# Velo d’Or 2023

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## Who will win?

• ### Netserk

• Total voters
169

#### Devil's Elbow

Certainly interesting but in order to test this type of formula you need to have multiple sets of data. I'd be curious to see what this would yield if you did it for say, the last 25-30 years as it'a always dangerous to come up with a formula which yields what you feel to be the correct answer for only 1 set of data. While I always find this kind of thing interesting ,for something like this award I generally prefer a subjective vote. Any formula you come up with is going to have holes and you're going to get strange winners at times.
I think both have their value. A quantitative approach is inherently going to miss nuances, a vote is inherently going to be skewed by rider popularity. So they are complementary to an extent.

Red Rick and jaylew

#### Tonton

The problem is you have guys like Vingegaard getting beat by Gaudu in PN, and likewise Gaudu barely being top 10 in the Tour when it matters. It’s hard to take those races seriously when most of the top dogs don’t even take them that seriously.
Disagree. They take it seriously when another big dog is on the start-list. Teddy dominated Paris-Nice. Jonas didn't want to be on the receiving end of a beating like this. He took it seriously.

#### jaylew

100/1 = 100 for 1st
100/2 = 50 for 2nd (50 less than for 1st)
100/3 = 33.3 for 3rd (16.7 less than for 2nd)
100/4 = 25 for 4th (8.3 less than for 3rd)
100/5 = 20 for 5th (5 less than for 4th)

So the gap from 1st to 2nd is larger than the gap from 2nd to 3rd, and the gap from 3rd to 4th is larger than the gap from 4th to 5th.
Yes, I see what you're saying. It's not exactly what I'm talking about but I don't hate it.

I think both have their value. A quantitative approach is inherently going to miss nuances, a vote is inherently going to be skewed by rider popularity. So they are complementary to an extent.
Yep. Maybe you do it like they do they do in some sports where both a formula and a vote are factored into the result. Maybe you weight them each 50%. The thing I like about including the subjective in an "athlete of the year" type award is that you can account for things like how a person won, by what margin, how strong was the field, etc...

Edit: I'm also not seeing other disciplines in these formulas and apparently those are part of the award. How do you figure in stuff like a CX or Mtb world title, world cup wins, etc...

#### Armchair Cyclist

Moderator
Enormous amount of effort being put into discussion of objective criteria for a subjective choice by people who are not part of the discussion.

I'm not sure what sort of CN does CQ rider of the year is being constructed here, but it is not the Velo d'Or.

Tonton

#### Devil's Elbow

Edit: I'm also not seeing other disciplines in these formulas and apparently those are part of the award. How do you figure in stuff like a CX or Mtb world title, world cup wins, etc...
Other disciplines, are irrelevant to the VdO in practice because non-road cyclists have ever been close to winning it.

Enormous amount of effort being put into discussion of objective criteria for a subjective choice by people who are not part of the discussion.

I'm not sure what sort of CN does CQ rider of the year is being constructed here, but it is not the Velo d'Or.
You’re right, it’s the Forum d’Or.

#### jaylew

Other disciplines, are irrelevant to the VdO in practice because non-road cyclists have ever been close to winning it.
Doesn't mean they shouldn't be considered though. PFP got 3rd last year based solely on her off-road exploits. I don't think he will but if Mathieu was to win Worlds this week on the mtb I'm pretty sure the voters would factor in the fact that he won the 3 World titles this year. Not necessarily saying it should, but it would be one of those talking points that could possibly even overcome a JV Vuelta win. It would get a ton of pub and be something the voters at least thought about.

Axel Hangleck

#### houtdffan

Basically I would make points structures much more top heavy.

Tour = 100 points
Giro = 80 points
Vuelta + Worlds = 70 points
Monuments = 60 points

Points scored is points/position - i.e. Tour GC winner gets 100 points, 5th gets 20 points, 10th gets 10 points.

10 places count

Big 7 stage races + all the AGR, FW, GW, E3, Strade, CSS, Worlds ITT, one days = 30 points
Points scored is points/position, but only 5 places count

Stage win in WT stage race is 1/10th of overall GC win
KoM or Points classification in GC is 1/10th of overall GC win

Any races below, like BingoBongo, Poland, or the Kuure Brussel Kuurnes, or Tre Vallis are whatever.

My main issue is a PN/TA win should be worth far more than half an MSR win. I'd put PN/TA on the same level of an MSR

Sandisfan

#### proffate

If the fashion of a victory matters, and I think it should, then MVDP must get bonus points for the fact that every single one of his wins was absolute domination in the face of world class competition. Races like MSR and worlds and even Roubaix often have enough luck involved that the victory/podium can go to dark horses. Not this year --- Mathieu rode away from select groups of generational classics specialists and watt monsters as if they were NPCs.

Vinge dominated the tour as well but did not ride with sufficient panache to be on par, and besides, he only beat one generational talent.

I think in the eyes of some (who honestly don't understand the sport), his anonymous ride at the tdf will count against him. But the fact that he races into fitness rather than in a lodge on top of some volcano is a silly thing to penalize.

#### Netserk

4th places anywhere and stage wins/2nd places at second-tier races are pretty irrelevant when it comes to comparing the very best. Nobody is picking Van der Poel over Vingegaard because of a second place at E3, and nobody is picking Vingegaard over Van der Poel because of 3 stage wins at Itzulia.

For me, this is a good season to use for tweaking a numerical approach because it's very easy to accidentally put Pogacar in 1st. For example, in Red Rick's system, you get the following:
Pogacar - 30 + 3*3 from Paris-Nice, 15 from Sanremo, 10 from E3, 60 from Ronde, 30 from Amstel, 30 from Flèche, 50 + 2*10 from the Tour and 23.3 from the Worlds makes 277.3 points
Van der Poel - 60 from Sanremo, 15 from E3, 30 from Ronde, 60 from Roubaix and 70 from the Worlds makes 235 points
Vingegaard - 10 from Paris-Nice, 30 + 3*3 from Itzulia, 30 + 3*2 from Dauphiné and 100 + 10*2 from the Tour makes 205 points

So the system doesn't do what he thinks it should do given that he's said Van der Poel has this locked down. Not a criticism, because as I said previously, that happens really easily this year.

Here's what I'd suggest purely for Vélo d'Or purposes. Key considerations:
- 2 monument wins > any singular first place
- Monument win > any singular second place
- Biggest one-week stage races = biggest non-monument/WC one-day races
- Lower placements are irrelevant
- Multiple big wins in the same season have a stacking effect

Tour - 100, 40 and 20 points for the top-3, 15 points for the points classification and 10 points for stage wins and the KOM classification

Giro and Vuelta - 80, 32 and 16 points for the top-3, 8 points for a minor classification or stage win

Worlds (and Olympics, when applicable) RR - 70, 30 and 15 points for the top-3

Monuments - 60, 24 and 12 points for the top-3

2 wins total in the above - multiply winning points by 1.2. 3 - by 1.5. 4 - by 2. 5 - by 3. Don't think provisions for more are required.

Big 7 one-week stage races (Paris-Nice, Tirreno, Catalunya, Itzulia, Romandie, Dauphiné, Suisse), main other classics (Strade, E3, GW, Amstel, Flèche, CSS), and Worlds (and Olympics) TT - 30 points for the winner

For this season so far, that would give a top-10 of:
Van der Poel - (70 + 60 + 60)*1.5 + 24 = 309
Pogacar - 40 + 2*10 + 15 + 60 + 30 + 30 + 30 = 225
Vingegaard - 100 + 2*10 + 30 + 30 = 180
Roglic - 80 + 8 + 30 + 30 = 148
Evenepoel - 8*2 + 60 + 30 = 106
Van Aert - 30 + 12 + 12 + 30 = 84
Philipsen - 15 + 10*4 + 24 = 79
A Yates - 20 + 10 + 30 = 60
Pidcock - 24 + 30 = 54
Thomas - 32
(with Pedersen and Skjelmose both at 30)

Which seems pretty reasonable to me. The biggest complaint you could make is that Pogacar shouldn't have a quarter more points than Vingegaard - again, kind of inherent to a quantitative system because he's been up there in so many big races. Same issue that puts Valverde as the best rider of this century in so many rankings.

And if Vingegaard were to win the Vuelta, he goes to (100 + 80)*1.2 + 2*10 + 30 + 30 = 296. Meaning he'd need 2 stage wins in addition to that to barely beat Van der Poel in this system. Such a narrow margin is IMO what you should want out of your approach in that scenario.

Of course, you could argue that Vingegaard's winning margin in the Tour means that his Tour should count more heavily than usual but that sort of consideration makes quantification far too complicated.
2015:

152 - Degenkolb
150 - Froome
128 - Aru
126 - Valverde
102 - Purito
88 - Sagan
84 - Kristoff
70 - Quintana
70 - Nibali
60 - Porte

#### Red Rick

4th places anywhere and stage wins/2nd places at second-tier races are pretty irrelevant when it comes to comparing the very best. Nobody is picking Van der Poel over Vingegaard because of a second place at E3, and nobody is picking Vingegaard over Van der Poel because of 3 stage wins at Itzulia.

For me, this is a good season to use for tweaking a numerical approach because it's very easy to accidentally put Pogacar in 1st. For example, in Red Rick's system, you get the following:
Pogacar - 30 + 3*3 from Paris-Nice, 15 from Sanremo, 10 from E3, 60 from Ronde, 30 from Amstel, 30 from Flèche, 50 + 2*10 from the Tour and 23.3 from the Worlds makes 277.3 points
Van der Poel - 60 from Sanremo, 15 from E3, 30 from Ronde, 60 from Roubaix and 70 from the Worlds makes 235 points
Vingegaard - 10 from Paris-Nice, 30 + 3*3 from Itzulia, 30 + 3*2 from Dauphiné and 100 + 10*2 from the Tour makes 205 points

So the system doesn't do what he thinks it should do given that he's said Van der Poel has this locked down. Not a criticism, because as I said previously, that happens really easily this year.

Here's what I'd suggest purely for Vélo d'Or purposes. Key considerations:
- 2 monument wins > any singular first place
- Monument win > any singular second place
- Biggest one-week stage races = biggest non-monument/WC one-day races
- Lower placements are irrelevant
- Multiple big wins in the same season have a stacking effect

Tour - 100, 40 and 20 points for the top-3, 15 points for the points classification and 10 points for stage wins and the KOM classification

Giro and Vuelta - 80, 32 and 16 points for the top-3, 8 points for a minor classification or stage win

Worlds (and Olympics, when applicable) RR - 70, 30 and 15 points for the top-3

Monuments - 60, 24 and 12 points for the top-3

2 wins total in the above - multiply winning points by 1.2. 3 - by 1.5. 4 - by 2. 5 - by 3. Don't think provisions for more are required.

Big 7 one-week stage races (Paris-Nice, Tirreno, Catalunya, Itzulia, Romandie, Dauphiné, Suisse), main other classics (Strade, E3, GW, Amstel, Flèche, CSS), and Worlds (and Olympics) TT - 30 points for the winner

For this season so far, that would give a top-10 of:
Van der Poel - (70 + 60 + 60)*1.5 + 24 = 309
Pogacar - 40 + 2*10 + 15 + 60 + 30 + 30 + 30 = 225
Vingegaard - 100 + 2*10 + 30 + 30 = 180
Roglic - 80 + 8 + 30 + 30 = 148
Evenepoel - 8*2 + 60 + 30 = 106
Van Aert - 30 + 12 + 12 + 30 = 84
Philipsen - 15 + 10*4 + 24 = 79
A Yates - 20 + 10 + 30 = 60
Pidcock - 24 + 30 = 54
Thomas - 32
(with Pedersen and Skjelmose both at 30)

Which seems pretty reasonable to me. The biggest complaint you could make is that Pogacar shouldn't have a quarter more points than Vingegaard - again, kind of inherent to a quantitative system because he's been up there in so many big races. Same issue that puts Valverde as the best rider of this century in so many rankings.

And if Vingegaard were to win the Vuelta, he goes to (100 + 80)*1.2 + 2*10 + 30 + 30 = 296. Meaning he'd need 2 stage wins in addition to that to barely beat Van der Poel in this system. Such a narrow margin is IMO what you should want out of your approach in that scenario.

Of course, you could argue that Vingegaard's winning margin in the Tour means that his Tour should count more heavily than usual but that sort of consideration makes quantification far too complicated.
I like it, but I think it does give a huge bias to one day racers. My system did too, but this one is bigger.

The problem is the opportunity cost of Grand Tours and stage races, and how little GTs pay off unless you win a double. GT doubles are much rarer than monument or one day doubles.

#### Armchair Cyclist

Moderator
Other disciplines, are irrelevant to the VdO in practice because non-road cyclists have ever been close to winning it.
That is precisely what we do not know, because we don't know what is in the minds of the voters. And insofar as much of preference is subliminal, neither do they.

#### Blanco

I like it, but I think it does give a huge bias to one day racers. My system did too, but this one is bigger.

The problem is the opportunity cost of Grand Tours and stage races, and how little GTs pay off unless you win a double. GT doubles are much rarer than monument or one day doubles.
Yeah, Tour win must be worth 2 monuments, while Giro/Vuelta double for example must worth approx. 3 monuments.

#### Devil's Elbow

2015:

152 - Degenkolb
150 - Froome
128 - Aru
126 - Valverde
102 - Purito
88 - Sagan
84 - Kristoff
70 - Quintana
70 - Nibali
60 - Porte
IMO that’s still in the ballpark of what I want my system to do. As I said earlier, I value a monument double over a Tour win, and then Tour stage + KOM + Dauphiné is enough to put them broadly equal. And I don’t think either is a clear #1 that season, just like there isn’t in this outcome. And Aru and Valverde almost tied for third also seems right to me,
I like it, but I think it does give a huge bias to one day racers. My system did too, but this one is bigger.

The problem is the opportunity cost of Grand Tours and stage races, and how little GTs pay off unless you win a double. GT doubles are much rarer than monument or one day doubles.
On the other hand, I do give points to GT stage wins when I don’t for races like Omloop.

Yes, GT doubles are pretty rare, but at the same time it’s not uncommon for someone to win a GT and a monument in the same year. Also, giving more weight to GT wins and especially GT doubles would mean a Vingegaard Tour + Vuelta double this season would easily beat Van der Poel’s season which I don’t think is right.

#### Axel Hangleck

Other disciplines, are irrelevant to the VdO in practice because non-road cyclists have ever been close to winning it.
Which tells you everything; Schurter has somehow never won it......even in 2017 when he won everything possible. The majority of cycle journalists are road biased who need to broaden their horizons a bit.

#### Red Rick

IMO that’s still in the ballpark of what I want my system to do. As I said earlier, I value a monument double over a Tour win, and then Tour stage + KOM + Dauphiné is enough to put them broadly equal. And I don’t think either is a clear #1 that season, just like there isn’t in this outcome. And Aru and Valverde almost tied for third also seems right to me,

On the other hand, I do give points to GT stage wins when I don’t for races like Omloop.

Yes, GT doubles are pretty rare, but at the same time it’s not uncommon for someone to win a GT and a monument in the same year. Also, giving more weight to GT wins and especially GT doubles would mean a Vingegaard Tour + Vuelta double this season would easily beat Van der Poel’s season which I don’t think is right.
Vingegaard winning with a Tour-Vuelta double isn't outrageous. It would be the best GC rider season this century at least, arguably better than Pantani if we decide winning Itzulia and Dauphine is more important than the gap between Giro/Tour and Tour/Vuelta. Van der Poel meanwhile hasn't had the best classics season of the century, being eclipsed by Boonens 2005 season. If Vingegaard wins with 2 stages and just about gets there, I would definitely take him over MvdP in Velo d'Or. And in this case, Vingegaard would have only missed some points in Paris-Nice, while MvdP basically skipped a heap of easy points in the non monuments classics.

I think 2013 and 2015 make a decent case for Velo d'Or not rewarding the cobbled double so much. Arguably 2012 as well. And I do think the cobbled double is a bit too easy to merit 144 points in this system. At the same time, I think strong Giro-Vuelta doubles have always gotten shafted and that's still the same. Maybe strong Giro/Vuelta doubles are historically too common though.

Finally, non monument classics probably score points too easily still, because when you're good you can race so many of them. The stage races are pretty limited in how many you can race and do well in.

I'm pretty sure we still end up with Simon Gerrans for Velo d'Or 2014.

#### Netserk

I think higher points for the top tier wins works better than bonuses for how many you win of them. Or different kind of bonuses, as I really don't think a monument and a GT per se is better than the sum of them (but then again, it's quite different if it is Liège-Vuelta, Giro-Lombardia or Roubaix-Tour). Likewise, I don't think Giro-Vuelta is more than the sum of them, but I do think back-to-back GTs are, especially Giro-Tour.

Winning Sanremo-Ronde-Roubaix would be super impressive, but for the right rider it's mostly a question of circumstances, and the WCRR depends a lot on the route. It's not a disadvantage in Roubaix that you have ridden and won in Sanremo and Ronde previously. Winning the Tour after having won the Giro is a whole other kettle of fish.

Giro + Tour: (80 + 100)*1.2 = 216
Sanremo + Ronde + Roubaix = (60 + 60 + 60)*1.5 = 270

The gap between them is equivalent to 3 Giro stages and 3 Tour stages. So Pantani's double is behind 3 monuments.

With the higher bonus, an additional one-day race gives an absurd amount of points. The 3rd one is worth 126 points, a 4th would be worth 210 points on its own. Winning the Vuelta after the Tour is worth merely an additional 116 points (and so that is also the difference between a Tour victory alone and the Giro-Tour double).

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#### Netserk

I think a bonus would be in order if you combine a cobbled monument with a hilly one. More with Roubaix than with Ronde. Maybe I'll include Sanremo with the cobbled monuments.

Likewise, I can see why one of the first three together with a GT should warrant a bonus, but that's it.

#### Red Rick

I think a bonus would be in order if you combine a cobbled monument with a hilly one. More with Roubaix than with Ronde.

Likewise, I can see why one of the first three together with a GT should warrant a bonus, but that's it.
Bonuses for individual combos just becomes too much work also a bit too subjective IMO.

I'm fine with a bit of a bonus system, but I wouldn't make it as aggressive. 1.1x for 2, 1.2x for 3, etc. 3 monuments would be huge, but still be beatable if it's accompanied by nothing else.

#### gregrowlerson

I think higher points for the top tier wins works better than bonuses for how many you win of them. Or different kind of bonuses, as I really don't think a monument and a GT per se is better than the sum of them (but then again, it's quite different if it is Liège-Vuelta, Giro-Lombardia or Roubaix-Tour). Likewise, I don't think Giro-Vuelta is more than the sum of them, but I do think back-to-back GTs are, especially Giro-Tour.

Winning Sanremo-Ronde-Roubaix would be super impressive, but for the right rider it's mostly a question of circumstances, and the WCRR depends a lot on the route. It's not a disadvantage in Roubaix that you have ridden and won in Sanremo and Ronde previously. Winning the Tour after having won the Giro is a whole other kettle of fish.

Giro + Tour: (80 + 100)*1.2 = 216
Sanremo + Ronde + Roubaix = (60 + 60 + 60)*1.5 = 270

The gap between them is equivalent to 3 Giro stages and 3 Tour stages. So Pantani's double is behind 3 monuments.

With the higher bonus, an additional one-day race gives an absurd amount of points. The 3rd one is worth 126 points, a 4th would be worth 210 points on its own. Winning the Vuelta after the Tour is worth merely an additional 116 points (and so that is also the difference between a Tour victory alone and the Giro-Tour double).

I agree with what Netserk is saying here about a Giro-Tour double being potentially undervalued. I think an opponent has to win 4 of the top 6 one day races to be in the same conversation, whereas 2 monuments probably defeats just the Tour.

Maybe it's just a Vingegaard vs. Roglic comparison, but I don't think Giro should get 80 compared to 100 for Tour. And 2nd at Tour only half of the Giro seems too low also. Maybe 75 and 50 instead.

20 for 3rd at Tour is too low; at least it could be closer or equal to stage race wins (25 each). It certainly shouldn't only be double the points of KOM winner (which can often be a bit of a Mickey Mouse competition).

I'd keep monument wins at their high points, but possibly reduce the podium points. Not sure if podiums are worth as much to riders in monuments as they are in GT's, or in the Olympic or WCRR.

#### Devil's Elbow

Vingegaard winning with a Tour-Vuelta double isn't outrageous. It would be the best GC rider season this century at least, arguably better than Pantani if we decide winning Itzulia and Dauphine is more important than the gap between Giro/Tour and Tour/Vuelta. Van der Poel meanwhile hasn't had the best classics season of the century, being eclipsed by Boonens 2005 season. If Vingegaard wins with 2 stages and just about gets there, I would definitely take him over MvdP in Velo d'Or. And in this case, Vingegaard would have only missed some points in Paris-Nice, while MvdP basically skipped a heap of easy points in the non monuments classics.
On the other hand, Van der Poel is only the second rider post-Merckx to win Worlds + 2 monuments in the same year. GT doubles have been way more common in the same period. So Boonen having done marginally better in 2005 really isn't that good of an argument to rate Van der Poel's season below a Tour-Vuelta double.
Winning Sanremo-Ronde-Roubaix would be super impressive, but for the right rider it's mostly a question of circumstances, and the WCRR depends a lot on the route. It's not a disadvantage in Roubaix that you have ridden and won in Sanremo and Ronde previously. Winning the Tour after having won the Giro is a whole other kettle of fish.
Winning Sanremo, Ronde and Roubaix in the same year has literally never been done, so empirically that is a much harder achievement than a GT double (even Giro-Tour). If Van der Poel had pulled that out of the bag this season (and he almost did) in addition to his world title, it would have been one of the greatest seasons of all time and the greatest since at least Roche (and it arguably beats that too, in which case it would probably have been the greatest season post-Merckx).

#### Red Rick

On the other hand, Van der Poel is only the second rider post-Merckx to win Worlds + 2 monuments in the same year. GT doubles have been way more common in the same period. So Boonen having done marginally better in 2005 really isn't that good of an argument to rate Van der Poel's season below a Tour-Vuelta double.

Winning Sanremo, Ronde and Roubaix in the same year has literally never been done, so empirically that is a much harder achievement than a GT double (even Giro-Tour). If Van der Poel had pulled that out of the bag this season (and he almost did) in addition to his world title, it would have been one of the greatest seasons of all time and the greatest since at least Roche (and it arguably beats that too, in which case it would probably have been the greatest season post-Merckx).
I would think the 21st century is much more relevant than the 80s and 90s. The landscape is also way different, and the monuments are much lower variance than they have been in the past 30 years. Sanremo especially is no longer a race where classics riders are the underdog, which is gonna make combos with Ronde, Roubaix and even Liege much easier. The RvV route is much harder and favorable to a good Liege rider as well to the extent that a TdF winner and overwhelming Liege favorite actually beat MvdP there.