Mercer Boy wrote:
These guys are unbelievable climbers, but since they are generally terrible individual time trialists, they have little chance to win the Tour. Those type of guys normally win the polka-dot jersey. This year, the winner was Michael Rasmussen from Denmark.
Didn't Rasmussen have a chance to win it this year ....he was in contention for most of the race, until that terrible last stage.
You are right!
In fact, Rasmussen was in 2nd for quite a good amount of the Tour. He was less than a minute behind Lance until he wrecked that one day.
Richard Virenque always was close in the overall as well, but without the time trialing ability, he couldn't get close enough to Lance or Jan Ullrich.
Still, very few pure climbers win the Tour these days. You have to be excellent in both climbing and time trialing to gain the most time. Marco Pantani (RIP to the Pirate
) was the last guy to win the Tour without being a great time trialer. I remember that year; he took off by himself on a very hard stage taking all sorts of scary risks on the mountain descents and beat all the other riders by over 8 minutes.
The One, The Only, The Incomparable Mercer Boy.
blog (updated 6/21 - Pirates walkout.)