Velominati Super Prestige: Paris-Roubaix (Keeper Tip Hotline)

Velominati Super Prestige: Paris-Roubaix (Keeper Tip Hotline)

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We are quickly arriving at what is, for any Velominatus, the end of the most awesomest week of the year.  There have been emails and comments flying around within the community so we thought it would be fun to publicize our plan for honoring the Hardmen of the Cobbles this coming Sunday.

So, with that, we launch the first Keeper Tip Hotline.  For those of you who are inclined to leave a comment, please do so and tell us what your plans are and who you are tipping for the podium.  Top five places are scored; whoever has the highest cumulative score will get an Obey the Rules prize.  Scoring simply runs in reverse order; 5 points for first, 1 point for 5th.

Update (13 April 2010): This competition has been renamed the Velominati Super Prestige.  More information on this competition and current results can be found on the Velominati Super Prestige Page.

// The Hardmen // Velominati Super Prestige

  1. Rats…I missed the predictions. Watching the race, in licensed premises, after a ride out on some local punishing pavé was a pure joy though.
    Cancellara is close to godliness right now. We thought maybe he went a little early but then he just dieseled off into the distance…splendid.
    Nice to see our own Roger H hang on for 4th after all the work he put in for big Thor.

  2. Brett I saw that cow thing happening and it was strange I found myself screaming at the TV “George you freakin idiot pay attention to the race”!!

    I think the brain is a fragile organ and all those cobbles messed up some riders ability to think – like Boonen – hello, do all that work at the front and then go sit in the back??? He deserved to lose.

    Thanks Johno but in the end without rain and with Fabian still on perfect stroke/peak form Marko is the man.

  3. @brett

    Yea, perhaps I deserve that a little. He had the form going in but not the hardman skills. We’ll watch him in the future.

    I was happy to see Thor in there mixing it up for second. And old Tommeke, where was that guys team support? Stijn? No effin way. QuickStep in not a classics team this year aside from Tom. Poor fella was trying to rally the group to catch Fabian. They knew better though. I nominate Spartacus for flahute status.

  4. By the by, I was digging the Milram Focus cross bikes. Looked like SKIL/SHIMANO was riding them too.

  5. @Marko
    I beg to differ. LeMond was a hard man. In his early years, racing over the stones like no American had before. He then won the tour (twice) shot through like swiss cheese with lead pellets all over. Very hard.

    We’re just jaded by the fact that the guy is such an amazingly enormous twatwaffle nowadays.

  6. @Joe, @Rob

    Cancellara was amazing. Boonen, I think, lost his morale after working so hard and having no one else help out; I think he let it frustrate him. And then the way the group refused to work was an example of professionals at their stupidest. How can you let a man like that up the road and still think it best to play tactical games rather than to work together to bring him back. Twelve riders (or whatever) to one should have been able to shut out even the Great Spartacus.

    But, Boonen, was broken and I think he went to the back to recoup and BANG! Fabien saw his chance. And then he finished ‘er off in great style. Amazing.

  7. @frank

    interesting point. i suppose turing into a twatwaffle doesn’t negate hardman status (eventhough he doesn’t have the greatest of palmares in the classics). no doubt he was a badass though.

  8. @Marko
    Trudat. He tried so hard and those idoits all pulled a Hincapie. Serve’s ‘em right. Hushovd and Flecha were a class below Fabien. Interesting nomination on Flahute status, though. I think we need to wait another season and see what he does next year. He’s definitely a candidate, though.

  9. @frank

    I don’t think we need to wait until next year. Two wins in the velodrome and the Ronde-Roubaix double in dominating fashion is impressive. If he cooks the rest of the peloton over the cobbles at the tour I think flahute may be in order.

  10. @all

    Well, I tallied up the points, and it looks like Rob “The Stroke” won the Paris-Roubaix edition of the Keeper Tip Hotline. The podium was rounded out by Marko and Brett:

    1. Rob, 7 points
    2. Marko, 5 points
    3. Brett, 4 points

    Rob, I’ll be mailing you an “Obey the Rules” bumper sticker.

    We’ll be continuing The Keeper Tip Hotline for the major races throughout the season and tallying up the points as we go, ending with the Giro di Lombordia. At the end of the season, the reader with the most points will receive a free Velominati shop apron.

  11. @Marko
    So, is Boonen a Flahute? Surely two Flanders crowns and three Roubaix titles deserves the nomination as well?

  12. @frank

    Sure, why not, plus he’s Belgian. What get’s me excited though is the relative youth of Boonen and Spartacus. These next few springs could shape up to be classic duels in the spirit of RDV and Merckx. Throw in a few modern-day Ballerinis, Mosers, Maertens, and Tscmill’s and we could be at the dawn of another legendary period for the classics.

  13. @Marko
    Yeah, seriously. How rad is that?

  14. Not surprisingly, Flecha was once again blamed for destroying the chances of the other riders in the chase. That guy is not a hardman. He’s more like a crusty man. Boonen:

    It was especially Flecha. When I attacked I was confronted with the headwind and with Flecha on my wheel. I can understand you ride tactically if you’re riding for the win, but not for second, fifth or twentieth place. That’s not important. It’s only the first place that matters.

    Boonen was so annoyed, he didn’t even want the podium.

    More at CyclingNews.com.

  15. @Joe
    Joe, I think you had the best Sunday experience of all of us. A great cobbled ride through English country and then watching the race at a pub…you are a Velominatus of the highest order.

    http://www.rapha.cc/hell-of-the-north-1/?cm_mmc=email-_-nl090410-_-textlink4-_-hell

    As soon as I started to watch the race and saw Tommeke I thought, Jesus, what an idiot, of course Boonen will win this. How could have I bet against him? And Breschel didn’t even finish! Damn.

  16. I lost all respect for Boonen after those comments. Yeah, they all should have worked to catch Fabian, but I think they knew the jig was up as soon as he got over 40 seconds up.

    Do you think Flecha was being a bit narky with his applause coming over the line? Apparenty Thor told him he was cramping on the way in, so he couldn’t do any pulls… bike riders eh, what a bunch of c**ts!

  17. @brett
    I’m starting to wonder if that Dirty Harry doesn’t have a point after watching the way those rider rode!

    I still love Tommeke no matter what; he’s my boy. And I think Flecha rode like the stupid idiot. Sure, after the gap was over 40 seconds, it was over – that’s why you fucking close it down right away.

    It’s so frustrating when we all see them make those mistakes, but the bottom line is that Fabien won fare and scare. Funny, last time he won there was a whole fiasco behind him as well. Seems like he just destroys this race when he’s on.

  18. @brett

    You know, I kinda thought the same about Tommeke. What he said after the race was pretty different than his tone before the race. Not really walking the talk so to speak.

    @frank

    When 1 guy destroys the whole peloton like that there’s bound to be some misplaced frustration and catfights. Fabian is the only guy coming out of yesterday with any shred of dignity. And whoever said Hoste is a pussy is correct.

  19. @Marko
    I think we need to look at Tom’s track record of being a good sportsman; after every defeat, he’s the first to say he was beaten fair and square. In fact, he says he still wouldn’t have won even if he’d been able to stay with Fabien. This is the only case I know of where he’s bitched about the bunch; I think it’s safe to give him the benefit of the doubt and take his word on what the mentality in the group was. Now, if it was Hincapie, I’d completely agree with you – but this is one of the most stand-up, good sports I know of in the peleton.

    And Hoste is a pussy Рon the order of Hincapie, if I may say so. Even in the pre-race interviews, Hoste and Hincapie look like a couple of scared goats who just saw a plate of sliced tomatoes and ch̬vre.

  20. As the newbie here I would like to thank the Great and all Velominati for making this years P-R a memorable experience. I have enjoyed the subtle and not so subtle debate. I am in for the summer long competition because I could really use a new shop apron and like the bumper sticker I will display (if I am that lucky again, sorry Marko) it proudly!

    Keep perfecting “The Stroke” – Rob

    P.S. Boonen is prime for nomination but personally I have to wait for him to come through with something more like past performances, after yesterday he seemed very non-Flahute and if that continues …. If you stop pulling at the front you are allowed to take a rest, but come on, you are always ready for the counter attack. I mean it was dry there was only internal pressure and although he had no help he was strong enough to chill and wait for others to initiate a move. Can you tell I am disappointed in his mental fortitude and that takes into account that they had gone further at that point than I have ever (even in the day) ridden and I was guilty of those split second misjudgment in more races than I care to admit – but he is an experienced Pro, aaargh.

    P.P.S. the above “Hoste and Hincapie look like a couple of scared goats who just saw a plate of sliced tomatoes and chèvre.” so well said I thought the same less poetically.

  21. @Rob
    Cheers to your win on the innagural Keepers Tip Hotline. Well done, even if you didn’t pick the winner. You deserve a nod for that hardman ride you did over the weekend. Now, off to the Ardennes and ToC.

  22. Oh yeah, check out the Welly-Roubaix ride we did on Sunday…

  23. Marko,
    Thank you – very gracious of you and any nods should be tempered by the fact that we stayed on the dead flat part of Long Island.

    Brett gets the Hardman award, nice one! That is what Long Island looked like 100 years ago…

  24. @frank

    Bro,
    The description of your pre-race ritual is awesome. Wish I was there with you to ride the Seattle cobbles, sip espresso, and drink ales, in no particular order. I raise my ristretto to you sir! And to the hardmen of Spring. And, finally, to real hardmen http://www.mountainproject.com/v/bob_bickford/106338419

  25. @Spankles
    Those were the days, man. Early morning rides, espresso, hardman it on the hills. Always rolling up to the big climb saying, “Yeah – no – not riding it hard this time. Just spinning up.” Then rounding the bend and seeing it rise up and we both knew it was on.

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