Future GT Winner (Edition 2021)

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Who will win a Grand Tour?


  • Total voters
    125
  • Poll closed .
Van Aert would almost certainly have to drop muscle mass and then you never know what power output remains.
You're right, of course.

But even when we seem to have him figured out, he still finds ways to amaze (like taking the fight to Alaphilippe on his own sort of terrain yesterday i.e. very impressive).

I just don't find a lot of names on the "future star" list to be anywhere near as incredible (or constantly improving like WvA seems to be). Obviously GT cycling is different to what WvA excels at, but...

I've seen strange things happen in cycling before.
 
Giving that he didn't have the optimal prep for the Tour and that in Tirreno he was still able to also beat Ewan in a sprint, I think he already this year (with no OG after the Tour and perfect prep before) could have ridden for GC.
I was actually surprised they never went for it. My guess it that for the time being, with Roglic a good bet for the win, and Wout still doing so much cross and being so extremely good at sprinting, they just pushed it further into the future. "Exploit" his current abilities and the explosiveness of youth, and then, maybe in 2023, when he's still in peak cycling age, lose a very little bit of that sprinting ability and go for more endurance/ Tour GC, and keep cross in winter a very low priority/ more for fun.
I doubt he will ever be the absolute best climber in a race, but he can go with the best and then play his advantage with bonuses and time trialing.
 
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Wouldn't finish within 5 minutes on the queen stage if they're properly out to break him.
I agree. We saw what happened this year on the Tignes stage when Wout was dropped on the Col du Pre within the first 4 kms. If I recall correctly, TJV were still in "let's see what happens" mode at that point and hadn't fully switched to defending Vingegaard's GC hopes. That was a mid-major mountain stage, not a full-on epic.

I could be wrong and that Wout wasn't trying to stick with the lead climbers, however. But that was a stage where Colbrelli -- even though he was in the break -- was strong till the very end.
 
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I was actually surprised they never went for it. My guess it that for the time being, with Roglic a good bet for the win, and Wout still doing so much cross and being so extremely good at sprinting, they just pushed it further into the future. "Exploit" his current abilities and the explosiveness of youth, and then, maybe in 2023, when he's still in peak cycling age, lose a very little bit of that sprinting ability and go for more endurance/ Tour GC, and keep cross in winter a very low priority/ more for fun.
I doubt he will ever be the absolute best climber in a race, but he can go with the best and then play his advantage with bonuses and time trialing.
I think it was the plan until his surgery. And while he could very well crack in the mountains, I also think a podium position was a possible outcome. Tirreno was on his path to the cobbles, so for the Tour he could maybe take it to the next level.
 
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Andy Hood at Velonews ranked the current and future GT contenders. I don’t think he nailed it, but nobody can get it right every time:
  1. Tadej Pogačar — the new Merckx, but with a smile
  2. Primož Roglič — only missing a yellow jersey
  3. Egan Bernal — doubts linger about his back
  4. Richard Carapaz — best climber on his best day
  5. Simon Yates — time trials are his bête noire
  6. Enric Mas — might be a few watts short of a Tour winner
  7. Jonas Vingegaard — he’s got all the tools, but was 2021 a fluke?
  8. Miguel Ángel López — can he bounce back from Vuelta exit?
  9. Joâo Almeida — 4th and 6th in Giro hints at more
  10. Jack Haig, Tao Geoghegan Hart — time to confirm

 
Haig, Lopez, Mas and to a lesser degree Almeida, Martinez and Valsov we have seen a lot of already and they somewhat have shown what they can do and what they cant. I dont think we can expect a massive leap in performance anymore from those guys. They will need a weakish field and some luck to win a GT.

Mader, Evenepol and Vingegaard might still be able to find another gear or even turn into Pogacar, Froome, Contador like GT dominators. Or maybe they wont, Vingegaard has proven the most of that group, Mader is a wildcard.

Ben OConnor seems like a random pick, you could swap him with guys like Gaudu, Hugh Carthy, Jay Hindley, Ciccone, Buchmann, Sepp Kuss. I guess before they will find themself GT not starring Roglic, Pogacar, Carapaz or Bernal another wave of young talent will have come up not leaving them a chance at overall victory. Unless they join Bahrain Victorious that is of course.
 
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I'm not sure what luck you're talking about. The ride to chase Andy basically solo all the way up the Galibier wasn't a fluke, it was an experienced head deciding it was now or never.
Evans rode great but a lot of contenders crashed (especially those that could rival him in the TT of Wiggins and Klöden who were both in good form) that year on top of Contador originally not planning on the Tour. If Contador didn’t attack early on the Alpe stage it would have been crazier on the climb.
But he rode a perfect race, was in form, his team was there for him, set the pace himself when he needed too, and avoided all troubles.
 
Andy Hood at Velonews ranked the current and future GT contenders. I don’t think he nailed it, but nobody can get it right every time:

Ah yes, the Tao Hart at 10th. Honestly I cant even remember who won that Giro since I had it erased from my memory. Was it Tao or Hindley? Honestly it doesnt matter since no one will be close to win again

I think Mas is the most likely to win a GT next year of those and its obviously the Vuelta Im talking about here, Almedia being a close 2nd in the Giro.
 
What would this poll would have looked like in the past? In 1987 it could have been something like this:
  • Andrew Hampsten
  • Charly Mottet
  • Erik Breukink
  • Fabio Parra
  • Flavio Giupponi
  • Jean-François Bernard
  • Raúl Alcalá
  • Reimund Dietzen
  • Robert Millar
  • Urs Zimmermann
In 1999 these might have been the options:
  • Ángel Casero
  • Fernando Escartín
  • Frank Vandenbroucke
  • Gilberto Simoni
  • Igor González de Galdeano
  • José Maria Jimenez
  • Laurent Dufaux
  • Paolo Savoldelli
  • Richard Virenque
  • Roberto Heras
Who would you have voted for back then?
 
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I'm not sure what luck you're talking about. The ride to chase Andy basically solo all the way up the Galibier wasn't a fluke, it was an experienced head deciding it was now or never.
If the Schleck brothers actually raced the Pyrenees instead of letting Voeckler stay in yellow, it would have been a different race. Then there was the massacre on the Cap Frehel stage that took out Vino, Wigans and others.

Yes, Evans was excellent but the chips also fell his way, although you can argue it was due after 07/08 and 2010.
 
What would this poll would have looked like in the past? In 1987 it could have been something like this:
  • Andrew Hampsten
  • Charly Mottet
  • Erik Breukink
  • Fabio Parra
  • Flavio Giupponi
  • Jean-François Bernard
  • Raúl Alcalá
  • Reimund Dietzen
  • Robert Millar
  • Urs Zimmermann
In 1999 these might have been the options:
  • Ángel Casero
  • Fernando Escartín
  • Frank Vandenbroucke
  • Gilberto Simoni
  • Igor González de Galdeano
  • José Maria Jimenez
  • Laurent Dufaux
  • Paolo Savoldelli
  • Richard Virenque
  • Roberto Heras
Who would you have voted for back then?
Heras, Simoni, Escartin, Virenque and at times Jimenez (RIP) looked like near certainties, while VDB (RIP) looked like he was going to become an Ardennes and stage hunting beast. Dufaux looked like a maybe when on form, if you squinted hard enough.
 
I would have been very concerned for Red Rick's well-being had Cadel Evans gained substantial time during the 2011 Tour on a cobbled stage.

It may have been enough to make him pull the pin, which would have at least saved him the grief of seeing PDBF (and Sky dominance) I suppose :p
 
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If the Schleck brothers actually raced the Pyrenees instead of letting Voeckler stay in yellow, it would have been a different race. Then there was the massacre on the Cap Frehel stage that took out Vino, Wigans and others.

Yes, Evans was excellent but the chips also fell his way, although you can argue it was due after 07/08 and 2010.
Hard to call losing in 2008 and 2007 unlucky when he was routinely dropping 2 minutes on a MTF.
 
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If the Schleck brothers actually raced the Pyrenees instead of letting Voeckler stay in yellow, it would have been a different race. Then there was the massacre on the Cap Frehel stage that took out Vino, Wigans and others.

Yes, Evans was excellent but the chips also fell his way, although you can argue it was due after 07/08 and 2010.
Crashes and bad tactics took out half of Pogacar’s rivals the last 2 years, do we consider him lucky too? Your opponent’s misfortune/misjudgement is a part of the whole circus of the Tour. I’m not a fan of Cuddles by any stretch, but when his opportunity presented itself, he took responsibility.
 
Crashes and bad tactics took out half of Pogacar’s rivals the last 2 years, do we consider him lucky too? Your opponent’s misfortune/misjudgement is a part of the whole circus of the Tour. I’m not a fan of Cuddles by any stretch, but when his opportunity presented itself, he took responsibility.
If you consider Roglic to be both halves of his Tour rivals in 2 years, then yes?

I just don't think that "luck is needed to win the Tour" is enough to handwave it all away and to also ignore the gaping chasm of difference in level between the two.

For Pogacar, the "what if" is that Roglic might have given him a fight.

For Evans, the "what if" is by how many minutes he loses if Contador doesn't go to the Giro and doesn't crash multiple times in that Tour.
 
What would this poll would have looked like in the past? In 1987 it could have been something like this:
  • Andrew Hampsten
  • Charly Mottet
  • Erik Breukink
  • Fabio Parra
  • Flavio Giupponi
  • Jean-François Bernard
  • Raúl Alcalá
  • Reimund Dietzen
  • Robert Millar
  • Urs Zimmermann
In 1999 these might have been the options:
  • Ángel Casero
  • Fernando Escartín
  • Frank Vandenbroucke
  • Gilberto Simoni
  • Igor González de Galdeano
  • José Maria Jimenez
  • Laurent Dufaux
  • Paolo Savoldelli
  • Richard Virenque
  • Roberto Heras
Who would you have voted for back then?
In 1987 I thought 1988 would be dominated by LeMond and Delgado- obviously didn’t happen for LeMond, but I was never on the Jeff Bernard hype train back then. I probably would’ve said Hampsten out of that group. After 1999, I would’ve voted Heras.
 

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