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Old 07-15-08, 08:17 PM   #26
gapowermike
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I like the 'sorry, mate' Millar gave the DS after he was dropped on the Tourmalet. I hope that he gets refreshed for the Alps. VdV is certainly showing more than I thought he could.

CSC is looking like the team that is planning on making a serious statement this week. If they put in another performance like yesterdays there will be very few left.

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Old 07-15-08, 08:43 PM   #27
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Really, even if the team explodes in the next week, what Garmin and VdV have already accomplished bodes well for the future of American road cycling.

But I think he'll manage a top ten, which would be tremendous.
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Old 07-16-08, 04:00 AM   #28
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I now truely believe he has a chance at yellow.

...and the reason is???
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Old 07-16-08, 05:57 AM   #29
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Well he has shown that he can hang with the big contenders(atleast on two of the hardest climbs in the pyrenees after a hard week of riding), you can see every day he has more and more confidence in himself(so does his team). I said a chance at yellow, not wearing yellow when they reach paris.
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Old 07-16-08, 10:30 AM   #30
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Not too mention the fact that the stages between now and the Alps aren't particularly easy either. If the hilly stages of the first week were any hint, it will be a hard week of racing. I think what Voigt and Cancellara did on the way to Hautacam was just a preview of what we'll seed this week.
Which is why VDV doesn't need a team, he did just fine, as did Evans and Menchov, just following the wheels of the CSC boys to the bottom of the climb. At that point, all the teamates in the world aren't going to help you if you don't have the legs to stay with the big boys.

Valverde couldn't hang on the Tourmalet and that was his demise, having Perieirro drag him up both climbs may have limited his losses but he lost becuase he couldn't hang, not becuase of his team.

He will be able to hang with the top boys in Alps or not. But it won't be because his team isn't around him.

I think he is in as good of a position as possible, nobody gives him a chance, little is expected of him still. He did a great job of staying away from the media on the rest day. Vaughters has all but shut down communication. And after eleven days, he is in 3rd, 38 seconds back.

I will take some action on him in the top five vs being in 6 through ten, give me a PM and lets get a friendly wager going.
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Old 07-16-08, 10:48 AM   #31
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If he was very weak in the TT then having a team help make up lost time is important but if you can hang on the mountain stages then you either have to have the ability to attack there or get the time in the TT. Evans will play for the TT, VdV has been better in the TT than Schleck but not Evans or Menchov. CSC needs to get both dropped in the Alps to win and do so without dropping Schleck as well. At this point a Evans, Menchov, VdV podium looks possible but a week makes a big difference and one crash and everything is up in the air. That's what make this so much fun to watch.
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Old 07-16-08, 10:59 AM   #32
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Too bad Danielson can't ever get himself together. He would have been useful in the hills
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Old 07-16-08, 11:34 AM   #33
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Too bad Danielson can't ever get himself together. He would have been useful in the hills

Given his recenct performance at Cascade, unless Metro Volkswagon and California Giant get to the Tour, he probably wouldn't have been much help.

31 John Hunt (California Giant / Specialized)
32 Tom Danielson (Garmin/Chipotle p/b H3O) 10.04
33 Christian Helmig (Metro Volkswagen/ FCS Cycling) 10.14

Given his oft admitted inability to ride in the peleton, would you really want him protecting a top three rider in the tour anyhow?
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Old 07-16-08, 11:49 AM   #34
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For VV to podium in the end three things need to happen:
1. Hang in there with the big boys
2. Rock the TT
3. Luck

He needs to catch a break, whether it's Evans crashing or Menchov bonking, or whatever...
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Old 07-16-08, 12:17 PM   #35
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I believe Vaughters mentioned that a Top 10 for V (or was it Top 15?) would be a huge success. Top 5 would be a huge surprise IMHO; I just hope he bags a stage win.
It's a HUGE surprise he's in the third spot now. He did extremely well in the Pyrenees; it was great to see him right there with Evans, Sastre and Menchov. I feel these three were just interested in staying together; satisfied that the Pyrenees split them away from Valverde, Cunego, Pozzatto.

Things could change in the Alps but I'm rooting for Vandevelde all the way.


<predicition for the Tour is for Evans to nail the TT, do well in the Alps, win the GC>
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Old 07-16-08, 07:10 PM   #36
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For VV to podium in the end three things need to happen:
1. Hang in there with the big boys
2. Rock the TT
3. Luck


He needs to catch a break, whether it's Evans crashing or Menchov bonking, or whatever...
These are true for every GC hopeful, not just VdV. At this point his chances are as good as anyones.

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Old 07-16-08, 07:11 PM   #37
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Given his recenct performance at Cascade, unless Metro Volkswagon and California Giant get to the Tour, he probably wouldn't have been much help.

31 John Hunt (California Giant / Specialized)
32 Tom Danielson (Garmin/Chipotle p/b H3O) 10.04
33 Christian Helmig (Metro Volkswagen/ FCS Cycling) 10.14

Given his oft admitted inability to ride in the peleton, would you really want him protecting a top three rider in the tour anyhow?
He broke his tailbone during the race. He toughed it out as far as I'm concerned. Guy just has the worst luck.

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Old 07-16-08, 08:05 PM   #38
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I'd be over the moon to see VDV get on the podium! But Menchov has been my favorite since day #1. I keep waiting for some sign of weakness from him, a slight tailing off the back on a climb, tongue hanging out, etc. But no, he is as stoic and solid as Gibralter. I give him credit, he seems to always be playing a low key role, following, waiting. It's like the entire Tour media (and BF to an extent) has been running over dozens of scenarios about VDV, Cadel, Ricco, Schleck...and Menchov quietly soldiers on, not getting half the ink that others are getting. Surely he is going to pick his day to open up and show everyone what he's been planning for the past 2 weeks. He does have to make up nearly a minute on Cadel, he can't let it go until the TT for that. I wish I knew what was going on in his head! My ideal day would be Menchov and VDV in a 2 man break up Alp d'Huez.
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Old 07-16-08, 09:08 PM   #39
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It would be nice to see an attack in the mountains from of the top riders. I don't think Evans knows how so I am pulling for VDV. I don't know if I can stand to hear Cadel talk after the stage for one more day.
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Old 07-18-08, 11:48 AM   #40
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I'd be over the moon to see VDV get on the podium! But Menchov has been my favorite since day #1. I keep waiting for some sign of weakness from him, a slight tailing off the back on a climb, tongue hanging out, etc. But no, he is as stoic and solid as Gibralter. I give him credit, he seems to always be playing a low key role, following, waiting. It's like the entire Tour media (and BF to an extent) has been running over dozens of scenarios about VDV, Cadel, Ricco, Schleck...and Menchov quietly soldiers on, not getting half the ink that others are getting. Surely he is going to pick his day to open up and show everyone what he's been planning for the past 2 weeks. He does have to make up nearly a minute on Cadel, he can't let it go until the TT for that. I wish I knew what was going on in his head! My ideal day would be Menchov and VDV in a 2 man break up Alp d'Huez.
"He does have to make up nearly a minute on Cadel, he can't let it go until the TT for that."
I agree, I imagine he has to break out at some point, but how does he now, he's marked. Millar and Pate seem to be picking things up, this can only be good for VdV. It would be soooo sweet if VdV wins!!!
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