"The 33"-Road Bike Racing - Ullrich and CSC
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P. B. Walker
07-23-03, 04:44 PM
Has anyone wondered what a terror Ullrich would have been to Lance had he made what most people would have considered the smart move and joined CSC, instead of Coast/Bianchi? He'd have Tyler and Sastre as his mountain men, and possibly a better team for the TTT (hard to tell going by CSC's results in the TTT since they had Tyler just 3 stages after he fractured his collar bone).
Ullrich, Tyler, and Sastre working together, plus throw in Vino as a friend of Ullrich, plus Beloki in the Alps... and let's not forget the Euskaltel-Euskadi teammates, Zubeldia and Mayo. This would be a totally different race I think.
Course, we don't know if Tyler would have played second fiddle to Ullrich, but I guess he would have had to. And if CSC played it right, they could have picked up Zulle when he left Coast. If there ever was a team to beat Lance, I think that would be it.
Think Ullrich is kicking himself now after seeing Tyler's performance today in Stage 16?
07-23-03, 07:29 PM
No I don't and I don't agree that going to CSC would have worked out better for anyone on this tour even in hindsight.
Hamilton deserves to be a GC contender in his own right. He'd be podium material already if he hadn't gone slam. Having more than one team leader is not necessarily a good thing if they are both having a good tour.
Ullrich is doing just fine - it makes complete sense to me - it's the bike !!
Very true- I think when Hamilton left and went off for himself, it was kinda obvious he was looking to be a team leader, not another domestique- otherwise, he would have just stuck it out with Lance! Ullrich can stay put where he is and start building up his team and let Hamilton stick it out with CSC. We could have 3 really strong teams (yes, I know there are other strong teams too!!!) and a much more exciting Tour next year.
Regardless of what happens, I really want to see everyone come back next year and race- it would be yet another great Tour.
I think working with Riis would have been great for Ullrich, but I agree it would have been tough with Tyler there as GC contender. Ullrich is ideally placed at Bianchi, where he is the main GC contender for the Tour, and Casero for the Vuelta. Probably they'll do the Vuelta and Ullrich will work for Casero. And while there are not that many big stars on that team aside from the two grand-tour winners, I think they'll start to attract a few more in the future. In the meantime, they seem solid enough working with Ullrich and have done a great job. It's his first grand tour in 2 years and no one was even expecting better than top ten. Ullrich needed a team focused on him and Bianchi seems to be working out very well. We'll see how they do in grand tours in the future.
P. B. Walker
07-23-03, 08:50 PM
I'm not saying that Bianchi isn't a great team for Ullrich or that Tyler isn't a great GC contender at CSC.
It was more a "what might have been" had Ullrich taken Riis up on his offer to join CSC.
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