Giro-Tour vs Tour-Vuelta: which is the hardest double?

Is a Tour-Vuelta double still possible in today's pro cycling?

  • Yes

    Votes: 34 87.2%
  • No

    Votes: 5 12.8%

  • Total voters
    39
Mar 14, 2016
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Seven cyclists have won the Giro-Tour double, but only two have won the Tour-Vuelta double (and none since the change of dates).

I think the Tour-Vuelta double is more difficult than the Giro-Tour one because the Tour winner is in huge demand after winning the maillot jaune and can't train properly. What do you think?
 
Mar 14, 2016
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Re:

dacooley said:
Giro-Tour is harder, but not that overwhelmingly harder like it's considered to be.
In pure sporting terms, I would agree. However, the winner has a much more difficult post-race schedule in the Tour than in the Giro (sponsor events, silly but lucrative criteriums, media appearances, flights and jet lag, etc.).
 
Re: Re:

CheckMyPecs said:
dacooley said:
Giro-Tour is harder, but not that overwhelmingly harder like it's considered to be.
In pure sporting terms, I would agree. However, the winner has a much more difficult post-race schedule in the Tour than in the Giro (sponsor events, silly but lucrative criteriums, media appearances, flights and jet lag, etc.).
I see what you are getting at. The Giro has harder parcours on the average, but the vuelta presents a more serious field of contenders on the average too IMO. The whole question boils down to inability to set a reference because on one hand there are quite different types of parcours every single year, on the other hand, we have just a several 'full value' double attempts while only Alberto Contador set this goal officially. With all due respect to Froome and Nairito, one can't call their double attempts serious, that was more of a pure improvization.
 
Jun 30, 2014
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Re: Re:

dacooley said:
CheckMyPecs said:
dacooley said:
Giro-Tour is harder, but not that overwhelmingly harder like it's considered to be.
In pure sporting terms, I would agree. However, the winner has a much more difficult post-race schedule in the Tour than in the Giro (sponsor events, silly but lucrative criteriums, media appearances, flights and jet lag, etc.).
I see what you are getting at. The Giro has harder parcours on the average, but the vuelta presents a more serious field of contenders on the average too IMO. The whole question boils down to inability to set a reference because on one hand there are quite different types of parcours every single year, on the other hand, we have just a several 'full value' double attempts while only Alberto Contador set this goal officially. With all due respect to Froome and Nairito, one can't call their double attempts serious, that was more of a pure improvization.
I wouldn't underestimate Nairo's attempt, if it wasn't for the fever on the Andorra stage (I don't think that a healthy Quintana would loose almost 3min to Aru on that kind of stage) he could have fought for the win at the Vuelta. Quintana had some bad luck, but he showed that he's one of the few guys who could go for the Tour-Vuelta double.
 
Just wondering if the day after Bore de France is over, someone would dare to start a thread "Flanders-Roubaix, Arrow-Liège, which is the hardest double?"

The day after Paris-Roubaix, my attention is all focused on the said race, I cannot imagine a cycling fan who would react differently. :eek:
 
Re: Re:

Mayomaniac said:
dacooley said:
CheckMyPecs said:
dacooley said:
Giro-Tour is harder, but not that overwhelmingly harder like it's considered to be.
In pure sporting terms, I would agree. However, the winner has a much more difficult post-race schedule in the Tour than in the Giro (sponsor events, silly but lucrative criteriums, media appearances, flights and jet lag, etc.).
I see what you are getting at. The Giro has harder parcours on the average, but the vuelta presents a more serious field of contenders on the average too IMO. The whole question boils down to inability to set a reference because on one hand there are quite different types of parcours every single year, on the other hand, we have just a several 'full value' double attempts while only Alberto Contador set this goal officially. With all due respect to Froome and Nairito, one can't call their double attempts serious, that was more of a pure improvization.
I wouldn't underestimate Nairo's attempt, if it wasn't for the fever on the Andorra stage (I don't think that a healthy Quintana would loose almost 3min to Aru on that kind of stage) he could have fought for the win at the Vuelta. Quintana had some bad luck, but he showed that he's one of the few guys who could go for the Tour-Vuelta double.
yes, exactly but that's a price a rider pays for riding a grand tour at his limit not a long time ago. when one is fresh, fully fit or simply strong enough, one almost never gets sick in a gt imo.
 
We've had this discussion before. Giro-Tour is undeniably much more difficult. The amounts of times Tour top 10 + Vuelta top 10 has been done is staggering, but you won't see the same for Giro+Tour. Not as many people even attempt it, but the ones who do, only Contador since Pantani has been able to top 10 in a Giro-Tour double, and he's done it twice. Carlos Sastre hasn't even done it, and he's done the Tour-Vuelta podium three years on the trot and often raced multiple GTs in succession.

Edit: Menchov did it once. That's the only one other than Contador who has top10 in the double. But no one since Pantani has podiumed both.
 
Feb 6, 2016
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Echoes said:
Just wondering if the day after Bore de France is over, someone would dare to start a thread "Flanders-Roubaix, Arrow-Liège, which is the hardest double?"

The day after Paris-Roubaix, my attention is all focused on the said race, I cannot imagine a cycling fan who would react differently. :eek:
Flanders-Roubaix, surely. Boonen and Cancellara may have made it look relatively easy, but it had only been done 8 times in the ninety years before they came on the scene. I don't see any riders in the future having the level of dominance that they had. Fleche-Liege is a lot easier now with the date change, and with a more specialist and thus smaller group of riders contending for victory in the Ardennes, now the GC favourites basically ignore it.
 
Giro-Tour, and it's not even close

Why?

Because the competition is generally the strongest in the Tour
Because your level is generally lower your second GT in a double
Because the Giro often has the hardest parcours, making recovery more difficult.

So, if you're doing Giro-Tour, you have to win the Tour, with the biggest names in their best form, at sub 100%.
Because the Giro is so hard parcours wise, that sub 100% could be a tad lower than in the Vuelta in a Tour-Vuelta double (I base this on the fact that a lot more riders have managed in the past to be close to their best in the Vuelta GC after having ridden the Tour for GC.

I wouldn't necessarily say that the Vuelta has better competition than the Giro. I'd say that the Vuelta in recent years has attracted bigger names than the Giro. But those coming from the Tour, often aren't quite as good as in the Tour. This is where competitors who didn't do the Tour have the advantage. But given that the best 3-6 riders usually have the Tour as their primary objective (say 70% of those), your competition in the Vuelta after winning the Tour consists of riders with the same handicap as you, or slightly lesser names coming from the Giro (or no prior GT at all) who are better rested. Even then there's a possibility that the riders that did the Giro went on to go to the Tour, which takes them out of the Vuelta gc equation completely, assuming their name is not Carlos Sastre.


Why Tour-Vuelta has never been done since the date change? I think it's pretty simple.

The Tour was so big that, after winning the Giro, competing in the Tour was still attractive, whilst doing the Vuelta after winning the Tour made little sense because you'd already won the big one. Especially given that the Vuelta used to attract lesser fields than it does now. Add to that Giro-Tour always had more history, so there was always more incentive to go for that.
 
Re:

Red Rick said:
Because the competition is generally the strongest in the Tour
Because your level is generally lower your second GT in a double
Because the Giro often has the hardest parcours, making recovery more difficult.
Yes, but

you should ride the Vuelta after you went through the Tour against the strongest possible field being at your limit, whilst the Giro can be won in a canter in spite of all the difficulties parcour-wise.

equally works for the vuelta too.

true, apart from the implicitly hardest route, giro also has the weakest line-up.

in addition, the break between tour and vuelta constantly gets shorter and there are olympic years ocasionally when gc riders have nothing but participate in the olympic events, so that is not so obvious from my perspective.
 
The Giro-Tour is. Of recent names, I can remember Basso, Sastre and Evans all failing miserably in the Tour after good Giros. And then you obviously have Contador who was without a question the best GT-rider in 2011 who didnt look anything like himself, apart from Alpe' d Huez.

I am of the firm belief that either Froome or Quintana had won the Vuelta last year after also being the two best in Le Tour. Quintana was hit by sickness and Froome couldn't handle his bike, but I think those 2 were the favourites. Valverde and Purito has also shown its doable in recent years, especially Valverde since Purito didnt ride GC in 2014 and 2015.

When thats said, the Giro-Tour is possible. Contador could've possibly done it in 2009. Relatively week Giro and Tour-fields. He didnt and he will never have that chance again. Quintana is the only one I realistically can see win both in the same year of the current riders, but you some luck along with way.
 
Mar 13, 2015
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Cannibal72 said:
Echoes said:
Just wondering if the day after Bore de France is over, someone would dare to start a thread "Flanders-Roubaix, Arrow-Liège, which is the hardest double?"

The day after Paris-Roubaix, my attention is all focused on the said race, I cannot imagine a cycling fan who would react differently. :eek:
Flanders-Roubaix, surely. Boonen and Cancellara may have made it look relatively easy, but it had only been done 8 times in the ninety years before they came on the scene. I don't see any riders in the future having the level of dominance that they had. Fleche-Liege is a lot easier now with the date change, and with a more specialist and thus smaller group of riders contending for victory in the Ardennes, now the GC favourites basically ignore it.
Well Flanders-Roubaix double had been done 12 times, and Fleche-Liege 9 times in their respective history. Not a convincing argument exactly...
 
Mar 14, 2016
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Valv.Piti said:
Valverde and Purito has also shown its doable in recent years, especially Valverde since Purito didnt ride GC in 2014 and 2015.
Neither of those two had a realistic shot at winning the Tour, though.
 
Re: Re:

dacooley said:
Red Rick said:
Because the competition is generally the strongest in the Tour
Because your level is generally lower your second GT in a double
Because the Giro often has the hardest parcours, making recovery more difficult.
Yes, but

you should ride the Vuelta after you went through the Tour against the strongest possible field being at your limit, whilst the Giro can be won in a canter in spite of all the difficulties parcour-wise.

equally works for the vuelta too.

true, apart from the implicitly hardest route, giro also has the weakest line-up.

in addition, the break between tour and vuelta constantly gets shorter and there are olympic years ocasionally when gc riders have nothing but participate in the olympic events, so that is not so obvious from my perspective.
Line up doesn't matter that much. It's correlated with the level needed to win it, which is the thing that matters. Pretty sure that that the level in the Vuelta climbing wise wasn't much better than in the Giro.

Had Froome not crashed out of the Vuelta last year, all but two of his opponents would have had the same handicap as he had.
 
Re: Re:

Red Rick said:
dacooley said:
Red Rick said:
Because the competition is generally the strongest in the Tour
Because your level is generally lower your second GT in a double
Because the Giro often has the hardest parcours, making recovery more difficult.
Yes, but

you should ride the Vuelta after you went through the Tour against the strongest possible field being at your limit, whilst the Giro can be won in a canter in spite of all the difficulties parcour-wise.

equally works for the vuelta too.

true, apart from the implicitly hardest route, giro also has the weakest line-up.

in addition, the break between tour and vuelta constantly gets shorter and there are olympic years ocasionally when gc riders have nothing but participate in the olympic events, so that is not so obvious from my perspective.
Line up doesn't matter that much. It's correlated with the level needed to win it, which is the thing that matters. Pretty sure that that the level in the Vuelta climbing wise wasn't much better than in the Giro.

Had Froome not crashed out of the Vuelta last year, all but two of his opponents would have had the same handicap as he had.
An actual line up clearly sets the level one should match to win with the exception of force majeures (landa says hi).well, let's agree to disagree as your or mine average definition of average level in average giro/vuelta, well you know that is pretty abstractive. :p
 
KyoGrey said:
Neither of them are possible.

Giro-Tour is more difficult than Tour-Vuelta.
Not possible?

Sastre 2007: 4th(3rd, leipheimer removed)Tour, 2nd Vuelta
Sastre 2008: 1st Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Froome 2012: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Quintana 2015: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Valverde 2014: 4th Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Evans 2007: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta

These are five riders who have managed a top five in both the Tour and the Vuelta in the same season in the last ten years. Only Contador has done the same in the Giro-Tour double.

I think given the right circumstances it is very possible. You need a ton of luck, some people crashing out, but it's still possible.
 
Mar 14, 2016
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jsem94 said:
KyoGrey said:
Neither of them are possible.

Giro-Tour is more difficult than Tour-Vuelta.
Not possible?

Sastre 2007: 4th(3rd, leipheimer removed)Tour, 2nd Vuelta
Sastre 2008: 1st Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Froome 2012: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Quintana 2015: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Valverde 2014: 4th Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Evans 2007: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta

These are five riders who have managed a top five in both the Tour and the Vuelta in the same season in the last ten years. Only Contador has done the same in the Giro-Tour double.
I think that's the whole point jsem94's trying to make: you might be able to podium in both races, but having the Tour in your legs takes away that final bit of oomph you need to actually win the Vuelta.
 
Aug 31, 2012
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It's hard to say. The number of riders who have a decent chance to win a GT at all is never more than a small handful, and few of them seriously attempt doubles. As a result, the number of observations we have is very small and the results reflect more the characteristics of the riders involved and their competitors, rather than the difficulty of the feat averaging over rider characteristics.

My guess is that Giro-Tour is tougher everything else equal because I think a rider could win the Vuelta aiming for a single uber peak at the Tour, and I believe the form curve of a rider who does that is right skewed, ie looks like the second chart here (imagining time being the x axis):
 
CheckMyPecs said:
jsem94 said:
KyoGrey said:
Neither of them are possible.

Giro-Tour is more difficult than Tour-Vuelta.
Not possible?

Sastre 2007: 4th(3rd, leipheimer removed)Tour, 2nd Vuelta
Sastre 2008: 1st Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Froome 2012: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Quintana 2015: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta
Valverde 2014: 4th Tour, 3rd Vuelta
Evans 2007: 2nd Tour, 4th Vuelta

These are five riders who have managed a top five in both the Tour and the Vuelta in the same season in the last ten years. Only Contador has done the same in the Giro-Tour double.
I think that's the whole point jsem94's trying to make: you might be able to podium in both races, but having the Tour in your legs takes away that final bit of oomph you need to actually win the Vuelta.
Well, those are just examples of riders getting relatively close, and most of these aren't actually the top riders that are supposed to be able to do it. Even then, what does the Tour in your legs compared to the Giro, where after that Giro you actually need to be 100% to win the Tour.

Lets look at the context of the Tour-Vuelta double, and where riders with the biggest chance just didn't try it.

-Sastre 2007, wasn't outclimbed by 3 others in that Tour, all of which didn't try the Vuelta
- Sastre 2008, was the best climber in the Tour, finished 3rd in the Vuelta behind 2 others who were not allowed to ride the Tour and likely would have done so if they had
- Contador 2009. Only rode the Tour, won very easily. I'm pretty sure he could've wrecked the Vuelta if he'd tried, though he might also have won Giro-Tour.
- Froome 2012. On a leash in the Tour, road olympics in between, and faced fresh Contador
- Froome 2013. Thinking Froome would have a better chance against Horner than Purito and Valverde.
 
Re: Re:

dacooley said:
Mayomaniac said:
dacooley said:
CheckMyPecs said:
dacooley said:
Giro-Tour is harder, but not that overwhelmingly harder like it's considered to be.
In pure sporting terms, I would agree. However, the winner has a much more difficult post-race schedule in the Tour than in the Giro (sponsor events, silly but lucrative criteriums, media appearances, flights and jet lag, etc.).
I see what you are getting at. The Giro has harder parcours on the average, but the vuelta presents a more serious field of contenders on the average too IMO. The whole question boils down to inability to set a reference because on one hand there are quite different types of parcours every single year, on the other hand, we have just a several 'full value' double attempts while only Alberto Contador set this goal officially. With all due respect to Froome and Nairito, one can't call their double attempts serious, that was more of a pure improvization.
I wouldn't underestimate Nairo's attempt, if it wasn't for the fever on the Andorra stage (I don't think that a healthy Quintana would loose almost 3min to Aru on that kind of stage) he could have fought for the win at the Vuelta. Quintana had some bad luck, but he showed that he's one of the few guys who could go for the Tour-Vuelta double.
yes, exactly but that's a price a rider pays for riding a grand tour at his limit not a long time ago. when one is fresh, fully fit or simply strong enough, one almost never gets sick in a gt imo.
Agree overall, but I think the bad luck came into play ,when the timing of the sickess is concerned. Had the sickness struck him only couple of days earlier, the possible timeloss because of it would have been lot less significant and Quintana would still have been able to fight for the win. As it happened, the sickness hit him at the time, when it could do the most damage. That's just bad luck.

As for the OP, Giro-Tour is obviously harder. As has been already stated, the level one needs to be at to win a GT, is the correct basis for comparison. And when comparing Tour and Vuelta, no sane cycling fan would say one needs to be at the higher level to win the Vuelta.

Also the Giro often has the most difficult terrain and more often than not is raced harder over all three weeks, than the other two. All of which makes it harder to recover from it, even if one has had a relatively straightforward way to victory.
 
Re: Re:

Põhja Konn said:
Also the Giro often has the most difficult terrain and more often than not is raced harder over all three weeks, than the other two. All of which makes it harder to recover from it, even if one has had a relatively straightforward way to victory.
Absolutely this.
Just ask Sir Bradley how he felt after his trip to Italy.
The weather, the streets, the stress, ambushes everywhere. Everything is impredictable in Italy in May.
And let's not forget it's the first GT of the season, right before the new contracts so lots of people want to show themselves. More hard racing.

Giro - Tour double is borderline impossible without an almost crazy amount of luck.
 
Feb 6, 2016
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Mr.White said:
Cannibal72 said:
Echoes said:
Just wondering if the day after Bore de France is over, someone would dare to start a thread "Flanders-Roubaix, Arrow-Liège, which is the hardest double?"

The day after Paris-Roubaix, my attention is all focused on the said race, I cannot imagine a cycling fan who would react differently. :eek:
Flanders-Roubaix, surely. Boonen and Cancellara may have made it look relatively easy, but it had only been done 8 times in the ninety years before they came on the scene. I don't see any riders in the future having the level of dominance that they had. Fleche-Liege is a lot easier now with the date change, and with a more specialist and thus smaller group of riders contending for victory in the Ardennes, now the GC favourites basically ignore it.
Well Flanders-Roubaix double had been done 12 times, and Fleche-Liege 9 times in their respective history. Not a convincing argument exactly...
What? You're completely ignoring the fact that Flèche's date has changed; 6 of the 9 doubles have come with Wednesday/Thursday-Sunday runnings. Changing from being the day before to being mid-week is a pretty significant step to make it easier.
 

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