2019 Pro Tour

Kangaeroo

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Jan 24, 2018
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Tonight will be the first test for GC contenders and certainly, an entertaining stage too.
I also resubscribed to JSports as for the past few years as the streaming I was watching was stopping too often. Really irritating when that happens during the final km , or a key move…
If I'm not wrong, one of the commentators is the ex-pro Robbie McEwen so I guess JSports does use the SBS broadcast. Aussies could better answer. Beyond the good analysis they do, I think they are very quick to react and to recognize accurately the pros seen on the images.
Yes, it is Robbie McEwan and I think the other bloke is Matthew Keenan.
 
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Elzico2012

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Jan 29, 2014
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NTT will certainly help (or request) to bring J-riders to the worlds scene
Going to Europe when young is a good gateway, Arashiro and Beppu did race in amateur teams in France before becoming pros. When Arashiro was there, it was actually a program at that time bringing some young J-riders to this team (ES Aumale).
I guess that facing with a much tougher racing environment in Europe, and also overseas life, helped both behind their proper engine, to stay long in WT teams.
 
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Kangaeroo

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Jan 24, 2018
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NTT will certainly help (or request) to bring J-riders to the worlds scene
Going to Europe when young is a good gateway, Arashiro and Beppu did race in amateur teams in France before becoming pros. When Arashiro was there, it was actually a program at that time bringing some young J-riders to this team (ES Aumale).
I guess that facing with a much tougher racing environment in Europe, and also overseas life, helped both behind their proper engine, to stay long in WT teams.
Yeah, I am being unfair to guys like Arashiro and Beppu. I guess I should have said something like Grand Tour winner-class.
Considering the caliber of riders in Japan, the cycling culture, infrastructure and terrain, there really should be a Grand Tour contender out there, even if Europe is tough: Lots of Japanese have got the talent and the balls to do it. (Eri Yonamine is pretty good on the women's circuit, so perhaps I am being even more unfair)
 
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Elzico2012

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Yeah, I am being unfair to guys like Arashiro and Beppu. I guess I should have said something like Grand Tour winner-class.
Considering the caliber of riders in Japan, the cycling culture, infrastructure and terrain, there really should be a Grand Tour contender out there, even if Europe is tough: Lots of Japanese have got the talent and the balls to do it. (Eri Yonamine is pretty good on the women's circuit, so perhaps I am being even more unfair)
You are right, there are certainly some talented cyclists and hidden talents (who chose an other sport) with the genetic and potential to become a top class racer. Remember Nakano Koichi, the big star of the track in the 70-80s.
Beyond the detection of young talents, having harder and especially longer official races for the youngsters, on public roads, would certainly help in my opinion. Official races here are too short ( i am not talking about cyclosport races like very long enduros) .
I think the JBCF top Katayama Ukio wanna change the JBCF circuit to make it more competitive with additional categories and longer races.
More Niseko or Okinawa like races will be good for racers.
 
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Elzico2012

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When watching TdF yesterday and seeing the Argentinian Champion, that reminded me that apart the Colombians we see more and more South and Central American riders recently. With also a few top races there, I realized agents and teams turn their eyes there to detect talents, and not Asia.
Though Japan is the only Asian country with racers in the Worlds Junior and U-23
Just some thoughts
 
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baribari

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May 28, 2010
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Fukushima
The basic problem as I see it with road racing in Japan is that there simply aren't enough races to do. Racers in Europe and the US actually have more races every weekend than they could possibly do, whereas a Japanese racer could do every sanctioned race on the calendar and still not have that many race days in their legs every year.

This is largely because Japanese laws make organizing races on public roads absurdly difficult and expensive. Due to having the world's most expensive highway tolls (and to a lesser extent, relatively expensive gasoline), you're also never going to be able to drive across the whole country in search of races on a shoestring budget a la Phil Gaimon in his earlier days. So road racing remains a fringe hobby in Japan and an even more fringe profession.

Also, Japan is a vary mountainous country, but it's not a very high country, so the Japanese don't have any particular advantage like, say, Columbians or Peruvians do when it comes to altitude adaptation. There's much more money in baseball, soccer, and keirin, so anyone with talent tends to go there instead.
 

Kangaeroo

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These are really interesting points, @Elzico2012 and @baribari
I wonder how much wealth plays a part, too? I think Aussies punch beyond their weight on the World Tour (like most sports). They first started heading to Europe in the late 1970s, early 1980s, notably Phil Anderson and Allan Peiper. Although people say Peiper was poor, both these guys came from affluent backgrounds, as did their predecessors who hadn't left quite as big a mark. Then, cycling (like rowing, rugby and hockey) was essentially a rich kid's sport. I think it's more accessible now.
Is cycling a rich kid's sport here? Is that limiting development of world-class road racers?
 

baribari

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Being an equipment-heavy sport where crashes happen, it does require a fairly significant initial and ongoing investment. The number of young dudes riding S-Works frames on Gokiso wheels is a little... disconcerting. That said, I suspect MOST of the cost is actually the cost of competing at a high level (travel, hotels, entry fees, coaching).


Irrespective of income, I would guess that most junior riders had parents who rode. I can't even imagine my lower middle class parents buying me a $1000 bicycle when I was 12 or so, much less a $3-4,000 one, because they didn't ride bikes. $300 would have been an expensive bike to them (and me until I started cycling as a hobby).
 
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speedwobble

Speeding Up
Jun 26, 2017
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Another problem in Japan for wannabe roadie pros is that an increasingly common route, junior mountain biking, specifically XC, is not big in Japan. XC has particular problems in that it needs courses over lots of land that is often in private ownership in Japan. Selling folks rides up a ski resort to hit a handful of DH trails is possible here, but XC courses are often just trails that are there and are not maintained. Many parts of Japan are far too wet and jungly to have trails that can last long with passive management. They're building a center for the Olympics though, and I hope that generates more interest.

Sagan, Froome, Cadel Evans, Fuglsang etc. all rode mountain bikes. Some of the world's greatest male and female riders still do.
 

Elzico2012

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Jan 29, 2014
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A great great TdF and real racing. I wish Pinot had not abandoned and fight with Bernal, but that’s how it is. Bernal with his two decisive attacks in the Alps far from stage the finish proved he was the strongest
I would just say kudos to Alaphilippe, who deserved the Podium, Wellens who deserved the Polka Dot jersey, and Thomas de Gendt, his stage win was for me the most impressive in this Tour.
And the Lanterne Rouge, the Dutchman Sebastian Langeveld.
My bet 3 weeks ago was actually 1. Thomas, 2 or 3 Fulgsang/Pinot. At least one made the podium

Ewan, Yates, Viviani are now members of the below list
http://www.wikizero.biz/index.php?q=aHR0cHM6Ly9lbi53aWtpcGVkaWEub3JnL3dpa2kvTGlzdF9vZl9yaWRlcnNfd2l0aF9zdGFnZV93aW5zX2F0X2FsbF90aHJlZV9jeWNsaW5nX0dyYW5kX1RvdXJz
 
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Kangaeroo

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Jan 24, 2018
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