Velominati Super Prestige: Giro d’Italia

Ivan Basso leads the 2006 Giro before illness forced him out of the lead.

The inaugural Velominati Super Prestige continues the with Giro d’Italia, on Saturday May 8 in Amsterdam. This will be the first Grand Tour of the series, and while we have a set of rules established for the competition, we’ll be modifying them as we go if we notice any problems with them.

Personally, I feel the Giro is the Cyclist’s Grand Tour; it’s not as main-stream or commercial as the Tour de France, but the race generally makes for a  more exciting three weeks. There is something about the topography and geography of Italy that seems to lend itself to unpredictable and aggressive racing  where several riders typically stay in contention until the final stages of the race.

With this being the first Grand Tour of the series, we’ve set up a scoring system that we think will be fair but will also help to close down the competition and afford newcomers the ability to catch up with some good picks.  Jump over to the VSP Schedule, Rules, & Results page for a full explanation of the rules and the standings, but here is the ten-second overview:

Every contestant is to choose their top five General Classification picks of the race.  The final podium of the Giro is worth 15 points to the winner, 10 points for second, 5 points for third, 3 points for fourth, and 2 point for fifth.  Given the effect crashes can have on a tour, we’ve set up some guidelines around making changes to your lineup during the race: you’re allowed to change your lineup if any rider in your pick list drops out for any reason without any penalty; rest days will allow contestants to make changes to their lineup, however those changes will come at a point penalty.  (Visit the VSP Schedule, Rules, & Results page for a complete breakdown of these points.)

Every day, the leader in the points standings will have the honor of wearing the Pink Jersey when commenting on the site; the overall winner will wear the Pink Jersey for the remainder of the season, and will also earn an “Obey the Rules” bumper sticker.  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 comment section.

Sub-competitions will be conducted while the Giro is underway for specific stages.  These stages will be chosen a few days prior to the stage being held and will be selected based on the current race conditions with the aim of choosing the most decisive and exciting stages of the race, so check back often to make sure you don’t miss out.

Good luck!

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213 Replies to “Velominati Super Prestige: Giro d’Italia”

  1. What a thoroughly classy win for Lloyd though. Right gents, my cover may be thin over the next few days. It’s been a very challenging few weeks, and to paraphrase a great man..every now and then, when your life gets complicated and the weasels start closing in, the only cure is to load up on heinous chemicals and then ride like a bastard from Sestri Levante to Riomaggiore with a belly full of Linguine alla Vongole. Arriverderci, I’m a off to Italy!

  2. Looks like me and Nibali will loose the pink jersey today…Memorable stage today, almost impossible to recognize the riders after all the mud!

  3. I agree, memorable is right. It is refreshing to see Rule #5 required to finish a stage in a Grand Tour.

    Vino was nodding his head, wiping mud out of his eyes as they entered the Bianche roads. We may have well seen this kind of riding 50 years ago!

  4. Another incredible day of racing sees Veino take the lead.

    1 Marko: 25 points
    2 Frank: 13 points
    3 Jarvis: 11 points
    4 Geof: 11 points
    5 John: 4 points
    6 Brett: 3 points
    7 Rob: 2 points
    8 Joe: 2 points
    9 Robert Marques: 2 points
    10 Nathan Edwards: 1 point

    Congratulations to Jarvis who takes the Pink Comment Badge as leader of the competition.

  5. Sounds like I missed watching one of the best stages for a very long time. Was racing (unsuccessfully) myself… must find some video and pay attention to the adherence of Rule #5

  6. Fantastic stage today, Zomegnan got this one right, not matter what whinging Aussies say.

    I like pink.

    Do Marko and Frank not count in this then?

  7. @Nathan Edwards
    Amazing. The only downside was that I felt that at 30km to go, the race should have waited for the Maglia Rosa after the crash, but that’s life, I guess. If Ullrich can wait during the final climb to Luz Ardiden, then they could have waited before the Strada. That aside, amazing Rule #5 action in at GT. Awesome.

  8. @frank. I think this waiting for people is a load of wankbag. So Nibali binned it, it was 30km from the end at the point of selection. Where do you draw the line? Start to neutralise the race for the GC leader for the last 30km?

    Didn’t see Liquigas waiting for anyone on stage 3 did we?

    Ullrich waiting because he didn’t want to be ass-fucked by Armstrong, a masonic thing.

    The should all Rule #5

  9. Armstrong at Luz Ardiden is probabaly the cause of all this “protocol” of waiting for the leader if he crashes. But that crash was different. He was taken down by external forces and so in that situation Ullrich was probably right to wait. But racing crashes like Nibali’s are just that. Get over, these PRO’s need some rules of their own including that you only wait for the leader if they are delayed by external forces (not including railway crossings).

  10. @Jarvis
    Mate, you are absolutely right. Nibali crashed going through a corner where other riders stayed upright. It was rider error, at the least in that he was too far back and at the most for crashing. In cycling, you make your own luck.

    To wait for the leader with a flat or other mishap is one thing; to wait because they can’t keep the rubber side down is another.

    By the way, when Armstrong went down, he passed too closely to the girl – also bad racing. But that’s history.

  11. Updated standings after another great day of racing.

    1 Marko: 28 points
    2 Frank: 13 points
    3 Geof: 12 points
    4 Jarvis: 11 points
    5 Robert Marques: 7 points
    6 John: 3 points
    7 Brett: 2 points
    8 Rob: 2 points
    9 Joe: 2 points
    10 Nathan Edwards: 1 point

    Today we see Geof and Jarvis swapping places, with Geof taking Maglia Rosa badge.

  12. Today we see Geof and Jarvis swapping places, with Geof taking Maglia Rosa badge.

    @frank
    I am ridiculously excited by this.

  13. @all

    No changes in the VSP after today’s Stage 9:

    1 Marko: 28 points
    2 Frank: 13 points
    3 Geof: 12 points
    4 Jarvis: 11 points
    5 Robert Marques: 7 points
    6 John: 3 points
    7 Brett: 2 points
    8 Rob: 2 points
    9 Joe: 2 points
    10 Nathan Edwards: 1 point

  14. So, now the questions becomes, do I change my linup again on the rest day? Sastre has certainly tanked out. Here’s hoping he drops out so I can change ’em up for free.

  15. Damn, I go on trail for a few days and look what happens! I got some catching up to do on race reports.

  16. @all
    No changes in the VSP after today’s Stage 10:
    1 Marko: 28 points
    2 Frank: 13 points
    3 Geof: 12 points
    4 Jarvis: 11 points
    5 Robert Marques: 7 points
    6 John: 3 points
    7 Brett: 2 points
    8 Rob: 2 points
    9 Joe: 2 points
    10 Nathan Edwards: 1 point

  17. Massive, epic ride from the boys out front. Count Drac had too much garlic in his Pasta last night, clearly. Wiggo and Sastre back in it and a week of mountains to go. Hoo-Rah!

  18. @Joe, @Marko
    Oh, after a little rest day blood work, Veino’ll be back in it, too!

    Happy to see my boy is back in the game; I was starting to think I needed to make a Rest Day Switchup.

    Too much garlic in his pasta. Joe, you kill me.

  19. I’m guessing there will be no Maglia Rosa on here for a few days now. Starting to wish I hadn’t subbed out Wiggin’s now.

    Rest day is going to be busy.

  20. @Jarvis
    Fo’sho. Every day will have a Maglia Rosa, so I’m working out what a tie-breaking scenario might be for this. I think we’re going to have to give it out based on the best placed riders on GC that are in the pics.

    Just when you start to think there has to be a new miracle drug because the lads are racing so fast, they go and shit themselves like this. This, at least, was real-life kind of racing. Amazing.

    There is coverage here in the states; but only on Universal Sports, which costs money. The fucktards at Versus only care about the Tour of Californication which is a softman race. As Brett said, “Any race the Eggtimer can win three times is not a race.” Or something to that effect, anyway.

  21. @all
    Everyone has fuck all for points, so here is the tie breaker. I went with whose picks were highest in the GC. Jarvis, Jeff, Joe, and I picked Sastre for first, who is the highest placed rider on GC (of the favorites). Of the four of us, three picked Evans for second, and only Geof picked Wiggo for third, so he keeps the jersey.

    A bit arbitrary, but the most fair way I could think of to pick a leader out of this mess, much like deciding the leader’s jersey based on summation of fractions of seconds. If someone can come up with a better way to pick a leader, I’m all for hearing it.

    And by the way, if anyone is wondering, this is why the Giro is better than the Tour. Halfway through and it’s anyone’s race.

  22. The Tour has the potential to be fantastic this year. Now how are those rain-gods fixed for Stage 3?

    @frank

    I meant is anyone paying attention to the Tour of Cali. So obviously not…

  23. No change in the leader board after today’s Stage 11. Sorry for the late update.

    1 Marko: 28 points
    2 Frank: 13 points
    3 Geof: 12 points
    4 Jarvis: 11 points
    5 Robert Marques: 7 points
    6 John: 3 points
    7 Brett: 2 points
    8 Rob: 2 points
    9 Joe: 2 points
    10 Nathan Edwards: 1 point

  24. @Nathan Edwards
    You are right, I completely copied the wrong results. We all have no points each and I’m an idiot. The tie-breaking rules that I made up have us with Geof still leading…

    Sorry about that. Good catch.

  25. @all
    I had a busy day yesterday and didn’t get to do much following of the racing; anyone figure out what happened with Cadel and the nancy fist flinging?

  26. It was so embarrassing! If this sport got any coverage it would be the lead in all the news shows for gay fighting. To be honest I saw it but just laughed and paid little attention so I can’t give details.

  27. @frank

    Looked like a couple fourth graders throwing haymakers in the cloakroom. I haven’t seen any reports other than it happened. It probably would have gotten more attention if it weren’t for Roid Landis which is actually a good thing about Roid’s attention seeking rants. Here’s the vid

  28. We’ve all seen this a million times but maybe Cuddles should get some pointers from the Badger on how to lay some bitches out.

  29. You know, as a fellow Tall Lanky Bastard, I would really love to love The Russian Rugs Salesman. But I can’t. Not that that hair cut.

  30. @frank

    Screw that man, Vladi “C’mon Feel The Noize” Karpets’ haircut makes him that much more of a badass. Just take Rule #33 and apply to his haircut.

    In fact, it’s tempting to edit this Rule as follows:

    Hair is to be carefully coifed at all times. If, for some reason, you’re rocking a mullet, make sure you can dish out plenty of hurt to metrosexual Nancyboys, or be considered a Def Lepard blasting tool on their way to a Kegger.

    But I won’t do that just yet as we’re undergoing a schismatic King James revision of The Rules.

    *disclaimer: I don’t really know what King James mean but understand it has something to do with revising the ten commandments or something and thought the analogy might work here.

  31. frank :

    @Marko
    Love the BIGRINGRIDING take on this:

    THE BADGER: TAKING PEOPLE TO THE PAIN CAVE SINCE 1977.
    THIS MAN SPENT HIS ENTIRE FUCKING CAREER IN THE BIG RING, EVEN WHEN HE WASN’T ON THE BIKE.

    I also like his take on Jens. His shit is hilarious, elegant, and hardman all at once.

    JENS. WHAT A FUCKING BIG RING LEGEND. UNSUCCESSFULLY DEFENDING HIS YELLOW AT THE 2010 PARIS-NICE. CHECK THE DRIBBLE ON HIS LEFT KNEE – HE’S BEEN GIVING IT THE BERRIES FOR HALF AN HOUR.

    PUT YOUR HEELS THROUGH IT SON.

  32. @Marko
    The problem with the Rugs Salesman is he, by and large, rides like a big fat pussie, with brief glimpses of form. Not worthy of a Rule (although I like what you’re saying). I mean, come on. Fucking Spartacus and Fucking Jens. Those are two modern legends who put people in the Hurt Locker just by showing up. Whole different ballgame, dude.

  33. @frank
    Easy there fella. While he may be no Spartacus, he’s been around for a while and has probably a better palmares than Jens when it comes to the big races.

    And I bet he’s ingested some hard Russian drugs too, none of that pussy Swiss/German shit.

    Rugs took some time back today, solo’ed across and is sitting pretty among the contenders. My top 5 is looking pretty good at the moment. But the Giro has a way of turning shit on its head every day.

  34. No change in the standings today, despite some rad racing. Basso is starting to look pretty good!

    Geof maintains the jersey, for now.

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