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Pro Tour standings, multiple riders in top ten finishes, multiple race threats, good leadership. No shadow of a singular focus or rider. An all round great team. Don't count them out of the major tours as they are the supreme stage race team.

In a couple of years a Disco jersey may even become fashionable.
 

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Tell me again...

dagger said:
Pro Tour standings, multiple riders in top ten finishes, multiple race threats, good leadership. No shadow of a singular focus or rider. An all round great team. Don't count them out of the major tours as they are the supreme stage race team.

In a couple of years a Disco jersey may even become fashionable.
Tell me again what race they've won that has been big so far this year? That would be nothing. Hoste has come close in a couple of bigger races, and won a stage of de Panne, but other than that, nothing but quiet from their camp. I'd wait until after this weekend to proclaim it's good to be a Disco homer and see what comes out of Flanders, GW, and PR over the next week or so.

Top ten finishes mean little. Only wins. Good showings, are just that, good, but the sponsors really remember the winners. They never really had a singular focus on one rider except for the Tour, everyone else pretty much had their chances in the other 100+ races that happen from February through October, except for the Tour. They have had an all around great team for years, this is nothing new. I definitely wouldn't count them out of any major tours as they have a proven winner already in PS, good potential in Popovych (podium of Giro), and if Danielson ever comes around, he could be handy in a stage race as well.

I think your proclamation of being great so far this year though is kind of hollow. The MSR, they were nowhere in sight, not a factor. That's where they should have showed out. Like I said, let's wait until after this next week, and we'll see how strong they are. I think they have a good chance but they'll have to butt heads with the classics juggernaut of Quick Step, and then we'll see what shakes loose.
 

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Hoste won DePanne - 3 years in a row for Disco/USPS

I agree that we have to wait and see whether Disco can win the big races, but Hoste, Devolder, George and Hammond have ridden pretty well this year. It appeared to me that George finally figured out how to win last year. the TdF stage was a real breakthrough. He was close at Roubaix last year as well. I don't "expect" a victory, but I wouldn't be surprised to see one. I do expect pretty good performances, though. It will be very difficult to beat Boonen. I he has a chance to win with 20k to go, you can almost count on it. he can obviously sprint, and he just seems to want it more than anyone else. We will see.
 

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Well, Disco went 1-3 in the TT today, so make that two stages and the overall at de Panne. A nice win, but not a big win. As you said they have shown themselves fairly well so far this spring with some top 5 placings in stage races, but no big wins (Sorry, stage at TofCali isn't big...yet).


I could be really wrong on this, but I wonder if Disco is having trouble shifting their focus this year in the new Non-Lance-centric world? The classics are always important, but a win at the Tour always trumped missing the brass ring at other times of the year. On paper, Disco has the makings of a strong classics team. A number of the guys have stood on the podium during the Belgian classics, but can they put it together to give a Quik-Step like showing of force? Does the team know how to get really revved up and focused for one day races like this?
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Well

Hoste has won 2(oops that is 2 stages..I counted his 2nd place TT last week as a win) and several 2 and 3 places, and The over all at De Panne. So your wrong about him. Disco said the MSR was not on their list of priorities so your wrong on that. You're correct on the QS juggarnaut for one day races. Fortunately Boonen is not a stage race winner. Disco leads the Pro Tour standings so that says something about their performance for the year. Take the blinders off and leave the dark side behind you.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Unfortunately for the rest

t-bill said:
I agree that we have to wait and see whether Disco can win the big races, but Hoste, Devolder, George and Hammond have ridden pretty well this year. It appeared to me that George finally figured out how to win last year. the TdF stage was a real breakthrough. He was close at Roubaix last year as well. I don't "expect" a victory, but I wouldn't be surprised to see one. I do expect pretty good performances, though. It will be very difficult to beat Boonen. I he has a chance to win with 20k to go, you can almost count on it. he can obviously sprint, and he just seems to want it more than anyone else. We will see.
Boonen can also be succesful with a break away. So he is THE juggarnaut.
 

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I think Disco will never be a Classics focused team. Most people in the US don't even know those races exist. In order to market themselves in the US they still need to do well in the TdF. Even the other GT's don't matter much from a marketing POV.
 

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De Panne Koksijde is nothing, almost all the strong riders look on it as a good training for De Ronde and pull out of it before the final ITT or just roll through it as if it were some chore. The teams competing for it are Belgian Continental Teams and Discovery have this TT fetish so they do their best. With a lack of truely ambitious competition it's easy game for the boys.
 

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t-bill said:
I agree that we have to wait and see whether Disco can win the big races, but Hoste, Devolder, George and Hammond have ridden pretty well this year. It appeared to me that George finally figured out how to win last year. the TdF stage was a real breakthrough. He was close at Roubaix last year as well. I don't "expect" a victory, but I wouldn't be surprised to see one. I do expect pretty good performances, though. It will be very difficult to beat Boonen. I he has a chance to win with 20k to go, you can almost count on it. he can obviously sprint, and he just seems to want it more than anyone else. We will see.

Hincapie figured out how to win a stage in TdF?

Discovery let him go out on a break away, and he ended up too far out to bother to help Lance.
 

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Well...

dagger said:
Hoste has won 2(oops that is 2 stages..I counted his 2nd place TT last week as a win) and several 2 and 3 places, and The over all at De Panne. So your wrong about him. Disco said the MSR was not on their list of priorities so your wrong on that. You're correct on the QS juggarnaut for one day races. Fortunately Boonen is not a stage race winner. Disco leads the Pro Tour standings so that says something about their performance for the year. Take the blinders off and leave the dark side behind you.
Well, if people tell you that they aren't targeting MSR, that's silly. First of all, it's the first monument of the season, and also ranks in there with being one of the more prestigious races on the calender every single year. A win there can make someone's entire career actually. George said it was not a priority for him, so he didn't take place, but I don't remember anyone from the team saying that. If you don't send your best to MSR, you shouldn't even show up for the rest of the Spring Classics. But they did send a good team to MSR, but not their best, which in my opinion, was silly.

De Panne is not a big race. It's more like a prelude to this coming week of racing in the Ardennes and Belgium. It's a good quality win for Hoste, but it still doesn't rank up there with winning any one of the 3 races coming up this week. Flanders. GW. And Paris Roubaix.

I didn't say anything bad about Disco, I merely said that they have had good outings so far this year, but have not won big races. This is true. The ProTour rankings mean that they have finished people consistently in the top 10 or top 30 actually of any race that they've been in. That's it. They still haven't won a big race. You my friend should take the blinders off and realize that I was highly complimentary of their efforts so far this year, and hope to see them throw down this week with Quick Step and battle it out.

So I say to you, take the blinders off and realize that they are not dominating right now. They have a good shot at doing something this weekend, but this season they have yet to win any big races. Also, Boonen cannot be stopped. That man alone has won more races so far this season than Disco as a team. Just so you don't cry in your pudding, remember, I didn't disparage your beloved Disco team, and I respect them as a team, and would love to see them do well this coming week.
 

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I think it is too early to judge. They shouldve done better in MSR. Like Mag said it all depends on this weekend and Roubaix.
I think for American Cycling fans who are on the verdge (myself) looking for a good sport to occupy the time between bball and football it is very important for Americans to do well in these upcoming Classics. I only wish more Americans where involved as far as I know, correct me if I am wrong but Landis, Jullich, DZ, Horner types do not partake in these classics.
I was also gald to see that Jullich is going to race in the US championships.
 

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rogger said:
De Panne Koksijde is nothing, almost all the strong riders look on it as a good training for De Ronde and pull out of it before the final ITT or just roll through it as if it were some chore. The teams competing for it are Belgian Continental Teams and Discovery have this TT fetish so they do their best. With a lack of truely ambitious competition it's easy game for the boys.
Did seem like Disco threw a lot of unnecessary firepower at such a small race and sent nobody to MSR. But then it's easy to be a big fish in a small pond....
 

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t-bill said:
I think Disco will never be a Classics focused team. Most people in the US don't even know those races exist. In order to market themselves in the US they still need to do well in the TdF. Even the other GT's don't matter much from a marketing POV.
Discovery's involvement with a cycling team is because they, like USPS before them, are trying to boost their awareness in Europe. Discovery Channel is carried in some European countries and they are trying to gain viewership.
 

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Vel07 said:
Isnt that the idea of sponsorship
Yeah, my post was a little vague in reference to the quoted post. The point I was trying to make was that they are sponsoring a team to boost their European sponsorship, not their American viewership. Thus races like MSR, RVV, P-R and a host of others are important to Disco.
 

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Oh that makes more sense. The channel is doing very well as it is. I am sure they will be even better with an overseas market.
 
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