GENERAL INFORMATION WorldCycling.com Click here to view

INTRODUCTION

Cycling Hall of Fame.com is dedicated to preserving the history of cycling's greatest races and the riders who rode them.

There are literally hundreds of races on the professional calendar each year. The ten Cycling Hall of Fame.com designated races are recognized as the most prestigious on the racing calendar. This provides a platform from which meaningful comparisons between riders of different eras can be made.

Cycling Hall of Fame.com awards points for these races. To make it into the Cycling Hall of Fame.com, a rider must win one of the designated races, place in the top 3 in the World Championships, place in the top 3 at Paris-Roubaix, place in top 3 or win the Mountains Jersey or Points Jersey competitions in one of the three Grand Tours (Tour de France, Giro d'Italia, Vuelta a Espana). In addition, the Olympics Road Race has been included since 1996, the year the competition was open to professional riders.

POINTS SCALE OF RACES

In the designated races, there are 10,000 points available each year with 67% of the points awarded in the Grand Tours and 33% of the points awarded in the major one-day races. Below is a list of the races in the Cycling Hall of Fame.com, the points awarded, and the starting year of the race.

Classification Race Points   (Beginning Year)
 
GRAND TOURS
 
  Tour de France      (1903)
 
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
  Points Jersey
  Mountains Jersey
1,800
600
450
540
220
 
  Giro d'Italia      (1909)
 
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
  Points Jersey
  Mountains Jersey
810
270
210
245
105
 
  Vuelta a Espana      (1935)
 
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
  Points Jersey
  Mountains Jersey
720
240
180
220
90
 
  Annual Total for Grand Tours 6,700    (67% of annual total)
 
MAJOR ONE-DAY RACES
 
  World Championship Road Race      (1927)
 
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
540
180
135
 
  The Five Monuments  
 
   (1896)
 
 
 
   (1907)
   (1913)
   (1892)
   (1905)
 
  Paris-Roubaix
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
  Milan-San Remo
  Tour of Flanders
  Liege-Bastogne-Liege
  Tour of Lombardy
 
540
180
135
420
420
420
330
 
  Annual Total for One-Day Races 3,300    (33% of annual total)
 
  Annual Total for Combined 10,000  
 
  The Olympic Road Race      (1996 - the first year professional cyclists were allowed to participate)
 
  1st Place
  2nd Place
  3rd Place
540
180
135

DESCRIPTION OF RACES

GRAND TOURS
 
The Grand Tours are the longest stages races on the calendar. The races are three weeks long (generally 23 total days with 2 rest days) and are usually between 2000 and 2500 miles in length (3300 to 4100 km), though the new overall length limit is now 3500 km or approximately 2175 miles. Riders who win these races are all-round cyclists who are great climbers and/or time trialists. Their ability to recover quickly enables them to be competitive in these marathon events day in and day out for three weeks.

Doing well in these events usually requires a significant amount of specialized training. This specialized training sometimes prevents the rider from participating in races prior to the Grand Tours. "Survival of the fittest" is usually the case because of the sheer physical demands required in a three-week event. Due to these physical demands, luck plays less of a role in the Grand Tours than in the one-day races.

  TOUR DE FRANCE
The Tour de France is the most prestigious bicycle race in the world. First held in 1903, the race makes a three-week circuitous route through France. The event is truly a French national pastime. Each day of the event sees grand celebrations as the race winds through both urban and rural settings.

The Tour de France is considered the most difficult race on the calendar due to the extreme terrain and the top level of competition. The winner of the race is generally regarded as the top cyclist that year regardless of other race results. The race leader wears a yellow jersey, or "Maillot Jaune" in French, the color of a French newspaper, L'Auto, the race's original sponsor.

The yellow jersey allows the public to more easily identify the race leader. The King of the Mountains jersey, which signifies the best climber, is a white jersey with big red polka dots on it. The Points jersey, which signifies the rider with the most consistent finishes and intermediate sprints, is a green jersey. Winners of the green jersey are usually the best sprinters in the race that year.

GIRO D'ITALIA
Started in 1909, the three-week Giro d'Italia or Tour of Italy is the second most prestigious stage race on the calendar. It was originally dominated by Italian riders. It wasn't until 1950 that a non-Italian won and it wasn't until 1959 that a non-Italian won multiple times. The list of winners now includes riders from a variety of countries including the USA, Ireland and Russia. The race leader wears a pink jersey, or "Maglia Rosa" in Italian, which is the color of the Italian newspaper, Gazetta dello Sport, the sponsor of the race. There is also a King of the Mountains jersey and a Points jersey competition.

VUELTA A ESPANA
Begun in 1935, the Vuelta a Espana is the three-week Tour of Spain and is the third most prestigious stage race on the calendar. The race boasts a list of all-time greats as winners. In addition to the overall competition with its own jersey, there is also a King of the Mountains jersey competition and a Points jersey competition.

MAJOR ONE-DAY RACES
 
One-day races provide a platform to sucess for riders possessing raw power and shrewd tactical skills. Strategy, intrigue and sprinting prowess play major roles in these races. Although luck can play a part in winning, those who have won these races on multiple occasions demonstrate that luck alone is not sufficient to win these races.
 
WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP ROAD RACE
The most prestigious one-day race on the calendar is the World Championships Road Race. The World Championships are held in a different location every year. The race is, on average, 165 miles (265 km) in length. Some courses are brutally steep and are designed to provide for a showcase for climbers while flatter courses become an all-out speed contest for sprinters.

Riders contest the race in national jerseys, not their regular team-sponsored jerseys. This is the only race of the year where this occurs. Because the teams are organized by country solely for this race, strange alliances can arise during the race. One such example might be a trade-team that has riders from three or four different countries. Although these riders may appear to be riding for their fellow countrymen, the chance for one of the trade-team team-mates to win may provide incentive for the others to work for him even though they are not from the same country.

Winning the World Championship Road Race provides a highlight to many careers and those who have won multiple times are considered especially talented. The winner of the race each year wears the "rainbow jersey" for a entire year until the next World Championships. The "rainbow jersey" is a white jersey with five horizontal colored (blue, red, black, yellow, green) bands around the chest and arms signifying the colors of the rainbow. It is the second most prestigious jersey in cycling, behind the yellow jersey of the Tour de France.

  OLYMPIC ROAD RACE
The Olympic Road Race provides a showcase for cyclists in the Olympics. The courses utilize the local terrain in or near the host city and include hills for selection as the race progresses. Heat can be a problem depending on the local climate. The Olympic Road Race has been included in the Cycling Hall of Fame.com designated races since 1996, the year that professional cyclists were allowed to participate.

THE FIVE MONUMENTS
There are perhaps a dozen classics and another dozen semi-classics which are viewed as the most prestigious one-day events in cycling. Often a rider's career is measured by the number of wins in these races. At the pinnacle of these races are the five monuments. These supreme classics represent the pillars of traditional cycling. These races are the oldest and most-prestigious one-day races on the calendar and the winners include the greatest champions of the sport.
 
PARIS-ROUBAIX
The "Queen of the Classics" is held every April, since 1896, in northern France. The course is, on average, 165 miles (265 km) and includes significant sections of cobblestones. Because of the large cobblestone sections in the race and the rough ride over them, it has been dubbed "The Hell of the North". The race is a brutal test of power, endurance, agility and luck. The course is very difficult in the best of weather. With rain, it becomes a quagmire of men and machines trying to navigate unseen obstacles beneath the water and mud.
 
MILAN-SAN REMO
First started in 1907, and known as "La Primavera" after the early-blooming primrose flower, Milan-San Remo is the first of cycling's monuments on the calendar and is held in mid March. As the name implies, the race runs from Milan, Italy to San Remo, a town on the Italian Riviera. The 180 mile (290 km) course includes one major climb, The Turchino, and a few smaller climbs.
 
TOUR OF FLANDERS
First conducted in 1913, the Tour of Flanders is Belgium's greatest classic. The course is, on average, 165 miles (265 km) in length and winds through picturesque villages and wind-mills that dot the countryside. The first half of the race is flat, fast, and windy. The second half includes numerous, gruelling, cobblestoned climbs which provides a harsh selection which ensures that only the strongest survive.
 
LIEGE-BASTOGNE-LIEGE
Started in 1892, the Liege-Bastogne-Liege is cycling's oldest classic. As the name implies, the event is held between two cities in eastern Belgium. The course is, on average, 160 miles (260 km) in length. The race runs through the Ardennes mountains where steep climbs and unpredictable weather make it one of the more grueling classics. The outward leg to Bastogne is hilly, but the return is even hillier, brutally so at the end.
 
TOUR OF LOMBARDY
First held in 1905, the race is the last major classic of the year and is hence dubbed "The Race of the Falling Leaves". The course is, on average, 160 miles (260 km) in length. The race runs through the Lombardy region in northern Italy and includes spectacular scenery through locations such as Lake Como. The course is fairly selective since it includes some significant hills which usually reduce the race field to a small group.

Return | Home

Copyright 2002-2014 Cycling Hall of Fame.com