Is it nowadays possible to win all 5 monuments?

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Jul 6, 2015
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happytramp said:
Rechtschreibfehl3r said:
I think first we should remember that only three riders have won all Monuments. Van Looy, Merckx and De Vlaeminck Only Merckx ever won them all more than once. In Onehundred Editions for each (except for the Ronde which has 99 editions) only these riders have ever managed to win them all. And one of them is Merckx, who basically doens't even count. It's just incredibly hard to do it. The last one to complete the collection was De Vlaeminck almost 40 years ago (1977). Merckx and Van Looy achieved 5 wins in all on them within 3 seaons, De Vlaemink needed seven. To do it within 3 seasons today seem insane to me. According to the stats Steven Roots posted no one even podiumed all 5, not even 4, in the last 20-25 years.
To even speculate that someone could do it seems totally unrealistic to me. There is not one rider I can think of who I am sure would have had the potential to do it whithin the last 20 or 25 years. Hell ,the only one past the three who did it I can think of now who'd I've think could've done it if he ever cared to would've been Hinault!
Eh, what about Sean Kelly? He won 4 and got the podium of the 5th three times! (in fact the first time he didn't even chase the winner because he owed him for helping him the previous season!)
Oh my,
of course I had to forget Kelly. :D
He was just to obvious. And it was late. ;)
Anyway, Kelly as an example just underlines my point even more how incredibly hard it is to do it.
 
Jul 26, 2015
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Sean Kelly did finish in the Top-5 of each of these races, but before Kuiper did.
Thats why i did not count him.

Kelly won Liège-Bastogne-Liège in 1984 and it was that one that was missing.
Kuiper needed a Top-5 in Milano-San Remo and he won the race in 1985.

Since Kuiper and March 1985, nobody did finish on a Top-5 position in each race.

Gilbert managed to do it for 4 out of 5, and he's the only one in 17 years.

The closest, position-wise, was Rolf Sorensen as his worst result was a 6th in Paris-Roubaix.
But still, with "only" 2 different races won to his resume, you can see how insane this kind of performance (5 wins on 5 monuments) is in a modern world.
 
Aug 31, 2012
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Some riders like Gilbert, Cancellara and Valverde have enough talent to have had a reasonable chance of doing it, had they immediately dropped monuments already won from their targets and relentlessly pursued the goal of winning all 5.

A really, really talented all rounder needs to either win PR or LBL and Lombardia early in their career, then forget about them, never do them again, instead trying to improve ability in the others.

So in other words, no, it's not possible in the modern era given the objectives riders actually have.
 
Oct 23, 2011
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I also imagine teams and sponsors don't like the prospect of somebody dominating cobbled classics for a season or two dropping a ton of weight and focusing solely on hilly classics or vice versa.

But yeah, there's plenty of riders out there who have shown the ability to be good in both hilly classics and cobbles, but they need to be real good at them to win and they would need to be really dedicated to the idea of winning both cobbled and hilly classics. Who knows, maybe it would be possible for a guy like Benoot, whose been showing sick potential as a neo pro in the cobbled classics, but has climbed quite well on some occasions as well.

Maybe if Sagan gave up on being a sprinter and started focusing solely on hilly classics. But hey, so far he's getting dropped and out sprinted in the monuments that suite him perfectly. To be honest, unless he improves a bit, it will be difficult for him to win even a single monument. I know he gets hyped up like crazy, but let's be honest, Kristoff and Degenkolb have been consistently better than him in sprints after a hard 250km race, so he would probably need to get rid of them, which will be difficult for him. But if he does get rid of them, he needs to then make sure Vanmarcke, Styby et cetera don't get rid of him. I mean, of course he has a decent chance, he's a very strong rider, but Degenkolb and Kristoff are ahead of him in the sprint and Vanmarcke, Terpstra et cetera are ahead of him for more selective editions.
 
I think that if Van Avermaet can do top 5 in all of them, or even podium or to win some of them, why not?

IMO the best rider to do that is Valverde, but he has no experience in the cobbles.

The second for me is Thomas, and the third Van Avermaet. Next, Gilbert and Sagan.

it is not easy, but no impossible
 

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