TDFR 2014 - stage -21
  • Legstrong

    Not a wise career move, IMO (assuming he is going to Etixx). Sure, Giant-Alpecin isn’t for him anymore with the rise of Tom and John winning 2 monuments. He should pick a team with a dedicated train for him. He will surely miss Koen De Kort leadout. Although, he could still freelance and win the sprints with his raw power alone.

    • hshx

      Why wouldn’t it be a wise move when Etixx has one of the most solid lead out train out there? He can also hone his Classics skills with the abundance of specialists there assuming he doesn’t want to be known just as a pure sprinter.

      • RIPVDB

        Because (a) a key part of the EQS sprint Tain is being dismantled with the move of Cav, Renshaw and others to DD and (b) Kittel is never going to be a classics contender other than MSR – he is a pure sprinter in the line of Van Poppel, Abdu, McEwen, Cipo etc

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    • Dave

      Not to mention that Etixx has a sprinter for the future in Fernando Gaviria.

      Kittel would be a case of short-term opportunism on the part of Etixx if they took him.

  • SpaceKnight

    The ugliest transfer in cycling in recent history and the arguments don`t add up, at least for next year.

    This year: Kittel was duped for the tour with proven lack of form, my interpretation was that the team protected the rider against himself, choosing that over sponsorship wishes to have Kittel at the tour.

    Next year:

    The team has virtually no change in the roster, his leadout train is still there. a bunch of non climbing hard hitters.

    Dumoulin will focus on the Olympic time trial, no full GC team in the tour.

    The Etixx team will have no dedicated lead out. Cavendish had the same problems: this team is build for riding echelons and racing, not for calculated clinical lead outs. (and Cavendish was a lot more capable to deal with that then Kittel)

    The Etixx team has Multiple goals in almost every race, hardly ever a dedicated one trick pony team.

    Overall:

    No improvement for next year, maybe after that but he could just as well have fullfilled his contract and move the next year.

    The Giant-alpacin team was build around Kittel (and Degenkolb) Alpacin might feel unjustly treated and leave after their contract is done, Kittel caries the responsibility for the team and now just walks away from it.

    Lefevre gains a sponsor by nipping them away from Lotto Soudal and devaluating the sponsorship of Alpacin. Good for Etixx, but undermining the value and trustworthiness to sponsors of cycling as a whole. Lefevre is once again a weaselling opportunist.

    Conclusion: the ugliest transfer in cycling for a long time.

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