbulb clicking on :-)

Bryan
Look closelygtx
Aug 9, 2003 9:23 AM
yeah, from what I could tell he was going very slowly and was in full control by the time he hit the dirt. I'm surprised they didn't penalize him--wouldn't have been that hard to return to the higher road, but he would have lost some time if he didn't take that short cut.
He did lose timeMel Erickson
Aug 9, 2003 9:58 AM
He would have lost more time if he backtracked to re-enter where he left the road. They didn't penalize him because he gained no advantage. The pack he got back on the road with was well behind him when he started his avoidance maneuver.
In F1 when you shortcutSprint-Nick
Aug 9, 2003 11:26 AM
In F1 when you shortcut a chicane especially to avoid an accident as long as you do not pick up any positions (at least excluding those who crashed) you will not be penalized. The same thing should be brought into this situation...

And I disagree from what you could tell... one he was still going pretty fast when he hit the dirt and he may have been in control but a spur of the moment reaction is just that. You can't fault someone for avoiding a crash.

-Nick
May have misinterperted?B2
Aug 9, 2003 8:33 PM
Sprint-Nick says "And I disagree from what you could tell... one he was still going pretty fast when he hit the dirt and he may have been in control but a spur of the moment reaction is just that. You can't fault someone for avoiding a crash."

I don't think anyone is saying Lance took the shortcut with the intent of gaining an advantage. As you say it was a spur of the moment reaction. I just thought it was interesting seeing Lance go off the road and trying to brake so he could dismount and hoof back UP the hill to get back on the pavement... and then about ten yards down the slope... You could almost see the thought process... "click"... hmmm... the road switches back... why don't I just pedal accross this grassy area and get back on the pavement down there... then the pedals start turning and the rest is history. I thought it was a brilliant improvisation(sp?).

Bryan
I don't think it was so much accelerating...off roadie
Aug 10, 2003 5:12 AM
as you can't really coast across gravel / grass with skinny tires, he pretty much HAD to pedal toa maintian control. It also gives him the chance to "loft" the front tire a bit, which is helpful in sandy soil, or so I find.

It was a pretty natural looking move. Anybody with CX or MTB expereince probably would have done the same thing, assuming they felt thier bike could take the "abuse". It is maybe a bit dicey when turning, especially on gravel. You'll notice that Lance didn't really try anything in the way of turns.

My road bike actually handles small jumps pretty well, and rides very well on grass- but my wheels weigh nearly 150% what Lances did. Then again, I don't have a team giving me fresh bikes whenever there's a problem with the one I'm riding...
and why didn't he wait up for JB anyway, huh????? nmDUOHEAD
Aug 10, 2003 8:05 AM
impressiveSao
Aug 10, 2003 9:08 AM
Whatever speed he was going, it was a helluva great piece of technical riding....capped off with a perfect re-mount and click into the pedals once he was back on the road. It was so weird it almost looked scripted. Poor Phil Liggett nearly swallowed his microphone.