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Not Near Miss of the Day: How to safely overtake cyclists... while driving a tank; "It was about protecting Sepp": End of Jumbo-Visma civil war as Vingegaard and Roglič work for Kuss (+ Remco wins); Huge sinkhole swallows bike lane + more on the live blog

Another day, another Vuelta mountain stage... join Dan Alexander on the Thursday live blog for all of that, plus everything else that's going on in the cycling world today...

SUMMARY

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14 September 2023, 10:12
Not Near Miss of the Day: How to safely overtake cyclists... while driving a tank

 Bikery told us this happened near the the Royal Armoured Corp Bovington Tank Range in Dorset... and it's not the first time...

Given their proximity to the range, "We've been passed by them a few times while riding in the area over the years. It's always a laugh!"

"The instructors seem to love it as it puts the trainee drivers under pressure, they always give you a smile and a wave or thumbs up. I can imagine seeing dozens of them coming towards you is pretty scary unless you have an anti-tank weapon!"

Tanks on the road also produces some "interesting driver psychology", Bikery told us, as they've seen "several drivers wait at give ways for the tanks to pass when there was time to pull out leading to them being stuck behind the tank doing 30mph in a 60 limit".

'What's the largest military vehicle you've safely been overtaken by?'

14 September 2023, 16:28
Giant launches "lighter, smoother and more efficient" Defy endurance road bike: first ride

I can't keep up (and I've already used the 'not another one' GIF)... yet another new release. The poor tech team are going to need to lie down in a dark room this weekend.

2024 Giant Defy Advanced SL 0 - riding 6.jpg

> Giant launches "lighter, smoother and more efficient" Defy endurance road bike: first ride

14 September 2023, 16:21
Sepp Kuss: "It's getting closer"

"The guys did a really great job, pulling the whole day, on the last two laps of this finishing climb Jan [Tratnik] was riding super for us and then Jonas did a really good pace from the bottom. I was a bit scared because he's so strong... his pace isn't always the easiest, he rode super for me and we rode a more defensive tactic. We all agreed as a team and us three before the Angliru stage and then there was what strategy we wanted to follow after that stage. It's always changing and there are always mistakes here and there but that's human nature.

"It's getting closer [Vuelta victory], tomorrow is easier but you have to stay focused and stage 20 will be really long and hard. We're out of the big mountains but there are always tough ones."

14 September 2023, 16:14
Jonas Vingegaard: "It was about protecting Sepp"
2023 Jumbo-Visma La Vuelta (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO)

[Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023]

"Everyone could see it was about protecting Sepp [...] there's a really hard stage Saturday so we have to be careful, we have to keep fighting until Madrid. It's nice to be able to pay him back, to do something for Sepp that he's done for me and Primož. Obviously I wanted to pay him back today and on Saturday, it's a very tough, very long stage so we have to be careful."

14 September 2023, 15:55
End of Jumbo-Visma civil war as Jonas Vingegaard and Primož Roglič work for Sepp Kuss — Remco Evenpoel wins stage from the break

Well, well, well, it appears someone at Jumbo-Visma has pulled rank and got everyone working towards one goal — namely, current red jersey and mountain domestique extraordinaire Sepp Kuss holding the jersey until Madrid. Incredible to see the power of a road.cc live blog poll...

Sepp Kuss Roglic (GCN)

The scenes on today's final climb were what many had hoped to see yesterday: two-time Tour de France winner Jonas Vingegaard and quadruple Grand Tour victor Primož Roglič, all of their six Grand Tours supported by Kuss' assistance, doing the work to support their American teammate have his own day in the Spanish sun.

It would be a stretch to say the mood at the finish was celebratory, Kuss thanking his new super domestiques before wheeling off for the podium ceremony, however the discipline on the climb was perfect — Vingegaard pacing, Roglič sitting in and refusing to attack.

Up the road, Remco Evenpoel took his third stage win of the race, breakaway companion Damiano Caruso saying it was "like following a scooter". By the finish the Belgian's winning majority was 4:44, surely the largest Grand Tour stage-winning margain we've seen in a considerable length of time.

14 September 2023, 15:41
Wilier introduces cheaper versions of Filante aero road bike
14 September 2023, 15:26
Why don't cyclists use cycle lanes? Massive sinkhole swallows London bike route

Top marks to whoever wrote '(gone)' on that 'road closed' sign. Slightly surprised we didn't get a 'cyclists dismount' sign too. Oh well...

 This is Eltham in south east London where a sinkhole the size of a car has appeared, taking a cycle lane with it. It emerged on Monday morning on Dunvegan Road, leaving the council to investigate its cause.

"We were notified of a sinkhole in Dunvegan Road by the London fire brigade on Monday, September 11. Our investigations are ongoing to determine the cause and develop next steps," a spokesperson said.

"Until then, the area will remain closed off and reassurance visits will be taking place with neighbouring businesses. The road is expected to be closed for at least a few weeks and diversions will be in place."

14 September 2023, 15:16
Tour of Britain organiser Mick Bennett confirms intention to see Women's Tour return in 2024
Women's Tour Oxford (Zac Williams/SWpix.com)

[Zac Williams/SWpix.com]

Poor Mick Bennett finally getting some good news to talk about. After a week of responding to critics of his Tour of Britain route and explaining the pretty grim picture of putting a bike race on in Britain at the minute, he's got something more positive...

Speaking to the Radio Cycling podcast, he confirmed "we have applied for those dates" in relation to both the Tour of Britain and Women's Tour in 2024. "We've already got a number of venues that are signed up for it," he added. 

Fingers crossed.

14 September 2023, 15:10
Birmingham safer roads protests are going national

Quick shout-out for this...

Full details at Safer Streets Now... 

14 September 2023, 14:00
The Campag Kid on building retro masterpieces, trickle-down tech, and getting hit by a car you helped design on the road.cc Podcast
14 September 2023, 12:59
Geraint Thomas says he thinks Sepp Kuss "deserves a bit more respect"
2023 Vuelta Geraint Thomas (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO)

[Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO]

Geraint Thomas has spoken about the Sepp Kuss, Jumbo-Visma situation at the Vuelta. Here's what he told the TV cameras at the start of today's stage...

"Initially I think if it's obvious that the leader from the start is stronger then they should have the opportunity to race for the win. But, looking at this race, looking at yesterday I don't think there is such a big difference. The fact Kuss only got distanced 1km from the top of such a hard climb at the end of such a hard race, I feel like that's slightly different to a big gap.

"There shouldn't be any gifts in a Grand Tour win. It's one thing giving a stage but I don't think just because someone's worked for you for years you need to let them win, but I don't think that's the case anyway. He's good enough to be in the position he's in... and that's the funny thing, they played that card [earlier in the race to get Kuss in the lead], they rode super hard that day to get a gap and now they're changing their mind. 

"I feel for Kuss, he deserves a bit more respect, not necessarily from the riders, from the team. The team should be stronger with that [...] it was three of them, no other tactics came into play. If it was close for the podium, that's pretty much sewn up. Roglič isn't going to win this Vuelta so there was no real need for him to carry on and gain those extra seconds. He still could have won the stage and his position in third is still solid so he could have slowed up a bit."

14 September 2023, 11:36
Councillor urges police to charge "tourist cyclists" coming on cruise liners and "running around unsafe"
14 September 2023, 10:45
The GC showdown we didn't know we needed

All in their prime, who wins? 

X trending 14/9/2023

'IT Crowd are upping the pace here on the final climb, Froome looks in trouble, Roglič is dropped... here comes Vingegaard on the attack, Ayoade glued to his back wheel..."

14 September 2023, 10:32
Primark apologises for pulling out of cycle hub deal

Reading Borough Council is searching for an alternative venue for its town centre cycle hub plan — a facility with 82 secure bicycle spaces, plus maintenance space and bike loan service — after Primark pulled of an agreement to lease one of its vacant units.

The BBC reports that the council has asked for a full explanation after the retailer pulled out of the agreement to lease its former store in West Street for the facility, Primark saying it was due to a "change in circumstances".

Funding for the project is to come from the Department for Transport's Cabability Fund, and would amount to £249,454.

"Reading is really important to us, and we're committed to continuing to play an active role within the community and to supporting the town. We hope the cycle hub finds a suitable home soon," Primark said.

Councillor John Ennis said: "This is obviously hugely disappointing news for the council and Reading's cycle community having invested so much time and energy in this particular location for a cycle hub."

14 September 2023, 10:06
A unanimous majority...

'Ooh maybe I'll check in with the poll to see how... it's... going... ah...'

Live blog poll 14/9/23

 

14 September 2023, 09:03
Tech news round-up: New bikes galore + plenty more

Loads of news and releases to keep the tech team busy this week. I'm sure you've seen most of it already, but here's a handy round-up of it all in one place just to be sure...

> All new Roubaix SL8 is the "smoothest" and fastest endurance road bike ever, claims Specialized

That release came on the same day that Wahoo unveiled its new £1,400 Kickr trainer with "the closest real-world ride-feel" thanks to the addition of fore/aft movement. In short, it makes it act a little bit like a trainer on a rocker plate. As you alter your power, get in/out of the saddle, or readjust your position, the trainer is designed to move forward and backward with you.

> Wahoo introduces £1,400 Kickr Move indoor trainer with "the closest real-world ride-feel"

Oh, and if you are tempted to take your training indoors now the evenings aren't quite as long and enticing as they were a couple of months ago, Zwift's Watopia might be your destination of choice. 

2023 Tour of Watopia Zwift

The indoor cycling giant has announced a host of new features coming to its virtual world in the upcoming months. These include an expansion to Watopia and the return of the experimental gamified racing experience Tour of Watopia, plus Climb Portal difficulty scaling and much more.

Emily has all the key details of what you can expect around Zwift's virtual roads going forward... 

Fulcrum has some new wheels out, the "versatile and comfortable" Wind 42 and 57 carbon wheels for "road and light off-road riding", if you've got £1,250 knocking about for an upgrade.

2023 Fulcrum Wind 42 and 57 wheelset

And there's a new Liv endurance bike, with the announcement last night of the fifth generation of the Avail. More aero, lighter, 38mm tyre clearance... all the good stuff. 

2023 Liv Avail Pro 0.jpg

And for a sneak peak at some of the things we're currently reviewing, check out the latest edition of 'Five cool things', this week featuring the Garmin Edge 840 Solar cycling computer, plus stuff from Suunto, DJI, Tozo and more...

14 September 2023, 08:42
Appalling, disingenuous or perhaps a subtle tactical game? Your thoughts on La Vuelta
2023 Vuelta Primož Roglič and Jonas Vingegaard Angliru (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO)

While the poll results roll in, here are some of your thoughts...

kil0ran: "Kuss treatment is appalling. He clearly had a brief moment where he couldn't follow which subsequently he overcame because he was able to latch on to Landa's wheel. Landa did the job Primoz and Jonas should have done. Given that Bahrain Victorious were on the front for the early ramps — with Kuss right behind once Valter and Van Baarle popped — they effectively kept Sepp in red today, not Jumbo.

"It's a betrayal and brutal shameful behaviour. It's particularly hard to watch because until this race I've been a fan of Primoz and Jonas — even as a G fan I was delighted to see Primoz' redemption at the Giro. I'm not a fan of UAE as a team but I hope they flash some greenwashed green and bring Kuss in to support Pogacar next year. Revenge will be best served on the slopes of L'Alpe and Stelvio."

Tell us how you really feel!

Sepp Kuss Angliru 2023 Vuelta (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO)

henryb: "Roglič and Vingegaard saying that they 'want' Kuss to win the Vuelta is a bit disingenuous when it is in fact their choice whether they give him the support he needs (and which every Grand Tour winner needs) to win. If Kuss doesn't win the Vuelta, how hollow it will sound when Roglič or Vingegaard say: 'Well, we wanted him to win, we really did...'."

2023 Jumbo-Visma La Vuelta (Luis Angel Gomez/SprintCyclingAgency©2023/ASO)

A ray of hope from Rendel Harris? "I am possibly being naive here, but isn't it feasible that Jumbo Visma are playing a more subtle game than they are being given credit for, bringing their two superstars up as close to Kuss as they possibly can without overtaking him so that if he cracks today either Roglič or Vinegaard will be as far as possible ahead of potential challengers, and to keep them away from the JV podium shutout?

"If Vinegaard really had designs on the jersey why would he not have gone full gas in the final yesterday when on current form he could've easily picked up the nine seconds needed for it, especially if he had outsprinted Roglic for the ten seconds line bonus instead of the six he got?

"Like the majority of fans, I would love to see Kuss take a GT and I will be as loud as anybody in my condemnation of his teammates if they do the dirty on him, but until I see one of them deliberately seize the jersey, rather than putting more time into their rivals lower down the rankings without displacing Kuss, I'm going to withhold judgement.

"Of course, depending on what happens today, this comment may age very badly!"

14 September 2023, 08:30
POLL: Should Jumbo-Visma let Sepp Kuss win La Vuelta?

There's only one way to settle this...

Poll

14 September 2023, 08:00
"I just don't understand... I didn't enjoy watching that": David Millar (plus plenty more) in disbelief at Jumbo-Visma's Sepp Kuss treatment

The fallout from the Angliru stage rumbles on this morning, seemingly most of the cycling world despairing for Sepp Kuss' slip backwards towards, not rival teams baying for blood but instead... his own teammates... on his birthday too.

As we included in yesterday's post-stage live blog debrief, both Primoz Roglič and Jonas Vingegaard have said they want Kuss to win the Vuelta. Those comments coming not long after they had left him in the final stretches of the climb, rather than offering support like the American has to them on countless occasions. And while, yes, Kuss had told them to go, the images haven't sat well with many cycling fans and former pro riders...

David Millar said: "I just don't understand why they wouldn't wait. I've watched Sepp ride for them countless times while commentating these past years, I'm a huge fan of his. He's class. I didn't enjoy watching that today, and I love bike racing."

 "In Grand Tours the leaders rely on their team mates to get them through the days they're weak," Millar replied. "That's Sepp's job. Tables have turned here. I like the idea that sport isn't all rational number crunching, that occasionally emotional decisions win over. They're the greatest stories, and the reason sport can be so life affirming. Today was not life-affirming, it was quite miserable in fact, when it so easily could have been wonderful."

This was the post-stage discussion on GCN, Sean Kelly saying he thinks it's "unfair":

 Anyone got a case for the defence?

With another big mountain stage, the last challenging one before Madrid (after this we've got two sprints and a relentlessly punchy medium mountain 208km world champs-style stage) today could be decisive... I'd love to know what the rest of Jumbo's domestiques and staff think about the whole situation...

Anyway, get your thoughts in the comments. Are we all far too romantic? Should Jumbo-Visma let their best man win? Do you want to see Roglič and Vingegaard let one of their most reliable teammates have his day in the sun?

Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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55 comments

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quiff | 7 months ago
5 likes

Moments of maddening motornormativity #3,426: on the school run, a driver has parked his large van diagonally - front end in the road, rear end taking up most of the pavement. The open rear door is taking up the rest of the pavement. He sees us approaching and makes a show of closing the door for us. We pass, and he mutters under his breath "well, say thank you then".

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to quiff | 7 months ago
5 likes

quiff wrote:

Moments of maddening motornormativity #3,426: on the school run, a driver has parked his large van diagonally - front end in the road, rear end taking up most of the pavement. The open rear door is taking up the rest of the pavement. He sees us approaching and makes a show of closing the door for us. We pass, and he mutters under his breath "well, say thank you then".

I had a driver do that to me when I was crossing a zebra and they hadn't expected me to which involved them having to slam on their brakes.

"Why yes, thank you for not murdering me"

Avatar
brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
6 likes

hawkinspeter wrote:

quiff wrote:

Moments of maddening motornormativity #3,426: on the school run, a driver has parked his large van diagonally - front end in the road, rear end taking up most of the pavement. The open rear door is taking up the rest of the pavement. He sees us approaching and makes a show of closing the door for us. We pass, and he mutters under his breath "well, say thank you then".

I had a driver do that to me when I was crossing a zebra and they hadn't expected me to which involved them having to slam on their brakes.

"Why yes, thank you for not murdering me"

I made a decision a long time ago not to thank drivers for stopping if I'm crossing at a zebra.  I mean, that's what they're supposed to do!  I don't expect a pedestrian to thank me for stopping at one if I'm on wheels, either.

Avatar
Rendel Harris replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
7 likes

brooksby wrote:

I made a decision a long time ago not to thank drivers for stopping if I'm crossing at a zebra.  I mean, that's what they're supposed to do!  I don't expect a pedestrian to thank me for stopping at one if I'm on wheels, either.

I can see both sides of the argument on that one, I tend to come down in favour of saying thank you; after all, the waiter is supposed to bring me my dinner, the nurse is supposed to give me my flu shot, the bin man is supposed to empty my bins, I still say thank you to them. I actually even wave thank you on pelican crossings, I don't regard it as "thank you for not killing me/not breaking the law" but just in acknowledgement that they have had a little time added to their journey (albeit mandatorily) for my convenience.

Like you, I certainly don't expect thanks for stopping at a zebra, but when I do get it it does just brighten the day up a little bit at no cost to the person saying thank you, so...

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Mad Franky replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
5 likes

I now draw the line at thanking dog walkers for restraining their hounds from jumping up at me as I ride past on the local shared use path... had a "thanks would have been nice" the other day but FFS it's the least they could do.

Avatar
chrisonabike replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
3 likes

Hmm... I'm with you in practice (enlightened self-interest - human interactions especially when cheerful interactions make me happier).  However surely a closer analogy would be thanking the waiter for not mistiming and pouring your soup all over you?

Avatar
quiff replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
5 likes

My rule of thumb is, the ones who approach at a sensible speed and slow in anticipation of me crossing a zebra get a little wave. The ones who screech to a last minute stop and look irritated for having to do so just get a raised eyebrow. I figure pelicans add an extra step between pedestrian and driver, so it's never occurred to me to do anything. [EDIT: in fact, perhaps most drivers should be thanking pedestrians at pelicans - we've had to wait for the convenience of [n] drivers before the lights change.] 

Another unbelievable incident seen yesterday: 4 or 5 cars are queuing behind a bus at a bus stop in a 20 zone. The queue straddles a zebra crossing. Driver at back of queue sees there is no oncoming traffic, accelerates at speed past the queue and bus, on wrong side of road through zebra crossing and past a junction.      

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
2 likes

Rendel Harris wrote:

I can see both sides of the argument on that one, I tend to come down in favour of saying thank you; after all, the waiter is supposed to bring me my dinner, the nurse is supposed to give me my flu shot, the bin man is supposed to empty my bins, I still say thank you to them. I actually even wave thank you on pelican crossings, I don't regard it as "thank you for not killing me/not breaking the law" but just in acknowledgement that they have had a little time added to their journey (albeit mandatorily) for my convenience.

Like you, I certainly don't expect thanks for stopping at a zebra, but when I do get it it does just brighten the day up a little bit at no cost to the person saying thank you, so...

For me, it boils down to whether someone is performing a service for me, such as a waiter, nurse, bin person etc. or whether someone is simply following the mandatory rules. If a driver stops before someone has started crossing a zebra and politely waves them across, then that would be worthy of a thanks, but otherwise just stopping at a zebra or red light would be the minimum expected behaviour - not worthy of a thanks.

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
2 likes

brooksby wrote:

I made a decision a long time ago not to thank drivers for stopping if I'm crossing at a zebra.  I mean, that's what they're supposed to do!  I don't expect a pedestrian to thank me for stopping at one if I'm on wheels, either.

Funnily enough, I've had pedestrians thank me for stopping at the zebra just before the suspension bridge (Leigh Woods side). It might have something to do with me going quite quickly and having to slam on the brakes to stop in time. Mind you, I've also had pedestrians elsewhere apologise for them causing me to stop at a zebra on a bike.

I do thank drivers if they're courteous such as moving to allow more space for filtering (an especially noble act as it involves them being aware of filtering traffic behind them and how their road position isn't helpful) or deliberately letting me out of a turning etc.

Avatar
brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
0 likes

hawkinspeter wrote:

Funnily enough, I've had pedestrians thank me for stopping at the zebra just before the suspension bridge (Leigh Woods side). It might have something to do with me going quite quickly and having to slam on the brakes to stop in time. Mind you, I've also had pedestrians elsewhere apologise for them causing me to stop at a zebra on a bike.

How many pedestrians have sworn at you for not stopping for them on the raised traffic table which isn't a crossing, on the other side of the Suspension Bridge?  In my case, quite a few...

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
2 likes

brooksby wrote:

How many pedestrians have sworn at you for not stopping for them on the raised traffic table which isn't a crossing, on the other side of the Suspension Bridge?  In my case, quite a few...

No-one has, but I think all the times I've gone across that, there's been significant vehicle traffic, so I haven't been the main obstacle to them. Thinking about it, they should make that a zebra or pelican as there's paths leading to and from it.

Avatar
brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
2 likes

hawkinspeter wrote:

brooksby wrote:

How many pedestrians have sworn at you for not stopping for them on the raised traffic table which isn't a crossing, on the other side of the Suspension Bridge?  In my case, quite a few...

No-one has, but I think all the times I've gone across that, there's been significant vehicle traffic, so I haven't been the main obstacle to them. Thinking about it, they should make that a zebra or pelican as there's paths leading to and from it.

More than that, it has textured paving at each end of the table which tells visually impaired people that it is a crossing...

Avatar
quiff replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
2 likes

See this quite a lot on raised "crossings" in Hyde Park - as far as I can tell, they don't afford pedestrians priority to cross, but I have had a few people screech to a halt in front of me for them. 

E.g. https://goo.gl/maps/RZjhtbMyv9JrH3PD9

Edit: just spotted on Streetview there are "raised pedestrian crossing" warning signs. I'm now a bit confused. Do pedestrians in fact have priority here after all? The road markings just suggest speed hump, not crossing.

https://goo.gl/maps/BgjyrU4931R6bSNY7

Avatar
andystow replied to quiff | 7 months ago
4 likes

Thanks!

Avatar
SoliD | 7 months ago
1 like

All this talk means JV aren't having to answer questions about how they are so far ahead of the competition everywhere which is the question that should be being asked as when we've seen dominance like this in the past it hasn't been through legal methods.

Avatar
cmedred | 7 months ago
1 like

Let's forget Sepp Kuss and consider the business aspects here. First off, Jumbo appears to be losing the all-important PR battle. The carefully cultivated, nice guy images of Roglič and Vingegaard are starting to look more like the ruthlessness of one L.A. But that might be the least of it. What riders with any aspiriations of winning a race now and then are going to want to ride for Jumbo if Kuss doesn't win now given how his supposed "team"mates hung him out to dry on successive mountain stages? And how many super domestiques are there out there who would want to sign for a team for which you are expected to give all but guaranteed you'll never get anything back? 

Avatar
peted76 | 7 months ago
4 likes

If Jumbo don't double down and protect Kuss's jersey today, it'll bring on the biggest shit storm of public opinion that cycling has seen since Lord Voldermart himself came out on Oprah. 

Avatar
Clem Fandango | 7 months ago
1 like

This debate reares its head in one form or another every so often doesn't it?  As a domestique your job is to support your team leader, not work against them (cough cough Chris Froome 2012).  But when you get in to a situation like this, when do the roles reverse? When do you do the "right" thing & repay the service such riders have given you (seem to remember Froome went on to rely on Richie Porte & Wout Poels et al quite a lot after 2012 & probably had a different view on roles & who was stronger).  Ah the unwritten rules of cycling - a wonderful if infuriating thing.

Kuss is in red & has looked very good value for it so should PR & JV now accept that & be team players?  OR given that they are the highly paid "faces" of Jumbo Visma (the notional "team leaders" on paper) wouldn't the team then want them to be front & centre & winning the big races?  It's a problem they've created for themselves with their embarrassment of riches in the talent department, but a nice one to have if you are they.     It's not unlike F1 & teams ordering one driver to allow the other to pass because it suits the team's politics & goals (and who knows - contractual obligations?) and creates the same level of debate and outrage.

Personally I'm in Kuss's corner - it'd be a great story & well deserved.  Jumbo may well yet "do the right thing".  But if Kuss does win it's only going to create a few more political headaches behind the scenes though.  Can you imagine the potential sulking & dummy spitting in the Jumbo camp..... 

 

 

Avatar
kil0ran | 7 months ago
4 likes

Kuss treatment is appalling. He clearly had a brief moment where he couldn't follow which subsequently he overcame because he was able to latch on to Landa's wheel. Landa did the job Primoz and Jonas should have done. Given that BV were on the front for the early ramps - with Kuss right behind once Valter and Van Baarle popped - they effectively kept Sepp in red today, not Jumbo. It's a betrayal and brutal shameful behaviour. It's particularly hard to watch because until this race I've been a fan of Primoz and Jonas - even as a G fan I was delighted to see Primoz' redemption at the Giro.

I'm not a fan of UAE as a team but I hope they flash some greenwashed green and bring Kuss in to support Pogacar next year. Revenge will be best served on the slopes of L'Alpe and Stelvio.

Avatar
Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
2 likes

I am possibly being naive here, but isn't it feasible that Jumbo Visma are playing a more subtle game than they are being given credit for, bringing their two superstars up as close to Kuss as they possibly can without overtaking him so that if he cracks today either Roglic or Vinegaard will be as far as possible ahead of potential challengers, and to keep them away from the JV podium shutout? If Vinegaard really had designs on the jersey why would he not have gone full gas in the final yesterday when on current form he could've easily picked up the nine seconds needed for it, especially if he had outsprinted Roglic for the ten seconds line bonus instead of the six he got? Like the majority of fans, I would love to see Kuss take a GT and I will be as loud as anybody in my condemnation of his teammates if they do the dirty on him, but until I see one of them deliberately seize the jersey, rather than putting more time into their rivals lower down the rankings without displacing Kuss, I'm going to withhold judgement.

Of course, depending on what happens today, this comment may age very badly!

Avatar
Jimmy Ray Will replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
5 likes

I think that's exactly how the JV PR team would like to spin it too...

As mentioned, they could have checked the pace for a few moments to allow Kuss to recollect himself and continued on collectively. 

Or more effectively. Let Roglic go away alone, leaving Landa to do the chasing, before hitting him towards the top, in a repeat of the Tourmalet stage.

However, the challenge here is not that Roglic and Vingegaard want to take the win from Kuss, its that neither want to finish on the third step of the podium. This is where the politics actually lie. 

Both want to be JV top dog. Jonas will feel he is superior, yet he's not beaten Rog before. Rog will feel he is every bit as good and only bad luck and alternative calendars have kept him from tour wins. 

In many ways, its a shame that Kuss is in the middle of this, as otherwise I think we'd be witnessing a brutal bit of inter-team rivalry. 

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Destroyer666 replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
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Well written, I agree completely!

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Simon E replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
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Rendel Harris wrote:

I am possibly being naive here, but isn't it feasible that Jumbo Visma are playing a more subtle game than they are being given credit for

This is something that is being lost in all the emotional noise. With the level of investment and the prestige of the win there really isn't an enormous amount of room for "it would be nice if" sentiment in tactical decision-making. If JV somehow cocked up we'd all be hanging them out to dry as incompetent.

In the end we are not partial to the conversations behind closed doors and I think that putting words into riders' and directors' mouths, analysing actions and even body language during and after the stage, we distant observers are just making an huge amount of noise on supposition and precious little evidence.

Like the 3 ex-pro riders in the TV studio, I don't like to see the Roglic & Vingegaard ride away from Kuss in the red jersey on a crucial stage when the lead is not at risk. But I can't bring myself to get worked up about it. I'm just an ordinary cyclist, sat at home watching a video. I cannot get that emotionally invested in the actions of a team of superstar riders that I won't ever meet on a hillside in Spain.

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Rendel Harris replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
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So I was right! Maybe…I suspect we won't know the whole truth of who was planning what and what the management ordered until the end of career autobiographies - if then.

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henryb | 7 months ago
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Roglic and Vingegaard saying that they 'want' Kuss to win the Vuelta is a bit disingenuous when it is in fact their choice whether they give him the support he needs (and which every Grand Tour winner needs) to win. If Kuss doesn't win the Vuelta, how hollow it will sound when Roglic or Vingegaard say "Well, we wanted him to win, we really did..."

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