Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Time to step up

With Samuel Sánchez out of the game, the team's remaining five riders have a unique opportunity to chase their own goals in the world's biggest race. Should they all just aim for breaks, though, or should they aim for bigger prizes?

Pablo Urtasun: Should definitely aim to get into every possible break. Came oh so close to grabbing a sensational win on stage five, and looks to be in top shape after a questionable lead-up to the race. Climbs better than all the other fast finishers present, and should thrive on the medium mountain days.

Egoi Martínez: As he doesn't possess as fast a finish as Urtasun and Rubén Pérez, should, in my opinion, give it one last go for the climber's jersey. Has come close several times in the past, and, as there's no Contador, Schleck or Samu, and with possible contenders Gesink, Vanendert and Mollema seemingly not at their a-game, should stand a good chance as his climbing looks to be decent so far.

Rubén Pérez: Should do like Urtasun, but perhaps on days less hilly. A Tour win would be long overdue and most deserving, and there'll be plenty of chances in the remaining two weeks.

Gorka Izagirre: Probably the team's best bet for a stage win from a break on hilly and/or flat terrain. At the same time, though, he looks to be capable of posting a top 20 in Paris. In his best form of 2012, Izagirre could well emulate his younger brother by taking a GT stage win, but then again a decent overall placing would also be of value to the team. Judging by team DS Gorka Gerrikagoitia's recent comments, pretty much everyone on the team will now aim for stages, so Izagirre is likely to do the same.

Jorge Azanza: Could be a valuable helper in a break alongside one of his team-mates. Decent climber when in shape, and should aim to join the likes of Martínez, Izagirre and co. when they jump clear.

Photo: www.fundacioneuskadi.com

No comments:


web site counter
ISP Internet Providers