Best TTers past or present?

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Who is the best time trialist, past or present?

  • Fausto Coppi

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avanti said:
Greg Lemond.
His TT in the 1989 TdF give him overall victory. If my recollection is correct he posted the fasted average speed TT in the TdF at the time and since then has only been bettered twice.
Avoriaz said:
Two that haven't been mentioned:

1) when Sean Yates won the TT at Wasquehal in the 80s, it was the fastest TT ever in the Tour
You really need a sample of average speed in several ITTs in order for it to be truly representative and worthy of bringing up in this thread.

The fastest average speed long TT in a Grand Tour is from the 2005 Vuelta a España, when Rubén Plaza covered 38,9km at an average of a stunning 56,22km/h. Now, Plaza is a good time triallist, but that's still outstanding. Roberto Heras was 2nd however, and less than a second behind Plaza. "Hmmm", you might say, "but to be fair he was busted for doping at that race and that could explain the anomalous fast ITT, but when you realise that Carlos freaking Sastre was only 4 seconds back on that, you think "yea, obviously this is either downhill, massive tailwind, or both".

I would never advocate Rubén Plaza being mentioned in a list of best time triallists ever. He wasn't even the best ITT rider on Liberty Seguros Continental (Héctor Guerra was) or Caisse d'Epargne (Luís León Sánchez was).
 
May 18, 2011
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Men= Anquetil

Women= Beryl Burton



*** Read a wikipeadia entry on Jacques. He was due to do a 25 in England in the 60's and after checking the course reckoned he could do it in 48 mins. Although in the end he never rode this particular TT, Anquetil could allegedly predict his times on a given course to within seconds.
Nobody rode a 48 minute 25 in Britain until the mid 80's.

Burton was invited to ride the G.P. des Nations in 1967. :D
 
Jul 16, 2010
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jamiephillips said:
Men= Anquetil

Women= Beryl Burton



*** Read a wikipeadia entry on Jacques. He was due to do a 25 in England in the 60's and after checking the course reckoned he could do it in 48 mins. Although in the end he never rode this particular TT, Anquetil could allegedly predict his times on a given course to within seconds.
Nobody rode a 48 minute 25 in Britain until the mid 80's.

Burton was invited to ride the G.P. des Nations in 1967. :D
That's nothing, Armstrong already predicting he will win 7 Tours in 2000(sort of ish):

http://www.nytimes.com/2000/07/25/sports/cycling-armstrong-not-aiming-to-achieve-long-reign.html?src=pm
 
Apr 19, 2010
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jordan5000 said:
Who do you think are some of the best TTers, where would you rank the following: Indurain, Armstrong, Contador, Leipheimer, Merckx, Coppi (had the hour record, right?) Cancellara, Martin? Personally I think Big Mig was probably the best but I'm not sure. Also I don't think riders such as Boardman should be considered, they have to be riders who are primarily road racers.

edit- Coppi, Anquetil and Merckx are from a different era, so you can vote for two, one for a rider from that group and another from the more modern group.
A greatest TTer thread, but you can't include Boardman. What's the point.....:rolleyes:

How about a greatest sprinter thread, but you can't include Cavendish.
 
Jul 27, 2010
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Libertine Seguros said:
You really need a sample of average speed in several ITTs in order for it to be truly representative and worthy of bringing up in this thread.

The fastest average speed long TT in a Grand Tour is from the 2005 Vuelta a España, when Rubén Plaza covered 38,9km at an average of a stunning 56,22km/h. Now, Plaza is a good time triallist, but that's still outstanding. Roberto Heras was 2nd however, and less than a second behind Plaza. "Hmmm", you might say, "but to be fair he was busted for doping at that race and that could explain the anomalous fast ITT, but when you realise that Carlos freaking Sastre was only 4 seconds back on that, you think "yea, obviously this is either downhill, massive tailwind, or both".

I would never advocate Rubén Plaza being mentioned in a list of best time triallists ever. He wasn't even the best ITT rider on Liberty Seguros Continental (Héctor Guerra was) or Caisse d'Epargne (Luís León Sánchez was).
ARE YOU JOKING? My man Ruben Plaza could win a TT any day of the week against the likes of Hinault, Anquetil, Merckx, Indurain, and Cancellara!
 
Oct 17, 2011
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Both Lance and Ullrich where awesome to watch in TT's. Pretty awesome to see Lance TT with that high cadence :) I don't have a lot of knowledge of cyclist before the 90's so yea i voted for lance.

Btw which year do you guys think Lance was in his best TT form? 99? He did win all 3 TT's in 99.

Or 2000? He did a ride of 53.986 km/h 58.5 km in the final TT that year. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4CUqND8BR8

Ore maby in 2004 when he destroyed everyone in the final TT, and beat Ullrich by more then 1.10 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccb9KxKR5WY

Ore 2005 with that awesome performance in the prologue: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOQflZqzn_U
 
Mar 17, 2009
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Fowsto Cope-E said:
ARE YOU JOKING? My man Ruben Plaza could win a TT any day of the week against the likes of Hinault, Anquetil, Merckx, Indurain, and Cancellara!
His palmares suggest otherwise.

Anquetil was just 19 when he won his first GP des Nations in 1953. The GP des Nations makes modern "long" time trial courses look silly. 142km throughout the Chevreuse Valley with several sections of cobbles is way more testing than the billiard smooth roads generally used today. Cancellara won on courses barely a third of the distance, he and most of his generation have never contested anything over 70km.

Then one has Anquetil's Hour Record attempt in 1956. He was 22 when he broke Coppi's 14 year old record. At 22 Cancellara was scraping into the top 10 in the GP des Nations, getting beaten by none other than Jens Voght! He barely made the top 20 in the WC TT that same year.
 
Mar 17, 2009
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hrotha said:
Jesus Christ, ultimobici. Sarcasm? Rings any bells?

And he was an embarrassment pretty much every time he got on a road TT bike.
Not at 7.30 in the morning with a raging hangover. My bad!
 
Ercole Baldini broke Anquetil's record while still an amateur rider. This rules out the argument of Anquetil's record at a young age. Every talented rider at that time won at an early age. It all changed with Merckx.

He won 9 Nations GP but it was one of the few races he was interested in. Gimondi broke his record as the fastest Nation GP raced on the same course.

Merckx won Nations GP but once because Merckx was not interested in "series". All he wanted to do is win as many different races there is on the calendar as possible. For example, he raced the Vuelta in 1973 because he never won it before. Same with Nations GP. And winning it only once was sufficient to him. Why winning it 9 times? He won Milan-Sanremo 7 times, but without it being a purpose.

By the way,
Merckx = 49,431kmh
Anquetil = 47,493kmh

The wins in races "en ligne" are also indicative of TT abilities. The greatest rider in history is bound to be the greatest TT'er too. So there's no debate possible. :)
 
Echoes said:
Ercole Baldini broke Anquetil's record while still an amateur rider. This rules out the argument of Anquetil's record at a young age. Every talented rider at that time won at an early age. It all changed with Merckx.

He won 9 Nations GP but it was one of the few races he was interested in. Gimondi broke his record as the fastest Nation GP raced on the same course.

Merckx won Nations GP but once because Merckx was not interested in "series". All he wanted to do is win as many different races there is on the calendar as possible. For example, he raced the Vuelta in 1973 because he never won it before. Same with Nations GP. And winning it only once was sufficient to him. Why winning it 9 times? He won Milan-Sanremo 7 times, but without it being a purpose.

By the way,
Merckx = 49,431kmh
Anquetil = 47,493kmh

The wins in races "en ligne" are also indicative of TT abilities. The greatest rider in history is bound to be the greatest TT'er too. So there's no debate possible. :)
Merckx rode the Vuelta in 73 because he was banned from riding the tour that year.

Indurain is the best TTlist of all time.
 
Echoes said:
Ercole Baldini .............
By the way,
Merckx = 49,431kmh
Anquetil = 47,493kmh

The wins in races "en ligne" are also indicative of TT abilities.
Ercole Baldini broke Anquetil's record while still an amateur rider. This rules out the argument of Anquetil's record at a young age.

What's that got to do with the topic?
Baldini was 1 year older than Anquetil, so, obviously, he was older than Anquetil when he broke Anquetil's hour record. The fact that he was still an amateur until right before (because he was competing in the world championship) seems pretty irrelevant.

He won 9 Nations GP but it was one of the few races he was interested in. Gimondi broke his record as the fastest Nation GP raced on the same course.

Are you sure about that? The length and course of the GP des Nations changed quite a bit in those days.

Until 1955 it was 140.3 km, but it was becoming difficult to find victims to be slaughtered by Anquetil after such an ordeal.

So, from 1956 to at least 1961 it was reduced to 100km, but still in the Vallée de Chevreuse (many hills).

From 1965, as far as I know it was held near Cannes (south of France, not Spain as CNN would have you believe).
In 1965 Anquetil won, 3:09 ahead of Altig. Officially the distance was 73.7 km, speed 46.843 km/h, but Anquetil believed that speed to be due a mistake on distance.

In 1966 over a distance of 72 km, Anquetil finished at 43.954 km/h, 1:51 ahead of Gimondi. Merckx was THIRD.

Merckx = 49,431kmh
Anquetil = 47,493kmh


Should I assume it didn't escape you that Merckx was at 2230 m. altitude? Probably not.

If we were to trust Di Prampero's calculation (International Journal of Sports Medicine, No2 VOL 7 April 1986, page 62), those 49.431 km are equivalent to 46.2 km at sea-level.

There are probably some small effects which are not properly accounted for in his calculation. Yet, clearly, with an air pressure reduced by 23% wrt sea-level, the speed would increase by about 10% ( air pressure/(resistance) accounts for 90% of the energy expenditure).

However, one loses about 10% of aerobic power at such an altitude, so that the relative overall gain is only ~12%, which translates to a gain of ~4% at Mexico's altitude according to this back of the envelope calculation.

So, it could be that Merckx mexican hour would have allowed him to do 47.4 km at sea-level, just short of Anquetil's best.

All you are left with is that the Vigorelli track is better than Mexico's.

Added in proof :) :) :)
 
Echoes said:
.......
He won 9 Nations GP but it was one of the few races he was interested in. Gimondi broke his record as the fastest Nation GP raced on the same course.
This, which I just found concerning Gimondi 1967 seems to corroborate your claim.
le grand prix des Nations (avec le record de l’épreuve : 47,518 km/h sur 73,5 km)

that would be roughly 1:20 faster than Anquetil 1965 assuming same course.
 
Aug 31, 2011
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Voted for Cancellara as I never watched any of the other race. However, Indurain was undeniably an incredible TT rider and his record speak for itself. The way that he would destroy Tour fields is pretty special. From what I know of the guys from previous decades, Anquetil was the best.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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webbie146 said:
Both Lance and Ullrich where awesome to watch in TT's. Pretty awesome to see Lance TT with that high cadence :) I don't have a lot of knowledge of cyclist before the 90's so yea i voted for lance.

Btw which year do you guys think Lance was in his best TT form? 99? He did win all 3 TT's in 99.

Or 2000? He did a ride of 53.986 km/h 58.5 km in the final TT that year. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4CUqND8BR8

Ore maby in 2004 when he destroyed everyone in the final TT, and beat Ullrich by more then 1.10 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccb9KxKR5WY

Ore 2005 with that awesome performance in the prologue: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOQflZqzn_U

What a great post - thanks!
Tough (impossible?) to tell when Lance was at his strongest in the TT.
He was strong from early on until the end of his career.
Heck, he is still world class as a 40 year old retiree lol.

If I may, can I add Lance as a 15 year old kicking ****?
http://youtu.be/sFkAhs4vAsk

And also as a beast riding the TTT:
http://youtu.be/sZQ2K-0FugQ

It is absolutely hard to argue against Lance being the strongest TTer of all time.
Wasn't there an ITT that Big Mig rode in his prime that Lance later rode faster in his own prime? Same course, Lance faster?
 
May 18, 2011
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A bit off topic but I read a biography of Anquetil and it claimed that he only rode a bike twice or three times after he retired. One of those was his daughter's birthday and he rode across the garden and straight into the swimming pool!! :)
 
Jan 18, 2010
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Polish said:
What a great post - thanks!
Tough (impossible?) to tell when Lance was at his strongest in the TT.
He was strong from early on until the end of his career.
Heck, he is still world class as a 40 year old retiree lol.

If I may, can I add Lance as a 15 year old kicking ****?
http://youtu.be/sFkAhs4vAsk

And also as a beast riding the TTT:
http://youtu.be/sZQ2K-0FugQ

It is absolutely hard to argue against Lance being the strongest TTer of all time.
Wasn't there an ITT that Big Mig rode in his prime that Lance later rode faster in his own prime? Same course, Lance faster?
A triathlete that was a useless tester for ages. :rolleyes: Eventually he got up to speed with a fast revving style after beating cancer But indurain was killing the other riders from the word go.

Indurain was class even if his position was kind of upright, Lance a tryer but several steps behind even with a tri position, so no real contest really.

Australia have a couple of young riders like Durbridge and Hepburn, miles more talent than Lance and thats coming from a Brit :cool:
 
Jul 16, 2010
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sublimit said:
A triathlete that was a useless tester for ages. :rolleyes: Eventually he got up to speed with a fast revving style after beating cancer But indurain was killing the other riders from the word go.

Indurain was class even if his position was kind of upright, Lance a tryer but several steps behind even with a tri position, so no real contest really.

Australia have a couple of young riders like Durbridge and Hepburn, miles more talent than Lance and thats coming from a Brit :cool:
Miguel Indurain was relatively old when he won his first Tour. He didn't beat the other guys from early age on. Armstrong already won the World Championships and Fleche Wallonne at young age. He also podiumed Liège-Bastogne-Liège twice in his pre-Tour period.
 
Jan 18, 2010
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El Pistolero said:
Miguel Indurain was relatively old when he won his first Tour. He didn't beat the other guys from early age on. Armstrong already won the World Championships and Fleche Wallonne at young age. He also podiumed Liège-Bastogne-Liége twice in his pre-Tour period.
Indurain was working for Delgado, ripping fast ITT times. A super domestique with a ridiculous amount of class.

Lance was the golden boy not a workhorse like Indurain.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Unfortunatley I have to vote for armstrong, dont really remember indurain or the fellows before though :S... but armstrong was a class above ullrich(most of the time) when they came head to head, infact some of the time trials he did were just amazing got to say hats off to him, so from the riders I remember Lance first then cancellara then ullrich, although it is hard to say who is better between fabian and jan.
 
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