1st Annual Comeback Rider of the Year Award (2021 season)

I hope you guys like it, I worked very hard on it. I tried to get videos on everyone’s wins or performances.


Welcome to the 1st Annual Comeback Rider of the Year Award (2021 season) that is presented by your very own Cycling News Forum. This will run alongside our other annual awards that we hand out at the end of the year. This is your host, SHAD0W93, and today we will look at the nominations for this award:

Egan Bernal, Mark Cavendish, Tom Dumoulin, Remco Evenepoel, Andre Greipel, Dylan Groenewegen, Fabio Jakobsen, Bauke Mollema, Primoz Roglic, and Rein Taaramäe with honorable mentions going to Chris Froome, Giacomo Nizzolo, Rigoberto Uran, Alejandro Valverde, Alexander Vinokourov, and Elia Viviani. Every victory I could find on Youtube has been attached.

A comeback means many things in the sporting world. You can comeback and win; from a deficit, after returning from an injury or retirement, being written off by media and forum members, or seasons of not winning. Sometimes you do not win during a comeback, it is a return to top form after an injury or events that took you out of the sport. There can only be one winner of this prestigious award but that does not take away from the performance the riders had this year and the effort they put in. They all had sensational comebacks.

As this is the 1st Annual Edition we will go down memory lane and reminiscence about comebacks cycling has witnessed. If you have a comeback that you're particularly fond of please share.




“Ginettaccio” Gino Bartali has the biggest gap between his first and last Grand Tour win, winning Grand Tours in 1936, 1937, 1938, 1946, and 1948 at the Giro d’ Italia and Tour de France. Bartali would have an eleven season gap between his first and last Giro d’ Italia and Tour de France win. Unfortunately World War 2 cut into Bartali’s Grand Tour success with the races not being held. During this time he would bravely serve for the Italian Resistance riding to help Jews during the war and carrying messages, documents, and towards the end stowed away passengers. The police were too scared to arrest Bartali due to his popularity and fame that could cause discontent and rioting. Bartali’s popularity famously eclipsed Mussolini and was only rivaled by Faustio Coppi. Bartali came back to win at the top of the two famous Grand Tours with his older age and after a war ravaged Europe. He is truly an inspirational story.
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“L'Americain” Greg LeMond returned to win the 1989 and 1990 Tour after being shot by a shotgun on a hunting trip and missing the 1987 and 1988 editions while being the defending champion when he won in 1986. On top of this injury LeMond had one of the most thrilling come-from-behind wins. entering the final stage in second place, 50” behind Laurent Fignon, LeMond not only won the final ITT on stage 21, Paris Champs-Elysées, 24.5 km (15.2 mi), but beat Fignon by 58”. LeMond would win the 1989 and 1990 Tour de France by a margin of 08" and 2'16". LeMond would win 3 stages of the 1989 Tour de France and the Road Race Championship in 1989 and the 1990 Tour de France with a brillant return from injury and near death.

NrRaceClassDateCategory
1Tour de France1990-07-22ME

NrRaceClassDateCategory
5World Championships - Road RaceWC1989-08-27ME
4Tour de France | Stage 21 (ITT)1989-07-24ME
3Tour de France1989-07-24ME
2Tour de France | Stage 191989-07-22ME
1Tour de France | Stage 5 (ITT)1989-07-06ME
1989 Tour De France - Greg LeMond
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02HfrgyaZBU
(English)
1989 Tour de France Final Time Trial - LONG VERSION - Greg Lemond - Laurent Fignon
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWyfb3H7LEg
(English)
1989 World Championship
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Mu1HD675Hs
(English)
1990 Tour de France
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhMiuwwO89I
(English)
 
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“Le Boss” Lance Armstrong, love him or hate him, returned after battling with cancer to win 7 Tour de Frances in a row with 22 stages on the road before being stripped of the overall wins and 20 stage wins. While Armstrong performed was aided with “circumstances”, returning from cancer and performing as he did is still a remarkable comeback.

The Best Of Lance Armstrong
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ix5XP05xLcM
(English)


“Der Kaiser” Jan Ullrich returned to the 2003 Tour de France in his best shape since 1997 to almost beat Lance Armstrong. Ullrich was thought of the next champion of the Tour de France after dominating the 1997 edition but the results never materialized. After three editions of the Tour de France where Ullrich finished second, two of which to Armstrong, and being in top shape in 2000 and 2001 while winning gold and silver at the Olympics and becoming World TT Champion he became depressed. 2002 was a rough year for Ullrich. In January he suffered a knee injury, in May he had his driver’s license revoked for a DUI, and in June he tested positive for amphetamine while taking it with ecstasy and was suspended for 6 months. After not riding competitively for over a year and being written off by many, Ullrich started the 2003 season on a new team that was going through their own financial and management issues. Ullrich entered the 2003 Tour de France listed as a favorite behind Lance Armstrong, Iban Mayo, Aitor González, Tyler Hamilton, Ivan Basso, and Gilberto Simoni. Ullrich won his first stage since 1998 in stage 12 47 km (29.2 mi) ITT by a 1'36" margin over second place Armstrong. Ullrich pushed Armstrong to the limit, finishing the closest anyone has ever done to him, 1'01" behind, and was only stopped from winning overall through sickness and his slack approach to the final ITT.


Jan Ullrich ► TdF 2003 ► Stage 12 ► Cap' Découverte (Zeitfahren) [18.07.2003]
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ign-iDNFTQ
(English)

Floyd Landis entered the 2006 Tour de France as a favorite with Alejandro Valverde, Levi Leipheimer, Andreas Kloden, and Cadel Evans after the ban of Jan Ullrich and Ivan Basso and unavailability for Alexander Vinokourov’s team to race. Landis went back and forth with the lead before he cracked on stage 16 dropping from 1st to 11th, 8’08” behind Pereiro. Landis would change all of this on stage 17. Landis would launch a blistering attack to solo ride 120km and win the stage. Landis jumped from 11th to 3rd and went on to win the overall on the road before being later stripped of the title. Landis won the stage 5'42" over second place Carlos Sastre and the overall 57" ahead of Óscar Pereiro

Tour de France 2006 Stage 17, Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne to Morzine
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M18h3VFIGtM
(English)
 
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“RoboBasso” Ivan Basso returned to the top in the 2010 Giro d’ Italia. Basso’s domination in the 2006 Giro d' Italia gave many the sighting of RoboBasso and what most thought would be the next Armstrong. After serving a 2 year doping ban, Basso returned to racing in at the 2008 Japan Cup and raced his first full season in 2009 and finishing 3rd (originally 5th on the road) 3'59" behind Denis Menchov at the Giro d' Italia and 4th 2'12" behind Alejandro Valverde at the Vuelta a España. Basso entered the 2010 Giro as a favorite along with his teammate Vincenzo Nibali behind Cadel Evans and Carlos Sastre. In a race that saw Nibali wear the Maglia Rosa for 3 stages and Basso out of sorts, he started stage 15 to Monte Zoncolan in eleventh but with determination and showing his past RoboBasso form, in a stage still reminisced about, repeatedly attacked the favorites group before winning by a 1’19” margin over Evans in second place after dropping him with 3.7 km to go. Basso would leap from 11th to 3rd after the stage and go on to win the Giro by a 1'51" margin over David Arroyo .

Giro d'Italia 2010 - Ivan Basso great win on Monte Zoncolan
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c6ZZGhggOKs
(Italian)

2010 Giro d'Italia https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLjDCQmFLKA_jXFxzFSorP6Q2oOLViqu0p (playlist)


“Ale Jet” Alessandro Petacchi upon returning from his suspension Petacchi’s career was in a drop off. In 2008 and 2009 he won 5 and 11 times respectively, the lowest since 2001. By the time of the 2010 Tour de France grand departure Petacchi was 36 and in the twilight of his career. Petacchi hadn’t raced the Tour since 2004 when his best finish was 8th. He had won 2 stages of the 2009 Giro but nothing else of note. Petacchi entered the Tour as a huge underdog of the younger sprinters and left with two victories and the Maillot Vert. Petacchi won stage 1 ahead of Mark Renshaw and Thor Hushovd after crashes ruined heavy favorite Cavendish’s chances. His win was a surprise but none thought he could win again but the very next bunch finish Petacchi surged off Cavendish’s wheel to take the win and seal the Maillot Vert. The 2010 Tour de France brought Petacchi back to the front of the world's eyes at 36 years of age. Petacchi ended the 2010 season with 8 wins, 3 being Grand Tour stages and the Maillot Vert.

Tour de France 2010 - Stage 1 - Crashes and comeback from an old sprinter youtube.com/watch?v=gqtfXt9aKms (English)

Tour de France 2010 - Stage 4 - Alessandro Petacchi vs Mark Cavendish
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1A6SVMpvCY
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1A6SVMpvCY


“Klödi” Andreas Klöden was on the downward spiral of his career at the beginning of the 2011 season. Even in his best seasons, Klöden was not racking up wins with only 22 career wins over 16 professional seasons. Despite ending 2007-2009 with 3, 2, and 2 respectively and riding well, Klöden spent those years in service of Vinokorouv, Contador, and Armstrong. He then followed up with a dismissible 2010 were his best overall classification finish was fourth in the Vuelta ciclista a la región de Murcia with four eighth place finishes in Volta ao Algarve, Skoda-Tour de Luxembourg, Tour de Suisse, and Eneco Tour, no wins, and a disappointing thirteenth in the Tour de France after Armstrong’s faltering. Klöden entered the 2011 season down in the depth chart as a leader but turned in one of his best seasons with 4 wins. Klöden not only had monster ITT form but his climbing shape was good as well. Klöden won 2 ITT, a road stage he won in a sprint against Samuel Sanchez, and Tour of Basque Country, while finishing second in Paris-Nice. Klöden entered the Tour de France as a dark horse and was riding extremely well, sitting 17” behind eventual winner Cadel Evans after 11 stages and able to match Evans in the TT. The only issue being, he had fallen twice in the previous stages and injured his back forcing him to withdraw. Even without this massive disappointment his 2011 season was a huge success and his last.


rRaceClassDateCategory
4Giro del Trentino | Stage 1 (ITT)2.HC2011-04-19ME
3Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco2.UWT2011-04-09ME
2Critérium International | Stage 3 (ITT)2.HC2011-03-27ME
1Paris - Nice | Stage 52.UWT2011-03-10ME

Andreas Kloden wins 2011 Basque Country - from Universal Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PDZA8HtKvI
(English)

Paris - Nice 2011. Stage 5, Final 5km.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nXkEVPUO6s
(English)

Andreas Kloeden - Last 2 km - 19.04.2011 winner of the 1st Stage of Giro del Trentino
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MXDF7wWDhBg
(Music/no commentary)
 
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“Cuddles” Cadel Evans winning the 2011 Tour de France and his magical 2011 season. After years of being written off and that he missed his window of winning the Tour de France in 2007 and 2008, Evans entered the 2011 Tour de France as a favorite behind Contador and Andy Schleck with the likes of Bradley Wiggins, Ivan Basso, Robert Gesink, Samuel Sánchez, Chris Horner, Andreas Klöden, Fränk Schleck, and Jurgen Van den Broeck considered favorites with him. Evans had a flawless three weeks while keeping the Schleck brothers and Contador in check to win the Tour in the final ITT. Evans would win the Tour with a 1’34” advantage over Andy Schleck. Evans would also finish 4th in the Points and King of the Mountain classifications. The Tour would mark off one of Evans most successful seasons with him winning 5 times, the most he had done so and only tied with 2014. Evans had massive success in stage races winning the overall classification at the Tour de France, Tirreno-Adriatico, and Tour de Romandie while also finishing 7th in Volta Ciclista a Catalunya, 2nd Criterium du Dauphine, and 7th USA Pro Challenge.


NrRaceClassDateCategory
5 Tour de FranceWT2011-07-24ME
4 Tour de France | Stage 4WT2011-07-05ME
3 Tour de RomandieWT2011-05-01ME
2 Tirreno-AdriaticoWT2011-03-15ME
1 Tirreno-Adriatico | Stage 6WT2011-03-14ME
The moment that won Cadel the 2011 Tour de France
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8HzvVEve4C8
(English)

TDF 2011 Individual Time Trial - Cadel Evans Takes The Lead
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56QQWWDfuG4
(English)




“Tommeke” Tom Boonen returned to the promised land in 2012 by winning the Tour of The Qatar, E3 Harelbeke, Gent-Wevelgem, Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix, and the National Road Race Championship. After last winning these races in 2009, 2007, 2011, 2009, 2006, and 2009 respectfully, Boonen won them all in arguably the best first half of a season a rider has ever had that saw him finish first 10 times. He ended the season with 13 wins, the first time since 2008 that he ended the season with double digit wins. Boonen won 2 overall and point classifications and gold at the UCI TTT World Championships with Omega Pharma-Quickstep This is Boonen’s last great season and it was one to be remembered.

NrRaceClassDateCategory
13 Paris-Bruxelles1.HC2012-09-08ME
12 World Ports Classic2.12012-09-01ME
11 World Ports Classic | Stage 12.12012-08-31ME
10 National Championships Belgium - Road RaceNC2012-06-24ME
9 Paris - RoubaixWT2012-04-08ME
8 Ronde van Vlaanderen / Tour des Flandres MEWT2012-04-01ME
7 Gent - WevelgemWT2012-03-25ME
6 E3 Prijs VlaanderenWT2012-03-23ME
5 Paris - Nice | Stage 22.UWT2012-03-05ME
4 Tour of Qatar2.HC2012-02-10ME
3 Tour of Qatar | Stage 42.HC2012-02-08ME
2 Tour of Qatar | Stage 12.HC2012-02-05ME
1 Tour de San Luis | Stage 72.12012-01-29ME
Tom boonen - 2012
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFVz7qjsKlk
(Music/no commentary)

E3-prijs Harelbeke 2012
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F5fDgE9KOGg
(Belgium)
2012 Ghent Wevelgem
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nk0_Fw2FQyA
(English)


#RondeTreasures: Tour of Flanders 2012 - Tom Boonen
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mXTvZGI-smI
(English)

2012 Paris Roubaix
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hu0XDsJED7A
(English)


“Ninja” Haimar Zubeldia was so underrated before the start of the 2012 Tour de France that he wasn’t even considered the leader or best rider on his team to ride for top 10 by media and forum members, besides one. On June 21, 2012 at 1007 PST Kokoso made his prophetic post.

I think Haimar Zubeldia "The congenial" (if he hasn't got a nickname) has better shot for GC than anyone in RSNT this year. Superior time trialist, good in mountains, experienced. He knows hot to do a good TdF. Last year he wasn't designated leader and still managed to finish 16th, which is not so bad, given the circumstances. This year he seems to be preparing specifically for TdF. A RSNT's secret weapon, nobody is counting on him or even mentioning him. I'll root for him, definitely.
Zubeldia would deliver on Kokoso’s promise with a team that had Frank Schleck, Chris Horner, Andreas Klöden, and Maxime Monfort as leaders and all who finished top 10 in a Grand Tour more recently than Zubeldia did, 3 of which had theirs in the Tour. Zubeldia's consistent riding in the mountains and time trial throughout the Tour saw him finish 6th, 15’41” behind winner Bradely Wiggins. The last time Zubeldia finished top 10 in the Tour de France or any Grand Tour was 2007. Zubeldia not only finished inside the top 10 but the best out of Radioshack-Nissan’s leaders with Schleck DNS 16, and Horner, Klöden, and Monfort finishing 13th, 11th, and 16th respectively. To add even more to this result is Zubeldia finishing 52” ahead of Brajkovič, a rider listed as team leader over him in the 2011 Tour de France.
 


“Vino” Alexander Vinokourov had a very quiet return to racing in the 2012 season after crashing out of the 2011 Tour de France and breaking his femur and contemplating retirement. His 2012 season had no success, and only finished inside the top 10 once with fourth place on stage 16 of the Tour de France though he was awarded the most combative rider of stage 18. Vinokourov entered the 2012 Olympic Road Race as the seventeenth favorite with 50/1 odds, tied odds with Evans, Haussler, and Rojas. Vino would be in a massive breakaway and attack with 8 kilometers to go with Uran Uran. They were able to hold off the chase group with VIno blowing by Uran to win Olympic gold to go along with his previous silver. Vino would race two times after this and end his career on a high as Olympic Champion.

Vinokurov wins Men's Road Race Gold - London 2012 Olympics
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsHCLXvYRW0
(English)


“El Pistolero” Alberto Contador returned to Grand Tour racing at the 2012 Vuelta a España after his controversial time off. He only raced the Eneco Tour beforehand finishing fourth overall and top ten in 3 stages. Contador was considered by many to be the heavy favorite with Chris Froome, Alejandro Valverde, and Joaquim Rodríquez as his challengers. The race would show Condator, Rodríquez, and Valverde as the best riders with Rodríquez the better of the three. Throughout the race Contador would constantly be outsprinted by Rodríquez or Valverde losing a couple seconds and bonus seconds to the two riders, he was dying by a thousand cuts. Rodríquez was constantly putting these attacks in at each finish. By the end of stage 16, Rodríquez was leading the overall classification with advantages of 28" over Contador and 2'04" over Valverde and this is after there was a 39.4 kilometer TT earlier in the race. Valverde could have been 55” closer but a crash followed by Team Sky increasing the pace caused him to lose time while he was in the Maillot Rojo. The next closest rider was Froome at 4'52”. Stage 17 was thought to be a breakaway stage coming after the last rest day but was far from that with riders scattered all over and Rodríquez and his team constantly being attacked by Contador and Valverde. Contador would attack with 50 kilometers to go to win the stage with 6” over Valverde but completely crack Rodríquez. The General Classification after the stage was Contador in the lead with an advantage of 1'52" over Valverde and 2'28" over Rodríquez. Froome was a further 9'40" back in fourth. Contador held onto his lead to win with an advantage of 1'16" over Valverde and 1'37" over Rodríquez. Froome was a further 10'16" back in fourth. Contador turned the Vuelta on it’s head to win the overall and lead to hope that the Spanish Amigos could beat Froome.

VUELTA A ESPAÑA 2012 FUENTE DE
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXs3xnrxl8M
(Spanish)

Vuelta a España 2012 Stage 17 Highlights (long version)
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0SGb9VyI37Q
(English)

VUELTA 2012 - La mejor Vuelta de la Historia. Contador-Purito-Froome-Valverde.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwjTQrv3XLU
(Spanish)

“The Condor of Varsseveld” Robert Gesink was coming to the crossroads of his Grand Tour leading career. He had health issues from his frequent crashes and had heart surgery. Gesink last top 10’d the Tour de France in 2010 and hadn’t finished inside the top 10 since the 2012 Vuelta though was 7th overall in 2014 before withdrawing to be with his pregnant significant other. Gesink kept having bad luck in correlation with Dutch riders performing well like Mollema, Kruijswijk, Kelderman, and ten Dam all having success in this time period. Gesink entered the 2015 Tour behind many favorites though was the leader of his team. He would go and repay them by consistently riding near the favorites group and finishing in 6th, 10’47” down from the winner but over 4 minutes ahead of Mollema and as the best Dutch rider. Unfortunately this was Gesink’s last top 10 as he now helps other riders though the 2015 Tour de France brought him back to the public’s eye.
 
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“Manx Missile” Mark Cavendish entered the 2016 season with many thinking he was well past his best. He saw his Tour de France stage wins drop substantially after 2011 with 3, 2, 0, and 1 stage wins equaling 5 from 2012-2015. In reference he averaged 5 per edition from 2008-2011. Cavendish still won 13 Grand Tour stages during this time. Despite winning 15, 20, 12, and 14 times during 2012-2015 and only seeing his average win count drop from 16.5 during the 2008-2011 period to 15.25 during 2012-2015 many thought Cavendish was past it. The vast majority thought Marcel Kittel, Andre Greipel, and Peter Sagan were the new fastest sprinters with Cavendish the fourth. Cavendish would have a phenomenal Tour to top off his 2016 season winning 4 of the 5 stages he contested before withdrawing on stage 17. Cavendish would finish his excellent season with silver medals in the Olympic Omnium and Worlds Road Race.
NrRaceClassDateCategory
10Abu Dhabi Tour | Stage 42.HC2016-10-23ME
9Abu Dhabi Tour | Stage 22.HC2016-10-21ME
8Tour de France | Stage 142.UWT2016-07-16ME
7Tour de France | Stage 62.UWT2016-07-07ME
6Tour de France | Stage 32.UWT2016-07-04ME
5Tour de France | Stage 12.UWT2016-07-02ME
4Amgen Tour of California | Stage 82.HC201605-22ME
3Tour of Croatia | Stage 22.12016-04-20ME
2Tour of Qatar2.HC2016-02-12ME
1Tour of Qatar | Stage 12.HC2016-02-08ME
Mark Cavendish Le Tour de France 2016 All Stage Wins
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kKcfWZw7ak4&t=6s
(Music/no commentary)

Mark Cavendish 2016 I Best Of
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_IJ4aa8O_A
(Music/no commentary)


“Froomey” Chris Froome entered 2018 with his season in doubt. With the 2017 Vuelta looming over his head, he decided to ride the Giro d’Italia for the first time. That then turned into competing for the Giro-Tour double. His Giro started rocky and he was bleeding time on top of crashing but his fortune would soon change. Despite winning on Monte Zoncolan many thought the overall win was past Froome. He had lost time on every stage bar Zoncolan and it looked like S. Yates and Dumoulin would be too much for him to overcome. He would sit 3'22” behind S. Yates and 2’54" behind Dumoulin. Froome put everyone on notice when he attacked on stage 19, 80 kilometers from the finish and showed how great of a champion he is. Froome showed how wrong everyone was. Froome would win the stage with an over 3 minute advantage to Carapaz, Pinot, Lopez, and Dumoulin. Even more important, he gained the overall lead with a 40" advantage over Dumoulin and over 4' back to third. Froome would defend his lead and even gain time the next day over Dumoulin and win his 6th Grand Tour at the time and third in a row holding all Grand Tour titles at the same time. Froome would defend his Tour de France title but ultimately finished third, 2’24” behind winner and teammate Geraint Thomas. Froome would have the best attempt at the Giro d’Italia since Pantani accomplished the feat.

Giro 2018 Stage 14 Final Kilometers
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RosPLH4qgwY

(English)
Giro d'Italia 2018 | Stage 19 Highlights | inCycle
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9USGFIF2UWc

(English)
Giro d'Italia 2018 | Stage 20 Highlights | inCycle
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AM-Dldyey50
(English)


“Balaverde” Alejandro Valverde needs no introduction. Since 2003 he has been winning in all manner of ways and showing incredible versatility. That winning nature and versatility though has come back to bite him as he has had many podiums and top 10s due to his versatility and strength when he could have won. That success carried into 2017 when he finished the season with 11 victories, including in Liege-Bastogne-Liege and La Flèche Wallonne again. Unfortunately a crash in the beginning stage of the Tour de France caused Valverde to finish his year with a fractured knee cap, ending his season and to many after, a Tour he could have podiumed or won. Many questioned if Valverde would be able to return to form for 2018 citing the injury and his age but he performed as he always did, winning and finishing inside the top 10. By the end of March, Valverde had 9 wins. Unfortunately he could not replicate his wins in La Fleche or Liege finishing 2nd and 13th. To end the season, Valverde would finally win the World Championship by outsprinting the others in his group after finishing inside the top 10 9 times and 6 podiums. He finished the season with 14 wins, 23 top 10s, 3 overall classifications, 2 points classification including the Vuelta, and finishing 5th in the Vuelta.
2018 World Champion | Alejandro Valverde | 3 Sprint Finish Victories! | inCycle
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wz-QP1pBB_M
(English)

2018 UCI Road World Championships - Men Elite Road Race
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toDqX2_KFDc

(English)
Vuelta a España 2018: Stage 2 highlights
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P9CeFNcspuQ

(English)
Last kilometer - Stage 8 - La Vuelta 2018
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9XKKUFeXx8
(no commentary)
 
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Honorable Mentions:

Chris Froome
2 years removed from his injury and Froome is still without a win since 2018. Froome put together 10372 racing kilometers in 68 racing days this year compared to 7137 kilometers and 44 race days in 2020 and 3852 kilometers and 26 race days in 2019. Even with this increase in improvement, Froome constantly left his fans with hope of more and that his form is getting better. Froome’s results would show his words were hollow as he only finished inside the top 50 of a race six times and top 25 twice and his best finish at the Tour de France was 90th. If you took the name from him you would never know he was in any of the races. While it is remarkable he was able to come back from his injury, it looks like the 2019 injury was too much for the 36 year old to overcome. With a winless 2021 this keeps Froome in the honorable mentions.
Chris Froome's first race with Israel Start-Up Nation | UAE Tour 2021
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rF1wCo-9hao

(English)


Giacomo Nizzolo
Nizzolo won his first Giro stage this year despite winning the points classification twice. Nizzolo won Clasica de Almeria, stage 13 at the Giro, and Circuito de Getxo while finishing in the top 10 28 times, with 9 podium finishes. This is Nizzolo’s best results since 2016 in placements. Unfortunately it was not enough compared to the other sprinters considering their age and what they came back from which keeps Nizzolo in the honorable
Giro d’Italia 2021 | Stage 13 | Last Km
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvB-mWJairo
(English)

Rigoberto Uran
With reports that Uran missed some of 2021 dealing with having Covid-19 and the lockdown restrictions, Uran had his best season since 2018 and secured his first win since then. Uran won stage 7 of Tour de Suisse, his 3rd overall time trial win and to make his first win in two seasons.
Uran also had his best overall season results since 2018 finishing 2nd overall at Tour de Suisse and 10th overall at Tour de France while finishing 8th in the Olympics Road Race and Time Trial. That is beating several riders such as Evenepoel, Thoman, and Almeida. Uran was just beaten out of the contest but is still a very honorable mention.
Tour de Suisse 2021: Stage 7 Full Highlights
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdhEOLjqn_k

(No commentary)


Alejandro Valverde
Compared to his past success, 2021 was a quiet year for Valverde with only 3 wins. Even still this was a step up compared to 2020 when he won 0. Valverde finished 1st at GP Miguel Indurain for the third time, stage 6 of Criterium du Dauphine, and stage 3 of Giro di Sicilia. This was Valverde’s first World Tour win in France since his 2012 Tour stage win despite finishing second on numerous occasions. Valverde also had better classic success finishing 3rd at La Flèche Wallonne, 4th Liege-Bastogne-Liege, 5th Giro di Lombardia, 5th Amstel Gold Race, 8th GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano, 9th Coppa Ugo Agostoni, and 10th Milano-Torino. He also finished 4th overall at Volta a Catalunya and 7th overall at Tour of the Basque Country. Unfortunately he crashed out of the Vuelta in good shape when he could have won a stage and finished with a high placing. Compared to his past seasons it was a step down but a comeback compared to 2020. Other riders' success this year kept him out of the running and just an honorable mention.
#Dauphiné 2021 - Stage 6 - Highlights: Valverde, 13 years later
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGlMBYl6E9c

(English)


Alexander Vinokourov
Vinokourov was not racing this year but that did not stop him from making a comeback of ages. As we all know, Vino was our beloved General Manager of Astana. Before the start of the Tour de France, he was removed from his duties as General Manager, then in the coups of coups, he returned to his rightful place. Honestly I don’t know much about the story but he had one of the best comebacks this year.

Elia Viviani
Viviani would have a bounce back year winning 7 times in his second Cofidis season with 21 top 10s after not winning in 2020 and having 15 top 10s. He would not win in 2020 after leaving a team that he had the best seasons of his career at. Viviani would win at Cholet-Pays de la Loire, stage 1 and 3 of Adriatico Ionica Race and the points classification, stage 1 and 3 of Tour Poitou, GP de Fourmies, and Grand Prix d' Isbergues. He would have a disappointing Giro finishing in the top 10 on five stages but not being close to winning any of the stages. The riders he also beat were underwhelming being; Jon Aberasturi, Davide Persico, Jakub Mareczko, Simone Consonni,
Timothy Dupont, Pascal Ackermann, and Tim Merlier. His last two wins would be against his most impressive opposition though the other 5 are sprints he should win every time. While yes he did have a bounce back year going from 0 to 7 I think it was a return to normal for him as a sprinter. Before joining Deceuinick-Quick-Step this was the norm for Viviani. With a return to Ineos it might be harder for him to continue the success at big races.
Grand Prix d'Isbergues - Pas de Calais 2021
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meykLqrnCn0

(French)
 
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Egan Bernal started 2021 after an injury to his lower back ended his Tour de France title defense. Bernal ended 2020 with two wins, the overall classification of Route d'Occitanie and stage 3 of the same race. He also left with the points and young rider classification. Compared to previous years, Bernal's performance was lackluster in overall performance being his worst year since 2016 according to PCS. Bernal failed to top 10 any World Tour or one day race. His other results for 2020 included 2nd overall at Tour de l'Ain, 4th overall at Tour Colombia, 2nd at the national road race, and 3rd at the national time trial. Many were questioning Bernal’s overall performance, if he could return from his injury, and if his Grand Tour win was only from a fluke with the stage ending early. Bernal ended 2020 with two wins, the overall classification of Route d'Occitanie and stage 3 of the same race. He also left with the points and young rider classification. Compared to previous years, Bernal's 2020 performance was lackluster in overall performance; being his worst year since 2016 according to PCS. Bernal failed to top 10 any World Tour or one day race. His other results for 2020 included 2nd overall at Tour de l'Ain, 4th overall at Tour Colombia, 2nd at the national road race, and 3rd at the national time trial.

Bernal started 2021 with a disappointing 64th overall at Etoile de Besseges-Tour du Gard finishing 6'04" back from winner Tim Wellens. His best stage finish was 15th on stage 3. Next up on Bernal's program was Tour de la Provence where he finished 3rd overall, 0'19" behind Ivan Sosa. He finished 2nd on stage 2 and the overall Youth Classification. Bernal left France for his next four races being in Italy. He finished 2nd in the group to Bauke Mollema at Trofeo Laigueglia 0'39" back and 3rd in Strade Bianche 0'20" behind Mathieu Van Der Poel three days later. Next up was TIrreno-Adriatico where he finished 4'13" behind Tadej Pogacar, 5th on stage 5, and 2nd overall in the Youth Classification.

2 months later Bernal started the Giro d’ Italia as the main favorite alongside Simon Yates. Bernal would gain the lead on stage 9 and never relinquish it, finishing with a 1'29" advantage over Damiano Caruso. He would go on to win stage 9 and 16 with a 7' and 27' advantage over second place while finishing second twice, third, fourth, and seventh throughout the race to increase his lead. By stage 18 Bernal held a 2'29" lead over Caruso and just had to mark him to win the overall of his second Grand Tour. While not dominating in all ways, Bernal's win was never in doubt with third place Simon Yates 4'15" back and 10th place almost 19" behind. Bernal would also finish second in the King of the Mountains standings. Bernal would equal his countryman Nairo Quintana’s Grand Tour total at two with age on his side to half the most Grand Tour wins in Colombian history.

Bernal would not race for two months dealing with his lower back pain from 2020's crash and testing positive for Covid-19 days after the Giro finished. He would arrive in Spain for his next three races and finish an underwhelming 16th and 38th overall at Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa and Vuelta a Burgos though 4th on stage 5. Bernal would enter the Vuelta a Espana as a favorite alongside his teammates Adam Yates, Richard Carapaz, Mikel Landa, and Hugh Carthy behind main favorite Primoz Roglic. Bernal would maintain a top 10 placing throughout the race while losing time on every stage though he would constantly try attacking with his teammates Carapaz and Yates. On stage 17 he would put in a daring attack 61 km from the finish with only Roglic following him. The two would continuously build a gap over the other favorites though by the end he would be dropped by Roglic and finished with the other contenders. By stage 20 Bernal was sitting 5th overall and in the lead of the Youth classification with what looked like both in the bag until the day started. Bernal would be caught on the wrong side of a GC split from Yates attack while he was following Miguel A Lopez's wheel. They would lose considerable time until MAL climbed off the bike and Bernal dropped to 6th overall and 2nd in the Youth Classification. That is how his Vuelta ended, 5'13" back from the podium and 13'27"
behind Roglic. If Bernal had not stayed on MAL’s wheel he would have finished the race in 3rd overall and with the Youth Classification.

Bernal would end his race here, taking part in 9 races and finishing in the top 10 of 6 of them. Bernal would have his second highest PCS points total. Bernal should continue his form into 2022 competing in stage, one day, and Grand Tour races.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
3Giro d'Italia2.UWT2021-05-30ME
2Giro d'Italia | Stage 162.UWT2021-05-24ME
1Giro d'Italia | Stage 92.UWT2021-05-16ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
202114906610642323
Other top results: 3rd overall Tour de la Provence, 2nd Trofeo Laigueglia, 3rd Strade Bianche, 4th overall Tirreno-Adriatico, 1st Youth Classification Giro d’ Italia, and 6th overall Vuelta a Espana


Egan Bernal I Giro d'Italia 2021 I Best Of
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_oogXcA89w
(music/no commentary)

Giro d’Italia 2021 | Stage 9 | Last Km
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irFH0KmImq0
(English)

Giro d'Italia 2021: Stage 16 Highlights
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vX4Q9MCym9w
(English)
 
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“Manx Missile” Mark Cavendish was looking well past his bests as even a pro continental rider when he signed with Deceuninck-Quick-Step in December of 2020. Many thought not only wins but work as a quality domestique was long behind him. Cavendish would spend 2017 and 2018 dealing with Epstein–Barr virus, multiple crashes and injuries from 2017-2019, physical burnout from his massive 2016 campaign, depression, and a Covid year interfering with his preparation in a make or break year. 2017 and 2018 saw him win once a piece while having 12 top 10s in 2017, 9 in 2018, 6 in 2019, and 0 in 2020. 2020 saw Cavendish's best finish at 12th with every time the sprint started he would go backwards. During this time Cavendish would finish 2nd twice at Six Days of London in 2017 and 2019. Cavendish would also have less track success finishing 2nd twice at Six Days of London in 2017 and 2019. He no longer showed the confidence he had of old or the ability to contend for not just the win but placements. Cavendish would look to help the team, with how little he could and turn into a lead out rider. The once best sprinter in the world relegated to lead out in the same small races he would make fun of in his prime. He would look like a broken man in Gent-Wevelgem believing it to be his final race of his career. Cavendish ended up signing a contract with Deceuninck-Quick-Step in December thanks in part to his former history with the team and staff and bringing along a personal sponsor to help pay his small salary. Which meant he was basically riding for the team for free.

During the winter team camps Cavendish would say he felt new life in his body, felt more energized, and as if a pressure was placed off him. Team directors stated he would work as a domestique and many contend in smaller races if the legs were there while also stating his performance was improving and he looked energized. Cavendish took this chance in stride, just
happy to still be doing his passion. Cavendish's first two races of the year were 2/14 and 3/2 at Clasica de Almeria and Le Samyn in support of his teammates in races too hard for him to contend even in his best years besides the former on a good day. He would enter Grote prijs Jean-Pierre Monsere as leader and finish second to Tim Merlier though was not close to winning, his first second place finish since 2018. Cavendish's next two races he played the role of domestique but had his chance at Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali when he finished second on the first stage to Jakub Mareczko though later that day due to the team time trial he would wear his first leaders jersey of a race since 2017. Cavendish would enter Scheldeprijs ME as a support rider for his teammate Sam Bennett but during the race it looked like his role was either as the main sprinter or sweeper to keep others off Bennett's wheel. Jasper Philipsen would win beating the two teammates but Cavendish would finish an improving third.

Cavendish would enter the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey as the clear leader of his team with 6 potential sprint finishes and yours truly predicting he would win all six. On the first day he finished fourth behind winner Arvid De Kleijn. He would make amends by winning the next three stages in a row using Philipsen's train against him and coming around the opposition in the final 100 meters. Not only did he turn back the clock to win not once but three times over three days but was in the overall lead again. After his first win an emotionally stricken Cavendish was found crying tears of joy while after his third win it was like he never stopped winning. The next two sprint stages saw him finish 4th and 3rd to winner Philipsen. Cavendish will win the final stage for his fourth win of the race, half of the total stages and finish second in the points classification when not competing for the intermediate sprint points. Cavendish and his team would be delighted but most critics thought he could not win in bigger races or against other “top” sprinters. The next two races he would compete in he would DNF, the first one a stage before Andre Greipel won stating there were no further stages he could win. This was met with criticism from his team director and the media. Around this time reports of Bennett potentially missing the Tour de France due to injury lead to belief Cavendish should go, though this was met with much pushback saying he would be unable to win. Cavendish would then finish 2nd in Elfstedenronde to Merlier again and enter the Baloise Belgium Tour with success in the race helping his Tour selection chances. He would answer this with a huge win over Merlier, Ackermann, Groenewegen, Bouhanni, and Ewan. With Bennett out this would give Cavendish the nod to take his place with one of the strongest sprint trains of the last few years at his disposal.

Even with his new found success and a strong team while winning 5 of the twelve sprints he contested with fourth as his worst finish there were many doubters stating he will walk away with zero wins and others would be more useful in the sprint finishes. Cavendish would enter his first Tour since 2018 when he finished well over the time limit with the ability to add to his total and he did not wait long. Winning the first stage he competed in dominantly on stage 4 overcoming a late catch of the breakaway and being nine riders back without his leadout train. Cavendish would go on to win the next 3 sprint stages he competed in, 4 in total and the Green Jersey at the Tour de
France matching Eddy Merckx’s stage record. Unfortunately Cavendish will become boxed in on the final stage and be unable to break the record and win a fifth time in Paris. Even still, Cavendish would have a very successful Tour and double what one of his childhood idols accomplished 11 years before and put him back in the spotlight, just like Petacchi before him.

Cavendish’s success after the Tour was barren, only winning the Sparkassen Munsterland Giro 3 months later. He would only contest in four sprints for the win after his marvelous start to the year and won once, one of which he was hampered by a crash. Cavendish would win 10 times with 20 top 10s competing for the win and a top 10 in a time trial. He would win the most on his team and of all the other sprinters. His team was phenomenal getting him to the final kilometer but was left to his own devices on many occasions. He would use the lead out of others and slipstream around them in the final 100 meters. Despite claims that he won against weak opponents, Cavendish beat every sprinter bar Sam Bennett. Currently he is riding the Six Days of Ghent with Iljo Keisse. They have won one madison and sit 4th overall.

2022 should see him win 4-8 times while being his team's B sprinter sharing with Jakobsen though Fabio getting the nod in higher level races but if he rides the Tour, he can win in the first week. He could also return to the Giro and Vuelta for the first time since 2013 and 2011. As of now he is unsigned with Deceuninck-Quick-Step but all signs point to him returning. If he does not return, it will be easier for him to find a team this offseason versus last.

Wins

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
2021102770113071026
Other top results: 2nd Grote prijs Jean-Pierre Monseré, 3rd Scheldeprijs, 2nd Elfstedenronde, and 1st Points Classification Tour de France

Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey 2021 - Stage 2 Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cl9Y78uiNdk
(English)

Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey 2021 - Stage 3 Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gqgn5Y1izfk
(English)

Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey 2021 - Stage 4 Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1A5RmJJfaDg&t=156s
(English)

Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey 2021 - Stage 8 Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xmP-WJkam8&t=176s
(English)

2021 Baloise Belgium Tour - Stage 5 | Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnNLg3lEPjU&t=85s
(English)

Tour de France 2021: Stage 4 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-4xamI8TEI&t=1326s

(English)
Tour de France 2021: Stage 6 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OyrymTHkdDE&t=1017s

(English)
Tour de France 2021: Stage 10 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4p79_Rivyo&t=2573s
(English)

Tour de France 2021: Stage 13 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9EJgZ0WqKaE&t=2376s
(English)

Sparkassen Münsterland Giro 2021 Highlights | Mark Cavendish bids for victory
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POgEb6DOBk0&t=382s
(English)
 
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Reactions: SafeBet





“Major Tom” Tom Dumoulin had his 2019 season ruined with his crash at the Giro d’ Italia while looking to add to his 2017 title and improving on his 2nd place the year before. His only top results that year were 4th overall at Tirreno-Adriatico and 6th overall at the Uae Tour. Unfortunately Dumoulin would have further issues with his recovery that year as the team wanted him to ride when he should have rested. Dumoulin would leave the team after 8 seasons to join Team Jumbo-Visma. A team that was on the rise with Primoz Roglic and Steven Kruijswijk as leaders with strong riders that could also make a case for a Grand Tour top 10 such as Robert Gesink, Sepp Kuss, and George Bennett.

With the Covid season in 2020 Dumoulin would not race until August. He finished 7th at the Criterium du Dauphine, 2'07" behind Daniel Martinez, and the Tour de France, 7'48’ behind Tadej Pogacar, and 10th at World Championship ITT 1'14" behind Filippo Ganna. Dumoulin would have 7 top 10s and a second in the time trial that Pogacar dominated. With returning from injury and a Covid year he still had a successful year but disappointing compared to his previous success. Dumoulin decided to take an indefinite leave of absence to understand if he still wanted to ride professionally.

In May Dumoulin announced he would return to racing in June to prepare for the Olympics Time Trial. Dumoulin would finish 16th in the first time trial, 0'32" behind Stefan Kung. The final time trial saw him finish 5th 0'56" behind Rigoberto Uran. Dumoulin would then back up his time trial results with first in the National Championship time trial with a 0'27" lead. Dumoulin was considered a favorite behind Wout Van Aert, Primoz Roglic, Remco Evenepoel, Filippo Ganna, Rohan Dennis, and Joao Almeida by betting sites leading up to 7/28. Dumoulin would finish
second besides his trade teammate 1'01" behind. 2 and 4 seconds ahead of 3rd-5th. Dumoulin would enter Benelux Tour and finish 6th in the time trial 23" behind, 8th 42" behind the winner last in the group of 7 on a hilly stage, and 3rd on a rolling stage 15" behind, to finish 9th overall 1'55" behind the winner.

Overall Dumoulin’s 2021 season can be viewed as a success. He came off not riding for 7 months while still recovering from injury and personal issues. His 2022 depends if he will continue to ride since unfortunately he had another crash in September when he was struck by a motorist. If he does ride, Dumoulin should be able to contend in the time trials while supporting Roglic and Vingegaard in the Grand Tours. If his former form returns he can even compete in stage races and potentially a Grand Tour.

NrRaceClassDateCategory
1st
2nd
National Championships Netherlands - ITT
Olympic Games -ITT (Olympics)
NC
Oly
2021-6-16
2021-7-28
ME
ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
202137319252217
Other top results: 9th overall Benelux Tour


REACTION: Tom Dumoulin Returns To Race For Olympic Gold Medal
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qm1rkJuEGfg
(English)
 
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“Aerobullet” Remco Evenepoel was already considered one of cycling's greatest up and coming talents when he signed with Deceuninck - Quick-Step in July of 2018 at the age of 18. After his 2018 junior season winning 23 times and 9 secondary classifications; 5 of them overall wins, 3 one day races, and the road race and time trial of the Nationals, UCI Road Worlds, and European Road Championships. In 2019 he would win 5 times including European Road time trial championships, overall of Tour of Belgium, and Clasica de San Sebastian with 2 secondary classifications. 2020 was going even better for Evenepoel winning 9 times with the overall classifications at Volta ao Algarve, Tour de Pologne, Vuelta a Burgos, and Vuelta a San Juan with 3 secondary classifications. Before the start of Il Lombardia and Giro d' Italia Evenepoel was considered one of the favorites for the win. During Il Lombardia he crashed into a wall, fracturing his pelvis and a contusion in his lung.

Evenepoel would enter 2021 with questions on his ability to recover from the crash. He would not race for 9 months until May at the Giro d' Italia and was considered a favorite. He would finish 7th in the first stage time trial 0'19" behind the winner Fillipo Ganna. He would also finish 4th on stage 6 and 9 within 12 seconds of the winner. By the end of stage 15 Evenepoel was sitting 7th 3'52" but the next day lost over 24 minutes to Bernal. During stage 17 Evenepoel would crash and be unable to continue. Evenepoel looked to win his first National championship at the time trial and road race but finished 2nd and 3rd. Between these races he won overall at the Baloise Belgium Tour and 1 stage. Evenepoel was a favorite for the Olympics time trial but would only manage 9th, 2'17" behind Roglic. In his first 3 months back from injury, Evenepoel competed in 7 races; winning twice and finishing inside the top 10 on 7 other times.

Evenepoel would race the next 3 months of the season competing in 12 races. He would return to racing at the Tour of Denmark and win stage 3 and 5 while winning the overall and youth classification. To finish the month of August he would race and win Druivenkoers-Overijse and Brussels Cycling Classic. Next up was the Benelux Tour where he did not start stage 5 or finish inside the top 10 on any stage. Evenepoel would enter the European Championships as the favorite though finish 3rd and 2nd in heartbreak. He would breakaway from the group of 9 with Colbrelli and Cosnefroy though was unable to drop the Italian and lose to him in a sprint. He would enter the World Championship time trial as one of the favorites though finish 3rd. At the Road Race he rode as a domestique for Wout Van Aert though there was much controversy in the way the team and he rode with Van Aert not living up to the billing. Evenepoel would then support his teammate Joao Almedia to a second place at Giro dell'Emilia while he finished 5th. He would win two days later at Coppa Bernocchi and enter Il Lombardia as a favorite though finish 19th. Evenepoel would close the year with 5th at Chrono des Nations. Evenepoel would win 6 times with an overall and secondary classification with 5 other top 10s.

Evenepoel would have a good season returning from injury though, leaving some disappointed with his success in the bigger races. He should continue to win as he has done before while hoping to perform at a Grand Tour and winning the Championships instead of finishing as the bridesmaid. The future is bright for the young Belgium as long as he is able to avoid injury.

Wins:

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
20211172477505819
Other top results: 2nd National Championships ITT, 3rd National Championships RR, 9th Olympic ITT, 3rd European Continental Championships ITT, 2nd European Continental Championships RR, 3rd World Championships ITT, and 5th Giro dell'Emilia


2021 Baloise Belgium Tour - Stage 2 | Highlights | Cycling | Eurosport
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d--QaUXvJOQ

(English)
Tour Denmark 2021 - Stage 3 Etapa 3 (Eurosport Pt) Remco Evenepoel show
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rLEmSwVA3o
(Belgium)

Tour Denmark 2021 - Stage 5 Etapa 5 Time Trial (Eurosport Pt) Remco Evenepoel
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgDNC-gxvvc
(Belgium)

Druivenkoers Overijse 2021
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVbVt49_yQU
(not sure the language)

Brussels Cycling Classic (1.Pro)
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xc0r4LzHPIs

(English)
Coppa Bernocchi - GP BPM 2021 [ FULL RACE ] Legnano-Legnano : 197.15km
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uT3nRqR4y_w
(English)
 
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“The Gorilla” Andre Greipel has had a prolific career with 156 victories before this year earning the spot of the second greatest sprinter of his generation. By 2017, he would have 5 wins which was the lowest of his career since 2007. 2018 saw an increase at 8 wins but still less than double digits and 2019 saw him raise his arms only 1 time. 2020 brought even less with 0 wins and only finishing inside the top 10 4 times. His season would be hampered due to Covid and crashing in February fracturing his shoulder. The once powerful sprinter had seen others become faster as he became a domestique.

Greipel entered the 2021 season with his career in doubt though with the support of Israel-Startup Nation. He would start off with 9 top 10s in the three stage races he competed in and supported his leaders in the 5 one day races from February to May. Greipel would win his first race since 1/26/2019 at Trofeo Alcudia beating Alexander Kristoff to the line. He would win again in his next race at Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol. Greipel had an uneventful Tour de Suisse with his best finish being 70th while supporting Michael Woods to his 5th overall place in the standing. He would enter the Tour de France looking to add to his 14 stage total and his first since 2016 with some support from the team. Greipel would finish inside the top 10 5 times but was nowhere near victory and announced his retirement at the end of the year. He would enter his homeland tour and finish 3rd on stage 3 being the best out of the peloton behind the break. Next on his program was the Tour of Britain and he finished second on the stage behind Wout Van Aert and ahead of his long time rival and friend Mark Cavendish. Greipel would return to Germany to finish his season and career, DNFing Eschborn-Frankfurt and finishing 10th at Sparkassen Munsterland Giro.

Greipel would have a good year coming back from injury and difficulty the year before to win twice in the twilight of his career. Unfortunately we will not see him ride anymore but he may join a team as a coach. Greipel ended his career better than some being able to win again.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
2Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol | Stage 42.Pro2021-05-21ME
1Trofeo Alcudia-Port d'Alcudia1.12021-05-16ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
20213887711964220

Other top results: 10th Sparkassen Munsterland Giro

Trofeo Alcudia Port d'Alcudia 2021 Won by Andre Greipel
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVJuBF7Jc-0

(Spanish)
vuelta a andalucia ruta ciclista del sol 2021 stage 4 | Etapa 4
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jyv1vSJczA
(Spanish)
 
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Dylan Groenewegen has been one of the World’s leading sprinters the last few years with 53 wins by the start of the 2021 season in 6 seasons. His 2020 season would start with success winning 3 of the 5 sprints he contested in and a points classification at the beginning of the year. His chances for wins were cut short because of Covid and he did not race again for 6 months. Groenewegen would start the Tour de Pologne as Team Jumbo-Visma's leader. Unfortunately tragedy would strike on the first stage when he rode Fabio Jakobsen into the barrier causing a massive crash. Jakobsen would be severely injured while Groenewegen would break his collarbone, be disqualified from the race, and fined CHF500. In November he would be suspended for 9 months from August 5th till May 7th.

Groenewegen's first race back from suspension of the year was at the Giro d' Italia. He was considered one of the favorites for stages with Caleb Ewan, Tim Merlier, Peter Sagan, Giacomo Nizzolo, Elia Viviani, and Fernado Gaviria. His best finish was 4th on stage 2, finishing 8th, 7th, and 10th in three other stages before he withdrew on stage 14. Groenewegen would enter Belgium and ride Elfstedenronde and Baloise Belgium Tour as his team's leader again though could only finish 10th in the former and 4th on the final stage. He would ride the National Championships in support of his teammates with Timo Roosen winning with Mike Teunissen and Olav Kooij finishing inside the top 10.

Next up on his program was Tour de Wallonie a month later with this being the first time he would race alongside Fabio Jakobsen. He would win stage 1 and 4 with dominant sprints and good leadouts from his team while winning the points classification. During the race he and Jakobsen would not sprint against the other though both would finish with the same points total but Groenewegen was minutes ahead on GC. It was his first win in a year and 3 months. Groenewegen would race Heylen Vastgoed Heistse Pijl next with his teammate Pascal Eenkhoorn winning while he finished 21st. He would then head to Tour of Denmark winning the first stage with a perfect leadout from Teunissen over Cavendish and finish 3rd on stage 2.

Groenewegen would finish the season competing in 7 other races with 9th on stage 4 of Benelux Tour, 2nd at Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen. 9th Binche-Chimay-Binche, and 3rd at Ronde van Drenthe where he finished his season. Compared to previous success this season was sparse for victories with his only worst seasons being 2020 and 2015 with 3 and 2 wins. In 2020 he only competed in two races fully because of Covid and his crash and suspension while 2015 was his first season. This had bigger stakes in that he had not raced for a year and 3 months when he returned at the Giro d’ Italia while coming back from injury. It takes time to return to race shape. The next few years should bring more success to him while he might look at a team change with the overall leaders of Roglic, Vingegaard, and potentially Dumoulin and Wout Van Aert becoming more of a sprint threat. Next year will most likely see him ride the Giro or Vuelta with Team Jumbo-Visma going all in at the Tour with Roglic, Vingegaard, and Van Aert.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
3PostNord Danmark Rundt - Tour of Denmark | Stage 12.Pro2021-08-10ME
2Tour de Wallonie | Stage 42.Pro2021-07-23ME
1Tour de Wallonie | Stage 12.Pro2021-07-20ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
2021254437001313
Other top results: 10th Elfstedenronde, 1st Points Classification Tour de Wallonie, 2nd Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen, and 9th Binche-Chimay-Binche


Tour de Wallonie 2021 - Etape 1
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ASvlI3WZNw

(Spanish?)
Dylan Groenewegen strikes again @ stage 4 Tour de Wallonie 2021

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBZJGnifuzA
(Not sure the language)

2021 PostNord Danmark Rundt - Tour of Denmark stage 1
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKV-oQrfF8c
(Music no commentary)
 
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Fabio Jakobsen signed with Deceuninck–Quick-Step in 2018 as one of their promising young sprinters. He would share the role as the teams C sprinter with Alvaro Hodeg behind Fernado Gaviria and Elia Viviani. During that season Jakobsen would win 7 times in addition to a points classification, 2 more than Hodeg. He would have the fourth most wins on the team behind Viviani’s 18, Alaphilippe's 12, and Gaviria's 9. With the departure of Gaviria during the offseason Jakobsen would be promoted to the team's B sprinter over Hodeg. They would finish the season with 7 wins but Jakobsen was given the nod at the higher rated races even winning two stages at the Vuelta a Espana. They would finish the season tied for third in team wind behind Alaphilippe's 12 and Viviani's 11.

Jakobsen would look to move up the ranks of the sprinters and be regarded as one of the best in 2020. He would start off the year with three wins before Covid shut down the season and return with a win when racing started. He would enter four races and win three times while finishing fourth at Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne. Unfortunately tragedy would strike at the Tour de Pologne during the end of the first stage. Groenewegen would veer from his line colliding into Jakobsen and causing a massive crash. Jakobsen would crash through the barriers and collide with a race official. He would be taken to the hospital with complications from a brain contusion, skull fracture, broken nose, torn palate, the loss of 10 teeth, and loss of parts of his upper and lower jaw. He would remain in an induced coma for 2 days before being taken out of it and starting his recovery process. It would be three months before he could ride his bike again and he slowly started training to regain his shape and form. He would end the year with 4 wins after being rewarded the stage win at the Tour de Pologne, the third most on the team behind Evenepoel's 9 and Bennett's 7.

Jakobsen would enter the 2021 season just looking to recover from the crash and regain his race shape, confidence, and condition. He would continue building up his condition until he started the first race of the season at the Tour of Turkey. Jakobsen would ride in support of Mark Cavendish while being in the peloton for the first time in 8 months. He would have an uneventful race while avoiding complications with his best stage finish being 39. Next up on his program was Voltaao Algarve, Criterium du Dauphine, and the National Championship road race finishing 123rd, 86th, and 29th in his best finishes. Next was Tour de Wallonie as the team's lead sprinter and his first race alongside Groenewegen. He would be unable to contest the first stage finishing 21st. The next day he would win the stage by half a bike length giving him a huge victory and boost in confidence. This would be his first official win not counting Tour de Pologne in 16 months. He would not contest the next 2 stages but won the final stage with a dominant performance winning by bike lengths. Jakobsen would finish the race tied for points with Groenewegen but finish second due to his GC placing.

Next up was Heylen Vastgoed Helste Pijl but DNFed before lining up at the Vuelta a Espana leading the team. On the first sprint stage he would finish second to Jasper Philipsen. He would win the next sprint stage with a dominant win and proceed to finish second to Philipsen again and win the next two sprint stages. With Philipsen withdrawing, Jakobsen easily won stage 16 and secured the points classification. Marking his first points classification and return to form adding to his 2 previous Vuelta stage wins. Jakobsen would ride four more races to finish his season with Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen 34th, Gooikse Pijl 1st, Eurometropole Tour 1st, and Binche-Chimay-Binche DNF.Jakobsen would finish the year with 7 wins, tied for third on the team with Bennett behind Cavendish's 10 and Evenepoel's 8.

Jakobsen should continue to build on his success into 2022 and the future. He is now the lead sprinter at Deceuinick-Quick-Step with Cavendish being older and still not re-signed with the team. He has already been said by Patrick Lefevere to be the leader of the team at the 2022 Tour de France. Jakobsen will be the lead sprinter at the majority of the big races next year if Cavendish returns and should win 10 times for the first time in his career.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
7Eurométropole Tour1.Pro2021-09-29ME
6Gooikse Pijl1.12021-09-19ME
5La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 162.UWT2021-08-31ME
4La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 82.UWT2021-08-21ME
3La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 42.UWT2021-08-17ME
2Tour de Wallonie | Stage 52.Pro2021-07-24ME
1Tour de Wallonie | Stage 22.Pro2021-07-21ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
202162053838879
Other top results: 1st Points Classification Vuelta a Espana


Fabio Jakobsen first victory after horror crash (stage 2 Tour de Wallonie 2021 )
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8Ywn6Aozvc

(No commentary/music)
Tour de Wallonie 2021 ,etappe 5 ,Dinant - Quaregnon
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYKo-besa8c

(No commentary)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 4 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAvcKCoMA6o&t=561s

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 8 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6uUOhb6NoU

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 16 Extended Highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1c1V0sW91j0

(English)
Gooikse Pijl 2021 [ FULL RACE ]
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=82DYcbg4jKg

(No commentary)
Tour de l’Eurométropole 2021 LAST 10 KM
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3WGX-JzLKk

(English)
 
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“The Great “ Bauke Mollema has had a good career with the amount of hype he had winning a monument with multiple classic wins, GT stage victories, GT and stage race top 10s and the Points Classification at the Vuelta. Since becoming professional in 2008, Mollema has finished inside the top 10 eighty times in GTs, monuments, stage races, and one day races for a 6.7 a season average. Six being in GTs, 11 in WT stage races, 6 in monuments, and 23 in WT one day races for a season average of 46. From 2013-2019 he would have at least 1 win a season, averaging 2.3 per season. Mollema always had consistent seasons with a couple wins.

This was true with his 2019 season winning Giro di Lombardia and Japan Cap with 3rd at Trofeo Campos and Trofeo Andratx-Lloseta, 4th at Giro dell'Emilia and overall Etoile de Besseges, 5th overall at Giro d' Italia and Clasica de San Sebastian and Gran Premio Bruno Beghelli, 6th La Fleche Wallonne, 7th Milano-Torino, and 10th at the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montreal. 2020 hoped to be the same for Mollema and started with an 8th overall at Volta ao Algarve em Bicicleta with 2 top 10 stage finishes. The next two races he competed in he DNFed at Faune-Ardeche Classic and Royal Bernard Drome Classic. His season was put on hold until August 1st due to Covid when he lined up at La Route d'Occitanie and finished 5th overall with 2 stage top 10s. and started with an 8th overall at Volta ao Algarve em Bicicleta with 2 top 10 stage finishes. The next two races he competed in he DNFed at Faune-Ardeche Classic and Royal Bernard Drome Classic. His season was put on hold until August 1st due to Covid when he lined up at La Route d'Occitanie and finished 5th overall with 2 stage top 10s. Then he immediately went to Tour de L'Ain in which he finished 9th with one stage top 10. Mollema would compete in Italy for the first time this year at Il Lombardia with his teammates Vincenzo Nibali and Giulio Ciccone in which he would finish 4th and they would finish 6th and 5th. He would then enter the Tour de France as his team's leader while finishing 6th on 3 stages. By stage 12 he would be sitting 13th 2'31" behind Primoz Roglic but crashed and DNF the following stage. Despite being a short season it was still disappointing to his usual standard and that age might be catching up to him considering he started racing so young.

Mollema would start his 2021 season in France showing he still has what it takes to compete at the top level. He raced at Etoile de Bessèges, Tour de La Provence, and Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var. At Etolle he would finish a disappointing 65th with his best finish being 16th in the time trial. At Provence he would finish 6th overall with 2 stage top 10s. At Alpes Maritimes he would win for the first time in 16 months winning the first stage. Mollema would then finish 2nd and 8th the following two stages and finish 3rd overall while winning the points classification. Next Mollema would head to Italy to compete in Trofeo Laigueglia, Strade Bianche, and GP Industria & Artigianato. At Trofeo he would take victory with a 0'39" lead over the second group. At Strade Bianche he would finish 18th but at Artigianato he would finish second in a sprint with Mauri Vansevenant, Mikel Landa, and Nairo Quintana. Next up was Spain where he raced and finished 7th at Gran Premio Miguel Indurain and DNFed at Itzulia Basque Country. Mollema would be the leader at the Ardennes Classics and finish 64th, 11th, and 8th. This would mark the third time he only finished in the top 10 of one classic when racing all three. Next Mollema would support Nibali at the Giro d' Italia. He would finish inside the top 10 twice with a 5th and 7th in back to back stages from the breakaway.

Mollema would enter the Tour de France as one of the leaders with Nibali though would focus on winning from a breakaway. The first two stages he would finish 9th and 6th with the hilly finishes. Stage 11 would see him go into the breakaway and finish 3rd on the double Mont Ventoux climb with his teammate Kenny Elissonde when they were unable to bring back Wout Van Aert. On stage 14 he would again enter the breakaway and this time win with a solo attack from the 42 kilometer mark finishing with a minute lead. Next up was the Olympic Road Race and he would finish 4th in the sprint for second in the group. He would then finish 10th at San Sebastian. Mollema would compete in the European and Worlds Mixed Relay TTT in events he was on the winning team in 2019 and finish 3rd and 2nd. Mollema would finish his year in Italy finishing; 7th at Giro dell'Emilia, DNF Tre Valli Varesine, 21st Milano-Torino, and 20th Il Lombardia.

Mollema would have a bounce back year in 2021 and finish with the fourth most PCS points in his career. He will look to continue that success into 2022 and should finish in the top 10 of the one day races and smaller stage races. It might be too hard for him to have another GT or WT stage race top 10 as his last was 2019 and 2018 though if all goes right he can accomplish that as well. Though he will most likely still go for breakaway wins at the GTs and could compete for the King of the Mountains.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
3Tour de France | Stage 142.UWT2021-07-10ME
2Trofeo Laigueglia1.Pro2021-03-03ME
1Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var | Stage 12.12021-02-19ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
202111908213245323
Other top results: 6th overall Tour de la Provence, 3rd overall Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var, 1st Points Classification Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var, 2nd GP Industria & Artigianato, 7th Gran Premio Miguel Indurain, 8th Liege-Bastogne-Liege, 4th Olympic Games RR, and 7th Giro deli' Emilia


Bauke Mollema - Interview at the finish - Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var Stage 1
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xjSTyL4MKY


Trofeo Laigueglia 2021 • Highlights
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z5HaEgriy8I

(Commentary, not sure language)
Tour de France 2021: Stage 14 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMwfKZv8cg0&t=62s
(English)
 
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“Rogla” Primoz Roglic since joining Team Jumbo-Visma in 2016 has exploded onto the cycling scene. Before 2021 he had won a stage in every GT he has entered. 2016 and 2017 were his years getting used to cycling and he still won 8 times while finishing in the top 10 of stage races and TT competitions. By 2018 Roglic would be in full swing winning and from 2018-2020 he would win 35 times. During this timeframe Roglic would win; two Vuelta a Espana and points classification, 11 GT stages. Tour de Romandie and Tour of the Basque Country twice, Tirreno-Adriatico, UAE Tour, Volta ao Algarve, National Road Race, National Time Trial, Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Giro dell'Emilia, and Tre Valli Varesine. He would compete in 16 stage races and win at least one stage in 12 of them. Roglic would also finish first at the end of the 2019 and 2020 UCI Europe Tour and UCI World Ranking while winning Velo d'Or in 2020. It is remarkable to say 2021 was a comeback year for Roglic but he was doubted not once but twice during the year. In 2019 and 2020 he would have the second most wins.

During the offseason Roglic would receive criticism of losing the Tour de France to Tadej Pogacar by being dominated in the final time trial when he and his team were in firm control the whole race. This stigma did not end when he won his second Vuelta as many said that is the only GT he can win. Especially with him getting older and Pogacar, Bernal, Carapaz and others on the rise. Roglic looked to put those thoughts to rest this year by being on the top step come Paris.

Roglic would be tied for first with the most wins on the year with Van Aert and Pogacar with 13 though have 7 second places and 3 third places, more than them.Roglic would start 2021 at Paris-Nice winning 3 stages and finishing 3rd in another with the points classification though end up a disappointing 15th after issues on stage 5. This would add fuel to the fire of his doubters with them stating Pogacar got to him last year. Next he would compete in Itzulia Basque Country and win a stage, the overall, and Points and King of the Mountains classification. Roglic would finish 1st, 6th, 2nd, 14th, 7th, and 2nd while finishing with a 1'07" lead over Pogacar. Roglic would then do the Ardennes Classics finishing 69th, 2nd, and 13th being unable to defend his Liege-Bastogne-Liege title. Roglic would enter the Tour de France as the main co-favorite with Pogacar. All started fine with him finishing 3rd on the first two stages and being a second behind Pogacar. Unfortunately tragedy would strike with a fan taking out Roglic and most of his team with a sign. He would be badly injured and start to lose time on every stage bar 4 and 6 to Pogacar. By the end of stage 8, Roglic would sit at 51st 39'41" behind Pogacar and not start the following stage.

Roglic would announce that he would ride the Olympic Road Race as co leader with Pogacar and the Time Trial. This came with much backlash with many stating he will not be competitive or helpful in the Road Race and Pogacar or Tratnik are better options. Even still Roglic was second on betting odds for the time trial. He would finish 28th in the road race, adding fuel to the fire for his selection in the time trial. Roglic would dominate it, winning with over a minute advantage to second and almost going a whole kph faster. This was a huge victory for Roglic and showed he is still a favorite in the time trials despite his final 2020 Tour one.

Roglic would next compete at the Vuelta a Espana for the third year and win the first time trial. During the first week Enric Mas and Miguel Lopez with Movistar and Egan Bernal and Adam Yates would push Roglic with multiple attacks every stage they could. Roglic would finish 7th on stage 3 and second twice on stages 6 and 9. He would then win stage 11 beating Mas in the sprint to the line. By stage 16 Mas would sit 0'35" behind Roglic. Most at this point picked him as the favorite though some thought Mas could gain enough time over the mountains and Roglic performed badly again in the final time trial. This would blow up on stage 17 with Bernal attacking with 61 km to go and Roglic riding with him. They would soon ride together and Roglic set a blistering pace that dropped the Colombian for him to win his third stage. Roglic would then finish second on stage 18 and 20 not committing all of his energy when he could have potentially won those stages as well. He would win his fourth stage in the final time trial finishing the Vuelta with his third overall win and second in the Points and third in the King of the Mountains competitions. With more aggressive riding he could have won those as well. Roglic would close out his season with the Worlds Road Race, Giro dell'Emilia, Milano-Torino, and Il Lombardia finishing 48th, 1st, 1st, and 4th ending his season.

Roglic would have a highly successful 2021 season and finish the year with 13 wins, tied for first with Pogacar and Van Aert though he would have more second places. He would show that he is still on top of the cycling world with Pogacar and to continue that success into 2022 and be one of the top cyclists. Roglic should still have this kind of success for the next couple years and with a strong team though Van Aert, Groenewegen, and Vingegaard looking for their own glory.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
13Milano - Torino1.Pro2021-10-06ME
12Giro dell'Emilia1.Pro2021-10-02ME
11La Vuelta ciclista a España2.UWT2021-09-05ME
10La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 21 (ITT)2.UWT2021-09-05ME
9La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 172.UWT2021-09-01ME
8La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 112.UWT2021-08-25ME
7La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 1 (ITT)2.UWT2021-08-14ME
6Olympic Games - ITTOlympics2021-07-28ME
5Itzulia Basque Country2.UWT2021-04-10ME
4Itzulia Basque Country | Stage 1 (ITT)2.UWT2021-04-05ME
3Paris-Nice | Stage 72.UWT2021-03-13ME
2Paris-Nice | Stage 62.UWT2021-03-12ME
1Paris-Nice | Stage 42.UWT2021-03-10ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
202125345386741328
Other top results: 1st Points Classification Paris-Nice, 1st Points Classification Itzulia Basque Country, 1st Mountains Classification Itzulia Basque Country, 2nd La Fleche Wallonne, and 4th Il Lombardia


Paris-Nice 2021 Stage 4 | EXTENDED HIGHLIGHTS | NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbw8rZSEx8Y

(English)
#ParisNice2021 - Stage 6 - Brignoles / Biot - Roglic reigns on all terrains
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uK1tO5jwZOE

(English)
Paris-Nice 2021 Stage 7 | EXTENDED HIGHLIGHTS | NBC Sports youtube.com/watch?v=_8oxBHo4RYE (English)
Itzulia Basque Country Stage 1 2021 | Lanterne Rouge Cycling Podcast x Le Col Recap
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfJ2xQugq1M

(English)
Primoz Roglic follows Tour de France heartbreak with time trial gold | Tokyo Olympics | NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5428Z3hXBac

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 1 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QjilwSdHMsv

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 11 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qV0RYvqQG0s

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 17 Extended Highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVT_ZCDjCTA

(English)
Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 21 Extended Highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKnHhNyGR20

(English)
Giro dell'Emilia 2021 | Final 10km | Roglic DUSTS everyone
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRT8VQ4WgAM

(Italian)
Milano-Torino 2021 | Highlights | inCycle
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4MpmdYVIqOg
(English)
 
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“Vader” Rein Taaramäe has had a turbulent career since he started riding in 2008. In the first seasons he showed a lot of promise that some thought could turn into Grand Tour and big stage race success. From 2008-2016 he would win and/or top 10 multiple stage races. His last good season was in 2016 and his last wins outside of the National Championships. At the 2011 Vuelta a Espana and 2016 Giro d’ Italia Taaramäe would win a stage from breaking away, being the strongest in the break, and holding onto his lead.

2017 saw Taaramäe's first winless season and his last year with Team Katusha since 2010 when he finished 3rd overall at Volta a Catalunya, 7th overall at Paris-Nice, 9th overall at Route du Sud, and 9th at Trofeo Inca. Taaramäe's would finish 3rd at the National Road Race and 9th overall at the Tour of Guangxi. 2018 saw more overall success but still no wins with 2nd at Coppa Ugo Agostoni and Tour du Gévaudan Occitanie, 3rd at Tour du Doubs, and 4th at Famenne Ardenne Classic, while finishing 3rd overall at the Vuelta a Aragon and Tour de l'Ain. 2019 he won the National Championship Road Race then finished 3rd at Mont Ventoux Denivele Challenge, 2nd overall at Tour du Rwanda, and 3rd overall at Tour de l'Ain and Vuelta a Aragon again. In 2020 Taaramäe saw his only success winning the mountain classification at the Tour du Rwanda.

2021 was a new year on a new team but was still the same Taaramäe as 2020, racing in 6 stage races including the Giro d' Italia and 1 one day race. His best stage race finish was 29th at Tour du Gard and at the one day race he finished 21st. Taaramäe would finish 9th on stage 4 at the Giro through a break, 1'33" behind winner Joe Dombrowski but his best stage finish besides that was 17th. After the Giro finished Taaramäe would win the National Time Trial for his 5th time, 0'43" ahead of second and 1'54" ahead of third. He entered the Sazka Tour and finished 3rd overall, 0'40" behind Filippo Zana and finished 47th, 3rd, 3rd, and 10th on the four stages. Taaramäe entered the Vuelta a Espana in better shape and won stage 3 by 21" over second. Taaramäe would wear the leader's jersey during stages 3 and 4 before his crash and the mountains classification from stages 3-6. This marked the first time he ever wore a Grand Tour jersey and he had two of them. Taaramäe would finish the Vuelta supporting Christian Odd Eiking top finish inside the top 10 but he would fall short at 11th after crashes of his own. Taaramäe. would race 5 one day races to end his year with his best finishes being 12th at Chrono des Nations and 14th at Milano-Torino.

2021 was a good year for Taaramäe with his first win besides the 2019 Nationals since 2016 and his last Grand Tour stage win. For next year he will look to continue his breakaway success.

Wins
NrRaceClassDateCategory
2La Vuelta ciclista a España | Stage 32.UWT2021-08-16ME
1National Championships Estonia - ITTNC2021-06-17ME

SeasonPointsRacedaysKMsWinsTop-10s
2021244841282827
Other top results: 3rd overall Sazka Tour


Vuelta a España 2021: Stage 3 extended highlights | Cycling on NBC Sports
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsFeX3ZDPdY

(English)
 
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Is it possible to make a poll in this magnificent thread?

I'm voting Vino as the ultimate pantomime villain.
It was supposed to come with one. It must have got deleted when I originally was trying to post it since I had the poll, Bartali, and LeMond all on the OG post. It is supposed to be:
Egan Bernal, Mark Cavendish, Tom Dumoulin, Remco Evenepoel, Andre Greipel, Dylan Groenewegen, Fabio Jakobsen, Bauke Mollema, Primoz Roglic, and Rein Taaramäe
as the options with open viewing on who selected what and the poll ending 1/1/2022 if a mod is able to add it.

I'm still trying to get these last pictures up. o_O but it is free game.

Took 6 hours trying to post everything and finally done. "sigh of relief" and I might have frozen my laptop trying to load this first page....
 
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This thread feels like it should be a Full formal dress, Black Tie Event. I will check to find a Tuxedo rental so I can sit in front laptop and make my Vote.

Great Job with this Thread. :p:cocktail::wineglass:
Good thing I put pants on before starting to post.



Though every one of the 10 contestants is supposed to have 4 pictures. Maybe it was too much. As the host I will refrain from voting to not sway opinion as all 10 had marvelous comebacks but I think one will win easily.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
No love for the Prof? From retiring from the pro ranks to Olympic gold, as 2021 comebacks go it's quite a story.

After all, CyclistAbi would tell you that Rogla at País Vasco wasn't even a comeback because it was a deliberate tactical masterstroke by Jumbo to go from a winning position to a losing one.

 
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Totally amazing work. Thank you, thank you. :hearteyes: This isn't a thread, though, it's a digital media enhanced book made of posts. :grinning:

Now, enough of the niceties. There are some serious things wrong with what you've done. :rage:
One: it's almost impossible to load it over my phone, and even on my laptop it does not exactly work smoothly...
Second, more importantly: Where can I vote for Hodeg? :mad:

Anyway, it's clear who the winner should be. There was no need to make such an extensive thread, Fabio Jakobsen's comeback can't be beaten. :p:p

Dear, mods, please include the poll.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY