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View Poll Results: How did Armstrong beat Contador in Stage 3?
Just Lucky 16 24.62%
Stronger Rider 4 6.15%
Better Strategy 44 67.69%
Teamates favoured him over Contador 0 0%
Team Director ordered it 1 1.54%
Voters: 65. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-08-09, 09:06 AM   #1
cooker
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Why is/was Armstrong ahead of Contador? (no spoilers)

After 4 stages, Armstrong was or is 19 seconds ahead of his teammate Contador. Obviously this is because he did a very good initial time trial to stay within striking distance, and then in stage 3 he was in the front part of the peloton when it split, and Contador was caught in the back part.

So how did Armstrong pull off that stage 3 coup:

Just lucky?

Stronger riding?

Better strategy?

Teammates favour him over Contador?

Team Director ordered it for strategic/advertising purposes?
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Old 07-08-09, 09:18 AM   #2
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Little bit of luck, and the experience to know that the conditions were right for an echelon to form splitting the pack.

There were a couple of times in Armstrong's 7 year run where some of his opponents lost signiifcant time being caught on the wrong side of a split on a flat stage with strong crosswinds. IIRC it was Mayo who lost big time one year in a similar situation.

At this stage in their careers, I think Arsmtrong is a bit more savvy than Contador.
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Old 07-08-09, 09:20 AM   #3
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Better strategy?

?
Pretty much, was in a better position and chose not to waste the opportunity and sit up and wait for AC.

In the TDF you do not pass on any situation that gains your team an edge if you are a possible GC contender. Remember back when Ullrich floundered and Vinokourav ended up on the podium. Same type situation.

LA is not gonna wait for anyone and I don't blame him. A 7 tiume tour champ has no reason to lollygag around.
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Old 07-08-09, 09:21 AM   #4
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I picked "Better Strategy" as he was intentionally in the right place at the right time.

There is some luck involved, for example, if he had dropped back for a minute to get to the team car at just the wrong moment... But the strategy of staying at the front of the peleton seems to be key to his current GC position.
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Old 07-08-09, 12:38 PM   #5
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He knows Hincapie like he knows himself, and he figured what George was up to and followed.
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Old 07-08-09, 04:26 PM   #6
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Yea, I think better strategy and a little luck.
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Old 07-08-09, 04:32 PM   #7
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read my "theories" in the stage 3 thread.
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Old 07-08-09, 04:57 PM   #8
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He's always talked about being nervous about every stage. Always potential risks. He keeps an eye out. Passage du Gois immediately came to mind when watching this stage. (the early stage in 1999, where a crash on a narrow tidal passage gave him minutes over the favorites)
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Old 07-08-09, 04:59 PM   #9
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None of the above.

And why did you call it a coup? For all of the hype, LA is not considered a GC contender by any other team. There was no reason to reel him in, they let him go. The other sprinter teams effed up when they let Cavendish go. The GC teams didn't need to waste any energy.
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Old 07-08-09, 05:01 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
Little bit of luck, and the experience to know that the conditions were right for an echelon to form splitting the pack.

There were a couple of times in Armstrong's 7 year run where some of his opponents lost signiifcant time being caught on the wrong side of a split on a flat stage with strong crosswinds. IIRC it was Mayo who lost big time one year in a similar situation.

At this stage in their careers, I think Arsmtrong is a bit more savvy than Contador.
i think LA is a lot savvier than AC but he wasn't always that way. armstrong learned the hard way that the strongest guy doesn't always win (e.g., boogerd, amstel gold)

LA saw the situation developing and moved to the front...so did cancellara.

now....the only question i have is why didn't armstrong alert AC, levi & kloden? and i think it's because he believes he can win the race and he also thinks the team leadership needs to be earned. you snooze you lose.

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Old 07-08-09, 06:20 PM   #11
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None of the above.

And why did you call it a coup?
Do you think it is no big deal for Contador (or Bruyneel) that Lance is in this position?
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Old 07-08-09, 07:02 PM   #12
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None of the above: He was paying attention, AC wasn't, stuff happens.
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Old 07-08-09, 07:11 PM   #13
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He's always talked about being nervous about every stage. Always potential risks. He keeps an eye out. Passage du Gois immediately came to mind when watching this stage. (the early stage in 1999, where a crash on a narrow tidal passage gave him minutes over the favorites)
Good call, I was going to mention this myself but you beat me too it. Classic example of being alert (and in the right place) when it counted!
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Old 07-08-09, 07:11 PM   #14
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None of the above: He was paying attention, AC wasn't, stuff happens.
That was option 3.
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Old 07-08-09, 07:40 PM   #15
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That was option 3.
no, it wasn't. strategy <> tactics <> luck
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Old 07-08-09, 07:45 PM   #16
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Do you think it is no big deal for Contador (or Bruyneel) that Lance is in this position?
Shouldn't be. It's early, the race will be won and lost in the mountains. AC figures he's stronger than Lance there...and JB would probably prefer Lance win, if he could pull it off, considering the team is dumping both of them later this year.
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