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M Gee

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Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
« on: July 20, 2019, 18:53 »
Who will be in #yellow. Big question. After stage 14, I think Alaphillipe has a good chance of keeping #yellow until today. Today we cross into Italy, and borrow the Giro's Alps for a day. (Oops. It's the high-falutin' online maps. Dang things are impossible to read. No civilized person should be required to use them. :fp ) It will be a hard day.



After stage 14, I said this about today:
. . . we go over the Izoard and the Galibier.  #ineos might try and launch Thomas on a Landis[1] over the Izoard, a la Froome's Giro. But I don't think they have the strength or dominance to do that this time. And nobody else, IMHO, is strong enough to give such a strategy a go. If it were Dumoulin and Thomas, I would say Dumo could go with Thomas. But not Julian. Too much mountain. His strategy will have to be staying in the wheels.

I would think the most likely strategy would be an attack on the Galibier - and that could come from  #groupama#jumbo, or  #movistar. ATM, it doesn't look like anybody else has the chops to pull that off. Based on today, I'm doubtful that Ineos will be able to pull it off (shock of shocks!). But it would be the next most likely spot for a GC attack. Over the Galibier, and only a descent to the line.
 . . .
 1. I'm not referring to the Dark Side of his effort - rather the long range attack that would seem suicidal at first glance. If I get too much blowback, I'll figure out some other way to say it, but "doing a Landis" has a certain cachet.
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  • « Last Edit: July 20, 2019, 21:37 by M Gee »
    . . .He had the bit between his teeth, and he loiked the taste, mate . . .

    LukasCPH

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #1 on: July 20, 2019, 21:06 »
    Today we cross into Italy, and borrow the Giro's Alps for a day.
    Quoi?
    Tout l'étape est en *fr France!
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    M Gee

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #2 on: July 20, 2019, 21:39 »
    Quoi?
    Tout l'étape est en *fr France!

    :fp
    Ok, fixed that. On the news tomorrow, you'll find that Italy has done a Brexit, and took the border with them. :D
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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #3 on: July 24, 2019, 22:00 »
    tomorrow's finale, via @raffilpt:



    till the top of the Galibier, it's the same as in 2011, when Andy Schleck attacked on the the Izoard with 60k to go and won by 2 minutes



    This time the stage finishes in Valloire though, so after going down the Galibier (on the side which most of the time is used as the ascent). The first half of the descent is very technical, and there could be some rain.
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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #4 on: July 25, 2019, 02:46 »
    and Ineos and Jumbo Visma both without key domestiques for the leadup/flat/valley its perhaps a little less likely that we will see an early attack from either of them

    While neither Martin nor Luke Rowe are mountain doms, both can pull the peleton along well enough to set the early difficult pace and be relied upon to make it hard enough to crack a contender or two.   They will be missed by their teams.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #5 on: July 25, 2019, 04:18 »
    The first half of the descent is very technical, and there could be some rain.

    Vande Velde did a nice recon of this stage for NBC, but I can't seem to find the clip posted anywhere.

    The descent will be very tricky if wet, and there are no barriers to prevent the riders from going over the edge should they misjudge some of those turns. So even if dry, it could still be treacherous if someone is looking to gain seconds. I think he said it's about 15 to 20 minutes from the summit to the finish, so it's going to be all-out if the GC is on the line. A mishap here could easily take someone out of contention.

    That being said, if there's rain on the ascent, that could very well work in Pinot's favor. Take out the heat factor, and he could become the highest place Frenchman in the race. But Buchmann and Bernal may both have a few tricks up their sleeves, too. Those are the two that I'm most curious about at this point in the race.
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  • Mellow Velo

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #6 on: July 25, 2019, 07:32 »
    and Ineos and Jumbo Visma both without key domestiques for the leadup/flat/valley its perhaps a little less likely that we will see an early attack from either of them

    While neither Martin nor Luke Rowe are mountain doms, both can pull the peleton along well enough to set the early difficult pace and be relied upon to make it hard enough to crack a contender or two.   They will be missed by their teams.

    To the extent that on Belgian tv last night, they made a joke about the race jury getting a back hander off DQS. :D

    Weather forecasts are varying for today. Some forecast blazing Sun, others rain and much cooler on the cols.
    I guess we'll find out soon.

    Imo, it needs to kick off on the Izoard, today. If it comes down to the Galibier, I think Alaphilippe will be in exactly the same position. Voeckler lost next to nothing in 2011, before cracking on the Alpe, the following day.
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  • « Last Edit: July 25, 2019, 08:27 by Mellow Velo »
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    M Gee

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #7 on: July 25, 2019, 12:31 »
    Bruyneel, yesterday, in his podcast, was somewhat critical of DQS for not saving everybody for the defense of yellow. But I wanted to put this here, today, BEFORE the stage, because, while I agree with JB in one way, I mostly do not, for another reason.

    DQS has already discovered they don't have the team legs to fully defend #yellow. So, IMO, their conclusion is to defend while they can, but not to stop anyone from pursuing a stage result when they feel good. Which was their original objective (stage results).

    Enric may be the only team member exempt from that. Hopefully Enric will find better form for the next 3 days.
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  • M Gee

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    Re: Stage 18: Embrun > Valloire
    « Reply #8 on: July 25, 2019, 19:13 »
    What an incredible stage for Alaphillipe. A dangerous stage as well, with Bernal moving up.

    But here is an interesting thing. For several years we have watched, as Movistar, with an all-star cast, seemed unable to gell sufficiently to actually DO anything with that cast, especially in the Tour. Today, they seem to have gelled - APART. "The Team" is revealed as a facade. And, in working against each other, they enabled Alaphillipe and  #deceuninck in making this Tour that much more exciting!

    Great teamwork,  #movistar!

    Post Merge: July 25, 2019, 22:56
    Well, now, #movistar has come out and said it was all planned that way. Ooookay, then.
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  • « Last Edit: July 25, 2019, 22:56 by M Gee, Reason: Merged DoublePost »

     



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