On the blog, on the podcast, on Twitter and anywhere else anyone will listen to us, we’ve been discussing our thoughts on the 2014 season throughout the year. Now it’s time to make your voices heard as we open the voting for the third annual VeloVoices Awards. Over the next couple of weeks we’re asking you to name your selections across a variety of serious and not-so-serious categories.
We’ll publish the final results in the run-up to Christmas, but today we’re kicking off with our nominations for the Race of the Year.
Previous winners – 2013: Vuelta a Espana stage six (Tony Martin’s solo break that fell just short).
Ant: I particularly loved La Course. This was a punchy, full-blooded race, which epitomised the kind of excitement which got me into cycling in the first place. The footage from Marianne Vos’ onboard cam was just electric! It was also an important step in the right direction for women’s cycling,and needs to be followed up.
Jack: Michal Kwiatkowski winning the Worlds men’s road race. The ideal World Championships road race parcours would look something like the one used in Ponferrada for this year’s race. The endless undulations made it nigh-on impossible for even the strong Spanish team to dominate, meaning that for the second year in a row we had a brave puncheur from a relatively small cycling nation give the favourites the slip.
Kathi: Fabian Cancellara winning his third Tour of Flanders – and second in a row – in a full-on sprint. Fabs was in perfect form but couldn’t shake off a group of three. So he risked it all with a proper sprint. And won.
Midge: Tour de France stage five over the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix. I was giddy with anticipation and excitement, mixed with a large dose of trepidation when I saw the weather. All sorts of images flash through my head now. Froome’s untimely exit, Alberto’s face, a ravaged peloton of wide-eyed, mud-strewn riders. Lars Boom took a fantastic win, but my abiding memory is of Nibali, Westra and Fuglsang mastering the pavé with aplomb, and putting two minutes into their main rivals.
Panache: Dan Martin winning Il Lombardia. The Irishman had crashed on the final corner in 2013, conjuring a curse of misery that saw him crash at Liège-Bastogne-Liège, in the opening team time trial at the Giro, at the Vuelta and then again at last at the Worlds. He won in an uncharacteristic way attacking a large field in the closing moments and it was great to see his luck completely reverse.
Sheree: Alberto Contador and Chris Froome went mano a mano on stage 16 of the Vuelta a Espana. On the final climb, Froome attacked and only Contador was able to follow before lighting the afterburners 800 metres from the line to win by 15 seconds. Game, set and Vuelta atop La Farrapona.
Tim: Giro d’Italia stage 16. Otherwise known as the day Nairo Quintana won the Giro. Biblical weather. Three epic climbs. A controversy over race neutralisation. And at the end of it, an incredible individual ride that turned the Giro on its head and put Quintana into the pink jersey for good.
Let us know your choice and the reasons for it – or if we have missed out your personal favourite – in the comments below.
Polls will close at 1200 GMT (UK time) on Friday 12th December.
Next: Rider of the Year