The 2012 US Pro-Challenge is on!
Better camera position during the second stage of the event, to view the actual performance of the athletes. No doubt there are spreadsheets of the performances; I’d rather get excited about how the athletes actually do what they do, and you can only do that by looking. Otherwise, what is the point of turning to the broadcast?
Jorge Camilo Castiblanco Cubides (Col), he did a very nice job sprinting on a climb, off saddle, hands on the drops, elbows well bent, in a good display of the trunk pelvic roll. David Zabriskie (USA), and I may have shifted some of the observations from one stage to the other in my notes, but a clear cut rotation of the trunk and hip hike. Something which is not easy to see when he time trials. On the subsequent stage, another monumental effort, but at some point, he suffered a significant engine failure (F5 out of 5); hands on the hoods, lower trunk rotation apparent along with a hike: What I could not tell if there was a delay of the hike, and how well connected the whole was. F5 may take many forms in different individuals. The remarkable thing was that he recovers to do the same thing the following day!
A good view of George Hincapie (USA), in his final race? A side view (not optimal viewing, but do need a George sighting somewhere). Sidebend hip hike, very active at a good rpm, apparent if you know what to look for. One of the first SBHH’s I noted in a time trial, some time ago, with a very clear hike motion.
Rafael Infantino Abreu (Col) attempting to slide away from a group with a trunk roll and a well defined hike.
Overall, the climbing portions and breakaways in particular, tend to isolate the cameras on areas of interest. I vote for more of this!
Jorge Camilo Castiblanco Cubides (Col), seated climbing, very clear pelvic tilt (timed with the downstroke) plus a hike, which I had only seen prior in members of the Rossetti Team at the track, a team under the guidance of Emile Abraham. May have been a feature of the steepness of the incline (I can’t tell). Off saddle, he tends to roll the trunk and hike the hips. While in terrain which may not be as steep, the tilt disappears. The level of coordination of this whole sequence is out of this world, using every available effort to remain in contact.
I am told cyclists remain perfectly still on their bikes to “conserve energy”. Nobody told this to the Colombian team who is leading the charge in breakaways and contributing to a very good spectacle, exactly what people want to watch.
A spectator by the side of the road, with a leg cast and crutches, attempting to “run” with the riders close to the finish. Clearly, one French fry away from a Happy Meal.
While the cameras were focusing on Castiblanco and others, Tejay van Garderen (USA) and Christian Vande Velde (USA) blow by to the finish. Vande Velde is in good position behind van Garderen at the sprint, takes a few pedal strokes with the SBHH off saddle, has to sit as he is even with TJ and off the saddle again. There was nothing left to give.