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by Shane Stokes
September 13, 2017
Pedersen wins opening stage of the PostNord Danmark Rundt; Bertazzo best after opening two stages of the Tour of China I; Nibali diagnosed with fracture, will miss worlds; Canyon/SRAM team signs Barnes, Klein and Riffel; Defending champions QuickStep Floors names teams for worlds team time trial; The SHEcret Pro: Worlds, Aussie selection drama, transfer travails; Cycling Australia ends support for Orica-Scott women’s and development teams; Serious injuries on the rise for Victorian road cyclists; Video: Tour de Moselle crash
Let’s not mess about — the World Championships are upon us already. The racing hasn’t started yet, but teams are positioning themselves and we’ve had scandals, politics and controversies about team selections already.
Obviously we have to talk about Australia. WTF! Maybe that Simon Jones guy is actually still working for British Cycling. Honestly, it’s just laughable. The misguided decision to select five women when they could have taken seven (actually eight because they also have the Oceania Champion) makes it appear that Cycling Australia is actively reducing the chances of Australia getting a result.
Jones claims that “in the elite men … in the last 10 years, 50% of the winning teams had teams of three or less because what’s important to win a world championship is a quality athlete.”
Annnnd if you bothered to actually check the women’s results (it’s as if he has a male-centric view of the world … odd huh?) in the last 10 years in the Women’s World Championship Road Race, 90% of the winning teams had more than three riders. And 80% had teams of six riders or more. To be honest, I shouldn’t complain too much – it’s a decision that just helped my country.
There are other factors at play here too. World Championships are always harder and faster than any other race during the year. Half the peloton has a job that is just for the first half of the race, so the pace is just naturally higher. More is better, I say, when it comes to pairs of legs to cover attacks, or help position the leaders at key moments, or just share the workload in general.
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