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Zabel a possible winer in the Hamilton worlds?(6 posts)

Zabel a possible winer in the Hamilton worlds?BAi9302010
Oct 4, 2003 11:33 AM
Cipo named Zabel as a possible winner if he stays with the group and Bettini does not come through. He did show he could stick with the pack in the Vuelta over the not-so-big climbs and if it came down to a sprint none of the other riders who can make it over the climb have a chance (Cipo, Petacchi, McEwen, etc. aren't even going).

All of the origional favorites were riders who strived on tough courses but as the race gets nearer more and more sprinters are getting chosen.

I think another rider to keep an eye on should be Francico Casagrande, he's in great form and no one's really mentioned him, so if anything happens with Bettini he could have a shot (I think he'd also make a great world champ).

Anyone else have any thoughts on the WC's they want to share???
Paris-Tours tomorrowboneman
Oct 4, 2003 2:08 PM
Well, the next to last World Cup race is tomorrow and some of the World's participants will be racing. It's being broadcast on Eurosport so I'll be watching to see who's got what form. In truth, the Hamilton course is not more difficult than the 2001 World's in Lisboa and Zabel was there at the end. Of course, so were Bettini, Bartoli, Dekker, Ullrich, etc. I was there and the bunch stayed together until the last couple of laps so it will be interesting to see the tactics.

I'd take Freire over Zabel but still like Bettini to win it although in a head up sprint, it's Oscar Freire Gomez all the way. It will be interesting to see if a small group can get away which hasn't happened since 1998 at Valkenburg. Spain and Italy are my favorites and I'm tipping Sevilla as my dark horse along with Popvych.

Time trial's a hilly par cours, again like Lisboa. I'm tipping Millar followed by Bodrogi.

In the Women's, it's Nicole Cooke for the Elite Women and the TT. The latter if she's entered. My rider of the year in 2001, with due respect to LA, when she won the World's U23 Womens Road, TT and MTB.
Paris-Tours tomorrowBAi9302010
Oct 4, 2003 2:29 PM
I think Zabel won the bunch sprint in Lisbon in 2001. He's the best sprinter who's going to be there. Freire is probably a little better on this type of course though.

For the tt it will probably be Rich or Millar, Rich should have the upper hand cuz he'll probably be the last man off since he got silver last year and Botero isn't riding.

Bettini's gonna be too well marked.
The finish itself was a bunch sprint in 2001boneman
Oct 5, 2003 1:59 AM
The finish for first was a bunch sprint from a fairly long way out. I was about 100m from the finish line when I took this picture. The finish was prefaced by a long downhill run and they were moving along.

Zabel's on the far side of Dekker. Behind him, you can only see his helmet is Freire, and behind him is Bettini.

Rich may be starting last but the par cours doesn't suit him as opposed the one at Zolder. It's just too up and down for his bulk.

Yeah, Bettini will be well marked but so was Freire in 2001 having won it all in 1999 and then placing second in 2000. Neither Freire or Bettini have to be in a break to win it all.

As I said, the last winner out of a break was in 1998. In the break, Bartoli, Armstrong, Camenzind, Boogerd, Van Petegem, and Aebersold. Museeuw soloed away from Gianetti in Lugano in 1996. Clearly people do get away but you never know the tactics and pace until the race. The 2001 course was the most challenging since Valkenburg and the seasoned followers were sure that there would be a break. Hamilton looks like another challenging course but we shall see.
The finish itself was a bunch sprint in 2001BAi9302010
Oct 5, 2003 10:29 AM
Rich just won Grand Prix de Nations which is a tt held on an extremely tough course. Before they added the tt to the world championships in 1994, it was considered the un-official tt world championships.
The finish itself was a bunch sprint in 2001BAi9302010
Oct 5, 2003 10:37 AM
well we know Zabel's got his top-end sprint back now...whether he can stick on the climbs is anoter story