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Rough Attempt at an All-Time Ranking

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I'm pretty sure if we pool all our resources and just keep working at it we'll find a way to get him to the top spot.

Like I'm not saying we should definitely make a top 10 equal to actually winning..... But maybe it's something that's worth considering? Just a thought.
"The second place is no good. I could allow another eight riders to get a better result, and still achieve my goal."

Valverde, probably.
 
Well, that's a great thread. I read most of the posts today and I wanted to share opinion about some of the discussions.

First, in the first few pages how much Valverde's minor wins and podiums should count? I remember something around 2018 that he'd swap most, if not all of his WC podiums for one win. Would Poulidor swap his podiums for Thomas' Tour win? Would Thomas do the same? Answers are clear. When you compare greatness (biggest) wins are what really matters. While smaller wins and podiums should count as well, they should be used to mostly split two close contenders.

Regarding "disrespecting" sprinters and throwing them out of top 100 because "they do nothing for 99% of the stage..", maybe we could apply the same logic for Rog, Valverder, Purito and take half of their wins because they don't do much for most of the stage and just outperform/outsprint their opponents it the last few hundred meters/kilometer? Granted, usually on a climb, but still...

And last about Cipo/Cav truckloads of stage wins and how they compare in the grand scale to riders like Fignon and LeMond.. I'm too young to have watched both of them and I didn't really dig how races really unfolded back in the days, but taking as example Pog this year, he could have won 5 or 6 stages had he, his team or the other teams cared enough to chase breaks the way sprinter teams do.. Rog could have 8 stage wins in this Vuelta...for the same reason.
For that reason alone I don't see reason to put much emphasis on sprint stage wins and how they compare to GT win. GT win requires you to sacrifice stages, heck even Thomas would've won the TT in his Tour and probably one or 2 stages..
Not sure how well I explained my point though.

It's very simple, when Rog, Valverde or Rodriguez win/won in a sprint, it was usually from a small group or bunch when the toughness of the race has eliminated the majority of weaker riders leaving the strongest to contest the win. Of course in such a situation, the sprinters will play their card, but they have to be good enough as a cyclist to survive the hard racing that splits the field.

That is a world away from having almost 200 riders finish in the same time as the winner in a race in which the sprinter can hide the entire way until the final 200m, then have trains lead them out. Comparing apples with oranges.

Look at the stats, over the last 30 years, apart from Indurain and Armstrong(not included on this list) all the other Top 10 stage winners in Le Tour are sprinters. Why? Even Indurain won 10 of his 12 stages in TTs. Look at another stat, over the last 30 years, riders have won 3 or more stages in a single Tour 34 times. Just 11 of those were non-sprinters. Armstrong 4 times, Pog x2, Froome, Nibali, Indurain. All were overall winners. The other 2 were Erik Dekker in 01 I think, and Wout Van Aert this year. That is why what Van Aert did was amazing, Winning a TT, mountain stage and a sprint in Paris. I had never seen that done before.

Extend that out to Giro/Vuelta and you will see a similar pattern. Look at the list of riders who have won stages in all 3 GTs, again dominated by sprinters. By awarding equal points for GT stage wins, sprinters are overly rewarded because they simply get more opportunities to win thus overinflating their standing. Quantity over quality.
 
Reactions: gregrowlerson
Well, that's a great thread. I read most of the posts today and I wanted to share opinion about some of the discussions.

First, in the first few pages how much Valverde's minor wins and podiums should count? I remember something around 2018 that he'd swap most, if not all of his WC podiums for one win.
You don't remember correctly, he said exactly the opposite. He wouldn't swap all of his podiums for a win.
 
By that logic, by awarding equal points for GC and classics wins, non-sprinters are overly rewarded because they get more opportunities to win those.
I think you should stop and think about what you are suggesting here. There is absolutely nothing stopping sprinters contesting for GTs/Classic unless they do not have the talent.. Boonen, Museeuw, Freire, Sagan, Zabel, Jalabert, Kelly, Maertens in no particular order. Fact is we don't know how good some GT riders could be at sprinting, purely because it is not worth the risk so we never see them contesting sprints.
 
I’m surprised it doesn’t go without saying that, when discussing the greatest cyclists of all time, all that matters is relative height of peak and duration of that peak. And the assumption being it’s only worth discussing peaks that are the highest in a given era. I think ranking greatest seasons and adding up those totals makes the most sense rather than adding up disparate achievements across seasons. But that’s just me.
 
I’m surprised it doesn’t go without saying that, when discussing the greatest cyclists of all time, all that matters is relative height of peak and duration of that peak. And the assumption being it’s only worth discussing peaks that are the highest in a given era. I think ranking greatest seasons and adding up those totals makes the most sense rather than adding up disparate achievements across seasons. But that’s just me.
So it's just you, yet you don't see why it doesn't go without saying?
 
Fact is we don't know how good some GT riders could be at sprinting, purely because it is not worth the risk so we never see them contesting sprints.

I remember the last stage of the 2017 Vuelta where Froome had to get involved in the sprint finish to secure the points jersey (which he would have won if he had taken 2nd ahead of Poels the day before). He came 11th, which was enough.

He also tried to sprint against Sagan once and it was not a fair fight. He seemed to save his best sprinting form for the criterium circuit where he'd beat anyone. :D
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Are you aware that you're talking about the most profilic winner for the past 20 years (apart from two sprinters)?!
For someone who has been allegedly one of the best cyclists for 20 years, his palmares is pretty weak. Indurain had a better 3 years.
I GT (the *** one) 4 monuments (the same one) and one WCRR is a pretty poor return.

It's like being enamoured with a team that constantly finished 4th in the Premier league and qualified for the CL, but never won anything.
 
Reactions: VayaVayaVaya

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