Most Prestigious / Your Favorite One Day Races

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Surprised the Olympic Road race is rated so highly on here... Like I know it's a biggy for the general public, but I've never really considered it a real cycling event, more like a side show that rolled out for the non-fans once every four years... Like an open day at a school or college where joe public can try (and fail) and gain an understanding of our wonderful sport.
Maybe you can open a club with Zinoviev.

It is a massive event, also for cyclists.
 
Of the northern races, RVV :beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug: the whole thing is amazing and just often enough the cycling manages to even surpass the weight of the occasion. I think most amateurs would chose that to win, just on the strength of it being the spiritual home of cycling and the crowds being so crazy.
Roubaix to me never has quite the same thing, maybe it's more prestigious for some because it's probably better known outside the sport around the world, but it feels a long way behind the Ronde for passion. There's a menace about Roubaix; always that lingering danger that detracts from the shear joy that RVV has.
Of this week's three, GW is probably the biggest for prestige but usually a bit meh racing-wise for me, it seems to be trying (too hard?) to find an identity separate to a RVV warm-up; whereas E3 and DDV are honest about their status and usually have the better racing for it. E3 is often one of the best races of the year, but most of us would probably rather one day boast to our grandchildren that we'd won Gent-Wevelgem over some midweek race named for the local motorway...

MSR is a small :beermug: but at least you know you're always getting that :beermug: same time every year and yes you have to wait a long time for it to be poured but it's always a fantastic :beermug: when it arrives. Strade is :beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug: but too often already poured away before the pub opens/TV broadcast starts; I feel the riders know how the fans feel about it and that gives it a prestige right up there with the Monuments. Liège is probably too prestigious for its own good, a smaller value classic on that type of route would be many :beermug:s. And Lombardia, hard to rank because it's so isolated from the others, is it as good as it seems to be or are we just enjoying one last proper race before a long winter?
 
Prestige:
5* Worlds and Olympic RR
4* All the monuments. The gaps between them (biggest is probably Roubaix to Lombardia) are too small to merit separate tiers
3* Strade, Amstel, GW and unfortunately FW
2* Worlds and Olympic ITT (they're still one-day races!), E3
1* San Sebastian, Omloop, Dwars, Kuurne, BP, Euros RR
0.5* All the other one-day WT races. Maybe throw in something like Scheldeprijs, Emilia, Paris-Tours or the Euros ITT here too.

Enjoyable:
Not including Worlds or Olympic RR as they're too course-dependent. Anything from 2 (Bergen, Richmond) to 4 (Firenze, Rio) is quite common here.
5* Roubaix, Strade
4* Ronde, GW, Amstel, E3
3* Lombardia, Omloop, Dwars, Kuurne, BP
2* Liège, Sanremo, San Sebastian
1* Pretty much any other WT one-day race: either they're flat sprints, or at a point in the season where I don't care, or Flèche Wallonne. Or a combination in the shape of Hamburg. Oh, and the ITTs belong here too.
Good post, red. Accordingto you, what was the best WRCC ( World's) ever?
 
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Surprised the Olympic Road race is rated so highly on here... Like I know it's a biggy for the general public, but I've never really considered it a real cycling event, more like a side show that rolled out for the non-fans once every four years... Like an open day at a school or college where joe public can try (and fail) and gain an understanding of our wonderful sport.
I think the assumption is, that for any athlete, the Olympic experience is unforgettable. Winning Olympic gold is something beyond being World Champion, and beyond the monuments for cyclists. Probably doesn't hold true for everyone, but I think the prestige nationally is such a big deal that it overrides the quirks you point out as a bike race. But I can see your point as well, that it's such an odd race that for cyclists it's a sideshow. That's why I left it out of my own rankings.

I'm also glad to hear folks like my ranking system! Maybe we'll see beers instead of stars for the rest of the Belgian events... :beermug::beermug::beermug:
 
Enjoy:
5 - Flanders, Roubaix
4 - Amstel, Strade
3 - E3, Gent, Omloop, Kuurne
2 - MSR, LBL, FW, San Sebastian, Lombardia
1 - Any other WT one day race (e.g Plouay, De Panne, Hamburg, etc)
-1 - Scheldeprijs

Although that's enjoyability, my favourites are actually different, as in this case I'd rank Amstel and Strade above Roubaix and E3 would be an intermediate level between 4 and 3.


Prestige:
5 - Worlds
4 - Flanders, Roubaix, San Remo, Liege, Lombardia
3 - Fleche, Amstel, San Sebastian
2 - Omloop, Plouay
1 - Other WT One days
 
Reactions: red_flanders
As a USA cycling fan I can't rank prestige! ;)

As to my favorite to watch/enjoy? Overall, I enjoy watching most races, and some races tend to be good every year, but it really depends on the racing on that day. The bumpy, narrow roads especially with dirt and stones tend to create better racing IMO.
:beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug: PR, Strade

AS you might gather from my frequently repeating posts: I love it when aggressive racing pays off.

EDIT: My memory is crap:screamcat:, but it seems like LBL was a great race in the 90s.
 
There's a good discussion brewing in the Ghent - Wevelgem thread about the relative prestige and popularity of some of the one day races. I thought it would be cool to have a thread about it. Adapting the star format from @Volderke , I'll put my two cents in.

My Favorites / Most Enjoyable:
In priority order within a rating:

:beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug: Flanders, Roubaix
:beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug: Strade, Worlds*, Lombardia
:beermug::beermug::beermug: MSR, Gent Wevelgem, Liege, Amstel
:beermug::beermug: Omloop, E3, Brabantse Pijl, San Sebastian, Fleche
:beermug: Others...

Less confident about this but I'll take a crack:

Most Prestigious:
In priority order within a rating:

:wineglass::wineglass::wineglass::wineglass::wineglass: Worlds**, Roubaix, Flanders
:wineglass::wineglass::wineglass::wineglass: Liege, MSR, Lombardia
:wineglass::wineglass::wineglass: Strade, Amstel
:wineglass::wineglass: Gent Wevelgem, Fleche, San Sebastian
:wineglass: Others...

I will say I think the Olympic Games RR is the most prestigious and often quite a good watch, but I left it out because it's only every 4 years. Whatever y'all want to do is fine.

* The worlds is so course dependent. Could be 5 beers, could be 2 for me.
** The jersey to wear all year and the title are hugely prestigious.

Let the mayhem begin! :D

Would not disagree with too much here other than I would be another who does not really rate the Olympics, have only been 6 Pro editions to date. I find L-B-L can be a bit boring as well.

Two one day races I like that are not on the list are GP Quebec and Giro d'Emilia, both tough with nice circuits.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
I think prestige is mainly determined by the related news coverage. If you win, but nobody knows it, it is not really winning. I experimented a little with number of google results for a given race. But I am not sure whether this makes sense, since there are also town names involved. Instead I looked at the number of pageviews of the respective english! wikipedia page in the last year.

Here are the results:
1.World Championship - Road Race116398
2.Paris - Rubaix109107
3.Tour of Flanders74097
4Liege - Bastogne - Liege56301
5.Milan - San Remo50367
6.Strade Bianche41671
7.Giro di Lombardia31613
8.Fleche Wallone27116
9.Amstel Gold Race20828
10.Gent - Wevelgem16422
11.Paris - Tours11385
12.Clasica San Sebastian9013
13.Milano - Torino7227
14.Giro del Piemonte4804
15.Giro dell'Emilia4689
16.E3 Harelbeke4685
17.Bretagne Classic4459
18.EuroEyes Cyclassics2941
 
I think prestige is mainly determined by the related news coverage. If you win, but nobody knows it, it is not really winning. I experimented a little with number of google results for a given race. But I am not sure whether this makes sense, since there are also town names involved. Instead I looked at the number of pageviews of the respective english! wikipedia page in the last year.

Here are the results:
1.World Championship - Road Race116398
2.Paris - Rubaix109107
3.Tour of Flanders74097
4Liege - Bastogne - Liege56301
5.Milan - San Remo50367
6.Strade Bianche41671
7.Giro di Lombardia31613
8.Fleche Wallone27116
9.Amstel Gold Race20828
10.Gent - Wevelgem16422
11.Paris - Tours11385
12.Clasica San Sebastian9013
13.Milano - Torino7227
14.Giro del Piemonte4804
15.Giro dell'Emilia4689
16.E3 Harelbeke4685
17.Bretagne Classic4459
18.EuroEyes Cyclassics2941
Pretty smart and interesting way to analyze it. Great perspective.
 
I agree whole heartedly with Hugo Koblet on the first page.

I also love the ranking system, please pass this on to Daniel Freibe who it was nicked off
Don’t know who Daniel is and if he came up with it first, good for him! I was actually just going to use star emojis, but the board didn’t have them so I improvised. I always get an error when using emojis from elsewhere and can’t post. Woulda also used champagne for the “prestigious” rankings if it was there.

Constraints and limitations can often lead to better ideas!
 
I think prestige is mainly determined by the related news coverage. If you win, but nobody knows it, it is not really winning. I experimented a little with number of google results for a given race. But I am not sure whether this makes sense, since there are also town names involved. Instead I looked at the number of pageviews of the respective english! wikipedia page in the last year.

Here are the results:
1.World Championship - Road Race116398
2.Paris - Rubaix109107
3.Tour of Flanders74097
4Liege - Bastogne - Liege56301
5.Milan - San Remo50367
6.Strade Bianche41671
7.Giro di Lombardia31613
8.Fleche Wallone27116
9.Amstel Gold Race20828
10.Gent - Wevelgem16422
11.Paris - Tours11385
12.Clasica San Sebastian9013
13.Milano - Torino7227
14.Giro del Piemonte4804
15.Giro dell'Emilia4689
16.E3 Harelbeke4685
17.Bretagne Classic4459
18.EuroEyes Cyclassics2941
This is basically bang on in terms of prestige.... Although I'd be curious to know how many ex-PR winners would swap it for a WC.... I remember Kelly saying he'd swap any race in his career for a WC but then backtracked and said he wouldn't give up either of his PR's for it.
 
Reactions: red_flanders
Cool thread.

:beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug:Worlds
:beermug::beermug::beermug::beermug:PR, RVV, MSR
:beermug::beermug::beermug: LBL, Lombardia, Amstel, Canadian WT races
:beermug::beermug:Strade, FW, E3 etc
:beermug:whatever is on

:cocktail::cocktail::cocktail::cocktail::cocktail:Worlds
:cocktail::cocktail::cocktail::cocktail:Monuments
:cocktail::cocktail::cocktail:Semi-classics including Strade + WT one day
:cocktail::cocktail:
:cocktail:


Main point here: I think that the worlds are definitely the pinnacle. To have rainbow for a year trumps everything, to race for the nation instead of the team is always interesting, so many top riders peak for it.

Second point: I'm a deep contrarian on Strade, going against the riders and the forum per se. It's good parcours, beautiful......but it just always feels like an early season 'real races are still far away' form gauge. When MSR comes around a bit later, it feels to me like the first proper offering is on the table and the level of heat steps up to match this.

I think you need a long history with great names on the winners list to have real prestige and also, real desperation to win; to join that famous list.
 
Reactions: Luthor
I think prestige is mainly determined by the related news coverage. If you win, but nobody knows it, it is not really winning. I experimented a little with number of google results for a given race. But I am not sure whether this makes sense, since there are also town names involved. Instead I looked at the number of pageviews of the respective english! wikipedia page in the last year.

Here are the results:
1.World Championship - Road Race116398
2.Paris - Rubaix109107
3.Tour of Flanders74097
4Liege - Bastogne - Liege56301
5.Milan - San Remo50367
6.Strade Bianche41671
7.Giro di Lombardia31613
8.Fleche Wallone27116
9.Amstel Gold Race20828
10.Gent - Wevelgem16422
11.Paris - Tours11385
12.Clasica San Sebastian9013
13.Milano - Torino7227
14.Giro del Piemonte4804
15.Giro dell'Emilia4689
16.E3 Harelbeke4685
17.Bretagne Classic4459
18.EuroEyes Cyclassics2941
Add Omloop and the Olympics (which I would definitely rank below any of the monuments; sorry), and that's your top 20 right there. Paris-Tours should probably be lower, San Sebastian higher, but we're quibbling about the minor placings there.

Personally, I'd have Liege above Flanders; I think with the Ans finish and the way the race kinda turned into an uphill-bunch-sprint-Valverde-Procession in the 2010s probably had a negative impact on its perception, but in terms of overall history, and the list of winners, I'd put it on the same stratum as Roubaix, if not necessarily equal.
 
Second point: I'm a deep contrarian on Strade, going against the riders and the forum per se. It's good parcours, beautiful......but it just always feels like an early season 'real races are still far away' form gauge. When MSR comes around a bit later, it feels to me like the first proper offering is on the table and the level of heat steps up to match this.

I think you need a long history with great names on the winners list to have real prestige and also, real desperation to win; to join that famous list.
I get what you're saying about Strade, but I feel like the riders do take it a bit more seriously than "just an early season race"; witness it becoming such a good form indicator for MSR in recent years, but also quite a few GT riders showing up there instead of being on an altitude camp in the Canaries or whatever (Valverde, Bardet, Fuglsang, Dumoulin, Pinot, all have top 10s in the past 5 editions). Like Liege, it's a very strong test of an all-rounder, and if someone had only come up with the idea for it sooner, it would surely rank higher.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
I think prestige is mainly determined by the related news coverage. If you win, but nobody knows it, it is not really winning. I experimented a little with number of google results for a given race. But I am not sure whether this makes sense, since there are also town names involved. Instead I looked at the number of pageviews of the respective english! wikipedia page in the last year.

Here are the results:
1.World Championship - Road Race116398
2.Paris - Rubaix109107
3.Tour of Flanders74097
4Liege - Bastogne - Liege56301
5.Milan - San Remo50367
6.Strade Bianche41671
7.Giro di Lombardia31613
8.Fleche Wallone27116
9.Amstel Gold Race20828
10.Gent - Wevelgem16422
11.Paris - Tours11385
12.Clasica San Sebastian9013
13.Milano - Torino7227
14.Giro del Piemonte4804
15.Giro dell'Emilia4689
16.E3 Harelbeke4685
17.Bretagne Classic4459
18.EuroEyes Cyclassics2941
Interesting!
Because I had doubts about this being too anglo-centric. Idk what website you used but just looking at Paris-Roubaix over the last 30 days (use the page information listed under tools on the sidebar of the page) I get the following data.

English version: 12,114
Spanish version: 4,081
Dutch version: 8,033
French version: 8,238
Italian version: 7,168

But if we then take Ronde van Vlaanderen:
English version: 10,497
Spanish version: 4,031
Dutch version: 11,997
French version: 7,273
Italian version: 7,375

And MSR
English version: 27,484
Spanish version: 10,100
Dutch version: 29,180
French version: 20,875
Italian version: 28,475

So yeah just looking at these numbers it does not seem like there is an obvious regional preference for some races over others (apart from the country that the race is held).
 
I get what you're saying about Strade, but I feel like the riders do take it a bit more seriously than "just an early season race"; witness it becoming such a good form indicator for MSR in recent years, but also quite a few GT riders showing up there instead of being on an altitude camp in the Canaries or whatever (Valverde, Bardet, Fuglsang, Dumoulin, Pinot, all have top 10s in the past 5 editions). Like Liege, it's a very strong test of an all-rounder, and if someone had only come up with the idea for it sooner, it would surely rank higher.
I was reading too fast and read "canneries" and had this image of a bunch of skinny dudes freezing while riding around fish canneries in Alaska!
 

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