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Cobbles in Tour de France .... Stupid

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Cobbles in Tour de France .... Stupid

Old 05-06-22, 11:51 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post
...
Cross-winds do the same thing. Should we stay off drafty parcours? How dare they ride through the Camargue? !!
Crosswinds couldn't keep the tufted phenom from his jaw dropping '20 end of tour maillot jaune. Probably helped him stay low key, I think he lost like 1:20 or something that day?
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Old 05-06-22, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
I have watched Paris Roubaix several times in person. In my opinion, it is a crap shoot that does not belong in a big tour. It is not a fallacy, it is my opinion that cobbles add an excessive element of chance.
That's true, but the chance means that you have to factor that into your strategy and tactics and positioning. That's what makes for a selective race. If you want to win the stage you attack on the cobbles, and if you want to win the GC you have to balance not crashing with not losing time. These things make racing more interesting, and make the win more worthy.

The beauty of stage racing is the diversity of skills required. A few sprint stages, a few long breakaways, a few mountains, a few time trials, and a few cobbles or white roads or gravel or whatever the local terrain has to offer.
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Old 05-06-22, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
I have watched Paris Roubaix several times in person. In my opinion, it is a crap shoot that does not belong in a big tour. It is not a fallacy, it is my opinion that cobbles add an excessive element of chance.
To clarify, I hear and am not negating your anti-cobble opinion.

My "fallacy" comment was directed specifically at the "good rider who is lucky" notion. I think the opposite is true. My thesis is that great riders tend to make their own luck, in all terrain, but particularly on the cobbles. The harder the race, the more likely the greatest can rise to the top while the just good riders are busy getting UNlucky. Splitting a hair? Perhaps. Is luck the absence of UNluck?

So that's why I differ and am OK with seeing them in a GT now and then, not just for the racing of the day but also the knock on effect to maybe add a hard man domestique here or a little disruption in the standings there changing the "who will work?" calculus for a few days. I wouldn't want to see a glut of cobbles, but I don't want them to vanish from GTs, either.

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Old 05-06-22, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by OBoile View Post
This. The "Tour of France" should include one of the iconic parts of French cycling.
They should bring back the café raids, too.

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Old 05-06-22, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
They should bring back the café raids, too.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3EanUbDJCE
I want a weeklong gravel stage race in the US and I absolutely want this to be a part of it.
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Old 05-07-22, 10:08 PM
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Even into the Mid 70's there were plenty of TDF stages which went over unpaved roads, sections. Mostly in the mountain stages.
If it's a road, its fair game for a stage. Riders, unfortunately will succumb to difficult conditions, often due to some other rider's error. So goes the war
And some times from their own mistakes - Kruijswijk and the Giro, Schleck and the TDF.
It's an equal playing field for all starters - what they make of it is the game.
All of this is way more 'equal' than the spectator scrum - don;t see any calls for stopping that...
Ride On thru
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Old 05-07-22, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by banana jam View Post
Bring them on! Remember the Tour is meant to be won by the best "all around" rider, not the best climber, time trialist, or one day specialist. There is a technique for riding the cobbles as well as descending Cols at 70kph. May the best rider win!
Not agreeing.
You could argue CX is the best all around. TdF is for those that are quite light and pretty much the best climbers - and able to do this many days in a row. Numerous results on one day classics I think are better representatives of best all around -IMO of course.
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Old 05-07-22, 11:35 PM
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cobbles do not feature into the tdf every year…nor does bretagne, the massif central, bordeaux or the vosges. do we really want a sanitized/pasteurized same route? imho, the organizers generally do a good job mixing up new starts/finishes
along with new climbs/challenges along with tried and true. cobbles, crosswinds, tgv crossing arms down, crazy road furniture is gonna happen.
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Old 05-17-22, 01:17 PM
  #34  
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Bubbly Corks -- STUPID

STUPID. STUPID CORKS.

Spaniards got it figured out with bottled beer. Stupid.
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Old 05-17-22, 07:41 PM
  #35  
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Apropos
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Old 05-17-22, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
STUPID. STUPID CORKS.

Spaniards got it figured out with bottled beer. Stupid.
that spanish beer has been taking the world by storm since...well...never.
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Old 05-18-22, 07:34 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
STUPID. STUPID CORKS.

Spaniards got it figured out with bottled beer. Stupid.
Cork cobbles?

You treacherous fiend.
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Old 05-30-22, 10:12 AM
  #38  
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Are any of the pre-race favorites "good" cobble riders?
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Old 05-30-22, 07:50 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Guttooth71 View Post
Are any of the pre-race favorites "good" cobble riders?
Green: WvA and MvDP are definitely good on cobbles
Yellow. Hard to say, as they don't generally ride the stuff. Though maybe not impossible: Pogacar made the cobbled climbs of RvV look easy where the specialists were making heavy going of them. He also checked out the cobbles on stage 7 (I think that's right)
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Old 06-14-22, 05:13 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post
That's the fallacy. Cobbles don't favor a good rider who was lucky. They reward a great rider who delivers and punish those who take it easy. Sure, there's some chance on the margins, but it's amazing how much skill and effort can mitigate the impact of luck, if not eliminate it. Race to the entry point, stay at the front, power through, and it's amazing how you're rewarded. Don't do that and roll the dice. The cobbles raise the stakes on both ends of that, and they alter the kind of rider who is best prepared to step up.

Cross-winds do the same thing. Should we stay off drafty parcours? How dare they ride through the Camargue? !!
I think it was GCN I heard that cobbles favor big and heavy riders and really punish small and light riders. All presenters seem to unanimously agree on it.

As a light rider myself at 127 lbs, I definitely struggle on cobble and worse on cobbled climbs. The proportion of "sprung" vs "unsprung" weight favors heavier riders because the bikes essentially weigh the same regardless of rider weight and makes the % unsprung weight (the bike) less for heavy riders and less unsprung weight by % makes you more efficient efficient over rough surfaces.

Additionally, the bike has greater tendency to flex more under a heavy rider and that helps soak some of the bumps and makes the ride smoother under the pedals. One way this can be fixed for light riders is through full suspension with travel limiter and if possible, undamped to avoid losses as much as possible. Most likely with elastomers.

From own experience as a light rider, it isn't being jarred at the seat that is the problem but getting your feet jarred by the bumps through the pedals. So it makes little difference whether you're sat down or standing and having seat suspension won't improve power output on cobble. Seat suspension only improves comfort at the saddle but does not isolate your feet from the bumps which is more important to maintain consistent power output.

I was able to try a friend's Domane with isospeed and vs my aluminum "tank". The more flexible structure and supple tires made a huge difference to me and really helped to maintain speed over rough sections in a climb. On my aluminum tank, I'd slow down over the rough sections in a climb. If I didn't slowed down, I'd be hitting zone 5 effort which is crazy.

Perhaps, if everyone used full suspension bikes on cobble stages, it will help light riders a bit. However, the % unsprung mass for heavy riders would still be lower and favor them. Unless of course, the stage has plenty of long and steep sections, that might tip the favor back to light riders.
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Old 06-14-22, 12:59 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by koala logs View Post
I think it was GCN I heard that cobbles favor big and heavy riders and really punish small and light riders. All presenters seem to unanimously agree on it.
No debate here. Just like mountains do the opposite.

In the sub-thread of lucky or good that I was commenting on and which you quoted, I did not mean to neutralize all the other characteristics.
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Old 06-14-22, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by slcbob View Post
No debate here. Just like mountains do the opposite.

In the sub-thread of lucky or good that I was commenting on and which you quoted, I did not mean to neutralize all the other characteristics.
Glad we agree. The bike can actually be a huge factor and with good full suspension design, can reduce the advantage that heavy riders have over light riders over cobble stages if they can also make such bike light enough and just above the UCI weight limit.
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Old 06-15-22, 01:11 PM
  #43  
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The cobbles themselves are hard. Having to attack the entry to each sector is hard, too. Not doing the latter successfully is often misconstrued as bad luck. But you still have to ride the cobbles. Gear matters too, as you say.
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Old 06-29-22, 07:01 AM
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If you really want the best all arounder to win, then take away the team aspect. See how the GC contenders do without their support and protection.
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