Your 10 favourite riders of all time

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hrotha said:
Oscar Camenzind
Frank Vandenbroucke
Ángel Madrazo
Damiano Cunego
Vincenzo Nibali (wavering)
Taylor Phinney
Wilfried Nelissen
Georg Totschnig
Niki Aebersold
(Young) Davide Rebellin

Unsure about many of these. I was much quicker to pick favourites when I was a kid.
I thought this was too bald-ish for you :p

In loose order:

Riccardo Ricco
Marco Pantani
Leonardo Piepoli (the 2008 version)
Frank Vandenbroucke (esp. the 1999 version)
Mario Cipollini
Claudio Chiapucci
Richard Virenque (esp. 1998 and before)
Djamolidine Abdoujaparov
Stefan Schumacher (the 2008 version)

Honorable Mentions:

Michele Bartoli
Tyler Hamilton
Michael Rasmussen
Iban Mayo
Bjarne Riis (the 1996 version)

If you're gonna do it, do it RIGHT! :D ;)
Sep 29, 2013
Since i start to watch cycling with total interess, in 1996... I would say

Marco Pantani - The guy that make me love cycling, that make my friend make fun of me because i use to stay home to watch 6 hours of a stage to see him...
Jan Ulrich - Just loved him. Great TT´S, fantastic guy, but lived in the armstrong era...
Virenque - I always loved is irreverence, not a top guy, but to me he was a class guy. who can forget him always in the polka dot jersey...
Riberto Heras - He was a top climber, i really enjoyed him. He was fantastic
Vinokorov - Vino wasn´t a guy made to win GT´S ( even if he do it once), but he was capable of everything. He climbed, he tt´s, he sprinted, he was fantastic...
Valverde - Of the 10 i´ve choose maybe is the one i less like, but i really admire him... He is like vino, but maybe better...He can do everything, impressive rider, impressive. Huge.
Ricco - well, i shouldn´t have choose him. He don´t deserve it, but he was until today the only guy to me, that had the "sprint" uphills and in the mountains that i Pantani had. When i saw him for the first time, i said to me... Here is the guy that will full my heart since the day " i lost Pantani". It´s a really pitty that he did what he did... He could have achieve a huge career, and be loved... Well, it´s live...
Nibali - he his to me a modern rider, capable of doing almost everything, and has the ability to win GT´S what is not easy to the guys that do everything. I love him so much.
Contador - He don´t represent to me what Pantani once was... But i love Contador and i love his way of riding. He was to me the best GT rider i see until today. He´s not a tornado in the mountains, he´s not the best TT´S but he is so complete, and so brave and inteligent that he was in the last years my favorite rider... I hope he can beat the GT´S records, even if to that he MUST forget the Tour.
Froome - Froome is a strange case... He wasn´t a top guy, and for a moment to the other he start to be the best... He´s a huge guy, fantastisc. Today he is more complete, and i love to see him ride. And who is a cycling fan can´t dislike his impressive way of climbing when he does that accelerations.

And many more, but this is my top 10.
Okay, this isn't a top-10 (or a top-anything), but rather just a random list of riders I like with the - sometimes quite weird - reasons why I like them.

Dan Craven
He's got a beard, and he's from Namibia. Yeah...

Amanuel Gebrezgabihier
I'm just looking forward to him getting into a break, or even winning, at some major race so commentators will have to pronounce his name. (Though I suppose Eritrean commentators will have an advantage. Then again, I don't watch Eritrean television that often...)

Jack Bauer
His name is Jack Bauer!

Domenico Pozzovivo
I remember when I first started noticing him back in 2012. I was basically thinking 'Huh. Who's this guy? He's tiny! Looks like he's in his early twenties, not late. Oh... and he's got/is working on a PhD. Well, why not?'
Needless to say I was really scared after his crash in the Giro last year.

David Zabriskie
Just for his general weirdness.

Esteban Chaves
Just love that smile, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy.

Linda Villumsen
The "Danish" New Zealander. Although... she is a bit of a traitor.

Amalie Dideriksen
Our best female (road) rider, might have helped making female cycling a bit more popular around here.

John Ebsen
This random, for the longest time virtually unknown around here, Danish guy who spent most of his early cycling career in Asia.

Jesper Hansen
Until last year's Tour of Norway, and then especially the Vuelta, he was in many ways the "forgotten" Dane among those left on Tinkoff after Oleg's takeover.

Jens Voigt
Just because.
I especially remember his reaction after his terrible crash at the Tour in 2009. First he was disappointed that he couldn't continue, then he was very determined to finish the Tour in 2010 - tiny yellow bike - having said that 2009 was probably gonna be his last Tour, but not wanting to end like that. Then he, of course, went on to ride in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

Johan Vansummeren
Seems like a genuinely nice guy.

Andy Schleck
Again, just seems like a genuinely nice guy. Also, I didn't like the way he was treated by the Danish public after he left Saxo, he practically went from being everyone's darling to "Nastybad Andy" who'd made the horrible crime of leaving a foreign team to ride on a team from his own country.

Lars Bak
You turn on your television, and there's Lars Bak at the front of the peloton.

Honourable Mentions. Aka, guys I wish I could've gotten to know about more.

Wouter Weylandt
His death was the wakeup call for me, making me realise that riders dying was not something that only happened in some distant unenlightened past from before everyone started wearing helmets. I still remember sitting at home in our living room watching in horror as my mother said those horrible words: "He's dead. There's too much blood!"

Xavier Tondo
More tragedy within short time. After his death I read a lot of articles describing as a nice, always smiling, guy. There was especially one which spoke of a terribly rainy stage at the 2010 Giro; nobody had been smiling when they crossed the line, except Xavi.

Antoine Demoitie
His tragic death understandably caused outrage as it was the result of yet another moto-cyclist accident in a long string.

Daan Myngheer
Not only was it unfair that someone so young had to die, the fact that it happened so close to Demoitie's death just added to the tragedy.

Gijs Verdick
Yet more tragedy. This year has just been terrible.

Stig Broeckx
The only one among the honourable mentions who's still - at least technically - alive. Hopefully we'll still be able to know more about him as a person. As for him as a rider; I honestly don't care! I don't care if he'll never ride again. There are more important things.
1. Denis Menchov
2. Vladimir Gusev
3. Pavel Tonkov
4. Johnny Hoogerland
5. Yury Trofimov
6. Claus Michael Moller
7. Jan Bakelants
8. Dries Devenyns
9. Peter Sagan
10. Mathias Frank

Some active riders I like: Sebastien Reichenbach

Some other riders I recall I liked for whatever reason: Christophe Agnolutto, Jakob Piil, Georg Totschnig, Vladimir Efimkin, Thor Hushovd, Patrice Halgand

I know plenty of these names do not make much sense but whatever. When I was a kid I used to like average riders who always jumped into breakaways and managed to win stages on decent races (this why I liked Agnolutto, Piil, Halgand and Hushovd -when he was a young rider in Crédit Agricole cramping at the end of a stage after being 200 km in a breakaway-). That is why I like Hoogerland and Bakelants as well.
Nov 17, 2013
These inspired me and gave me thrills:


There are others that inspired me and got my emotions stirring. I will probably have a different list tomorrow. How do I fit in the Cobra Chiappucci O'Grady Valverde Contador Paolini and more?
Jul 24, 2011
Fabian Cancellara
Hugo Koblet
Lance Armstrong
David Moncoutie
Nairo Quintana
Michele Scarponi
Samuel Dumoulin
Esteban Chaves
Danilo Di Luca
Davide Rebellin
Jun 28, 2015
No order
Van Impe

Chris Froome will never even come close to this list...ever!!!
Ocana - Wonderful GT rider.
Fignon - Great character on and off the bike.
Voeckler - Have made countless races more interesting.
Abdou - Fearless all or nothing sprinter.
Hoogerland - Relentless attacking, in pretty much all terrain.
Sercu - Mr Sixdays and more.
Cancellara - Great TT'er and classics rider
GVA - One of the only active "bigger" riders I really like today.

Thats only 8, so there is room for improvement.
In no particular order - riders from when I really started following pro cycling :

Peter Sagan - the most interesting rider atm by far
Jens Voigt - funny and with great racing instinct
Rolf Sørensen - Denmarks greatest oneday rider
Paolo Bettini - so versatile and a joy to follow
Laurent Jalabert - with his transformation and importance for the first Danish team in Le Tour
Michele Bartoli - a less successful Bettini
Vino - like Voigt an incredible racer
Fabian Cancellara - his attitude in the last years have diminished his status a bit,but gotta give him credit for all he's done
Alberto Contador - again a trueblood racer
Alejandro Valverde - don't really understand it myself, but he's just so darn consistent and steady. Gotta respect that.
Marco Pantani: Simply the Tupac of cycling. Cycling's best climber ever. The one to model myself on as well as as andunning example.

Michael Rasmussen: My idol. Pure climber and entertainer on the bike. Extravagante lone wolf with pure passion for cycling and huge work ethic off the bike. Has got a very charming character as well it seems nowadays. Engages himself in a project where he cycles to France with unemployed / socially struggling persons each summer with I admire. Also he got exactly the same skinny frameset that I carry around.

Lance Armstrong: Well. Lance ain't really a favorite of mine. But he simply was THE ultimate cyclist when I started watching this lovely sport. Of course he embossed me both as a fan and a cyclist. His story is impressive and shocking. Likable and sleazy. After “The Program“ I tend to understand why his awful behavior was totally legit out of his living environment. Since he finally paid the check I ain't got no hate anymore for him.

Andy Hampsten: Never saw Andy riding of course, since I'm only 26. But his famous ride on the Gavia Pass and the photo of him in the snow are epic. Comes over as a very nice person as well. Maybe I like him because he's a Green and very active in that.

Thomas Voeckler: As much as I never warmed up with Jens Voigt I liked the petite Frenchmen. I tend to have an affection for controversial persons. So of course the always attacking, always showboating and always confrontation seeking Titi makes it into my list.

Riccardo Ricco: Big entertainer. Real bad boy. When cycling became my favorite sport back in 2008 it was partly because of him. It ain't went good afterwards of course. Still a bit sad. But he's a goof as well. So yeah ...

Emanuele Sella: Boom! That's how to win a mountains jersey. Owned everyone big time on the Giro cols in 2008. Got me hooked into cycling. Still admire and thank him for that.

Phil Gilbert: My favorite classics rider. His 2011 season was pure magic. Hopefully he gets back to his best at Etixx and wins a few cobbled races (again). Always attacking and entertaining back in his golden days.

Steven Kruijswijk: Shy and down-to earth. Simply a likable pal. Pure climber with nowadays a more than decent tt. Pure aesthetic on the bike. Since I live and grew up close to the Dutch border and cycling is much bigger in the Netherlands I've got a bigger heart for Dutch cycling than for the Germans. His week in the pink jersey was a dream becoming true. Finally, my favorite Dutch cyclist leading my favorite bike race.

David Moncoutie: Monsieur Propre. The cyclist that trained by doing bike tours through the parks of Paris. Couldn't even put on a rain jacked on the bike, just like me, when he started as a professional. Still, always enjoyed riding his bike. Came back from that horrible crash that nearly ended his career. Went on to have a fantastic career fall and won the mountains jersey at the Vuelta multiple times. How couldn't I love him!?