Best Grand Tour of the year

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Best Grand Tour of the year

  • Tour

    Votes: 9 8.3%
  • Giro

    Votes: 56 51.4%
  • Vuelta

    Votes: 44 40.4%

  • Total voters
    109
  • Poll closed .
Re:

Cookster15 said:
Ah, at long last it took some prodding but we finally got there. No Kruijswijk would not have beaten Froome/Quintana in the Vuelta, let alone "easily".

Quintana was stronger in the Vuelta than he was in the Tour as was obvious in Camperona and Cavadonga. Froome showed no evidence he was appreciably weaker in the Vuelta than in the Tour which he won easily.

The Giro may or may not have been a better race but Vuelta competition was tougher than in the Giro and by that measure so Chaves was better in the Vuelta than he was in May.
Camperona showed that Quintana was as good as Froome 2014, which means quite a bit below Tour level. Covadonga was excellent, but Scarponi and a Valverde who had done 3 GTs was just 30 seconds down on him. Looking at the watts that were put out in the Tour, I very much doubt that Quintana matched those.

It also makes no logical sense that someone is stronger in their second GT, unless they used their first as high-quality training, something that Quintana didn't do. Same with Chaves and the Giro. Surely you accept that.

I may be biased, but I think that Italy is more beautiful than France.
 
Re: Re:

Brullnux said:
Cookster15 said:
Ah, at long last it took some prodding but we finally got there. No Kruijswijk would not have beaten Froome/Quintana in the Vuelta, let alone "easily".

Quintana was stronger in the Vuelta than he was in the Tour as was obvious in Camperona and Cavadonga. Froome showed no evidence he was appreciably weaker in the Vuelta than in the Tour which he won easily.

The Giro may or may not have been a better race but Vuelta competition was tougher than in the Giro and by that measure so Chaves was better in the Vuelta than he was in May.
Camperona showed that Quintana was as good as Froome 2014, which means quite a bit below Tour level. Covadonga was excellent, but Scarponi and a Valverde who had done 3 GTs was just 30 seconds down on him. Looking at the watts that were put out in the Tour, I very much doubt that Quintana matched those.

It also makes no logical sense that someone is stronger in their second GT, unless they used their first as high-quality training, something that Quintana didn't do. Same with Chaves and the Giro. Surely you accept that.
Define "strong"? In my opinion "strong" is when you can still be competitive in the 3rd week of a grand Tour, at end of a stage or race rather than the beginning or remain competitive in your 2nd or 3rd GT of a season. Strong is not how many watts you generate in September versus May or July, If you make the same watts in your second GT of the season, then that makes you stronger.

I accept that Chaves could have been making more watts in the Giro because he was fresher but he was stronger in September, look where he finished relative to Froome and Quintana - not a weaker Nibali in the Giro. I think we can also accept Quintana was a little below par at the Tour for whatever reasons. Quintana never showed Camperona or Cavadonga form in the Tour - he just held on while others dropped away. That Chaves was close to Quintana tells me he was stronger than he was at Giro, and the top 3 of Quintana, Froome and Chaves at the Vuelta were at combined higher level than Nibali, Cheves and Valverde in the Giro.

Yes, the top half of the Vuelta GC was a higher level of competition than was the top half of the Giro GC.
 
Re: Re:

Brullnux said:
Cookster15 said:
Ah, at long last it took some prodding but we finally got there. No Kruijswijk would not have beaten Froome/Quintana in the Vuelta, let alone "easily".

Quintana was stronger in the Vuelta than he was in the Tour as was obvious in Camperona and Cavadonga. Froome showed no evidence he was appreciably weaker in the Vuelta than in the Tour which he won easily.

The Giro may or may not have been a better race but Vuelta competition was tougher than in the Giro and by that measure so Chaves was better in the Vuelta than he was in May.
I may be biased, but I think that Italy is more beautiful than France.
I agree with this bit. But I think many (mostly women?) might prefer the colour and usually good weather of France to the sometimes dour mountains of Italy in May. Unfortunately for us cycling fans France more often looks better on TV to non cycling fans so I can't see it moving from July prime spot.
 
Re: Re:

42x16ss said:
El Pistolero said:
dastott said:
Valv.Piti said:
The top end level was clearly better in La Vuelta, but the depth after Kruiswijk and Lopez crashed out was probably slightly worse. It also makes it look bad that Konig fell asleep, Valverde lost 10 minutes one day and Sanchez crashed and therefore fell out of top-10. It could have looked much better.
This. Froome, Quintana and Contador are the three best GT riders. OK, Chaves pushed Contador into 4th place but Contador enlivened the race majorly and was weakened by a crash. The Vuelta had a much stronger field for GC than the Giro, and has had for a few years now.
Stronger on paper perhaps, but Froome and Quintana already had the Tour in their legs, so weren't in their best shape.

Overall, the field of this Vuelta wasn't strong and that's why we have seen many riders win their first stage here. And no offence to those riders, but I don't see them winning a stage in the Giro or Tour.
Agreed. It was a bit like the Tour de San Luis - very strong overall contenders, but not too much depth after that. With all respect to riders like Bennett, Formolo, Yates and De La Cruz, I don't see them coming top 10 in another GT too soon (although I do expect them all to continue improving) and I certainly don't see the likes of Cort, Meersman, Keukeleire or Drucker sweeping up stage wins in big bunch sprints at the TDF.

The gaps from 4th to 5th and 6th to 7th highlight this.
Someone needs to bookmark this post so that it can be brought up when Formolo and (Simon) Yates top 10 their very next Giro/Tour participation
 
Cookster15 said:
doperhopper said:
For me Vuelta with a bit of icing over Giro but both high quality entertaining races: epic battles in both (Formigal vs. Nibali's resurrection), but Vuelta prevails, as it featured more top riders (and fully racing), and there was even epic race for the 3rd place.

As for the Tour, well, pretty much no GC battle at all, instead we saw attempts to provide some substitute entertainment (Vroom's circus aeropedalling, crosswinding, and let's not forget Oscar for his windymountain chicken run)... Of course one can mention a bit of Sagan, couple of nice sprints and breakaway stage wins, but that's not the main dish (and btw. in Vuelta you have these nice breakaway wins pretty much every day).

Imagine Tour lost its tourist primetime July spot and was swapped with Giro... nobody would watch and it would fade into the deserved "also GT" in couple of years.
For pure cycling I agree. But the Tour's appeal goes beyond cycling. France on TV has a romantic appeal that Italy and Spain can't match. That is why it retains July prime spot no matter how much worse the racing or parcours might be.
It's the riders that make the race. If the Giro and Tour were swapped around in importance, we'd see the Sky train sweeping up in Italy instead and everybody furiously defending their 9th place on GC for their sponsors and those sweet WT points while everyone would go all out in the Tour instead
 
Re: Re:

PremierAndrew said:
42x16ss said:
El Pistolero said:
dastott said:
Valv.Piti said:
The top end level was clearly better in La Vuelta, but the depth after Kruiswijk and Lopez crashed out was probably slightly worse. It also makes it look bad that Konig fell asleep, Valverde lost 10 minutes one day and Sanchez crashed and therefore fell out of top-10. It could have looked much better.
This. Froome, Quintana and Contador are the three best GT riders. OK, Chaves pushed Contador into 4th place but Contador enlivened the race majorly and was weakened by a crash. The Vuelta had a much stronger field for GC than the Giro, and has had for a few years now.
Stronger on paper perhaps, but Froome and Quintana already had the Tour in their legs, so weren't in their best shape.

Overall, the field of this Vuelta wasn't strong and that's why we have seen many riders win their first stage here. And no offence to those riders, but I don't see them winning a stage in the Giro or Tour.
Agreed. It was a bit like the Tour de San Luis - very strong overall contenders, but not too much depth after that. With all respect to riders like Bennett, Formolo, Yates and De La Cruz, I don't see them coming top 10 in another GT too soon (although I do expect them all to continue improving) and I certainly don't see the likes of Cort, Meersman, Keukeleire or Drucker sweeping up stage wins in big bunch sprints at the TDF.

The gaps from 4th to 5th and 6th to 7th highlight this.
Someone needs to bookmark this post so that it can be brought up when Formolo and (Simon) Yates top 10 their very next Giro/Tour participation
In 5 or 10 years when people talk about who fought for the podium of the 2016 Vuelta, nobody will be talking about Bennett, Formolo, Yates and De La Cruz. Its the fight for the podium that makes the level of competition. The top 5 of the 2016 Vuelta was tougher than the top 5 of the 2016 Giro. No question. Was Froome weaker than in the Tour, maybe but not by much judging by his superb TT. Was Quintana stronger than the Tour, yes. Was Nibali stronger in the 2016 Giro than when he won the 2013 Giro or 2014 Tour, no. Would Kruijswijk 2016 Giro form have challenged Quintana and Froome at the Vuelta - very doubtful.
 
Giro and Vuelta were pretty close.
Lots of drama in the Giro, but a rather weak field.
The Vuelta was good, but not always. Great field, but Quintana was super strong and Froome was very tired. It was pretty obvious that Quintana was going to win and the route was very hard, especially since it was the last GT of the year, hence the vast amount of breaks winning stages.

The Tour... well... I only remember that Contador crashed twice (unfortunately, otherwise it would certainly be less boring). Seeing turtles at making the sweet love would be funnier than watching the Tour.
 
Re: Re:

PremierAndrew said:
42x16ss said:
El Pistolero said:
dastott said:
Valv.Piti said:
The top end level was clearly better in La Vuelta, but the depth after Kruiswijk and Lopez crashed out was probably slightly worse. It also makes it look bad that Konig fell asleep, Valverde lost 10 minutes one day and Sanchez crashed and therefore fell out of top-10. It could have looked much better.
This. Froome, Quintana and Contador are the three best GT riders. OK, Chaves pushed Contador into 4th place but Contador enlivened the race majorly and was weakened by a crash. The Vuelta had a much stronger field for GC than the Giro, and has had for a few years now.
Stronger on paper perhaps, but Froome and Quintana already had the Tour in their legs, so weren't in their best shape.

Overall, the field of this Vuelta wasn't strong and that's why we have seen many riders win their first stage here. And no offence to those riders, but I don't see them winning a stage in the Giro or Tour.
Agreed. It was a bit like the Tour de San Luis - very strong overall contenders, but not too much depth after that. With all respect to riders like Bennett, Formolo, Yates and De La Cruz, I don't see them coming top 10 in another GT too soon (although I do expect them all to continue improving) and I certainly don't see the likes of Cort, Meersman, Keukeleire or Drucker sweeping up stage wins in big bunch sprints at the TDF.

The gaps from 4th to 5th and 6th to 7th highlight this.
Someone needs to bookmark this post so that it can be brought up when Formolo and (Simon) Yates top 10 their very next Giro/Tour participation
They will come Top 10 in a GT again, and quite often too judging by their ability. Just not in a very strong Giro/Tour field for at least a year or two. I'll be happy to be proven wrong, but stop and think about who didn't start the Vuelta:

Aru
Nibali
Mollema
Porte
Pinot
Bardet
Uran
Adam Yates
Gesink
Fuglsang
Meintjes
Van Den Broeck
Barguil
Dumoulin
Kreuziger
Majka

While Sanchez and Kruiswijk crashed out. Formolo and Yates are very promising young riders, but not as good as those I've listed - yet.
 
Re: Re:

42x16ss said:
They will come Top 10 in a GT again, and quite often too judging by their ability. Just not in a very strong Giro/Tour field for at least a year or two. I'll be happy to be proven wrong, but stop and think about who didn't start the Vuelta:

Aru
Nibali
Mollema
Porte
Pinot
Bardet
Uran
Adam Yates
Gesink
Fuglsang
Meintjes
Van Den Broeck
Barguil
Dumoulin
Kreuziger
Majka

While Sanchez and Kruiswijk crashed out. Formolo and Yates are very promising young riders, but not as good as those I've listed - yet.
Gesink was there. :)

He was smart. He knew he couldn't do well in the GC and went for stage wins.
 
Re:

Jspear said:
Is there a way to see who voted what? I know of one person who voted Tour, but his post was a joke. I'm wondering if there's any good reason to say the Tour was the best GT this year.... :p
I liked the Tour the most simply because it did not go as expected apart from Froome winning of course. The Vuelta had one great stage maybe two, one great TT performance, another dull TTT. Contador fell as usual and his team were mediocre as usual. Plus sprint stages won by second tier sprinters or even third tier. The Giro had one dramatic stage maybe two. Nibali won after the leader fell. Nibali seems to have as much fortune in GTs as Contador has misfortune. But for me the dramas of the Ventoux stage and the performances of Bardet, Mollema, Yates and Porte plus the unusual tactics of Froome made the Tour the most entertaining even though the last mountain stage was disappointing mainly because of the weather. There was also the performances of GVA, Cummings and Pantano. Of course there were more falls in the Tour as usual including Contador. So stage by stage the Tour was the best for me and had the best quality field of riders. The only disappointment was seeing Quintana below his best and Contador retiring when everyone was hoping for the three man battle that they missed in 2014 when it was Nibali instead of Quintana being one of the three favourites.
 
Re: Re:

42x16ss said:
They will come Top 10 in a GT again, and quite often too judging by their ability. Just not in a very strong Giro/Tour field for at least a year or two. I'll be happy to be proven wrong, but stop and think about who didn't start the Vuelta:

Aru
Nibali
Mollema
Porte
Pinot
Bardet
Uran
Adam Yates
Gesink
Fuglsang
Meintjes
Van Den Broeck
Barguil
Dumoulin
Kreuziger
Majka

While Sanchez and Kruiswijk crashed out. Formolo and Yates are very promising young riders, but not as good as those I've listed - yet.
Uran is hit and miss, Van Den Broeck isn't that good, Formolo and Yates both showed more this Vuelta than Barguil did at the Tour, Dumoulin requires a TT heavy course or he'll need ridiculously weak competition again like at the 2015 Vuelta, Gesink seems to be targetting stages now instead of GC, Porte is still capable of terrible days here and there and of course, Yates and Formolo will both have improved a lot themselves by the time of their next participation, which certainly can't be said of everyone on that list. I'd say they have a decent chance, especially Simon if he targets GC instead of stage hunting
 
Re: Re:

movingtarget said:
Jspear said:
Is there a way to see who voted what? I know of one person who voted Tour, but his post was a joke. I'm wondering if there's any good reason to say the Tour was the best GT this year.... :p
I liked the Tour the most simply because it did not go as expected apart from Froome winning of course. The Vuelta had one great stage maybe two, one great TT performance, another dull TTT. Contador fell as usual and his team were mediocre as usual. Plus sprint stages won by second tier sprinters or even third tier. The Giro had one dramatic stage maybe two. Nibali won after the leader fell. Nibali seems to have as much fortune in GTs as Contador has misfortune. But for me the dramas of the Ventoux stage and the performances of Bardet, Mollema, Yates and Porte plus the unusual tactics of Froome made the Tour the most entertaining even though the last mountain stage was disappointing mainly because of the weather. There was also the performances of GVA, Cummings and Pantano. Of course there were more falls in the Tour as usual including Contador. So stage by stage the Tour was the best for me and had the best quality field of riders. The only disappointment was seeing Quintana below his best and Contador retiring when everyone was hoping for the three man battle that they missed in 2014 when it was Nibali instead of Quintana being one of the three favourites.
okay thanks!

I agree some of the things you mentioned were nice. To that I personally would add, I enjoyed the sprints. They were way less controlled.

The predictability of the Tour overall winner was really the biggest thing keeping me from picking it.
 
Re:

Brullnux said:
Meintjes did the Vuelta, and Barguil isn't that good yet, and JVDB isn't great either
Oh yeah, I guess I missed it because he didn't ride as well as the TDF. JVDB is on the slide, true, as is Van Garderen, which is why I didn't include him.

Barguil is a funny one, I think he's capable of getting on the podium at the Vuelta or Giro if the TT kms are down and the racing is chaotic.
 

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