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  1. #1
    Photog Extraordinaire Crack'n'fail's Avatar
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    Riis says Basso stronger than Armstrong in ProCycling

    Article

    While i tend to agree with his assessment of Armstrong timing his exit well, I have just one little problem with him saying Basso is stronger in the hills. When, in a hilly/mountainous stage, has Basso crossed the line in front of LA?

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    On every Tour mountain stage this year and last, Armstrong either finished with Basso or well ahead of him. So I don't get what Riis is talking about.

  3. #3
    UareFASTjustNOTfastENOUGH MasterSezFaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crack'n'fail
    Article

    While i tend to agree with his assessment of Armstrong timing his exit well, I have just one little problem with him saying Basso is stronger in the hills. When, in a hilly/mountainous stage, has Basso crossed the line in front of LA?

    I think Riis is taking into consideration that Basso also road in the Giro d'Italia. It may or may not have made a difference but while LA was training Basso was racing so in therory, he just may be a stronger rider. I would like to see what would happen, and if it makes a diff., if Basso only trained for the Tour but these are only things we can speculate on.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MasterSezFaster
    I think Riis is taking into consideration that Basso also road in the Giro d'Italia. It may or may not have made a difference but while LA was training Basso was racing so in therory, he just may be a stronger rider. I would like to see what would happen, and if it makes a diff., if Basso only trained for the Tour but these are only things we can speculate on.
    Yeah, just speculation, and it shouldn't really be relevant to what Riis has to say.
    I guess Basso is a stronger rider than a soon to be 7 straight time Tour de France winner. Yeah that makes sense.

  5. #5
    Rennrad
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    This article is completely ludicrous and biased if any article ever was. I must assume that Riis did not actually watch the stage if he thought Basso was so much better. Of course Lance was riding on the defensive. He is not going to try and push out ahead of the other riders while he is sitting on a nearly 3 minute cushion. Then whenever Basso decided to take off Lance had no trouble whatsoever catching him and staying with him. Lance seemed to be completely at ease and had no need in crossing the line before Basso because it would have served no good purpose. I think Riis needs to go shove his head up Basso's ass a little more.
    .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crack'n'fail
    Article

    While i tend to agree with his assessment of Armstrong timing his exit well, I have just one little problem with him saying Basso is stronger in the hills. When, in a hilly/mountainous stage, has Basso crossed the line in front of LA?
    Riis is trying to build Basso's confidence, he looks to him to win the tour next year. Taking that into account, it makes perfect sense to say what he did. You certainly wouldn't expect him to say Basso is second rate when compared to Lance did you?

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    For years, when Lance has been asked, who is the strongest rider in the TdF, he answers "Ullrich". But, Ullrich never beats Lance. So, Lance seems to be referring to Ullrich's physical power, but not to how well Ullrich exploits that power. Likewise, Riis may be referring to Basso's physical power, but not to how well Basso has exploited that power.

    It is not safe to say certain things in the Forums. If someone says Basso COULD have challenged Lance more in the mountain stages IF Basso had the self-confidence to do so, he gets called names, cursed, and people suggest he be banned from the Forums. So, I won't be the guy suggesting Basso COULD have done more in the mountains this year. Maybe Riis can be that guy. Ban Riis from the Forums.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Doid23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by serotta
    Riis is trying to build Basso's confidence, he looks to him to win the tour next year. Taking that into account, it makes perfect sense to say what he did. You certainly wouldn't expect him to say Basso is second rate when compared to Lance did you?
    I agree, but there are much better ways to do that, without having people question your credibility. It's such a ridiculous and illogical statement, that I have to believe that even Basso thinks Riis is just blowing smoke up his butt.

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    Senior Member SunSwingsLow's Avatar
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    “Armstrong had to ride on the defensive,” Riis told journalists at the Aérodrome de Mende this evening, a few hundred metres from where Basso had cruised home in 14th position. “We had planned to try something this morning. Ivan executed the plan to the letter. He may not have dropped Lance but I think that he is the strongest man on the hills now. Once, he might have hesitated to attack on that finale, but not now. When you feel as strong as Ivan does at the moment, confidence comes naturally.
    Ok so I get the whole confidence thing, but Lance on the defensive? Well, duh, all he has to do is mark your man because he already put lots of time on him. Why would Lance need to be on the offense. And if was "hurt" by your riders acceleration then why the hell does he cross the line ahead of him. Lance didnt need to put an attack on him, so you take a passive Lance and say that Basso is stronger based on that evidence. When did Lance ever even look pushed.

    As far as confidence goes. Im confident Basso will finish 2nd to a stronger Armstrong.
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    My read is that Riis was building Basso's confidence. I haven't seen any evidence that Basso could leave Lance on the hills, but I also haven't seen too much evidence that Lance could drop Basso either. The only thing I can think of is the first mountain stage where Basso struggled.

    After watching yesterday's stage, I got the distinct impression that Lance could've turned the screw another notch on the last climb, but only did what he had to do to protect his lead. That's just my impression from watching, however. Lance looked relaxed and comfortable on the last climb and I suspect he could've attacked if he saw the need. I am not sure if Basso could've matched him if he'd chosen to go.

    Anyway, I can understand the motivation for Riis to say the things he did. I'm just not sure their based in reality. From everything I've seen at the Tour this year, Lance could come back and claim number 8 next year if he had the desire.

  11. #11
    Senior Member phinney's Avatar
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    Riis wants Basso to stay with CSC. As the tour favorite for next year Basso has some serious bargaining power.

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    Senior Member SunSwingsLow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phinney
    Riis wants Basso to stay with CSC. As the tour favorite for next year Basso has some serious bargaining power.
    I thought he already signed. Like 4 days ago.
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    Senior Member rule's Avatar
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    Ha

    Haha

    Hahahahahahahahahaha



    Err, sorry.

  14. #14
    Photog Extraordinaire Crack'n'fail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phinney
    Riis wants Basso to stay with CSC. As the tour favorite for next year Basso has some serious bargaining power.
    Basso has already extended his contract: Story

    Yeah, I figured he was just trying to boost Basso's confidence, but it still seems a little odd. Basso himself said he tried all he could and couldn't shake Lance. Do you think he's that succeptible to psychology to actually buy in to what Riis is saying?

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    Maybe Riis is just taking a page from what Bruyneel originally did with Lance. IIRC, it was Bruyneel who first said Lance could win the Tour, at a time when Lance was thinking of just winning a stage, not the whole Tour.

    We may think it's ludicrous, but the DS needs to show confidence in his lead rider (maybe more than the rider has in himself, sometimes).

    It's pretty clear w/o Lance, Basso is the favorite for '06 - will Basso skip the Giro next year to peak for the Tour, or risk being tired for the Tour after the Giro?

  16. #16
    Forum Admin lotek's Avatar
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    Basso is in reality strong, and he may be stronger than Lance
    on climbs. The real gist of the article for me was the changing of the
    guard, LA is older and his dominance is waning. Basso is the true
    heir and up and coming tour winner (barring unforseen circumstance
    I expect him in Yellow in Paris next year).
    I think Basso unsupported in a long mountain stage would be
    a match for Lance (also unsupported).
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  17. #17
    Pure Joy Rider
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    I think there probably is a psychological motivation for Riis' statements, but they are still silly as far as public proclamations.

    Basso, in two years, has never beaten Lance in any significant way (yes, by two yards once last year, but they came in together) when it has always been in his interest to beat him. Armstrong has managed to consistently position himself well enough, timewise, that he hasn't needed to beat Basso in the mtns at any time. The only conclusion that I can logically reach is one of two parts- Armstrong is either stronger, or (rather unlikely) equally as strong as Basso. If Basso could have beaten Lance at any particular time, what is he waiting for? In pro sports, unmet potential is usually due to one or more of 3 things- lack of professionalism, lack of opportunity, or prevalence of injury. Basso doesn't have opportunity or injury to fall back on, if in fact he does have that extra bit of talent/potential that we haven't seen.

    As far as Armstrong being on the defensive, per Riis' comment, there is nothing 'forced' about it. Disco know how to win, and minimize the chance of failure. Choosing to be on the defensive when you've worked to gain a deserved advantage is, well, a luxury. Doesn't Riis wish he had that luxury...

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    Quote Originally Posted by 97 Teran
    In pro sports, unmet potential is usually due to one or more of 3 things- lack of professionalism, lack of opportunity, or prevalence of injury. Basso doesn't have opportunity or injury to fall back on, if in fact he does have that extra bit of talent/potential that we haven't seen.
    Indeed. And I really doubt Basso has done anything lower than %100 effort into being as strong as possible, in training and the race. He seems too consistant, that I'd be very suprised to not see him on the podium next year. (He's not much of a crasher, is he?)

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    Quote Originally Posted by lotek
    ...LA is older and his dominance is waning.
    It is waning because there is only 2 days left in his final Tour.

    That said, I am really looking forward to next years Tour.

  20. #20
    Senior Member eblaska's Avatar
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    Has Basso won the tour? no.
    It's all about commuting on the single speed & being nerdy.

    My Website ;x

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    Roger Bannister was the first man in history to run a mile in under four minutes. He has written about his quest to break four minutes. He said that the HARDEST thing was truly understanding that it could be done, even though no human had ever done so. Most runners thought it was impossible, and so never even attempted to run that fast.

    Within just days of Bannister breaking four minutes, another runner did so. The purely imaginary barrier had evaporated. Eventually, even high school students were running the mile in under four minutes. These kids had seen people run faster than four minutes. So, they went out and did it.

    The biggest barrier to Basso beating Armstrong in the mountains has been Basso's belief that it can't be done. How do I know that? Because Basso said so, after Stage 15. Basso announced that the Tour was over, that "Lance was too strong". So, BEFORE riding stages 16, stage 17, stage 18...Basso quits the Tour. It wasn't me who announced Basso had given up on beating Lance. It was Basso.

    Some of the dominant riders in Tour history have been accused of arrogance and egotism (which they thought of as "self-confidence"). Basso might need a few ounces of that stuff.
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 07-22-05 at 02:58 PM.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Doid23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    The biggest barrier to Basso beating Armstrong in the mountains has been Basso's belief that it can't be done. .
    How would you possibly know that? How could you possibly assess what his physical limitations or potential is? What facts/data/ information/ observations do you have to support that kind of absolute statement? Just because Roger Bannister broke the 4 minute mile, then someone repeated the feat, doesn't mean that's true here.

    What if both of them believed that they could beat each other? Would it be a tie? Or would Lance win because he is in better shape, is a better rider, is more genetically gifted, is more prepared, etc.?

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    I think we can all agree that at least part of winning the Tour is mental. If you get inside a guy's head and make him think you're the stronger rider, you probably will be the stronger rider.

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    Isn't it amazing how the left behinds always spout off at the mouth. Maybe Riis will have a winner next year but not this year

  25. #25
    Senior Member Doid23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kehaar
    I think we can all agree that at least part of winning the Tour is mental. If you get inside a guy's head and make him think you're the stronger rider, you probably will be the stronger rider.
    I absolutely agree with that statement, in general. I think that besides natural ability and hard work, the main thing that separates Armstrong, Jordan, Bird,etc. is their focus, determination, discipline, and will to win. What I contest is absolute statements that say Basso can't beat Armstrong because he doesn't think he can. Saying at the end of a stage "I tried to drop Armstrong, but he is too strong" doesn't mean he doesn't think he can beat him, it means that he tried his utmost and couldn't drop him. I'm not saying that it's not a possibility. Maybe he does think he can beat Armstrong, or maybe he doesn't. But making an absolute statement is impossible, short of being Riis, his psychologist, wife, or Basso himself. That's my point. Hey, Vino's absolutely believed that he could beat Armstrong, so just believing doesn't cut it.

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