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Cheshire Cycling Tour Discussion
The race coverage will be brought to you by Ulrich Ulriksen!


Welcome to the 5th edition of the Cheshire Cycling Tour. In accordance with the MGUCI's calendar reduction, it's a little bit less of a tour this year. Previously held as a 5 stage affair, Cheshire has been revamped as a one day classic for the PTHC circuit. The stakes will be very high!

The route itself is the same route ridden as stage 1 in past years. Past results should therefore offer some guidance about potential race scenarios, although any takeaways should remember the caveat that classics and stage race stages may be raced very differently despite similar routes.

Regardless of the circumstances, the race route is particularly brutal. Tough cobbles throughout, with both cobbled and paved hills to contend with as well. The finish itself is uphill, meaning that punch may matter more from a small group than sprint. It stands to reason that more complete classics riders should excel, but flat beast cobblers have had success in past years as well.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/akm.png Wisniowski8069717576837376
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/ubs.png Spengler7458667473836170
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/grm.png Pedersen7763697880827877
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hsk.png Gerts7766787680827270
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Senechal7561677974826974
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Kamyshev7757658175826660
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/gzl.png Teunissen7661677773816769
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Blythe7553657469817571
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/mol.png Theuns7267747673807776

We see throughout the year that PTHC cobbles races are by far the strongest startlists on the terrain, since the lack of available race days or clashes generally puts the best from all divisions in the same field. This race is no different. Every cobbler whose team has chosen this PTHC band is here. This means only a couple of top cobblers are excluded. Most notable among those is Przemyslaw Kasperkiewicz. The Pole won the 2020 and 2021 editions with force, but his King Power team is absent from the startlist this time around. With Danny Summerhill and Jerome Baugnies absent too, we will have a new winner this year.

Is pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/akm.png Wisniowski the favorite? Well, yeah. He's clearly the most complete rider of the top cobbles specialists. Solid uphill, solid sprint, amazing engine. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/akm.png Anderberg is a great right hand man too. Wisniowski finished 3rd here last year, and he'll be hoping to climb up the podium this time.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/grm.png Mads Pedersen has had a few off races this year, but by and large he's been phenomenal. He's got a monument under his belt now after Ronde, and is coming off a powerful win in the Netherlands where he defeated his former master in battle. And knowing Grieg, he's never gonna have a problem with support throughout the race.

One guy who will wanna capitalize on the hills is pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hsk.png Gerts. That's always his M.O., though he doesn't need uphills for a top result at this point. He only managed 7th last year, losing to weaker riders of his archetype, like Sinkeldam, so he'll be hoping for better form this time.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Kamyshev and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Senechal have frustrated their manager more often than not throughout their partnership, but this stage last year was a fairly successful venture. Kamyshev overcame his climbing struggles to get a phenomenal 2nd place, and Senechal slotted into the top 10 as well. They'll be hoping to repeat that kind of performance this time around, and with multiple cards to play, they have strategic options to get there. They also have trademark support from Tinkoff, including pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Sulimov, an outsider in his own right.

Somebody still looking to make his mark is pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/ubs.png Spengler. He's great on the cobbles, but his intangibles have kept him a step below the top favorites for most of his career. Hard to say if this race will be a breakout moment for him, but he has enough top end support to make it possible.

If versatility will make the winner here, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/mol.png Ed Theuns has a shot. He didn't race here last year, so we don't have much to go on. But though he's a step behind in pure cobbles skill, his punch and sprint usually make him a top contender. It will be interest to see how much sprint helps here though. In previous years, this stage has usually been a war of attrition, with riders coming hope in ones and two's. With that and the uphill finish, Theuns may not have the chance to show his whole skillset.

After finishing 8th last year, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/gzl.png Teunissen is in that same range of the favorites list again, but he has the chance to improve the final result. He doesn't stand out, but consistency is just as desirable. He's a better climber than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.png Blythe, who really disappointed last year 19th and has since declined. The Brit has one more chance to prove that was a fluke.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Vanbilsen7850698074807271
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/cdb.png Trentin7359737469807474
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png Daniel7356697676807672
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/aeg.png Van Hooydonck7363717574806172
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Sulimov7364707771796571
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tti.png Zubov6863637069796169
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/akm.png Anderberg7864697776786073
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/evo.png Polanc7274737873786775
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/spr.png David7462757674787073
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/dsc.png Tiller7465707675787473
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/pfi.png Benoot7175807574766971

The favorites list always gets more even as you go down, and that's the case here. The bottom isn't a strict cutoff, but you have to draw the line somewhere.

It will be interesting to see the PCT trio of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.png Vanbilsen, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/cdb.png Trentin, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/hla.png Daniel in action. They're all riders of a similar strength with slightly different skillsets, and they've all been quite consistent in PCT cobbles races this year. Now, the competition is much tougher. Only Trentin raced here last year, and he flopped miserably, finishing 23rd and ceding team leadership to Ramon Sinkeldam in the process. Both he and his PCT counterparts will hope for results closer to the Italian's 4th place from 2020.

Among other leaders, we have pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/aeg.png Van Hooydonck from Aegon. He's a classic cobbles specialist still trying to come into his own at the top level. He'll hope his lack of finishing speed won't matter here.

Guys like pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/evo.png Polanc and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/spr.png David, on the other hand, are much more complete riders who wants to avoid a race of attrition sorted out on the stones. The climbing suits them, and a final small group sprint wouldn't hurt either, especially for David.

And of course, when we're talking about hybrids, we can't forget to mention pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/pfi.png Benoot. It would be very impressive if he managed to outlast all those stronger than him in terms of cobbles, but it's not impossible. There are a couple of fairly long, steep, paved hills in the second half of the race. If Benoot can put on the pressure there, he has a shot at an unlikely victory.

Thanks for a great preview! Not exactly the greatest profile for Daniel so would be very happy with a top 10 here to keep up our momentum!
Thanks for the preview, bbl!

Should be a good race. If the hills turn out to be a handful, some of our other riders should also be able to step up a bit. But Pedersen is of course the main man for us. Hopefully he can continue his good season with another fine race.
It was a difficult decision during season planning to not come back here after Kasperkiewicz' back to back wins in the last two years when it still was a stage race. Looking at the startlist a repeat would've been very difficult anyways. Looking forward to see who will be his successor.
Should be one of the better races for Polanc. Hope he can deliver!
A Big Thank You To All MG Reporters!

One day Vermeersch as leader will be worth more than last place on the startlist. For now though, yeah Pfft
24/02/21 - kandesbunzler said “I don't drink famous people."
22/07/21 - quadsas said "I admire you [jandal] so much as a manager, squad builder and a person"
15/08/22 - SotD said "Your [jandal's] humour is overrated"

[ICL] Santos-Euskadi | The Life And Times | [PCT] i.imgur.com/c85NSl6.png Xero Racing

4x i.imgur.com/wM6Wok5.png x4
Fingers crossed!

As tastasol points out, curious to see how the hills plays out here, eventhough the race is rated flat. Maybe they are the kind of help Wisniowski needs, eventhough it should favour riders like Gerts and Theuns.

Thank you for the preview, bbl!
Hoping for points. Expecting nothing.
Hoping this race suits Benoot better than the favourites' list says it will. He needs to get back to the early season form for our betterment.

Thanks for the preview bbl Smile
Ouch. I really didn't think Trentin could do much worse than last year to be honest, especially without Sinkeldam taking leadership, but he was up to the task. 27th is abysmal considering his 73 hill. I know mountain is playing a significant role in these cobbled classics as well post PCM-18, and I think that explains some of the performances, good and bad. But I definitely didn't expect to be outside the top 25 here. Falling to the back of that chase group stings. Guys like Vanbilsen and Daniel were barely stronger but gain a lot of points in comparison. Oh well. After 3 punctures to important riders at the start of the race, I should have realized this was not going to turn out well.

On the bright side, Girmay was super strong all day. Breakaways never work in races as tough as this, but it was really fun to see him light it up anyway and finish in the top 30.

Thanks for the report and congrats to jaxika. Theuns is an awesome rider. Very jealous
RIP Exxon Duke, David Veilleux, Double Feature, and Monster Energy
Awesome result bye Theuns again. And seemingly in own count again, without much help. Thanks for the report!
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Not a great race for us, which became apparent when Thwaites and GVK started attacking for some reason with way too much to go. 18th could be a lot worse at least we do pick up some points but if we were to do a miraculous promotion push these are the races where Daniel would have to step it up a notch! Thanks for the report!
Great result for Benoot to come back from last month's double disappointment. Just the kind of start we needed to this month. Shiki getting some minor points is always useful.

Congrats to jaxika and thanks for the report Ulrich Smile
Nice report, really catching the tension for the win in the final kilometers.

And I really, really thought this was it, with Wisniowski finally winning well inside the final kilometer, but Theuns played it perfectly. Congratulations on the win, jaxika!
Thought we did a good race to be fair. Ringheim up front and the rest nicely together around Pedersen. In hindsight he probably shouldn't have attacked, but we've been rewarded heavily earlier in the year for attacking, so we certainly want to see him continuing racing aggresively also in the future.

Feel sorry for Wisniowski, but congrats on the win, jaxika Smile Nice race by Theuns.
The trio together, except we didn't get to see them all race. Six points are six points though.

Thanks for the report UU and congrats jaxika!
Really thought Gerts had that one.

A bit embarrassing to finish behind Benoot too Pfft
Overall Teunissen, Malecki and Potts did a decent job of scoring us points here.

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