The British rider jumps nine places in the ranking above Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe), who gathered enough points in the Vuelta to sit in second place despite not winning a stage.
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The world champion sits just 80 points behind Yates, with his three Tour de France stage victories and points classification win, Paris-Roubaix and Ghent-Wevelgem wins – as well as his consistent ability to finish in the top-10 in races – having put him in a commanding position in the rankings ahead of the Vuelta.
Yates can also point to a consistent season for putting him top spot. As well as his successful Vuelta, the 26-year-old took a stage win at Paris-Nice and finished second overall, a stage win at the Volta a Catalunya, and three stages at the Giro d’Italia.
Both Sagan and Yates will likely end their seasons at the Road World Championships road race in Innsbruck, which doesn’t contribute points to the WorldTour ranking.
Alejandor Valverde (Movistar) sits in third place on 2,539 points to Yates’ 3,072, with just three ranking events remaining.
With Valverde also likely to end a long season with the Worlds road race, to win the WorldTour ranking he would need to place highly in the year’s final Monument, Il Lombardia and potentially collect points in stage race the Tour of Guangxi. The Tour of Turkey is also a WorldTour event, but the penultimate stage clashes with Il Lombardia on October 13.
Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) is in fourth, but will definitely not threaten Yates’ position in top spot after ending his season at the Tour of Britain.
Just behind him on 2,442.14 points sits Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing), who, like Valverde, would need to put in a huge effort in the end of the season and potentially win Il Lombardia to overhaul Yates. Likewise Michael Matthews (Sunweb), who would have to go on an extraordinary run in the final races of the year to pick up enough points to make up the 678.81 point deficit.
The remaining WorldTour races, the Tour of Turkey takes place on October 9-14, Il Lombardia on October 13 and the Tour of Guangxi on October 16-21.
In the team ranking, Quick-Step Floors are set to win after another incredible season of victories puts them at 12,863.97 to second place Team Sky’s tally of 9,753.
UCI WorldTour ranking (Individual)
1 Simon Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott, 3,072pts
2 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe, 2,992
3 Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, 2,539
4 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky, 2,534.25
5 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing, 2442.14
6 Elia Viviani (Ita) Quick-Step Floors, 2399
7 Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb, 2,393.19
8 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors, 2,161.12
9 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky, 1,956.68
10 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb, 1975.62