Thursday, February 24, 2011

Who's Doing What: A Few Of My Favorites


1: "VDV"...Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Cervelo)
He was fifth at the Tour Of Oman against a good field. Looks fit and healthy, and if he can refrain from crashing out of big races he should have a quality season this year. One last hurrah and a top ten at the Tour de France is not out of the question.

2: "TVG"...Tejay Van Garderen (HTC-Highroad)
He was second at the Volta ao Algarve against the strongest field of the year, so far. This kid is the "real deal"! He is the future of American stage racing. Nothing would surprise me this season, including a Grand Tour podium, but he is still a few years away from his peak.

3: "Shetland Jens Voigt"...Levi Leipheimer (RadioShack)
He was second at the Vuelta A Andalucia against an okay field. Levi can be as good as his tiny little legs and tiny little bike want to be. The trouble is that Mother Nature may have passed him by. If he can hang on the big climbs at the Tour de France, a top seven is still possible.

4: "The Canadian"...Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Cervelo)
He was sixteenth at the Volta ao Algarve. Hasn't ridden much early in the season. He and VDV will get all the GC love from their team at the Grand Tours, so look for him to possibly podium somewhere along the way.

5: "AK47"...Andreas Kloden (RadioShack)
He was fifth at the Volta ao Algarve. Can get top tens in his sleep at any stage race. In Mongo's opinion, if he is uninjured and fit, and not breaking the wind for Contador or Armstrong, Kloden still has an outside shot at the podium in all the big races.

6: "The Other Norwegian"...Edvald Boasson Hagen (Sky)
He was second at the Tour of Oman. Quite possibly the best "all around" cyclist in the world. I would be very surprised if he doesn't win one of the "Spring Classics" this year.

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