Cycling Weekly’s 100 Best Road Riders of 2017 has been announced, with Tom Dumoulin taking the top spot ahead of Anna Van Der Breggen and Greg Van Avermaet.
The decision-making process has been long and hard as we examined the seasons of the world’s best professional road riders, not just taking into account the number of victories, but a wide range of factors such as the prestige of the races and the way in which they rode.
In this video we explain why we think Tom Dumoulin deserves to be crowned the best rider of the 2018 season.
Arriving at the Grande Partenza of the Giro d’Italia in Sardinia, very few people were even tipping the Dutchman to make the podium, let alone win the race overall, but over the next three weeks he produced a brilliant display of stage race riding, eventually overhauling Nairo Quintana in the final time trial.
Dumoulin’s victory had its foundations in his time trialling, as he moved into the pink jersey after both of the race’s tests against the clock, but was finished off with his impressive climbing and dogged determination.
Climbing with riders who weighed 10kg less than him, the Team Sunweb rider managed to win a summit finish in Oropa on stage 14, before mounting a determined chase to limit his losses on stage 16 after the most famous natural break in cycling history.
After a mid-season break, Dumoulin was then back in form at the World Championships, where he produced more brilliant performances.
He guided Team Sunweb to the team time trial title at the start of the week, before dispatching the world’s best time triallists once more in the individual event, powering around the streets of Bergen to finish his year with a rainbow jersey.
Dumoulin is joined on the Top 100 riders podium by Anna van der Breggen, who enjoyed a dominant year winning the Giro Rosa, all three Ardennes Classics, and a whole host of other riders, and Greg Van Avermaet, who was unstoppable through much of the spring, capping off wins at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, E3 Harelbeke, and Ghent-Wevelgem with the one that really matters: Paris-Roubaix.