I'm exhibit A of people getting excited about Floyd Landis' chances of winning the Tour this summer, after his victories in California, Georgia and Paris-Nice. Still, these are all minor stage races, run at a time of year when the July heroes are working on their fitness. So what kind of indicator are these races of future Tour success?
on the flip...
- Tour of California: in its first year, no comparison.
- Tour de Georgia: Run four times; one winner (Lance, 2004) went on to win the Tour.
- Paris-Nice: Run 60 times (in varying formats); only two men have ever won here and gone on to win the Tour that same year -- and they both repeated this feat three times: Jacques Anquetil (1957, 61, 63) and Eddy Merckx (1969-71). Five other Paris-Nice winners won the Tour in other years: Louison Bobet, Jan Janssen, Joop Zoetemelk, Stephen Roche, and Miguel Indurain.
Conclusion: Let's see... How about, five-time Tour winners tend to grab a Paris-Nice or two along the way? People win the Tour for reasons other than how they did in Paris-Nice. Not that it can't be done, but there appears to be no meaningful correlation. So Landis better keep working.