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Is TdF still the grand tour of grand tours?(16 posts)

Is TdF still the grand tour of grand tours?cyclopathic
Jul 31, 2002 9:30 PM
in his interview Lance priced Tour of Flanders above Paris-Roubaix because it is much more competetive; there's no clear dominator like Mapei or Domo in PR.

It seems that if one team (iBanesto, Postal) chooses to dominate TdF others would let it have it. Not the case with Giro. Even the usual argument longer/harder isn't true any more.

Shall we admit the truth: TdF is a local french race for sh!ty french teams nothing more and switch our TVs to Giro?
Um, I don't see what you're talking about...TJeanloz
Aug 1, 2002 4:36 AM
The Tour is still the most important race on the calendar for every division 1 team. The idea of it being a "French" race is propogated by people who are disappointed that their favorite team didn't make it into the race, even though their team had no better chance of contending than Jean Delatour did. Six of twenty-one teams at the Tour were french; eleven of twenty two teams at the Giro were italian; and seven of twenty one teams at the Vuelta were Spanish. So, actually, the TdF is the least nationalistic of the Grand Tours. Which proves that it is still such a big deal- when teams get left out of the Giro in favor of an Italian team, they don't care, there's no real impact. When a team gets left out of the Tour, they get upset about it- because that's an important race.

As far as the Giro and Vuelta being more entertaining, it has mostly to do with the fact that the teams are leaving their dominant riders at home, and the second-string is very competitive. Look at what the competition would have been like at the Tour if the three guys on the podium weren't there. Going into the final time trial, there were five guys within two minutes of each other- which is similar to what we see in the Giro and Vuelta.

So maybe the answer is to not allow riders who finish on the podium to start the next year? It would make it more interesting, in an asinine sort of way.
wellcyclopathic
Aug 1, 2002 7:25 AM
the point was that Giro/Vuelta haven't been dominated the way tour was in last 15-20 years. You stated that many teams don't take Giro as serious. On the contrary many teams pulled out of Tour, they had their best riders in Giro and sent second-string (Mapei sent third) to tour, is this serious?

I doubt Postal could do the same thing in Giro as they did in Tour, italians take it too serios to let someone take it from them. Tour is least nationalistic? probably not. You have 5 french team which shouldn't have been there, about as much italians in Giro and only 1-2 second hand Spanish teams in Vuelta, so Vuelta gets my vote. Giro had so many Italian teams just because there were no french face it.

Not allow riders to compete next year? would hardly work. Problem with tour is that you see the same teams/same riders year after year (with exception of french which are not competitive), and this doesn't encourage competition. Tour de Bore is a byproduct of team selection process.

Tour lost it IMHO
Did we see the same race?TJeanloz
Aug 1, 2002 7:46 AM
The French division 2 teams that were in the Tour were represented in almost every breakaway, something that certainly can't be said for ONCE or Postal. On the teams classification, the two worst teams were Italian, followed by a Belgian team, followed by the first French team. Jean Delatour had a stage win, what more do you want?

I was not aware of a team that pulled out of the Tour. And I don't know where you get the idea that Mapei sent their 'third' string. Their team included the World Champion, one of the best new prospects in Miguel Martinez, a solid sprinter in Tom Steels- who did they leave out? Musseaw (sp), who's never ridden well in the Tour.

This idea that the Italians are much more passionate is ridiculous. The Giro typically has an Italian winner because there are a lot more Italians in the race (more than half of the riders), and the other teams tend to send their scrubs, while the Italian teams send their best. The Spanish teams didn't send their best, Leipheimer wasn't there for Rabobank etc.

Show me a non-Italian Division 1 team that sent their BEST riders to the Giro. And show me an Italian team that didn't send their best. Also, show me an Italian or Spanish team that left it's best riders home from the Tour.

The Tour has all the best riders, which is why it is still the most prestigious, if sometimes dull, event.
I guess notcyclopathic
Aug 1, 2002 9:34 AM
the only reason French were in every breakaway is because Postal/ONCE didn't care they were non-factor. Same thing to many stage winners, they pulled out of GC competition and went after a stage (given enough time Postal/ONCE would let you go). Who is Leipheimer? the guy who barely finished 20 min behind leader? In ’96 that wouldn’t even cut first 30!

Martinez? show me one race he raced this year and I'll take it back. The guy isn't ready and they've had him ride it. Tom Steels? did he ever have a shot at final sprint? the best he managed was 28th and was gone after 4 stages. Whom Mapei left out: Garzelli (he had no intention to race it), Evans. Like it or not Mapei didn't race this tour, they used it for training.

Even if the teams didn't send their scrubs (which some did btw) they were not interested in contesting it. All they cared is about saving legs and getting a stage win. Just name me any rider from Giro top 20 who was in tour, Tylor?

A few pointers on underperforming teams:
Taconi stage win, 4(!) non-finishers (who was there but Dario?) they got what they wanted
Lampre managed podium spot (o'k their domestiques are slow and they didn't care much for overall team classification) better then any French team
Alessio Cassagranda quit
LOTTO finished behind Div 2 french teams, but they got that aussie..

Tour did not have many best riders, and it was dull because many teams withdrew from competition. Yes there were a lot of opportunists; it was interesting to watch stage wins and green jersey competition, GC and polka dot was boring boring boring.

Tour isn't what it used to be, and it is falling behind. It isn't about competition, but it is still the greatest show on earth. If you like to watch real cycling switch to Giro. It is unpredictable because team selection is more random and there're more riders competing.
Which of the best riders did the Giro have that the Tour didn't?TJeanloz
Aug 1, 2002 10:01 AM
Salvoldelli? Cipollini (who wouldn't have touched the G.C.; if he even finished it).

That's not much.
Tonkov? Cuapio?cyclopathic
Aug 1, 2002 10:56 AM
I am too lazy to go through the list, leave it up to you.

I think we in violent agreement. I am saying that tour sucks because we see the same teams doing the same thing all over again (basically pulling out of competition and going after achievable goals). You're saying wait, how about those div 2 froggies? they go all out! I am saying Giro doesn't have this problem italians race it dead serious, you're saying oh wait there're 12 macaroni teams no wonder they win.

Maybe the solution is to have 12 French teams on tour just like Giro, screw the ratings, that way it will come back to be a real deal. If there were enough people in peloton care to race Postal (iBanesto, Telecom, ONCE etc) could not control it, it would be a real race.

Lance maybe the best rider at tour but he wouldn't win if he hadn't team. How many great riders got squished in the past just because they had no team support and end up riding 90% up front.
have to agree w/ TJeanyeah right
Aug 1, 2002 2:52 PM
giro doesn't hold a candle to tdf interms of who is there in form. saying mapei used it as a training ride is a so what argument seeing as they're done anyway and their best gc man is serving 9 months. just about every div 1 or 2 team would give up most of their seasons to win a tdf.

instead of the tdf for french, the giro is for italians and the vuelta for spanish, just that they don't have so big a fight to pack out their fields that it becomes a big national issue. lets put it this way, the spanish teams didn't go to the giro because they couldn't get a tv deal back in spain, so they figured it wasn't worth it for the sponsors, but i would highly doubt they would skip the tdf under similar circumstances. just because lance blows up the tour for 4 years, and indurain for doesn't make the giro and all its inconsistant winners better.
Garzelli had no TdF planscyclopathic
Aug 2, 2002 2:35 PM
even before the laxative story came around. (did somebody set him up? I smell conspiracy ;)

Mapei had 2 sprinters and they got what they wanted a stage win. They had no GC plans whatsoever.

yes there's more money in TdF then Giro and competition is very high for stage wins. Unfortunately not GC. Many teams withdraw from GC and gave it up to USPS. from GC point of view TdF stopped being a race. I cannot imagine Lance blowing field 4 in a row in Giro or Vuelta.
Garzelli had no TdF plansatpjunkie
Aug 2, 2002 6:31 PM
If LA prepped for the Giro or Vuelta like he does for the tour he'd do the same damage. It's not like any Div 1 Italian GC riders (sans the ones busted for doping) missed the tour. Look all the grand tours are great, what makes the Giro so exciting is there isn't a dominator, so it's anyones game. Tyler almost won the damn thing riding with a broken shoulder for 2 weeks and you are going to tell me he has enough game to defeat Lance in a grand tour? Look the French homerism sucks, I don't think any Italian squads were screwed, Cannondale screwed themselves and Cippo is not enough to invite Acqua Sapone. Coast from Germany got screwed as they had the strongest team and some real conteders. Mapei, second string? look at the 2 rookie MTB crossovers. Martinez has a far superior MTB career to Evans and look where they sent each rider. It's not that teams withdraw from GC, they just can't compete. Beloki and Millar both said it best, either LA retires or the rest of us have to change the way we train and compete. Many teams know they have no chance for GC so a long breakaway and /or a stage win bring happiness to their sponsors. It's the same in all tours, grab the spotlight and make the guys paying your checks happy. It may be the trouble with Kelme, they haven't been getting all the pub since the days of the Spanish Civil War of the 99 and 2000 tour.
Lance?cyclopathic
Aug 3, 2002 12:37 AM
he probably would win Giro, but I doubt he could 4 in a row. Most attacks in tour were handled and defeated by Postal and posties helped Lance alot by setting up pace. Giro has diff crowd and any team trying to control peloton the same way would be torn apart. Then if 5-10 potential threats going on attack and your team cannot handle it you'd have to go and risk to blow (remember Pantani in '00?). Giro may not up to the same level as tour, still Big Mig won it only twice. agree LA wouldn't be anywhere w/o team and Bruyneel, and Giro is not the tour for any team to dominate.
I disagreecyclejim
Aug 3, 2002 8:40 AM
If Postal and Lance focused on the Giro, he could win it 4 years in a row I have no doubt in my mind about that.

I guess I'm not understanding your argument that LA wouldn't be anywhere without team and Bruyneel. Is there any rider in the peloton today that could be as successful in the TDF or Giro without team support? Of course not. What does that prove?
they know it bettercyclopathic
Aug 5, 2002 1:57 AM
that's why you don't see Postal at Giro. Giro isn't a race any team can control even the best of the best.
This argument is a joke.Len J
Aug 5, 2002 6:25 PM
I guess they don't do the local crit because they are afraid of losing this too!

Face it, given the choice, the majority of pros and pro teams would want to win the TDF if they could only win one race. The reason the Giro & the Vuelta are more competitive is because the elite riders don't focus on it, it's either an after thought or it's used to get ready for the Tour (a la Ulrich in 2001).

If Postal controlled the TDF they could control the GIRO.

As far as Mapai was concerned, they sent the best team they have to the TDF. Evans performance in the GIRO (his first grand tour BTW) was a total surprise to everyone including Mapai.

I don't know what you've been smokin' to come up with this argument, but I hope you brought enough for the rest of us!

Len
This argument is a joke.atpjunkie
Aug 5, 2002 7:53 PM
have to agree here. Like Miguel said I'd take a season of second places for a TdF victory. Agree on Mapei as well. Martinez was their new super hopeful and he road the tour while Cadel rode the Giro. I the big boys all showed for the Giro (and the Italians let them all in) it would be just like the tour.
What is the difference in FICP points between the two races? .nmOld_school_nik
Sep 23, 2002 8:46 AM