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Paulo is one of the few left in the TDF to actually have and repeated record winning grand tours. He can climb and time trial reasonably well, has a strong team and seems to have a lot of git. So, when the short lists of potential winners is made, he's near the bottom, or not included. He's always been in service to Lance in the TDF, but I think he's really got a good chance to win if he wasn't always the domestique.

brewster
 

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framed said:
in the mountains Savoldelli will emerge as the real team leader.
As long as all that killer pollen that crippled him in the Giro is gone....

Seriously though, I think Savoldelli's performance at the Giro, sick or not, has a lot of people thinking his form isn't quite where it should be plus he was trying to peak for the Giro and that effort may have taken too much out of him. He is sitting in a good position now, so if he's got the legs to climb with the big dogs he'll get his fair amount of buzz.
 

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brewster said:
Paulo is one of the few left in the TDF to actually have and repeated record winning grand tours. He can climb and time trial reasonably well, has a strong team and seems to have a lot of git. So, when the short lists of potential winners is made, he's near the bottom, or not included. He's always been in service to Lance in the TDF, but I think he's really got a good chance to win if he wasn't always the domestique.
He was only the domestique for Lance last year. Before that, he had only finished the Tour two times in his career (3 starts) and had never come remotely close to a top 10 finish. He has shown he can ride well in his home country, but, as Johan said, Italy is not France and he hasn't done it in France before.

If something should happen to Hincapie, Paolo can possibly give Discovery a top 10 finish. He hasn't shown--either in this season or in past seasons--that he's a serious Tour contender yet, though.
 

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this Tour actually suits 'Il Falco'

whereas this Giro did not. The Giro had climbs that don't suit his style (supersteep) so once he knew he couldn't defend he may have just rode within his limits and saved something for the Tour. I think all's quiet for a reason, plus with downhill run-ins at the end of some stages, even if he gets dropped getting back on won't be much of an issue.
watch him, I am.
 

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SenorBlanco said:
As long as all that killer pollen that crippled him in the Giro is gone....

Seriously though, I think Savoldelli's performance at the Giro, sick or not, has a lot of people thinking his form isn't quite where it should be plus he was trying to peak for the Giro and that effort may have taken too much out of him. He is sitting in a good position now, so if he's got the legs to climb with the big dogs he'll get his fair amount of buzz.
I agree. If he dropped out of Giro, re-group and aim for the tour, it's one thing. But to have the entire schedule peaking for Giro and then struggle through it is a different story.
I am not buying alergy story and the conspiracy theory that someone mentioned yesterday that he was taking it easy all along since he knew he had no shot against Basso and that he was aiming for the Tour. No way. You could tell he was peaking by his performance in Romandie and opening time trial in the Giro. And he appeared to genuinly struggle every single day. He really wanted to do well. Allergies or not, that should have taken a lot out of him. I see him going for a stage win, but going for GC will be a tall order.
 
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