Paris - France  - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  Andre Greipel (Germany / Team Lotto Soudal)  pictured during stage 21 of the 2016 Tour de France from Chantilly to Paris, 113.00 km - photo Dion Kerckhoffs//Davy Rietbergen/Cor Vos © 2016
  • Lounge

    I think most combative for this stage should go to the motorcycle Gendarme who was riding with the stage leaders. Some beautiful work up the Joux Plane dragging running idiots out of the way and pushing them off the road!!

  • pedr09

    Wow, what a disappointment. That was an absolute procession. I cannot fathom why there were no attacks (apart from Rodriguez who Sky weren’t concerned about). I’m talking about Richie Porte, Quintana, Yates, Valverde, Meintjes, Martin. WTF? What did they want to get out of this last chance to move up? It would appear, the answer was “nothing”. It’s not like Thomas’ pace was too much for them up or down hill. It was total capitulation which was depressing to watch. I expected these guys to light it up on the last climb and when that didn’t happen, I thought, well surely on the wet descent, but again, no. Then, 500m out from the finish, they had a bit of a sprint… WTF? Why even bother? Just sit there behind Sky like you did the whole frick’n stage and be done with it. It’s not like after sprinting for the line and gaining 10 seconds you can say “well I gave it go”.

  • Michael Sproul

    Kittel’s loves a wee hissy fit doesn’t he!

    • Stompin

      … ask his mechanic, hehe

    • Love his German Boomerang technique…

      • Irenemlopez1

        <<o. ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????:::::::!!be948p:….,….

  • Dave

    I wonder whether Kittel is starting to regret walking out on Giant and switching to Etixx?

    For all the disappointment of the team deciding he wasn’t in good enough condition to take to the Tour last year, they served him better than Etixx are doing so far.

    • bigdo

      that’s a lil bit unfair…

      • Dave

        How so? He left a well organised leadout team who all loved to work for him and went to a team which is divided between him and a GC contender (Jungels at this year’s Giro, Martin and Alaphilippe at the Tour).

        That was good enough to get him a few quick wins at the Giro while Greipel was still fighting back from injury, but at the Tour he was left to fight for himself.

  • adam

    Why leave Armstrong out of the yellow jersey comparison, but then feature Zabel for the green?

    • Dave

      Because one was disqualified and the other wasn’t?

      • adam

        Of course. But a missed opportunity on the part of this journalist to highlight Zabel’s confession to doping. Not disqualified but totally discredited, and unworthy of comparison.

        • Dave

          For the sake of consistency, the line has to be drawn somewhere.

          I think going with the official results is a good place to draw the line when comparing statistics. Where do you think the line should be drawn when comparing statistics, and how do you plan on ensuring consistency?

          That’s not to say that the line may need to be drawn elsewhere for other purposes, such as offering TV commentary gigs (which Zabel lost) or other subjective awards (which O’Grady lost).

          • adam

            I agree with the need for consistency – so let’s avoid using disqualified and/or discredited athletes as benchmarks for achievement.

            • Dave

              That’s good for subjective issues like “should we put this guy in our hall of fame” but you need real consistency for objective comparisons.

              • philipmcvey

                I agree – if the organiser’s own stats don’t put a red line through someone’s results then you have to count them. And it will be a moot point two years from now once Sagan takes his seventh green jersey. Meanwhile Virenque still holds the record for mountain jerseys. Sigh.

                • Dave

                  Not only the organiser, but the relevant governing bodies of the sport are also in agreement that Zabel won his green jerseys in accordance with the rules in place at the time.

                  I’d love to see a red line put through the records of the proven doper Merckx (I was not a Cavendish fan until last week when Merckx dissing him was the final straw) but I can accept it is not going to happen.

                  At some point the results need to be set in stone, they can’t remain in flux forever or the sport will never stop being a joke. Just about every other sport accepts that shit happens and instead works to reduce the chance of it being repeated (e.g. cricket – introducing DRS was a far better response to the 2005 Ashes farce than just retrospectively overturning the result) rather than fixating on the past. Time for cycling to grow up, properly confront its past and move into the future.

                  • philipmcvey

                    Interesting comparison with DRS – even though that Ashes series hinged upon an honest mistake rather than anything underhanded. At least that’s how I remember it.

                    With cricket a good comparison is Pakistan in the 80s when home umpires seemed to think home batsmen were never LBW – leading to the appointment of neutral umpires. There’s been no retroactive move to lop 20 runs from Javed Miandad’s home batting average. The body line series is an apt comparison too. That was ‘cheating’ after the fact, but well within the rules at the time. And again, nobody is asking for that series to be awarded to Australia.

                    If you wipe Merckx’s wins you MUST wipe Anquetil’s and Coppi’s – if you kept extrapolating that line you’d end up with a pretty spartan looking honour board. Better to just call them for what they are; results that were valid according to the rules and ethics of the times and aim to make current and future results as legitimate as they can be. If you were to be totally objective the question would be what is it that makes Armstrong’s case so different that he’s had his wins wiped? Armstrong admitted to doping, Anquetil admitted to doping – one has five tours to his name the other has none. I am far from an Armstrong fan – but there’s a clear double standard at work there.

              • adam

                It’s not subjective at all. To the contrary we know – objectively – that both athletes cheated, in the example we are using for our discussion. I think this is a more ethically inclusive position.

                • Dave

                  Of course it is subjective, you’re shifting the goalposts to wherever you find them convenient at the time.

                  Do you discredit Cadel Evans for consulting with Dr Michele Ferrari? If not, your own position doesn’t have any internal consistency.

                  What about Bernard Hinault, perhaps he needs a few retrospective penalties for interfering with spectators like Froome received this year?

                  • adam

                    Same goalposts, and completely objective. If an athlete has been disqualified through testing or confessed to doping ie we objectively know they cheated, let’s not use them as the basis for comparison. I invite the journalist to consider this, and I’ll sign off here on this topic, thanks for the discussion.

                    • philipmcvey

                      Fair point, but the problem is that you’d then be putting a line through both Anquetil and Coppi (at the very least). Fignon also admitted to amphetamine use. Then you have Riis and Ullrich. Pretty soon you’re left with no benchmarks at all. I’d say that we should just draw a line and use comparisons from the post-Armstrong era only but there’s still been high profile positives since then. Comparing eras is going to have to involve some compromise – along the lines of accepting that the results were valid at the time they were achieved.

                  • H20

                    Since no one seems to have any proof that Ferrari ever gave Evans advice about peds, or that Evans took such advice, that’s a pretty bizarre question.

                    • Dave

                      Ah yes, the good old “Cadel’s a mate, mates don’t dope.”

                      I’m sure he was just going to Ferrari for advice on the best pasta/tomato ratio to eat after a stage each night.

                    • H20

                      Ah yes, the good old “I have no proof, but I just love abusing other people” tactic.
                      I’m sure you would just love such a low standard being applied to accusations about you and the people you love.

                      Your own standard of honesty is obviously pretty dubious because you twisted a post saying that there was no proof of doping and made it into a claim that there was no doping, but that doesn’t mean that everyone else is like that.

  • bigdo

    The Gorilla!!!

  • pervertt

    Amid the glory for Froome, Greipel et al, it was a little sad to see the last of Le Blaireau, Bernard Hinault. He has a a fixture of French cycling since I took an interest in the sport in the 1980s. Bonne retraite!

  • Lance won the tour at least three times. It’s only a matter of time before the history books are re-written again.

    • Rupert the Super Bear

      go away you twit

  • david__g

    I can’t deal with the clashing green on Sagan’s bike.

    • Andy B

      Not the best looking custom bike.

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