Velominati Super Prestige: 2011 Clasica San Sebastian

Velominati Super Prestige: 2011 Clasica San Sebastian

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The Velominati Super Prestige continues with it’s typical post-Tour follow up, Classica San Sebastian. The race isn’t normally given much credit, though it stands out as the first major classic of the Summer season. It’s unfortunate that the race suffers from the ill effect of being overshadowed by the Tour; if it occurred anywhere else in the calendar I think it would stand out as one of the most exciting races of the year due to it’s tough route and unpredictable finish.

A race favoring the climbers, this tough parcours typically favors a strong finisher who can climb well but win from a small group. But this race is perhaps the hardest to judge because, coming so closely after the Tour, rider’s form is difficult to gauge because riders who ended the Tour coming into good form should be able to carry it for another week and factor in the finale. But freshness can’t be overrated and there is also the possibility that riders who rode the Giro and skipped the Tour will be finding themselves with good legs.

Only the race will tell. Can the Schlecks rubberneck their way to a much-needed win? Or will Canhego take his good form and fast finish to the bank? J-Rod, assuming he races (I can’t be bothered to look it up), will be on home turf and fresh after the Giro; this could be his year.

This winner of this Super Prestige edition will again earn an “Obey the Rules” bumper sticker  and all reader’s points qualify towards the final prize of the free Velominati Shop Apron.  As always, if you are inclined to enter, simply post your predictions for the top five placings in the form below. Make your picks by 5am Pacific tomorrow, regular VSP Rules apply.  Good luck!

// Velominati Super Prestige

  1. @Steampunk

    @mouse
    And not a lot of strategy from Gilbert either in most of his wins this year. At the start line: “So, just so you know, I intend to go for it from about 4k out. Try to keep up. But you can’t; I’m going to bury you.”

    Oh that is gold. The thing is, he is the only one that can pull it off. I am sure plenty have said and tried. Oh maybe only Merckx could have…

    Oh My Merckx…I have just realised. Philly Gilly is the Son of Merckx. IT’S THE SECOND COMING! All Praise be to The Father (Merckx) the Son (Philly Gilly) and the holy Goat!

  2. @ChrisO

    Even the pros seem to be in awe of Gilbert.
    This from David Millar and Ryder Hesjedal on Twitter.
    “And @ryder_hesjedal gives QUOTE OF THE DAY: ‘I hope he gets his big contract and chills the fuck out, he’s making us look stupid.’ True dat.”

    The Son of Merckx, he can be no other. Respect.

  3. Am I the only one getting tired of watching him win all the time?

  4. @RedRanger

    Yep.

  5. @RedRanger
    Certainly. He carries himself with panache. People discuss tactics and the like, but cycling is an endurance sport. Ultimately, the goal is to destroy everyone else in the race. You can win with your mind to garner a crafty victory. However, is not the most beautiful victory crossing the line alone after having inflicted a degree of pain on your competition such that they have broken?

  6. Me love you long time…

  7. @Collin
    IMHO, professional bicycle racing is a thing of extraordinary brutality, occasionally performed at an incredibly high level by a select few individuals who inflict such terrible pain. The wake of destruction they leave only heightens the beauty and the majesty of it all. I can’t get enough. A-Merckx.

  8. @Cyclops
    Is he imagining Princess Leia? Looks a helluva lot like Jabba the Hutt to me.

  9. @Collin
    Jabba was definitely more than two months from peaking.

  10. @RedRanger

    Am I the only one getting tired of watching him win all the time?

    yes

    Dr C
    Associate Altar Boy to the New Minister of Pain and Humiliation, Phil Giblets

  11. For those who love watching Fast Phil dishing the pain ….

    La Fleche Wallonne last kilometer 2011

  12. Ah that Fleche Wallonne last K was pure gold.

  13. @RedRanger
    I’m really enjoying it, to be honest!

  14. I’m starting to be a bit worried about the state of the Italian professional cycling scene…

  15. @Pedale.Forchetta
    What, no real contenders at the moment and none really looking like they’ll come through?

  16. @Xponti

    Oh My Merckx…I have just realised. Philly Gilly is the Son of Merckx. IT’S THE SECOND COMING! All Praise be to The Father (Merckx) the Son (Philly Gilly) and the holy Goat!

    Settle down. Merckx won classics like Gilbert, except he would also have won either Flanders or Roubaix, probably MSR, the Giro, the Tour, and would be well on his way to also winning the bulk of the Fall classics, the Worlds, and a whole shitton of small races along the way that no one cares about.

    @RedRanger

    Am I the only one getting tired of watching him win all the time?

    Nope.

  17. @Collin

    @Cyclops
    Is he imagining Princess Leia? Looks a helluva lot like Jabba the Hutt to me.

    A+1

  18. @Pedale.Forchetta

    I’m starting to be a bit worried about the state of the Italian professional cycling scene…

    This happened to the French when they backed off the sauce as well. I think it’s no wonder that the countries who work the hardest at fighting doping go through a dry spell. They’ll turn around and the wins will be good ones. And, Nibali should be good in the Fall Classics.

  19. @Jonny
    Apart from Nibali not much on my radar…

  20. @frank
    I really hope you are right!

  21. @Pedale.Forchetta

    @JonnyApart from Nibali not much on my radar…

    well, if you are going to have a trump card in your hand, you might as well have the most stylish descender in the World

  22. Alright, so it is Monday for me and I just finally got the chance to watch the final 9 k, via Sporza feed, in Flemish. However, I knew what happened and, more importantly, how it happened and who Did This To Them. As Ryder says, he’s making other very strong PROS look like stupid dicks.

    On that feed from 9 k to 5.8 k, the camera just shows Barredo. Then, at 5.8 k the Man in the Belgian Champion kit makes his first appearance. Ugh oh. Then the camera moves forward, revealing that he has the wheel of a teammate. Ugh oh. You guys are fucked. He’s just going to go and see if you can chase him.

    When Gilbert entered the camera like that, it was like the cowoboy in black just walked into the bar. He’s bad to the bone.

  23. Oh, and I just got in 50 k this morning, my first proper solo road ride in my town in over three weeks. It was amazing, mind shut off, legs went, on a nice bike, having a good time.

    And I realized the article on urban riding, plus the conversations afterwards made me a better busy-area cyclist today. I rode more aggressively defensive, instead of passive-aggressively defensive. I used to expect the drivers to take care around me, then get pissed if they didn’t. Today I let them know, with hands, a look, a signal, what I was doing at all times. Most were very cool, one or two who ignored my “suggestions,” but hey, it worked most of the time.

    Did have one near right hook. Driver sped up to pass me, then turned right RIGHT after passing me, as I was whiping my brown on my shoulder. Phew. It only takes a second, constant vigilance is a must. Cars, pedestrians, and squirrels + deer for me today.

  24. @Ron

    When Gilbert entered the camera like that, it was like the cowoboy in black just walked into the bar. He’s bad to the bone.

    Nice analogy! +1 Ron

  25. @Dr C

    @Buck Rogers Strong work, determined – did you climb out the toilet window and leg it to the nearest MacDonalds to make your pick?More to the point, did she even know you had gone?Good luck with your 17th year

    :) A lot of good it did me, though! Alkthough I am a complete ASS for not picking Gilbert ANYWHERE in my top 5. I deserved to get hell for the line up I posted!!!

    Actually we had a wonderful dinner with some decent coffee at a cafe afterward. Thanks!

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