We take a look at why Greg Van Avermaet has made it in as number three in the 100 Best Road Riders of 2017

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3. Greg Van Avermaet

Age 32, Belgium, BMC Racing
2017 wins: 8

Olympic glory aside, Greg Van Avermaet’s season every year pretty much lives or dies by how well he does in the spring campaign.

A regular podium finisher in the Classics, 2017 will go down as the year GVA began to make his way a true great of the spring one-day races.

It kicked off with a powerful sprint finish to beat arch-rival Peter Sagan at the newly WorldTour Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, before a trip to Italy saw him miss out on victory at Strade Bianche only to an in-form Michal Kwiatkowski.

Next up was a controlled performance to beat Belgian champion Philippe Gilbert and Oliver Naesen at E3 Harelbeke, before taking victory at Ghent-Wevelgem two days later.

The BMC man’s big hopes was to finally add the Tour of Flanders to his palmarès, but a sensational 55km solo effort from Gilbert and a late crash on the Oude Kwaremont put paid to that, but it was almost more impressive that he still managed to grab second.

Greg Van Avermaet sprints to victory at the 2017 E3 Harelbeke (Sunada)

Despite all the victories he’d so far amassed, that loss would have come as a major blow to Van Avermaet’s spring, although he wouldn’t have long to wait to finally get his name on a Monument.

Another crash at particularly cagey (but fast) addition of Paris-Roubaix looked to have dented his chances before the race had really begun in earnest. But Van Avermaet persevered with the help of team-mate Daniel Oss to out-sprint Zdenek Stybar for victory in the Roubaix velodrome.

A third place finisher in 2015, Van Avermaet had never quite shown the promise in the Hell of the North as he had at Flanders, but his victory there well-and-truly crowned him the King of the Classics and as one of the best riders of 2017.

 

  • J1

    Still, one third Belgian and one third Aussie 🙂

  • MrHaematocrit

    From the age of two Wiggo lived in Kilburn north west london as such his formative years and influence was British which is why he associates with British culture like rock & mods. Froome was not influenced by British culture during his formative years. He identify’s with African culture. His TDF bike did not feature a endangered British Tortoiseshell butterfly it featured a rhino which he campaigns to save having been exposed to them in his formative years…. I get where Andrew is coming from.

  • J1

    Born to British parents, makes him just a little bit British, he may have lived in Africa as a kid but I’d consider that British.

    Do you say the same about Wiggins? Born in Belgium, to an Australian Father and a British mother don’t forget.

  • Andrew Bairsto

    I do not care but he does and try as can I can not get over myself dumbo.

  • Vince Chittenden

    who cares. This list is about best riders, irrespective of their nationality. Get over yourself.

  • Andrew Bairsto

    Never convince me he is British.