For any of you who kind of follow road racing like I do, I occasionally watch ex-pro Chris Horner’s youtube channel where he makes daily posts and gives his opinions on races, and whatnot. Having been a pro for a very, very long time, through the “iffy” years of the sport, I tend to take what he says with a bit of salt as they say. But still, he makes good points. His recent video discusses why he doesn’t understand what the heck Top Pidcock is doing, and what his team is doing, by letting him compete in MTB races, the week before the TDF starts. And at one of the hardest, most crashy races in years. 

And I agree with him. What does he actually gain from doing these XC races? As early season training, and for fun, I totally get it. If I could show up at any race, let alone a world cup, and be almost guaranteed to win? Heck yeah I’d be showing up every chance I got. When he goes to road races, he more often than not does NOT win. 6th at the Tour de Swiss is great, but that’s not a win. Third in a time trial is not a win. He’s kind of normal at road races…if that’s possible.
So we have one week, less actually, until the TDF starts. Then a week after that’s done, the Olympics, in which it was announced he’s doing both the MTB and Road races. So why, on earth, would it make any sense to show up in Switzerland, by himself no less, and take a chance with zero to gain other than the applause (and disdain I might add) of a mtb crowd? Who knows. He actually crashed a few times, and any one of those seemingly little spills could have done some damage and screw up the most important month of his year, July.
People can complain all they want about him, you could even say he’s got advantages that others do not by being on Ineos. But, all the “advantages” in the world won’t help him go down the rocky hills like him. The man has mtb skills unrivaled in my opinion. Skills can’t be enhanced, it’s the one equalizer in MTB that doesn’t exist in road racing. He can handle his bike, with little to know skills training before the race. He’s scary good. All the pros are scary good, but he’s extra scary good. MVdP holds nothing over Pidcock in that department. No one apparently does.
Photo: WHOOP UCI Mountain Bike World Series