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A classic in Gent (SPOILERS)

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A classic in Gent (SPOILERS)

Old 03-27-22, 08:30 PM
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A classic in Gent (SPOILERS)

21 year old Eritrean wins a race that everybody thought would be taken by WvA.

This is a great day for cycling.

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Old 03-28-22, 03:26 AM
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amen
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Old 03-28-22, 03:34 AM
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so which upcoming classic does he project best in? ronde or l-b-l?
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Old 03-28-22, 04:26 AM
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It sure was a great finale.
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Old 03-28-22, 05:30 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
21 year old Eritrean wins a race that everybody thought would be taken by WvA.

This is a great day for cycling.
I watched this thanks to gcn and a VPN, that finish was a nail bitter! The lead quartet were absolutely committed with each rider going all in! Then Biniam jumped at 250m I was screaming "too early!" There was hesitation after the finish because with the camera it was hard to tell if Laporte had just gotten it. Oh it was wonderful!

The large chase group behind was completely disorganized - to the point of Küng screaming and gesticulating for more help.

Merlier was banging his bars across the line and I was like "Well you sat in wheels along with Wout at the back till 500m forget you!"

Biniam constantly with his nose in the wind and following all the moves, Sunday and Friday as well. Plus in Paris Nice stage 6 he was just pipped to 4th behind Wout!

10th in Milano-torino behind Cav, Bouhanni, Kristoff, Sagan in a bunch sprint and he had no lead out.

I agree with Benji and LR's opinion that instead of the Brugge de Panne we need a world tour race in Africa. Tour of Rwanda was really interesting to watch.
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Old 03-28-22, 07:28 AM
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A side story, about the failure of the Alepecin-Fenix team to chase as they could have.

https://www.velonews.com/events/clas...gent-wevelgem/


The interviews don't portray any rancor directly, but I hope Merlier and Philipsen's egos haven't grown such that they can't work well for one another and for the team, rather than just for themselves. Last year at the TdF, they did very well by taking turns doing lead out for one another.


if it would come back together and I would finish second or Jasper third then the other one would be disappointed.
(Uh, I think that Tim was supposed to say was that if he had supported his teamate to put him on the podium, then he and the team would both be happy, no?)

Last edited by MinnMan; 03-28-22 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 03-28-22, 07:48 AM
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Adam Blythe on GCN live was losing his mind for ~15k about the chasing group racing for fifth place. All the teams with numbers (Alpecin-Fenix, Trek, etc.) not being willing to make a tough call and sacrifice a rider to the chase, and all the solo riders being unwilling to risk dragging the likes of WVA, Pederson, Merlier to the line and have to settle for 5th or 6th, so they'll settle for 9th or 10th instead.

It happens a lot. He was extra animated about it. And the announcer (IDK, not Hatch) couldn't get a word in edgewise with his color commentator. Sort of the opposite of what happens with Carlton Kirby.

Anyway, if there is a WT race in the Dark Continent, we'll see houses made of bidons when the route passes by the second year. It would have to be an early or late season thing, a la the middle east events and the [now gone?] Asian ones. Too many moving parts for a spring race. I think Brugge de Panne is safe.
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Old 03-28-22, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post

It happens a lot. He was extra animated about it. And the announcer (IDK, not Hatch) couldn't get a word in edgewise with his color commentator. Sort of the opposite of what happens with Carlton Kirby.
Just went back and rewatched it and you're right! Demare was pulling in group two when he started in. The commentator was Jez Cox and he straight out told off Blythe that Jez felt he would "get in trouble for comments like that" when Blythe was lampooning riding back to the team bus with a 12th place finish. Blythe retorted something about "yeah I don't mean it like that I have full respect"

I was too busy watching the pain faces on all four of the leaders towards the end. Dunno how you can even sprint at that point.

As far as Africa I think the UCI could do something in Africa early, I watched Pierre Roland and other Conti riders doing it. You could have a one day in those mountainous regions I dunno. Make it worth triple points or something.

Edited to say that yes I assume UCI would inject $$$ for the logistics so they don't lean heavily on the country for support. There has been a lot of great growth and progress since some of the early 90's horrors.
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Old 03-28-22, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
Just went back and rewatched it and you're right! Demare was pulling in group two when he started in. The commentator was Jez Cox and he straight out told off Blythe that Jez felt he would "get in trouble for comments like that" when Blythe was lampooning riding back to the team bus with a 12th place finish. Blythe retorted something about "yeah I don't mean it like that I have full respect"
I remember that comment and I thought it was a little cheesy. Who is he going to get in trouble with? Maybe someone at Eurosport, but not at GCN. When Dan Lloyd gets going with Carlton Kirby chuntering on during the middle bits there isn't an adult in the room and they get naughty.
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Old 03-28-22, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by ooga-booga View Post
so which upcoming classic does he project best in? ronde or l-b-l?
How close does he compare to Higuita? LR was thinking Higuita would fare better in fleche wallone (is that the ronde?) over lbl so I wonder.

Either way Girmay is scheduled for the Giro!

LR also made the comment that Girmay saved wanty-groupe-gobert's world tour license this year.

Girmay had signed with Delco, Delco folded and wanty picked him up. Gosh darn it Vaughters you let Higuita go and didn't see Girmay!?
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Old 03-28-22, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
How close does he compare to Higuita? LR was thinking Higuita would fare better in fleche wallone (is that the ronde?) over lbl so I wonder.

Either way Girmay is scheduled for the Giro!

LR also made the comment that Girmay saved wanty-groupe-gobert's world tour license this year.

Girmay had signed with Delco, Delco folded and wanty picked him up. Gosh darn it Vaughters you let Higuita go and didn't see Girmay!?
I heard LR talk about that- that's pretty great.. I didn't catch the duration of his contract,though? I wouldn't be surprised to see him on a more prominent team as soon as he's available.

I think Girmay's classics season may already be over? he was headed back to his family in Eritrea, which means he's off the race circuit for a few weeks at least. Perhaps we won't see him racing again until the Giro, which after all, is only a little more than a month away. Or maybe he'll come back for L-B-L.
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Old 03-28-22, 07:46 PM
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That was a great result for Girmay and for cycling. Girmay's been in great form all year and he was due to break through sooner rather than later, with a 10th in Milan-Turin, 12th at MSR and 5th at E3. IIRC he'll be back to racing at Frankfurt and will be racing in the Giro, where nobody will be surprised if he grabs a stage or two. IWG have been treating him well, a lot of support but no pressure. They've got a gem in him and they know it.

There's another young (22) Eritrean who's been showing good form this year, Natnael Tesfatsion. He doesn't seem to be the prodigy that Girmay is, but then he's on a middling Pro team (Drone Hopper). He's also more of a stage racer. Curious to see what his ceiling is.
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Old 03-28-22, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
How close does he compare to Higuita? LR was thinking Higuita would fare better in fleche wallone (is that the ronde?) over lbl so I wonder.

Either way Girmay is scheduled for the Giro!

LR also made the comment that Girmay saved wanty-groupe-gobert's world tour license this year.

Girmay had signed with Delco, Delco folded and wanty picked him up. Gosh darn it Vaughters you let Higuita go and didn't see Girmay!?
tour of flanders/ronde is different than la flèche. just ask the green bullet.
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Old 03-29-22, 05:33 AM
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The Armed Forces Cycling Classic is the regular local event with the biggest name riders. I was working the race last year and got to chatting with a couple of fans all decked out in Eritrean garb. I don't remember if there were riders there or not, and they would have been in team kit if they were, but the three guys were talking up their country's appearance in the pro ranks, taking aim at Colombia and Slovenia, and just having a good time. I knew Teklehaimanot so I got a thumbs up but they were throwing out a bunch of other names. IDK, maybe Girmay was one of them. I wish I'd listened to that and any stock tips they might have dropped, too.
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Old 03-30-22, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
I heard LR talk about that- that's pretty great.. I didn't catch the duration of his contract,though? I wouldn't be surprised to see him on a more prominent team as soon as he's available.

I think Girmay's classics season may already be over? he was headed back to his family in Eritrea, which means he's off the race circuit for a few weeks at least. Perhaps we won't see him racing again until the Giro, which after all, is only a little more than a month away. Or maybe he'll come back for L-B-L.
I guess Intermrache is going to keep him for a while. And pay him what he's worth, too.

Girmay's salary set to triple after his Gent-Wevelgem victory

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Old 04-07-22, 04:25 PM
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Stories are that Ineos is going to try to sign Girmay. Great. But if I were a DS, I'd like to watch him for longer before I laid out giant cash. he's very young.
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Old 04-08-22, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Stories are that Ineos is going to try to sign Girmay. Great. But if I were a DS, I'd like to watch him for longer before I laid out giant cash. he's very young.
Carlos Rodriguez just nabbed his first pro win today for ineos in basque country, with all this WT relegation stuff big teams can afford to throw money at a prospect rather then miss out. A better proposition then paying Froome to still ride (though I'd want Froome on my staff for sure).

Kristoff and Girmay just saved Wanty-groupe-gobert's butt!
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Old 04-08-22, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Stories are that Ineos is going to try to sign Girmay. Great. But if I were a DS, I'd like to watch him for longer before I laid out giant cash. he's very young.
Not like I've got my thumb on the pulse of the transfers and development rider economy, but here's a contrarian idea, just for discussion.

What is "giant cash?" I think it would be a heckuva lot more than 3-4-5-8x his current salary. Say they get him for 5x, that would still be a bargain for a proven young gun. And if they wait and he does turn out to be the next hot property, he won't be had at anywhere near that.

Layer onto that the idea that there is still a lot of investment that needs to go into his development. Ineos has a strong program there. Intermarche-Wanty-Goubert less so. Perhaps they have faith that they'll get him to a better place and get some ROI. And it may be what's best for him, too, in the long run.

Still, though, it's a crap shoot. I hope he comes along like a champ. Signs sure point to some possibilities there.
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Old 04-08-22, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post
Not like I've got my thumb on the pulse of the transfers and development rider economy, but here's a contrarian idea, just for discussion.

What is "giant cash?" I think it would be a heckuva lot more than 3-4-5-8x his current salary. Say they get him for 5x, that would still be a bargain for a proven young gun. And if they wait and he does turn out to be the next hot property, he won't be had at anywhere near that.

Layer onto that the idea that there is still a lot of investment that needs to go into his development. Ineos has a strong program there. Intermarche-Wanty-Goubert less so. Perhaps they have faith that they'll get him to a better place and get some ROI. And it may be what's best for him, too, in the long run.

Still, though, it's a crap shoot. I hope he comes along like a champ. Signs sure point to some possibilities there.
There was an earlier report that IWG had already tripled Girmay's salary up to €1M, so I don't think Ineos is going to hit a large multiple of that. Maybe X 1.5 or X 2 at most? But also, I think Girmay is signed with IWG for another 2 years or so, so I'm not sure what the timeline for all this could be
https://cyclinguptodate.com/cycling/...-biniam-girmay
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Old 04-08-22, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
There was an earlier report that IWG had already tripled Girmay's salary up to €1M, so I don't think Ineos is going to hit a large multiple of that. Maybe X 1.5 or X 2 at most? But also, I think Girmay is signed with IWG for another 2 years or so, so I'm not sure what the timeline for all this could be
https://cyclinguptodate.com/cycling/...-biniam-girmay
The multiplier I was talking about for Ineos, et al, was of his recent base not his post-Gent-Wevelgem kiss. Concur we're not talking €2M yet. Maybe soon, though!

I suspect that Girmay's raise with IWG isn't done yet, and he'll be committed to them for more than 2 years if it does go down. Whether that ends up at 3x now or €1M or something else, TBD. I'm just pulling numbers out of a hat. The press may be, too.

The 3x and €1M numbers imply perhaps he's on a base of around €300,000 now, but I'd be floored if that's true. I think the minimum is around €50k and he has some results but he's still basically a neo pro. If I had to guess, I would have said under €100k.

If he bounces from IWG, there will either be some backroom deal or lingering breach of contract thing (a la WVA) and a newer, tighter commitment to whoever inks the next deal. I wonder what kind of bonus structure and escalators get baked into these contracts? All dark arts to me.
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