Pro Cycling Thread 2024

Woah, just caught up on this thread. I think there’s a lot of water to go under the bridge before you start calling Kuss a GC contender.

He, by his own admission, doesn’t cope under the pressure, and if it wasn’t for political correctness and the opponents all sort of whiffing, he’d have had two teammates that would have ridden up the road.

The controversy is a weird one, I understand the “don’t attack a teammate in the lead” thing, but also, putting a climby domestique in a break and into the lead has been a tactic in many races. Usually to launch the actual leader later. This Vuelta is weird.

2 Likes

That’s funny, because the Vuelta arguably had the best GC start list of any GT this year. The only person missing was Pogi which admittedly is a big miss, but every other top rider is here.

#GC Kuss is also a meme and has been for a long time, you can’t take every statement in here literally. There are certainly some who aren’t joking, but I think the majority of us know this is most likely a one and done.

5 Likes

I know what you’re saying, but realistically, the other teams protagonists all faltered in a big way. Geraint had a mare, Ayuso was ok but isn’t the second best GC hope for UAE, Evanepoel was all over the place - definitely not Giro form. Now, we had the two best GC riders outside Pogi here, but they were hamstrung by politics in the end.

1 Like

Few of whom were on form and even fewer whose primary goal this year was this race. It’s the last race of the year. Just throw them all in. Why do I say that? Look how many of them crushed it: the first week.

So on paper it was a stacked field perhaps.

We’ll never know how Remco would have fared in the Giro until the end. He did well until the point where it stopped being tailored-made for him. He remains untested on a full three weeks against top competition and/or all signs point to him not being able to perform consistently for all three weeks. Even nkw, instead of testing himself day in and day out against the top riders, he chooses to go on a who cares chase for the mountain points jersey which, like the QST blockade the day before the meltdown, doesn’t spell self confidence no matter how many times he hits his chest or points to his head.

As I said before, he either makes huge progress in that regard or he’ll be chewed up in next year’s TDF.

1 Like

Sorry, I missed the Rog going to the TdF part. Yeah, Kuss would be the logical choice but I have a hard time picturing Jumbo going with that strategy given Vingegaard’s dominance.

I don’t agree with the arguments that seem to try to lessen Sepp’s accomplishment thus far. Primarily:

  1. The GC contender list was stacked in the Vuelta. Full stop. Everyone is tired. Few did all 3 tours. Sure, what if Evanpoel didn’t have a bad day? What if Sepp didn’t get in that break? What if Geraint Thomas didn’t crash? Stuff happens. And circumstance and luck almost always have a hand in shaping the leader board and strategies.

  2. Sepp’s win is NOT gifted. Sepp earned a sizeable lead. He won a stage, did a great time trial, defended every attack from other teams, and was able to defend his jersey against his own team’s attacks. He hasn’t yet had a bad day. Attacking your own teammate who is in the lead and not imploding is not how cycling works. I am no traditionalist, but if you want to go against how it works, then come out and say it. Every tour winner needs his team. It is the heart of Jumbo’s strategy. Not just in the closing KMs but to own and manage the race all day, day in and out. Not just in a weak GC moment, but to prevent weak GC moments from happening.

I do fully agree that this situation was caused by 3 main events - a lack of DS decision-making and leadership, the JV/Primoz battle for team leader (also a result of the gap in DS leadership), and a stronger than excepted Sepp who hasn’t yet cracked. Hoping all of this is behind us for the final stages and chapeau Sepp!

13 Likes

:100: - Remco, Auyso, Geraint, Mas, Alemeda, etc showed up to win. They prepared to win, for many this was the explicit focus of their season.

The fact that they had bad days or misfortune is part of the race- one of the absolute hardest things about winning a GT is that you have to avoid all that misfortune for 3 weeks. Luck pays a part but it’s also much more than luck. It’s skill, it’s preparation, and it’s consistency.

Moreover - prior to the 11th hour intervention, his own team who consist of the 1st and 3rd best GC rider in the world went all in to win and Sepp held them off.

As I have said many times I don’t believe this is the dawn of the #GCKuss era, and for transparency I think Jonas could have won this Vuelta if he wanted to, but Sepp put on a truly incredible performance and has earned this (hopeful) win every single bit as much as the overwhelming majority of past winners.

6 Likes

I’ve been seeing lots of posts/tweets/comments on how Jonas could have won this Vuelta as opposed to Roglič. The implication being that Vingergaard was the strongest.

I’d caution anyone extrapolating this from the current GC placements, since:

  • Up the Tourmalet, Vingergaard was allowed to go on and win for his daughter. Roglič stayed back with Kuss and clearly both of them had more to give.
  • On stage 16 up Bejes, which is claimed he wanted to win for his teammate, Roglič showed reluctance to also come off the pack until Jonas’ advantage blew up.
  • Before all this, when Jonas’ wasn’t doing well at all, Roglič never took advantage of it.

The suggestion that were they racing, Roglič would have been unable to counter Jonas seems to be little more than speculation.

4 Likes

Hell of a turn from Thomas!

3 Likes

Who am I to criticise an athlete lick Roglic, but being at that level he must stop hitting the deck, or y’all don’t remender he did it at the very first day? It might be a complicator for recovery, then Kuss made his way up… just fantasizing something, although it’s true that he goes to the ground quite often.

He does seem to crash more often than others, as does Thomas. Over the long term, I am sure there is more to it than coincidence. In roglic case he didn’t grow up as a cyclist if I recall correctly.

1 Like

Kaden Groves walking on water was impressive!

1 Like

I still don’t agree on the stacked field, but leaving that aside, I was thinking more about all the Comparisons with Froome and Wiggins etc. in those instances the domestique was pulled back, for whatever team managership reason - most likely because their was a known hierarchy and froome was still unknown. Kuss being asked to launch the actual GC riders wouldn’t have been unusual except for the aesthetics of it and people wanting Sepp to win.

Either way, congrats to Sepp.

1 Like

Was Sepp’s Mom there at the finish today (Saturday)? Great end to the season for Jumbo Visma’s workhorse. Now he can retire to the US LT series…

2 Likes

Would be great to see Sepp vs. Keegan at Leadville

4 Likes

A lot of people have speculated that he is one of the few (potentially only?) guy who could challenge Keegan at Leadville.

1 Like

https://www.instagram.com/p/CxQ-yTBrLY8/?igshid=MzRlODBiNWFlZA==

The Hype is Real

6 Likes

Love the GC Kuss sticker. Also the pink-yellow-red stripes and wheel details for the GT sweep. Coolest bike in the peloton tomorrow. :sunglasses:

4 Likes

My random vuelta thoughts…

Long term domestiques are the backup nfl quarterback of the pro peloton. Most popular guys and must have a personality that suits their role

GC kuss is still a meme and I don’t think it’ll happen again. I’m overjoyed he got this opportunity and win

Every major gc team sucked at tactics in this race. They should be thanking jumbo for occupying the media’s coverage

This race was much more engaging because of all of these mistakes and if jumbo was as disciplined as they could’ve been we would all be complaining about how boring it was

Anyone who tells you the strongest rider should win hasn’t raced in a while. Races at every level require tactics and/or teamwork as much as they require fitness. Likewise, team dynamics carry over beyond a single day, race, and season

Kuss was not gifted this win. Throughout the entire three weeks he was varying from first to third strongest rider on his team (and in the race). Tactics and the race situation led to his win but his strength made that possible

13 Likes