Velominati Super Prestige: Vuelta a España 2017

Holy fuckballs. I’ve never been this late ever on a VSP. I mean, I’ve missed them entirely – which is another kind of incompetence entirely – but I’m shocked at how quickly this week blew by me. I think I have whiplash.

Be that as it may, the Vuelta is on our doorstep, and before you panic, I’ll leave the picks open until Monday so we have enough time to screw up our picks despite knowing who crashes out in the first few days.

This is actually exciting stuff. We have some serious grudge-matching going on here for the Vuelta. Chris Froome is double-talking, Bardet is trash-talking, and Contador is exit-talking. This could be interesting.

On the subject of Bardet, he is my new Schleck. I love how he looks on the bike, and he’s got a fighting spirit. And he rides a white bike, which is the color bike I’m obsessed with. And I’m equally sure he will never win a major bike race, on account that I fancy him. (Roman, if you are reading this, I ask your forgiveness.)

Alright, I’ll stop faffing about. Check the start list, get your picks in, and let’s get this party started.

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172 Replies to “Velominati Super Prestige: Vuelta a España 2017”

  1. Damn fine result today! Does anyone deserve a GT stage win more than Thomas de Gendt? No-one, that’s who. The guy’s been busting his balls since the start of the Tour.

    Nice effort by Bertie today. A lot to play for on the Angliru tomorrow. The final classification isn’t set yet – although my VSP was doomed from the start.

  2. @RobSandy

    @Rick

    @Cary

    @Rick

    This is the attitude that is ruining Grand Tours. If Lemond would have had this attitude he The Professor would have another Tour win.

    I am not trying to pick on Kelderman, many riders seem to have this attitude these days.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/kelderman-i-will-fight-for-the-vuelta-a-espana-podium/

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/kelderman-nibali-and-zakarin-are-my-vuelta-a-espana-rivals-not-froome/

    0

    i blame the rise of data-driven cycling for this, and many other ills. data clearly works, though. Kelderman is likely correct in his assessment.

    0

    It is not just Kelderman. It is Uran sucking wheels the entire Tour, happy to finish second by less than a minute. Data isn’t it is the riding to finish second or third or tenth that is ruining the sport. I blame the everyone gets a trophy culture.

    0

    I guess the value of a result, any result, to the team and the rider also contributes. These guys will get a big paycheck for finishing top 5 or top 10 -why risk that trying to challenge the race leader?

    If you get it wrong you can really fall from contention – see Adam Yates and Chaves.

    0

    That is my point. No one races anymore.

  3. @Rick

     

    0

    That is my point. No one races anymore.

    0

    Not sure that’s true. Zakarin and Kelderman have a pretty good low-key battle going on. But the only one’s racing to win are Froome and Nibali, for sure. And Contador is racing everyone.

    They need to have a good long look at Rule #70.

  4. @RobSandy

    @Rick

    Chapeau, Senor Contador.

    0

    Hear, hear.

    Also, if VSP gets scored, I have the top three in the right order.

    0

    Congrats to you, Sir. I had the first two in order and Zakarin in fourth. His attack yesterday sunk my chances.

  5. @Ron

    @davidlhill

    @Cary

    for me, excessive focus on hr and power has sucked a bit of the joy out of some group riding, and even watching certain races. i know people that cannot talk about anything else on a group ride. i have seen SO many crashes and other avoidable blunders on local rides due to lack of proper awareness and focus. indeed, the idea that made the Velominati rules, and this community so attractive to me initially, was the embrace of the ride, and the awareness and soft focus necessary to fully EXPERIENCE it. cycling on many levels, has turned into a live action SIMS game

    Agreed. I for one have removed my bike computer. I let my phone record my ride so after I’ve finished I can see how far, how hard, how fast I went. During the ride I go with feel.

    0

    Uh, as someone who still loves the size, simplicity, and durability of plain old Nokia “brick” phones, how does this work? Do you need a sensor on the bike or can the phone do it alone?

    I like to know distance and total time, for fun and for charting parts-life, and would LOVE to get even my basic computers off the bike. Please enlighten me.

    0

    Teocalli is right – I have a smartphone. My newer one is far better on battery life, especially as the screen isn’t on. I start the ride, start the app, turn off the screen and put the phone in my back pocket and forget about it. I also take a small external battery as the law of states that the one time it does kill the battery is the one time I need the phone to work as a phone!

  6. @Rick

    @RobSandy

    @Rick

    Chapeau, Senor Contador.

    0

    Hear, hear.

    Also, if VSP gets scored, I have the top three in the right order.

    0

    Congrats to you, Sir. I had the first two in order and Zakarin in fourth. His attack yesterday sunk my chances.

    0

    Nice.  I had Contador correct in fourth, NITRO’d Froome and Nibbles.

    Summing up the Vuelta, I’m still not a big Froome fan, but the man deserves respect.  Got the sprinter’s jersey in the end, too.  Contador was fun to watch as he went out fighting.  I keep thinking how the race would have gone if he hadn’t had such a bad day on Stage 3.

  7. @MangoDave

    @Rick

    @RobSandy

    @Rick

    Chapeau, Senor Contador.

    0

    Hear, hear.

    Also, if VSP gets scored, I have the top three in the right order.

    0

    Congrats to you, Sir. I had the first two in order and Zakarin in fourth. His attack yesterday sunk my chances.

    0

    Nice. I had Contador correct in fourth, NITRO’d Froome and Nibbles.

    Summing up the Vuelta, I’m still not a big Froome fan, but the man deserves respect. Got the sprinter’s jersey in the end, too. Contador was fun to watch as he went out fighting. I keep thinking how the race would have gone if he hadn’t had such a bad day on Stage 3.

    0

    I agree regarding Froome. He is a bike racer, period.

  8. Froome is surely a champion.  i was rooting for him to win this Vuelta.  he’s taken so many shots at this race, you know this was a big deal for him.

    i mean look at the guy.  he looks like a survivor of some POW camp.  he’s walking the walk, in terms of what it means to be a Tour champion.  maybe he’s even redefining the term.  he, Bardet, and Contador have made this a very interesting summer.

  9. @Cary

    Re-reading the Hardmen and wonder whether Froome will make it to the next one. When Sky mentioned he wanted to take the double, I thought, OK that will happen and soon he was already leading the GC as if it was effortless. I think a bit more drama and showing of a bit more suffering would improve his image.He’s a good cyclist for sure.

  10. @KogaLover

    @Cary

    Re-reading the Hardmen and wonder whether Froome will make it to the next one. When Sky mentioned he wanted to take the double, I thought, OK that will happen and soon he was already leading the GC as if it was effortless. I think a bit more drama and showing of a bit more suffering would improve his image.He’s a good cyclist for sure.

    0

    Froome is a champion, of that there’s no doubt. One of the great GT riders? Certainly, and a Giro win would cement that. Hardman? Hmmmm . . . not so sure. Age will catch up with Froome and as dominant as he has been, he’s not getting younger and the competition seems to be stiffening.

    I’m still very meh about him though. He doesn’t get me as emotionally engaged as say Dumoulin, Bardet, and a host of other riders.,

  11. @wiscot

    @KogaLover

    @Cary

    Re-reading the Hardmen and wonder whether Froome will make it to the next one. When Sky mentioned he wanted to take the double, I thought, OK that will happen and soon he was already leading the GC as if it was effortless. I think a bit more drama and showing of a bit more suffering would improve his image.He’s a good cyclist for sure.

    0

    Froome is a champion, of that there’s no doubt. One of the great GT riders? Certainly, and a Giro win would cement that. Hardman? Hmmmm . . . not so sure. Age will catch up with Froome and as dominant as he has been, he’s not getting younger and the competition seems to be stiffening.

    I’m still very meh about him though. He doesn’t get me as emotionally engaged as say Dumoulin, Bardet, and a host of other riders.,

    0

    I found it hard to like him but he’s been chipping away; attacking over summits and with Sagan last year, letting Aru know who was boss at the tour this year and not being content enough with the double that he had to get stuck into the sprinters going for the points jersey. I can’t help but like that.

     

  12. @chris

    @wiscot

    @KogaLover

    @Cary

    Re-reading the Hardmen and wonder whether Froome will make it to the next one. When Sky mentioned he wanted to take the double, I thought, OK that will happen and soon he was already leading the GC as if it was effortless. I think a bit more drama and showing of a bit more suffering would improve his image.He’s a good cyclist for sure.

    0

    Froome is a champion, of that there’s no doubt. One of the great GT riders? Certainly, and a Giro win would cement that. Hardman? Hmmmm . . . not so sure. Age will catch up with Froome and as dominant as he has been, he’s not getting younger and the competition seems to be stiffening.

    I’m still very meh about him though. He doesn’t get me as emotionally engaged as say Dumoulin, Bardet, and a host of other riders.,

    0

    I found it hard to like him but he’s been chipping away; attacking over summits and with Sagan last year, letting Aru know who was boss at the tour this year and not being content enough with the double that he had to get stuck into the sprinters going for the points jersey. I can’t help but like that.

    0

    Agreed. I think this year, in both the Tour and Vuelta, the victories didn’t come quite so easily. I think if he wins a GT with a scrappier, come-from-behind performance, that’ll win over a lot of folks.

  13. @wiscot

    Ok, ok. I’m a bit busy at work and don’t have time to pen an article on this. While Froome’s Tour-Vuelta double is amazing, it pales into comparison to Giovanni Battaglin’s 1981 Vuelta-Giro double. Fortunately, the good old “comic” Cycling Weekly has done the honors.

    http://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/grand-tour-doubles-giovanni-battaglin-825

    Impressive or what?

    0

    super impressive.  also impressive, this year’s Il Lombardia route:  http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/il-lombardia-returns-to-the-muro-di-sormano-and-como-finish/

    if it’s a dry race, this will be one for the ages.

  14. from Iljo Keisse’s Kamioenschapp van Vlaanderen Strava.  this parcours looks like a LOT of fun.  195km or rollers.  yes, please!

  15. Hey all! Sorry I’ve been MIA of late. Changed jobs at the end of June. My daughter’s high school golf season was August-September. Just had a lot of stuff going on. Fortunately, time enough to ride. Just ticked over 4,000 miles for the year yesterday, so everything after that is a bonus. My and rest of the PEZ crew’s thoughts on El Pistolero’s retirement. I know Alberto can be a bit of a polarizing figure, but I can’t help but like him. Cheers!

    http://www.pezcyclingnews.com/features/adios-alberto-the-pez-crew-looks-back-at-his-best/#.Wc1hCkyZPdQ

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