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Cheshire Cycling Tour Discussion
Aquarius97
Preview and Reports by Tsmoha


Cheshire Cycling Tour
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We're heading for Great Britain: Cheshire is a county in North West England, bordering Merseyside and Greater Manchester to the north, Derbyshire to the east, Staffordshire and Shropshire to the south and Flintshire, Wales and Wrexham county borough to the west. Cheshire's county town is Chester, where the final stage of this new 5-days-event will be finish.

The Cheshire Cycling Tour arose from one of the toughest cycling sportives in Great Britain (The Cheshire Cobbled Classic), that was inspired by the Tour of Flanders. The first stage features a circuit around Macclesfield, with a total of 21 cobbled sectors (25.5km) to be managed. Much of the course is located within the Peak District National Park, passing the beautiful Lyme Park (National Trust). The route contains over 30.5km of climbing, and the stage builds to a climax with a rapid succession of cobbled climbs, including the iconic Swiss Hill, a 25% cobbled climb near Alderley Edge. Though rated flat, this opening stage does favor those riders, who handle short and steep climbs.

Three flat stages through different places in Eastern and Western Cheshire then: Knutsford, Northwich, Runcorn as the next three destinations, where sprinters should be expected to fight for stage wins and the points classification. The event concludes with a second, less hilly cobbled stage from Runcorn to Chester: with 22km of cobbles covered, it's yet another chance for the main GC contenders to go for the first overall victory of the Cheshire Cycling Tour!

The Startlist
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Races/HC/cheshire/MG18_cheshire_startlist.jpg


The GC contenders
FavoritesFLHICOSPOutsidersFLHICOSP
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_cdb.png Vanspeybrouck76718267pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_wcc.png Bolivar73667764
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_itd.png Blythe76668276pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_itd.png Kosic72667759
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_min.png Zepuntke72698172pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_red.png Gaday69747671
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_kul.png Baugnies78728065pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_nvo.png Kasperkiewicz72717659
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_lpu.png Vanbilsen78698072pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_phc.png Saber75687681
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_t3a.png Burghardt75688065pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_lpu.png Joseph74667666
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_cdb.png Nolf74668063pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_yor.png Thwaites73657678
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_yor.png Fenn72617970pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_ssc.png Nepomnyachsniy74647678
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_t3a.png Thomas75607974pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_min.png Lindeman73647674
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_ssc.png David74757870pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_0r8.png Debesay74737569
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_gnr.png Theuns72747877pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_del.png Van der Haar77727572
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_nbw.png Van Keirsbulck72717870pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_kul.png Langeveld75717562
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_min.png Albert75697863pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_mji.png Kuroeda72707576
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_wcc.png Bush74627871pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_0r8.png Rowe78667579
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_cdb.png Sinkeldam74757768pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_lpu.png Van Asbroeck75717480
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_del.png Breen77707773pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_wcc.png Harrison72677378


A packed startlist, as to be expected for such an interesting HC race. Given the difficulty of particularly the opening stage, we surely need to take a look at the strongest cobblers first:

Vanspeybrouck has a season with mixed feelings so far, but as the winner of the De Panne Tour, he obviously enjoyed the last cobbled stage (even though he had a bad day there, too). The hilly touch of the opening stage simply must suit him though and just like Baugnies, David, Theuns or Van Keirsbulck, he needs to put himself into a great GC position already on this first day. Baugnies obviously another serious contender for the overall win and while David, Theuns and particularly Van Keirsbulck may lack the big wins so far, they certainly will love those climbs on the first day here in Cheshire. Also Breen coming with a nice skillset for such a profile (and thanks to his solid sprint abilities, he certainly can be a dark horse for the GC podium anyway).

Local heroes like Blythe, Fenn, Thomas and Bush should arrive with a few percents extra motivation. Blythe as another obvious top favorite anyway, even though he may struggle on some climbs here. Just like Thomas, Fenn and Bush, who will certainly prefer the look of the second cobbled stage!

Zepuntke, Vanbilsen, Burghardt, Nolf or Albert as the remaining premium cobblers. Some more interesting names though: Gaday, Debesay, Van der Haar or Kuroeda as other "punchy cobblers" - particularly Debesay and Van der Haar already went for notable result this season and maybe here's a chance to add another..

Saber, Thwaites, Nepomnyachsniy, L Rowe, Van Asbroeck, Harrison - as well as Theuns - top the list of the best sprinters amongst the cobblers. Van Asbroeck also as one of the better puncheurs, so he will definitely aim for something special here. While someone like Saber may try to limit the damage on the opening day, just to fight for bonifications and stage wins on the remaining four days, Van Asbroeck should fancy his chances on day one (even though the amount of cobbles may hurt eventually)!

The Sprinters
FavoritesFLHICOSPOutsidersFLHICOSP
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_nvo.png Vantomme73647082pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_phc.png Krieger71626379
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_phc.png Saber75687681pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_kul.png Bennett71636179
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_lpu.png Van Asbroeck75717480pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_ssc.png Suryadi71625879
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_yor.png Rowe72626780pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_mji.png Hayakawa73655779
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_npn.png Holloway78696580pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_yor.png Thwaites73657678
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_kul.png Lavoine73606580pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_ssc.png Nepomnyachsniy74647678
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_mji.png Itami75616480pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_wcc.png Harrison72677378
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_min.png Drapac71536480pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_del.png Korzh74596278
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_p4e.png Ulanowski73586280pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_nvo.png Sobota72606178
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_cdb.png Kragh Andersen77645380pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_yor.png Corti72635978
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_0r8.png Rowe78667579pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_gnr.png Theuns72747877
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_lpu.png Peeters72626879pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_cdb.png Kvist75657177
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_phc.png Te Brake75646679pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2018/Micro/mg18_gnr.png Planckaert73657177


And by looking at the list of sprinters, it's pretty obvious, that Saber, Van Asbroeck and L Rowe should have realistic chances to also fight for those three non-cobbled flat stages!

Vantomme as the favorite for sprints though and while his cobbles skills may not be good enough to hang on in the key stages, he certainly knows how to ride the pavé and shouldn't be totally dead when it comes to the non-cobbled days here..

M Rowe, Holloway, Lavoine, Itami, Drapac, Ulanowski and Kragh Andersen as other top sprinters trying to go for line honours and of course the points classification.
Edited by jandal7 on 11-01-2019 22:23
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Vien
If stage one wasn't flat I would've had some hopes here, but Ive kinda calculated this as a waste of race days already.
 
Ollfardh
We need something big here, stage win and good gc to save us.
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AbhishekLFC
How much damage control can Saber do on the cobbles? That will probably decide our team's fate in this race. Time for some Per magic again PCM?
 
whitejersey
GVK is somehow not captain here, just praying for a stage win or something, points need to come soon if we wanna stay up.
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baseballlover312
Nope, nope, nope. Not even acknowledging this one. been burned too many times already. Sorry.
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Croatia14
Saber ahead of Rowe please Smile
 
valverde321
Hope one of the Kuroedas can do something here, and Itami can get results on the flat, non cobble stages.
 
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jandal7
The cobbled hills of day one really scare me with Rowe but I hope he can come in the first main group if it isn't too chaotic and gain back time on the stages to come. A nice GC from Debesay, particularly if he does well on those hills, would be nice too, but this should be Rowe's time to shine.
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Marcovdw
Seven cobblers and the sprinter. Drapac doesn't have the best of seasons yet but I'm confident the cobble squad can bring together some decent points here.
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Vien
Alright, gonna pull a trek and request someone to check out this stage before we continue with the reports.

I lost all my cobblers, including Gaday, and I'm 100% sure it happened because the AI assigned 76SP Canelon as the leader (see startlist). All other results and DNFs can be explained by this too.

Not begging for a remake but this race needs to be fixed for next season at least...
 
jandal7
@Vien tsmoha reported this and isn't here so I doubt it will be checked in time. But a valid query for off season checking - perhaps chuck it in the main stage complaints thread.

Jackpot here for Saber, amazing ride to put himself in a really good GC position - Per again a hero in the support role and should do amazingly for himself on GC too. For us it was dissapointingly mediocre, hope a top 10 is still on the cards, top 10 and 15 (very optimistic) with a stage win (very very optimistic) and podium and top 5 would be a solid race for sure SmilePfft
30/12/14 - matt17br said "Sutty's birthday is more important than [Jesus' Birthday]"
23/11/18 - Kaustubh Bhalerao said "@Trek Bmc r u being srs or u are just natruallly dumb"


[ICL] Santos-Euskadi | The Life And Times | [PCT] i.imgur.com/c85NSl6.png Xero Racing p/b Octagon
[CX] Listerijns & BoK
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Ollfardh
Vien wrote:
Alright, gonna pull a trek and request someone to check out this stage before we continue with the reports.

I lost all my cobblers, including Gaday, and I'm 100% sure it happened because the AI assigned 76SP Canelon as the leader (see startlist). All other results and DNFs can be explained by this too.

Not begging for a remake but this race needs to be fixed for next season at least...


It was a weird stage indeed, but it's better than what Dunkerque stage 1 gave us in the past. My sprinter was definitely working for my cobbler, so I'm not sure if that is the problem.

Obviously I can't complain about the aggresive riding and the result, just a bit disappointed we used Van Asbroeck as a domestique. His GC is gone now and I do hope he has something left in the tank for the upcoming sprint stages.
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Marcovdw
Zepuntke has no acceleration, so this was to be expected honestly. Surprisied most of the team was still with him in the big group, though I would've fancied on of them attacking. Drapac survived at least (shockingly compared to Nolf/Gaday etc.)
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Croatia14
Vien wrote:
Alright, gonna pull a trek and request someone to check out this stage before we continue with the reports.

I lost all my cobblers, including Gaday, and I'm 100% sure it happened because the AI assigned 76SP Canelon as the leader (see startlist). All other results and DNFs can be explained by this too.

Not begging for a remake but this race needs to be fixed for next season at least...


Well that was a risk to take analysing how last years cobbled stage races went...sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you don't - in my eyes this is the charme of planning your season, and results like this where "favourites" fade big time and lower level riders rise make up for the most interesting results in my opinion

also: David Per striking again with his brilliant rides!!
 
baseballlover312
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Vien wrote:
Alright, gonna pull a trek and request someone to check out this stage before we continue with the reports.

I lost all my cobblers, including Gaday, and I'm 100% sure it happened because the AI assigned 76SP Canelon as the leader (see startlist). All other results and DNFs can be explained by this too.

Not begging for a remake but this race needs to be fixed for next season at least...


I had two cobblers 77+ stay back with my sprinter. to the point that my cobbler at 80+, in a race where he couldn't have crashed, abandoned. I second this motion. Not just for my sake; my team's a lost cause. but for sanity's sake.
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Croatia14 wrote:
Vien wrote:
Alright, gonna pull a trek and request someone to check out this stage before we continue with the reports.

I lost all my cobblers, including Gaday, and I'm 100% sure it happened because the AI assigned 76SP Canelon as the leader (see startlist). All other results and DNFs can be explained by this too.

Not begging for a remake but this race needs to be fixed for next season at least...


Well that was a risk to take analysing how last years cobbled stage races went...sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you don't - in my eyes this is the charme of planning your season, and results like this where "favourites" fade big time and lower level riders rise make up for the most interesting results in my opinion

also: David Per striking again with his brilliant rides!!


I mean, it's easy to say that when it hasn't happened to you 15 times this year in your most important terrain.

I've gotten quite used to seeing my leaders fail for no reason. But here it's quite obvious why they failed, and it makes so little sense that you could put some circus music behind it an make a comedy video out of it. Perhaps if you were in a similar position, you'd understand.

As I've said, my team is a lost cause, so I don't care about the result. But I do care about game breaking bugs being in our races.
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whitejersey
Abysmal performance today, hopefully this means GVK can go for some breakaway wins instead.
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valverde321
I dont understand how none of my cobblers made any effort at all. Disappointing.
 
Croatia14
baseballlover312 wrote:
I mean, it's easy to say that when it hasn't happened to you 15 times this year in your most important terrain.


You haven't seen my team performing hilly classics it seems Pfft the exact opposite of what Juul-Jensen did last year...

I've gotten quite used to seeing my leaders fail for no reason. But here it's quite obvious why they failed, and it makes so little sense that you could put some circus music behind it an make a comedy video out of it. Perhaps if you were in a similar position, you'd understand.


Well, as said, we had that type of races last year as well. Bringing a strong no-cobbles sprinters to a cobbled stage race has turned up to be as wise as bringing Theo Bos to a Giro and wanting him to reach the goal. It can turn out to be a great idea, but that doesn't really happen very often. It's a risk-reward choice where you this time failed to cash in, but maybe you will lateron in this race.

As I've said, my team is a lost cause, so I don't care about the result. But I do care about game breaking bugs being in our races.


Hey, I'm the first to say let's go to PCM18 Pfft
 
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