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Mellow Velo

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14th Strade Bianche (1.UWT)  »  Siena  ›  Siena   (184k)




Dust whirls over the Tuscan hills, (forecast 37C) the 14th edition of the Strade Bianche takes place this Saturday. The route is 184 kilometres long with one third on dust roads, often stiffly uphill.



With Strade Bianche the riders enter a race with medieval characteristics. In the rolling landscape of Tuscany the toughest sections are on twisting gravel paths.



Sterrato 9 is 800 metres long and pepped up with a double digit gradient ramp before hitting the tarmac in Vico d’Arbia. A rolling stretch continues onto the penultimate sterrato. Strade di Colle Pinzuto is 2.4 kilometres long and the steepest ramp is located at the beginning. But no time for a breather after this 15% ramp, as the road keeps climbing gradually all the way until the end.

The final gravel road is a 1.1 kilometres toil, opening with a short descent and closing with 18% gradients. When Strade Bianche reaches Le Tolfe there are still 12 kilometres to go.



With 5 kilometres remaining the road flies downhill, only to go back up again in the last kilometre. Entering the city walls of Siena, a 16% sector welcomes the riders. Then a sharp turn to the right, left, and right again. The finish is at Il Campo, Siena’s iconic square resembling a theatre.







Startlist:

https://firstcycling.com/race.php?r=54&y=2020&k=8

:*:*:*:*:* Alaphilippe, Van der Poel
:*:*:*:* Van Aert, Pogačar
:*:*:* Stybar, Gilbert, Benoot, Van Avermaet, Sagan
:*:* Bettiol, Nibali, Schachmann, Teuns, Fuglsang
:* Kwiatkowski, Naesen, Jungels, Küng, Dillier, Moscon, Brambilla
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  • « Last Edit: July 31, 2020, 09:28 by Mellow Velo »
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.

    t-72

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    This year is an exception on everything, the race will be more open than usual, so I'd like to throw in a few names that may be able to do good:
    #alpecin Petr Vakoc
    #bahrain Ivan Garcia (if he keeps on improving),
    #wanty Corne van Kessel
    #ntt Valgren, Hagen, Tiller
    #uae Diego Ulissi (Pogi is great, but he isn't that much of a classics rider yet)

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  • Mellow Velo

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    This year is an exception on everything, the race will be more open than usual, so I'd like to throw in a few names that may be able to do good:
    #alpecin Petr Vakoc
    #bahrain Ivan Garcia (if he keeps on improving),
    #wanty Corne van Kessel
    #ntt Valgren, Hagen, Tiller
    #uae Diego Ulissi (Pogi is great, but he isn't that much of a classics rider yet)



    I am with you on #alpecin Petr Vakoc as I have him in my CQ team. ;)
    Really wanted Ivan Garcia too, but blew the budget on MVDP.

    I just think that TP is powerful enough and good on the really steep stuff.
    Should go well over 180 odd kms in this, the most untypical of classics.

    It's all pretty subjective, since I borrowed that list and made my own alterations.

    Here's Cyclingstage's list:

    Favourites 2020 Strade Bianche
    :*:*:*:*:* Mathieu van der Poel, Wout Van Aert
    :*:*:*:* Julian Alaphilippe, Michal Kwiatkowski, Jakob Fuglsang
    :*:*:* Tiesj Benoot, Zdenek Stybar, Maximilian Schachmann, Michael Woods
    :*:* Simon Clarke, Philippe Gilbert, Peter Sagan, Kasper Asgreen, Dylan Teuns
    :* Davide Formolo, Alexey Lutsenko, Greg Van Avermaet, Bob Jungels, Gianni Moscon

    Yay! Simon Clarke.
    Kirby will be ecstatic. :D

    Quite a few there to be added to the list of possibles.

    Hopefully tomorrow, Search will provide the usual media picks.
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  • search

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    Hopefully tomorrow, Search will provide the usual media picks.

    for sure ;)

    Apart from the usual suspects, I'm looking forward to see how another crosser will do: #wanty Quinten Hermans. He was supposed to peak for Fleche Wallonne, but now his road season has been shortened to 1 1/2 months, basically leaving him with Strade Bianche as the only major classic. So I guess we should get to see fireworks from the start.

    Alaphilippe downplayed his chances a bit, and also generally, some guys having faced a strict lockdown (France, Italy, Spain) may be lacking a bit more percentages than those from countries where they could train basically without restrictions
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  • "If this is cycling, I am a banana"

    search

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    some guys (among others Jungels, Honoré, Lammertink, with the latter one breaking his collarbone) crashed during the recons already, by the way, as apparently conditions are more slippery than ever before
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    *be Het Nieuwsblad
    :*:*:*:*:* Alaphilippe
    :*:*:*:* van der Poel, van Avermaet
    :*:*:* van Aert, Schachmann, Moscon
    :*:* Lutsenko, Pogacar, Bettiol, Kwiatkowski
    :* Naesen, Fuglsang, Gilbert, Teuns, Benoot

    nothing in Gazzetta or l'Équipe today, unfortunately.

    HBVL did a long feature on Quinten Hermans though:



    he says with the dry, loose roads, it'll be tough. Not being able to take the corners quickly will make the course a lot heavier. He expects his technique to be an advantage. "The looser the surface, the better."

    In l'Équipe today, Alaphilippe again said that he is not in top shape yet. Van Avermaet on the other hand seems very motivated, and says that the heat will be in his favour.
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  • Mellow Velo

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     Let's see if I can get Sporza's star rating to load....


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  • AG

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    gee - you know its going to be tough when Sagan and Gilbert are only 2 stars ... and in Het Newsblad Sagan didnt even make the list !!!!!

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  • just some guy

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    Of course, if this turns out someday to be the industry standard integrated handlebar-computer-braking solution then I'll eat my kevlar-reinforced aerodynamic hat.

    Larri Nov 12, 2014

    AG

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    yeah I saw that.

    Considering MSR is not all that far away, he might be a bit disappointed with not being in the front groups ...


    That was a great race.  I do love SB.   The only complaint was the late coverage.  Still, we got there just in time to see the major action at the front, but would have been nice to see what happened in the lead up to the major moves.

    Very happy with WVA winning.  Great to see him back
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  • AG

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    And the womens race was great too.  Mavi Garcia was fantastic - but Annamiek Van Vleuten is just unbeatable.
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  • Echoes

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    yeah I saw that.

    Considering MSR is not all that far away, he might be a bit disappointed with not being in the front groups ...

    I think this was more of a race for those who could best deal with extreme heat than for the best talent on such courses, so provided Milan-Sanremo might be raced in totally different weather conditions (or not?), there's nothing to worry about it for him, for the moment. Even if the "Primavera" (lol I just realised that this nickname didn't fit this year :D) is also raced in hot weather, I mean there's still the wind from the Med to alleviate the heat in the finale. Phil made some great achievements in heat in the past but his best moments were in cold and rainy conditions, weren't they?

    I'm also glad to see Van Aert winning. Didn't expect him to win but his attack on the last gravel section was mighty. Glad to see Van Avermaet still in the Top10 !
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  • "Paris-Roubaix is the biggest cycling race in the world, bigger than the Tour de France, bigger than any other bike race" (Sir Bradley Wiggins)

    Drummer Boy

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    If nothing else, Wout deserves a trophy for that impressive head of hair!
    @4:00



    An American in the Top 10? Surely a first for that, no? :slow
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    An American in the Top 10? Surely a first for that, no? :slow

    unless you count #garmin Hesjedal as one of yours: yep
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  • Servais Knavendish

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    "Phew what a scorcher" as the 70's headline writers might have opined...

    Just so so good to have racing back and I agree AG - love SB; and fantastic to see WVA flying after that truly horrific injury; I even loved Carlton's return; the Buddha pizza and the need for Brut(e) force / Wout splashing it all over etc etc

    just great
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  • AG

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    https://www.sbs.com.au/cyclingcentral/article/2020/08/03/whole-health-system-damn-joke-dillier-reacts-coronavirus-positive-strade-bianche?fbclid=IwAR0uPG-_InpXbWFPpUeGh70HgZeiZhoxjHmCj-EuAbKoPXjkTuHNWNfqU6k

    so it seems that Silvain Dillier tested posative before travelling to SB - and was prevented from going.

    He has then tested negative a bunch of times and is unhappy that he was prevented from going to the race because "he is the healthiest guy on earth"

    The fact that if he was posative, he could have spread the virus to a lot of people, and risked the entire cycling season doesnt seem to matter much to him - its all about him.   :fp
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  • Mellow Velo

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     I mean how is this possible? Fastest last 25kms from Saturday via Strava. Note who was 3rd.

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  • Drummer Boy

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    unless you count #garmin Hesjedal as one of yours: yep

    He's not "American." Just ask him. He'll agree.  :P

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  • Drummer Boy

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    t-72

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    I mean how is this possible? Fastest last 25kms from Saturday via Strava. Note who was 3rd.

    Was the part before the last 25km different in any way?
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    LukasCPH

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    Was the part before the last 25km different in any way?
    Yes and no.
    The women skipped the Monte Sante Marie sector (and their race was 48 km shorter in general), but from shortly after that sector, the route was exactly the same for the final ~39 km.


    Now, AvV has been training with the #mitchelton men's team (as well as recently in Livigno with a.o. #jumbo Van Aert and #sunweb Sütterlin) for at least the last two seasons. That has to have an effect.

    And while the on-screen time gaps looked incredible during the race, they are confirmed by the riders' Strava uploads:
    https://twitter.com/laflammerouge16/status/1289871599131189248
    First Mavi García opened a 5'30" gap on the peloton in 10 km (when the peloton wasn't racing fully), then AvV closed that gap (5'19" by now) in 17.3 km. Even though Mavi was pedalling squares at that point, it was a massive chase.
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