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The greatest classic rider of the 21st century

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Who is the best classics specialist of this century?

  • Paolo Bettini

    Votes: 36 26.9%
  • Tom Boonen

    Votes: 40 29.9%
  • Fabian Cancellara

    Votes: 35 26.1%
  • Philippe Gilbert

    Votes: 12 9.0%
  • Alejandro Valverde

    Votes: 9 6.7%
  • Oscar Freire

    Votes: 2 1.5%

  • Total voters
    134
Aug 16, 2013
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Re: Re:

Netserk said:
Flamin said:
Lol if you consider Boonen's solo in 2012 similar to Canc in 2010.
Obviously, Boonen's was better since it was both longer and he didn't have to attack when his rivals was at the back of the group. :p

Tbf, Boonen got clear with Terpstra after Pippo just let a gap on the flat because he was chatting with Ballan ;)
 
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Flamin said:
Lol if you consider Boonen's solo in 2012 similar to Canc in 2010.
Boonen at least had somebody chasing him :eek:

But seriously, all that stuff only makes it more subjective, and you only think that's important cause you like Canc more. In classics, the only thing that Canc has over Boonen is 1 MSR win, and Boonen has 1 PR, 1 WCRR, and a lot of other cobbled classics over Canc. As I said before, no amount of Strade Bianchi's is gonna change that
 
Jul 16, 2010
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Re: Re:

CheckMyPecs said:
El Pistolero said:
CheckMyPecs said:
Including a rider as one-dimensional as Boonen here is a joke.

Gent-Wevelgem, the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix are actually three very different races.
Cobbles, cobbles, cobbles.

I guess the Ronde and LBL are both the same as well then: hills, hills and hills. They both even have cobbles as well. :eek:
 
Mar 13, 2015
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And what about this fascination of Cancellara's Mendrisio ride!He rode strong on the hills (he can do that sometimes, when in top shape), he pulled like a madman and then of course when he couldn't get a gap (cause hills ain't cobbles) he ended up 5th. What a spectacular ride!!! :lol: Give me a break! He never even got a medal in the biggest one-day race and he tried frequently, yet some call him the best classics rider. Bettini and Boonen are just class above him
 
Aug 16, 2013
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Re:

Mr.White said:
And what about this fascination of Cancellara's Mendrisio ride!He rode strong on the hills (he can do that sometimes, when in top shape), he pulled like a madman and then of course when he couldn't get a gap (cause hills ain't cobbles) he ended up 5th. What a spectacular ride!!! :lol: Give me a break! He never even got a medal in the biggest one-day race and he tried frequently, yet some call him the best classics rider. Bettini and Boonen are just class above him

You know that's not true. I mean, you can have the opinion Bettini and Boonen are better then him. But not a class above. Minimal differences.
 
Re: Re:

El Pistolero said:
CheckMyPecs said:
El Pistolero said:
CheckMyPecs said:
Including a rider as one-dimensional as Boonen here is a joke.

Gent-Wevelgem, the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix are actually three very different races.
Cobbles, cobbles, cobbles.

I guess the Ronde and LBL are both the same as well then: hills, hills and hills. They both even have cobbles as well. :eek:
You're missing the point that Scheldeprijs and the Giro are the same as well, both are ridden on bikes ffs
 
Mar 13, 2015
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Re:

El Pistolero said:
I'm really curious how those two Valverde voters can justify their choice. :eek:

He's easily the weakest on this list.

I didn't vote for him, but I easily could. He's the only GT guy among these, and he rode classics way less then other guys, and he didn't specifically prepare himself for these races only, unlike all others. So yes, I could argue that he would have won much more if he specially targeted only classics
 
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CheckMyPecs said:
Including a rider as one-dimensional as Boonen here is a joke.
If you would complain about Valverde being on this list, because he has only won 3 monuments, I would understand it. If you would complain about Gilbert I would find it strange but okay. But complaining about Tom Boonen a rider who has won 7 monuments and one WC is just ridiculous. And the reason even more. You wrote later that you wouldn't include him because he won 7 out of 8 on cobbles? Well Cancellara also won 6 out of his 7 big wins on cobbles so what's your point. Valverde has never won a different monument than LBL, so why is he not a one-dimensional classic rider?
 
Jul 16, 2010
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Re: Re:

Mr.White said:
El Pistolero said:
I'm really curious how those two Valverde voters can justify their choice. :eek:

He's easily the weakest on this list.

I didn't vote for him, but I easily could. He's the only GT guy among these, and he rode classics way less then other guys, and he didn't specifically prepare himself for these races only, unlike all others. So yes, I could argue that he would have won much more if he specially targeted only classics

This thread is about greatest classic rider, not about what if rider "x" did "y"...

He rides a lot of classics... The WC route almost always suits him unlike the other guys...
 
Aug 16, 2013
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Re: Re:

Mr.White said:
El Pistolero said:
I'm really curious how those two Valverde voters can justify their choice. :eek:

He's easily the weakest on this list.

I didn't vote for him, but I easily could. He's the only GT guy among these, and he rode classics way less then other guys, and he didn't specifically prepare himself for these races only, unlike all others. So yes, I could argue that he would have won much more if he specially targeted only classics

He rides all the classics he is suited to: Strade, Amstel, Fleche, Liege, Clasica and Lombardia. And he specially building his peak shape to the Ardennes classics from 2006 till this year. Only this year the Giro was a bigger objective.

Every year, the biggest goals in the spring are the Amstel, Fleche and Liege. And he won a total of 7. 3 monuments and 4 FW's. That's really good, but not in the league of Boonen, Cancellara or Bettini.

It's not that Valverde is some kind of alien. He has lost plenty of classics because other riders were stronger.
 
Re: Re:

Mr.White said:
El Pistolero said:
I'm really curious how those two Valverde voters can justify their choice. :eek:

He's easily the weakest on this list.

I didn't vote for him, but I easily could. He's the only GT guy among these, and he rode classics way less then other guys, and he didn't specifically prepare himself for these races only, unlike all others. So yes, I could argue that he would have won much more if he specially targeted only classics
The fact that he is also a gt guy doesn't mean anything when we discuss the greatest classic rider. And although he maybe really could have won more if he had only focussed we are talking about results not what could have happened.
 
Re: Re:

El Pistolero said:
Flamin said:
Mindboggling that Boonen has more votes than Canc :eek:

That's because he won more (and bigger) one-day races than Cancellara.

Boonen won more, because he has a weapon called a good sprint which Cancellara doesnt have. Cancellara is a imo stronger and much more complete rider. Boonen has more big wins though and those count.

I must admit that between 2000 - 2009 i didnt watch anything besides the Tour and Boonen was a stronger rider in those years then after 2010.
 
Mar 13, 2015
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Re: Re:

Arredondo said:
Mr.White said:
El Pistolero said:
I'm really curious how those two Valverde voters can justify their choice. :eek:

He's easily the weakest on this list.

I didn't vote for him, but I easily could. He's the only GT guy among these, and he rode classics way less then other guys, and he didn't specifically prepare himself for these races only, unlike all others. So yes, I could argue that he would have won much more if he specially targeted only classics

He rides all the classics he is suited to: Strade, Amstel, Fleche, Liege, Clasica and Lombardia. And he specially building his peak shape to the Ardennes classics from 2006 till this year. Only this year the Giro was a bigger objective.

Every year, the biggest goals in the spring are the Amstel, Fleche and Liege. And he won a total of 7. 3 monuments and 4 FW's. That's really good, but not in the league of Boonen, Cancellara or Bettini.

It's not that Valverde is some kind of alien. He has lost plenty of classics because other riders were stronger.

Yeah but he never targeted Lombardia for example(sadly he isn't going to do it this year also :sad: ), and that race suits him down to the ground. And he didn't rode it 6 years, 2007-2012. He never showed up in Canadian races, Plouay... and he could have maybe won them. He targets Ardennes only, but even for them he doesn't arrive as fresh as for example Gilbert, or Gerrans, because he rides almost every race for a top placement. That's his blessing and his curse at the same time. I'm not saying he would be on Boonen or Bettini's level for sure, I'm just arguing that maybe he would if he specialized one-day racing only, like those guys.
 
Mar 13, 2015
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Re: Re:

Kwibus said:
El Pistolero said:
Flamin said:
Mindboggling that Boonen has more votes than Canc :eek:

That's because he won more (and bigger) one-day races than Cancellara.

Boonen won more, because he has a weapon called a good sprint which Cancellara doesnt have. Cancellara is a imo stronger and much more complete rider. Boonen has more big wins though and those count.

I must admit that between 2000 - 2009 i didnt watch anything besides the Tour and Boonen was a stronger rider in those years then after 2010.

And that's a weapon that great classics riders should have ;)
 
Re: Re:

Red Rick said:
Flamin said:
Lol if you consider Boonen's solo in 2012 similar to Canc in 2010.
Boonen at least had somebody chasing him :eek:

But seriously, all that stuff only makes it more subjective, and you only think that's important cause you like Canc more. In classics, the only thing that Canc has over Boonen is 1 MSR win, and Boonen has 1 PR, 1 WCRR, and a lot of other cobbled classics over Canc. As I said before, no amount of Strade Bianchi's is gonna change that

Boonen could have chased Canc you know, but we both know he couldn't (nobody could) so everyone just started staring at each other ;)

And like I said, quality matters. The whole picture should be looked at. Boonen might have the slightly better palmares, but Cancellara beat him in his prime and could most certainly have won a few more monuments if he had a decent team (2011) or didn't crash in one of his super years (2012). Canc was on another level from 2010-2013, a level Boonen never reached.

And like I also said, Canc is better in hilly classics, which gets totally ignored when only looking at palmares.
 
Feb 6, 2016
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Re: Re:

Mr.White said:
Kwibus said:
El Pistolero said:
Flamin said:
Mindboggling that Boonen has more votes than Canc :eek:

That's because he won more (and bigger) one-day races than Cancellara.

Boonen won more, because he has a weapon called a good sprint which Cancellara doesnt have. Cancellara is a imo stronger and much more complete rider. Boonen has more big wins though and those count.

I must admit that between 2000 - 2009 i didnt watch anything besides the Tour and Boonen was a stronger rider in those years then after 2010.

And that's a weapon that great classics riders should have ;)
Yeah, you can't invalidate Boonen's wins because his niche is a fast finish, whereas Cance's is his flat power. Doesn't mean you're stronger just because you're a TTer, not a sprinter (especially since Boonen has great soloed, and Cance's won his share of sprints.)
 
Re: Re:

Mr.White said:
Kwibus said:
El Pistolero said:
Flamin said:
Mindboggling that Boonen has more votes than Canc :eek:

That's because he won more (and bigger) one-day races than Cancellara.

Boonen won more, because he has a weapon called a good sprint which Cancellara doesnt have. Cancellara is a imo stronger and much more complete rider. Boonen has more big wins though and those count.

I must admit that between 2000 - 2009 i didnt watch anything besides the Tour and Boonen was a stronger rider in those years then after 2010.

And that's a weapon that great classics riders should have ;)

Canc does have a very decent sprint tho. Obviously not as good as Boonen's, but I have been surprised a few times seeing how he is able to mix it up from time to time.
 
Re:

Flamin said:
And btw, Canc would have taken the record if not for a superb Sagan. Who did Boonen face again in Roubaix yet failed to do so? :) see? Just so many factors play a role in classics, it's silly to only look at the palmares.
If Boonen hadn't crashed in 2013, he would have won the double. The only objective way to look at this, is to only look at the palmares.