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Here come the bandwagoneers(14 posts)

Here come the bandwagoneersVelojon
Jul 9, 2003 7:48 AM
Go back and look at the strings after the prologue for all the gloom-and-doomers. Now LA and the boys drop the first of their hammers and the early nay-sayers are feeling the USPS religion coming on. BTW, Simoni had better be good in the mountains this year because now he not only has to hope that LA has a bad patch but also that Jan, Joseba, Stephano, etc do as well (not likely). He's got an uphill battle (pun intended).

VJ
Well said. (nm)Jon Billheimer
Jul 9, 2003 7:54 AM
An uphill battle indeedt-bill
Jul 9, 2003 8:00 AM
Simoni will have to completely dominate in the mountains to be anywhare close. He'll probably lose another 5-6 minutes on the ITT's to come. I don't think he can beat any of the affore mentioned folks by that much - especially not LA or Jan. Bye Bye, Gilberto!
Same every year...James OCLV
Jul 9, 2003 8:12 AM
Why do so many people choose to interpret tactics as weakness? I'll bet that Lance wasn't gunning to win the Prologue (admitedly he didn't go out hard enough), but I do think that he was trully disapointed in getting 7th. Don't forget, too, that he likes to play head-games with his competition...
I don't know which is more silly...Dwayne Barry
Jul 9, 2003 8:20 AM
thinking that because Lance finished a handful of seconds out of first in the prologue he's off-form, or thinking that whenever he doesn't win a stage/race that he might of it's because he didn't want to and is playing head games?
Me neither...James OCLV
Jul 9, 2003 8:35 AM
In truth, none of us (except you, maybe) have any idea of what were talking about...

His reaction to his result is what I'm talking about. It's all tactics. He knew (because he used the times posted by his teammates) exactly how to pace himself. He used to use Tyler for this all of the time...
So you mean...Dwayne Barry
Jul 9, 2003 8:50 AM
since he knew his time splits, if he wanted to, all he had to do is go faster? It's beyond the realm of possibility that he was riding at his limit? Maybe tried to lift his pace and couldn't go any faster?

Doesn't your rationale apply to any team's latter riders? They all have the intermediary times from the race, as well as more detailed splits from their teammates.
So you mean...James OCLV
Jul 9, 2003 9:05 AM
It's all speculation. Maybe his breakfast didn't sit right with his gut; who knows?

He said himself (again, you can't read too much into this) that he went too slow, and by the first check he knew that he couldn't lift his pace enough to make up 9 seconds...

As far as time splits go, It's common practice in TT's for support riders to set markers for their leaders. Why is this so inconcievable? I'm sure that you've race a few TT's, and you know that it's all about pacing. Go out too hard, and you'll blow before the end. Go out too easy, and you risk poor performance. Without "splits", how would a leader know how to optimally pace themselves? I don't remember exactly what year it was, but I remember Tyler said that he purposely didn't ride at 100% and played "rabbit" for Lance. What do you think the radios are for? I believe that on one other occasion, that Lance said, "I found out that I was xxx behind at the first split, so I knew that it was time to turn on the gas"...

As far as the prologue goes, it was probably too short for Lance to make up any time, and I'm sure that Lance gave 100%.
So he's not playing head games...Dwayne Barry
Jul 9, 2003 9:17 AM
but just simply lost the the prologue, perhaps because he went out too slow?

Yeah could be, or he just didn't have the legs to go faster even if he started harder.

I understand why time splits are important, but you're ealier post made it sound like you were saying once you know them it's just a matter of deciding to go faster.
What I'm saying is "Who knows"?James OCLV
Jul 9, 2003 10:05 AM
Stage racing is very psychological. Why do you think that Simoni is talking so much trash? He's trying to psych out the competition. My point was that Lance is notorious for doing this. Remember L'Alpe d'Huez from 2001 (Lance looking in trouble for the benefit of the camera), Last year's first ITT (that really stirred the pot for Lance's competiton)? I'm not saying that he decided to loose either the first 2002 ITT or this year's prologue; I just think that he didn't feel that either were all that important in the grand scheme, and used his results to play "psychological games" with his competition.

Lance is too consistant of a rider when he is on form. Consistant in the TT's, consistant in the mtns... How could he beat Millar by 1:40+ three weeks ago and get the result he got in the prologue? Either:

Millar gained a lot of form in 3 weeks,

or

Lance lost something in the last 3 weeks and is in trouble

or

Lance didn't think that winning the prologue was to his advantage tactically.

Besides, in a TT, you shouldn't be at 100% - there should always be room to go harder before the end. If not, you didn't pace yourself correctly... (which Lance may be guilty of).
Head gamest-bill
Jul 9, 2003 8:35 AM
I actually thought that LA was playing games with his performances in Amstel and LBL. Maybe not, maybe he just wasn't in good enough form to win, but he was in a break with a relatively short distance to go in LBL. I think he could have TT'd away for the win, but chose not to because he he didn't want his opponents to know what kind of form he had! It's all about the Tour for him. I didn't buy that crap about Eddy Merckx bad mouthing him in the press either. Call me crazy, but I think it was all a ruse!
Head gamesJames OCLV
Jul 9, 2003 8:38 AM
I think that he really wanted to win in the spring; road racing in general (not stage racing) is more about tactics and luck than who is the strongest rider...
Head gameslanterne rouge
Jul 9, 2003 8:39 AM
I will agree with you that Lance is a great tactitian, but I would strongly disagree that he didn't win LBL so as not to show his form for the Tour. It has been a career long goal for him to win LBL. I think he desperately wanted to win but was isolated on the run in and very few men on their good days can hold off a charging peloton. He just got beat.
That may be true but...t-bill
Jul 9, 2003 8:53 AM
A career-long goal to win LBL takes a distant backseat to his desire to win the Tour.