Absent TTT favours true TdF champion

Discussion in 'Professional Cycling' started by ullrichrules, Oct 17, 2009.

  1. ullrichrules

    ullrichrules New Member

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    Folks,

    I am delighted that the 2010 TdF will omit the TTT for the following reasons.

    1. Cycling is a team sport and although it would only seem logical to include a 'team' time trial, not every team is created equally. Some teams are richer, better managed and others are manufactured for TTTs and tempo riding(see later). Other teams are more suited for the sprinters, sprinters and flat stage breakaways, or a mixture. The end result however is that only one person wins the TdF and to say that rider 'X' individually lost the TdF by 90 secs and his 'team' gave up 120 secs in a TTT is counterintuitive.

    2. Those teams seeking to land on the podium in a tour would avoid harbouring any weak links like sprinters... What recent Sprinters' team has won the TdF? Again if you are on a team with a sprinter/non-time trial specialist, you have just added an anchor onto your team, and why would your team leader want that known liability? One way to equalize teams in a TdF TTT is to make each team enroll an equal amount of climbers, sprinters and domestiques.

    3. The time penalties formerly associated with TTTs essentially limit the number of viable challengers for the GC. Arguments that losing a TTT by 2-3 minutes with further time penalties should not stop riders from still challenging on the mountain stages is not compatible with TdFs in the last 2 decades. The psychological and technical aspects of daily racing in the TdF are reasons enough. How do you attempt to beat a rider like Lance, Contador, Ullrich, the Schlecks when you are 2 minutes down and they are drafting you towards an uphill finish; a complete disadvantage. Even worse LA would have 4-5 drones on a final climb dropping other team leaders (highly suspect but that is another thread). Rewind to 1999 - 2005 and see how Lance and JB analyzed each tour TTT to position their team and Lance on top of the GC early so that they could tempo ride, strategically wait, and 'draft' all other challengers; a receipe for success.

    5. Drafting competitors when leading the TdF after a TTT: to further illustrate this point look at the 2009 TdF. For argument sake lets assume that Lance and Alberto were equal climbers, notta, their strategies for climbing would be based on daily sensations, positioning and any impending ITTs. This would lead to exciting racing as they were in similar leading positions and were theoretically of equal climbing abilities. But, more realistically there is usually only one team leader and if he was on the strongest (TTT) team, and in the lead, then he would have the luxury of having his team ride a more economical tempo race, and follow (wheel-suck) any potential threats. Again look at the 1999-2005 TdFs. Pretty banal racing to watch for me anyway.

    6. Race radios: Firstly, I am against live race radios so I am biased. There is nothing better than having riders respond based on their previous experiences, spontaneous emotions and desires. The arguments of rider safety is pathetic, just increase the number or paramedics, support vehicles... whatever. The teams that want to plan a tour from start to finish and ensure their instantaneous whereabouts of riders are the only ones who complain. That is my bias. Alternatively, during some TTTs, as long as you won or were ahead of another team by 1 second you would receive bonus time. In effect live radios allowed for micromanaging of performances during TTTs to balance efforts, saving energy for an overall benefits. Is this really how we want to watch a the most dynamic, beautiful and hopefully ever-changing races in the world?

    The exclusion of the TTT in the 2010 TdF is a marked improvement and will balance the playing field and favour true individual riders on potentially weaker/poorer teams that can still bring a sprinter to the show. Sorry Saxo Bank, Garmin and Shackers.
     
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  2. gtm

    gtm New Member

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    I'm glad it's gone but TTT's do look cool.
     
  3. ullrichrules

    ullrichrules New Member

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    No doubt! What about have a TTT one week after any tour, with say 10% of the total prize money, and you can only use the riders who actually finished the tour. That way more riders will be asked to stay in the tour until the end to win some of the prize money. They may even use the TTT in the overall evaluation of the best team for that tour...just a thought.
     
  4. gtm

    gtm New Member

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    I think there is a place for the TTT - perhaps on every other tour & have the length limited to 30 K's or so. I think letting them go home & then come back a week later would be logistically a head ache.
     
  5. slovakguy

    slovakguy Active Member

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    simple is always better. neutralise the results of the ttt pertaining to gc status and figure the ttt only for team competition. then should you only wish to compete for the green jersey and have stocked your team accordingly, you can bag the effort in ttt and still have your shot at your prize. and so those with weaker teams will not see their individual chances scuttled because their team is a bit weaker or less coordinated than some others.

    that being said, i really am not saddened by the ttt's exclusion.
     
  6. guncha

    guncha New Member

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    I would prefer prologue TTT. I guess it would more fair racing if they had 10km -15km TTT on the first day and two ITTs (25km-35km and 45km-55km) later in the race.
    If TTT is longer than 25km or 30km then the advantage of certain riders might become too big.
     
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