It’s funny when you think about it but in pro cycling there is no award for coach of the year, no prize to honor managerial skills.
If there was, then BMC’s Allan Peiper would be running away with the prize at this point in the season. His “step up or step out” approach is paying obvious dividends in every race BMC has contested so far.
From Dubai and Qatar to the Tour Down Under to the Tour of the Med to Flanders, Paris-Roubaix to yesterday’s Amstel Gold race, Peiper has a group of guys re-motivated and racing in a more cohesive way. He’s had wins from Cadel Evans, Tejay van Garderen, Steve Cummings, Taylor Phinney, Philippe Gilbert and Greg Van Avermaet came painfully close to winning in Flanders.
It’s been an impressive display from a big-budget squad that has consistently underperformed in recent years. Peiper has done an incredible job of setting prioroties, sorting out egos and schedules, setting clear goals and upgrading the logistics across the board. He’s also made it known to every rider at BMC from stars to domestiques that he needs to see the effort or they won’t be on the roster in the future.
How many quotes have we already read this season from people like van Garderen and Stetina and van Avermaet and Phinney that BMC almost feels like a new team? That’s how excited they are about riding for Peiper.
When old man Sammy Sanchez came on board at the very last instant after an entire career at Euskatel, he wondered aloud how many more wins he could have bagged riding for a more professional and dialed-in squad like BMC.
You only had to see how hard Sanchez worked for Gilbert in Amstel Gold to know how thrilled and re-invigorated he feels at BMC. The guy is smiling from ear to ear and already talking about his desire to stay with BMC next year. It’s a second youth for the little climber and we expect to see him playing a prominent role for Evans in the Giro d’Italia.
There isn’t an award for Best Director Sportif in pro cycling but BMC’s Allan Peiper would sure be the hands-down winner if there was one.