He's always ridden like that when he's going well.
He just looks happier, which bodes well for his season. All those years of pressure at Movistar from a very young age, with Valverde sniping from behind, must've taken a toll.
Owain doull wins the stage from a breakaway.
Which means CCC remain the only WT team without a win so far this season.
I know. If CCC win before the 23rd of the month, then that will be a record in terms of all teams winning a race. With riders like GVA and Trentin, you'd think they'll get a win somewhere soon.
I was not impressed by Lutsenko managing to stick with Carthy all the way up the climb, and the out sprint him at the top.
Why? Lutsenko has won on summit finishes before, and he always starts the season strongly.
Sure, but would never have guessed he’d be able to hold his own with a proper climber climber like Carthy.
It was a fairly short climb I guess.
Yeah, just 10 k at 10% pretty much.
Come on, he rides for Astana... what could possibly be dodgy there?
We can be suspicious, but without proof we have to assume they are not doping. It's not like Lutsenko has come from nowhere, he's been a pro for 7 seasons now I think, and has a lot of decent wins, i.e. something like 25 wins, which for a rider who isn't a specialist is pretty impressive. Most of his wins come in the early season too, he's obviously a rider who likes to start his season strongly.
As I recall, Astana riders were going well and winning lot of races at the start of last year too and it drew the inevitable suspicion out of the cynics, including myself.
Fool me once
doubling your points in the season after your best season ever, at age 34, that's a steep curve.
I guess if we take a step back, nobody bats an eyelid when riders become super strong at Deceuninck Quick Step (and reverts to lower performance when they leave) but eyebrows are raised when they do the same with Astana. Vino could be their worst asset.
I don't think riders improving from a high level is that uncommon, i.e. you could make the same argument for Thomas as an example.
We have every reason to be suspicious about unexpected improvements and teams whose attitude towards doping isn't as robust as others, but, as fans, there isn't anything more we can do to address this. Instead we have to trust that the UCI's anti-doping team are increasing testing on those riders who are showing unexpected improvements, or teams who show big improvements, i.e. like NTT this year.
Added: I realise this might be naive, but I genuinely think there has been a fundamental change in attitudes towards doping by a generation of riders and it is much less prevalent now than it was ten years ago.
So far as we know Deceuninck didn't have any riders being investigated by CADF for Ferrari dealings. Maybe that'll just turn out to be a disgruntled rider stirring shit or maybe in 10 years we'll find out there was another massive EPO ring, micro-dosing riders left and right to win win win, baby. I mean, toss a coin.
much less prevalent now
much less prevalent now
Unless you're a rider in Costa Rica.
Or Team Sky...
and this is not why I'm moving to Spain...
i think we can believe (hope) that things are better and that clean riders can win, but keep a healthy dose of cynicism when it comes to certain performances. Still watch and enjoy the sport but remain ready for the whole thing to be upturned at a moments notice. I dont think its going full "clinic" to do so.
healthy dose of cynicism
healthy dose of cynicism
I definitely have an unhealthy dose of cynicism but I'm pretty sure it's within WADA limits...
the truth (IMO) is probably that doping is still widespread, but the levels you can get away with are much much less and so there are far fewer donkey to racehorse scenarios. So it is possible to win clean, but it is also possible to gain an extra few % if you are willing to risk it
If it’s your opinion then it’s not the truth. That aside, what level of doping is your widespread threshold, 10%? 25%? 50%?
It's my opinion of what the truth is........ Haha
Ive always followed Fuglsang quite closely as hes always seemed to be unfortunate in either not being given the chances that his talent deserved or having unlucky crashes or injuries on the rare occasions that he was given the chance to lead the team.
Despite this, he still had some pretty decent results, 4th at Amstel Gold and Giro de Lombardia, won the Tour of Luxembourg and 7th in the Tour de France so its not like he came from nowhere.
Effectively he has always been a Danish super domestique, usually for Nibali, in an Italian run team and only really got a shot at being a proper team leader (not just in the odd race but with the whole team built around him) when Scarponi very sadly passed away, leaving Astana with a shortage of proper leaders.
He has certainly stepped up and while you can of course look at Astana's dodgy AF record on the doping front, I'd like to believe that there is some reason to Fuglsang's late success other than doping
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