Some rivalries are friendly – two riders who get the best out of each other on the road and are happy to share a beer afterwards. Others are perhaps a bit … sharper. Some were even rivalries within the same team. We’ve got a selection of both in the new category: Rivalry of the year!
Voting ends on 14 December 2019 at 11.59PM, GMT. If you think there’s someone who should be on the list, there’s a write-in option on the poll at the bottom of the post!
The Vuelta’s sole individual time trial brought a battle of the ages. A battle between three Spanish cycling heroes – although two of the three are Colombian – who soar high in the mountains and a Slovenian time trial overlord who seeks to reign supreme in Spain’s singular grand tour.
At the end of this 36.2 kilometer course that ended in Pau, it was the Slovenian Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) who scorched the competition – Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana), Movistar duo Nairo Quintana, and Alejandro Valverde – to win the stage as well as catapult into the overall lead with a healthy margin.
It was a short stage (less than 100km); it was a tough stage (5 categorised climbs … no flat ground from start to finish); it was stormy day (torrential rain, hail, thunder and lightening greeted the riders as they came into the final 10km); yet it was a fairytale ending for the Slovenian rider, Tadej Pogacar, who took his first ever grand tour stage in his first ever grand tour. And as has been the norm for this Giro, the red jersey changed shoulders again, this time from Miguel Angel Lopez to Nairo Quintana in a tussle to the top of Cortals d’Encamp.