THIS IS THE AGE OF SA­GAN

Procycling - - Review Of The Year 2016 -

Eddy Mer­ckx was the rider of the 1970s, Bernard Hin­ault the rider of the 1980s, Miguel In­durain the rider of the 1990s and, well, Lance Arm­strong was the rider of the 2000s. Though Mark Cavendish had a good claim on be­ing the rider of the cur­rent decade, for the way he trans­formed sprint­ing, it looks like Peter Sa­gan may leave an even big­ger im­pres­sion on the sport in the end.

It’s not just be­cause Sa­gan is win­ning a lot of bike races that he is the cen­tre of at­ten­tion in cy­cling at the mo­ment. He’s as fa­mous for not win­ning as he is for win­ning, with mul­ti­ple near-misses through­out his ca­reer, in­clud­ing this sea­son. But the man­ner of his rac­ing, the pony-tailed and bearded look he has cul­ti­vated and the off­beat be­hav­iour away from the bike all make him cy­cling’s num­ber one star. His Flan­ders, Worlds and Tour green jer­sey suc­cesses are enough to make him the rider of the year but, un­usu­ally, Sa­gan is also the story when he doesn’t win.

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