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today the full stage will be live by the way. Should be a fun one, with gc contenders (well, it's a fight for 3rd I guess, maybe 2nd, but anyway) potentially attacking right from the gun :)
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  • "If this is cycling, I am a banana"


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    #ef Hugh Carthy  (now also referred to as HUGE Carthy):

    Candidate for stage win of the year. Almost as wicked as stage 18 in the Giro last year.

    Also a candidate for stage of the year, most beautiful weather, most beautiful scenery and for being Tour de Suisse in one of the more remote areas of the country, decent tunrout of roadside spectators as well.

    As for the rest, the race was not bad - but also quite predictable, to put it that way! When #bahrain Rohan Dennis is the one that has to go on the attack, don't expect fireworks for GC... and EGan Bernal once again puts himself on the pick list for top GC contenders. Three years from now it will be Bernal vs Pogacar for the big showdowns, but the question is: will Bernal be ready for that in three week's time already?

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  • Drummer Boy

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    It was quite a stage. I originally had no idea they were broadcasting the entire thing, but just happened to be on board from the beginning.

    Competitively, it was mostly sorted in the first few Ks, and not much changed for the duration. But that's what created the tension. It seemed that Carthy knew what he was taking on, so it had to be assumed that he felt something special and thought his earliest of early attacks might actually stick—otherwise it would have just been a colossal waste of energy. But he pulled it off in dramatic fashion. It was most Landis-ian, if I may.

    It was somewhat astounding to see him maintain, and even increase, his gap over the chasers, but they just couldn't seem to close the distance. You'd think that Carthy VS Kämna, Aru, Soler and Fränk would be a losing battle, but logic doesn't always prevail out on the road.

    It was odd, too, because the four seemed to be working well, and riding well. Carthy, on the other hand, never looked all that great on his bike. I'm sure part of that is his tall, lanky ‎1.93 m (6 ft 4 in) frame. "Long levers" is how Brian Smith described it, but the man from  #ef never looked very fluid or relaxed, which is what one would expect for at least part of a long, solo breakaway over multiple mountain passes.

    And let's not even talk about his side-saddle super-tuck position.  :-x

    As noted, the scenery was spectacular, and due to last-minute changes in the course because of road conditions, we were privileged to witness the peloton climbing the cobbled surface of the Passo San Gottardo for the second time in as many days. It was quite a treat.  :)

    However, what goes up, must come down, and down, down, down they went on some glorious descents. Carthy handled himself well, but there was enough snow melt on the hairpins to keep Dennis and Bernal—who were in hot pursuit behind him—honest on every turn. The camera work was mostly focused on the leader and his two pursuers, so we didn't get to see how the peloton navigated much of the downhill, but it was edge-of-the-seat viewing most of the way.

    It's a stage that will likely to be spoken of for a long time, and used as a reference against others in the future. Given the drama of the day, and the fact that it was Carthy's first WT win, you'd think he'd be elated after crossing the line. But he was so chilled-out in his post-race interview that the reporter felt the need to ask him, "Do you realize that you won?"

    Well, maybe he was still just processing it all.
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