How many TdF Lance will win?

Discussion in 'Professional Cycling' started by allgoo19, Oct 12, 2003.

?

Will Lance win more titles?

  1. 5 meaning he won't win again.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. 6

    39 vote(s)
    28.1%
  3. 7

    76 vote(s)
    54.7%
  4. 8

    24 vote(s)
    17.3%
  1. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    But Richard Virenque rides for Quickstep-Davitamon so he'd be doing something very weird if he was helping Jan.:(
     


  2. leif_ericson

    leif_ericson New Member

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    What makes you judge that the opposition was much tougher?
    Regardless of opposition strength, I'm pretty sure that the Giro routes of 92/93 weren't nearly as hard as the Giro of today.
    About Pantani's double... the 98 tour wasnt very clean. Some 'enhancements' (that really help recovery) that are tested for now, weren't tested for then.
     
  3. apolack1

    apolack1 New Member

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    really? I thought he was signed to t-mobile. Who won the polka dot jersey last year? Does that person ride for t-mobile? Anyway, the point was t-mobile has a lot of all stars, a lot of guys who would be team leaders anywhere else. So getting them to sacrifice for jan is going to be hard. You think these guys who are usually trying to win the entire thing will be content without even going for a stage win?
     
  4. yayaya

    yayaya New Member

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    Yeah its easy to say that your going to sacrifice your chances but a little harder to acutally do, just ask Bernard Hinualt.
     
  5. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    In my opinion Bugno, Rominger, Roche, Chiapucci, Fignon, Kelly,
    LeMond, Delgado (all around in the late 80's/early 90's) were
    tougher, more consistent, opposition to what is around today.
    The route for the Giro in the early 1990's was tough (Dolomites
    etc were included in the route).
     
  6. apolack1

    apolack1 New Member

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    This years giro is pretty hilly if i remember correctly, should be good... if any of the top guys were racing it.
     
  7. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Maybe Merckx had this goal in mind at the starting line that day. I wouldn't be surprised. Three jerseys is hardly senseless if you know you can do it.

    It sure would be neat to see the video of that day complete with the buildup from the other stages and the players in the game.
     
  8. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I voted for seven but that will depend, of course, on whether or not he wins in 2004. I'm thinking he learned from mistakes made before the 2003 TdF, including being overly confident during his training for that year. Lance, like anybody, loves to put his name in the record books and this would be the most substantial of all the records he has set. I think he wants it badly enough that Ullrich will find himself exhausted and able to do nothing to answer as Lance stands on his pedals, dances out a cadence and drops Ullrich, panting in his wake. Time will tell.

    Lance has stated that a big determining factor in whether or not he rides the Tour in 2005 will be whether US Postal signs to sponsor the team for another year. If they don't, then Lance may well retire after 2004 which means he won't try for seven wins, (assuming he wins a sixth this year). Hopefully, he'll have the support he wants, the determination he's famous for and the form he had every year from 1999 to 2002.
     
  9. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Yes, I've tried everywhere to see if I could locate a video about this particular TDF :
    Cycle Sport february 1998 did the top 50 cyclists of all time as voted by readers EM was naturally Numero Uno followed by Hinault, Indurain, Coppi, Anquetil, Van Steenbergen, Van looy, leMond and finally Rominger:

    EM Tourmalet 1969 "On the Tourmalet, EM is seen to be fiddling with his gears. His rivals assume that he is looking to get lower gearing but instead he changes on to a higher gear ratio
    53 x17 (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) and is seen again only at the
    finish in Mourenx, 140 kilometres later, where he finishes
    8 and a half minutes ahead of the field"
    Phenominal !!!
     
  10. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    53? Wow! The CANNIBAL eats them alive once again.
     
  11. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Yeah, 53 x 17 gearing is phenomonal when you consider that it's the
    Tourmalet
    that Merckx was climbing (I'd use 53x17 on the flat !!).
    It just doesn't bear thinking about.

    In that edition of Cycle Sport - Merckx gives an extensive interview about his career.
    In it, he explains that he himself doesn't fully understand what motivated him to win.
    He says that he always felt the passion to 'flog himself' while cycling and
    this meant trying to blast all opposition in every single race.

    Asked why he took part in so many races each season (icluding CycloCross), Merckx explains
    that he always had weight difficulty and the only way to control his weight was to burn more energy.
    He said that it was true that he did used to search the cycling calandar to try to find more
    races to compete in - so as to satisfy his need to be challenge and to keep his engine ticking over

    Talking about his serious crash in 1969 (when out derny training, his suffered a broken pelvis),
    Merckx claimed that he was never the same cyclist since that crash.
    Merckx said that after the crash he suffered from back problems and his climbing prowess was not as complete as before.
    He states that if he had not suffered this injury, he would have won more races (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).
    He said that because he began to suffer back pain more - he was forever tinkering with his bike, position, equipment etc.
    (His wife concurs with this - Claudine Merckx says that Eddy used to get up in the middle of the
    night and go down to his bikes and would on occasion actually strip his bike down and rebuild same !).Merckx agreed that he wasn't the most easy person to live with during his career - his life was focussed on his bike.
    (Ernesto Colnago @ www.cyclingnews.com tells the story of how, when Merckx joined an Italian team,
    got his first Colnago bike : he said Merckx came to Italy to visit him at
    his factory and would spend hours talking to him and his staff about the bike.
    Colnago built him a bike which EM intended to use in the Milan San Remo - before using it Colnago wanted EM to test it.
    When Colnago arrived at EM's hotel with his new bike, the receptionist told him that Merckx had left at 5.00am that
    morning for a training ride, this was two days before the race !
    Merckx was doing a 370 Kilometre (370 !!!!!!!!) training ride - 2 days before a classic).

    Merckx goes on to state that neither money nor fame were the reasons for his competitiveness.
    He said that insecurity - fear of failure - is probably what drove him.

    Merckx goes on to talk about his hour record attempt at Mexico.
    He explains that the year in which he did it was a reasonably successful season (nice understatement).
    After winning 4 classics - the TDF and the Vuelta - he decided to have a go at the hour.
    He explained that he was determined to break world records for 5,10,20 kilometres.
    He said that the Hour record was his toughest hour ever on a bike.
    he said that the pressure to break the record, the fact that he had to break
    also 5,10,20 - all made his attempt more pressurised.
    He said that when he finished, he could not sit down for 4 days afterwards !

    With the benefit of hindsight, he says that he wished that he had enjoyed his career more.
    He stated that although winning is very satisfying in itself - he says that he wished he could have
    had a more relaxed relationship with Gimondi, Ocana, Anquetil.
    He said that when he was cycling, he could only view them as rivals.
    Now, although he is friendly with Gimondi, he says that he wished he had taken more time to get to know Anquetil.
    He said that he always like Ocana as a person and that they had become close
    after they retired but he wished
    that Ocana would have turned to him for help with his depression (Ocana committed suicide).
    He says that his life is now more about giving back to people - he said that he is happy to do a lot of charity
    work and that he likes to be with cyclists of the modern era.
    Of the modern cyclists, he says that he is on good terms with Hinault and Indurain.
    He says he particularly likes Sean Kelly - as he feels that Kelly is a
    throwback to previous eras.
    (remember this interview is 1998).
    He says that he hopes LA returns to the sport and that he visited him in hospital.

    Finally, he discusses Axel and he says that he never put pressure on him to cycle, knowing his reputation in the sport.
    He explains that Axel wanted to try cycling after giving up soccer.

    He finishes the interview by saying that he wished to see the top men in the sport cycling in more events.
    He felt that there is too much specialisation.
    He said that if he was arouund in this era - that he would partake in more races than the current
    generation but that he would not replicate his program form his career in the 1990's.
     
  12. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    I said it before and I'll say it again . Win or lose Armstrong will be forced to eat Crowe.
     
  13. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    That's interesting what he said about keeping the weight off. He sure was very lean. I think that's a huge advantage when you consider not only the decreased mass over the mountains but also that your body will stay cool a lot easier if your body mass is very low. I don't think Axel is nearly as diminutive as Eddy was.

    To be able to train so hard and avoid overtraining and burnout is incredible. It makes me wonder whether the propensity to get fat is linked to an ability to train without burnout. I remember Indurain also had trouble with weight. He too turned out to be a great endurance champion. Lance Armstrong had the same trouble.

    I haven't met Sean Kelly, but I know his brother. He's really a cool guy. I think I knew him about a year before he mentioned his brother was Sean, probably because I kept mentioning cycling all the time. He, on the other hand, played hockey.

    What Eddy says about being more relaxed with the other cyclists is wishful thinking though. Now it would be even tougher. Can you imagine being very jovial to Lance if you were Jan Ullrich after Lance turns around and gives you his patented "lookback" before he goes on to destroy you while you fall apart on the last leg of a climb through the Pyrenees or Alps? I think Eddy, from what I have read, is very human. From someone who has the winningest record in cycling, he still focuses on how deeply humiliating defeat can be for the other riders; he wants to console them. He vented his outrage at the media for putting undue pressure on Pantani, blaming it for Marco's downfall and demise. I admire Eddy as a cyclist, a champion and a man. But feelings aside, I most enjoy watching and reviewing his amazing rides.

    Thanks for the in depth discussion on Eddy Merckx.
     
  14. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Thank gntlmn.
    Yes, I've managed to build up a lot of writing about EM.
    I think that the man is really legendary - in a sport full of great men.
    I've met him twice and I have to say on both occasions he was the most humble of men.
    I don't know what it is about him - he comes across as being very
    understated.
    I hope that this doesn't come across as patronising but I've been
    lucky to have met the great champions Fignon, Roche, Kelly, Merckx and Hinault.
    If you put them in aline up - I think he would be the least likely person who people would judge as being the greatest cyclist of all.
    His demeanour isn't arrogant in any way.
    In fact, I met him in Caarick On Suir at Sean Kelly's last race as a pro.
    They were all there.
    Yet, Eddy made the least fuss on the day (he flew in on his private
    jet to be there for the race in December 1994).

    His ability to cycle and to train - is hard to articulate.
    The sheer ability to outclimb the greatest climbers season in,
    season out was what really impressed me.
    OK his cycling on the flat was never in doubt.
    But for a big man (6 ft 1 inch), he could stay with the goats with relative ease.

    I think our sport does take Eddy for granted.
    In no other sport apart from Cricket has one person dominated the game (Sir Don Bradman).
    Eddy's palmares totally and utterly outstrips Hinault, Kelly combined !!!!!!
    I would like to see our sport venerate the man more.
     
  15. DiabloScott

    DiabloScott New Member

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    I once read a story in which one of Eddy's coaches said he saw him eat 10,000 calories in a single meal! The man was a metabolic machine!
     
  16. 76Olym

    76Olym New Member

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    5 wins would easily refute your opinion on the subject.

    Well, I certainly woudn't expect the Canadians to bitch about it, since they can't deliver a serious contender that places, much less a TdF winner
     
  17. leif_ericson

    leif_ericson New Member

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    In talk about whether Armstrong is as good as the others...

    from cyclingnews interview in 2002...

    Q: Last year after the Tour you were asked how you ranked with Anquetil, Merckx, or Hinault. You gave a yes/no answer. How do you feel this year?

    LA: A yes and no answer... I think I said last year that in this era of cycling, I don't think there is a patron, or it's possible to have one. The field is too deep. Cycling is different now than it was when Bernard Hinault raced, or when raced Eddy raced, or when Anquetil raced. It's very different. It's not easy to control 180 guys, or when it dwindles to 160 or 150. You be proclaimed the patron, but you can't control them if their team is in need of a stage win, and you say let's take it easy. They're going to attack. They don't care what you say. That's fine; that's sport, and this is big time cycling now. There's pressure from the sponsor, pressure from the team, pressure from the director. We could have Bernard Hinault back in the race, they wouldn't listen to him either. They wouldn't listen to Eddy Merckx. Not in the Tour de France. It may be different in the Giro, maybe in other races, but not in the Tour.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/road/2002/tour02/?id=diaries/lance/lancearmstrong026
     
  18. kjellquist

    kjellquist New Member

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    <<Even though he keeps making all these best athlete awards, most americans dont know who he is >>

    For the record...this is simply not true...most Americans clearly know who LA is...he would not be on Leno otherwise.

    <<The only place his love life makes headlines is in europe.>>

    Again..this is also not true...small wire stories are always popping up about LA & Sandra B, LA & Sheryl Crow...etc.

    <<There are no major races>>

    Tour of Georgia, US Pro Championships, T-Mobile in SF...things are not great, but there ARE major races.

    << no real way for the average american to acend to professional status.>>

    What is a real way? How did LA, Tyler, George, Bobby J and most recent Tom Danielson get signed?

    Here's a real way....Go from Cat 5 to Cat 1, turn pro domestically, win races, hope Europe notices....it's not easy and nobody said it would be, but it's a "real" way.
     
  19. dannyhobart

    dannyhobart New Member

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    i can't really speak for anyone else, but during my racing career, i raced as a cat 2 when i was 17 thru 19. i was pack fodder in mass start races, but excelled at time trials, coming in no lower than second (riding 18-34 cat 1/2's) and that was to a (at the time) national team member.

    point being, i raced and trained amongst this rank and never used 'performance enhancers'. i'm sure people do, but i do have faith that there are people out there who can just simply do it.
    what exactly were you taking, anyway?
     
  20. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    I agree, he must be a freak - eating 10,000 calories.
    Maybe this was his secret - he ate well and thus had to burn it.
    Either way, his physiology must be exceptional.

    I have a copy of Cycle Sport from the 1990's where they have a comparison between Anquetil, Merckx, Hinault and Indurain.
    They take their respective physiological records and compare and contrast them.
    Indurain's has the largest lung capacity of them all.
    He is also the tallest of them.
    Hinault had the highest VO Max !
    But Merckx had the best averages of them all with regard to the cumulative rating for VO max, lung capacity, heart rates etc.
    I'm only sorry that I never actually saw him race - live - in his prime.
     
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