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Velominati Super Prestige: Il Lombardia 2013

Velominati Super Prestige: Il Lombardia 2013

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Il Lombardia, this is the race of the fallen leaves. This fall classic is a beautiful race in a beautiful region of Italy. The arduous route may change year to year but what does not change is the Italian need to win this thing. There is some national pride at stake here after the Italian men finished off the podium in Firenze. Bergamo to Lecco, 242 km, with five equally spaced climbs between the two. This is the final Monument of the 2013 season, directly on the heels of the World Championships. Purito won the 2012 edition of Il Lombardia and will be energized to win again after his crushing loss in the Worlds. Paulo Bettini won the race in his rainbow jersey, Rui Costa can’t be counted out not to do the same.

Many racers have already shut it down for the season. Finding great form in October is not for everyone. Yet peaking for the World Championships and Il Lombardia has been on the calendar for many of the puncheurs and strong climbers. And many others will be climbing off at the first feed zone, pulling into the Milano Malpensa airport before the race is over.

Yes this is a brutal race often won by a lone rider. Climbing, descending, good bike handling a must when the forecast calls for possible rain (yes it does again this year).

The toughest climb is in the middle of the day.

A few hundred meters after crossing Maglio the race turns to the left into the Muro di Sormano (Sormano Wall) (2 km at 15%) on a narrow and very steep (recently repaired) road, partly running through a grove, featuring steep u-bends and gradients at time exceeding 25% and even coming close to 30% around meter 1.000 of the route.

That should separate the contenders from those dismounting at the second feed zone on the course. The climbs of  Madonna del Ghisallo and Villa Vergano are waiting then a final 3 km flat run into Lecco ends it. A proper start list is not yet available as the director sportifs are still calling in the unwilling domestiques  to fill out their rosters but for now this will have to do. Good luck and good picking.

Here is a possible video link.

 

 

// Velominati Super Prestige

  1. Cuz anything can happen in a bike race. Assuming these characters are all actually starting, that is.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Simon Clarke
    2. Roche
    3. J-Rod
    4. Kadri
    5. Voeckler

  2. VSP PICKS:

    1. scarponi
    2. nibali
    3. moreno
    4. rodriguez
    5. valverde

  3. Sagan abandons.

  4. From the cyclingnews ticker…

    Zabriskie:

    “It’s been an interesting 13 years. But there’s a time for everybody, nothing lasts for ever, even cold November rain….”

  5. @xyxax

    Sagan abandons.

    Andy’s gone as well.

  6. Good thing is it’s a long weekend here in South Australia, bad thing is I still have to work tomorrow…could hurt.

  7. @Mikael Liddy

    It’s not like I don’t feel for Abandy, but it’s just so embarrassing.

    Drink up!

  8. @xyxax

    @Mikael Liddy

    It’s not like I don’t feel for Abandy, but it’s just so embarrassing.

    Drink up!

    I don’t get how you can make a living as a professional bike racer when you don’t race?

  9. Nibbles down & looks to be out.

  10. @Mikael Liddy

    Scarponi too.  Andy NF is such a trend-setter.

  11. Looks like the Italian weather curse is striking the peleton again, crashes aplenty on the descent after the Surmano.

  12. Tommy V giving it the berries! Reckon 60k might be ambitious for a solo break though.

  13. @Mikael Liddy

    Nibbles down & looks to be out.

    Fuck!  Sagan bails and Nibbles down.  2 out of 5 gone!  Come on J Rod!!!

  14. I often disparage Tommy V because of his camera-face making but that Dude has BALLZ!  I cannot see him making it but damn, I am cherring for him.  Cheeky little Fuck!

  15. Anyone know where I can watch this in Britain? Eurosport seems to be preoccupied with cars and motorbikes at the moment.

  16. Betancur down!

  17. @V-inden

    In the US, I am getting it via the RTBF feed from steephill

  18. Hope that Tommy V has something in the tank!  Cannot see him doing it but I imagine that we’ll be treated to some wonderfully facial expressions over the next ten Km’s.

  19. No love lost between Spanish riders right now, eh?

  20. @Buck Rogers

    He’s been quiet this year: nice to see him animating the final race of the season.

  21. @Steampunk

    @Buck Rogers

    He’s been quiet this year: nice to see him animating the final race of the season.

    Great ride by him.  Pure respect.  Also great attack and ride by J Rod.  Good day and great race overall.

  22. @Buck Rogers

    @Mikael Liddy

    Nibbles down & looks to be out.

    Fuck! Sagan bails and Nibbles down. 2 out of 5 gone! Come on J Rod!!!

    there you go.

  23. Purito, Dirty, Majka, Martin…looked like Gasparotto who almost pipped Martin at the line? Martin seemed to have a mechanical or crash coming into the finishing straight?

    Congrats to JRod…this has to take much of the sting of last week away. For Valverde though…another middle stepper can’t feel that great.

  24. @Mikael Liddy

    @Buck Rogers

    @Mikael Liddy

    Nibbles down & looks to be out.

    Fuck! Sagan bails and Nibbles down. 2 out of 5 gone! Come on J Rod!!!

    there you go.

    Two out of the five with one in the correct place.  Could be worse.

  25. All right Adrian!  Congratulations to you and Sir J Rod. For those lucky enough to actually watch the race it sounded like a good ‘un. It was Dave Z’s last race, I hope he finished it.

    Paris-Tours up next, the last gasp.

    Final Race Results
    1. RODRIGUEZ OLIVER Joaquin
    2. VALVERDE Alejandro
    3. MAJKA Rafal
    4. MARTIN Daniel
    5. GASPAROTTO Enrico

    Final VSP Results
    1. Adrian (13 points)
    2. unversio (12 points)
    3. Fausto (11 points)
    4. dancollins (11 points)
    5. the Engine (10 points)
    6. imakecircles (10 points)
    7. Bat Chainpuller (9 points)
    8. xyxax (9 points)
    9. Nate (9 points)
    10. Buck Rogers (8 points)

  26. @mobygrape

    my guesses. need to register for this here, sometime

    VSP PICKS:

    1. gilbert
    2. rodriguez
    3. sagan
    4. quintana
    5. valvedre

    Just saw your name.  Are you a Cannon Cliffs climber per chance???

  27. @xyxax

    @V-inden

    In the US, I am getting it via the RTBF feed from steephill

    Thanks for that! In the end I cut my losses and went for a ride and left my frustration out on the road.

  28. @V-inden

    @xyxax

    @V-inden

    In the US, I am getting it via the RTBF feed from steephill

    Thanks for that! In the end I cut my losses and went for a ride and left my frustration out on the road.

    The finish of the race froze for me, but I was confident by that point it was going to Rodriguez. It was a perfect time to suit up and hit some hills. At least one thing went my way today.

  29. A bit like my race season, the VSP comes good at the end. Today netted me a 3rd in the VSP and a win in our club hill climb; quite happy with that considering 2 years ago if have called myself a downhiller.

  30. Okay, last punt at a decal….

    1. JRod

    2. Dirty VV

    3. Meet my Majka

    4. Oh Danny Boy

    5. Henry Gasparotto

    Should be a tight race, weather forecast looks awful, Sky won’t even start – that’s my prediction, but what do I know

  31. @Gianni

    All right Adrian! Congratulations to you and Sir J Rod. For those lucky enough to actually watch the race it sounded like a good ‘un. It was Dave Z’s last race, I hope he finished it.

    Paris-Tours up next, the last gasp.

    Final Race Results
    1. RODRIGUEZ OLIVER Joaquin
    2. VALVERDE Alejandro
    3. MAJKA Rafal
    4. MARTIN Daniel
    5. GASPAROTTO Enrico

    Final VSP Results
    1. Adrian (13 points)
    2. unversio (12 points)
    3. Fausto (11 points)
    4. dancollins (11 points)
    5. the Engine (10 points)
    6. imakecircles (10 points)
    7. Bat Chainpuller (9 points)
    8. xyxax (9 points)
    9. Nate (9 points)
    10. Buck Rogers (8 points)

    My best this year I think – still visible in the background of Adrian’s victory celebration slo-mo replay pounding my handlebars after being boxed in on that final corner.

  32. Two wins this season after coming nowhere in last years VSP. Suprised the doping controle is not knocking on the door…….Better hide the syringes at the back of the fridge!

  33. @the Engine

    Don’t normally post pictures of myself but your post reminded me of this picture from a race two wweks back. The guy two bikes back: thats the face of someone who has just been outsprinted by a fatboy!

  34. @Adrian

    Two wins this season after coming nowhere in last years VSP. Suprised the doping controle is not knocking on the door…….Better hide the syringes at the back of the fridge!

    Fuck me!  We’ll have to rename you Tommeke or Sparticus. Two Classics in one year!  Chapeau!

  35. The Classic of the Falling Leaves is always charged with emotions, either because it’s the last race of the season or because the atmosphere indicates the end of the Summer.
    This year there was one more reason for a professional cyclist, it was the last time he rode this Classic. Dirk Bellemakers will retire at the end of this year. 
    The race was finished, he arrived penultimate, more than 20 minutes after Joaquim Rodriguez. 
    I saw Bellemakers coming from the bottom of the finish straight when almost every photographer were gone. It was late and it was raining.
    As an amateur I was still there. I never get tired to see the riders, even the last one.
    I started taking some photos of him when he asked me to send them to him as a memory of his days as a pro rider.
    At that moment I felt a sense of inadequacy: in a moment so important/intense for him a pro photographer would be better, I thought. But then I also thought that only an amateur would wait till the arriving of the last rider, only an amateur could take those pictures.
    Of course I’ll send them to him, ciao Dirk.
  36. @Pedale.Forchetta

    The Classic of the Falling Leaves is always charged with emotions, either because it’s the last race of the season or because the atmosphere indicates the end of the Summer.
    This year there was one more reason for a professional cyclist, it was the last time he rode this Classic. Dirk Bellemakers will retire at the end of this year.
    The race was finished, he arrived penultimate, more than 20 minutes after Joaquim Rodriguez.
    I saw Bellemakers coming from the bottom of the finish straight when almost every photographer were gone. It was late and it was raining.
    As an amateur I was still there. I never get tired to see the riders, even the last one.
    I started taking some photos of him when he asked me to send them to him as a memory of his days as a pro rider.
    At that moment I felt a sense of inadequacy: in a moment so important/intense for him a pro photographer would be better, I thought. But then I also thought that only an amateur would wait till the arriving of the last rider, only an amateur could take those pictures.
    Of course I’ll send them to him, ciao Dirk.

    Chapeau sir! What a class act you are. Did you know it was Dirk’s last race? I’m sure he was deeply appreciative that there was someone at the end who cared enough to wait for the last finishers. Imagine finishing your last race as a humble pro and there being no-one there (other that team support) who seemed to care? Chapeau too to Dirk for finishing. Many others dropped out but Dirk rode on even though he was 20 minutes down. That’s professionalism in my book. For most riders it would not be a high, but Dirk obviously wanted to finish his last race with some pride and dignity (and not DNF) and you helped him do that.

    Any more pics to share?

  37. @Adrian

    @the Engine

    Don’t normally post pictures of myself but your post reminded me of this picture from a race two wweks back. The guy two bikes back: thats the face of someone who has just been outsprinted by a fatboy!

    Looks like the guy behind you has also given up in the face of your overwhelming strength! The crowd are also digging your application of the V.

  38. @Pedale.Forchetta

    Well, then it’s a good thing you are an amateur photographer because, as you said, these are the important photos to take. I bet no one got a photo of DZ as he got off his bike somewhere before the finish. Don’t you want to finish your last race?

    This from Juan Antonio Flecha, I look forward to seeing him out on the water.

    “I say goodbye to cycling forever at the Tour of Beijing,” he continued. “I cannot wait to finish that race in mid-October and go to Maui, Hawaii, with an open date on the return ticket.

    “I’ll swap the asphalt for the foam of the waves, the bike for the surfboard, and walk barefoot all day, and be free.”

  39. @Pedale.Forchetta nothing amateur about that photo.

  40. Muro di Sormano, Rui Costa.

  41. Il Lombardia

  42. Quintana

  43. @Pedale.Forchetta I don’t know what your day job is but I’d be seriously considering a career change based on these.

  44. @Pedale.Forchetta

    The Classic of the Falling Leaves is always charged with emotions, either because it’s the last race of the season or because the atmosphere indicates the end of the Summer.
    This year there was one more reason for a professional cyclist, it was the last time he rode this Classic. Dirk Bellemakers will retire at the end of this year.
    The race was finished, he arrived penultimate, more than 20 minutes after Joaquim Rodriguez.
    I saw Bellemakers coming from the bottom of the finish straight when almost every photographer were gone. It was late and it was raining.
    As an amateur I was still there. I never get tired to see the riders, even the last one.
    I started taking some photos of him when he asked me to send them to him as a memory of his days as a pro rider.
    At that moment I felt a sense of inadequacy: in a moment so important/intense for him a pro photographer would be better, I thought. But then I also thought that only an amateur would wait till the arriving of the last rider, only an amateur could take those pictures.
    Of course I’ll send them to him, ciao Dirk.

    Perfetto.  This is the most perfect post I have ever read on this site.  Thank you for that.

  45. Inner Ring brilliantly sums up the start of Lombardia.

    “The race got off to a traditional start with a new world champion in white, an early breakaway and Andy Schleck abandoning.”

  46. @Daccordi Rider yes that’s right but if you scratch a bit the surface a bunch of nice stories will pop up. 3 riders like Pinotti, Zabriskie and Bellemakers annouced their retirement, for example…

  47. @Gianni

    @Pedale.Forchetta

    Well, then it’s a good thing you are an amateur photographer because, as you said, these are the important photos to take. I bet no one got a photo of DZ as he got off his bike somewhere before the finish. Don’t you want to finish your last race?

    This from Juan Antonio Flecha, I look forward to seeing him out on the water.

    “I say goodbye to cycling forever at the Tour of Beijing,” he continued. “I cannot wait to finish that race in mid-October and go to Maui, Hawaii, with an open date on the return ticket.

    “I’ll swap the asphalt for the foam of the waves, the bike for the surfboard, and walk barefoot all day, and be free.”

    I don’t know why DZ climbed of, but I agree, don’t you think you’d want to finish your last ride on the bike and not in the team car? Ok, I’m not a professional and I’m well aware what a business the sport can be, but for my own peace of mind, I think I’d do a Dirk – finish the race no matter how far down I was.

    I’m putting in an early nomination for Dirk to get ride of the year – a journeyman pro who tried to the end. Could have jacked it in, but applied Rule #5 and finished. An example to us all..

  48. @wiscot well said.

  49. Make it fun and light hearted not an attempt to smoke your partner in the had hit a snowball.
    You could search Gooogle for free online lessons or even go too You – Tube to watch a ffew how-to videos.

    Evven if it is not your anniversary or there is nothing to
    celebrate, women always love their partners to be a little romantic.

  50. @Roosevelt Wrong number — don’t call again.

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