ED­WARD PICK­ER­ING

Procycling - - REVIEW OF THE YEAR 2018 - Ed­i­tor

BEST MALE RIDER

It’s be­tween Thomas and Froome for me, with Froome edg­ing it for the style of his Giro win and sub­se­quent third in the Tour.

BEST FE­MALE RIDER

Very hard to choose be­tween Van der Breggen and Van Vleuten. The for­mer was the best in the one-days and the lat­ter in the stage races. I’ll go with Van der Breggen, even if the headto-head bat­tle they had at La Course was shaded, spec­tac­u­larly, by Van Vleuten.

WHO ELSE IM­PRESSED?

Sagan’s Roubaix win saved his sea­son from com­par­a­tive nor­mal­ity. Nibali’s San Remo heist was my high­light of the year. And Si­mon Yates might rue his Giro ca­pit­u­la­tion, but his Vuelta win shows signs of much more to come. On the women's side, Amanda Spratt got in among the Dutch riders as the best of the rest.

BEST ONE DAY RACE

Mi­lan-San Remo. The usual seven hours of pot­ter­ing around, fol­lowed by the most ex­cit­ing and com­pelling 10 min­utes of the sea­son, bar none. And La Course, which was in­spir­ing and heart­break­ing in equal mea­sure.

BEST STAGE RACE

I was al­ready en­joy­ing the Giro be­fore stage 19 – I loved the ag­gres­sive jab­bing and punch­ing that put Si­mon Yates into pink. But Sky and Froome’s Hail Mary at­tack on the Finestre, two days from the end, which should never have worked, was grand tour rac­ing at its very best.

TEAM OF THE YEAR

Lot­toNL!Jumbo out­per­formed their bud­get, with great re­sults and a will­ing­ness to take the race to Sky at the Tour that teams with the­o­ret­i­cally bet­ter ros­ters lacked.

UP AND COM­ING RIDER

Ivan Sosa’s wins promise a great fu­ture, and Pas­cal Ack­er­mann is con­sis­tent, fast and due a ma­jor win. Less of the up, and more of the com­ing, but UAE made a good sign­ing for 2019 in Tadej Po­gacar, 19, who was fourth in the Tour of Slove­nia and #irst in the Tour de l’Avenir.

MEM­ORY OF THE YEAR

I lost my dig­nity and my dic­ta­phone in the stam­pede of jour­nal­ists chas­ing af­ter Mark Cavendish at La Rosière, when he missed the Tour’s time cut. We ran af­ter him, Key­stone Cops style, up the hill be­fore he turned around and rode back through the pant­ing throng, which parted like the Red Sea around him.

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