Here are the riders we think had the year to put them on the peloton map. We have a future Grand Tour rider, a super sprinter, a few all-rounders – lots of new talent to watch in the next few seasons! But if you think of someone else who has finally broken through this year, you can write them in on the voting form!
Previous winners: 2012 – Taylor Phinney; 2013 – Nairo Quintana; 2014 – Michal Kwiatkowski; 2015 – Esteban Chaves; 2016 – Adam Yates
Egan BernalEmbed from Getty Images
Sheree: Egan Bernal, just 20 years old at the start of this season, is seen by many as the natural successor to his compatriot Nairo Quintana, after his win in the prestigious under-23 race, Tour de l’Avenir. This season, he also won the Sibiu Cycling Tour, Le Tour de Savoie Mont Blanc and the Tour of Bihos-Bellotto. He was runner-up in Giro dell’Appennino, third in the Memorial Marco Pantani. Suffice to say, the youngster has a bright future – no wonder he’s been snapped up by Sky for the next three seasons.
Yves LampaertEmbed from Getty Images
Kathi: For me, the Quick-Step team has been the team of the Grand Tours, with a variety of riders winning on a variety of stages in all three. My breakthrough rider did just that in the Vuelta – Yves Lampaert took his first Grand Tour win in stage 2, which landed him the red jersey for a stage – one of only two riders who wore the jersey before Chris Froome took it over. But it wasn’t just that – it was his performance for his team throughout the Vuelta, helping them rack up a total of six stage wins.
Velocast: Breakthrough rider in the women’s peloton this season had to be Coryn Rivera, Sunweb’s young American rider who won Trofeo Alfredo Binda, RideLondon Classique, stage 3 in the Tour of California and a storming Tour of Flanders. She also had a second in Tour de Yorkshire and third in Gent-Wevelgem. With her teammates at Sunweb, she topped the season off by winning the team time trial championship in Bergen.
Mads PedersenEmbed from Getty Images
Midge: Whether in support of his team or seizing his opportunities when they arose, Trek-Segafredo’s Mads Pedersen took on his first WorldTour season like a tiger. At the Giro, his first GrandTour he made the breaks and supported his captains and finished with enough zip to place 12th in the final time trial. With the national champions road race jersey on his back, he went on to win his first stage race at the Tour de Poitou Charentes and his second a month later with a storming performance on home soil at the Tour of Denmark. He’s the Danish engine that CAN!!
Fernando GaviriaEmbed from Getty Images
Panache: Fernando Gaviria took at least one victory in every stage race he rode this season: San Juan, Algarve, Tirreno, Giro, Britain and Guangxi. The Giro d’Italia was his stand-out performance, winning a whopping four sprint stages! His 2017 season palmares would be a dream for most professional riders and he’s only 23 years old!!
Matej MohoricEmbed from Getty Images
Sheree: The 23-year-old Slovenian first came to prominence with back-to-back UCI World Road Race victories with the junior title in Valkenberg (2012) and under-23 in Florence (2013). After going through three teams in three years, he’s finally come good in this year’s Vuelta a Espana when he won stage 7 to Cuenca , followed by victory in the Hong Kong Challenge. He’s now moving to ride for Bahrain-Merida where his performances in 2017 should stand him in good stead.
Header image: ©GETTY/Corbis/Tim de Waele