Julian Alaphilippe was never supposed to be the saviour of French stage racing. He is destined to wear Rainbow stripes, dominate the Mur, and stack up an enviable Monument record, perhaps even completing an unprecedented full set. It was last year that we realised just how good he was at riding uphill fast and outfoxing
Last Thursday, Alaphilippe was found guilty of doping after failing a test which showed traces of the drug “winning La Fleche and a Pau time trial in the same year”. He requested a b-sample, but unfortunately this showed an illegally high level of the facial hair growth aid “hanging with the big boys on the
Even the hardiest of ‘Gardenites’ will accept that Tejay van Garderen will never win a Grand Tour. In fact – in the most cynical of company – suggesting van Garderen could ride to even a stealthy top five will be met with hilarity. He cracks far too often and can’t string together enough good days.
Egan Bernal is the Tour de France favourite and – at 2/1 – he could be huge value. He’s the best pure climber at a Tour crafted for pure climbers. He’s riding for the team who has delivered six of the last seven victories and who – debuting the Ineos guise – can boast one
After Tom Dumoulin was forced out of the race – and with Simon Yates lacking a bit of everything – the 102nd Giro d’Italia was always going to hit a very different note to the one we had anticipated. Astana struggled to impose their depth of talent on the GC, crippled somewhat by the obvious
Since launching Just Pro Cycling I’ve got very good at being wrong. I dismissed Philippe Gilbert’s return to cobbles and argued that Nairo Quintana would finally conquer the Tour. This post is an apology disguised as a list. I was wrong about Mathieu van der Poel who looks to be the new superman of road
It’s unfortunate that ‘cycling’ and ‘doubting everything you see’ go together like ‘sunday club ride’ and ‘too much cake’. It’s worse when you’re faced with convicted dopers, or a team with the sketchiest reputation in the sport. When a general manager looks like he narrowly missed out on the role of a James Bond villain,
For any regular cycling fan, stage 9 of the 2016 Giro d’Italia was an introduction to Primoz Roglic. An exciting 40km time-trial in Chianti was rain soaked and the conditions heavily favoured the early starters. Roglic, who had started in the opening hour, held top spot for much of the afternoon and took the win.