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O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 14:13

I have been a bit slow this summer in opening up our official unofficial forum sport - which is of course cycling. But suddenly the first Saturday of July is almost upon us, and in fact we are less than 24 hours from the start of the Tour de France in what is likely to be a damp Dusseldorf.
This year ITV4 (God bless their cotton socks) are showing every stage in its entirety, as well as an evening summary programme. Coverage starts tomorrow from 2.00 p.m.

The 2017 Tour sees Froome going for his fourth win, but his results so far have not gone so well, perhaps because he is also hoping to also perform in the Spanish Vuelta tour later in the year, thus he doesn't want to hit form too early.
Quintana is now coming-of-age and will be a real threat, possibly the favourite in many eyes.
There is also Richie Porte, the soft-spoken Aussie from Tasmania, who has shown really good form this year. However, Richie has always cracked in the past, once the real pressure comes on so it remains to be seen if he has the mental resolve take the yellow journey to Paris.

Jumping off the fence I think Froome will come from behind and win with a strong last-week performance. But I could be wrong.


(Sm46)

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: Wildwillie (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 14:41

I heard this week that Yorkshire had secured some more prestigious cycle racing for 2019 iirc.



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Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 15:51

Quote:
Wildwillie
I heard this week that Yorkshire had secured some more prestigious cycle racing for 2019 iirc.

This was not a new announcement - we already knew that Yorkshire had won the 2019 World Championships. Just that old fox, Sir Gary Verity, spotting an opportunity for publicity immediately prior to the TdF IMHO.
The World Championships have a history of losing money for participating towns/regions, so maybe he is also fishing for some sponsorship/grants?

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 16:47

I hope you're right about Froome Almo but I just don't fancy him to win this year.

If he can't win , I hope Richie Porte does. Don't like Quintanas style of just sitting there or thereabouts then trying to win it on one big mountain late on - boring!

What do you reckon to Cavs chances of edging closer to the record?

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 16:59

I feel that Cav is only riding as it is the TdF and because he is such a big part of his team - there is little evidence that he has recovered sufficiently from the Glandular Fever illness he has been suffering with.

There again, write him off at your peril.

Perhaps he can ride into form and take a stage late on (Paris?).

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 17:10

Agree entirely. I'd like to see him get it though.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: Albert Fishwick (IP Logged)
Date: 30 June, 2017 22:37

It will be an interesting one with limited time trial kilometres and fewer mountain finishes, not ideal for Froome but he showed last year that he is prepared to try new approaches. It remains to be seen whether Landa will be happy playing super-domestique.

Not sure Contador can do it any more over three weeks, nor what the Giro has taken out of Quintana. No Nibali this time but Aru seems to be finding form. Chaves is an unknown quantity this year, Yates should be there or thereabouts.

Not sure Cav will have the energy to challenge for long after his illness and the German sprinters will be going all out for stages. At least Gaviria isn't here.

It should be a very interesting year and I hope it stays open well into the last week, with some well-placed French riders to keep the locals interested.



If I had all the money I've spent on drink ..... I'd spend it on drink.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 01 July, 2017 18:33

I'm yet to to be convinced by Landa Albert.

In the few races where he's been the main man, he hasn't really pulled any trees up imho.

Thomas wins the opening TT and will be in yellow tomorrow. Good stuff, obviously inspired by the Lions! :-)

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 01 July, 2017 20:33

Excellent day for team Sky: Thomas winning was great given his bad luck in the Giro when, as team leader, he was taken out by a motorbike. And Froome also now has 30+ seconds on his main rivals.

Just like to add a point of protocol here. As many people (especially those working during the week) will not get to see the live racing, please could we resist posting "spoilers" until after the ITV4 highlights finish at 8.00 p.m.

Where would we be without rules, eh??????????

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 01 July, 2017 20:54

Good shout Almo,

apologies if I've inadvertently ruined it for anyone.

Oh, and in answer to your question - France! (old Al Murray pub landlord joke)

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: Albert Fishwick (IP Logged)
Date: 02 July, 2017 09:24

Sad to see what happened to Valverde. I know he's not everyone's cup of tea but he livens up the mountain stages and keeps Quintana honest. Izaguirre went out at the same spot apparently. Shame no-one realised they could have done with a couple of mattresses in front of the barriers on a bend in the p'ing rain.



If I had all the money I've spent on drink ..... I'd spend it on drink.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 03 July, 2017 21:07

Today's stage had Valverde's name written all over it, but he was watching from hospital. However, deserved win from Sagan, even though his foot slipped out of the pedal.

Is anyone finding the wall-to-wall TV coverage a bit hard to bear? I commend the ITV4 commentators, who are doing an excellent job, but feel sorry for them. I watched today the highlights, having been fishing, and the highlights programme was excellent.

When we reach the mountain stages the live broadcasts will come into their own.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: Albert Fishwick (IP Logged)
Date: 04 July, 2017 09:23

I could watch with no commentary (and often do) just to see the countryside roll by! I think ITV are suffering a bit as they only have Boulting & Millar. Since no-one could do a 5-6 hour stint without breaks they are using a bloke back in London chatting to whoever they can find with a role in cycling to provide some relief.

Eurosport are using their two main commentators in relay (including, sadly, the execrable Carlton Kirby) with experts rotating in and out. This works better.

There will be longueurs but I would rather that than miss early action.



If I had all the money I've spent on drink ..... I'd spend it on drink.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: apb (IP Logged)
Date: 04 July, 2017 16:18

Well that was exciting! (No spoilers ...)



Waiting for the good times ...

..and waiting ....


... and waiting ...

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 04 July, 2017 20:48

Thanks for your restraint apb!

The sort of stage that would be more entertaining on highlights than live imho, though with traumatic events difficult to maintain the "radio silence" and avoid spoilers.

I thought Sagan deserved a yellow, rather than red, card. The whole sprint was chaotic, everyone trying to take advantage of Kittel's absence, everyone wandering to the right, finally two people trying to get on Demare's wheel. Usually the offending sprinter gets demoted to last place and loses all points, but is allowed to continue.

Can anyone remember the demon sprinter, Abdoujaparov?

EDIT: See this [www.youtube.com]

At the time of posting not sure about Cav's prognosis but hope he can start tomorrow, even if that seems unlikely.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/07/2017 21:07 by almostatyke.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 04 July, 2017 21:45

Big winner today, as usual, will be the bookies.

Lot of money will have been on Sagan for the Green Jersey I imagine. That competition now wide open.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: Albert Fishwick (IP Logged)
Date: 05 July, 2017 07:51

Broken shoulder blade for Cav so that's that. I also thought the original punishment was about right, you couldn't be sure that Sagan's actions were deliberate. Different race now outside the GC battle. That should get more interesting today.



If I had all the money I've spent on drink ..... I'd spend it on drink.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: apb (IP Logged)
Date: 05 July, 2017 08:36

Quote:
almostatyke
The sort of stage that would be more entertaining on highlights than live imho, though with traumatic events difficult to maintain the "radio silence" and avoid spoilers.

I'm enjoying the live coverage. I watch it in the same way as I used to watch test matches back in the day when cricket was on real telly - it's on all the time and I get on with other things while its there in the background.

Personally I've never had a problem maintaining radio silence in the situation we had yesterday; I would be a rubbish journalist for that reason (among others!)



Waiting for the good times ...

..and waiting ....


... and waiting ...

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 05 July, 2017 21:02

apb I am with you in everything you say. I remember the late Willie Rushton, interviewed at Lords saying, "cricket is not really what you are watching, it is what you are "at". If you really want to see the details - watch on TV".
The TdF is similar. But of course nowadays with modern technology it is possible to stand by the side of the road and see the power meter outputs of the riders on your idiot phone.

However I am back from my excellent walk with Bobba in t' dales and having watched the ITV4 highlights.

Sky look exceedingly good. Ritchie Porte is continuing to show all the signs of a gallant loser.

Re: O/T Tour de France
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 07 July, 2017 21:31

I think we are now past the "phoney war", an interesting week but it has to be said that the two most charismatic characters have been eliminated in Cav and Sagan. Kittel seems dominant in the sprints although full marks to Bossan-Hagen (not an icecream brand BTW) who ran him to within 6mm today.
Tomorrow the Jura, not a full-blown high mountain stage, but one where the big players will have to do their stuff. Then it is about recovery as the going gets tougher on Sunday.

(Sm146)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/07/2017 21:41 by almostatyke.

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