Ranking this year's GTs

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1 Tour - Solely due to the last 2 alpe stages. That was awesome. In 1 whole day you got more action then normally in 5 mt stages in other GT's...
2 Vuelta - The non-performance of so many contenders made this a suprisingly nice race. With some total suprises at the end
3 Giro - Also an awesome edition yet again. Contador dominance overshadowed it a bit and the final weekend hard stages were not really needed anymore (except for Kruijswijk to bump himself into top 10)

All 3 were great. This was just my slight preference. Ask me again next week and I probably reverse the order... they were just great!
 
Mar 8, 2010
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Tour > Giro > Vuelta

Tour de France - Best TdF since many years and cleary best GT this year. Even the loss of many GC-riders was compensated by the great competition, that could have been even greater. Voeckler fighting was great to see, but he overdid things a little bit. Same goes for the chamaeleon.
For me THE moment was, when Cadel fought for himself and wasn't fooled.
he just put the hammer down and didn't care about the suckers.
Thats where he won the Tour, and especially because of this special performance he totally earned it.

Giro - no competition for Alberto, but anyway great to see him perform and spank the others. The awesomeness was more delivered by the course than by the riders. After WW, I tried everything to enjoy the Giro, but somehow it didn't work. There was this shadow.
This Giro delivered much emotions. Not only postive ones. I cried like a baby when the peloton lined up in rows and the Leopards crossed the line, holding Tyler in their middle.
I was very proud of the cycling community and of beeing a part of it when I saw this and how everything was handled.

Vuelta - it was a good race, but no way what I expected when it comes to the results. :D
But besides the great day on Angliru, 3 Sagan and a Kittel-win, there is not much that I will remember in a few months.
 
Went for Giro>Vuelta>Tour.

We all knew who was going to win the Giro from the start, and obviously it wasn't as good as 2010. It was the best GT as a whole though, apart from the tragedy at the beginning. AC put in one of the best, certainly most comprehensive GC performances of recent times though.

Tour was disappointing apart from two stages in the last week. There weren't many good stages though, and the amount of GC riders who crashed out didn't help. Andy didn't win though, which was good.

Vuelta and the Tour had good GC battles, and the Vuelta had the best stage finish. Apart from the not so great final week parcours, the Vuelta was better. Plus, Moncoutie and Chavanel did well.
 
Apr 18, 2010
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#1 giro
because the course itself did not need that exiting battle for gc, at least to my taste. it was a route vs riders, every stage win by a rider left them unable to do anything for the next couple of days and i loved that sprint stages got won by sprinters and climbing stages got won by climbers. i loved that stages left gc men to fend by themselves.

#2 vuelta just because of angliru and time bonuses. the firs made the race an actual test of climbing prowess and the bonuses help to have gc men attaking whenever they could. i also loved the way sagan raced its first gc.

#3 the tour the good was that it showed that contador is subject to bad luck as well as attricion showing that he is only human and cadel's king of agressive deffence style. other than that much of the same cav. winning most sprint stages, a couple of breakaways that got away because they did not matter, schlecks inability to perform, marred a couple of early crashes that affected the gc race and no clear peloton shreding queen stage.
 
Jul 16, 2011
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Went for Tour > Giro > Vuelta

The first two weeks of the tour were a slow burner with several vignettes rather than GC interest. The Hushovd -Roy stage was the best, apart from that the Pyrenees were disappointing, but I think a lot of that was due to the caginess of the GC riders. The race starting to come into live going into the Alps, which were a couple of days of incredible racing.

Giro - As for the past years, the Giro had the best and most varied parcours and the best races in individual stages (the strade bianche stage is always great). However, the fight for the overall was one-sided, which means that it will be this year's tour that stays in my mind.

Vuelta - Close, but apart from the Angliru, there was nothing really epic. Even though it was close, everything after the Pena Cabarga was an anti-climax.

Overall, I would say it was definitely a good year
 
Jul 16, 2010
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Moondance said:
2007 was a weak year. Di Luca with a rather lacklustre Giro win, a reasonably exciting Tour marred by major controversy, and a Vuelta with the weakest GT parcours in my lifetime.

This year featured two very exciting GTs (Tour & Vuelta) and a Giro which was a slight disappointment compared to the previous years.
2007 Tour was one of the best ever this decade. It wasn't reasonably exciting, but extremely exciting. Giro wasn't bad either...
 
Jan 27, 2011
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Giro > Tour > Vuelta

Purely on how the races created emotion, although some emotion that wasnt 'planned' in the Giro but still such extreme racing and awesome stages. The Tour somewhat gave me a 'meh' feeling, lots of contenders crashing out and some not in top form.

And the final week of the Vuelta was, like Tank Engine said, a huge anticlimax..
 
Apr 1, 2009
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For the first time in years, the Tour was the best GT. Last week was awesome!
Giro again had an epic parcours, but Contador's dominance took away some of the appeal.
The Vuelta was again, for a third year in a row, pretty exciting in terms of the GC battle, but it was too easy IMO. The points jersey battle between TGBM and Purito kept us all glued in front of screens today.
On a scale of 1-10, I'd give the Tour an 8.5, the Giro and the Vuelta both get 8.
 
The Giro had by far the best stage of the year, but, I went for Tour > Vuelta > Giro.
The Tour was, by some way, the best. The Giro was the major disappointment I expected, after 2010.
Still the raced I'd chose to watch, if it had to be just one.
 
Feb 25, 2010
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Zoncolan said:
For the first time in years, the Tour was the best GT. Last week was awesome!
Giro again had an epic parcours, but Contador's dominance took away some of the appeal.
The Vuelta was again, for a third year in a row, pretty exciting in terms of the GC battle, but it was too easy IMO. The points jersey battle between TGBM and Purito kept us all glued in front of screens today.
On a scale of 1-10, I'd give the Tour an 8.5, the Giro and the Vuelta both get 8.
Agree with most of this, although I was dissapointed with the Pyrenees at le Tour. Also sucked that so many contenders crashed out :eek:
 
Jun 16, 2011
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my 1st time ever watching giro. it was a shocking and sad stage 3. something i hope to never see again. i was going to stop watching cycling. but the respectful way losing dear wouter weylandt was handled, the tribute the day after, plus the love along the route was incredibly moving. contador's performance was a welcome relief to bring back joy and i admire how that guy deals with adversity on a bike. the mountain stages were spectacular. contador dominated but the stage profiles themselves were the biggest star in the end. i can't wait for giro 2012.

giro>vuelta>tour

first 2 weeks of the tour - too much time before a mountain stage and featured nervous defensive GC riding, though the last week was exciting. the vuelta overall surprised and was great fun.

many thanks to all 3 GT's and the peloton
 
Oct 16, 2010
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I think that vuelta is not anymore a GT comparable to giro and tour
I enjoyed the race because it was still in discussion until last stages but IMHO the road is too weak to compare the vuelta to the others two GTs.
no mountain stage more than 200km with three or four grand cols: no gardeccia stage, no agnello-izoard-galibier stage, no really difficult stage in the last week where GT rider can really make the difference ( pena cabarga it is not enough).
this kind of road , short stages (160km) with a garage ramp at the end favourish a different kind of racer than the normal gt winner.
normally GT winner excels on long stages with more than a difficulty, repeated long climbs and among the best skills requested to win a gt there is recover and the ability to make the difference in the third week.
this could be one of the reason why diesel engines like menchow, VBD2, nibali did not excel in this vuelta ( also their form may be was not that good)in favour of different kind of riders like cobo and froome, who never proved anything on a traditional road GT.

vuelta is becoming a completely different kind race than a traditional gt: no long stages, no long climbs, no difficult and selecting stages in the third week, with consequently a completely different kind of winner.

so, even if vuelta has been entertaining, my ranking is : tour first, giro second, vuelta third
 
Jun 16, 2009
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Say what?

spalco said:
I liked all three this year, although all had their flaws
- Giro: So much Contador awesomeness that everything else was eclipsed a little bit. And of course Wouter Weylandt.
- Tour: Great edition, but too many crashes that took out contender which resulted in an unworthy winner (imo, don't crucify me).
- Vuelta: Also very exciting and with very unexpected contenders. Hopefully the results don't get changed retroactively.
Too bad! I am going to crucify you!

How the hell wasn't the winner worthy? PLaese enlighten me? Maybe you need to rewatch some of the stages to Alpe D'Huez and the Col du galibier?


Some people...
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Much better Tour than usual.
Much worse Giro than usual
Vuelta on about a usual level

So..

Tour
Vuelta
Giro

That said, the vuelta still feels more like an extended one week race than a grand tour. It doesnt have that wow factor.
 
Apr 14, 2011
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I would go for Giro-Tour-Vuelta. Immediately after the Tour I would probably have put it first, but in retrospect I enjoyed more stages during the Giro, and the final week of the Tour cannot quite make up for the first two.

The Vuelta was kind of unsatisfying. Overall it was a hard race, with few transitional stages and plenty of good racing. But, as Proff says, the lack of 200km plus mountain stages with 3-4 really tough climbs is a big handicap. It will be interesting to see if Froome and Cobo can back their performances up next year, and after that.
 
May 14, 2010
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Gotta go Tour>Giro>Vuelta.

Each of them was pretty exciting in its own way and for its own reasons. For dramatic scope and the build up of dramatic tension to a climax, I'd have to rate the Tour higher than the other two. Also, the Tour gets extra points in my book for producing the most deserving winner in memory. I was sorry to see so many crashes, but crashes are, alas, part of racing. If nothing else, they give those who aren't fans of the eventual winner an excuse, so they, the crashes, have some redeeming value at least. :D




The Giro was exciting but was conducted in the shadow of last year's edition, which it really was unlikely to live up to. Contador's dominance was fun to watch - and it's always a pleasure to watch him race in any case - but it didn't make for a whole lot of dramatic tension. The biggest cause for suspense in the race was whether or not they were going to traverse the Crostis. While it certainly wasn't the fault of the Giro that Wouter died, his death brought my interest level down to zero, and from there it was a slow and shallow climb back up. After Wouter I was glad they didn't do the Crostis, as I had no stomach for any more tragedy. (I think they should do the Crostis in future editions, but use mountain bikes for it. That would probably be safer and would also be something fresh in a GT.)




I followed the Vuelta less closely than the other two and watched with less care. I prefer one day races over GTs, and of the GTs I usually have least interest in the Vuelta. This year, watching Froome come from basically nowhere to out climb his captain, and then watching Froome and Cobo duke it out, was exciting, especially after I began to warm up to Cobo. Also, the inclusion of the Basque region certainly added interest, though I was a bit ambivalent about this at first. I'm not that familiar with the politics involved, but it does seem the Basques have a legitimate claim to self-determination. The reaction of the Basque fans greatly added to the excitement level of the race, and convinced me that sending the Vuelta to their region was the right thing to do. The parcours of the last week, however, really detracted from the race when it should have added to it. They'd have been better off cutting out the last week altogether but of course then they wouldn't have had a Grand Tour. In any event Cobo proved to be a deserving winner, which is always gratifying, but that didn't make up for an unimaginative final week.



So there you have it: Tour>Giro>Vuelta.
 
Mar 15, 2009
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Tour>Giro>>>>Vuelta

Both Galibier stages were worth a full GT. Awesome Schleck and incredible Evans (the first time I've respected him as a real GT racer) in the first, and a Merckx-like Contador in the second.

Giro's parcours was unbelievably hard, but Contador lacked competition to make the race great.

I just hate the way Vuelta has evolved. Short stages, short climbs and hard or complicated finishes to make casual TV audiences happy. No wonder even Purito consider himself able to win... Trust me: every Spaniard in his area can design truly hard stages. I'm one of them.
 
May 28, 2010
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Vuelta>Tour>>Giro

The parcours of the Giro had the potential to turn out an epic GT, but the riders simply didn't ride it that way. The combination of the death of Weylandt and Contador's dominance took the luster off the race. Also, the parcours was so difficult that riders not named Contador were simply focused on surviving rather than racing to win the GC (though to be fair, they knew they didn't really have a chance). If we were rating these races before the season, I would certainly have put the Giro first, but let's face it--the racing was for the most part a snoozefest.

As for the Tour, it was certainly one of the best editions in years as far as GC action. The last two stages in the Alps were simply epic and will be remembered for years. The GC battle was also relatively close until the end, and had a deserving winner. However, the Tour became a race decided in 3 or 4 days. The first week and a half amounted to absolutely nothing aside from many favorites crashing out and Thor Hushovd showing his climbing ability. It was all in all a good race, but as someone else pointed out, it was basically a weeklong race.

People are always going to question the Vuelta just because it doesn't have the history or the field quality of the Giro or Tour (both of which are valid points), but let's face it--it provided the most consistently exciting racing of the GT season. The short, steep finishes in the opening week were exciting and provided a nice change of pace from an opening week given to the sprinters. The Sierra Nevada, though not crazy-exciting proved relatively interesting as we saw riders we never expected gaining time on the favorites. That was the best part of this Vuelta: it was extremely unpredictable. My only gripe with the Vuelta was that the second and third weeks should have been reversed. The GC didn't change in the latter part of the third week, and had the race not been so close, it would have been much more boring at this point, but it wasn't. It was exciting up until the end.

That said, I could certainly do without the crazy, hazardous, and idiotic stage finishes that the Vuelta organizers set up this year. What were they trying to prove exactly?
 
Sep 21, 2009
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Tour was better than expected, but the real action was mostly limited to the last week.
Giro had the best course, but Contador's domination made it less entertaining.
The Vuelta, as I said last year, is quickly becoming a 3-week long Tirreno-Adriatico. But it's still way harder than any edition before 1983. The decision to go to the Basque Country after 33 years and the circumstances surrounding it have compromised the course of the last week.

Now some figures:
The Vuelta was only 130kms shorter than the Tour.
The Vuelta winner total time has been just 1h13min less than that of the Tour winner.
Both Tour and Vuelta were completed by 167 riders, a record high for the Vuelta.
The Tour lanterne rouge finished @ + 3h 57' 43"
There have been 31 riders in the Vuelta at more than 4h, and 6 at more than 5h.
The lack of long mountain stages is somewhat compensated by the aggressive riding in hilly finishes, both uphill and downhill. The lack of flat stages has led riders to ride in the gruppetto in more stages than the Tour.

And these are two interesting bits of Stuart O'Grady's comments on the Vuelta:
http://twitter.com/#!/StueyOG/status/112443834222387200
Vuelta used to be a nice little training camp pre-worlds,now theyve made it a 3week survival camp.this is becoming too tuff for pre-worlds
http://twitter.com/#!/StueyOG/status/112444829274882048
So more and more riders will start using these cool, well organised, races in USA,Canada and Britain. Anyways. Thats my input for the day!
Being the 'easiest' of the 3-week races and still having trouble to attract good riders. From the tweets of some of them I guess the Vuelta only selling point is having better hotels than other races. Both Giro and Vuelta are on the edge of turning into races for their local riders (and not even their best ones) and a kind of World Tour version of the Tour de l'Avenir for the young pros. Gone are the days of Tour contenders doing a second GT a year.
 
Jul 16, 2010
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icefire said:
Tour was better than expected, but the real action was mostly limited to the last week.
Giro had the best course, but Contador's domination made it less entertaining.
The Vuelta, as I said last year, is quickly becoming a 3-week long Tirreno-Adriatico. But it's still way harder than any edition before 1983. The decision to go to the Basque Country after 33 years and the circumstances surrounding it have compromised the course of the last week.

Now some figures:
The Vuelta was only 130kms shorter than the Tour.
The Vuelta winner total time has been just 1h13min less than that of the Tour winner.
Both Tour and Vuelta were completed by 167 riders, a record high for the Vuelta.
The Tour lanterne rouge finished @ + 3h 57' 43"
There have been 31 riders in the Vuelta at more than 4h, and 6 at more than 5h.
The lack of long mountain stages is somewhat compensated by the aggressive riding in hilly finishes, both uphill and downhill. The lack of flat stages has led riders to ride in the gruppetto in more stages than the Tour.

And these are two interesting bits of Stuart O'Grady's comments on the Vuelta:
http://twitter.com/#!/StueyOG/status/112443834222387200

http://twitter.com/#!/StueyOG/status/112444829274882048


Being the 'easiest' of the 3-week races and still having trouble to attract good riders. From the tweets of some of them I guess the Vuelta only selling point is having better hotels than other races. Both Giro and Vuelta are on the edge of turning into races for their local riders (and not even their best ones) and a kind of World Tour version of the Tour de l'Avenir for the young pros. Gone are the days of Tour contenders doing a second GT a year.
Contador will most likely do the Vuelta next year. Most GT contenders don't care for the Worlds, so that argument doesn't really hold up. In recent years only Evans became world champion.
 
I dont think any where that great as a whole but i will remember some great moments from all of them.

Pena Cabarga undoubtedly the best from the Vuelta but Anton into Bilbao, and the Jaen, San Lorenzo de Escortial finishes also were awesome.

From the Tour I will never forget Contador attacking on stage 19 96km out and breaking everyone but Schleck. Never forget it. Another thing that gave me goosebumps was Alberto Contador attacking on stage 16 when everyone expected boring everyone rolling intogether. Cracking everyone but Samu and Cuddles.

There was also Contador attacking on the descent and outdescending everyone but him and Samu having too much flat km to do against 7 riders. A mention to A Schleck attacking 60km out and getting possibly the most impressive stage victory in years.

The Giro had stage 15. It was obviously overshadowed by certain events which we will never forget, but the cameradary towards the riders friends was nice to see. I enjoyed seeing Contador take it so seriously, and the joy on his face when he crossed the final few m in Milan. To be honest other than the deaths, the Giro was only about one rider, but performances from Nieve struggling to raise an arm, and Kiriyenka putting time into J Rod and Rujano on climbs after being all day in the break was great to see.
 
Sep 27, 2009
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spalco said:
I liked all three this year, although all had their flaws
- Giro: So much Contador awesomeness that everything else was eclipsed a little bit. And of course Wouter Weylandt.
- Tour: Great edition, but too many crashes that took out contender which resulted in an unworthy winner (imo, don't crucify me).
- Vuelta: Also very exciting and with very unexpected contenders. Hopefully the results don't get changed retroactively.
I don't need to crucify you, you just did it to yourself. An unworthy winner LOL!!!!
 

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