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Thread: What if....?

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    What if....?

    What if beloki was still in the mix? Do you think him and armstrong would have gotten away on the climbs? When beloki and hamilton got hurt I was thinking, there goes a big chunk of the competition. But this tour is hardly a cakewalk! This is another epic duel between the german and the texan. Whats with simoni too by the way? Won yesterdays stagte but today finish something like 25 minutes behind? Is he just not in good form or did he shoot his mouth off too much with not enough to back it up? Just food for thought
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    I was really suprised with Simoni's stage win.

    I noticed he didn't even finish with the peleton on one of the flat stages.
    Hes' like over an hour behind

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    Just think if Hamilton didn't get hurt and Beloki wasn't out. Lance would have his hands full. I still think he could do it though.
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    Good question, I think Beloki, Ullrich and Hamilton would have been Armstrong's major competition. In all seriousness, Ullrich is really the only contender in this group currently, as Hamilton is injured and Beloki is obviously not in contention.
    In regard to Simoni, I think brent has summed it up. It was a surprise.
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    Originally posted by TriDevil
    What if beloki was still in the mix?
    I know one man who is asking that question over and over and over again in his head ... Beloki. It's a shame that he's out of the mix, and hurt.

    Perhaps next year's race will be even better with Beloki riding? Although, I don't think MY heart can take this year, let alone next year!

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    How long is it going to take for beloki to heal up? Think simoni will try to focus more on the tour next year? Any think lance is going to try for 6 next year? How bout if lance stands down this year, where there be a dogfight next year? I think the first year lance doesnt ride will be a really great tour in terms of competition. Not that this year isnt!
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    There is no reason to think that he wouldn't try for six. Indourain did as did many of the other 5 time winners. But if everyone is healthy, it could be an even better race than this year's has been so far.
    ljbike

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    Lance said in an interview the other day that if he lost this year he would be back next year to try and win it again so I would hope that if he wins this year he will be back as well. This is the best tour I have seen in a long time maybe ever.
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    I wonder if lance will really try again. HE's got his five, and this one was the hardest yet. It'll be harder next year. Let's face it, you're not going to be the same doing your fifth as you were doing the first. Think of the toll it takes, the stress, etc. FIve he'll get, most likely but I don't think six will be that easy.

    As for Beloki, he would still have been a factor in the mountains but no way would he have been able to keep up with armstrong and Ullrich on the TT last week. He would have lost time there and he would have had to get it back in the mountains.
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    Originally posted by wabbit
    I wonder if lance will really try again. HE's got his five, and this one was the hardest yet. It'll be harder next year. Let's face it, you're not going to be the same doing your fifth as you were doing the first. Think of the toll it takes, the stress, etc. FIve he'll get, most likely but I don't think six will be that easy.
    Yep the competition is probably catching on him. He said so himself that he knows he can't get any stronger (he knows his ability is naturally dropping with age).

    A couple days ago I was worried that I wasn't going to see him win a race again! I was guessing that he would finish 2nd in the tour with no stage win and retire.

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    I disagree that he cannot get stronger. But will he need to? If he is on form it seems noone is strong enough to do anything with him.

    I can't beleive Ulrich is still pushing big gears on the climbs after having his a$$ handed to him in 2001 by Sir. Spinsalot Lance..
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    Originally posted by SamDaBikinMan
    I disagree that he cannot get stronger. But will he need to?
    Thats the thing. I think he is never going to be as strong as he was (passed the age peak), but even then, that doesn't mean he wont be stronger than everyone else in the field at the right time.

    But I think 10 years is a pretty good time span to be among the most successful cyclists!

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    Originally posted by wabbit
    ....... HE's got his five, and this one was the hardest yet. It'll be harder next year. ...........
    It's over!!??? I had no idea it was over yet!!!

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    Brent, Simoni got really burned and put way back in the TTT, Saeco did a terrible TTT and that put him way down on the GC, he then had a bad day or two in the mountains in the following day's and that's why he is soo far back.....It dosen't really surprize me, since he did soo well and won the Giro, I think at least for me it shows that with the level that Pro cycling is at today, it's next to impossible to be competitive in 2 of the the grand tours these day's..You can really only concentrate on 1 each year, if you're looking at the GC competition..


    Benjamin

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    Originally posted by caadman
    Brent, Simoni got really burned and put way back in the TTT, Saeco did a terrible TTT and that put him way down on the GC, he then had a bad day or two in the mountains in the following day's and that's why he is soo far back.....It dosen't really surprize me, since he did soo well and won the Giro, I think at least for me it shows that with the level that Pro cycling is at today, it's next to impossible to be competitive in 2 of the the grand tours these day's..You can really only concentrate on 1 each year, if you're looking at the GC competition..
    But he wasn't anywhere NEAR being competetive. In stage 9, for example, he finished in the group of the sprinters, over a half hour behind! I guess since he knew GC was out of the question, he figured it would be best to take it as easy as possible to get through the stages and be ready for one potential oppurtunity (the break)
    Remember how well Heras did in the tour last year, then how well he did in the Vuelta? I doubt the sport changed that much in one year.

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    IMHO.
    Simoni over committed in doing the Giro and Tour in the one year. I think we may see a better prepared and quieter Simoni in 2004.
    Beloki (hoping he makes a full recovery) will need to learn not to panic. It looked like that was the third corner he locked up on in a row. He ignored his bike and paid. He can improve his all round approach and will be better for the knowledge that others will attack.
    Mayo and Vino will need to learn to TT better.
    Ullrich may yet still win but boy is he back even if he doesn't.
    Armstrong - whatever - he is a champion and will either go out on top or keep going until there is a new king - both outcomes are right.
    But the big GC story for me is Botero - world TT champion and winner of a mountain stage last year and then gonski big time this year. Will Team Telekom let him hang around Columbia until April/May next year to get ready - me thinks not.
    If there has been one disappoinment this year it has been the lack of competition for the polka dot jersey - however well done Virenque.
    Now it's time to bring back the war for the green.
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    has everyone forgotten about levi leipeimer? he could have been a real threat this year, too. imagine how full lance's hands would have been having to hold off leipheimer, a 100% hamilton, beloki, ullrich, vinokourov, mayo, and zubeldia. crazy, eh?

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    with the odds stacked against him, armstrong's opposition took themselves out of contention till tehre was only one, Ullrich.

    To race for GC first you have to finish. Leipheimer, Beloki, Simoni all took themselves out, either via over optimistic ambitions like riding too many races or the pressure of finishing high up every day.

    What if?........... is a bad question. Speculation does nothing but serve to diminish the accomplishment sof those who are creating the history.
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    I didnt mean to make it seem as if lance now has an easy tour and has no competition. I simply was wondering what kind of race would be going on as opposed to the one going on now.
    "Training is what Iím doing while my opponents are sleeping in."- Bill Robertson

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