Can Dodger lead T-Mobile?

Discussion in 'Professional Cycling' started by Walrus, Jan 11, 2007.

  1. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    Michael Rogers stated when he joined T-Mobile that he wanted to be the last man riding at Ullrich's side in the key mountain stages of the Tour. He started to focus on his climbing, and we know he's an accomplished time trialist.

    Presuming T-Mobile remaing "captainless", can Michael Rogers be successful in leading the team in a Grand Tour?

    - He's 27,
    - Has 3 World TT titles,
    - Came 10th overall at last year's tour while supporting Kloden and Gonchar,
    - 2nd overall at 2005 Tour de Suisse, losing on the final stage to Aitor Gonzalez (that year had crazy climbs and a strong field)
    - Won the Deutschland Tour in 2003 against a strong field

    I think Roger's is the strongest GC T-Mobile rider on the roster.

    Thoughts?
     
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  2. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    A good rider but I don't think he quite has it to do really well in a 3 week GT. Not sure if it is a physical or mental thing but I just don't think he's there.
     
  3. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    Isn't 10th last year "really well" considering he was riding for Kloden & Gonchar? I recall him riding on the front a lot in the Pyrenees and the Alps. If it was Kloden and Kessler etc riding for him...I wonder.

    Still, I know where you're coming from.
     
  4. earth_dweller

    earth_dweller New Member

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    Ditto. For some reason, I also don't think he can be a 'great leader' but heck I'd love it if he could prove me wrong.
     
  5. Klodifan

    Klodifan New Member

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    Proficient rider, but I don't think he would have placed higher had he been the leader and not Andreas... Top ten is something to shoot for but a podium finish? I just don't see it...
     
  6. Rolfrae

    Rolfrae New Member

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    He had been working with Checcini - but T Mob put an end to that relationship. Whilst there are still riders in there cheating, Rogers won't win the Tour unless he finds himself another 'good' doctor. If T Mob and CSC are serious about their new blood volume monitoring then neither of these two teams (along with the French teams) will will win a Grand Tour this year.
     
  7. Bro Deal

    Bro Deal New Member

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    Rogers should concentrate on shorter stage races like the Dauphine and Switzerland. Maybe come to California. He could win races like that. Unless he gets on the Armstrong nag-to-stallion dope express, he hasn't got a chance for a GT.

    Maybe he is not on the super dope program like the other contenders. He does not seem to perform well over multiple days. His TTing is not as strong when the TT is in the middle of a race as it is when doing an isolated TT event.
     
  8. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    A few points (and yes, I'm biased cause he's a fellow Aussie :rolleyes: ).
    - He's the best shot that T-Mobile has at a podium
    - At 27, he has a couple of years to reach his prime
    - He's never had full team support at a GT

    I'll stop short of making a silly prediction, but I think we'll see big things from him in 2007.
     
  9. Catabolic_Jones

    Catabolic_Jones New Member

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    He did very well at the Tour last year while supporting another rider (10th place). I am assuming if the entire team supports him, and if he's not required to constantly pace-set and reel in attacks, that he will do much better. I expect him in-and-around 5th place.
     
  10. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    That is an interesting feature of Dodger's performances. Has anyone got a good explanation?

    Does he just not recover as quickly as the GT gurus?
    Is it due to not taking enough drugs?
     
  11. Rhubarb

    Rhubarb New Member

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    I've always assumed it was a matter of peaking. The GT rider’s peak during the GT, Rodgers when focusing on the ITT Worlds would be at his best then.

    That said I guess his focus last year was the Tour, in support for Ullrich, and he didn't bang out any super great ITT's.

    But then also in a support role you're not really trying to kill yourself in the ITT, but saving yourself, unless of course you're a pace setter, in which case Gonchar covered that role for T-Mobile last year.
     
  12. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    No one's TT is as strong in the middle of a GT - :rolleyes: .

    I agree with Rhubarb. From 2003-2005, Dodger was obviously peaking for the Worlds. He only ever rode 1 GT in those years. At the start of 2006 (having just joined T-Mobile), he switched focus. Adding the Giro to his program, coming out saying that he'd been spending more time in the mountains in order to improve his GC prospects. He said he wanted to be Ullrich's lieutenant.

    This meant less time honing his TT form, more time climbing etc.
     
  13. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    But - in a perfect world - the top 5 or so in the middle of a GT would also be the top 5 or so in the World's ITT.

    Dodger goes from World's #1 x 3 to being "a little above average" in the GT ITTs.
     
  14. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    I disagree. The GC champions are able to climb the Alps and Pyrenees, then belt out a solid ITT. Whereas some TT specialists dominate standalone TT's. The two groups perform under different conditions.
     
  15. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    Yep. He's always been a TT specialist who could peak for (and dominate) a standalone TT. Make him climb some mountains...and he's less dominant (but still good enough to minimise losses and stay in touch with the leaders). This is due to his training and focus. Now that he's changed his approach, he's attempting to boost his climbing, whilst still remain strong in a TT...the hallmarks of a GC champ.
     
  16. Rhubarb

    Rhubarb New Member

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    Does anyone know how heavy (kg) Rodgers is?
     
  17. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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  18. Scotttri

    Scotttri Member

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    I like Rodgers, beinga fellow Aussie myself, but i do think he has a lot to prove in the mountains still.
     
  19. whiteboytrash

    whiteboytrash New Member

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    One might remember 2003 on d'Huez..... Rogers dragged Vireque in yellow all the way up (with a pat on the back from Richie V at the finish line)..... Virenque speaks very highly of Rogers and sees him as a mountain man.....
     
  20. Rolfrae

    Rolfrae New Member

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    And Virenque was such a fantastic climber...no wait, I meant druggie.
     
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