Friday, April 18, 2014

Broom Wagon: Cobbled Classics Wrap Up

Until Next Year
The Terpinator destroyed the cobbles this year

Well, not exactly, we are lucky enough to have a cobbled stage coming up in this year's Tour de France.  Time to rattle the bones of some of these ultra skinny climber types, I like it.  But, besides for that little taster, we will have to wait another year to feed our cobbles jones.  Let's recap.

Dwars door Vlaanderen:  In a sign of things to come, the cobbles of the Paterberg got Terpinated (trademark pending) by Maillot Jaune Guillame's killer late round selection, Niki Terpstra.  

E3 Harelbeke: Despite how it may have seemed, Peter Sagan did not come away empty handed from the spring classics season.  He managed a sprint victory, heading a podium group of Terpstra and Geraint that we would get to see a lot more of later in the classics.

Gent-Wevelgem: Degenkolb began the transformation from being considered a sprinter to being considered a classics rider by...winning a sprint finish.  The only thing more ironic is Degenkolb's hipster mustache, or is that the actual style in Germany right now?  Apparently, he shaved his euro stash afterwards thus, dooming his chances for victory in Roubaix. 

The Ronde: We all know how his one turned out.  An epic, legendary, history making effort to bridge the gap by Kristoff came up heart breakingly short.  And some other guy opened a beer on the side of a table or something.

Scheldeprijs:  Skittles owns this race, but I haven't had much of a chance to rip on my boy Ty Ty Farrar yet this year and he came "close" to making me eat crow with a second place finish.  "you don't do that"

Paris-Roubaix:  Another great edition of the queen of the monuments.  In the end, Terpstra got a way for the win, but there was a whole hell of a lot more going on in this race.  The final group was crazy strong.  11 national road race titles, 14 monuments, 30 grand tour stages, 3 cyclocross world championships, 1 road race world champion, 3 green jerseys, 6 gold medals and for the first time since 1992, 1 Tour de France winner.

As the dust settles can we determine a WFL winner here?  Most of us scored significant points.  Eric and Greg keep battling it out for 5th place while Volpe sees his annual Cancellera bump give him some breathing room.  Steven has been raking it in, a bit from G. Thomas but mostly off the cobbles with Contador.  Bill is probably the big winner here as he has inched even closer to first.

On to the Ardennes where we put away our roleurs and bring out our puncheurs.  The WFL is full of climby riders and this next week should be pretty fun.  Tune in. Wiskota!

Friday, April 11, 2014

On the Rivet

Paris - Roubaix

Who will hoist the trophy this year?

Tune in early because the action starts at 6 am on NBC Sports Live Extra.  In addition, there will be another Wiskota Team group text started as soon as the Commish can drag himself out his hotel bed.  

As for favorites, one name looms large.  Can anyone top Cancellera?  At this point it seems hard to imagine. Sep Van Marcke has seemed to be on the best form.  Boonen obviously has the most experience and wins, but was lacking in Flanders.  GVA has been ripping it up, doing everything but winning.  Phinney was born for this race, but is it too soon?  Eddy the Boss has been given the go ahead at Sky, will Wiggo and the Penguin be there in the end as well?  Kristoff seems like a real tough son of a bitch, can he make it to the velodrome? Will Thor finally get his?  Or will one of Omega Pharma's many 2nd lieutenants ride away from the pack?  I haven't even mentioned Sagan, Degenkolb or Pozzato... Everybody has got a dog in the race so fire up the laptop and hit the cobbles.

Predictions:

Wiskota Podium:
Cancellera
Sep
Boonen

Spoilers:
Hayman
Langeveld
Leukemans


Is it weird that I kind of want Wiggo to pull this out?  Tour/Roubaix winner, epic.  Also, I'm serious about that Haymaker pick, dude has serious experience.  


    

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Flanders!


Cancellera
It's Miller Time, Bitch!
Spartacus takes his record tying 3rd Ronde.  There have been so many races and so little time to recap.  The points are updated and ready for Roubaix.  Feel free to comment on your favorite moments from the cobbled classics season so far.

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Broom Wagon

...cleaning up after the weekend of racing. 

Milan-San Remo
There can be only one!
Kristoff unleashes the krakken in San Remo

An impressive Alexander Kristoff takes the biggest win of his career.  Cancellera sprints to a second place finish while WFL riders Cavendish, Stybar and Sagan round out the top ten.

Friday, March 21, 2014

On the Rivet

...who's racing hard this weekend. 

Milan - San Remo
The Sunny Italian Riviera: 2013
The first Monument of the season is here!  100 big points are on the line this Sunday.  Here's a quick list of who we should be looking for.  

WFL Favorites

Gregario Forza:  Nibbles

Team Volpe: Cancellera

Team Wiskota Dynamic:  Sagan

Mailott Jaune Guillame:  Kreuziger

Le Pacte de Loups:  Thomas

STP Greenline-Unobtanium: Van Avermaet

Taco:  Degenkolb

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Broom Wagon

...cleaning up after the week's racing.


La Ronca Takes Nice
It's all about the brown shorts
Pistolero Takes Tirreno
"I'm coming for you FrommeDogg"

Points, Points, Points.  Most teams (sorry Volpe) made a big jump in points last week as the WFL sent tons of riders to the all important week long stage races that mark the start of spring. 

 "The Race to the Sun", with it's new course saw "more aggressive" riders go for overall victory.  Stage wins and time bonuses were the name of the game as there was no TT or high mountain finish.  Perfect race for a climby puncheur with a finishing kick.  Carlos Betancur took advantage of a beneficial course and a strong team (that's right AG2R, a strong team) to take home the biggest win of his young career.  The sky is the limit for La Ronca.  Wondering why Betancur is nicknamed the raspy voiced woman?  Of course you were.  Click here and wonder no more.  

"The Race of the Two Seas" had a star studded lineup this year.  Froome dropped out as did Porte half way through.  However, that should not take away from Alberto Contador's dominant climbing performance.  Pistolero is back and showed some classic panache with an attack from 30 K to go, dropping the likes of Nairo Quintana on the penultimate climb.  If you haven't seen the end of this stage and it's 30% gradients you gotta check it out.  Also, Greg you should totally buy this T-Shirt.

All in all, there were plenty of points to be had.  Le Pacte de Loups was a big winner with Contador racking up huge points.  It could have been even bigger had Geraint Thomas not crashed out of Paris Nice. Team Dirty Sanchez's moved out of the basement with the help of 6 different rider's scoring including such legendary Taco rider's as Fuglsang and Degenkolb.  Wiskota Dynamic had a good week as well to retain the overall lead.  The biggest losers are Volpe, who has dropped to the bottom of the charts and Forza who just can't seem to keep the pace.  

Look for Gregario's "Chapeau" later this week as well as a preview of the first of the five Monuments, Milan-Sanremo. 

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Broom Wagon

... cleaning up after the week's events. 


The Classics Have Begun
The Season of the Strong Men

This weekend the classics got under way with the racing of the first cobbled classic of the season, the Omloop het Niewsblad.  Bill came up big with the huge Englishman Ian Stannard pulling off an impressive diesel style sprint.  He went super early and GVA just couldn't come around.  Lots of people picked up minor points here as WFL riders took the top 5 spots.  

It's recreation time!

The sprinters classic of Kuurne - Brussels - Kuurne ended with a group sprint as Quick step shredded the peloton on the few early hills and used their power to stay away until the end.  Boonen's sprint was all but a formality even with a speedy Moreno Hofland making a valiant effort.


A few crashes marked the beginning of the classics season. Most notably for BMC.  Both Thor and Phinney had injuries but both should be just fine.  Despite how bad it looks. 

Phinney continues to earn his stripes

The Classica de Almeria was also this weekend.  Only one WFL rider managed to score points here.  But it should be noted that those 5 points from Tiago Machado were enough to boost Eric the Neo-Pro past Gregario Forza into 4th place overall.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Spokes Man

... Talking points from the Commish


Predictions

A Grand Tour Stage, a thug poet body art competition, The Ronde



Name three things Pippo Pozzato is NOT going to win this season.

As March approaches and the first part of the season comes to a close (let's be honest nobody cares that much about Qatar) it is time for the real fun to begin.  Classics season is upon us.  This is where casual fans become pro cycling fanatics.  Many people cite the Omloop Het Volk (Niewsblad) as the real start to the season.  And as thus we here at the WFL should take the opportunity to get on the record now.  Who is going to win what this year?  Make some predictions and have some fun with it.  You can make any prediction you want, but if you are in need of some inspiration: What pick is your for sure lock of the season?  Surprise win of the season? Upset? Comeback?  Joker pick?  Let's hear it, bragging rights are on the line.

Monday, February 24, 2014

The Broom Wagon

... cleaning up after the week's racing.

Oh, Man
FroomeDogg seals the overall in Oman for the second year in a row.  Is this the beginning of another dominant season.  Greipel sprinted to three stage wins.  Is this the beginning of another dominant season?  With 5 different riders scoring, Team Wiskota Dynamic managed to extend his overall lead.  Is this the beginning of another dominant season?

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Spokes Man

... talking points from The Commish 


Is BMC Cool Again?

When BMC joined the Pro Tour in 2010 English speakers everywhere took note.  With the legendary Ochowicz of Team 7-11 fame at the helm and riders like Cadel Evans and Big George Hincapie leading the charge this quasi American team seemed like an obvious fan favorite.  A Tour de France win and a string of big name signings including Thor and PhilGil bolstered their reputation.  When TVG and Phinney (the great American hopes for the future) signed with BMC it became obvious this is the team to follow.  Well, that was 2 years ago and since then things haven't quite worked out as planned.  The retirement of Hincapie, a lack of results from their classics hopefuls, failure to win another grand tour and the less then meteoric progress of the great American hopes paired with the rise of another dominant English speaking team has left us with one question: is BMC still cool?


As 2014 gets into gear BMC seems poised to regain the title of coolest team.  But what really makes a team cool? Kits and Sponsors: Sure red and black is always cool and the whole Swiss watch connection naturally lends itself to the sport of racing.  National Champs:  Gotta do those jersey's well. Check the team pic above, looking good.  But we all know it's the riders that make the team.  Evans, Thor and Gilbert look to make a resurgence.  A cool team needs solid veterans but more importantly young guys who can shake things up.  Van Avermaet is a strong man to be reckoned with. Phinney is starting to win things and with his haircut and Twitter account he should keep the fans busy all year.  But the biggest change this year is the all out support for TVG.  Yeah, he gives a horrible interview but if he becomes the second American to win the Tour we won't care.  Oh yeah, did I mention they added a bad ass Colombian and Sammy Sanchez?  Cool again?  You tell me.