2012 Tour de France thread


#1

Should be a real fun tour this year despite Contador and Andy Schleck out. Team Sky is an all star team and will be fun to watch. Should be interesting between Wiggins and Evans for the title. Someone like Ryder could surprise everyone and win this one as well. He was in great form in the Giro.

Here’s my perfered coverage site. They list a bunch of streams everyday to watch on and have good pictures of each stage.

http://www.steephill.tv/tour-de-france/

First stage is on June 30th.


#2

I’m very excited for this year. Definitely think Wiggins has a good shot at it. Haven’t missed a stage in 5 years, don’t plan on it this year either :smiley:


#3

Why is Andy Schleck out?


#4

biggest question is what PED will the winner test positive for this year?


#5

Spine injury that he got when he fell during the tt in the Criterium du Dauphine.


#6

fractured pelvis sustained in a tour warm up race(criterium de blah blah something french)

LOL seriously. Or when will Evans get striped of last years title?

I always watch every stage of the tour, very excited for this year even with Andy and Contador out.
I think Wiggins has a huge shot, and interestingly enough Mark Cavendish is on his team so they could potentially score a Yellow and Green jersey. But I think with the team’s main interest being supporting Wiggins for Yellow, Cav may fall off the pace too much in the mountains and not make a time cut off like last year. Hopefully the sprinters work together in the mountains to make the cutoffs. I’m most excited for the Col Du Tourmalet stage!

Big players IMO:

Cadel Evans
Wiggins
Frank Schlek
Levi
Gilbert(overlooked)

EDIT: And of course the best part of the Tour: Phil Liggett calling it all!(this is his 40th year)


#7

Evans should have no trouble winning. He might not even need to dope to do it… Wiggins is probably his only serious challenger, as I don’t expect Hesjedal to have much left in the tank after his Giro win.


#8

I think Ryder Hesjedal will do a lot better than people think. Sure he’s gonna be exhausted from his Giro win, but he’s gonna be all jacked up on mountain dew (adrenalin) from that win.


#9

Here’s an entertaining hour long preview show that NBC sports did.
http://www.steephill.tv/players/youtube3/?title=TourdeFrance2012Preview&dashboard=tour-de-france&id=L1tb_iCFJWY&yr=2012

If anything it’s worth watching just to hear Phil Liggett’s voice


#10

if Hincape finishes this year he will hold the record as having the most tours under his belt! What an accomplishment for “Old George!”


#11

Pierre Rolland - This guy is a dark horse for top 5 and I think could be on the podium if Europcar picks him to be team leader early. Probably they will start the tour saying that they are riding for Voeckler, but hopefully they realize very early that Rolland is their best chance for a high GC finish. The route doesn’t suit him at all, but this kid is strong as hell and will be a GC threat for many years, especially when the route is more normal.

Jelle Vanendert/Jurgen Van Den Broeck - I’m not sure which of Lotto’s Belgians will emerge as their team leader. Vanendert has been riding really well for the last year, but the route suits Van Den Broeck more. Whichever proves to be stronger will place in the top 7 or so in the GC.

The green jersey - Finally we get to see Cavendish v. Sagan. Sagan has been absolutely dominant this year and I’m excited to see what he can do now that he gets to race his first Tour. Cavendish has been beaten a couple of times this year in straight up sprints, but has faced a higher level of competition and overall has also been quite dominant. Without analyzing the intermediate sprint points, my prediction is Cavendish looks better in flat stage finishes, but Sagan takes the green jersey because of his strength and ability to place high on lumpy stages. This guy will be a better version of Thor, and is a multiple world champion in the future for sure.

The ITT - Cancellara seems to be rounding into form after his collarbone break during the spring season. However, I think that his reign as TT king of the peloton is over for good. Tony Martin has reached the top and is there to stay. I am hoping that Spartacus can win one last prologue and ride the first week in yellow.

Some other miscellaneous thoughts: Nibali will ride well. Frank Schleck and Sammy Sanchez are in good shape, but the route really doesn’t suit them; they will both still be in the top 6 overall. I think Ryder will be fried, though I hope otherwise. Vandevelde might surprise if he is able to take team lead early enough. Gilbert is not going to do well overall as someone was saying above, but I think he is probably in good form and will certainly be a threat to take a stage. This route really sucks; bring back the high mountains! I think Wiggins is stronger than Cadel (stronger relative to this Tour’s route), but I think that BMC has planned a team that is more GC oriented and that it will be a factor. It should be an interesting battle between the two of them, and I hope Wiggins can win it. I think Garmin will have a disappointing Tour.

Also, Schleck v. Contador makes this years Vuelta something to really look forward to.

EDIT: My predictions -

  1. Wiggins
  2. Evans
  3. Schleck
  4. Rolland
  5. Sanchez
  6. Van Den Broeck
  7. Nibali
  8. Cobo
  9. Brajkovic
  10. Scarponi

Green Jersey - Sagan
Polka Dot Jersey - Sanchez
White Jersey - Rolland EDIT: oops, Rolland is two months too old for this. Van Garderen.


#12

I would go here for an alternative streaming site:

http://www.thefirstrow.eu/

They have esentially every sport imaginable and they are always very reliable.


#13

For someone out of the know (me), what is unusual about the route this year?


#14

Very few summit finishes and over 100k of TT. Stage 11 and 17 look like they will cause big GC splits but none of the other stages look really conducive to big climbing battles.


#15

An extra ITT’s and a relatively “easy” linneup of mountains.


#16

Are you in on the Fantasy game? Check for the thread a little further down in the PG.


#17

I joined. I got really frustrated with the website after a few minutes, so my team may not be ideal. It’s also sort of hard to say what the best strategy is. To me it seems that sprinters are the most valuable, but abandoning due to the Olympics might throw a wrench into that strategy. I think my team will do ok though, and I like the Joker part of the game.


#18

What was frunstrating? Once you go into the acount settings and set your nation/league (Dyestat), all of the athlete names are organized by team. That might have helped a bit.


#19

Prologue starts at 7AM Central time tomorrow morning. Should be a fun one. I’ve got Fabian or Wiggins for the win on this one with Sagan as a dark horse.

Evans goes out at 10:17 Central time and is the last rider out one minute afte Cancellara. Whole thing should wrap up by around 10:30.

Others to watch and their start times:
38 14:37:00 63 FARRAR Tyler GRS (North American)
78 15:17:00 102 *BOASSON HAGEN Edvald
126 16:05:00 62 DANIELSON Thomas (North American)
130 16:09:00 29 ROLLAND Pierre EUC
131 16:10:00 14 HORNER Christopher RNT (North American)
132 16:11:00 4 GILBERT Philippe
148 16:27:00 68 VANDEVELDE Christian GRS (North American)
149 16:28:00 52 BASSO Ivan LIQ
154 16:33:00 5 HINCAPIE George BMC (North American)
157 16:36:00 191 LEIPHEIMER Levi OPQ (North American)
170 16:49:00 69 ZABRISKIE David GRS (North American) (Also has good shot at winning)
171 16:50:00 57 *SAGAN Peter LIQ (Darkhorse)
172 16:51:00 47 PETACCHI Alessandro LAM
175 16:54:00 11 SCHLECK Frank RNT
176 16:55:00 9 *VAN GARDEREN Tejay BMC (North American)
178 16:57:00 204 GOSS Matthew Harley OGE
179 16:58:00 196 MARTIN Tony OPQ (Favorite)
180 16:59:00 189 VINOKOUROV Alexandre AST
183 17:02:00 151 GESINK Robert RAB
184 17:03:00 148 ROY Jérémy FDJ
185 17:04:00 131 MENCHOV Denis KAT
188 17:07:00 101 WIGGINS Bradley SKY (Favorite)
192 17:11:00 61 HESJEDAL Ryder GRS
193 17:12:00 51 NIBALI Vincenzo LIQ
194 17:13:00 41 SCARPONI Michele LAM
195 17:14:00 31 SANCHEZ Samuel EUS
196 17:15:00 21 VOECKLER Thomas EUC
197 17:16:00 12 CANCELLARA Fabian RNT (My Pick)
198 17:17:00 1 EVANS Cadel BMC


#20

SPAAAAAAAARTACUS!!

Nice ride by Tony Martin. Had it not been for his mechanical issues he probably would have gotten second.