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FSA Directeur Sportif: Best Race Ever!

Two more crazy-close races end dramatically

Tim Wellens in Guangxi
Tim de Waele

It’s over!!

Another year of the FSA Directeur Sportif competition is in the books, and it’s time to celebrate the winners, throw some shade on the losers, and invite y’all to share your trials and tribulations and see what we learned this time around.


Men’s Race: Guangxi Drama

The men’s competition went crazy over the last six weeks, with teams rotating in and out of the top three at a dizzying pace. A month ago I covered the state of the race for the second time, which showed a totally different array of top teams than we’d seen a month before that. Mamie Nova held a lead on October 1 just ahead of Mute Legs and I Swear This Made Sense in February. Then Mute Legs collapsed and fell to 13th. The other two podium teams switched places. And VC Musette came out of nowhere, shot all the way to the top, and won the entire bloody competition.

How did he do it? WIth hot finishes by Primoz Roglic and Tim Wellens in Guangxi, primarily. And with a bunch of guys scoring in Paris-Tours, plus Thibaut Pinot in Lombardia. Just a lot of guys delivering something. Wellens and Roglic were both on Mute Legs too, so the separation happened in the other guys’ performances. So congratulations to DS Franck Feneon! I have invited him and the other contestants to chime in and talk about their travels. Final standings:

  1. VC Musette, 15,952
  2. I Swear This Made Sense in February... 15,582
  3. Mute Legs, 15,507
  4. \o/, 15,335
  5. Team Igloo, 15,328
  6. Paristrass, 15,213
  7. Ba dum Tiesj, 15,188
  8. Revolution, 15,160
  9. Crooked Rain, 15,099
  10. Tiesj Means Nothing to Me, Oh Vienna, 15,031

The consistent Tiesj Benoot worship theme reaches its apex here with two fantastic entries, the weird Ba dum Tiesj and the inspired last one that sent me down a Midge Ure YouTube rabbit hole for half an hour. Chapeau Tiesjbots!

FSA K-Force Seatpost

A Moment of Thanks to Our Sponsor!

I want to express my thanks to FSA, our sponsor lo these many years, for all their help keeping the competition going and for playing along as well. My bike project this year was an FSA affair, as I converted my ‘cross bike to a Cobbles Machine for our Flanders adventure this spring. I added K-Force bars, stem and seatpost to dampen the effect of riding a gnarly aluminum ‘cross bike on the infernal stones of Flanders. I threw on a pair of Vision TriMax 35 wheels for something that would roll beautifully while withstanding the endless pounding. And the result was the repurposing of an existing bike into a fast, comfortable (under the circumstances) ride on equipment that could handle the worst the sport has to dish out. The bike is back to being a ‘cross warrior and it’s faster and lighter than it ever was. I may need a frame upgrade just to balance things out.

FSA K-Force bars

Check them out. They love the Directeur Sportif competition, which should tell you that they are good people. But they also happen to make quality gear for serious riders.

The Women’s Race

In August Andrew handed out a few FSA DS mid-season awards, including top-scoring rider (Annemiek van Vleuten) and value pick of the year (Coryn Rivera). Jens had both of them on his team and put paid to the competition, becoming I believe the first Editor to win one of these competitions. He can give you the gory details, but considering he had three 1-pointers score 709, 476 and 342 points, I think it’s safe to say that he was the competition’s premier value shopper. You might even say he put his team together using only some cheap disposable aluminum wrenches with unpronounceable Swedish names. Chapeau to hatbeardglasses and FransV for their podium places as well, with nearly-as-inspired teams.

Your top ten:

  1. Team 1601, 15,454
  2. The Nicest Hotels, 15,160
  3. TT Team, 15,146
  4. Is This Really Worth the Grief? 15,045
  5. I Can Haz Bicykl, 14,956
  6. Life in the Bike Lane, 14,767
  7. ckdallas, 14,743
  8. PRO - Women, 14,721
  9. Tops, 14,583
  10. Queens of the Road, 14,573

And So On...

Any other results you wish to report? I don’t want to do this, but obligations...

Majope ran roughshod over the Editors’ Draft League this year. Normally I would try to cover my bitterness by saying something insulting about her team, but the fact is that she did it the right way, utilizing the 8th pick in the snake draft order (of 23 teams) to nab Tom Dumoulin, then nailing several more selections including Boasson Hagen in round 2, an inspired pick of Gilbert in round 3, and smaller triumphs like Boom in round 8 and Matti Brandle in round 11 which all turned into excellent value. She even survived the triple shitshow of donut Raymond Kreder (12th round), Hapless Heinrich Haussler (round 7, 15 points) and Nicola Boo-ffoni (9th round, 80 points). She beat Andrew by a full 1900 points and Ant1 by 2000, and she never let up after the Giro. I finished eighth, thanks to the brilliance of 2nd rounder Nibali, and not the blehlliance of top pick Diego Ulissi, but in general had way too many Italians to make a run at the title.

My regular team was very close to the bottom, and let us never speak of it again. Needless to say, I was below the Jimbo Line, which by the way has become something of an institution. This year the Jimbo Line was at position #444, of a total of just over 900 teams, making it a very accurate mark of where mediocrity (or worse) begins.

I will stop here but may continue later with some rider overviews, like best value and such. Hop on in and tell us about your team!