Velominati Super Prestige: L’Eroica/Strade Bianche 2013

Eroica
This isn’t Pavé – its Gravé.

Until the 70’s it was common to race on gravel roads, but the Paving of the Planet has led to nearly every road being graced by smooth, black tarmac. As is the case with most things, once we are shown the easy path, it is difficult to return to more arduous ways. So it is with gravel roads; we take measures to avoid unpaved roads and in doing so, we eliminate some of the most rewarding experiences.

Marko has been at the leading edge of the Minnesota Gravé Scene (which has been at the leading edge of the American Gravé Scene), going so far as to build a custom carbon gravel racer called Le Graveur tuned not for CX but for fast racing on gravel roads and snow machine trails. Limited paved roads has lead race organizers to look for alternatives and the result has been several great rides cropping up in the Midwest, East Coast, and in Montana. Challenge has even developed a tire named after one of Minnesota’s most popular gravel races, the Almanzo. Its exciting stuff, and I’ve caught the bug myself; I’ll be planning several big Gravé rides this summer with the boys at Veloforma in Portland as well as some up in Northern Washington near Mazama. What could be better than riding a road bike on gravel roads in the quiet of the wilderness? Not much.

I digress; riding gravel is nothing new, and until the last 30 or so years, most races featured some manner of gravels roads, especially once races hit the mountains. The Italian race l’Eroica, is a throwback to those days, sending the riders over the glorious white gravel roads known as the Strade Bianche. It may not be pavé, but with steep climbs and long sections of gravel racing, this is one of the most unique and best races of the year. And the lack of cobblestones won’t stop me from praying for rain. On a side note, stay tuned for a Keepers Tour coming to this area in the coming years.

Enough of the chatter, lets get onto the Naming of the Picks for the 2013 L’Eroica/Strade Biache. As usual, enter your picks by 5am Pacific time on Saturday. If you can’t do Time Zone Math, just watch the countdown timer in the banner and put your picks in before it goes to zero. Points go towards the season-long Velominati Super-Prestige competition; the winner will receive a personalized shop apron. Check the start list and try to pick riders who are actually going to be there; I know that’s a stretch. Good luck.

Gratuitous Photos of @Marko’s Le Graveur

[dmalbum path=”/velominati.com/content/Photo Galleries/[email protected]/Le%20Graveur/”/]

[vsp_results id=”22350″/]

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287 Replies to “Velominati Super Prestige: L’Eroica/Strade Bianche 2013”

  1. total shot in the dark (or a shot into the luce, considering this event)….

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Cancellara
    2. mini-Phinney
    3. Tyler Farrar
    4. Peter Sagan
    5. Cadel Evans

  2. @Sauterelle

    @scaler911

    Happy 50th El Diablo!

    The Tashkent Terror’s birthday is today too, 49 years old.

    JeeeZHUS!  Throw those two in a locked room with a bag of coke and just imagine the carnage!  Two abso-foookin-lutely crazyass people right there!  Love ’em!

  3. Picks 2.0 (minor shuffle)

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Greg Van Avermaet
    2. Fabian Cancellara
    3. Peter Sagan
    4. Lars Boom
    5. Alejandro Valverde

  4. VSP PICKS:

    1. Fabian Cancellara
    2. Peter Sagan
    3. Greg Van Avermaet
    4. Alejandro Valverde
    5. Damiano Cunego

  5. Bloody hell!! Didn’t realise I was wearing the leaders jersey! What a responsibility

  6. Fuck it. I now have to make space for Sagan after yesterday’s win. Want to stick with Brutt as my wildcard though, so Faboo is out.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. van Avermaet
    2. Valverde
    3. Pavel Brutt
    4. Pozzato
    5. Peter Sagan

  7. @Bianchi Denti

    Fuck it. I now have to make space for Sagan after yesterday’s win. Want to stick with Brutt as my wildcard though, so Faboo is out.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. van Avermaet2. Valverde3. Pavel Brutt4. Pozzato5. Peter Sagan

    Wow! Bold move! I was wondering if today’s race would give him enough time to recover for Saturday and then I remembered that he is 23 years old and not 41 like me so he doesn’t need the three weeks to recover from an all out effort like I do! But throwing Cancellara out? Brassy move!

  8. @Buck Rogers

    @Bianchi Denti

    Fuck it. I now have to make space for Sagan after yesterday’s win. Want to stick with Brutt as my wildcard though, so Faboo is out.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. van Avermaet2. Valverde3. Pavel Brutt4. Pozzato5. Peter Sagan

    Wow! Bold move! I was wondering if today’s race would give him enough time to recover for Saturday and then I remembered that he is 23 years old and not 41 like me so he doesn’t need the three weeks to recover from an all out effort like I do! But throwing Cancellara out? Brassy move!

    There’s no fun in all of us picking the same 5 or 6 guys in a different order. Better to mix it up IMO. I choose an outlier/wildcard for every race, @ralph picks on nationality. I’m sure others have their systems. Het Nieuwsblad showed that favourites don’t always win or even make the podium.

    Of course, if Faboo wins, THEN I’m an idiot.

  9. Rinaldo Nocentini raced today in 64th G.P. Camaiore over 183km to result in 3rd. Peter Sagan finished 1st. These men are either ready or worn out.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Kristoff
    2. Nuyens
    3. Pozzato
    4. Flecha
    5. Cunego

  10. VSP PICKS:

    1. Kristoff
    2. Nuyens
    3. Pozzato
    4. Flecha Giannoni
    5. Cunego

  11. Eurosport are going to grace Australia with several hours of this awesome race. Names out of a hat of favourites really.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Cuddles
    2. Val Verde
    3. Cancellara
    4. Boom
    5. Sagan

  12. Anyone got a weather foecast for this one? If it rains Cuddles is a shoe in.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Cuddles
    2. Val Verde
    3. Cancellara
    4. Boom
    5. Sagan

  13. VSP PICKS:

    1. Phinney
    2. Boom
    3. Kristoff
    4. Sagan
    5. Cancellara

  14. For no apparent reason, other than the obvious

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Cancellara
    2. Evans
    3. Boom
    4. Sagan
    5. Dekker

  15. VSP PICKS:

    1. Sagan
    2. Pozatto
    3. Pellizotti
    4. Phinney
    5. Cancellara

  16. New at this – let’s give it a go…

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Fabian Cancellara
    2. Lars Boom
    3. Cadel Evans
    4. Greg Van Avermaet
    5. Peter Sagan

  17. @Pedale.Forchetta yup, spent a week in Florence a few years back on our honeymoon & did a day trip through Chianti country…really want to get back with a bike!

  18. VSP PICKS:

    1. Peter Sagan
    2. Fabian Cancellara
    3. Oscar Gatto
    4. Greg Van Avermaet
    5. Tom Slagter

  19. VSP PICKS:

    1. Peter Sagan
    2. Taylor Phinney
    3. Alejandro Valverde
    4. Cadel Evans
    5. Tyler Farrar

  20. I really enjoyed this race last year…

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Peter ‘sign my tetons’ Sagan
    2. Spartacus
    3. Van Avermaet
    4. Pozzato
    5. Dirty ‘verde

  21. Any scenario would be better than Het Volk – lamest sprint since Nana rolled town to the paper shop.s

    Slow learner Faboo tows Boom to the line…

    Cuddles to keep his I powder dry.

    VSP PICKS:

    1. Snake Boom
    2. Spartibus
    3. Gatto
    4. Moser
    5. Kreuziger

  22. @Pedale.Forchetta

    @Buck Rogers

    You don’t need to be fluent in Italian, just drop some words here and there, like:
    – Ciao amico!

    – Che gamba!

    – Hey ciuccia ruote!

    Bel Mezzo!

    – Torniamo a casa a tuono!

     

     

     

    I did a year of fellowship training in Philadelphia with a guy born and bred and who lived in Sicily (he just came to the States for his Fellowship and now lives in Milan) and he was always yelling Cazzo!  I picked it up and whenever I would say it he would say, “Oh Buck, you really shouldn’t say that, it is a very bad word!”  Cracked me up.  So I picked up three words from him:  Grazie, prego, and Cazzo!  Figured that you should carry me in most situations!

  23. VSP PICKS:

    1. Sagan
    2. Van Avermaet
    3. Cancellara
    4. Evans
    5. Vanmarcke

  24. VSP PICKS:

    1. Sagan
    2. GVA
    3. Fabian
    4. Paolini
    5. T Phinney

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