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  1. #1
    don d.
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    Ullrich and Vino -vs- Lance?

    Interesting interview with Vino:

    http://www.procycling.com/tdfstart_n...asp?newsid=453

    Maybe Tonto can show up and ride for Lance. He was always there for the Lone Ranger!

  2. #2
    Forum Admin lotek's Avatar
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    Interesting that no one team has been able to challange
    lance, and that it takes a group effort (of attacks) to
    get the job done.
    But it isn't just Jan and Vino, have to add in
    Tyler/Sastre, Mayo(and whole Euskatel team) who are
    also attacking him.
    It almost doesn't seem fair does it?

    Marty
    Sono pił lento di quel che sembra.
    Odio la gente, tutti.

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  3. #3
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    This isn't a Europe v America thing........... Greg Lemond was a very popular guy in the peloton, which came in handy in both 1989 and 1990. You also might remember Stephen Roche winning the 1987 Giro when the whole crowd, most of the bunch and half his own team were convinced he'd double-crossed his teammate, Visentini? He had a lot of help from his friends of various nationalities, from different teams. Armstrong is a Patron type- but a modern, part-time boss. We may see some old scores settled when it becomes apparent LA is past his best (whenever that happens).

  4. #4
    serial mender
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    Lotek,

    I hate to say it, but the logic of your argument doesn't work--insofar as it applies to anyone. We could say that it takes L.A., Mayo, Vino, etc. to stop Ullrich from grabbing yellow. We could even say that these guys (and all of the other 160 riders) are all working to prevent Zabel from taking the yellow.

    Despite what Vino says, it is pretty far-fetched to think that there is a real conspiracy against L.A.. Why should anyone help Lance (or anyone else for that matter), unless it betters their own chances?

    L.A. may have made a mistake in saying (as he has all Tour) that Vinokurov is no threat. It remains true that Ullrich's comeback is stronger than many expected.

    What a delightful Tour, though. It is going to be head to head right into Paris. Whoever wins it will have truly deserved the glory.

    Cheers,
    Jamie

  5. #5
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    Originally posted by jmlee
    I hate to say it, but the logic of your argument doesn't work--insofar as it applies to anyone.
    Nah. I think it's still everyone against LA, at least until they see him truly crack. It's not quite as polarized as it was prior to the ITT. From online coverage, it sounded like JU & LA cooperated to limit damage from Vino, and hang on to their positions. Cooperation required by the moment.

    Random thoughts:
    If I were JU, there would be two scores I'd want to settle. I think he's already taken care of the first one. Mr. Godefroot, kiss my saddle sore covered @ss. The other one may come Monday... I'd have been practicing my "look" in the mirror, and dying to deliver. Climbing with a slower cadence than anyone else, does Jan look tough or what? I hope the winter book contracts don't interfere with his training.

    Vino remains amazing.

    What is up with Saeco? Stage 13 they work like h#ll to drive the pace, and Gibo is nowhere to be seen. Stage 14, nary a domestique to be found, and Gibo takes the stage. What's that all about??? Maybe it's an Italian thang (he said, reflecting on some past Giros).

    All that said, I hope Lance wins his 5th. For hard work in season, and off season. But if he doesn't, it will be because the best man won. I'm a perennial fan of underdogs... who's got the most aggressive jersey? Certainly, Vino deserves it. Or maybe a new one... biggest 'nads (no, I don't want to know what it would look like).

    As Andrew Hood (who writes for VeloNews) says:

    By the way, just a friendly suggestion, but you might want to call your cable supplier right now if you don't have OLN already... or show up with coffee and bagels at the house of the one buddy of yours who does. It's gonna be memorable.

  6. #6
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    For four years, no team sponsor except USPS had any hope of getting any exposure in the TdF. Now, with cracks in Armstrong, every team sees an opportunity to open up the tour and ensure that their sponsors get seen. The whole peloton won't be working against Armstrong, so much as they'll be working together for the sponsors.

  7. #7
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    Whatever. Jeez. You'd think someone would do a "bike racing 101" on the site, too.

    The gang-up-on-Lance thing can only work if Vinokourov and Ullrich don't care which of the two of them wins, and even then there's little gaurantee up in the mountains. There's not a huge amount of drafting possible at climbing speeds (hence Jan leading all the way up the climb and still finishing with Lance, for example, or Lance doing the same in years past). So, Lance might well be able to respond to attacks without help.

    Of course, it's not clear he really can respond to a strong attack tomorrow. But that's because he doesn't look strong, not because of some anticipated cooperation.

    On a related topic, on OLN, there's just _way_ too much talking all the time about the great "advantage" Lance has with his team in the mountains. More wasted breath from the announcers. Yes, Postal led Lance up the mountain Saturday, but they also led Ullrich. Some "advantage". The team might be useful in case someone attacks, then they could lead Lance back. But, by the time Ullrich did attack, all the teammates were gone. Today, Vinokourov attacked when there were no teammates in any shape to help, too. As is usally the case. So, no "advantage" there, either. And at the end of the stage, did anyone say "well, there wasn't really much advantage today after all"? No. In fact, we got to hear about what a "great job" Postal did. Sheesh. Just one more excuse to talk about how great Lance/Postal are.

    Of course, if it had been Lance instead of Ullrich climbing without teammates but still winning time, there'd be no end of talk about what a great champion Lance is because he can, wait for it, "go it alone".

    Lance holds time, he's doing great, he's smart, he's on his way to winning. Lance loses time, he's still doing great, he's smart, he's on his way to victory. Lance can't attack this year, he'd be out of yellow with no obvious way to get it back if it weren't for the team time trial, but he's still doing great, he's smart, he's on his way to victory. Man, if Lance were puking on the side of the road we'd hear Phil tell us how smart it is for Lance to get rid of all that excess weight. Then Carmichael would write a column telling us how Lance's vomit has a specific gravity much lower than other riders, and that Lance's awesomely powerful throat muscles help him recover from heaving far quicker than other riders.

    All right, that's enough...

  8. #8
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Merriwether
    There's not a huge amount of drafting possible at climbing speeds (hence Jan leading all the way up the climb and still finishing with Lance, for example, or Lance doing the same in years past).

    On a related topic, on OLN, there's just _way_ too much talking all the time about the great "advantage" Lance has with his team in the mountains. More wasted breath from the announcers. Yes, Postal led Lance up the mountain Saturday, but they also led Ullrich. Some "advantage". The team might be useful in case someone attacks, then they could lead Lance back. But, by the time Ullrich did attack, all the teammates were gone. Today, Vinokourov attacked when there were no teammates in any shape to help, too.

    Of course, if it had been Lance instead of Ullrich climbing without teammates but still winning time, there'd be no end of talk about what a great champion Lance is because he can, wait for it, "go it alone".
    I've selected a couple of statements to debate...

    Drafting? I dunno, have you watched the video feed? These guys don't climb at the same speeds you and I do. On all but the steepest pitches, they appear to be going plenty fast to benefit from a draft, even assuming no headwind. Notice where Lance rides when someone is pacing him.

    There's another benefit, by having a team, USPS gets to set the pace. And that's what they did, no? Vino did not drive the pace for miles, peeling all but the strongest. Did he ever take a turn at the front? (I didn't see it.) I'm guessing not. Then he launched. That was probably the first time he had his face in the wind all day. Maybe the pace wasn't quite fast enough... you can only do what you can do. Still, it was their choice to make. Also, having a team member pace you lends a significant psychological advantage, IMO.

    Finally, did you catch the shot on OLN where Jan soldiered back to the team car to get his own water bottles, Saturday? Given his descending skills, if the others had been pushing the pace, it could have put him in a world of hurt.

    Lessee. Prior to last year, when they hit the mountains, Lance was pretty much there alone. And all of a sudden, after a couple of mtn stages Bobby Julich and (who?) announce they're leaving USPS. Then the next year, same thing, Kevin Livingston and Tyler Hamilton are looking for new teams after a couple of mtn stages. And there was no end of talk about Lance going it alone.

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