Ok, I'm set with Omloop and I've put in a team for the Spring Classics Purist Forum Competiton and, well, is that it for the weekend? Of course not! There's the Vuelta a Murcia this weeekend, too! Who doesn't love a race where Valverde is riding?
Well, the 34th issue of the Vuelta a Murcia is being run this Saturday, the same day Omloop is being held, but, of course, in a warmer climate!
Choosing a winner should be easy? Right? I mean you've got Valverde, Quintana and Sanchez there, right? They could easily go 1-2-3. But what about the next placings? Care to take a stab at who can make a Top 20 appearance? Care to venture a guess who might even take it other than these Top 3? Well, I've narrowed down the competitors to the following list of riders with their respective game ranking. If you're up to it, pick any 3 riders other than Valverde, LL Sanchez and Quintana that you think might take a Top 20 appearance. I'd expect that the Top 20 will come from the group listed below, but if you think somebody else can crack the Top 20, take a look at the start list at PCS (http://www.procyclingstats.com/race/Vuelta_Ciclista_a_Murcia_2014-Startlist).
Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas Movistar Team 25.4
Alejandro Valverde Movistar Team 32.6
Luis León Sánchez Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 10.9
Daniel Navarro Cofidis, Solutions Créd 14.8
Tiago Machado Team NetApp – Endura 9.4
Marcos Garcia Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 6.5
Davide Rebellin CCC Polsat Polkowice 10.6
Luis Angel Mate Cofidis, Solutions Créd 11.1
Ruben Fernandez Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 3.0
Ruben Plaza Molina Movistar Team 11.1
David Arroyo Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 3.0
David De La Cruz Melgarejo Team NetApp – Endura 8.5
Javier Moreno Bazan Movistar Team 11.4
Antonio Piedra Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 14.1
Jose Herrada Movistar Team 18.6
Jerome Coppel Cofidis, Solutions Créd 15.2
Yoann Bagot Cofidis, Solutions Créd 8.0
Pablo Lastras Garcia Movistar Team 11.9
Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil Movistar Team 25.7
Maciej Paterski CCC Polsat Polkowice 8.7
Jose Joao Pimenta Costa Mendes Team NetApp – Endura 8.5
Stephane Poulhies Cofidis, Solutions Créd 14.8
Miguel Minguez Euskadi 3.0
Lluís Guillermo Mas Caja Rural - Seguros RGA 3.0
Jaroslaw Marycz CCC Polsat Polkowice 3.0
Carlos Barbero Euskadi 3.0
If I had to guess, I'd say these 3 could take a shot at having the best placings against the Top 3 of LL, AV and Quintana:
Daniel Navarro Cofidis, Solutions Créd
Tiago Machado Team NetApp – Endura
Marcos Garcia Caja Rural - Seguros RGA
There's also a gaggle of Continental Teams participating. They're listed below. Some of them have been pretty active in some races, so, just for fun, care to list the team, from those that appear below, that will produce the highest placing?
These are the Continental Teams in the race:
ActiveJet Team AJT
Burgos BH-Castilla y León BUR
Keith Mobel-Partizan KMP
Louletano-Dunas Douradas LDD
Team Ecuador ECU
My guess is Euskadi (ORB) will produce the best placing from these teams, maybe with Minguez or Barbero. I'll post results after the race.
By the way, here you'll see Valverde and LL having breakfast earlier this week while training for Murcia , courtesy of @xoaquinmateo.