"PRO" Cycling Discussion

Questions about bike hire abroad and everything light bike related. No off-topic chat please

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by Pharmstrong

What KWalker said. Team Sky is backed by UKSI and British Cycling. All the riders have to do is ride, they're incredibly well managed and taken care of. The whole organisation takes a methodic, scientific approach and I personally love seeing it play out.

Hopefully other teams will start catching up. I notice most are now doing trainer warm downs, something I believe Sky was sniped at for doing a few years ago?

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by prendrefeu

It is difficult for other teams to 'catch up' when the large trend points to a lack of consistent sponsorship. With the exception of Sky, budgets are low, confidence lacking. Off the top of my head, I can only think of one other team that has access/backing to a country's training facilities (let alone their staff) - Orica-GreenEdge.

Parity between Sky and everyone else? Not even close. Whether you think that's referring to drugging or their regimen, it doesn't matter. The differences are extreme.

Last year I honestly thought it would be great to see the UCI adapt a new method of hierarchy that blends together aspects of the NFL (American Football professional) system of parity in monetary distribution and recruitement regardless of success along with aspects of professional football leagues (you know, the real football?) where results and either relegate or upgrade a team's tour, and sponsors can still exist across a team however the teams themselves have an "identity" on their own. But, per usual, the UCI can't manage to maintain integrity on its existing platforms so that was a bit of a hopeful wish.
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by Pharmstrong

I don't know about the NFL, but I don't think that sort of consistent franchising is the panacea you're hoping for. There are several teams at or above Sky's level of funding, but none with the apparent organisation or laser focus. Admittedly, aside from Orica they're all fairly standalone organisations, but if a team with a more modest budget like Garmin can employ someone like Robby Ketchell, and devote resources to working with manufacturers like Cervelo and Castelli in creating material gains then other teams can too.

Maybe it's time to bring back national teams for the grand tours?

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by micky

The "problem" is that with Sky being so superior as a team, and the route not ideal for attacks, it will end up being a controlled race=boring.

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by Ahillock

Froome reminds me of a certain somebody with the initials LA.

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by maquisard

UK Postal service, 6.3 W/Kg and loving it.

Froome, Porte, Sky in general, were both on a level above everyone else.

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by 53x12

Thanks Pharmstrong. Was just waiting for Sports Scientists to come out with their analysis. Seems spot on to what many of us have been thinking and seeing with our own eyes. Can't do that kind of performance clean.

Add to that this:

1. Laiseka (2001): 22:57
2. Lance Armstrong (2001): 22:59
3. Froome (2013): 23:14
4. Ulrich (2003): 23:17
6. Zubedia (2003):23:19
7. Ulrich (2001): 23:22
8. Lance Armstrong (2003): 23:24
9. Vinokurov (2003): 23:34

"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

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by pastronef

Sagan wearing a sleeveless gilet today. maybe not that warm on the Pailheres downhill

http://cdn.velonews.competitor.com/file ... 13-061.jpg

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by KWalker

You don't need a country's training facilities or staff, you just need to hire the right kind of people. Keep coaches and trainers separate. Hire coaches that are actually involved in recent research and development. That doesn't necessarily take a ton more cash, but you see the same old former pros as DS/coaches, the same coaches/trainers shuffled around, etc. Sky brought some new blood in on the training side and yah they have the UKSI, but from what you read publicly and what I've been told nothing is inherently ground-breaking about how they coach the riders they're just finally using methodologies that have actually been around for quite some years and applying them. If you want to believe the various quotes about Kerrison all he really did was apply the idea of specificity to the principles of basic block periodization and used basic metrics such as TSS and CTL to make sure riders were actually "training" through training races and kept applying training load throughout the year.

Garmin has had access to the same kind of people and it hasn't really made them what Sky is. Orica is not a bad team, but not necessarily a GC powerhouse (or any powerhouse yet really but probably will be). BMC has tons of money and can't seem to build a decent GC squad or team cohesion. Europcar seems to recognize what kind of talent it has and uses it effectively for appropriate goals. Don't know much about Movistar's innerworkings, but they have a lot of money and seem to do well overall. RSLT's theoretical budget wasn't low, but they clearly couldn't get their shit together.
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by AGW

Wow, so since Sky's tactics are boring to watch, I'm an idiot without any appreciation for or knowledge about the science of sport and the work it takes to for them to bring the heat. Mea culpa KWalker (et al)... :roll:
Last edited by AGW on Sat Jul 06, 2013 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by prendrefeu

Just wondering - since everything seems to be so... excuse the pun... cyclical - were Karsten's pro-Sky arguments any similar to those being spoken when US Postal was around? This is reaching back into the memories of some of the older statesmen here, of course. Just as an observation with history/people/societies... heck, EVERYTHING in the world - it's cyclical and the sad thing is people forget the phrase "we've seen this before..." actually has merit. It always had merit, and it always will (regardless if we're talking about doping in sport, global politics, or fashion trends). Each time the same counter-arguments come up and the cycle continues.
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by tranzformer

The only aspect of technology and training Sky might have an advantage over other teams is doping regimen and protocols imo.

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by mdeth1313

You can think or hope or choose to believe whatever you want, I'm not going to argue about it, I won't even post about it-- I hope they're clean, but as a "recovering" postal/Armstrong fan, be prepared to be disappointed.
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by tcurtbike


I am surprised Jurgen is riding a size small frame, he's around 6ft tall.

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