(SPOILERS) Tour de Suisse 2012

Yamabushi

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#1
I just finished watching Stage 4 of the Tour de Suisse. Sagan is a freaking monster!! He's won 3 out 4 stages thus far. If you go back to the Tour of California, he's won 8 out his last 12 starts! Any way you slice it, that's damn impressive! I can't wait to see him square off with Cavendish in the TDF!
 

Phil

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#3
Sagan again...

Can someone help me pigeon-hole this guy? There was a tweet recently about how he has a billion more wins than anyone else at his age; I had thought he was a Boasson Hagen type, strong all-rounder with a finishing kick, but recent performances he looks like a pure sprinter with a Gilbert-like uphill kick, incredible descending skills (TdS 2010...) and pretty good climbing chops...
 

Yamabushi

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#5
Stage 6

I finally got to watch Stage 6, and WOW! How the hell did Sagan thread himself through that twisting course and masses of riders? At one point he was totally squeezed off in to the barrier. This kid has got nerves of steel, amazing bike handling ability, and a jet fuel afterburner of a sprint! 9 wins in his last 14 starts, freaking amazing!!

In addition to all of that, while it hasn't been on display in the Tour de Suisse, he can descend with the best of them, namely Cancellara and Nibali. He can get over the hills reasonably well, but his one weakness is the big mountainous climbs. It'll be interesting to see if he'll be able to develop that area in the upcoming years. If so, he potentially has the makings of an all time great GC contender!
 

Phil

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#6
Fun video, thanks Sergei...

I wonder how his TT-ing is? I know he can get up the medium climbs fairly well but the big stuff? Can he be a Gilbert type with (way) better flat sprint? Or maybe a spring classics guy? Milan-San Remo seems like a dead cert at some point...

However he develops, he's an interesting rider to watch.
 

Phil

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#8
That's pretty impressive. But a short prologue, right? Sprinters can often get goodish results in those compared to full distance TTs...

(Pete--SPOILER if you haven't seen Stage 7 yet)

*******

Looks like he finished 52nd, 2:37 minutes back. So not good, although (a) it was fairly climby for a TT and (b) was he motivated at all?
 

Yamabushi

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#9
Stage 7

Thanks for the spoiler warning, Phil! You saved me, until I had a chance to watch it! :D

So I just finished watching the Stage 7 Time Trial, great performance by Kessiakoff to edge out Cancellara for the stage win! As for Peter Sagan, I think it's safe to say that TT's are not his forté, especially longer ones. But as you noted, in this case what was his motivation level? Likely not high, I'd venture.
 

kpykc

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#11
Sagan's weakness is not only big mountains, as he said himself in Tour of California before the decisive TT stage, he also sucks in long TT's and he knows it.
I was hoping he would keep the yellow in that stage and win ToC overall by some miracle, but it was pretty bad and miracle didn't happen.

..so not quite a GC contender yet.
 

Yamabushi

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#12
Sagan's weakness is not only big mountains, as he said himself in Tour of California before the decisive TT stage, he also sucks in long TT's and he knows it.
I was hoping he would keep the yellow in that stage and win ToC overall by some miracle, but it was pretty bad and miracle didn't happen.

..so not quite a GC contender yet.
Yep, definitely not a GC contender at this point. I think he'll keep doing what he is doing now for at least another 2-4 years. I guess the question is, if he were to set his mind to it, could he mold himself into a strong GC contender down the road. I mean a similar transformation to what Sean Kelly did, morphing from a sprinter into a strong all-arounder. I think he could.
 

Phil

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#13
Sean Kelly, that's an interesting comparison. Definitely looks more like a one-day classics/sprinter type than a stage racer; that TT-ing probably rules him out of most 1 week races as well. Thor, Freire, Gilbert? But with fast sprint than all of those, probably...