Go Back  Bike Forums > The Racer's Forum > "The 33"-Road Bike Racing
Reload this Page >

Question about ProTour Grand Tour Final Stages

"The 33"-Road Bike Racing We set this forum up for our members to discuss their experiences in either pro or amateur racing, whether they are the big races, or even the small backyard races. Don't forget to update all the members with your own race results.

Question about ProTour Grand Tour Final Stages

Old 06-03-07, 07:24 AM
  #1  
donrhummy
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
donrhummy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,481
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Question about ProTour Grand Tour Final Stages

Why do they dislike having final stages that can change the race placings? Pretty much everyone on here thinks the 1989 TDF finish was one of the most exciting and amazing ever. I've never heard of anyone who didn't think the final placings coming down to the final day was super exciting. So why have none of them ever done it again? Why is the final stage almost a "waste stage"?
donrhummy is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 08:58 AM
  #2  
Snicklefritz
Senior Member
 
Snicklefritz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: In the middle of horse country, in The Garden State
Posts: 3,159
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I don't know for sure but maybe they like the ceremonial aspect of it.

All I know for sure is that you win the prize for #posts this week
Snicklefritz is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 09:01 AM
  #3  
GuitarWizard
Used to be a climber..
 
GuitarWizard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Santa Clarita, CA
Posts: 6,844

Bikes: Ridley Fenix SL, Niner RLT-9 Steel, Diamond Back Haanjo Trail, Fairdale Goodship

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Because the 1989 TdF was essentially neck-and-neck with Fignon and Lemond. Most times, by the end of a long stage race, the winner is usually several minutes up on the next closest guy, and it would be extremely hard/impossible to make up, unless something went very wrong for the guy in 1st place.

I'm sure if Ulrich was say, 20 seconds down on Lance coming into the final stage of a TdF, he would be trying to win.
GuitarWizard is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 09:06 AM
  #4  
Jonathan Drake
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 326
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by GuitarWizard
Because the 1989 TdF was essentially neck-and-neck with Fignon and Lemond. Most times, by the end of a long stage race, the winner is usually several minutes up on the next closest guy, and it would be extremely hard/impossible to make up, unless something went very wrong for the guy in 1st place.

I'm sure if Ulrich was say, 20 seconds down on Lance coming into the final stage of a TdF, he would be trying to win.
I believe that Ullrich said he would do exactly that, before the final Time Trial in the 2003 Tour de France. Unfortunately for him he crashed in the Time Trial, and lost his chance to gain time on Armstrong.
Jonathan Drake is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 09:14 AM
  #5  
GuitarWizard
Used to be a climber..
 
GuitarWizard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Santa Clarita, CA
Posts: 6,844

Bikes: Ridley Fenix SL, Niner RLT-9 Steel, Diamond Back Haanjo Trail, Fairdale Goodship

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Is that the one where Lance had a bout of dehydration?
GuitarWizard is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 09:16 AM
  #6  
Jonathan Drake
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 326
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by GuitarWizard
Is that the one where Lance had a bout of dehydration?
Amongst other things, yes. The one where it wasn't sure that he'd win until the final Time Trial. The most exciting of his Tour victories.
Jonathan Drake is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 01:34 PM
  #7  
same time
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Washington DC
Posts: 962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Don't forget, grand tours are just as much about tourism as they are about bike racing. Having the final stage roll up main street in Paris or Milan is a great show, but a logistical headache. The spectacle draws tourists and ensures publicity. Blocking off the city for a time trial, which takes all day, isn't necessary - you'd want the race to be as quick and predictable as possible.

From an event planner's point of view, the mountain stages are for the hard-core fans who travel to ski resorts in summertime just to see the race, and the ceremonial city-finish stage is to bring the race (and sponsors) to people who've never seen a bike race before.
same time is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 05:24 PM
  #8  
ed073
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 6,411

Bikes: Scapin EOS7 sloping, 10v Record, Ksyriums

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
there are three weeks to win a GT.

The final stage is a celebration.
ed073 is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 07:12 PM
  #9  
EventServices
Announcer
 
EventServices's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Detroit's North Side.
Posts: 5,084

Bikes: Many

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18 Post(s)
What annoys me is that the not-Grand Tours also see no real racing on the last day.

Georgia and California are the best examples I can offer. When Floyd was 4 seconds behind Tom D in 2005, they just rode into Alpharetta with nary an attack as if it's some unwritten code. And maybe it IS an unwritten code in the Grant Tours. But in the 6 day specials, that's boring.
EventServices is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 08:38 PM
  #10  
roadgator
raodmaster shaman
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: G-ville
Posts: 1,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Jonathan Drake
Amongst other things, yes. The one where it wasn't sure that he'd win until the final Time Trial. The most exciting of his Tour victories.
close. it was the same tour, but the dehydration episode was in the first TT (which ulrich dominated). the last TT was the one in the rain, where ulrich crashed. lance didnt win that stage, but rode cautiously to preserve the yellow jersey.

Most grand tours seem to have a climactic TT as the second to last stage, which basically has the same potential for drama as the '89 tour since the GC is traditionally not contested on the last day.
roadgator is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 09:27 PM
  #11  
ed073
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 6,411

Bikes: Scapin EOS7 sloping, 10v Record, Ksyriums

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by EventServices
What annoys me is that the not-Grand Tours also see no real racing on the last day.

Georgia and California are the best examples I can offer..

2007 tour of california result was a disgrace.

But that's for a different thread....
ed073 is offline  
Old 06-03-07, 10:34 PM
  #12  
Kris Flatlander
Senior Member
 
Kris Flatlander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Bellevue, WA
Posts: 759

Bikes: Cannondale Super Six 1, Cannondale F29er 1, Cannondale XTJ, Guru Pista, Lemond Limoge

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Originally Posted by EventServices
What annoys me is that the not-Grand Tours also see no real racing on the last day.

Georgia and California are the best examples I can offer. When Floyd was 4 seconds behind Tom D in 2005, they just rode into Alpharetta with nary an attack as if it's some unwritten code. And maybe it IS an unwritten code in the Grant Tours. But in the 6 day specials, that's boring.
See the Eneco tour last year from some last day antics. I believe that was the one where Georgie got bumped off.
Kris Flatlander is offline  
Old 06-04-07, 06:35 AM
  #13  
Trevor98
Senior Member
 
Trevor98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Virginia Beach
Posts: 1,038
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Typically the final stage is set in a major city for several reasons so it has to be a sprint finish or perhaps an ITT. If it is a sprint stage then the GC riders are at a major disadvantage as GC riders aren't sprinters and the sprinters want to win the stage. Armstrong and Ullrich were never going to beat McEwen or other sprinters for the stage. At some point they'd be racing for the same time as everyone else. However, I think the bigger issue is that sprint finishes are dangerous and the GC riders don't want to crash out on the final day racing for sprint bonuses. Crashing out the GC leader is considered really bad form and would be even worse on the final stage. If the final stage is sprint it is okay for it to be ceremonial.

As for why the final stages are held in major cities, look at the TdF. The TdF brings too many fans, officials, dignitaries, press and the teams themselves to house in any small city's hotel accommodations. The finale brings too many big wigs (government officials, cycling big shots, and the like) who are not going to sleep in their cars (like some of the fans on the mountain stages if hotel rooms are short). In Paris the government guys sleep at home. In the TdC they need hotels. Only a big city has the kind of hotel room that such a race needs. In addition, the finales of most stage races has large press coverage. The telecommunication needs of a really large press pool demand a big city. The simple logistics of the finale of major races demand a large city.

Sprint finishes are preferable to ITTs in major cities for a couple of reasons but mostly because ITTs take a lot of time and block traffic along the route for hours. Conversely, a stage race passes through and the course is opened up to cars. It must be noted however, that many of these final stages are circuit courses that use a small section of the city and have minimal impact on the rest of the traffic in the city. Circuit courses are also more exciting for fans, especially casual fans, to watch as the peleton comes by multiple times. They focus the races negative impacts on a smaller section of the city than a road or ITT course would.
Trevor98 is offline  
Old 06-04-07, 08:49 AM
  #14  
bac
Senior Member
 
bac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 7,481

Bikes: Too many to list!

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Great post Trevor. What he said!

... Brad
bac is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.