Cobbles, Breakaways and Bunch Sprints.

I started this post running through what happend during the traditional start to the Euro racing season. Then I realized that my writing was stale, boring, and could be read at one of the other, more mainstream sites. Sadly, my anthropology degree did not give me the skills of a journalist. And while some of us are not feeling it because of doping scandals I’m still willing to believe and let myself get excited about racing.

On Saturday a breakaway survived (perhaps because of its citzens) to the line. Seeing a small group make it in before the bunch is always exciting. Hell I even root for the break when I know its doomed. There’s a “just maybe” element to my personality. Those small group finishes are even more exciting when a young gun uses a mix of panache and tactics to pass a big name for the win. I’ll admit to being a slight fan boy for Garmin-Barracuda crew, which made me even more pleased that it was Sep Vanmarcke who timed his sprint a bit better Boonen did.

It turns out that Vanmarcke didn’t only show panache when he attacked on the section of cobbels, but also when he had the guts to stand up in front of the team and ask for their full support. When you make a move like that, you better make sure you’re at the front at the moment of truth. In the end, he made the veterens show their cards before playing his. Good work Son!

Sunday was Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne with Cav taking the honors. It didn’t appear to be much of fight for him. Still, it showed that Cav and Team SKY have worked out the issues that plauged them in Oman. Hell, he even managed to win despite puking his guys out during the race.

I used to poo-poo the sprint finish. I once thought them boring, selfishlessly so. I didn’t see my-self as a sprinter and as such didn’t see the value in watching the charge to the line. How wrong I was!

The inner ring has a great breakdown of sprinting styles on his sight and will defir to his expertice. I will say that I love Cav’s low slung spinny style. He might not be able to pump out as many watts as some, but he knows how to win with what he’s got, and that’s what its about.

Look at nearly every picture of Cav sprinting and he's lower, more compact than any other sprinter. Just part of the reason for his success.

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