Will lance win the tour. Ulrich is right on his ass.

Discussion in 'Professional Cycling' started by Trek1987, Jul 23, 2003.

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Will Lance win the tour?

  1. Yes (He will kick Ulrichs ass)

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  2. No (Ulrich will catch him)

    17 vote(s)
    100.0%
  1. Trek1987

    Trek1987 New Member

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    Will Lance Armstrong win the Tour De France.
     
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  2. TbosS

    TbosS New Member

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    My best guess would be that Armstrong willwin from Ullrich. But I think it will be close, so the qualification Lance will kick his ass hardly qualifies.
     
  3. gymbob

    gymbob New Member

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    i think its too close to call - the time trial really suits ullrich but he needs more than 1.07 mins to win, and thats a tough call. ullrichs looking ice cool in interviews though, but i you never know how armstrong will perform when his backs against the wall.
     
  4. TbosS

    TbosS New Member

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    Let's hope for Ullrich sake, that Armstrong is out of adrenaline on saturday. Else it won't be a fair battle. ;-)
     
  5. Zac

    Zac New Member

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    I know alot of people that raced against Lance when he was a kid in Dallas and they all say that when Lance is pissed he channles that to winning a race. I think that he is pretty pissed for all the stuff that has been happening to him lately so he will probably win the TT. Although he won't win it with his usual flair because Ullrich is in awsome form this year and it is relatively flat.
     
  6. Hels

    Hels New Member

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    who care's if it's not a fair battle as long as armstrong beats the german!
    does any1 else agree that ullrich only slowed after armstrong had crashed cos tyler was tellin em all
     
  7. gymbob

    gymbob New Member

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    "does any1 else agree that ullrich only slowed after armstrong had crashed cos tyler was tellin em all"

    absolute rubbish - ullrich was held up by that crash too so technically didnt need to hold back and wait. anyway the crash was armstrongs fault for riding too close to the crowds
     
  8. claggy

    claggy New Member

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    agreed that is rubbish ulrich actually slowed and was looking around for armstrong , hamilton was actually telling basso to slow not ulrich .
     
  9. steve

    steve Administrator
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    Not a hope in hell! ;)
     
  10. tomb

    tomb New Member

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    of course ullrich slowed down you could see him sit up and his cadence slow. to think otherwise is idiotic! Remeber when lance waited for ullrich down THAT mountain descent.
     
  11. steve

    steve Administrator
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    Yep I agree, you could spot this fact the second you saw it on TV.
     
  12. ilovelucy_02

    ilovelucy_02 New Member

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    I believe Lance will win the tour. Last year's tour was so close because of some bad circumstances for Lance (he was sick prior to the tour, he fell in the Dauphiné Liberé, he suffered from dehydration, crash on Luz Ardiden). I think he'll come back stronger than ever in July and dominate the tour like earlier years. The closeness of last year's tour has only motivated him for this year. And in case you haven't noticed, since Armstrong started the tour, Ullrich has always gotten 2nd place. I believe it will be the same way next year.
     
  13. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    As much as it kills me to say this, I think the Texan will be fully focused for the 04 TDF.
    The Texan exhibited last year (2003) that he is susceptible to pressure
    though, and I think Ullrich and Beloki can take heart from this.
    The thought of winning his sixth TDF will make him more motivated than ever.
    The Texan focuses his whole season on the TDF to the exclusion
    of everything else.
    I believe that if Ullrich took the same approach he would beat the Texan.
    Gladly, Ullrich unlike the Texan, views a season as more than three weeks spent in France and does not confine himself to just one event.
     
  14. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I agree whole-heartedly. I've watched that bit of video at least 50 times and I don't see Ullrich slowing. I see him at the front of the group still going. That's what Armstrong later said that he saw and my cycling buddy told me that's what he saw as well. Ullrich wasn't slowing but he did look confused like he wasn't sure what to do. Hamilton rode across the apex of a turn to the front of the whole group (Ullrich included), and reminded them all that you don't take advantage of a crash in that kind of situation. That's when everyone slowed. Hamilton should have been given the credit but the commentators were trying to turn it into a feel good story of a returned favor.

    On the other hand, comparing Armstrong's crash on Luz Ardiden to Ullrich's crash on the Peyresourde is difficult at best. Lance had minutes over Ullrich in the situation on the Peyresourde and had little to worry about. Ullrich was looking at a possible win if he could put a few seconds on Lance by the top of Luz Ardiden. That doesn't change the gentlemen's (unwritten) rules of cycling but it does create a substantial psychological conflict when trying to decide what to do when the decision might make the difference between first and second place.


    ******
     
  15. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    Perhaps Bob Roll said it best, "hope induced amnesia". Winning a sixth will likely be more difficult than the fifth was and there's always the chance that something beyond the control of the rider's will change the outcome but for those not familiar with Armstrong's history, he becomes more determined than ever when the odds are against him.

    Ullrich is undoubtedly an incredible cyclist, (how does he climb in the saddle all day like that?), but Armstrong has shown himself to be as far above Ullrich as Ullrich is above the peleton. If Lance comes back in his usual form and isn't handicapped significantly by a crash or mechanical problem, he'll take six. Don't forget that Ullrich was said to be in his best form ever in 2001 and Armstrong rode away from him like it was child's play. Once Ullrich recovered from his stomach virus in 2003 they said it again, "best form ever" and Lance, despite dehydration, a hip irritation and the remnants of dysentery still pulled off a win.


     
  16. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Beastt,
    The Texan is tougher psychologically than Ullrich - when it comes to the TDF.
    I believe that Ullrich was the rightful heir to Indurain, Hinault, Merckx, Anquetil when he burst on the scene in 1996
    (came second in his first full year as a pro in the TDF !).
    Indurain told me that the reason he retired was that he could see
    Ullrich in his rear view mirror, in Dublin in 1998.
    (What BigMig meant was that his - Indurains - time was finished and that he say the new generation in JU).
    Ullrich then went AWOL in 1998 : and then LA came back to the sport.
    We can discuss the merits of the authenticity of LA's performances, of which I think there are grave, grave misgivings.

    The Texan gained momentum from his victory in 1999 and I believe that we have seen that momentum begin to wane in 2003.
    When you consider an ill-prepared Ullrich, with a cobbled together team, turned in a stellar performance in the 2003 TDF,
    I believe (and sincerely hope) that the reign of the Armstrong will be finished in 2004 and that Ullrich can improve on 2003.
    His ability - his cycling pedigree has been evident from day 1 (unlike the Texan's cycling pedigree - what pedigree ?????).

    Armstrong will be super motivated for 2004 - his motivation is premised upon the fact that by gaining the TDF title he is somehow going to enjoy the respect of all cycling fans.
    The Texan equates that by competing in a three week race, every year since 1999 and winning same, should entail acceptance, respect from genuine fans of the sport of cycling.
    Well, I'm sorry but the dearth of stage race victories between
    1992-1996, simply confirms that doubts that a large number of us have about the Texan's performances since 1998.

    I hope that Ullrich wins in 2004 - I think that if he devotes all his attention to winning the TDF, i think he can win it.
    The problem is, will he decide to do so ?
     
  17. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    Is it just me or does this reflect a concern for where the riders are from more than their riding ability? "Rightful heir"? Perhaps I've missed some deep, spiritual side of the Tour but I thought the rightful heir was the rider who reached Paris in yellow. If not for Lance with the support of USPS, that most likely would have been Ullrich but this is a matter of timing not riding ability. Had Ullrich been born a few years later or a few years earlier, he probably would have 5 Tour de France wins but many riders are closely shadowed as they bring the jersey to Paris.

    I'll assume that the comment referring to Ullrich being AWOL in 1998 meant that he wasn't entirely devoted to the race. He certainly wasn't absent, he was right behind Pantani.

    Ullrich is perhaps the most talented. Even Lance pays him that compliment but it takes more than talent to win and Ullrich is well known for being less than a greately skilled descender and seems to lack the edge required when it comes to tactics as well. Certainly no winner of the Tour de France has done so without the help of his team and Ullrich's short term with Bianchi was very possibly the deciding factor in the outcome of 2003. How often can it not be properly supposed that some single critical factor played a major role in the race outcome?

    Armstrong crushed the competition in 1999. He did the same thing in 2000 with Ullrich ('97 winner) and Pantani ('98 winner) present and he embarrassed them both in Stage 10 when he put 6 minutes between himself and the defending champions. His tactics were unique in 2001 but when he stood near the base of l'Alpe d'Huez and powered away, Ullrich could do nothing but watch him go. The case was the same when Armstrong chased down Pantani on Mont Ventoux in 2000 while Ullrich watched helplessly.

    The 2003 win is the only one in which Armstrong didn't show himself to be clearly stronger, smarter and better prepared than the competition. He's admitted that repeatedly. But he still crossed the line in less time than any of the other riders. Ullrich is a phenomenon, no doubt about it. Armstrong is just that much better than Ullrich. Ullrich had a stomach virus, a new team which failed to fully support him, (at least in stage 19 where 3 Bianchi riders crashed in the same turn yet failed to warn Ullrich). He may well have had other handicaps that were kept secret. Armstrong was also suffering the remnants of a stomach problem as well as problems caused by his crash in the Dauphine Libere. He had hip problems traced to the cleat orientation on the new shoes he switched to shortly before the race and a number of other small problems. All of these things played a factor in the race. That's what the race is. A number of factors, some athletic, some intellectual, some unfortunate, uncontrollable and unforeseeable. The end result is the culmination of all the factors present with a major factor being the ability of the riders themselves.

    Certainly I feel sorry for Ullrich in that he is such an amazing cyclist and if not for Armstrong would probably be a member of the Famous Five club. But try as you might, you can't take away Armstrong's hard-won victories. He's earned every single one of them!


     
  18. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Let me answer the points that you make in chronological order.

    I have absolutely no difficulty with the fact that Armstrong is from
    America.

    The question of rightful heir in my previous mail pertains to an answer that BigMig gave me to a question that I posed to him in Dublin at the start of the TDF in 1998.
    I asked BigMig why he had retired when he did.
    His response was "I could see Jan Ullrich in my rear view mirror and I saw that my time had passed and that he (Ullrich) was the future" (Ullrich was seond in his first TDF in 1996)
    I pressed him on this point and he said that he thought that Urrich was the best talent that he had EVER seen, given his age
    and the length of his career (he turned pro in 1995/96).
    BigNig didn't mention Pantani or Armstrong for that matter.
    This was 1998.
    Therefore along with BigMig and several other notable commentators, Ullrich was regarded as the rightful heir to the lineage of Coppi, Merckx, Hinault, Indurain.
    A far as the cycling world was concerned Armstrong was in treatment for cancer between 1996-1998.

    With regard to Ullrich going AWOL, if you recall he debuted the
    1998 season while seriously overweight.
    Several former cyclists commented that he (Ullrich) was a disgrace for starting the season with being so out of condition.
    Ullrich rapidly lost weight starting 5 weeks prior to the TDF start in Dublin.
    By stating that he went AWOL, I was referring to his over indulgence in food/lack of training during the winter 1997.
     
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