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  1. #1
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    The Rise of Pro Cycling's New King of the All Arounders?

    Go get it Kwiat. This guy looks the most like the next Valverde and/or Gilbert to me. Alaphilippe could easily get there too, but Kwiatkowski is clearly a special one. The compare and contrast between life at Quickstep and Sky was interesting as well.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/...-a-grand-tour/
    Every climb has its end, for verily with difficulty there is relief...

  2. #2
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    How can he be king, when Sagan still wears the crown?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlandry View Post
    How can he be king, when Sagan still wears the crown?
    Simple, because Sagan (who is also one of my favorites) is a completely different kind of rider. Sagan isn't an "all rounder," he's a sprinter/classics guy that can climb a bit. This is evidenced in his focus on the cobbled classics and sprinters jerseys in stage races and the absence of the Ardennes and hilly one day races on his annual calendar. Kwiat, Gilbert, and Valverde are a different kind of rider. Yes, they can perform well on cobbles, but they excel on a hilly parcours like the Ardennes and can compete/win/hold their own in one week stage races and grand tours (this point point is kind of amazing when you think about the TT and climbing skills that are required to be competitive in a big stage race and grant tour. Even Gilbert is not on the same level as Valverde and Kwiat here).

    Simply put, Sagan, as much as I love him, cannot truly climb and TT with the world's best over three weeks. Just take a look at this year's Tour de Suisse on YouTube and you will see him do well in the flat stages/sprints, but get dropped by the climbers every climbing stage. Don't get me wrong, he climbs well for a sprinter and Classics guy (the same way Van Avermaet and Matthews do), but he's not a true all arounder that can compete for GC or the Ardennes consistently. Valverde has proven he can and I agree that Kwiat is on the verge of doing similar things (he's already accomplished quite a bit to be honest).
    Last edited by Rashadabd; 5 Days Ago at 12:39 PM.
    Every climb has its end, for verily with difficulty there is relief...

  4. #4
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    I'm pretty sure that Valverde still holds that crown. Even is Kwait can come close he'll never be in the same category. Actually unlikely weŽll ever see anyone like Alejandro again. His first GT podium and first Worlds podium both at the age of 23 years old. His First Ardennes double at 25 years old (just before his 26th birthday). His most recent Ardennes double at 36 years old. His most recent GT podium at 36 years old. His most recent Worlds at 35 years old. That is a time span unlikely to be equaled soon, or even in the distant future.
    Gilbert is good, but not in Valverde's class. Kwait MIGHT be able to get there. Alaphilippe also might be able to get there. Alaphilippe is actually the one that reminds me of a young Valverde.
    Sagan is not an all rounder. He's very good but he's not as versitile as Valverde. Many of Valverde's fans still believe he can podium if not win Flanders. Sagan cannot win at the Ardennes. Valverde has won partial field sprints. Sagan is not going to win a mountain stage.

  5. #5
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    I am not suggesting Kwiatkowski will be/needs to be a Valverde clone to be great. What I'm saying is Valverde has to be near the end of his career, even if he fully recovers. Kwiat in my mind is the next great all arounder. Alaphilippe will most likely be his strongest challenger from what I can see right now. Each of them have their own strengths and weaknesses, but it's crazy to suggest Kwiat doesn't hold his own comparatively with Ardennes wins, a road world championship, multiple Strade Bianchi wins, a San Remo win (not speculation about him winning, an actual win), TT victories, etc. He's proven himself and I think he's a safe guess for next in line unless another youngster surprises us.

    At 27 years old, he has basically already won every relevant type of race except for a grand tour. That is nothing to sniff at even if you love Valverde.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micha%C5%82_Kwiatkowski
    Every climb has its end, for verily with difficulty there is relief...

  6. #6
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    He's probably the best of the next generation of all rounders, but I doubt we'll ever see anyone like Valverde again in our lifetime. Alaphilippe has said he wants to focus on classics and does not want to go after Grand Tours.

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