2016 season thread

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2016 season thread

Post by Lowlandbrit on Thu 7 Jan - 21:11

First topic message reminder :

Here's your 2016 hub, pick out your own good, bad and ugly from the new crop of jerseys.


AG2R La Mondiale (FRA)

Astana Pro Team (KAZ)

BMC Racing Team (USA)

Cannondale Pro Cycling Team (USA)

Dimension Data (RSA)

Etixx - Quick-Step (BEL)

FDJ (FRA)

IAM Cycling (SUI)

Lampre Merida (ITA)

Lotto Soudal (BEL)

Movistar Team (ESP)

ORICA GreenEDGE (AUS)

Team Giant-Alpecin (GER)

Team KATUSHA (RUS)

Team LottoNL-Jumbo (NED)

Team Sky (GBR)

Tinkoff (RUS)

Trek-Segafredo (USA)
World Tour races:
RaceWinner
Tour Down Under (19/1-24/1)Simon Gerrans (OGE)
Paris-Nice (6/3-13/3)Geraint Thomas (SKY)
Tirreno-Adriatico (9/3-15/3)Greg van Avermaet (BMC)
Milano-San Remo (19/3)Arnaud Démare (FDJ)
Volta a Catalunya (21/3-27/3)Nairo Quintana (MOV)
E3 Harelbeke (25/3)Michał Kwiatkowski (SKY)
Gent-Wevelgem (27/3)Peter Sagan (TNK)
Ronde van Vlaanderen (3/4)Peter Sagan (TNK)
Vuelta al Pais Vasco (4/4-9/4)Alberto Contador (TNK)
Paris-Roubaix (10/4)Mathew Hayman (OGE)
Amstel Gold Race (17/4)Enrico Gasparotto (WGG)
La Flèche Wallonne (20/4)Alejandro Valverde (MOV)
Liège-Bastogne-Liège (24/4)Wout Poels (SKY)
Tour de Romandie (26/4-1/5)Nairo Quintana (MOV)
Giro d'Italia (6/5-29/5)Vincenzo Nibali (AST)
Critérium du Dauphiné (5/6-12/6)Christopher Froome (SKY)
Tour de Suisse (11/6-19/6)Miguel Ángel López (AST)
Tour de France (2/7-24/7)Christopher Froome (SKY)
Tour de Pologne (12/7-18/7)Tim Wellens (LTS)
Clásica de San Sebastián (30/7)Bauke Mollema (TFS)
Vuelta a España (20/8-11/9)Nairo Quintana (MOV)
Cyclassics Hamburg (21/8)Caleb Ewan (OBE)
Bretagne Classic Ouest-France (28/8)Oliver Naesen (IAM)
GP de Québec (9/9)Peter Sagan (TNK)
GP de Montréal (11/9)Greg van Avermaet (BMC)
Eneco Tour (19/9-25/9)Niki Terpstra (EQS)
Il Lombardia (1/10)Esteban Chaves (OBE)


Last edited by Lowlandbrit on Sat 1 Oct - 17:22; edited 13 times in total

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Azabache on Mon 25 Jul - 13:33

Let's not be too hard on Quintana. And his two two older Spanish colleagues did fine too.

Every team would like a rock like Poels-shades of Hincapie all over again.

One thing might help to create a few surprises and "panics"-ban these radios.

McL..as a former Lance admirer still in shock, we sincerely hope so-or there's NO hope.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by dummy_half on Tue 26 Jul - 12:42

Anyway, on to the Olympics.

Road race course looks a belter - a few early small climbs (rises of about 100m, one at near 10%, the other at more like 5%) on a circuit within the city then three times up a significant climb - 8km at 7%, before a 20km flat run back to the finish. Looks too tough for the sprinter/roleurs like Sagan or Matthews, but the long flat run in probably reduces the chance for a pure climber to make the break and stay ahead.

Obviously, coming so close after the Tour, rider form will be a bit unpredictable, but could be a course to suit guys who go well in the Ardennes classics. If it's a select group at the end, expect Valverde and Alaphillipe to be in contention, but if it's solo or a very small breakaway I can see any of Froome, Thomas or Cummings being up there (and can we claim Dan Martin for the UK, given he was born in Birmingham...)

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Big on Tue 26 Jul - 15:35

On the subject of winning 'clean' - what dummy_half said - with the additional note that Jacques Anqeutil won all 5 of his Tours before doping was banned in cycling. So irrespective of whether or not he took anything, he was clean as it was not against the rules and was considered acceptable at the time (and frankly given some of the stuff they were taking, you were probably better off riding without...).

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Lowlandbrit on Tue 26 Jul - 15:54

dummy_half wrote:Road race course looks a belter - a few early small climbs (rises of about 100m, one at near 10%, the other at more like 5%) on a circuit within the city then three times up a significant climb - 8km at 7%, before a 20km flat run back to the finish. Looks too tough for the sprinter/roleurs like Sagan or Matthews, but the long flat run in probably reduces the chance for a pure climber to make the break and stay ahead.
Interesting dynamic with the world championships being in Qatar this year, can't see many people doing both.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by dummy_half on Tue 26 Jul - 22:49

LB

Qatar's pretty flat (and hot, can also be windy). I'd assume the course will principally suit sprinters, plus of course the Worlds has bigger national teams and so the race will be easier to control. I certainly don't see any reason for the likes of Froome to take part - team GB will be built round Cav and possibly Swift, with the support mainly coming from the big Sky boys (Stannard, Rowe, Thomas). Can't help feeling though that Sagan will somehow find a way of retaining his rainbow jersey.

Certainly going to be a different dynamic from the Olympics. I think it's right that once every 5 or so years, the Worlds is held on a course that the pure sprinters can be competitive on.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Big on Wed 27 Jul - 8:07

It's hard to imagine that Froome will have enough left in the tank after Tour, Olympics and Vuelta for a serious go at the ITT at the worlds, but it's not inconceivable if he is there anyway and presumably he might be wanted there for the TTT?

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Mon 1 Aug - 10:38

Slovakia's road race world champion Peter Sagan has signed for German team BORA-Hansgrohe from Russian outfit Tinkoff, the team announced on Monday.

Sagan will join on a three-year deal, starting in 2017.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Azabache on Wed 10 Aug - 15:05

Just had an almighty shock: a headline says Armstrong has won again! Olympic lady time trialist it seems-surely no relation?

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Wed 10 Aug - 15:40

Difficult for Froome to keep that peak form up, he looked off pace in the road race. Cancellera looks like he could be on for gold in the TT

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Lowlandbrit on Sat 20 Aug - 18:33

Vuelta started today with a TTT won by Sky, Kennaugh is the first leader.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Azabache on Thu 25 Aug - 14:47

Well, I guess Froome has won it eh (the race)?

Shades of Armstrong all over again. Novelty here is that the TTT was on the 1st day, rather than, say, stage 3, 4 or 5. But no essential difference-the time taken may very well be enough for the whole race.

Main hope for a surprise may be Movistar. Contador seems shot and is getting bad luck too frequently for my liking. This is all relative of course-he's still awesome but there always seems to be one (or more) above him...

Great event though. And the ITV4 highlights programme has the inestimable David Millar commenting-almost worth the licence fee alone!

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Just John on Fri 2 Sep - 19:03

Vuelta Update

General classification after stage 13:

1. Nairo Quintana (Col/Movistar) 52hrs 56mins 29secs

2. Chris Froome (GB/Team Sky) +54secs

3. Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +1min 05secs

4. Esteban Chaves (Col/Orica) +2mins 34secs

5. Alberto Contador (Spa/Tinkoff) +3mins 08secs

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Sat 3 Sep - 14:07

Looks like Quintana is going to win this.  Movistar look very strong and are in a position to manage the remaining stages.  Two difficult mountain stages today and tomorrow which may or may not be decisive.

Simon Yates doing very well at the Vuelta in seventh place (3 and half minutes behind the race leader).  He and his twin brother Adam Yates seem to be the future of British road cycling.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Sun 4 Sep - 13:33

On this stage Movistar and Tinkoff (Contador) are driving Sky and Froome completely out of contention.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Lowlandbrit on Sun 4 Sep - 18:14

More than half the riders finished well outside the time limit today, but the jury have decided to keep them all in. Sky would have been down to just Froome.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Azabache on Mon 5 Sep - 11:08

An absolutely brilliant stage reminiscent of the "glorious uncertainty" of the past before these wealthy teams and the accursed radios have so often neutralised any real interest in so many stages of the Grand Tours.

I take with a pinch of salt the story that Contador et al seized the opportunity just after the start of the stage; this smacks of a plot hatched the night before. The Spanish HATE anyone other than a Latin winning their race. For any newer enthusiasts to the sport just read up on Robert Millar's debacle in this race many years ago.

As always, David Millar's (no relation) coverage on ITV4 was superb with his early realisation that Sky were in deep danger.

If Froome recovers this now I take my hat off to him as an all-time great; otherwise, he's had a salutory lesson. To their credit, Brailsford afterwards was very generous, and humble, as to what had happened.

Oh to more of stages like this!

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Born Slippy on Fri 9 Sep - 19:40

So Froome slashes over 2 minutes out of Quintana on the time trial. But for the error/bad luck on Sunday he would now be well ahead. As it is, he needs 1 min 20 or so on the last mountain top stage. Feels unlikely given Quintana has looked marginal stronger. Any chance?

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Just John on Fri 9 Sep - 19:50

General classification after stage 19:

1. Nairo Quintana (Col/Movistar) 75 hrs 18mins 52secs

2. Chris Froome (GB/Team Sky) +1mins 21secs

3. Alberto Contador (Spa/Tinkoff) +3mins 33secs

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Lowlandbrit on Mon 12 Sep - 18:39

World Tour rankings with two races left:

Riders:
1- Nairo Quintana (609)
2- Peter Sagan (585)
3- Christopher Froome (564)
4- Alberto Contador (428)
5- Alejandro Valverde (396)

Teams:
1- Movistar (1411)
2- Tinkoff (1277)
3- Sky (1187)

Nations:
1- Spain (1415)
2- Colombia (1318)
3- Great Britain (1050)

Nations that will have 9 riders in Qatar: Australia, Belgium, Colombia, France, Great Britain, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Switzerland.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by SecretFly on Thu 15 Sep - 8:56

Born Slippy wrote:So Froome slashes over 2 minutes out of Quintana on the time trial. But for the error/bad luck on Sunday he would now be well ahead. As it is, he needs 1 min 20 or so on the last mountain top stage. Feels unlikely given Quintana has looked marginal stronger. Any chance?

Prednisolone? Whistle

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by dummy_half on Thu 15 Sep - 10:09

SF

Froome taking 2 minutes out of Quintana on a TT bike is hardly a surprise. Froome is a very good ITT rider (hence the Olympic bronze medals in the event) while Quintana is more typical of the very small 'pure climbers' in that his objective is to minimise losses. Indeed, the commentary for the ITT stage suggested that Quintana's ride was very good for his standards.

As for Froome's TUE release, one of these was already in the public domain (the 2014 one), and it's a remarkably thin record for someone who has been a pro cyclist for 9 years - two instances where he has required medication is a lot less than many other sportsmen.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by SecretFly on Thu 15 Sep - 10:37

Dummy, it is quite strange though, is it not, that a guy that requires medication and might be best advised to rest right through the period of his discomfort or incapacity, should instead be allowed a product that in American clinical trials - specifically and ironically carried out on a group of cyclists....! - real verifiable performance benefits were noted in those using prednisolone over those on a placebo.  Both glucose and insulin rose, performance rose with noted changes in hormonal and metabolic responses.

Is it not strange that the medication these cyclists, and other athletes named, seem to always require is also miraculously a 'medication' that affords real benefits to performance?
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17805102

If he was a Russian would we be saying everything is grand - he and the others were obviously sick?

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Born Slippy on Thu 15 Sep - 11:41

I think we would wouldn't we? He's taken it twice, neither time during a major tour. Seems suggestive of a legitimate medical reason for taking it to me. One might say it shouldn't have been approved and he should have been told he should just not race if he was ill but I'm struggling to see how Froome can be criticised. Indeed, I believe he has always openly said he has had two TUEs - a statement now proved to be true.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by dummy_half on Thu 15 Sep - 11:50

SF

I don't think anyone disputes that Prednisolone has some potential performance enhancing effects. It also has some side effects that are potentially detrimental - weakness of limbs being one known effect, but that would be the case more for continuous use. It is also a very useful medicine for a range of conditions.

You need to look a bit more closely at Froome's TUEs - they both cover periods of 1 week (ignoring the typo on one of the 3 versions of the 2014 form). One was during the Dauphine stage race in 2013 and the other was during the Tour of Romandie 2014. He has never taken anything under a TUE during the Tour de France or during this race.

The basic conclusion from the release of Froome's data is that he does not appear to try to play the system with regard to doping under TUEs - there are certainly other sportsmen who have records that suggest they have stretched the boundaries of the system (for example, at the moment there is a scandal in Norway over the use of asthma medication under TUEs for a large proportion of their cross country skiers and biathletes).

Of course, TUEs are in place to allow athletes to take drugs that would otherwise be banned for legitimate medical reasons, so showing that sportsmen have had TUEs basically only shows times when they have had health issues. They are not an indicator of doping (or otherwise).

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Thu 15 Sep - 16:51

There was a study a while back that showed elite swimmers had a higher incidence of asthma than the general population: the suggestion being that they over expose themselves to chlorine and various microbes / fungi in water during their excessive training schedules.  Just over training can lead to medical issues - they are also breathing in a lot of air and if the air contains pollen, microbes, fungal spores, pollutants - issues can arise.  The over stressed body is more susceptible to ill health issues.  The key is that the dopers use obvious things and they use it regularly.  Meldonium although it took a while for WADA to cotton on, still had to be reported I believe, although it didn't require a TUE. Sharapova used Meldonium before many of her matches.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Sat 17 Sep - 20:19

It's being reported that the Rio road racing route has claimed the life of paracyclist Bahman Golbarnezhad - the same mountain descent that saw injuries to the leaders in the mens and womens road race at the Olympics.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 18 Sep - 10:00

That route --- as well as proven to be highly dangerous (the female cyclist in the Olympics was very lucky not to have been injured more seriously when asked to win a race by descending such a winding course at top speed on the home run-in)
...but not only was it a highly dangerous course - and you'd ask how the organisers could have looked at it and sanctioned it - it was also a pretty grim scenic route overall too when you consider the panoramas that could have been offered in a place like Rio.

Not Rio's best choice on a number of levels.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Sun 18 Sep - 13:30

It's been reported that it was not the same descent but a similar descent in the same mountain region.  Asked whether it was dangerous there has been lots of prevarication saying it "shouldn't" be dangerous and that cycling is "inherently" dangerous.  What has also been reported was that the cyclist went off the road and broke his neck.  He was stabilised somehow but deteriorated on the way to hospital and then suffered a cardiac arrest.  Cardiac arrest could be caused by a number of complications but that's all that has been indicated at the moment.  Clearly the circuit was dangerous - the fact someone died is a sign of that, plus the various serious crashes on similar mountainous descent sections at the Olympics.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Azabache on Mon 17 Oct - 14:18

Terrific coverage yesterday (BBC Red Button) on the Worlds Elite Men's Road Race.

The sublime David Millar gave a master class in analising every nuance of the race and forsaw the potential danger of the cross winds.

Although they were only following orders, and performing a team function, was pleased that the Belgians came away with nothing.

As for Sagan...and Cavendish!

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Mad for Chelsea on Mon 17 Oct - 14:54

Quite an interesting race, the Belgians made a big move to create the break-up, but by having to work so hard to stay away they didn't have much left to shake up the group as the sprint approached. Then again, they had riden so hard no one else did really either. Cracking job by Blythe to look after Cavendish all day, and a shame Cavendish made that slight mistake going the wrong side, and getting squeezed behind Matthews. Would have backed him to take it otherwise. But Sagan is obviously a tremendously worthy champion, what a superb rider clap clap.

It was nice to see Boonen and Cavendish - despite the obvious disappointment of the latter - be the first to congratulate him at the finish, it was a lovely show of sportsmanship I thought.

Re the commentary, I'm a bit jealous. I'm in France at the mo and was reduced to watching on BeinSport, whose commentators are average if we're being kind. The brilliant David Millar (who I loved through the TdF) something they could only dream of...

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Guest on Mon 17 Oct - 22:29

Sagan looked stronger than Cavendish - yes Cavendish was blocked for a short period of time, but when it cleared for him and the hole appeared Cavendish just didn't seem to have the acceleration that he has displayed in the past.   If he had felt stronger then maybe he would not have held on to the tail of Sagan for so long (he could have gone a little earlier).  I think the final stretch was also up an incline rather than being entirely flat - so that may have been a reason for the acceleration seeming to be just a little sluggish from Cavendish (compared to Sagan).  

I think the Belgians were caught out with the Dutch (?) rider accelerating off in the final 2 km - it was one of the Belgians that exhausted himself chasing after him catching him with about 600 metres to go.

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Re: 2016 season thread

Post by Fernando on Tue 18 Oct - 10:17


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Re: 2016 season thread

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