VeloVoices Awards 2015: Lifetime Achievement Award

It’s part of the natural order of things that the torch is passed from one generation to the next. But before our retiring heroes ride off into the sunset, those who have decided to hang up their lycra skinsuits this year are recognised in our shortlist for our Lifetime Achievement Award.

Previous winners: 2012 winner: Jens Voigt. 2013 winner: Marco Pinotti. 2014 – Jens Voigt.

This year’s nominees are:

Ivan Basso: Twice the overall champion and six times a stage winner at the Giro d’Italia. Basso was also runner-up at the 2005 Tour de France and won the Criterium International, Giro del Trentino and Japan Cup. He may also be the most elegant man we have ever seen on a bicycle. He left the Tour early this year after being diagnosed with testicular cancer, which is now thankfully in remission.

Cadel Evans: Many have forgotten that Cadel retired early this year after the January Australian races. ‘Cuddles’ won the Tour de France in 2011 – the first and so far only rider from the southern hemisphere to do so – and was runner-up twice. He was also world champion in 2009 and it was in the rainbow stripes that he won a legendary mud-splattered stage at the Giro the following year. But he also won the Tour de Romandie twice, not to mention Tirreno-Adriatico and Flèche Wallonne. A battler and a true champion.

Ted King: From 2008 to 2015 Ted King has been a faithful and strong domestique, riding four grand tours and ten classics. He doesn’t have a glorious palmares but what he lacked in top ten finishes he more than made up for in kindness, respect and dedication to helping his teammates succeed. Ted was the ultimate team man.

Pablo Lastras: Retiring after an 18-year career with Movistar, Lastras was a faithful and invaluable domestique and great road captain. He departs having won three times at the Vuelta and with stage wins at both the Giro and the Tour. It’s not every day that you have a domestique who has won a stage in every grand tour.

Bradley Wiggins: Wiggins has been a divisive figure among cycling fans but his career record speaks for itself. A multiple world and Olympic champion on the track. The first British rider to win the Tour. Hour record holder. He’s also won the Dauphine twice, Paris-Nice and the Tour of California. And he has worn the rainbow stripes as world time trial champion. He’s one of the most versatile riders of this or any generation and, more than that, he has played an enormous role in getting British people back on their bikes.

Let us know your choice and the reasons for it – or if we have missed out your personal favourite – in the comments below.

You can hear us discussing the shortlists for all our 2015 awards on the latest edition of the podcast.

Polls will close at 2359 GMT (UK time) on Friday 4th December.

Next: Spine-Tingling Moment of the Year

VeloVoices Awards 2015

Rider of the Year

Team of the Year

Breakthrough Rider of the Year

11 thoughts on “VeloVoices Awards 2015: Lifetime Achievement Award

  1. Wiggins divides opinion because we Brits just don’t know how to deal with such a successful sportsman, and we focus in on his less appealing character traits. If not him, Cadel. In fact, either of these two deserve the award for the quality of their dismissive media performances if nothing else!

  2. Gretta says:

    Had to vote for Pablo Lastras. He has been a great domestic and mentor for Movistar for a very long time. He’s going to be missed.

  3. Tanya says:

    Please don’t call Cadel “cuddles”. He hates it and surely at this point in his career he’s earnedthe right NOT to be called that. Cheers.

  4. crikeycadel says:

    Cadel is a stand out. He deserves it because he has been called ‘Cuddles’ by you. He dismissed the media (see Ragtime Cyclist comment) because…”some pommie tosser journalist called me Cuddles….I don’t actually like that nickname”…Sometimes the media deserve dismissal for their lack of respect. Cadel always deserves respect. He is a genuine nice guy with a unique place in cycling history.

  5. Angela Cramp says:

    Cadel deserves to be recognised as the greatest clean rider. Who knows how many victories he would have had if the rest of the top riders had not been drug cheats. And how gracious he has been about that in public.

  6. Phillip Cramp says:

    I think Cadel should get this award because he excelled in the sport at a time when the sport was think with drug cheats so his achievement was outstanding even to be up their with the cheats.

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  8. Five Grand Tour podiums, at least one in each Grand Tour, one of only two non-Europeans to win the Tour de France, and winning the Rainbow Jersey … and, yes, I am referring to Cadel … would merit a lifetime achievement on its own.

    And beyond that, we will never know how epic the fights between Carlos Sastre and Cadel Evans in the first decade of the 21st century would have been, had it not been for a doped up peleton. But look at Evans “8th” place finish in 2005. 1 DQ, 3 DQ, 6 DQ, after the fact. 2. Ivan Basso implicated at a later point in his career. 4. Macebo implicated in Operacion Puerto. 5. Vinokourav caught in 2007. 7. Rasmussen admitted later to doping for most of his career.

    We will never know what performances would have been without doping, but it’s quite plausible that Evan’s 5 Grand Tour podiums would have been eight or more with even cleanER peletons than the ones that he rode alongside.

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