Over- and underachievers during the last 20 years

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An injury emded Bennati's time as a top sprinter.
Watching him rip the peloton into pieces on crosswind stages for Contador one has to wonder if he could have done more in the spring classics, mainly Paris-Roubaix.
Still, Paris-Tours, the points classification at the Giro and the Vuelta and the big final parade in Paris, maybe he hasn't won a that much, but only the best sprinters surpass that kind of palmares. He became the besrmt domestique for flat stages that a gc rider could wish for, one hell of a rider and really useful for the team.
 
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The now retired Sondre Holst Enger, very promising as an U23 (Bronze medal in Firenze, 5th in Ponferrada) and during his years at IAM, then faded to an anonymous three years before finally retiring at just 27 years.
 
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The now retired Sondre Holst Enger, very promising as an U23 (Bronze medal in Firenze, 5th in Ponferrada) and during his years at IAM, then faded to an anonymous three years before finally retiring at just 27 years.
Wasn't Enger once tipped as the next Sagan ? Or it was Magnus Cort?
 
That was a whole group of riders who underachieved though. Part of it likely had to do with the doping-related fallout from T-Mobile and Gerolsteiner, but also the fallout from that resulting in an almost total loss of funding for the sport in Germany, hugely reduced domestic calendar, and only the one German pro team which was underfunded and treated itself as a placeholder team really hurt. Ciolek was just coming through at that time, and obviously became part of Cav's leadout but was superseded as the last man by Renshaw (Ciolek had the role in 2008) so became something of an anonymous leadout man rather than developing himself as HTC became the hateful scum that they were, and by the time he had his fluke win at MSR his star had faded somewhat. All the Germans at HTC other than Tony Martin and André Greipel were subsumed as nothing men just to be part of the leadout or pull breaks back, because that was all the team was interested in and if that wasn't your strength you were better off getting out of there like Burghardt did. Linus Gerdemann had looked like a promising breakout talent in 2007 but a bad injury in 2008 and losing his spot at HTC meant he wound up floundering on Milram and never became anything more than his initial promise, how much each factor plays in that is open to debate. Fabian Wegmann kind of tails away there as well, again how much of it is Gerolsteiner being dodgy and how much of it is Milram being a pretty rotten place to develop is open to debate, but he was also demonstrably Milram's best performer, it's just he was picking up a lot of his results from semi-classics and smaller races than the days when he was up there at the business end of La Flèche Wallonne and the Giro di Lombardia.
Would add Fothen to the mentioned guys. 12th in the Giro in 05. 14th in the Tour in 2006. Finishing only 38s behind Cunego after wearing the white jersey for nearly two weeks.
And that´s pretty much it. Raced his last WT race in 2010. Retired in 2013.
 
Sure, it's big, but I think he could win every monument.

Plus he never even has won a single Grand Tour stage because of his silly career decision to join Sky.
I think Kwiatkowski

I think the big gap in his palmares is that he doesn't have an individual GT stage win. And he'll never get that riding the Tour for Ineos.
Tobydawg, did you and I ever acknowledge our faux-pas on this?
 
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Surely Carapaz would have dropped him on another team or can I not remember the stage that well
I'm not too sure about that. Kwiatkowski did by far the most work on the front. He had also been riding gruppetto the previous two days because he knew that stage 18 would suit him best so he was fresh as a daisy.

And no, Leinster, I don't think we did. But he is still an underachiever ;)
 
This is very obscure and second-hand but I am sure that I read, possibly on this forum, that GCN's Dan Lloyd was seen as a possible future GC contender circa 2007-2009. Then again, Sky didn't even bother signing him so maybe it's not true and I'm being very lame for mentioning it.

Anyway, a real nomination possibility: Martin Elmiger. Top 10s in RVV, Paris-Roubaix, Giro di Lombardia, Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche and the World Championships (and a bunch of lesser classics and semi-classics), yet no win of real note other than the 2007 TDU.

Another possibility: Matthew Lloyd
 
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The now retired Sondre Holst Enger, very promising as an U23 (Bronze medal in Firenze, 5th in Ponferrada) and during his years at IAM, then faded to an anonymous three years before finally retiring at just 27 years.
Wow. I remember being shocked at how prominent he was for a sprinter on some pretty considerable Tour of Croatia climbs.
 
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Speaking of Scandinavians and Norwegians in particular, there's also Oskar Svendsen, the physiological wonderkid, who never really got his career going before it was over.

Although Vincenzo Albanese still has time to develop, he doesn't look like someone who's on the path to becoming a star.
 
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They've been doing OK recently. Not this year, though that was mainly down to them simply not really having a good available rider for that parcours, but they played 2019 tactically perfectly.
 
Speaking of Scandinavians and Norwegians in particular, there's also Oskar Svendsen, the physiological wonderkid, who never really got his career going before it was over.

Although Vincenzo Albanese still has time to develop, he doesn't look like someone who's on the path to becoming a star.
Quite a few Scandinavian guys would qualify for this, including people who retired at about 26. EBH and Enger as discussed, Kristoffer Halvorsen, Truls Korsæth, Kristoffer Skjerping, Tobias Ludvigsson, Sebastian Lander, Sven Erik Bystrøm, Lasse Norman Hansen and Mads Würtz Schmidt.
 
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