Velominati Super Prestige: Tour de France 2016

A lot has happened in the last ten years of le Tour, and a lot of it stemmed from the race that took place in 2006. At the time it seemed like yet another “Tour of Redemption” as the organisers liked to claim every few years after something had happened to tarnish the race’s image, yet again. In 06, we were coming off the back of a seven year reign of very little in the way of competition, with most of those races decided in the Prologue and followed by a three week procession. 06 was anticipated as the start of a new era, we just didn’t know at the time how significant it would become many years further down the track.

The pre-Tour build-up had fans frothing with anticipation of an Ullrich vs Basso battle, but that was scuppered at the 11th hour by Operacion Puerto, just what incoming Director Christian Prudhomme didn’t need. Also ditched were Fransisco Mancebo, a young Alberto Contador (yet to be considered a GC contender), and one Alexandre Vinokourov (while not one of the Puerto accused, still unable to start as most of his Astana teammates were pulled, leaving him without a sufficient team). With the two favourites out, the race was anyone’s for the taking. Of course, there was more drama to come.

A crazy break was let go and produced a surprise leader in Oscar Pereiro, who then conceded the yellow to Floyd Landis, who then blew to bits and handed it back to Pereiro, before making the biggest comeback since Lazarus the next day and riding away from the race in a solo effort that still ranks as one of the best ever, no matter how juiced he was. I remember watching the stage live and talking to a mate on the phone, and his incredulity at what we were witnessing. As Landis drank with the fervour of an alcoholic and manically poured water over his head during his escapade, my friend (an ex-road racer at a high level himself) professed that Landis was “cooking” from some sort of drug cocktail and was doing his best to dilute whatever concoction he’d taken, and not blow a positive or do a Tommy Simpson on live tv. How prophetic his words proved.

Of course, that was just the beginning, and the resulting fallout became one of the biggest sporting stories of all time. Landis just about brought down the entire sport with his revelations, and no Tour since has been without some form of scuttlebutt, yet not on that scale. The last few years, while tame by comparison to those preceding them, have been pretty well dominated by each winner and not offering too much in the way of exciting competition; although last year’s end result was closer on paper than the actual race was… which once again leaves us in the same state of anticipation that grips us every year in the month leading up to the start, and then promptly lets us down about two weeks after that, and wondering when the Vuelta starts.

This Tour has all the hallmarks of potentially being a great one, with three guys who have to be considered genuine contenders, yet just one who is most likely to win. We really do need a positive test to liven this one up, or someone to juice themselves so comprehensively that the motor in their seat-tube can’t handle the power from their legs and melts the carbon around the bottom bracket and drops onto the road at the summit of Mont Ventoux. Maybe try and blame it on a chimera twin that drank too many whiskeys the night before and left their bike in the team truck with a bag of someone else’s piss strapped to it. That would bring the crowds back. But seriously, if each of the contenders is on form, we could have one of the best races of the last ten years with some real proper drama played out on the roads, not in the labs or courts and not two, three or seven years from now.

We’re giving you plenty of time to ponder the possibilities, and maybe come up with your own hare-brained scenarios as to what may unfold, or what will most likely bring you those precious VSP points and the honour of wearing the Maillot Jaune for the next year. Will you be daring and go out on a limb that doesn’t resemble that of an anorexic spider? Will you take short odds on a short-ass? Will you stake your claims on claims of a steak? Or will you tear yourself apart with internal conflict like a couple of bitchy Italians?

Whatever you do, there is absolutely no excuse to Delgado this one, we’re giving you plenty of time and it’s not like you can claim you didn’t realise that the race was this week… and don’t whinge if this Start List changes before the racing gets underway, it is provisional after all. Good luck and may the best, or second best, man win.

[vsp_results id=”49193″/]

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585 Replies to “Velominati Super Prestige: Tour de France 2016”

  1. @wiscot

    Dan was born here in Wellington, New Zealand and is the son of a guy I used to race against and the grandson of my first cycling sensei – it’s super cool to see him doing so well!

  2. @Nicholas Collins

    @Barracuda

    Same for me.

    Delivery to Australia no problem at all.

    Thanks Frank

    Same here. It’s simply the lengthy time it takes, with no updates between order and delivery. My first order took over 6 months to arrive, the second about 5. To be fair, this is basically a glorified fansite (and I mean that in a wholly positive way) and so we can’t complain too much.

    However, how hard is it to ask the supplier – “where in your queue is the V-Kit?” and then send out an update?

    I’m about to place a V-kit order – since it’s for winter kit I do hope it will arrive by September!

    Cheers,

    David

  3. @Barracuda

    @ChrisO

    @Buck Rogers

    @Amy

    @frank

    Hello, still trying to get my money back from you for the product I paid for, that you never delivered. A bit of research is showing me that I am definitely not the only person you have done this to.
    Hey, kudos to your business plan – take money, deliver no product – nothing better than pure profit right?? But I don’t want to part of your plan. Please send my money back.

    DAAAAh-Am!!! Talk about awkward call out!

    I can say in Frank’s defense that while it takes a while to get something, it does always eventually come.

    Ummm…

    Awkward yes, but I can understand her frustration.

    FWIW, never had an issue with any of the gear I’ve ordered.

    My orders have always been promptly filled.  Thanks Frank

  4. @frank

    New leader in the TdF VSP after GvA crushes it to a V minute lead overall. And Holy Fuckballs, so much for my prophecy of an Italian Giro/Tour double. C’mon Nibbles. WTF.

    Nibbles must have read your post!!!  I think we are seeing why he let off the gas earlier.  Stage win today perhaps???

  5. WTF happened with the Flamme Rouge? Missed it when someone had the temerity to ask me work related questions.

  6. @Oli

    @wiscot

    Dan was born here in Wellington, New Zealand and is the son of a guy I used to race against and the grandson of my first cycling sensei – it’s super cool to see him doing so well!

    Wow, incredible to be that close to a guy riding that well! Very cool. And even better that he’s from all the way down in Wellington. I keep on hoping I hit the lottery and can relocate to NZed.

  7. @The Pressure

    @Barracuda

    @ChrisO

    @Buck Rogers

    @Amy

    @frank

    Hello, still trying to get my money back from you for the product I paid for, that you never delivered. A bit of research is showing me that I am definitely not the only person you have done this to.
    Hey, kudos to your business plan – take money, deliver no product – nothing better than pure profit right?? But I don’t want to part of your plan. Please send my money back.

    DAAAAh-Am!!! Talk about awkward call out!

    I can say in Frank’s defense that while it takes a while to get something, it does always eventually come.

    Ummm…

    Awkward yes, but I can understand her frustration.

    FWIW, never had an issue with any of the gear I’ve ordered.

    My orders have always been promptly filled. Thanks Frank

    Here is my take on this: Unless I’ve been asleep in the drops…I’ve never seen much community interaction out of Amy. Maybe a silent member, but I don’t understand why you’d want to rep a Community if you aren’t an active member. Seems odd to me.

    Secondly, this is first and foremost a Community of chatter, feedback, advice, and rides. If you are in need of a new jersey, I can think of a few other places to get one quickly. The LBS comes to mind. The V-gear is just an added bonus, while the main course is sharing passion for cycling. (this can even be done naked, but please only from behind your monitor and not out on the open roads…)

    Next, I received my gear in a timely fashion.

    Finally, he has a personal email listed. Email big fucking Frank directly instead of taking it public and demanding your money back. Pretty, pretty, pretty sure scamming people is not how the Dutch Monkey has chosen to make a living…

    Besides, there are much easier ways to endear yourself to the Followers, like shouting over the VSP. Let’s get back to it!

  8. I can understand Amy’s frustration, but suspect (being a Level 4) she’s a newbie. If you’ve been around these parts long enough, you know that a V-gear order doesn’t get turned around in a week or two. A quiet e-mail to Frank would have been a better way to go. Maybe Amy also doesn’t realize that Frank actually has a real job and that everything he, and the Keepers do for this site is out of love for cycling and our odd little community.

    On a happier note, I’m old enough to remember when British contributions to the Tour were very modest. A Millar win in the 80s was something special and a thing of wonder. (Let’s try and forget ANC Halfords, shall we?) but for British riders to win 4 of 7 so far with the prospect of more to come, is quite incredible.

  9. @ChrisO

    Daryl Impey climbing with Navarro and dropping Nibali.

    Errr, right…

    I don’t know much about Navarro (a stage win in the Vuelta, no?), but this might say more about Nibali’s shape than anything else?  Or more contaminated capsules, you think?

  10. @wiscot

    I can understand Amy’s frustration, but suspect (being a Level 4) she’s a newbie. If you’ve been around these parts long enough, you know that a V-gear order doesn’t get turned around in a week or two. A quiet e-mail to Frank would have been a better way to go.

     

    Maybe she has.

  11. @andrew

    @ChrisO

    Daryl Impey climbing with Navarro and dropping Nibali.

    Errr, right…

    I don’t know much about Navarro (a stage win in the Vuelta, no?), but this might say more about Nibali’s shape than anything else? Or more contaminated capsules, you think?

    Dodgy pharmacists are everywhere… if you know how to find them.

  12. @andrew

    @ChrisO

    Daryl Impey climbing with Navarro and dropping Nibali.

    Errr, right…

    I don’t know much about Navarro (a stage win in the Vuelta, no?), but this might say more about Nibali’s shape than anything else? Or more contaminated capsules, you think?

    the way the peloton rode the last climb, very slowly, allowing riders to escape off the front etc also made it easier for the riders from the break to stay away. The climb itself is only steep at the top and Nibali is clearly not at his best, the stage was not particularly difficult (49kmh+ avg) – one big climb at the end, all these factors I think made both Cummings and Impey look better climbers than they are, Awesome rides from both.

    GVA, what a stud! That’s how you defend a jersey and take one for the team. Can’t wait for Andorra.

  13. When inflatables attack! This story and more ridiculous shit to be afraid of slathered all over your local and national news broadcasts. Please, somebody do a compilation video of these inflatables and their attacks.

  14. Looks like Froome’s been practising his descending. Pedalling away while sitting on the top tube a la Sagan.

  15. @LeoTea

    Looks like Froome’s been practising his descending. Pedalling away while sitting on the top tube a la Sagan.

    Impressive stuff!

  16. @Teocalli

    @LeoTea

    Looks like Froome’s been practising his descending. Pedalling away while sitting on the top tube a la Sagan.

    Impressive stuff!

    Looks like Froomie has just won a LOT of new fans today.  I was NEVER a fan of his but I have to give the man his due.  THAT was fun and exciting racing–two words that I have never before associated with Froomie.  Chapeau to him!!!

  17. @oldensteel

    When inflatables attack! This story and more ridiculous shit to be afraid of slathered all over your local and national news broadcasts. Please, somebody do a compilation video of these inflatables and their attacks.

    Yup!  Prepare thyself for the attack on the tubs!

    A subject of debate around here almost as bad as sock length (and colour–although the True Velominati know that there can be only ONE colour)!!!

  18. @Buck Rogers

    @Teocalli

    @LeoTea

    Looks like Froome’s been practising his descending. Pedalling away while sitting on the top tube a la Sagan.

    Impressive stuff!

    Looks like Froomie has just won a LOT of new fans today. I was NEVER a fan of his but I have to give the man his due. THAT was fun and exciting racing–two words that I have never before associated with Froomie. Chapeau to him!!!

    This!!  Plus in the interview he said he was “just having fun”!!   Brilliant !

  19. Freaking brilliant “sprinting” for the polka dot points on the penultimate climb. That allowed him to spring the sneak attack on the Peyresourde. That was calculated and brilliant, Quintana was caught out………absolutely brilliant tactics!

  20. @Oli

    Sheer panache. Brilliant stuff, Froomey.

    Hear, hear! I think we’re seeing a new, more aggressive Froome. Punching a spectator (deservedly so, IMHO), attacking on a descent (unexpected,) holding off the top quality bunch (amazing), more aggressive victory salute (excellent). To paraphrase Alice Cooper, “No more Mr. Nice Guy”?

  21. Well as someone who’s quite keen on Mr Froome…I wasn’t expecting that! From him or Sky.

    Chapeau.

  22. @wiscot

    @Oli

    Sheer panache. Brilliant stuff, Froomey.

    Hear, hear! I think we’re seeing a new, more aggressive Froome. Punching a spectator (deservedly so, IMHO), attacking on a descent (unexpected,) holding off the top quality bunch (amazing), more aggressive victory salute (excellent). To paraphrase Alice Cooper, “No more Mr. Nice Guy”?

    The best thing about it was seeing him be such a nice guy in the interview. He looked like he was really enjoying himself rather than being the robo cyclist that he has seemed to be in the past.

     

  23. The FROOMANTULA ! What a blast ! What a riot ! What a hoot ! A full on attack across the top and DOWN the mtn in the aero tuck pedaling away and we can only imagine what in world everyone was thinking… Huhhhhh ?? He had to have been practicing/preparing for that in a big way. No one pedals away in the aero tuck like that for as long as he did. Ohhhh man… and does anyone have any idea what the wee Columbian has in mind for tomorrow?? He has to be thinking, well, well, well… if he’s not attacking then he’s conceding. The Sky train is so strong and Mr Froome is doing them justice. That was cool. Very.

  24. @RobSandy

    By the way, anyone pick Pinot for their VSP? Yak yak.

    I have Pinot and Porte…..the letter “P” has not been a good pick for me.

  25. That descent…  *whoa*

    Silly me…expecting today’s climbing to be nothing more than a parade of GC contenders playing “chicken” with each other.  Quintana got caught with his pants down at the top of the final climb.

  26. @Rick

    @RobSandy

    By the way, anyone pick Pinot for their VSP? Yak yak.

    I have Pinot and Porte…..the letter “P” has not been a good pick for me.

    I have Pinot, gave up on Porte and TJVG a long time ago, the more I have seen of that last climb I really wonder how tactically aware Quintana is, he covers attacks from Bardet and Henao why? The only guy he HAS to cover is Froome and he let him go.

  27. @piwakawaka

    @Rick

    @RobSandy

    By the way, anyone pick Pinot for their VSP? Yak yak.

    I have Pinot and Porte…..the letter “P” has not been a good pick for me.

    I have Pinot, gave up on Porte and TJVG a long time ago, the more I have seen of that last climb I really wonder how tactically aware Quintana is, he covers attacks from Bardet and Henao why? The only guy he HAS to cover is Froome and he let him go.

    I also wondered why he covered Henao’s move, no reason to do so. I can somewhat understand not allowing Bardet to go, but you make an excellent point.

    I also do not believe for a second that Froome’s move on the decent was a spur of the moment thing. His “sprint” for the KOM points on the penultimate climb was a setup for his move on the Peyresourde. Rumors are that he had a 54 front chain ring for a mountain stage-that move was calculated for months.

  28. Bertie gets in to the team car. Sad to see.  Had been sick since yesterday apparently.

  29. @Rick

    @piwakawaka

    @Rick

    I also do not believe for a second that Froome’s move on the decent was a spur of the moment thing. His “sprint” for the KOM points on the penultimate climb was a setup for his move on the Peyresourde. Rumors are that he had a 54 front chain ring for a mountain stage-that move was calculated for months.

    Yep, doesn’t seem likely it was spontaneous. But if it was planned, or if it wasn’t, it still caught everyone napping. And worked.

  30. Movistar have 2 people up the road and don’t have them hold to support Quintana.  What’s that all about?

  31. Just because

    VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Smiling Nairo Quintana
    2. Lightbulb rooter
    3. Martin
    4. Richie Rich
    5. Fabio faces Aru
  32. Opps, Multiple Martins, of course

    VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Smiling Nairo Quintana
    2. Lightbulb rooter
    3. Martin Dan
    4. Richie Rich
    5. Fabio faces Aru
  33. Rest day  swap: Contador withdraws – Bardet is in.

    VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Froome
    2. Quintana
    3. Bardet
    4. Aru
    5. Yates
  34. VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Froome, Christopher
    2. Quintana, Nairo
    3. Majka, Rafal
    4. Yates, Adam
    5. Van Garderen, Teejay
  35. VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Nairo Quintana
    2. Chris Froome
    3. Romain Bardet
    4. Diego Rosa
    5. Warren Barguil
  36. whats the deal if I move a riders position and do a swap.

     

    Ie. Move 3rd to 5th and put a new rider in 3rd? Is that two swaps? = ten points?

  37. I don’t usually do rest day swaps but I might as well drop Contador…

    VSP PICKS (1st Rest Day Swaps):

    1. Froome
    2. Quintana
    3. Adam Yates
    4. Aru
    5. Dan Martin

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