All things being equal, Lance beats Merckx - Page 3
Page 3 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast
Results 51 to 75 of 121
  1. #51
    scruffy nerf herder
    Reputation: funknuggets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    4,484

    Since Today's stage is a bore....I'll bite

    well, I think the last few posts have it straight. Lance without his team and radios, likely does not beat Eddy one on one, especially with both on the same equipment... either eddy on the new stuff or lance on the old.

    But then again, <<<>>>>>we all know that Eddy was doping anyway. <<>>>
    so sayeth the funk....

    Chris

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    "The RBR Lounge. You won't ever find a more wretched hive of scum and villany. We must be cautious."

  2. #52

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    1,126
    Quote Originally Posted by atpjunkie
    ya'll must have been sleeping through your evolutionary science classes or attended Religious Academies to think Human Physiology has noticably changed ina 30 year span.

    Nope. But modern chemistry sure has. And before anyone gets it in their heads... I am not saying Lance is doped.... but a large number of domestiques in the peloton are, which is about the only thing accounting for the speeds in races being what they are.

    The funny thing is that argument can be used both to favor Merckx and Armstrong. I will leave it to you guys to figure out how.

  3. #53

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    1,126
    Quote Originally Posted by MaRider
    Does anyone know what Merckx could do for 1HR time trial at sea level? I know about Mexico city, but you can't really compare this to sea level records. Or what he averaged in regular time trial stages, if there are any accurate numbers...
    I understand how that might seem like it would make for a decisive point in this argument, but it won't. In Merckx's day, in a time trial, you rode a standard bike. Maybe with cowhorn bars, but more or less a standard bike. There were not full carbon time trial rigs with aerobars developed in a wind tunnel and head fairings and disc wheels or tri-spokes. If you look at the numbers for the increase in speeds in pro cycling there are only two places where the speed increase is apparent enough to say it's actually there and not related to other outside factors. One is time trial speeds. Modern bikes are at a huge advantage. Not by weight or anything like that, but by aerodynamics and the wind tunnel research put into them. If Merckx had a bike like Hamilton's BMC with Lance's Giro helmet, his time trial speeds may have been 3 to 5 kilometers an hour faster than what they were. And what they were was pretty damn fast even today.

    The other place is the speeds of the rest of the peloton, as compared to the top riders. Much of that could be that better overall athletes are getting involved in cycling just to be a domestique because cycling now pays pretty well, whereas 30 years ago there were still great top riders, but I would argue that today's modern domestique is far superiour to those of Merckx's day. Modern drugs may play an enormous role in that as well. But if you look at the top speeds of the Tour over the past 30 years, they don't go up that much in that time span. An example is that Merckx's 1971 Tour was listed as having an average speed of 38.084 kph over 3608 km. Armstrong's 2000 Tour was listed at 38.570 kph over a nearly identical distance of 3630 km. So Merckx's average speed was less than half a kilometer an hour slower over nearly the same distance.

    This is a no win argument, but I think when you look objectively at that facts, they seem to line up in Merckx's favor. If you consider that his rides 30 years earlier are no slower than Armstrong's today, with the time trial exception, then you must be able to see that Merckx had to have been the faster man when you eliminate the aerodynamic benefits Lance has due to modern technology.

    Just my opinion... but I think Merckx would have crushed Lance...all other factors being equal.

  4. #54

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    1,126
    Quote Originally Posted by funknuggets
    well, I think the last few posts have it straight. Lance without his team and radios, likely does not beat Eddy one on one, especially with both on the same equipment... either eddy on the new stuff or lance on the old.

    But then again, <<<>>>>>we all know that Eddy was doping anyway. <<>>>
    But how good was his dope compared to Armstong's?? Eddy had Caffeine suppositories and amphetemines.... Lance has Actovegen, HGH, GH1, NESP... and of course amphetemines and caffeine suppositories too.


    (don't think I am being too serious... I am just playing along....)

  5. #55

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    139

    I understand why you guys believe Merckx would beat Lance

    but it is false logic to assume he would do so based on his performance then and how many races he won in a year. It means nothing in that I am questioning if the man/athlete he was then if transplanted into today's TDF, could he beat the modern day cyclist champion like Lance? I am not saying if EM were racing today and trained like the guys do now etc etc. I am saying if you took EM as the racer he was then and magically put him in this tour, I bet anything that he wouldn't win. As we were discussing before, athletes today are no match for previous generations in most sports. I know basketball history and can tell you point blank that Wilt Chambelin wouldn't even be mediocre as a center against the modern centers. EM's contemporaries weren't as well prepared back then. Many athletes even smoked in the 60s and 70s. I remember baseball players smoking the dugout for christ's sake. Hey, it is a silly argument, but all of you guys who make assumptions that because EM dominated his competition in the past, he would be as effective today. That is flawed logic and you know it.



    Quote Originally Posted by russw19
    Lazy, that is why I am pretty sure that those who say Eddy would win hands down say that. Look at his history in the Tour all while racing 100 races a year. Now imagine if all he did was focus his entire efforts on the Tour like Armstrong does. I tend to think if Eddy were racing today he could hold the Yellow for 18 of the 20 stages if he wanted and win 10 or more stages along the way. I think Lance is absolutely amazing in what he has accomplished, but it's still my opinion that he is no Eddy Merckx.

    Your quote above is very true... but I think the person who is forgetting the impact of how much Eddy raced per year and the fatigue that had to have caused him is you.

  6. #56
    Burning Fists of Love
    Reputation: ttug's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    6,899

    Talking time travel, versus flawed logic

    Quote Originally Posted by Lazywriter
    but it is false logic to assume he would do so based on his performance then and how many races he won in a year. It means nothing in that I am questioning if the man/athlete he was then if transplanted into today's TDF, could he beat the modern day cyclist champion like Lance? I am not saying if EM were racing today and trained like the guys do now etc etc. I am saying if you took EM as the racer he was then and magically put him in this tour, I bet anything that he wouldn't win. As we were discussing before, athletes today are no match for previous generations in most sports. I know basketball history and can tell you point blank that Wilt Chambelin wouldn't even be mediocre as a center against the modern centers. EM's contemporaries weren't as well prepared back then. Many athletes even smoked in the 60s and 70s. I remember baseball players smoking the dugout for christ's sake. Hey, it is a silly argument, but all of you guys who make assumptions that because EM dominated his competition in the past, he would be as effective today. That is flawed logic and you know it.
    When Boardman had his swan song and barely beat Eddys hour record, he was hobbled for 2 days afterwards. The man had a visible limp. Looks like he wasnt doing to well huh? Not bad for a record that was almost 17 years old.

    You assume that better trained riders can beat a gifted rider. This is also flawed as you have not defined better trained. Oh and by the way, until we time travel, not much to compare there huh?

    As far as strict logic, you cant disprove something in logic. Odds are I could get a perfectly logical argument for the existence of 4 headed penguins in the Gobe desert. The logic would be flawless, but again, you could not logically disprove it.

    There is no comparison here as more than just training has changed since the 70's.

  7. #57

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by ttug
    When Boardman had his swan song and barely beat Eddys hour record, he was hobbled for 2 days afterwards. The man had a visible limp. Looks like he wasnt doing to well huh? Not bad for a record that was almost 17 years old.

    You assume that better trained riders can beat a gifted rider. This is also flawed as you have not defined better trained. Oh and by the way, until we time travel, not much to compare there huh?

    As far as strict logic, you cant disprove something in logic. Odds are I could get a perfectly logical argument for the existence of 4 headed penguins in the Gobe desert. The logic would be flawless, but again, you could not logically disprove it.

    There is no comparison here as more than just training has changed since the 70's.
    One thing that many Merckx fan like to omit is that his 1-hour records were set at Mexico city at altitude, while Boardman's record was set at sea level. Air density is 20% less dense at Mexico city, and resistance is proportional to air density.
    Researchers say that even taking into account reduction in VO2max due to altitude effect, riding at Mexico city constitutes about 1.7 kph advantage, which is pretty significant, don't you think? (http://www.pponline.co.uk/encyc/0510.htm)

    Additionally, scientists have done elaborate calculations to take into account aerodynamic setup, showing that Boardman's and Rominger's 1HR performances are significantly superior to those by Merckx, Moser and Obree.

    So it seems that Rominger and Boardman were indeed fitter than Merckx, showing a greater power outputs than previous record holders, and the advances in 1hr record is not entirely due to technological advantages.

  8. #58
    Burning Fists of Love
    Reputation: ttug's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    6,899

    Thumbs up yes, it was at altitude

    Quote Originally Posted by MaRider
    One thing that many Merckx fan like to omit is that his 1-hour records were set at Mexico city at altitude, while Boardman's record was set at sea level. Air density is 20% less dense at Mexico city, and resistance is proportional to air density.
    Researchers say that even taking into account reduction in VO2max due to altitude effect, riding at Mexico city constitutes about 1.7 kph advantage, which is pretty significant, don't you think? (http://www.pponline.co.uk/encyc/0510.htm)

    Additionally, scientists have done elaborate calculations to take into account aerodynamic setup, showing that Boardman's and Rominger's 1HR performances are significantly superior to those by Merckx, Moser and Obree.

    So it seems that Rominger and Boardman were indeed fitter than Merckx, showing a greater power outputs than previous record holders, and the advances in 1hr record is not entirely due to technological advantages.
    Merckx spun a 52x14 for the hour. He trained by creating a home made mask to mimic the thinner air. I think we can all say that the man was just a bit driven. I am sure there is cause for alot of speculation there. Additionally his bike was lighter than current specs would allow.

    Calculations are wonderful. However, they are not replicas. The issue is the data and how it was calculated. If you have a wind tunnel and can show the data for all three at once in a triple blind test with exact set ups that would be wonderful. Otherwise, its speculation at best.

    The real question is that since these men were fitter (little argument here) why couldnt they use a traditional set up and break the record? IMO, they did not have the mental or physical strength. I cant recall if anyone else tried that (traditional set up and got the time) after Eddy. Let me know if I am wrong here.

    Moser used aero equipment when he broke the record and to date, Eddy still thinks of him as a weaker cyclist. I would tend to agree as I do not recall Moser having several overall GT wins under his belt.

  9. #59
    Not Banned
    Reputation: atpjunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49,013

    Rominger, Boardman

    check their Palmares from their HR record seasons and compare to Merckx. Once again, they were HR specialists, eddy won 2 GT's and some classics. Regardless, once again this comes down to Rominger and Boardman having far superior training methods, nutrition and science not because they were 'superior' riders. someone again said 'do the evolution', which in 30 years time is next to nil and shows a huge flaw in that argument. if human physiology had/has gone through some dynamic shifts Lemonds Tour TT record wouldn't still hold. So once again, the only REAL changes in cyclists (athletics on a whole) has been in better nutrition, training, equipment so if you could take an Elite athelete of that era, pre-prime and could raise them using modern methodology they'd be elite athletes today. So the only way to compare across time lines is by what they achieve(d) against their peers. In this case, as stated Eddy wins.
    simple

  10. #60

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by ttug
    Merckx spun a 52x14 for the hour. He trained by creating a home made mask to mimic the thinner air. I think we can all say that the man was just a bit driven. I am sure there is cause for alot of speculation there. Additionally his bike was lighter than current specs would allow.

    Calculations are wonderful. However, they are not replicas. The issue is the data and how it was calculated. If you have a wind tunnel and can show the data for all three at once in a triple blind test with exact set ups that would be wonderful. Otherwise, its speculation at best.

    The real question is that since these men were fitter (little argument here) why couldnt they use a traditional set up and break the record? IMO, they did not have the mental or physical strength. I cant recall if anyone else tried that (traditional set up and got the time) after Eddy. Let me know if I am wrong here.

    Moser used aero equipment when he broke the record and to date, Eddy still thinks of him as a weaker cyclist. I would tend to agree as I do not recall Moser having several overall GT wins under his belt.
    Boardman broke Eddy's record using Eddy's bike. He broke it by small distance (like 30 feet), however what is usually not mentioned is that he did so at sea level where like I said air density is much higher. It was definitely a much more superior performance, and I could easily believe the 1.7 kph advantage of Mexico City. Remember the Mexico City Olympics with a whole bunch of track records (sprints, jumps) broken? Thin air helps tremendously which is why Merckx went there to set the record in the first place.

    I also felt it was somewhat arrogant of Merckx to say that "weaker man has beaten the strongest man" about Moser's 1HR record using disk wheels. After all, he wasn't using 1930 version of the bike himself either. And he specifically went to Mexico city to take advantage of altitude (as did Moser), on which he is still getting a break from UCI, so he was looking for every advantage he could get at the time as well.

    The fact that UCI would totally change their rules with the "best athlete performance" vs. "1 HR record" or something like that, requiring old-fashioned Merckx-era bike while not putting any limits at altitude is totally bogus.

    And the fact that Boardman has set the record in 2000, at the end of his career, while in the same year he lost to Ulrich, Armstrong, Ekimov, Hamilton, and many others at Sydney, and additionally he was beaten at World Champs by other time trialists like Gontchar, Jalabert and Zulle implies that others could probably better his mark substantially. The year when he was world TT champion was 1994, and he has lost some form since then. His 1-hour record (using TT bike) was set in 1996.

  11. #61
    Burning Fists of Love
    Reputation: ttug's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    6,899

    Lightbulb No, Boardman rode an approved machine

    Quote Originally Posted by MaRider
    Boardman broke Eddy's record using Eddy's bike. He broke it by small distance (like 30 feet), however what is usually not mentioned is that he did so at sea level where like I said air density is much higher. It was definitely a much more superior performance, and I could easily believe the 1.7 kph advantage of Mexico City. Remember the Mexico City Olympics with a whole bunch of track records (sprints, jumps) broken? Thin air helps tremendously which is why Merckx went there to set the record in the first place.

    I also felt it was somewhat arrogant of Merckx to say that "weaker man has beaten the strongest man" about Moser's 1HR record using disk wheels. After all, he wasn't using 1930 version of the bike himself either. And he specifically went to Mexico city to take advantage of altitude (as did Moser), on which he is still getting a break from UCI, so he was looking for every advantage he could get at the time as well.

    The fact that UCI would totally change their rules with the "best athlete performance" vs. "1 HR record" or something like that, requiring old-fashioned Merckx-era bike while not putting any limits at altitude is totally bogus.

    And the fact that Boardman has set the record in 2000, at the end of his career, while in the same year he lost to Ulrich, Armstrong, Ekimov, Hamilton, and many others at Sydney, and additionally he was beaten at World Champs by other time trialists like Gontchar, Jalabert and Zulle implies that others could probably better his mark substantially. The year when he was world TT champion was 1994, and he has lost some form since then. His 1-hour record (using TT bike) was set in 1996.
    Boardman did not ride Eddys bike. His bike would have been heavier. The distance of 30 feet while impressive at sea level does not jive with the idea that at higher elevation he would have done better. He would have needed time to adapt to the atmosphere. He did what Eddy did, he trained for the specific effort. The issue is that it took 17 years.

    UCI has alot of very bad and really stupid rules. I agree 100%. Was it right to say oh sure here is the normal bike etc etc NO. I think its a crock as well.

    BUT to their credit, the ABSOLUTE record is still on the aero machine.

    I do want to take issue with Eddy being called arrogant. He was not arrogant. He was an a55hole. BUT unlike so many others, he had the ability to shut his competitors up. I prefer this far and away over the whiny bags of [email protected] like Simioni who blame everyone but their Mommy on a bad day.By the way, MOSER as a humahn being lacked a bunch of humility as well. BUT again, its the sport and the accomplishment. Not the super swell people who want to hug the stuffings out of you....(yes, that was sarcasm)

  12. #62

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by atpjunkie
    check their Palmares from their HR record seasons and compare to Merckx. Once again, they were HR specialists, eddy won 2 GT's and some classics. Regardless, once again this comes down to Rominger and Boardman having far superior training methods, nutrition and science not because they were 'superior' riders. someone again said 'do the evolution', which in 30 years time is next to nil and shows a huge flaw in that argument. if human physiology had/has gone through some dynamic shifts Lemonds Tour TT record wouldn't still hold. So once again, the only REAL changes in cyclists (athletics on a whole) has been in better nutrition, training, equipment so if you could take an Elite athelete of that era, pre-prime and could raise them using modern methodology they'd be elite athletes today. So the only way to compare across time lines is by what they achieve(d) against their peers. In this case, as stated Eddy wins.
    simple
    But it's not simple!

    We agree that it's not evolution, however as cycling has become more professional and the pool of potential athletes has broadened, the field has become much more competitive in the last 30 years, for every sport. Why did Bannister struggled to break 4 minute mile while 20 years later high schoolers could do it? If it was mostly mental, then why didn't Bannister himself improve on his own mark once he broke through?
    If everything is so simple, how do you explain evolution in world records in almost every sport? Is nutrition and training and equipment really so much better as to produce 20-year old runners capable of running 26:20 for 10K which would LAP Lasse Viren, who totally dominated those distances in the 1970ies, probably comparable to the way Merckx dominated cycling? What equipment made this possible?
    Marathon record is now 2:04, which would leave behind the best performance of Frank Shorter, dominant figure during 1970ies, by more than a MILE!

  13. #63
    Not Banned
    Reputation: atpjunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49,013

    answer is yes

    training/nutrition and coaching has gotten that much better. let's see hmmmm what did they lack back then
    1)Heart Rate monitors, on-the-spot blood lactic samplers, and the technology to know what to do with the readings. hell add the concept of zone-training, unheard of in 1969

    2) Physical trainers/ therapists and Doctors with huge Human Physiology expertise ( my pal was responsible for Lindsey Davenports comeback) that use Science to build training programs, recovery and rehabilitation

    3) the concept of peaking for an event. unheard of to the extent it is now. Even my 'tapers' for big meets in high school were done by a seat of the pants field

    4) Nutritionists, dieticians who specifically design and monitor an athletes intake

    you keep going back to this distance running stuff but it is a non-issue. Distance running was a low budget/ low interest sport in that era where huge populations of the world with massive potentials for the sport hadn't even been introduced yet. If you want to keep using track and field use the 100 meter or 400 meter. Records are set but their incremental nature shows a more exact cghange in trending as related to improvements of training science. and yes Jesse Owens would be top class if again he used my time transplant method. This distance thing is like using Soccer in the US as a model. well 30 years ago the US couldn't qualify for the world Cup so it shows how much more fit, superior US soccer players are than their historical counterparts. Soccer (futbol) didn't draw top-shelf US athletes (still doesn't really but is improving) as there is no financial incentive to attract kids with potential. They go where the coin is (Basketball, etc...) or say Tennis among the African American community. You don't think there are/were some Williams sisters whose talent was never actualized as they didn't have exposure to that sport? So can the distance crap as it's a relative newness makes it a constant red herring to this debate.
    I bet Phidippedes would be faster than snot given my method though. ;0)

  14. #64

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by atpjunkie
    training/nutrition and coaching has gotten that much better. let's see hmmmm what did they lack back then
    1)Heart Rate monitors, on-the-spot blood lactic samplers, and the technology to know what to do with the readings. hell add the concept of zone-training, unheard of in 1969

    2) Physical trainers/ therapists and Doctors with huge Human Physiology expertise ( my pal was responsible for Lindsey Davenports comeback) that use Science to build training programs, recovery and rehabilitation

    3) the concept of peaking for an event. unheard of to the extent it is now. Even my 'tapers' for big meets in high school were done by a seat of the pants field

    4) Nutritionists, dieticians who specifically design and monitor an athletes intake

    you keep going back to this distance running stuff but it is a non-issue. Distance running was a low budget/ low interest sport in that era where huge populations of the world with massive potentials for the sport hadn't even been introduced yet. If you want to keep using track and field use the 100 meter or 400 meter. Records are set but their incremental nature shows a more exact cghange in trending as related to improvements of training science. and yes Jesse Owens would be top class if again he used my time transplant method. This distance thing is like using Soccer in the US as a model. well 30 years ago the US couldn't qualify for the world Cup so it shows how much more fit, superior US soccer players are than their historical counterparts. Soccer (futbol) didn't draw top-shelf US athletes (still doesn't really but is improving) as there is no financial incentive to attract kids with potential. They go where the coin is (Basketball, etc...) or say Tennis among the African American community. You don't think there are/were some Williams sisters whose talent was never actualized as they didn't have exposure to that sport? So can the distance crap as it's a relative newness makes it a constant red herring to this debate.
    I bet Phidippedes would be faster than snot given my method though. ;0)

    The only reason I use distance running as example is because it's the closest to cycling in terms of aerobic capacity demands etc. Feel free to look over progression of world records in 100m, 400m or any other sport and you will see that Owens would lose to Borzov, and Borzov would lose to Greene, or that Juantorena would lose to Michael Johnson so badly, it would be painful to watch. Don't like running - look at swimming, or powerlifting, or jumps and throws, or any other "measurable" sport. Distance running was every bit as competitive, if not more competitive in the 1970ies as cycling. It's a much more simple and more accessible sport than cycling. But there's still a tremendous improvement.

    This discussion is getting tired, so let me sum up with some pointers:

    1. Merckx was the best cyclist of his era and shown an uprecedented dominance that wasn't matched and will never be matched. However, in most sports athletes have shown more dominance in the past as the field is only becoming MORE competitive - a natural trend.
    2. Despite all the hype, if we took Merckx at his prime and time-transported him into todays world, gave him access to all the new equipment and a top team, he would not have won Tour De France against Lance (not even in 2003). He would lose a huge amount of times on the climbs and couldn't match Ullrich or Lance in time trial.

    3. Despite all the hype about his 1HR world record, there are three major reasons it stood for 17 years: 1. Development of new bike components (which was 17 years later disregarded by UCI) 2. the fact that his record was set at altitude 3. Most top time trialists don't give a damn about 1HR record anymore.
    Merckx's 1HR record was intrinsically inferior to Boardman's record due to altitude difference, which is often omitted to underscore the awesomeness of Merckx. Again, if you transported Merckx from 1970ies, put him on a TT bike he would not get on a podium at any of the TT world champs. Perhaps if he spent several years using the nutritional and training advantages riders have today he could be up there with Honchar and Millar, but even that is somewhat doubtful as I don't see many riders of his size doing well at ITT anymore.

    So - Merckx was much better than 1970ies peloton, and Lance is much better than 2000 peloton. It's also clear that 2000 peloton is much much better than 1970ies peloton, and quite likely that Lance is much fitter than Merckxs. Sure, Lance cannot go for solo breakaways or sprints, but that's only because cycling has changed so dramatically as a sport over the past 30 years. I cannot imagine anyone doing that ever again - can you?

    Was Merckx the best rider of all times? Perhaps, depending on how you define it. If Merckx was the best cyclist, then it's also quite likely that Jesse Owens was the best sprinter, Paavo Nurmi was the best miler, Babe Ruth was the best baseball player, and Jim Thorpe was the best decathlete and also the best football player. Domination was always greater in the past. However, it's quite likely that Jordan was better than Bird, and that Green is better than Owens, and that Dvorak is better than Thorpe, in which case Armstrong is better than Merckx and whoever comes after Armstrong is better than Armstrong.

    Naturally, I would be extremely surprised if someone wins 5 tours again, for the same reason I mentioned below - sports get only more and more competitive as more and more people become involved in it. The distance between the first and the second or the first and the tenth guy decreases all the time. This is what makes Armstrong's five victories (and the sixth coming) so absolutely mind-blowing. It's very difficult to imagine someone as dominant as Gretzky or Jordan or Zatopek or Popov ever again. Even including Armstrong's specialization and his team and the money and everything else, it's still unbelievable. Look at what happened this year to Mayo, Heras, Hamilton, Simoni, Vinokurov, Sevilla, Ullrich and other favorites. The same thing could have happened to LA and it didn't. Maybe he is lucky, but he is competing in a whole different environment from the one Merckx used to compete in. And with all of our admiration for Merckx, we are downplaying just how much harder cycling is nowadays. Desire to win is nothing unless you now how to win. It's much more difficult to restrain yourself on all but several key stages than just to follow your instincts and attack whenever you feel like knowing that nobody can match your attack. Winning nowadays requires a lot more strategy and preparation than in Merckx days. Because it's so competitive ycling has become mental chess game between aerobic monsters of almost equal ability, which to me is much more exciting than "alpha-male domination" games of Merckx era.

  15. #65
    Burning Fists of Love
    Reputation: ttug's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    6,899
    Quote Originally Posted by MaRider
    The only reason I use distance running as example is because it's the closest to cycling in terms of aerobic capacity demands etc. Feel free to look over progression of world records in 100m, 400m or any other sport and you will see that Owens would lose to Borzov, and Borzov would lose to Greene, or that Juantorena would lose to Michael Johnson so badly, it would be painful to watch. Don't like running - look at swimming, or powerlifting, or jumps and throws, or any other "measurable" sport. Distance running was every bit as competitive, if not more competitive in the 1970ies as cycling. It's a much more simple and more accessible sport than cycling. But there's still a tremendous improvement.

    This discussion is getting tired, so let me sum up with some pointers:

    1. Merckx was the best cyclist of his era and shown an uprecedented dominance that wasn't matched and will never be matched. However, in most sports athletes have shown more dominance in the past as the field is only becoming MORE competitive - a natural trend.
    2. Despite all the hype, if we took Merckx at his prime and time-transported him into todays world, gave him access to all the new equipment and a top team, he would not have won Tour De France against Lance (not even in 2003). He would lose a huge amount of times on the climbs and couldn't match Ullrich or Lance in time trial.

    3. Despite all the hype about his 1HR world record, there are three major reasons it stood for 17 years: 1. Development of new bike components (which was 17 years later disregarded by UCI) 2. the fact that his record was set at altitude 3. Most top time trialists don't give a damn about 1HR record anymore.
    Merckx's 1HR record was intrinsically inferior to Boardman's record due to altitude difference, which is often omitted to underscore the awesomeness of Merckx. Again, if you transported Merckx from 1970ies, put him on a TT bike he would not get on a podium at any of the TT world champs. Perhaps if he spent several years using the nutritional and training advantages riders have today he could be up there with Honchar and Millar, but even that is somewhat doubtful as I don't see many riders of his size doing well at ITT anymore.

    So - Merckx was much better than 1970ies peloton, and Lance is much better than 2000 peloton. It's also clear that 2000 peloton is much much better than 1970ies peloton, and quite likely that Lance is much fitter than Merckxs. Sure, Lance cannot go for solo breakaways or sprints, but that's only because cycling has changed so dramatically as a sport over the past 30 years. I cannot imagine anyone doing that ever again - can you?

    Was Merckx the best rider of all times? Perhaps, depending on how you define it. If Merckx was the best cyclist, then it's also quite likely that Jesse Owens was the best sprinter, Paavo Nurmi was the best miler, Babe Ruth was the best baseball player, and Jim Thorpe was the best decathlete and also the best football player. Domination was always greater in the past. However, it's quite likely that Jordan was better than Bird, and that Green is better than Owens, and that Dvorak is better than Thorpe, in which case Armstrong is better than Merckx and whoever comes after Armstrong is better than Armstrong.

    Naturally, I would be extremely surprised if someone wins 5 tours again, for the same reason I mentioned below - sports get only more and more competitive as more and more people become involved in it. The distance between the first and the second or the first and the tenth guy decreases all the time. This is what makes Armstrong's five victories (and the sixth coming) so absolutely mind-blowing. It's very difficult to imagine someone as dominant as Gretzky or Jordan or Zatopek or Popov ever again. Even including Armstrong's specialization and his team and the money and everything else, it's still unbelievable. Look at what happened this year to Mayo, Heras, Hamilton, Simoni, Vinokurov, Sevilla, Ullrich and other favorites. The same thing could have happened to LA and it didn't. Maybe he is lucky, but he is competing in a whole different environment from the one Merckx used to compete in. And with all of our admiration for Merckx, we are downplaying just how much harder cycling is nowadays. Desire to win is nothing unless you now how to win. It's much more difficult to restrain yourself on all but several key stages than just to follow your instincts and attack whenever you feel like knowing that nobody can match your attack. Winning nowadays requires a lot more strategy and preparation than in Merckx days. Because it's so competitive ycling has become mental chess game between aerobic monsters of almost equal ability, which to me is much more exciting than "alpha-male domination" games of Merckx era.
    2. Despite all the hype, if we took Merckx at his prime and time-transported him into todays world, gave him access to all the new equipment and a top team, he would not have won Tour De France against Lance (not even in 2003). He would lose a huge amount of times on the climbs and couldn't match Ullrich or Lance in time trial.

    WRONG

    If you calculate the wattage output of these folks on most of the major climbs that Eddy and Lance and for that Matter Hinault rode, they are very close if not the same. So, sorry.
    Check out Big Migs wattage in the TT's you are WRONG AGAIN

    As to the notion of what todays peleton finds prestigious etc etcHOW THE HELL DO YOU KNOW????? The Hour is sacred to mmost of the pros I have seen attempting it or interviewed within the last 3 years...

  16. #66
    Not Banned
    Reputation: atpjunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49,013

    the Hour

    Lance is debating it (rumor has it)

    okay so if we follow that 'things get better over time'
    it would therefore be true that
    Bird is better than Dr J or Walt Frazier
    Kobe is better than Jordan
    Kobe is better than Magic

    Michael Vick is a better QB than
    Joe Montana
    Troy Aikman
    Brett Farvre
    Roger Staubach
    Terry Bradshaw

    I've got mesh under jerseys with less holes than your argument

    once again swimming, yup people get faster just like in track. are we evolving physically or training wise? quick here's your answer, check the average weight/size increase of NFL linebackers or DB's than compare it to the average weight size increase of the general population.

    So I'll take Jordan, Montana and Eddy.
    baseball....who cares. Tony Gwinn is one of the most dominant hitters of all time and look at his physique.

  17. #67
    Not Banned
    Reputation: atpjunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49,013

    and Spitz

    unless Phelps goes HUGE!!!

  18. #68

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    [QUOTE=ttug] WRONG

    If you calculate the wattage output of these folks on most of the major climbs that Eddy and Lance and for that Matter Hinault rode, they are very close if not the same. So, sorry.
    Check out Big Migs wattage in the TT's you are WRONG AGAIN
    [\QUOTE]

    I would be VERY curious as to what, if anything, do you base this on?

    Can you show me your wattage output calculation? Anything aside from capitalized "WRONG" would do.

    In front of me I have a paper, J Appl Physiol
    89: 1522-1527, 2000 "Scientific approach to the 1-h cycling world record:
    a case study" by S. Padilla et al. which states that adjusted for aerodynamics Merckx has a wattage output of 380W, while Boardman had 462W and Indurain had 510W.

    Your response?

  19. #69

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    139

    Ugh, you miss the point.

    Kobe and Jordan have played in the same games and are of the same era. Bird was better than DrJ (who is my childhood hero, Julius Erving that is) but Bird was a better player. Hate Kobe, but he is a better athlete than Magic. Vick is far superior an athlete than the older QBs but that doens't make him smarter or more skilled. There is a difference.



    Quote Originally Posted by atpjunkie
    Lance is debating it (rumor has it)

    okay so if we follow that 'things get better over time'
    it would therefore be true that
    Bird is better than Dr J or Walt Frazier
    Kobe is better than Jordan
    Kobe is better than Magic

    Michael Vick is a better QB than
    Joe Montana
    Troy Aikman
    Brett Farvre
    Roger Staubach
    Terry Bradshaw

    I've got mesh under jerseys with less holes than your argument

    once again swimming, yup people get faster just like in track. are we evolving physically or training wise? quick here's your answer, check the average weight/size increase of NFL linebackers or DB's than compare it to the average weight size increase of the general population.

    So I'll take Jordan, Montana and Eddy.
    baseball....who cares. Tony Gwinn is one of the most dominant hitters of all time and look at his physique.

  20. #70
    Not Banned
    Reputation: atpjunkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49,013

    I just got some Pretzels

    and it reminded me of something.....

    Beckham is better than Pele

    Iginla is better than Gretzky
    Sakic is better than Gretzky
    Scott Stevens is better than Orr.

    anyone have any additions?

  21. #71
    Burning Fists of Love
    Reputation: ttug's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    6,899

    Thumbs up the REPLY

    [QUOTE=MaRider]
    Quote Originally Posted by ttug
    WRONG

    If you calculate the wattage output of these folks on most of the major climbs that Eddy and Lance and for that Matter Hinault rode, they are very close if not the same. So, sorry.
    Check out Big Migs wattage in the TT's you are WRONG AGAIN
    [\QUOTE]

    I would be VERY curious as to what, if anything, do you base this on?

    Can you show me your wattage output calculation? Anything aside from capitalized "WRONG" would do.

    In front of me I have a paper, J Appl Physiol
    89: 1522-1527, 2000 "Scientific approach to the 1-h cycling world record:
    a case study" by S. Padilla et al. which states that adjusted for aerodynamics Merckx has a wattage output of 380W, while Boardman had 462W and Indurain had 510W.

    Your response?
    What was the formula used to calculate a standard deviation using Aero equipment when the aero equipment used changed in every attempt.I would find it amusing at best if you could do that since most of the aero folks who did the wind tunnel work at Boeing cant do it with airplanes. I want to also know how they just so happen to have the ability to have the real wattage output on data that was NOT recorded or NOT tracked in any repeatable fashion. The bottom line is simple. If you cant repeat the result, it aint science. Oh and by the way, how do you adjust for the aero edge as that changed every time too? Thanks for playing. You could create a value and say hey here is the deviation etc etc. BUT, how did they get that? Pull; it out of their a55?

    Additionally, what was the math used to calculate on the bike position changes and the relation to generating WATTS. Apples and oranges and guess what, NO actual data for that for Eddy either. This is also in relation to the now banned Superman position etc etc oops, Eddy didnt ride that oh golly tamale what shall we do???

    The answer is that AGAIN, there is NO comparisin that can be done unless of course you can repeat or recreate the result. OR travel in time. As such, your "argument" is no more or less valid than any other supposition here. GIVEN the times Eddy climbed and GIVEN the times others climbed : The BEST GUESS anyone will have is, they were comparable. And I really want to say GUESS because, I cant really see how anyone could really claim as yourself that hey I really have the lowdown and you all have to figure it out.

    BUMMER, thats gotta kill the buzz

    Any other great tips for bad science you wanna discuss?
    Last edited by ttug; 07-23-2004 at 02:40 PM.

  22. #72

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by atpjunkie
    and it reminded me of something.....

    Beckham is better than Pele

    Iginla is better than Gretzky
    Sakic is better than Gretzky
    Scott Stevens is better than Orr.

    anyone have any additions?
    You'd have to compare athletes from different eras, as we do in Lance vs. Merckx. So while it's too early to tell if Kobe is better than Jordan (I kinda doubt), it's clear that Jordan is better than Bird and that whoever is the best basketball player for the next 20 years is likely to be better than Jordan. The irony is, he will be a less dominating player, making everyong reminisce about the time Jordan could win games on his own.

    Beckham is definitely a better player than Pele. He is not as dominant, but he is much, much better. And he is better than Maradonna who was better than Pele, even though Maradonna was a jerk, a cheater and a junkie and an arrogant sonova*****. I like watching Pele play, but he was facing the bushleague of his time. Ronaldo or Zidane are better players than him, but it doesn't matter because we measure up things relative to the rest of the field, and those two guys can't be consistent enough to be so much better than the rest. It's not their fault, it's the fault of "the rest" who are much better than they used to be.
    Pele spoiled it for everyone, just like Celtics of the 1980ies with Bird have spoiled it for us, just like Jordan spoiled it for us, just like NY Yankees of 1930ies and 1940ies, or just like Merckx spoiled it for us with his domination of cycling.

    One thing to be sure - the records are meant to be broken, but it's incremementally more difficult to do so, and we should be aware of that fact. So if someone breaks Armstrong's 6 victories at TdF record we should not be whining that they didn't win as many stages or didn't have as much of a margin of victory or didn't get sick with cancer - a win is a win is a win. And the more time passes, the more difficult it is to get one.

  23. #73

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by ttug
    What was the formula used to calculate a standard deviation using Aero equipment when the aero equipment used changed in every attempt.I would find it amusing at best if you could do that since most of the aero folks who did the wind tunnel work at Boeing cant do it with airplanes. I want to also know how they just so happen to have the ability to have the real wattage output on data that was NOT recorded or NOT tracked in any repeatable fashion. The bottom line is simple. If you cant repeat the result, it aint science. Thanks for playing.

    Additionally, what was the math used to calculate on the bike position changes and the relation to generating WATTS. Apples and oranges and guess what, NO actual data for that for Eddy either. This is also in relation to the now banned Superman position etc etc oops, Eddy didnt ride that oh golly tamale what shall we do???

    The answer is that AGAIN, there is NO comparisin that can be done unless of course you can repeat or recreate the data. OR travel in time. As such, your "argument" is no more or less valid than any other supposition here.

    BUMMER, thats gotta kill the buzz

    Any other great tips for bad science you wanna discuss?
    With very basic laws of physics you can describe pretty accurately how much more of aerodynamic drag a solid disk wheel or a modern TT frame vs. diamond frame of the 1970 can provide. There are hundreds of people who publish research papers on this.

    What's even more amazing, is that they can take a picture of you in your TT setup, and using your aerdynamic setup predict with a fairly good precision how fast your 1HR time trial would be, based on your past athletic performances. In fact the scientists have done this for a number of athletes and have been pretty close, much closer than the predicted difference between 380 and 510 Watts.

    And if you have been paying attention at your high school physics course, here's a question for you - a cyclist EM travels 49 kph in an atmosphere that is 20% less dense than the one a cyclist CB travels at the same speed. How fast could EM go in the same atmosphere as CB? Hint: it's a very simple problem.

  24. #74
    AJS
    AJS is offline
    banned
    Reputation: AJS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    3,915
    The TdF is not the only race in cycling. If you want to compare other sports with cycling, wouldn't it be more relevant to compare racing sports, rather than B'ball and soccer?

    It's like saying A.J. Foyt was the best Indy car racer ever because he won so many Indy 500's. That's nice, except you have to do well in many other races in your sport to claim to be "the best", not just cherry-pick the few races you like as LA does.

    Merckx is still #1. Period.

  25. #75

    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by russw19
    An example is that Merckx's 1971 Tour was listed as having an average speed of 38.084 kph over 3608 km.
    Yes, anything can be proved while cherry picking average speeds:

    1970 - 35.589 kph
    1971 - 38.084 kph
    1972 - 35.514 kph
    1973 - 33.407 kph
    1974 - 35.241 kph
    1975 - 34.906 kph
    1976 - 34.518 kph

    vs.

    1999 - 40.273 kph
    2000 - 38.570 kph
    2001 - 40.02 kph
    2002 - 39.93 kph
    2003 - 40.940 kph

    Hmm. why don't we pick 1971 Tour De France and compare it to 2000 Tour De France. That seems fair enough of a comparison, as opposed, to, god forbid, 2003 TdF vs. 1973 TdF which might show a 22% difference in average speed.

    Seriously though, I agree with you on that domestiques of today are much better than domestiques of 1970. Which is why there's no way anyone can go for solo breakways - domestiques would reel them in immediately. The weakest french (nothign against the french) B-team in TdF can probably reel in Lance Armstrong if they really wanted.
    Which means LA cannot be as dominant as EM, yadda-yadda-yadda, read the whole thread from post #1.

Page 3 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Sheryl Crow's new song about Lance
    By Reed_Weedakowski in forum General Cycling Discussion
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 02-09-2005, 06:12 PM
  2. The tour de france is ASPLODING!!!
    By thatsmybush in forum Pro Cycling - Tour de France
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 07-16-2004, 08:51 AM
  3. Omigod!! Lance is behind!! He’s gonna lose!!
    By jumphress in forum Pro Cycling - Tour de France
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 07-09-2004, 04:54 AM
  4. Ullrich, Vino.....what about Lance???
    By soulsurfer104 in forum Pro Cycling - Tour de France
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-06-2004, 01:17 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT ROADBIKEREVIEW

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.