This is the real Ronde

Velominati Super Prestige: Ronde van Vlaanderen 2013

Velominati Super Prestige: Ronde van Vlaanderen 2013

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Imagine a world without the little things we take for granted; a house without a roof, a pub with no beer, a Keepers Tour without any clothes. The last one is a reality for me at the moment, five days in and still no trace of where the hell between Wellington and Paris my bag (filled with V-Kit, shoes, helmet, everything) is. The other thing that has me perturbed again this trip is that there is no Muur de Grammont/Kapelmuur in the Ronde. To me, the race feels naked without it.

That won’t stop us from riding it next weekend though, and although there will be no crowds, no pros, there will still be the magical spirit of the great battles past on these hallowed stones. We’ll try and emulate The Lion and climb it in the big ring (or the 50t) while the man himself watches on, probably laughing inside, or indeed outwardly, as we succumb to the gradient and stab frantically at the left-hand shifter. Then we’ll realise just how ordinary we are and how special this hill is.

Even though the Muur is absent again this year, the 2013 Ronde is shaping up as one of the best in recent history. The battle between Faboo and Sags is well touted, but will they mark each other out of it and let an opportunist take their chance? My money’s on that scenario playing out, but if you have any sense you’ll see my VSP scores reflect a total lack of tipping nous so far this season and reject anything I predict as hogwash.

Check out the start list, grab a cold Malteni or other fine Belgian ale, slather your frites in mayo and keep your eye out for the V-Flag on the Oude Kwaremont this Sunday. Goed geluk!

Final Race Results
1. CANCELLARA Fabian
2. SAGAN Peter
3. ROELANDTS Jurgen
4. KRISTOFF Alexander
5. LADAGNOUS Matthieu
Final VSP Results
1. Islandbike (15 points)
2. Duende (13 points)
3. torrefie (12 points)
4. sthilzy (12 points)
5. Jhortua (12 points)
6. El Segundo (12 points)
7. Buck Rogers (12 points)
8. Alex (12 points)
9. Steampunk (12 points)
10. Roberto Marques (12 points)
11. V-olcano (12 points)
12. sgraha (12 points)
13. Lukas (12 points)
14. m_demartino (12 points)
15. Simon (12 points)
16. imakecircles (12 points)
17. el gato (12 points)
18. Adrian (12 points)
19. seemunkee (12 points)
20. LA Dave (12 points)
21. VeloVita (12 points)
22. Heihachi (12 points)
23. simonsaunders (12 points)
24. NoTubes (12 points)
25. EricW (12 points)
26. Noel (12 points)
27. leadout (12 points)
28. pakrat (12 points)
29. tony macaroni (9 points)
30. strathlubnaig (9 points)
31. mbarston (8 points)
32. San Tonio (8 points)
33. Two Ball Billy (8 points)
34. wiscot (8 points)
35. scaler911 (8 points)
36. VirenqueForever (8 points)
37. The Oracle (8 points)
38. Nate (8 points)
39. RedRanger (8 points)
40. JohnnyP (8 points)
41. Jay (8 points)
42. anotherdownunder (8 points)
43. Harminator (8 points)
44. Dan_R (8 points)
45. Gino (8 points)
46. Gianni (8 points)
47. Smithers (8 points)
48. sprider (7 points)
49. Souleur (7 points)
50. roger (7 points)
51. quanyeomans (7 points)
52. taon24 (6 points)
53. xyxax (6 points)
54. DerHoggz (6 points)
55. brian (6 points)
56. Facetious_Jesus (6 points)
57. Smith (5 points)
58. unversio (5 points)
59. Dinan (5 points)
60. Gervais (3 points)
61. Bianchi Denti (3 points)
62. Jarvis (3 points)
63. bugleboy21 (3 points)
64. R00tdown (2 points)
65. Mirko (2 points)
66. DaRCrider (2 points)
67. HeinrichHauslersHairstyle (2 points)
68. The Grande Fondue (2 points)
69. mouse (2 points)
70. Blah (2 points)
71. Mikael Liddy (2 points)
72. stickyjumper (2 points)
73. TOM.NELS2120 (2 points)
74. napolinige (2 points)
75. Al__S (2 points)
76. eightzero (2 points)
77. Sauterelle (2 points)
78. Tobin (2 points)
79. skagitteam (2 points)
80. CanuckChuck (2 points)
81. Bat Chainpuller (2 points)
82. Dr C (2 points)
83. Don Amedo (2 points)
84. ramenvelo (2 points)
85. freddy (2 points)
86. la plaque (2 points)
87. Anais Ninja (2 points)
88. JohnB (2 points)
89. Skinnyphat (2 points)
90. motor city (2 points)
91. oneninefiveninesix (2 points)
92. moondance (2 points)
93. Asyax (2 points)
94. Asyax (2 points)
95. Vernwitha_V (2 points)
96. piwakawaka (2 points)
97. Russ (2 points)
98. chrismurphy92 (2 points)
99. eenies (2 points)
100. Skip (2 points)
101. Deakus (2 points)
102. Fausto (2 points)
103. Smithers (2 points)
104. Chica (2 points)
105. MJ Moquin (2 points)
106. BelgianBoysClub (2 points)
107. Mark Pozzi (2 points)
108. snoov (2 points)
109. dancollins (2 points)
110. razmaspaz (2 points)
111. jeyrod (2 points)
112. Ron (2 points)
113. Wingnut (2 points)
114. ChrisO (2 points)
115. starclimber (2 points)
116. the Engine (1 points)
117. Oldschooly (1 points)
118. Franklin (1 points)
119. erik (1 points)
120. Benny (1 points)
121. Chris (1 points)
122. frank (1 points)
123. ped (1 points)
124. brett (0 points)
125. Cyclops (0 points)
126. pink (0 points)
127. Whalen (0 points)

 

 

// Velominati Super Prestige

  1. @Marko  – love the look on the brunette’s face in that shot/ shop as well

  2. @Steampunk I guess this just goes to show you that every time someone stuck to cancellara until the finish and beat him at the sprint like in last year’s MSR they pretty much earned it. Finishing second next to the man seems to be as hard as actually winning some races.

    I would still like to see his powermeter stats for that one, just for the awe factor. (OVER 9000!!!!!!)

  3. Tommeke vraagt, “Peterke, Peterke, Peterke, wat doe je nu???”

  4. Oh my gosh! These photoshop “grabs” are going to ruin all the credibility we’ve built up!

    Anyone see what gearing Cancellara was riding? And Sagan? I don’t think I saw Cancellara stand up, an amazing display on such steep climbs.

    Islandbike – 28 pieces of kit. Ha! I’ve ridden through winter before & maybe worse than actually riding in that weather is getting dressed. It takes so damn long and trying to pull on shoe covers with a jacket & base layer makes me feel like I can’t reach my feet. I don’t miss that.

  5. @Ron

    Oh my gosh! These photoshop “grabs” are going to ruin all the credibility we’ve built up!

    We have credibility???

  6. @Ron 38 small ring, 11-28 cassette.

    @Steampunk Yeah, I’m sure I wasn’t the only one bemoaning Sagan’s willingness to pull when he was clearly gassed. Ego, and not too bright. Bad result for my VSP, but much happier that Spartacus won. His team of rouleurs didn’t look weak to me, and I can’t see him missing the top step in Roubaix, barring a crash.

  7. @Buck Rogers

    @ChrisO

    Oh dear, Sagan is in trouble now…

    https://twitter.com/adamtranter/status/318388916472393729/photo/1

    Wheelies are one thing, but that’s going to take a bit more explaining.

    That’s incredible. Dude needs to hire a PR man quick!!! Must admire his “cheek”, though, eh?

    Guess he got his PR man. Statement just put out by Sagan: “I don’t know why I did what I did. It just happened. Yes I was selfish and silly. No I don’t know how to live with guilt now and still I wish it had never happened. I could blame this on someone I know but it all my fault in the end so I take all responsibility.. I am so sorry for what happened yesterday. Cannot stop think about it. Biggest mistake in whole 23 years of life.”

  8. @Buck Rogers April fools?

  9. @biggles

    @Buck Rogers April fools?

    I thought of that but I do not think so (but seriously, what do I know). This episode is hitting the proverbial fan. Cyclingnews just posted an editorial about it and I am sure that Cannondale has been on the phone with him as well. His facebook page just had a rambling post in Slovak from him about the “mistake” and how he has hurt someone so close to him, etc. Sounds like his steady girlfriend wasn’t too impressed, either. Oh to be young, incredibly talented, incredibly rich, maybe a bit naive and to make a real mistake on a huge stage. Fame is cruel, eh?

  10. @Buck Rogers Sounds like it couldn’t have been much worst had he actually fiddled with Faboo’s junk.

    And this is basically just adding insult to injury after he got dropped so bad.

    Unrelated: Here’s a picture of his pained face as he is looking at Motorcus riding away:

  11. Not sure what Sagan could have done differently in the race; on reflection he might have been better off just waiting for a bunch sprint, but that’s not his style – and Spartacus was always going to do what he did anyway. I like the way Sagan works in a breakaway, and berates those around him who don’t – but they all know that taking him to the line gives them little chance of success. A stong work ethic, even if tactically misguided, will win him some fans.

    The podium incident was a bit unfortunate, and a sobering reminder of the immediacy of the web these days. I hope he reflects and learns from it, without censure from anyone in authority.

  12. @Buck Rogers At least he grabbed ass and not dope!!

  13. @LA Dave

    I think Young Peters youthful exuberance might be starting to overshadow his talents just slightly. True, he did win his first semi classic this year but to this point in the biggest races, he has mostly come up with a handful of second or below finishes – some of them arguably due to poor decisions on his part.

    My worthless opinion is it may be best for him to rein things in a bit and get just a little more focused on the only thing that matters in his career… winning. I can’t help but think that as he heads into the last few K of a big race, one of the things on his mind is which superhero he’s going to impersonate when he wins. Not saying he should change who he is, I love the joy and passion he shows when he competes… just dial the overtly self-promoting acts back a little.

    As he will most likely see this week, they can lead to distractions of epic proportions. The last thing he needs heading in to Paris-Roubaix is a weeks worth of grilling from the press/social media and the stress and anxiety that can go with it.

    Oh… and an extremely pissed off Spartacus, motivated by being upstaged even in victory by the kid, can’t help his chances either.

    Well said, Dave. Couldn’t agree more. I don’t think behavior like this helps Sagan, his team or the sport of cycling.

    -Dinan

  14. It’s crazy how small the bikes look these days

  15. @ChrisO

    @LA Dave Sort of agree, but don’t forget that 23 is very young to be winning these sorts of races. He’s doing pretty well to be getting the sort of results he has been.

    Merckx wins Milan San Remo at the age of 20.  No historical account of ass grabbing.  It seems by the measure of the Prophet, Sagan is a late bloomer and acting the fool.

  16. Sagan is a saint compared to some of the idols worshiped around here.

  17. @itburns I think measuring anybody by Mercks’ standard is an unprophetable exercise.

    But LA Dave’s comment was, as I read it, more about his general self promotion – the wheelies, the celebrations etc – as an impediment or distraction to his getting victories. I was merely making the point that antics or not, 23 is a young age to be winning such races.

    It wasn’t in reference to his ass grabbing, which was beyond foolish would be inexcusable in a 16 year old. I’m pleased to see he has made a full and apparently sincere apology. If the girl in question is happy to let it rest then I think that should be the end of it.

  18. @ChrisO

    @itburns I think measuring anybody by Mercks’ standard is an unprophetable exercise.

    I thought that was our charter.

  19. @biggles

    @Buck Rogers Sounds like it couldn’t have been much worst had he actually fiddled with Faboo’s junk.

    And this is basically just adding insult to injury after he got dropped so bad.

    Unrelated: Here’s a picture of his pained face as he is looking at Motorcus riding away:

    Very nice  shot of him  deep in the pain cave and the look on his face tells it all. He knows the train has left the station and he’s not on it. I want to say that is what the guy in the yellow is saying to him also.

  20. @itburns I thought so too.

  21. @Russ

    @biggles

    @Buck Rogers Sounds like it couldn’t have been much worst had he actually fiddled with Faboo’s junk.

    And this is basically just adding insult to injury after he got dropped so bad.

    Unrelated: Here’s a picture of his pained face as he is looking at Motorcus riding away:

    Very nice shot of him deep in the pain cave and the look on his face tells it all. He knows the train has left the station and he’s not on it. I want to say that is what the guy in the yellow is saying to him also.

    Looks like Boonen in the right hand corner.

  22. @Chris

    @Russ

    @biggles

    @Buck Rogers Sounds like it couldn’t have been much worst had he actually fiddled with Faboo’s junk.

    And this is basically just adding insult to injury after he got dropped so bad.

    Unrelated: Here’s a picture of his pained face as he is looking at Motorcus riding away:

    Very nice shot of him deep in the pain cave and the look on his face tells it all. He knows the train has left the station and he’s not on it. I want to say that is what the guy in the yellow is saying to him also.

    Looks like Boonen in the right hand corner.

    If it is him he is thinking to him self , don’t feel bad kid he got me back in 2010 at nearly the same spot.

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5i8DSbgsqC8&feature=related 

  23. @Russ

    @Chris

    @Russ

    @biggles

    @Buck Rogers Sounds like it couldn’t have been much worst had he actually fiddled with Faboo’s junk.

    And this is basically just adding insult to injury after he got dropped so bad.

    Unrelated: Here’s a picture of his pained face as he is looking at Motorcus riding away:

    Very nice shot of him deep in the pain cave and the look on his face tells it all. He knows the train has left the station and he’s not on it. I want to say that is what the guy in the yellow is saying to him also.

    Looks like Boonen in the right hand corner.

    If it is him he is thinking to him self , don’t feel bad kid he got me back in 2010 at nearly the same spot.

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5i8DSbgsqC8&feature=related

    That’s the Koppenberg, whereas Sagan was dropped on the Paterberg. Great video, though.

  24. @Mirko Well, I was guessing the context. Thow art wise and observant.

  25. @Islandbike

    Dr C, I will try to do it justice. I have already learned that I score a lot more points when I get my picks in on time! (MSR, Ghent, etc…) The Lion looks great and I’m happy to have it, just wish I hadn’t dug myself such a whole in the overall.

    In other things related to Flanders, it is 30 degrees w/25 mph winds here and I am putting on 28 pieces of kit and hitting the crappiest roads I can find this morning.

    Actually, mine was the KT one – yours required you to display some nous – fair play to you

    @Steampunk

    @Dr C

    I don’t know about this anymore. I think the lesson from yesterday is that if you work with Cancellara, he’s going to bury you. Spartacus basically shamed Sagan into taking turns pulling before the race, and you could tell that the pace was too high for the youngster. He was gassed before the Paterberg, so Cancellara just rode away (a very impressive show of power). Who’s going to help him next Sunday? Of course, without the main strongmen contenders present, will it even matter? But I can see a host of riders just sitting on his wheel, and we’ll get Cancellara sitting up regularly out of frustration.

    I guess one benefit of having ridden those god awful pave last year was knowling that if someone has power to burn, no amount of drafting will help you hold the wheel – they are like riding on very sore velcro

    1. Faboo

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