Over the past few weeks hundreds and thousands of you have been voting across 11 categories in our second annual VeloVoices Awards.
The votes have now been counted and independently verified and we can confirm
that the winner of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here 2013 is the final results. So, without further ado, tiresome speeches or fake tears, here are the winners of the awards that absolutely everyone in the cycling world really wants to win (honest, guv’nor) – the ones *you* voted for.
Race of the Year
2012 winner: None (new award).
Nominees: Tour of Oman stage 4 (Green Mountain), Strade Bianche, Tirreno-Adriatico stage 6 (Sant’Elpidio a Mare), Milan-San Remo, Paris-Roubaix, Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Tour de France stage 9 (everyone attacks Froome), Vuelta a Espana stage 6 (Tony Martin’s solo escape), Tour of Poland stage 4 (Phinney’s solo win), Vuelta a Espana stage 16 (Barguil beats Uran).
There were so many contenders for this new award that we allowed ten nominations rather than the usual six and then discussed them on the podcast back at the end of October.
Nonetheless two races stood head and shoulders above the others, drawing more than half the total votes cast. 23% of you voted for Fabian Cancellara’s mega-bluff and subsequent track-stand victory at Paris-Roubaix but – as in the World Championships time trial later in the year – he had to concede defeat to Tony Martin. The Panzerwagen didn’t even win stage six at the Vuelta – he fell agonising metres short of a flag-to-line solo victory. But that didn’t stop 29% of you deciding this should be your Race of the Year.
Rider of the Year
2012 winner: Bradley Wiggins.
Nominees: Adam Hansen, Joaquim Rodriguez, Fabian Cancellara, Peter Sagan, Vincenzo Nibali, Chris Froome.
Poor Joaquim Rodriguez. Top-ranked WorldTour rider for the second year in succession. Back-to-back winner of Lombardia. Second at Liege and the Worlds road race. Third at the Tour. Fourth at the Vuelta. All that and he still finished sixth – that’s last, people – in our poll for Rider of the Year.
Instead Peter Sagan eked out an advantage which he sustained through to the finish. He garnered 30% of the total vote, with the other four nominees finishing in a tight bunch headed by Adam Hansen with between 13% and 18%.
Team of the Year
2012 winner: Sky.
Nominees: Movistar, Argos-Shimano, Sky, MTN-Qhubeka, Netherlands women’s World Championships team, Omega Pharma-Quick Step.
OPQS may have won approximately twelvety million races more than any other team in 2013, but that didn’t impress you enough for them to finish higher than third (with 17% of the vote). Movistar were the top-ranked team in the UCI rankings and were also the trade team of new road race world champion Rui Costa, but even that couldn’t earn them more than a runners-up spot (21%).
Instead the surprise but wholly deserving winners [I would say that, they were my nominee – Ed] with 30% of the votes were the Dutch Road Worlds women’s team, They took home both rainbow jerseys: Ellen van Dijk in the time trial and the imperious Marianne Vos in the road race, with the latter coming after a superb team effort in which Anna van der Breggen chased down every rival attack and still finished fourth.
Breakthrough Rider of the Year
2012 winner: Taylor Phinney.
Nominees: Jan Bakelants, Nairo Quintana, Warren Barguil, Zdenek Stybar, Michal Kwiatkowski, Kenny Elissonde.
No surprise here as Tour runner-up and winner of both the polka dot and white jerseys Nairo Quintana was the choice of 43% of voters as he danced to victory with the same twinkle-toed lightness with which he climbed the Alps in July.
Honourable mentions go to OPQS’ Michal Kwiatkowski and Argos-Shimano’s double Vuelta stage winner Warren Barguil, who ended second and third with 19% and 17% respectively.
Flop of the Year
2012 winner: Frank and Andy Schleck.
Nominees: Jonathan Tiernan-Locke, Tom Boonen, Pat McQuaid, Fernando Alonso’s rescue of Euskaltel-Euskadi, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Chris Horner’s saddle.
No surprise that Pat McQuaid was the big winner (loser?) here, with a poll-leading 29%. But it was closer than expected, with Fernando Alonso’s failed rescue of Euskaltel-Euskadi, Chris Horner’s saddle and Jonathan Tiernan-Locke finishing with barely a cigarette paper between them.
Lifetime Achievement Award
2012 winner: Jens Voigt.
Nominees: Jens Voigt, Marianne Vos, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Marco Pinotti, Michele Acquarone, David Zabriskie.
This turned into a humdinger of a battle, producing one of the closest results of all. Marianne Vos finished a creditable third – a position she is not accustomed to – but the vote soon boiled down to a head-to-head between the retiring Marco Pinotti and the still-not-retiring Jens Voigt. The Italian eventually prevailed, but it was mighty close: 34% to 31%.
Sartorial Elegance Award
2012 winner: Thomas Voeckler.
Nominees: Marcel Kittel, Alberto Contador, Pat McQuaid, John Degenkolb, Peter Sagan, Taylor Phinney.
This turned out to be the most popular poll, with over 1,000 votes cast. 31% of you voted for the mighty quiff of Tour de France sprintmeister Marcel Kittel, which would have been enough to win most of the other polls.
But the man of many trousers – all of them garishly coloured – and one of the few who could claim a barnet that rivals Kittel’s was the overwhelming winner: Taylor Phinney, who received a whopping 50% of the votes cast.
Least Likely to Happen in 2014
2012 winner: Pat McQuaid and Hein Verbruggen to apologise for anything.
Nominees: An all-Basque team, Michael Rasmussen joins Belkin, Dan Martin chased up Ilkley Moor by a giant whippet, Tour of Britain without umbrellas, no doping stories, Chris Horner to get another contract.
No surprises here. 39% of you said that the least likely of our six options was for there to be no doping stories in 2014. Shame on you. Where’s your optimism? Sadly, you’re probably right.
Tied for second with 17% of the vote, you banked on Chris Horner not getting a contract for 2014 and Michael Rasmussen joining Belkin in some capacity. Why? Did he say something about them in a book or something?
Funniest Moment of the Year
2012 winner: None (new award).
Nominees: Pozzato’s victory salute at Roma Maxima, giant panda at Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Andrey Amador’s cable car antics, Orica-GreenEDGE’s ‘You Shook Me All Night Long’ video, Wiggins’ magical bike throw, the Orica-GreenWEDGE bus.
Bradley Wiggins achieved a season’s best third-place finish in this poll thanks to his miraculous bike-throwing parking manoeuvre at the Giro del Trentino, but he was soundly beaten by the giant panda who chased Dan Martin and Joaquim Rodriguez up to the finish of Liege-Bastogne-Liege. (If he’d had a teammate to help him, we think he might even have won.)
However, 37% of you plumped for the incident at the opening stage of this year’s Tour de France which brought a football term – ‘parking the bus’ – into the cycling world. Literally. Yes, your funniest moment of 2013 was the Orica-GreenWEDGE. Mind your heads, please.
Kit of the Year
2012 winner: Swiss national team.
Nominees: FDJ, Vini Fantini-Selle Italia, Argos-Shimano, Sky, Cannondale, British national champion’s jersey.
Just 1% separated the top two in our most closely fought poll. The flourescent colours of Vini Fantini-Selle Italia – yes, we’ve stopped calling them Farnese Glow after the, ahem, events of the Giro – and Cannondale finished third and fourth.
The race for first place, however, left us feeling black and blue. FDJ’s striking blue kit picked up 24% of the vote, but they were just edged out by the 25% of you who opted for Sky‘s slinky black Rapha numbers.
Most Aggressive Rider of the Year
2012 winner: None (new award).
Nominees: Rui Costa, Juan Antonio Flecha, Peter Sagan, Amets Txurruka, Fabian Cancellara, Jens Voigt.
Our final category turned into a tight three-horse race between three riders who are never afraid to have a go. However, Peter Sagan was unable to add to his 22 victories on the road on this occasion, as youth had to give way to experience despite drawing 22% of the total vote.
Sagan tied for second spot with Fabian Cancellara, but even the Sacred Haunches™ had to admit defeat on this occasion. At least he had the consolation of losing out to a RadioShack teammate, as Jens Voigt took the laurels with 27% of the vote. You’re such a sentimental lot, you are.
And that’s your lot. Thanks to everyone who voted and commented on the polls. Now bring on 2014!
VeloVoices Awards 2013