Opinion: Alpe d’Huez was masterful, but Strade Bianche win was Tom Pidcock’s finest yet

The stunning victory forged in the dust of Monte Sante Marie firmly eclipsed last summer's Tour de France stage winning glory

Tom Pidcock
(Image credit: Getty Images)

On Saturday afternoon, reports of a loud bang heard across England were later reported as being a sonic boom from a fighter jet, scrambling to assist a stricken aircraft. Although of course, we know that was really a cover up. What really caused such a bang was a certain 23-year-old from Leeds on a Pinarello Dogma, smashing through the gravel of Strade Bianche in such resounding style that it generated shockwaves all the way to northern Europe.

In a career that’s already seen so much glory, it’s a tough task to rank Tom Pidcock’s achievements in terms of greatness. But it’s safe to say that Saturday’s victory firmly eclipsed Alpe d’Huez glory last summer as Pidcock’s finest hour yet.

Now to some, arguing it usurped the prestige of a Tour de France stage win may seem like a bold claim. However, starting by looking at the makeup of the competition this time round proves the point that it certainly did. 

When reflecting on victory on the Alpe, Pidcock previously told CW that he “didn’t win from the best riders in the world,” although this time, it was different. Yes, he’s beaten Wout van Aert before, but this was a class above. What unfolded on Saturday on the Monte Sante Marie was an unrelenting, bestial attack from the peloton on the races decisive five-star gravel sector to make a difference. Not simply winning a final sprint at Brabantse Pijl

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Tom Thewlis

Tom has been writing for Cycling Weekly since 2022 and his news stories, rider interviews and features appear both online and in the magazine. 

Since joining the team, he has reported from some of professional cycling's biggest races and events including the Tour de France and the World Championships in Glasgow. He has also covered races elsewhere across the world. 

As well as on the ground reporting, Tom writes race reports from the men's and women's WorldTour and helps with coverage of UK domestic cycling.