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The other day I saw him work his way back up from a mechanical in the last 10K, whereupon he got on front and drove his team to a stage win.

I think the team is just out of gas after two stage wins and four days in yellow.

JR
 

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Run1stBike2nd said:
George is not a climber. He never has been, and he never will be. He is a rouleur, and an excellent one at that.
I recall him riding at the front of the first big mountain stages and dropping climbers like Savoldelli, but making it up the whole way up the climb and doing it on the next climb as well (and in the same year as a top 2 or 3 finish in Paris-Roubaix). Also, I remember him being on everyones list of Tour favorites in 2006 after he won the hardest mountain stage of the 2005 Tour.

-ilan
 

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ilan said:
I recall him riding at the front of the first big mountain stages and dropping climbers like Savoldelli, but making it up the whole way up the climb and doing it on the next climb as well (and in the same year as a top 2 or 3 finish in Paris-Roubaix). Also, I remember him being on everyones list of Tour favorites in 2006 after he won the hardest mountain stage of the 2005 Tour.

-ilan
Yes, he was on everyone's list of Tour favorites in '06, but in reality, he didn't belong on that list. They put him on the list because the American media needed someone they could promote with Armstong gone. George was still on Disco, so it was easy to decide to promote him more than Landis or Leipheimer. Prior to the '06 Tour, I had discussions about George's chances with people who have followed cycling for many years, and their response was a unanimous "he can't climb."

As for that stage in 2005, he did no work in that breakaway (nor should he have since his team captain was leading the race), and that breakaway was given a 19 minute cushion by the peloton, but he ultimately finished 5'04" ahead of Armstrong and Basso (i.e. he gave back a lot of time when the road began going up).

Jens looked great today on the Tourmalet, but nobody's ever going to mistake him for a climber. George is no different. I like George. He's a consummate professional, and he's dedicated to the team concept. He does certain things very well, but I think a lot of people overestimate his cycling abilities when they view him as a GT contender.
 

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ilan said:
Also, I remember him being on everyones list of Tour favorites in 2006 after he won the hardest mountain stage of the 2005 Tour.
Discovery was selling this and it was quite remarkable that Vs. and Velosnooze bought it. They were trying to please the "LA is the only cyclist I've ever taken an interest in and now I need someone else to root for" crowd. You could see Phil and Paul fighting to keep a straight face while talking up his chances. Very depressing as a fan. There are plenty of interesting riders who are not American and have no tie to Discovery, Astana, Garmin or Columbia.

As for Hincapie if he wants to keep it up for a couple more years he will continue to be a very useful teammate, but won't win many races.
 

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While George is no high mountain champ, he has good chances at taking a mid mountain breakaway stage win with a big downhill finish. Very few would be able to catch up to him on a downhill run and he can outsprint any of the breakaway climbers if the finish were slightly flattening out. However, his role is mostly support so he wouldn't be allowed to blow himself up like that. Especially now, he needs to save his energy as Cavendish's leadout man.
 

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Run1stBike2nd said:
Yes, he was on everyone's list of Tour favorites in '06, but in reality, he didn't belong on that list. They put him on the list because the American media needed someone they could promote with Armstong gone. George was still on Disco, so it was easy to decide to promote him more than Landis or Leipheimer. Prior to the '06 Tour, I had discussions about George's chances with people who have followed cycling for many years, and their response was a unanimous "he can't climb."
Sorry to have to inform you about the rest of the world, but Hincapie was also listed as a favorite in French cycling magazines which, believe me, do not love Americans especially after 7 years of Armstrong domination (which they attribute to his "proved" doping).For example, in L'Equipe, which "busted" Armstrong he is listed as a favorite during the 06 Tour: http://www.lequipe.fr/Cyclisme/TDF_06_00.html

-ilan
 

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carbon13 said:
George could come last and still be a legend.
Personally, I think he's a legend to American cycling without ever stepping over another top tube...

When he chased back to the pack after his mechanical a few days back (when cavendish won his 2nd stage)... Did anyone notice that the team cars, all seemed to be willing to give him drafting space, and when he reached the back of the peloton, he rode to the right, guys moved to the left to give him room to get up front cause A) he was on the Yellow Jersey team and B) Cause Columbia was setting up for the sprint.. and C) he's GEORGE HINCAPIE. He not only drove his team at the front, but it seemed like he drove the entire peloton into town... He's an AMAZING rider (GC contender or not).
 

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Sprocket - Matt said:
Personally, I think he's a legend to American cycling without ever stepping over another top tube...

When he chased back to the pack after his mechanical a few days back (when cavendish won his 2nd stage)... Did anyone notice that the team cars, all seemed to be willing to give him drafting space, and when he reached the back of the peloton, he rode to the right, guys moved to the left to give him room to get up front cause A) he was on the Yellow Jersey team and B) Cause Columbia was setting up for the sprint.. and C) he's GEORGE HINCAPIE. He not only drove his team at the front, but it seemed like he drove the entire peloton into town... He's an AMAZING rider (GC contender or not).
It's fairly standard that the team cars will assist riders who had mechanicals. Not to knock George, but they'll do that for anyone.
 

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mohair_chair said:
It's fairly standard that the team cars will assist riders who had mechanicals. Not to knock George, but they'll do that for anyone.
True but I also think the peloton respects him as well.
 
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