The Lanterne Rouge 2023 Thread (definite spoilers)

Shall we dance?
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  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,560
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  • mididoctors
    mididoctors Posts: 17,648
    There should be a ptp pick for this that scores highly
    "If I was a 38 year old man, I definitely wouldn't be riding a bright yellow bike with Hello Kitty disc wheels, put it that way. What we're witnessing here is the world's most high profile mid-life crisis" Afx237vi Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 pm
  • takethehighroad
    takethehighroad Posts: 6,711

    There should be a ptp pick for this that scores highly

    176 points on stage 1
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,560
    Oooh, Jacopo is going for it. Takes the stage today in a small bunch reverse sprint. He's a very strong contender, he's placed 2,10,11 before
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  • mididoctors
    mididoctors Posts: 17,648
    Kids got form
    "If I was a 38 year old man, I definitely wouldn't be riding a bright yellow bike with Hello Kitty disc wheels, put it that way. What we're witnessing here is the world's most high profile mid-life crisis" Afx237vi Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 pm
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Stage one:

    Today's trip around rocky Bilbao was widely tipped to be one for the puncheurs, so it was no surprise to see Gianni Moscon amongst the heavyweights hitting out on today's stage.

    Having broken away before the Coat of Pike - a bit fishy if you ask me - a strong group impressively took six minutes on Richard Carapaz's fractured kneecap (and unless it was really badly broken, presumably the rest of Richard Carapaz).

    Amongst the break was Mark Cavendish. Peter Kennaugh exclusively revealed last week that Cav had been enjoying a low altitude camp at home in preparation for this year's tour. In turn this suggested Mark was leading no stone unturned for the fairytale ending that would see him finally break Eddy Merckx's record of no lanternes rouge. And today's finish hints that the Manx Missile might finally be ready to misfire on the grand stage...

    The top three however were Phil Bauhaus, who presumably came into this with some sort of design; Federov (who we'll ignore on the basis I can't think of anything amusing to say); and - lighting the first lanterne of this year's race - Jacopo Guarnieri. Guarnieri has proper form in the race for the lanterne, and although it's famously a long way to tip a weary rider people will already be taking note.

    Finally a word on French riders, who again disappoint. Just two in the top ten, neither of whom made the winning move. They'll be disappointed with that, Clive.

    Under all:


  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 26,203
    It's a marathon, not a sprint. Those early leaders have gone off too fast, too soon.
    I fully expect the French to make a comeback in the latter stages.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Stage two:

    Funny how time flies when you're having fun, isn't it? Take the tour, for example - it feels like it started only yesterday, yet apparently we're already well into the boring middle week transitional stages.

    After a bit of a farce at the front end of the race - you know it's been a tactical horror show when a Cofidis rider somehow manages to read the runes correctly, possibly by dragging everybody else down to their level and then beating them with their greater experience - it was left to the lanterne to make things interesting, and our lads didn't disappoint.

    First of all there's the sight of Astana sewing up the top four places, confirming that on this year's tour they really are all in for Mark Cavendish. There'll be dark mutterings about the dangers of one team dominating the competition of course, but it's good to see them not falling into the Jumbo Visma trap of bringing along a luxury superstar sprinter and expecting them to play nicely with their big hope for GC. It's also still early in the competition, and with all to play for the cliches and mixed metaphors will continue until they come home to roost. Or until Carlton is gently requested to cede the microphone.

    Then yesterday's leader and novelty dog breed (we called them mongrels when I was a kid) Jacopo Guarnieri was sadly unable to hold onto his lead in the face of the Astana pressure, tumbling upwards after missing a vital crash whilst riding alongside Bauhaus in the middle of our street. Madness.

    However one rider who did find it all going to chute was Jasper de Buyst. Teammate Maxim van Gils performed a textbook leadout by hurling himself under de Buyst's front wheel, and de Buyst immediately took advantage to roll in over a minute behind the straggling group. That marks Lotto Dstny's second stage win of this year's tour, and will surely go some way to restoring their morale after suffering that tragic vowel heist.

    Fedorov inherits the lead on countback; tune in tomorrow to see if the promised sprint stage shakes up the standings.

    Dstny's Chld:



    Say my name, say my name (I think I might be concussed remix):






  • pinno
    pinno Posts: 51,691
    You know life is good when moi is exercising one's right of Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité (marred only by some idiot who goes off the back of the bunch).

    I did wake up in a cold sweat today thinking that something was very missing in his malaise. Was it my socks, my keys, my lack of cognition... Boy those ten 5 second 'ints*' I did on the rollers sure took it out on me.
    Then it struck me and it was this: the LR thread and now my life is complete. To celebrate this epiphany I decided that I would painstakingly translate an ancient French rhyme. The fact that it was actually Belgian is just petite folie.

    [Verse 2]
    Wham! Bam! My cat 1; crash
    Rolling around in the deep Basque
    My team mate swallowed my gel as he drank all my SIS go
    As for me, I've hardly slept, I feel empty yet full of bacalao
    I had to sleep in the pensión
    Where I had a flash of inspiration
    Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
    In one colour: red

    [Chorus]
    It's all a big work out out for me, It's all a big work out out for me,
    It's all a big work out out for me,, me, me, me, me
    It's all a big work out out for me,
    Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
    It's all a big work out out for me,

    [Verse 5]
    OK, let's go! One morning
    A DS came round to my house
    He looked like a wrinkly old Belgian (with Kermesse written all over him)
    He was wearing a beret and had a hangover
    He drank my Imperial Pastry Stout in a large bidon
    Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
    Like a Flandrian in a field


    [Verse 2]
    OK, let's go! Mind your cadence, keep your nose clean Paolini, Boonen, Marco Ghiani**
    Don't mention the TUE
    (Today's not the day the Sky/Ineos will fall down metaphorical embankments)
    Or that I will have to go without a drink
    Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh
    It's all a big workout for me

    [Chorus]

    [Verse 1]
    OK, let's go! my soigneur upped and left
    She walked out on me, it's a sad sad situation and it's getting more absurd
    She broke everything, the bank, the essential massage oil jar
    And she left me all alone
    Like a total energie hotline
    Stuck here faced with being on hold for 4hrs 56 minutes listening to some obscure Vivaldi tune***.

    [Chorus]

    *Training hard for the boyhood dream and immortal glory of the Lanterne rouge, now I know what the purpose was even though I didn't make it up before.
    **Oh sh*t, sorry, wrong sport
    ***Although I am in queue position. 2... hundred and seventy six.
    seanoconn - gruagach craic!
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    edited July 2023
    Stage three:

    And so to Bayonne, where as well as their famous ham I'm told that the local shipyards are known for inventing a special device to illuminate fishing gear. So if you're a maritime electrician who needs a Bayonne net light fitting, you now know where to go.

    Today's stage saw Neilson Powless in another futile break to hoover up a meagre number of points for the measled jersey. He was joined in the endeavour by Laurent Pichon, and - contrary to everybody else's complaints - the team radio for once shared some useful information. The first was an instruction to Powless to keep rolling through "as long as the pace isn't too high". There was certainly no danger of that - Pichon was eying up a long range attack of his own, and sure enough dropped straight through the chasing pack to drop himself into the top ten.

    The radio was also constantly telling Powless not to work too hard. It's clear that EF Education Easypost have realised the easiest way to land the truly big prize isn't to go gallivanting up hills like some kind of idiot, but to put your feet up, roll around at the back, and compete for the one true prize. Unfortunately despite their hints to "work on his morale, Neilson - if you destroy it totally the pair of you can roll in twenty minutes down", Powless failed to understand the tactical situation and bizarrely rolled in with the main bunch despite a couple of extremely promising roundabouts offering an honourable way out, and indeed off.

    Elsewhere there were - Mario voice - attacks here, attacks there and attacks inna the tyres. There have been rumours of mechanical doping within the pro ranks for years now, and the sudden spate of thumb-tack assisted punctures suggests that somebody has finally perfected a way of undetectably puncturing in order to gain time on LR. Well, I say "undetectably" - the sudden loss of air and pulling over for a new wheel wasn't exactly going unnoticed by the TV director, and nor was the enthusiastically grinning local giving Alexi Lutsenko here a big thumbs up for his cunningly timed wheel change.



    There was good news for the French at last though, as on top of Pichon making a move Lanterne veteran Olivier le Gac has moved to ninth on LR, and even better than that Alexis Renard has moved to fifth. The cunning, er, young fox. With Cavendish likely to be involved at the wrong end of the race again tomorrow he can surely rise higher than that, and the only problem is that Astana's Fedorov is confirming his status as their protected rider by further increasing his lead. Taking seconds wherever you can isn't limited to Pogacar, you know...

    Tic tac toe:



    Thumb tacks slow:


  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 41,394
    Astana are dominating the team competition and we haven’t even reached the mountains.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    I think it might well change - we really are right at the start of the tour still - but Fedorov is starting to look serious about this, and he'll have Cavendish to work for him in the mountains.
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,560
    Interesting internal Danish comp there yesterday, the three only beaten by Fedorov and his dastardly tack ticks
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  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Punctured bicycle? On a hillside desolate?

    Ah, yes, I recognise this one - it's clearly this Charmig man.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Stage four:

    It's now half eleven at night in the UK, and I'm checking in nervously to find out if today's stage has finished yet?

    Everyone talks about those magical days on the tour when attack after attack goes, and the race never settles down - and today was one of those days. With the stage obviously marked for the sprinters, the entire field were determined to slope off the back. Whilst this created some problems for commentators - the need to accommodate a Netflix generation who think the tour is wall to wall yellow jersey action means that they couldn't mention the greatest prize of all - it meant that the cognoscenti could enjoy the full range of cleat lubrication, heavy bottles and strategically taken "natural breaks" as people tried desperately to send the rest of the race down the road.

    Unfortunately this meant that everyone rather marked themselves out of it, and the impact of an extra slow stage on everyone's faculties meant that the really dramatic efforts to gain time were launched far too late and promptly fell foul of the 3km rule. But that's grand tour races for you - sometimes the important days turn out to be those where nothing seemingly happened at all.

    Tomorrow - break out your Yorkshire Carol Deckers, we're off t'Pau.

    Ten green bottles:


    Tension headache:




  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 41,394
    De Buyst seems to have mastered the injury that is severe enough to allow a concerted attempt at the Lanterne instead of lazing about at the other end of the race giving a lead out and without it putting him out of the race.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    It has that sort of sound about it, doesn't it?
  • pinno
    pinno Posts: 51,691
    Did someone say 'roundabout'?!
    seanoconn - gruagach craic!
  • mididoctors
    mididoctors Posts: 17,648
    S4 so many riders went for GC they neutralised each other. This is sort of negative racing that's killing the sport
    "If I was a 38 year old man, I definitely wouldn't be riding a bright yellow bike with Hello Kitty disc wheels, put it that way. What we're witnessing here is the world's most high profile mid-life crisis" Afx237vi Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 pm
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    The whole point of inviting wild card teams is to animate this kind of stage, but apparently they're determined to wait for a mountain stage to go straight out the back.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Confirmation that LLS and - more relevantly for this thread - Jack Russel / poodle cross Guarnieri are both DNS today, the latter having slipped to eighth on LR despite his initial stage win. It's so easy to overcook a strategic injury in this game...
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    edited July 2023
    Stage five:

    After yesterday's rest day all eyes were on the peloton to serve up some action, and Fabio Jakobsen delighted the crowd by losing no time in, er, losing time. As soon as the road headed upwards he shot off the back with Mørkøv on a long range attack. In what looked suspiciously like a coordinated team effort, Julian Alaphilippe was simultaneously sent to the front of the race to drive things on and hopefully drag a confused lanterne field away from the escapees.

    Unfortunately for Jakobsen, however, the rest of the peloton had a quick count on their collective fingers, and a bunch of the usual suspects sat up in order to chase down the break. So whilst the commentators were getting excited about Quinn Simmons' latest unfortunate swerve to the right in the main group, the real race behind was quietly being shut down.

    Today was the earliest in the race that an HC climb had been included for several years, and the consensus is that it produced some good racing. The problem with mountain stages later in the Tour is that everyone simply rides to survive, but today's stage allowed the leaders to firmly establish a pecking order and for Jakobsen and Mørkøv (as well as Lampaert, who also dropped back to help later) to move smoothly into the top ten - ample reward for their early attack. The organisers even deigned to provide some coverage for once of the Tour's most important, if least covered, competition:



    Tomorrow we have more boring mountains, and the competition for a souvenir Jacques Goddet - I like to think it's a little statue of him in some sort of tacky shell grotto thing, possibly with a holy water dispenser. Or - given the era he covered - possibly something more medicinal...

    Taylor Swift's Eras:



    Not So Swift Errors:


  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    edited July 2023
    Stage 6:

    It's funny, isn't it? Stick a Sky jersey - or later an Ineos one - on a load of riders hired specifically for their ability to ride together as a team and grind their opponents into the dust and everyone whinges about them destroying the sport. Stick the name of a silicon sealant on them and suddenly everybody's perfectly happy.

    This is by way of me complaining about the state of the lanterne rouge, which is suffering badly from the arrival of the mountains. I mean, just look at the final ten on today's stage:



    Literally the only unexpected item in the middle aisle there - inevitably weighed down by a host of items you never meant to pick up but seemed like such a bargain at the time (an inflatable kayak, some DIY tools, Chris Froome...) - is Quinn Simmons of Lidl Trek. Literally everyone else comes from just one of two teams, both of whom are absolutely loaded with lanterne talent.

    Driven by an incredibly buoyant Mark Cavendish - seriously, have you ever seen him look so relaxed and happy at a race? - Astana now lock out the top four places, with Fedorov retaining the tail light. Join us tomorrow to see if an actual race breaks out...

    Underall:


  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,560
    It's marginal gains. We know we won't see proper time gaps with hills this big. Wait until the rolling stages come round again.

    But anyway... unexpected inflatable in middle aisle?

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  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    We expect to see the racing neutralised, but seeing a total lockout between just two teams is taking the Mørkøv.
  • takethehighroad
    takethehighroad Posts: 6,711
    We don't seem to have a post of the Tour thread, but "Quinn Simmons' latest unfortunate swerve to the right" deserves to be lauded
  • kingstongraham
    kingstongraham Posts: 26,800
    Could this finally be the perfect leadout for Cav by Astana?
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 41,394

    Could this finally be the perfect leadout for Cav by Astana?

    It looks like his lead out men are trying to half wheel and steal his glory.
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 41,394
    It's good to see Moscon finally showing his true potential after all those years of trying to work out what sort of race suits him best.