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Sean Kelly on Strava KOMs: ‘I don’t really take any interest in them’

Sean Kelly on Strava KOMs: ‘I don’t really take any interest in them’

Sean Kelly had some strong opinions when it comes to Strava KOMs in tears of  comparing them to races. On Sunday’s broadcast of Stage 8 of Paris-Nice–which saw some dramatic racing that resulted in Matteo Jorgenson, Visma-Lease a Bike, showcasing an impressive performance. Finishing eighth last year, the American seized the yellow jersey from his compatriot Brandon McNulty of UAE-Emirates, on the final day amidst the mountainous terrain near Nice.

Jorgenson made a decisive move on the fourth of five categorized climbs, launching an attack alongside Remco Evenepoel and Aleksandr Vlasov. He then stayed on Evenpoel’s wheel all the way up Col des Quatre-Chemins, finishing second and taking the jersey. The late breakaway trio on Stage 6, which included Jorgenson, McNulty, and fourth-placed Matthias Skjelmose, marked a significant moment in
the race.

KOMs versus racing

Fellow Eurosport commentator Rob Hatch told Kelly–who won the Race to the Sun a record seven times–that UAE Team Emirates rider Felix Großschartner had the Strava record for the Côte de Peille. Großschartner was working for McNulty to try and keep a quick clip to stymie Evenopoel’s chances to launch. As you can imagine, King Kelly certainly had some thoughts.
A KOM in training, Kelly said, is irrelevant when it comes to what’s going on in a race.

“Bah, these Strava times.You go out there, and you’re quite fresh, and you just warm up into it. Then you just blast up the climb,” he said. “These Strava times, I don’t really take any interest in them. In a week-long stage race like Paris-Nice, when you’re riding full gas, and in bad conditions, it’s a different game.”

Kelly is not the only former, or current pro, with strong opinions about the training platform.

Remco Evenepoel absolutely destroyed a famous KOM while training in Tenerife

In 2023, Evenepeol stopped uploading his info to Strava. He was taking a page out of Mathieu van der Poel, who stopped posting his data in January of the same year.

“People already know enough,” Soudal – QuickStep sports director, Klaas Lodewyck said in an interview with Het Nieuwsblad. “I don’t think you should put everything online either. Your rivals can read along. If I were a rider now, I wouldn’t do it.”

Van der Poel said something similar about sharing data to his rivals.

“I had decided for myself to share it for one year because I received comments left and right that nothing was known about my…

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