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Jeebus the green bullet takes #4 and not a peep. Amstel was great as well, very emotional victory.
 

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Unfortunately it isn't on TV here until Saturday. :( (Wonderful tape delayed coverage several days after the fact). I have seen highlights and am extremely happy Bala won his 3rd in a row and 4th overall title at this race. I love seeing him get his name in the record books by himself for this one. Also hadn't checked this forum out for a couple of days.
 

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I looked for the result on cyclingnews.com yesterday and had to scroll all the way to the bottom of the page to dig up the race report. No headlines or fluff pieces. Strange.

Congrats to the Green Bullet
 

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Watched it live on the NBC Sports app... and you can still watch the replay now, if you don't want to wait. It was definitely a pretty exciting finish. Interesting to see that that EQS once again had the numbers but could't make it work. The problem was they had no clear leader, both Martin and Alaphillipe wanted the win and were sort of waiting for Valverde. Valverde definitely controlled the situation. I think Martin should have gone early... to make Valverde work really hard to chase him down.. then Alalphillipe could sit on Valverde's wheel and hopefully outspent him in the end.
 

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Valverde looked so relaxed with that win, he knew exactly how and when to go on the Mur. I think he, Martin, and Alaphillipe will be the main guys at Liege as well.
 

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Valverde looked so relaxed with that win, he knew exactly how and when to go on the Mur. I think he, Martin, and Alaphillipe will be the main guys at Liege as well.
Agree 100%. I think that if Martin wants the win, he has to go early at Liege... attack on the climb, like he did 2 years ago, when he crashed in that last corner. If he hadn't crashed, I think he would have won that year. If a few of them get past that climb together, I think Alaphillipe has the speed to beat Valverde. I think he would have beat Valverde last year if the line was little further. Its my recollection that he was gaining ground, just didn't have enough room.
 

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I agree with the things all of you have said for the most part. Personally, I have been disappointed by Gerrans', Kwiat's, and Matthews' performances thus far, but I always enjoy watching Valverde do his thing in these races. Only an in his prime Gilbert has been able to consistently match him in recent years. These are definitely great races for Martin and I think he finally understands that and is on a team that won't try to get him to focus more on grand tours instead. I expect a strong finish from him at Liege as well. Alaphilippe and Vakoc are stars in the making IMO and I love watching them just go after it in every race that they are in. I am a little sad that we are at this point in the season already, but I am hoping for a great Liege.
 

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I agree with the things all of you have said for the most part. Personally, I have been disappointed by Gerrans', Kwiat's, and Matthews' performances thus far, but I always enjoy watching Valverde do his thing in these races. Only an in his prime Gilbert has been able to consistently match him in recent years. These are definitely great races for Martin and I think he finally understands that and is on a team that won't try to get him to focus more on grand tours instead. I expect a strong finish from him at Liege as well. Alaphilippe and Vakoc are stars in the making IMO and I love watching them just go after it in every race that they are in. I am a little sad that we are at this point in the season already, but I am hoping for a great Liege.
I don't know if you can be disappointed with Gerro. He head a great start to the season in Australia and I think he could be in good shape for Liege if he gets to the end with a larger group. He's very fast. I think Matthews has had a pretty decent start too with those early wins at Paris-Nice. I am surprised by Kwiato's lack of results this season... he was dead at Amstel. I forgot about Vakoc... he has some speed and has proven he can get up and over the short punchy stuff.

Oh, and I was also impressed by Woods' performance in his first attempt:

Fleche on Strava: Mike Woods crushes the Mur - VeloNews.com
This could be the surprise of the day.. He's fast and can climb. He was just out of position on the narrow Mur de Huy climb.. Liege doesn't have that narrowness. I also feel like Liege isn't quite as climbing focused... that last climb isn't quite as hard as Flèche Wallone
 

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I don't know if you can be disappointed with Gerro. He head a great start to the season in Australia and I think he could be in good shape for Liege if he gets to the end with a larger group. He's very fast. I think Matthews has had a pretty decent start too with those early wins at Paris-Nice. I am surprised by Kwiato's lack of results this season... he was dead at Amstel. I forgot about Vakoc... he has some speed and has proven he can get up and over the short punchy stuff.



This could be the surprise of the day.. He's fast and can climb. He was just out of position on the narrow Mur de Huy climb.. Liege doesn't have that narrowness. I also feel like Liege isn't quite as climbing focused... that last climb isn't quite as hard as Flèche Wallone
I apologize for not being clearer; I am only really disappointed with their performances in the Ardennes.
 

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What about Gasparotto? 2nd at Brabantse, 1st at Amstel, and now fifth at Wallone. Either he really wants to show something for his team and tribute to his fallen team-mate, or he's got some serious form right now. And some of the big clubs must be kicking themselves for not signing him up.
 

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Was watching a clip of 2011 LBL on youtube today--always enjoy that race. This year's edition should be even more interesting with the new cobbled climb. Would love to see Nibali capture the second climber's monument, but head says Dan martin takes it.
 

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Watched it live on the NBC Sports app... and you can still watch the replay now, if you don't want to wait. It was definitely a pretty exciting finish. Interesting to see that that EQS once again had the numbers but could't make it work. The problem was they had no clear leader, both Martin and Alaphillipe wanted the win and were sort of waiting for Valverde. Valverde definitely controlled the situation. I think Martin should have gone early... to make Valverde work really hard to chase him down.. then Alalphillipe could sit on Valverde's wheel and hopefully outspent him in the end.
I was sent a link (from a friend) to watch the replay from Eurosport, so I have gotten to see it now. I'm still going to watch the replay on TV tomorrow. I'm not sure if Martin going sooner would have made a difference or not. Valverde looked to be in complete control.
 

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I was sent a link (from a friend) to watch the replay from Eurosport, so I have gotten to see it now. I'm still going to watch the replay on TV tomorrow. I'm not sure if Martin going sooner would have made a difference or not. Valverde looked to be in complete control.
Valverde clearly loves that finish and knows just where to turn it up a notch or two. I enjoy watching him at work there. It's so interesting to me, however, that he does so well at Flèche Wallonne, but always seems to get outmanuvered at the end of Strade Bianche. I guess the finishes are slightly different but you would think that if you have mastered one, you would be good at the other if you are in the right position near the end.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Valverde clearly loves that finish and knows just where to turn it up a notch or two. I enjoy watching him at work there. It's so interesting to me, however, that he does so well at Flèche Wallonne, but always seems to get outmanuvered at the end of Strade Bianche. I guess the finishes are slightly different but you would think that if you have mastered one, you would be good at the other if you are in the right position near the end.
Strada Bianche seems to be won by power riders. Guys who do well during the 1st 2 weeks of April (Flanders and Roubaix). I'm sure Valverde is quite not 'on form' at that time choosing to peak in the last 2 weeks of Aprii.
 

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Valverde clearly loves that finish and knows just where to turn it up a notch or two. I enjoy watching him at work there. It's so interesting to me, however, that he does so well at Flèche Wallonne, but always seems to get outmanuvered at the end of Strade Bianche. I guess the finishes are slightly different but you would think that if you have mastered one, you would be good at the other if you are in the right position near the end.
This year at Strade Bianche he had a mechanical issue with his bike, switched bikes with a teammate for about 20kms (teammate has a totally different gearing that he uses) then switched bikes again back to his spare bike. So this year I'd give him a pass with those issues. Who knows it might also be just the number of years he's been racing Fleche Wallone vs Strade Bianche as well as to why he has that one so down and mastered.
 

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What about Gasparotto? 2nd at Brabantse, 1st at Amstel, and now fifth at Wallone. Either he really wants to show something for his team and tribute to his fallen team-mate, or he's got some serious form right now. And some of the big clubs must be kicking themselves for not signing him up.
Yeah, kind of quietly slipped in the top 5 there... He's having a great run!
 
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