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  • Michele

    Good analysis CT.

    Nairo for me still. Half the climbing kms still to go.

    • Chuck6421

      Indeed.
      Nairo’s stoicism (not to menion his power-to-weight advantage) will serve him well toward the end.
      Dumoullin’s youthful exuberance caused him to blow his wad prematurely.

    • George Darroch

      Will have to play good defense. Are Giant-Sunweb strong and smart enough to hold back the major GC teams – we’ll find out.

    • jules

      I think Nairo too. Once it gets steep he’ll come into his own.

      • I think stage 16 could be quite instructive. If Dumoulin gets isolated early, it could make for a very interesting stage. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Quintana and Nibali try to drop Dumoulin on the first of the two Stelvio ascents, if not on the Mortirolo if they’re feeling really strong. If they can take back some time — and perhaps more importantly, show that Dumoulin is vulnerable — they’ll take a lot of confidence into the final few stages.

        • velocite

          Dumoulin seems to be so good at managing his resources that dropping him is not enough – if you don’t keep going, he will. Fascinating contest between a big engine – TD is 186mm/71kg, and a little one: Q is 166 mm. Quintana’s BMI is higher than Dumoulin’s. I’d love to know their FTPs. The only thing certain is that it will be a fascinating contest.

  • Oto

    Fingers crossed for Tom D…such a modest guy. I think Quintana will pull back time but Tom will still win the Giro…

  • Patrick Murphy

    I still think that Quintana and Nibali will come on a lot stronger in the final week, Movistar have the team to really put pressure on TD but I personally hope he hangs on. The biggest question for me was what the hell was NQ doing on stage 14 letting TD come past him, he just looked totally clueless.

  • My main concern with TD is the depth of his team or the lack thereof. Also, having lost his key helper for the 3rd week in Wilco Kelderman in the Blockhaus crash does not help matters at all. Good luck to him. Looks like Nairo, or Nibali if he gets his “check up” like last year.

  • Stewie Griffin

    Laurens De Plus at age 22, impressive master domestique of Bob Jungels, climbing better than Bob too in his first grand tour

  • cthenn

    Going there… I wonder if TJ represents the limit of what a clean rider can do. Now he was dropped pretty early on in the race, couldn’t even hang on the first MTF, so obviously there is something not fully right with him. But he’s not a garbage rider, far from it. Yet he cannot keep up with guys who blister up mountains in times relative to the fastest of the crazy doping era. People are fooled into thinking things are better now, much more clean. Well the ways these guys ride, the times they put up, their power numbers, how fresh they appear after these GT stages day after day…I have a hard time accepting things are cleaner.

    TJ himself cannot seem to figure it out. He’s not feeling bad, he says he can’t follow the insane pace set by the top guys. I have to believe he’s competing in a sport that doesn’t allow clean athletes to win, at least at the top of the top level.

    • DaveRides

      When discussing TJVG, remember two things:

      1. His top ten finishes at the Tour came in what were arguably two of the weakest editions in living memory. The US media have to big note him (and Talansky) because US viewers don’t care about international sports they can’t win.

      2. it’s rather naive to make a “clean” assumption about any rider who grew up in the Telekom (aka T-Mobile aka HTC-Columbia aka Highroad) structure and now rides for the whitewashed version of the old Phonak team.

      • cthenn

        So if we cast aspersions on BMC, and their relative cleanliness, then of course that speaks volumes about the other riders who blow the doors off him.

    • Andy B

      Maybe hes just not built for it?
      I know I’m not..

  • DaveRides

    Talking point #9 – the inconsistency of the commissaires’ decisions on the TT stage, throwing the book at Campanaerts but not taking the opportunity to make a killing by fining every rider who giggled at the name of the town hosting the second time check.

  • Observer

    Tom Dumoulin has one advantage though, while he may lose time in the high mountains, he still has one time trial remaining. So he can’t be dismissed yet.

  • marc

    Here’s hoping those nutjob idiot supporters that insist on getting on camera on the climbs don’t ruin someones race!

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