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#13 TT: As expected. But the big surprise is...(8 posts)

#13 TT: As expected. But the big surprise is...Spunout
Sep 19, 2003 7:31 AM
Heras.

As a pure climber, he certainly limited his losses today to IGDG and Nozal. Don't forget he smoked Frigo and AG in the process.

Good velonews article today with quotes from Heras, saying that it is impossible for him to compete because this is a TT specialists parcours. Not alot of climbing left, and with Nozal on a roll, it might be a wrap!
Agree...Dwayne Barry
Sep 19, 2003 7:39 AM
huge TT performance from Heras, while Frigo and Aitor were both sub-par. I thought Heras was a long-shot for the podium going into today but not now. OTOH, both Nozal and GdG extended their advantage. Hard to see how ONCE could lose this unless both of them implode!
Who expected Heras to beat Beltran?Spoiler
Sep 19, 2003 7:45 AM
I thought today was a total shock. I still didn't think Nozel would pull off another one. Nobody expected Aitor and Frigo to crack on a course perfectly suited to them. Nobody, not even a loyal Heras booster like me expected Roberto to stay as close as he did, and only lose 20 seconds to Igor.
I think Heras has a good chance of moving into second by gaining time on the steep climbs and the final time trial. I think it will take bad weather and/or a serious blowing by Nozal for Heras to make up five minutes.
Yes, serious climbing required,Spunout
Sep 19, 2003 8:00 AM
but the route doesn't offer it to Heras, like the Tour offers itself to Armstrong. Heras will have to be very, very strong in the remaining mountains to take second from IGDG.

Nozal will suffer and hang on, I don't think IGDG can put serious time into him.
if USPS wants to...QUiTSPiNiNArOuND
Sep 19, 2003 10:05 AM
They have to set hard, hard, hard tempo up both the mountain stages, put the whole peloton into hurt, Nozal said he is not a great climber, nor is GDG. Heras doesn't feel a thing on climbs prior to the last one. If USPS takes all the reserve of what might be a nervous Nozal, then he could crack at the end, but it's something that postal has to do to win. Right now all ONCE can do is hold on as I belive this was the last time to work on their terrain, and they have a huge margin of 5:13.

On todays TT, i expected Heras to ride well, but not that well. I saw on OLN as they were showing the stats of Beltran and Heras, that they weighed the same? I don't know if thats true, but if it is Heras should be able to beat Beltran or vice versa. Nozal is just on cloud 9 right now, i think he has almost got it in the bag, but USPS with a great team will always try to spoil the party.
One big problem with that...Dwayne Barry
Sep 19, 2003 10:09 AM
is that the two mountain-top finishes on stages 15 & 16 are the only climbs on those stages. So there are no prior climbs for Nozal or GdG to be worn down by Postal. There is another mountain day but it's not terrible, a couple of cat. 1 climbs, but then a descent and flat run-in to the finish.
..how about a flat run-in with severe crosswinds! :-p nmSpunout
Sep 19, 2003 11:16 AM
Of all the teams to try to catch-out with an attack...Dwayne Barry
Sep 19, 2003 11:31 AM
in the cross-winds, ONCE is the least likely.