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  1. #1
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    Lance holding back in 2003 TDF

    A buddy of mine believes that Mr. Armstrong was holding back this year at the TDF. Wanting to make the race more competitive and dramatic (baring those unfakeable crashes). Thinking he didn't go out and stamp his authority on the climbs like years past. So making the race not such a Mike Tyson 15 second knock out fight. I must say, it was quite dramatic, though I am not too sure about this theory of my friend. Just curious to know what others think...

  2. #2
    Crank Crushing Redneck SamDaBikinMan's Avatar
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    UMMM Lance was in his worst form since he started winning the race in 1999.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Geezer Member Grampy™'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stellar One
    A buddy of mine believes that Mr. Armstrong was holding back this year at the TDF...
    I really believe your buddy is about as wrong as a person can be.

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    lance faking

    I do not think Lance was faking, I think that he showed some weakness in the beggining and the others were no longer defeated in their minds. They were no longer racing for second place. He is going to have a hard time this next year because the others will be training for first place. I am really looking foward to the Lance, Ulrich, and Hamilton battle in 2004.

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    he may have been lazyer and more careless in prep and such, but on the bike, in the stages, there is no doubt he was giving his all.
    Through the first half of the race, it almost seemed like Armstrong had the attitude like 'ahh who cares about this. This is boring.'

  6. #6
    Marathon Cyclist MediaCreations's Avatar
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    Lance knows that it doesn't take much for fortunes to change during the tour. I'm sure that if he could have got further ahead without causing himself too much damage he would have.

  7. #7
    Senior Member roadwarrior's Avatar
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    Lance gets paid about $20 million a year. Most of this comes from sponsors who pay him to win the Tour.

    He was recently in Indianapolis. He said that this past race was the least fun he'd had...starting out with stomach flu he picked up from his kids (most folks do not know how close he was to not even starting the Tour this year) to tendonitis in his hip from a stupid shoe change and subsequent cleat mounting problems, to not getting enough to drink where he almost decided to quit during the time trial, to his still being injured from the Dauphine crash, to further getting injured in the stage one crash which was worse than stated...I heard it from the horse's mouth...he was sick and injured and they did a lot of stupid things and it all culiminated in what you saw..

    And why would he put his whole team at risk doing what your friend suggests?

    He went on to say that it will not happen again.

    What's funny is that despite all this, they still could not beat him.

    His comments culminated in this, and I am paraphrasing..."I don't know if it's because I am getting older or everyone else is getting a lot better, but that was no fun. While I cannot guarantee I can win a sixth, I will guarantee that none of the stuff you saw this year will happen next year. I guarantee it."

    And he seemed really pissed off when he said it...and a pissed off Lance is not good news for everyone else.
    "Nothing is so typical of middling minds than to harp on the intellectual deficiencies of the slightly less smart, but considerably more successful."
    Bret Stephens, WSJ

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    A pissed off lance is good news for the race, as its a good sign that he will be back and better organized

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    bac
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    Yeah - that's it ... that's the ticket ... he was faking it.

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    Senior Member keithnordstrom's Avatar
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    lol i don't think you'll find a single supporter for that theory.

    lance was just not in the form he needed to be to dominate the race. part of that was the fact he was not as well prepared (due to injury, etc.) and part to the fact that everybody else in the tour has begun training specifically for it as well.

    whether lance will find an edge for next year or not is anybody's guess, but people like beloki, hamilton, and ullrich will be tough competition again; as will mayo and zubeldia and a few others.

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    We recently finished studying Lance in my Sports Psychology class. Our conclusion was that the TDF has become boring for him. He is no longer in the zone or flow because it has because too easy. His skill level is too high for the challenge that the TDF holds. So basically he is bored and has started to show less signs of excitement like for first few years that he won the race.

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    Quote Originally Posted by edwin
    the others will be training for first place.
    you mean to say in the past they've been training to take second or third place? that's just silly.
    i ride bikes.

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    lance faking

    When they were training they did not have in their mind that the were going to beat Lance. There was a doubt, after seeing his domination of the four before that there had to be a doubt. I believe they were hoping they were going to be able to win, and trained for a win, but somewhere in their mind they did not believe it.

    I also agree that the other riders are training specifically for the Tour so they were that much better.

  14. #14
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    By the way, the buddy of mine that came up with this "Holding Back Theory" also tends to see a lot of Black helicopters and may have watched one too many "X Files" episodes.

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    FLY02:

    Let us all hope your conclusion is correct.

    Perhaps Lance will grow bored and decide to fill out his palmares in a true champions fashion. Bernard Hinault is the last rider to do this. I hope he won't be the last.

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    Lance doesn't think he was holding back. Read the last chapter in his new book (which isn't much of a read, BTW) and get his personal insight in the '03 TdF. Basically the only good part of his new book. He needs to find another 'ghost-writer' for his next book. This one stinks.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by edwin
    When they were training they did not have in their mind that the were going to beat Lance. There was a doubt, after seeing his domination of the four before that there had to be a doubt. I believe they were hoping they were going to be able to win, and trained for a win, but somewhere in their mind they did not believe it.

    if one doesn't believe they can win they probably wont. i still can't believe anyone in a position to lead a team in the tour would be doing anything but racing to win.
    i ride bikes.

  18. #18
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    I was of the opinion that he was sandbagging, too. Then about 1/3 through the tour I got OLN and saw the video of his ITT. That was not acting, he worked hard for this years victory, and next year will be harder.

    I partially agree with FLY02's assessment. I'd expect there'd be an awful lot of mental baggage from riding a TdF... mostly related to the self-inflicted amount of physical pain. Year after year it would accumulate.

  19. #19
    Bring the tech Ajay213's Avatar
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    Naw, the 2004 TdF either one of two things will happen (IMO anyways). Lance will lose as the competition will be better prepared and will focus more on winning the Tour. Or Lance will go out there and lay some serious wood down and win by another large margin like in years past.

    I say this because he is either going to come to the tour trained and prepped like never before, knowing how close this year was he's not going to take risks or compromise himself. Or he will walk into the tour like he did this year and the competition will eat him up, chew him up and spit him out the back of the pack.

    Andrew

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    I think it will be very unpredictable. I sense something suprising may really shake up the GC before the mountains come. (in 2004)

  21. #21
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    I agree with Ajay, Lance will either win, or lose.

  22. #22
    Senior Member roadwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajay213
    Naw, the 2004 TdF either one of two things will happen (IMO anyways). Lance will lose as the competition will be better prepared and will focus more on winning the Tour. Or Lance will go out there and lay some serious wood down and win by another large margin like in years past.

    I say this because he is either going to come to the tour trained and prepped like never before, knowing how close this year was he's not going to take risks or compromise himself. Or he will walk into the tour like he did this year and the competition will eat him up, chew him up and spit him out the back of the pack.

    Andrew

    Based on his comments about a month ago when I saw him here in Indianapolis during a stopover from the Tour of Hope, he will be trained and prepped..he will not lose due to dumb stuff...

    If they beat him, it will be because someone rode a better race.

    He wants the sixth. He also said that people have generally felt that if he wins again, he'll retire. Not so he said.
    "Nothing is so typical of middling minds than to harp on the intellectual deficiencies of the slightly less smart, but considerably more successful."
    Bret Stephens, WSJ

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by MKRG
    I agree with Ajay, Lance will either win, or lose.
    Fascinating... you don't think he'll end with a perfect tie with beloki and ullrich and they'll all wander off the podium singing together? You and Ajay are going out on a limb there...

  24. #24
    Lance Hater Laggard's Avatar
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    Is a tie possible? I never even thought about that before.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laggard
    Is a tie possible? I never even thought about that before.
    well they use the hundreths (or is it thousandths? (I cant spell...)) of seconds from the TT's to do final judging of the riders overall GC time, in that case. If THAT turns out to be a tie... who knows.

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