Friday, 18 August 2017

Great Climbs Around The World: Furcia

Passo Furcia or Furkelpass (in German) is a pretty hard climb in the heart of the Dolomites.
It leads to the famous climb of Plan de Corones, the theater of  the recent ITTs of the Giro d'Italia,  won in 2008 by Pellizzoti and in 2010 by Garzelli.
Due to bad weather conditions, that didn't allow to climb Plan de Corones, even the top of Passo Furcia itself has been the arrival of a Giro stage, won by Leonardo Piepoli in 2006.
Nevertheless, in my opinion, the Furcia climb must be remembered above all for what Cunego did in 2004.
He attacked in the hardest part of the climb, taking the pink jersey while writing one of the best pages of modern cycling.
Climbing the Furcia, you can still feel the emotions of that day and it is impossible not to try to accelerate a bit during the climb, even just to pay a tribute to Cunego's feat.
Click here for a technical analysis of the climb.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

August Cycling

May not be the green jersey of le Tour de France but it is always a nice jersey to wear in the land of cycling.
Sagan is dominating another race, proving that he is enjoying his good shape.
I don't understand why the team didn't let Sagan defend his European title.
That is a pity but also the proof that this new race has still a long way ahead to become a "classic" of the cycling calendar.
Kwiatkowski took an incredible victory in San Sebastian, enriching the best year of his career.
It is nice to see that the main characters of the month of August are almost the same of the spring classics, just Van Avermaet is taking a longer break.
The upcoming Vuelta is a show not to miss.
It presents a parterre of contenders better than the one at le Tour de France and with roads full of surprises, perfect for clever riders.
It is gonna be great, stay tuned.

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Rider of the Tour de France 2017

Congratulations Froome, you made it!
The Impressionists have elected you as rider of the Tour de France 2017.
You can say what you want but how you can say he is not a champion? In the end he always win and this is what matters.
Poker of Tours and rider of the Tour 2017, what else do you need?

Monday, 24 July 2017

Tour de France 2017 Finale

One of the most boring Tour de France I can remember, due also to the tracery of the organizers, finally came to an end.
The jurors tried to do everything to provide as much French victories as possible, disqualifying and penalizing foreign riders, but, in the end, as always, Froome won.
There is not a big winner of this Tour, Froome appeared to be more vulnerable than the previous editions but none of his opponents has been able to beat him, due also to his incredible team that controlled every single stage.
From this Tour de France comes out a big martyr, the strongest rider on the road, a man that could have easily won this edition of the Tour de France but he was in the wrong team. All our thoughts are for you Mikel Landa.
Here you can find my grades to the teams,  from 1 (very bad) to 10 (very good), you, dear Impressionists, will choose the rider of the Tour de France in the upcoming survey.

Team Sky - 9
They have won their 5th Tour in the last six years this says all. Nevertheless they are a dictatorial regime, there is no space left for unplanned exploits by other members of the team.

AG2R La Mondiale - 8
They tried in any way to win this Tour de France but, unfortunately, for Bardet, even a single kilometer against the clock is too much.

Movistar Team - 5
They lost Valverde during the first stage, the alternative to a Quintana still recovering from a really hard Giro.

Trek-Segafredo - 6
Contador has the heart of a lion but not the legs. They go home with a stage win, at the beginning of the Tour de France they had bigger plans.

BMC Racing Team - 5
They lost their best rider, they didn't have a second plan, they failed.

Astana Pro Team - 1
Is this a team? The strategy was to leave Aru alone as soon as possible? Still wondering...

UAE Team Emirates - 5
A top ten could not be enough for the team.

FDJ - 5.5
They sacrified half of the team with a rider. They won a stage.

Orica-Scott - 7
The white jersey was the main goal, they did it. They could have won a stage.

Dimension Data - 6.5
They lost their main sprinter, they had a second plan, they won a stage.

Quick-Step Floors - 8
They dominated every single sprint they took part. They were helped by a Tour de France with tons of flat stages.

Bora-Hansgrohe - 7.5
They lost their most representative rider after a questionable decision by the jurors. They won another stage.

Team Katusha-Alpecin - 5
They failed all their objectives.

Lotto Soudal - 5
They failed all their objectives.

Team Sunweb - 10
They won, they amused the crowd, they deserved two fantastic jerseys. Team of the year.

Cofidis, Solutions Crédits - 3.5
I discover they were at the Tour when Bouhanni punched another rider.  They disappeared again after that episode.

Team LottoNL-Jumbo - 8
Two great stage win, one of them on le Champs Elysdées, what else do you need?

Direct Energie - 7.5
A memorable stage win.

Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team - 9
Stage win and an unexpected second place in the general classification! What a Tour de France!!

Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team - 4
They failed all their mysterious objectives.

Wanty-Groupe Gobert - 5
Big breakaways but that's all.

Fortuneo - Oscaro - 5
Breakaways, that's all. I expected more.

Friday, 14 July 2017

How Long Will This Charade Last?

The jurors continue taking shameful decisions trying to help French riders win at the Tour de France.
Bouhanni did something definitely worse than Sagan and he is still in the race, Bardet took a bottle just like Uran Uran, Bennet and Pauwels but the Jury "did not see".
My question is: is this a World Tour race or the aim of the organizers is just to have a ridiculous French parade?
The race, so far, make me leaning towards the second option.

Monday, 10 July 2017

How Many Riders Will Arrive In Paris?

This is the question murmured on the roads of le Tour de France.
One of the most boring Tour de France I can remember is being sadly animated just by bad crashes.
Nevertheless, they are part of cycling, as mechanical problems.
That's why I think that the weeping Froome should not have complained with Aru about his attack.
Following the policy of Froome I don't understand why the Tour is continuing on Tuesday with another stage. We should suspend the Tour and wait 30 days 'til Porte is fully recovered and ready to battle again. Ridiculous.
I don't even understand why the other contenders did not help Aru in the only true attack of the day at the yellow jersey. They preferred to wait for Froome and to be humiliated by him.
Condator is a former champion that is facing his natural decline and Quintana is still recovering from one of the hardest Giro of all time.
They had a chance, they missed it.