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it's just not like the old days - - - -(7 posts)

it's just not like the old days - - - -liv2padl
Jul 14, 2001 12:41 PM
back in the daze, guys like Eddy Merckx used to actually WIN the Tour. he RACED on the flats and CLIMBED in the mountains. today, guys sit back and play at racing strategy. it's not racing .. it's chess. the domestiques look after their "leader" on days when it's figured that he can win a stage or get a yellow or green or polka dot jersey. but where the heck is Lance? where is Mr. Telekom. sitting in and letting the peloton carry him along. hasn't come close to winning a stage and for that matter hasn't even tried. oh, he'll climb the mountains and perhaps he'll beat the rest of the crowd by enough seconds or minutes to actually win the Tour --- but is that what the Tour De France should be about? personally, i think not. bring back Eddy. there was a cyclist.
It wasn't just Eddy being great (although he was)Largo
Jul 14, 2001 1:00 PM
Cycling, with the increase of $ available, and the increase in the number of pro riders, has become more of a team event than it used to be.
I agree, eliminate teams from the TDF, and things might be very entertaining, or, they might be really lopsided.
Anyhow, the TDF is still a great event.
Oh well, back to my work.
Eddy was great, and so was Moltini.Cima Coppi
Jul 14, 2001 3:49 PM
Let's not forget that cycling was very much a team sport even when Eddy raced. His team Moltini supported him greatly in the one day races and in the TdF to a degree. Eddy's power did win him races, but he also depended on his team for support, and his competitors needed as much team work as possible to beat him. A tall order in the late 60's and early 70's.

It is a shame we are not seeing the current riders dominate the way he did, but on one hand it would be somewhat boring to see the same guy win over and over again. I think the TdF after Eddy has been more exciting because its been more competitive.

Any thoughts?

CC
Well, first off Eddy Merckx was a god among boysSpyder Ryder
Jul 14, 2001 5:25 PM
Look at it this way, very few sports have one person who everyone agrees is the greatest of all time. Basketball has Jordan, but what about Wilt?? or Kareem?? or Shaq(in 10 years or so)?? Football Montana?? or Rice?? or Brown?? or Sanders?? You see my point, only Gretzky is in the same league with Merckx. If you ask any cycling fan worth his bicycle, they will tell you Merckx was the greatest of all time. People actually got mad at him because he would win so much, imagine seeing Jordan playing against high schoolers, I wouldn't want to see that.

You said that cycling is not racing .. it's chess. Waht you have to realize is that it is a combination of the two spread out over 3 weeks. If you want racing check out NASCAR (uhhhgggg) but the chess part is what makes cycling interesting.
For cryin out loud....Tom C
Jul 14, 2001 7:03 PM
Why do you think Anquetil was called the Mathmatician? Because he tried to win every stage? When asked if he had any concern about a 3 second victory, Jacques answer was it was "2 seconds too many". This was back in the days before Merckx, who, god love him wasn't always the sharpest knife in the drawer when it came to decision making. This tour STARTS with l'alpe d'uez. What comes before is just filler.
re: it's just not like the old days - - - -Car Magnet
Jul 15, 2001 7:39 AM
I don't know if you can compare the different eras. Todays riders are more team oriented and specialized in certain aspects, and have the benefit of the advances in bike technology. The old school riders did seem to be more "macho". When I look at the pix of the old TDF's with the riders humping their own spares and tools, and riding on roads that look worse than Paris-Roubaix it simply amazes me. Either way I tip my hat to any and all riders that have finished a Tour.
re: it's just not like the old days - - - -AD14
Jul 15, 2001 5:19 PM
I miss the badger. He enjoyed making people suffer and did not mind his face in the wind.