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  • Will Hilgenberg

    But can Froome throw as good a whip as Nino can?

    • Neal Rogers

      This very well could be the tiebreaker

  • Nick Clark

    I think Fuglsang nails it. Comparing the two might be great for gossip and discussion, but it’s pretty meaningless for an award, and trying to pick the better rider in this case diminishes both the riders and the award.

    Froome had an exceptional road cycling season, Schurter had an exceptional mountain bike season. Why not compare them to Kilian Jornet? It’s about as relevent…

    • Alister Taylor

      Kilian did get rolled at UTMB this year though.

  • velocite

    Roger Federer.

  • Mark McInnes

    Nino… #mancrush

  • NJDr

    I wonder what Pauline Ferrand-Prévot thinks?

    • Neal Rogers

      Interesting point. I focused on riders who had excelled at both MTB World Cups and three-week Grand Tours, but I would be curious to hear what she has to say.

    • DaveRides

      She prefers Julien Absalon over both of them.

  • MadBlack

    These type of articles are exactly why you are my favourite cycling tips journo, Neal! Great idea for a story!

    I’m a mountain bike racer first who now rides more road. I’m also an admirer of froome and his achievements but Cadel hit the nail on the head with his comment. It’s by far more impressive to be No.1 from march through to September than to simply peak for a period. Granted it is difficult, and froome just got it right noting that his TdF win seemed laboured and his Vuelta was more dominant. But now that it’s been proven possible others will attempt it and in no doubt succeed. What nino did, not just the six world cups but also the Cape Epic AND the world’s, cannot be repeated, not even by nino himself. It’s the #theprefectseasons well above #theperfecttwomonths!

  • RayG

    No offence to Nino and the people he beat this year, but road cycling is The Show. Simply because of the wages gap, road is where the majority of the most physiologically talented riders end up

    • disqus_U85waxYyKN

      Road cycling is the show? it a show but not the show. .Often boring and predictable. It may have more $$ and exposure but mtb downhill and cross country are far more exciting to watch . Nino had the most impressive season. Nino was more impressive Chris had bigger results due to $$ exposure and history . Did you watch Nino?? He was in another league .Road is where the majority of the most physiologically talented riders end up? REALLY What evidence do have . Have more riders so will have more of the 1% of the 1%.

    • Sudarshan Muralidhar Devardeka

      Wages gap. Hmmm. Why don’t they just play football?

  • Ian

    Thanks Neal and CT, this a great, left field article. And Cadel’s view on the question is brilliant.

  • David

    Put Nino in a UCI multi stage road race and he’ll perform very well (as already proven), put Froome in a UCI world cup XCO race and let’s see what happens with his lack of bike handling skills, no race radio, no power meter to watch and no team members pulling him along. Nino is by far and away both the better bike rider and the better bike racer. And the only thing Rasmussen would know is who dopes better; honestly, why include the opinion of a convicted and admitted doper. What’s next, ask Lance?

    • Neal Rogers

      Really, my intent of the piece was not “who is the best all-around better bike rider/racer,” but rather “whose historic feat in 2017 was more impressive?” as they are both obviously at the top of their respective disciplines.

    • Andy B

      Saying Froome dog has poor handling skills is rubbish

      • Jamie Levett

        Relative to Nino his skills are indeed, complete rubbish.

        • Andy B

          Tell that to richie

    • We need to move on from this @disqus_jAQAweEPCj:disqus . The entire history of this sport is in a dark shadow, and its often the difference between who got caught and who didn’t.

      • David

        Yes, the entire history of the sport is in a dark shadow. And, people are still getting caught doping. So the history continues.

        • So what’s the solution for us to get comment on a topic? Disregard everyone’s opinion and speak to nobody?

          • David

            It’s okay, there are other cycling media outlets to read that understand the doping issue and realize the harm it continues to do the sport. You couldn’t garner the opinion of another pro – or ex-pro – rather than Rasmussen? Doping continues to give cycling a bad name, and as a publication whose content is cycling I would have thought you would pay more attention to the issue rather than, and I quote you here, “its often the difference between who got caught and who didn’t “.

            • Neal Rogers

              Do Evans, Fuglsang, Hesjedal (and attempts to speak with Peraud) not count as “another pro or ex-pro”? Rasmussen is one of five riders identified in that category, and regardless of his doping history, he has insight into what it is involved to win at that level. Fact is, it’s a very select group of athletes who have excelled at both MTB World Cups and three-week Grand Tours.

              • David

                As I said, ‘another ex-pro”. I didn’t say other pros, ex or otherwise.

                • Neal Rogers

                  You wrote: “You couldn’t garner the opinion of another pro – or ex-pro – rather than Rasmussen?” We did. We had three others, and aimed for a fourth.

                  • David

                    Yes; ” another pro – or ex-pro rather than Rasmussen” Note the rather than, even as you quote directly from my post.

    • Michele

      Didn’t Ryder dope?

      You seem to have no issue with CT asking him?

      Where do you draw the line in which dopers can be, and can’t be, used?

      • David

        At last, someone else noting the dopers referred to in this article.

        • Michele

          And I have no issue with either Ryder or ???? man being asked for this opinion.

          I thought Rasmussen opinion (forgetting who he is) actually contributed to the piece.

    • Sudarshan Muralidhar Devardeka

      Agree with your comments on Nino vs Froome.

      However, contrary to your thinking, I followed Lance’s Stages podcast throughout the TDF. It was very incite-full. I also eagerly wait for Rasmussen’s tweet. Guess what, it was Rasmussen’s tweet that brought me to this article.

      These guys raced at the top level, and know a thing or two about it.

  • Our Insta-story poll is favouring Froome at the moment. Then again, how many of our audience even knows who Nino is?https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/89f7a311d283ee3f1d5924a375327fafc81e856e1e6777dc48c06d74f8d98153.png

  • Greg Khan

    Road racing is the pinnacle of bicycle racing …as dominant as Nino may be on an MTB, he must move to the road to even be considered among the greats of cycling. That being said ..Much respect to him for his accomplishments thus far.

    • disqus_U85waxYyKN

      That wasnt the question . No he does not . Only if he wants to be a great of road cycling or overall racing cyclist like Cadel or Tomac.
      Your answer so biased, in my unbiased opinion Ha ha ( please notice joke in absence of comic sans font)

  • Andy B

    Nino had a more dominant year winning over a longer period of time
    Even though a Grand tour is obviously extremely tough you dont have to “win” every day,just be the most consistent
    Nino won everything

    Two grand tours is hugely impressive but froome wasnt as dominant at the tour as he has been and looked to improve at the vuelta, as noted he also had the strongest team around him to assist
    Nino was the best all year on his own in a strong field

    Very hard to pick one over the other but I’d lean toward Nino
    Cadel sums it up well

    • marc

      yep agree, actually on everything you said Andy B. To be consistent enough to place not just high enough, but actually win each day, for me Nino gets the nod.

      • disqus_U85waxYyKN

        I agree with you both

  • Just a personal niggle here …
    I know CT is international, but it’s also still Australian, right? The days are not getting shorter!
    That just feels like an unthinking brush-off.

    • We’re well and truly international Chris. During the Australian day we focus on the Aussie audience. During the US day we focus on the American audience, etc. But our common interest and bond is a love for cycling, which should transcend anyone’s location. We actually have more employees in the US now than Australia. But we obviously still care deeply about Australia and produce more local content than ever here.

      • Sagan’s slipper

        I’m afraid it doesn’t read that way Wade. The Australian bias of this site is palpable, the recurring articles looking to discredit / through mud at Sky is one example. As a temporary resident the parochial nature of the Aussie media never fails to make me chuckle. This outlet is no different.

        • We have bias. We’re human, and we’re all fans of cycling. We admit it and stand by it, but we do our best to tell all sides of the story. I don’t believe that I deny that anywhere.

          • disqus_U85waxYyKN

            Every one has bias. Imagine a world without it. Or a cycling world without it. I think ad revenue would decrease on your great site as marketers would not try to ingrain bias on us . Keep the bias, the ads and the site!!!
            “The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.”
            ? Robertson Davies,
            “Too often, opinion is a lens polished by the grit of bias. And as I stare through my own lens, I might ask how much polish can the grit of bias actually create?”
            ? Craig D. Lounsbrough
            “I’m a professional journalist. Making up lies to fit the facts – it’s what we do.”
            ? Andrew Klavan

  • TH

    I thought this article was a joke when first reading the headline. Who is Schurter? Never heard of him! Then I find out he is for real. I used to watch pro mountain biking and I mountain bike and gravel ride way more than road riding in my personal life. I stopped watching mountain bike racing probably the last time it was in the Olympics. As exciting as mountain bike racing should be it never seemed to translate to television. Now, I am wondering if maybe current broadcast coverage has brought out the excitement of mountain bike racing. Time to try again!

    • disqus_U85waxYyKN

      The mountain bike season was fantastic. The olympics was boring IMO. ruined by boring course( for near full tv camera coverage) and specialized tire failures among others
      REDBULL.TV is wear to get DH and XCO live and free. Except world champs which nordvpn was handy . I watched every TDF stage live this year. Yes there were exciting times ,But more of a chess game than a cage fight of mtb racing . both DH and XCO suffer from some boring courses due to uci /redbull /$$$ but it doesn’t necessarily make the races boring like the road can be. Ban radios power meters and heart rate monitors IM uneducated uninformed Opinion

      • Neal Rogers

        I think this is a pretty good uneducated, uninformed opinion.

  • Andrew

    Now let me see, does a mountain biker have a squillion dollar team to pace him and drag him back to the chase along the trails, swap bikes , mechanics , team radio and a POWER METER.

    • Eric Blair

      I’m pretty sure that Schurter has all of those except the teammates, with the caveat that he lacks teammates to pace him to the front simply because he is the front.

      • disqus_U85waxYyKN

        Dont think radio allowed in XCO He has any rider to pace him as he is fastest at the start middle and end. Had no mechanicles this year . a power meter would need to be light as weight matters alot . He used a garmin head unit in 2016 but not in 2017 that I know of. Team budget not 35 million euro like sky . Hes prob not on 4 million euro either but I hope he gets a million. DH highest paid is Aaron Gwin on $1 mil usd total.

        • Eric Blair

          You’re probably right about the radios. I just wanted to argue that Schurter benefits from a lot of the same talent and tech as Froome. I dislike the idea that just because Froome’s famously wedded to his power meter means that his victories aren’t as impressive. Holding 400 watts for any length of time is absolutely bonkers even if you have a screen telling you that you’re holding 400 watts.

          • Andy B

            I think sometimes people forget you still have to do the work, its not a lounge chair ride

      • Jorge Silva

        You are not allowed to swap bikes in MTB. If you do you get an instant DQ from the race.

  • Steven Balderstone

    Re: “Interesting detail: Froome started his career in mountain-bike racing, in Kenya” …you might want to check his Biography on that one.

  • singlespeedscott

    For a male road cyclist to show the dominance of Schurter they would of had to win the Triple Crown. Froome’s wins this season where good but certainly no where at the level displayed by Merckx in 1974 or Roche in 1987.

    IMO Nino’s wins where the off road equivalent of pulling a Triple Crown, he was clearly the better male cyclist this year.

  • Hoepla

    Nino Schurter? Sorry, never heard of him

  • nick ramey

    I’d like to see Froome just finish one of these weird Nino workouts- then we can talk

  • Jamie Levett

    Nino wins on courses with sustained climbing, he wins on flatter courses, he wins in the wet and the dry, he literally never crashes and he completely dominates. For Froome to even be comparable he would have to at least win Ardenne classic and a grand Tour. Most of the road guys and ex MTB riders in the above comments have been out of the MTB scene way to long to have a balanced opinion. Ask Prevot, Cink, and VDP.

    • DaveRides

      The point of selecting the riders they did was that they had achieved some level of success in both grand tours and in MTB.

      Cink has only started a single GT (result: DNF, no stage wins) while the other two haven’t even started one.

      Sorry, but the old MTB success of Evans etc is still more relevant than the opinions of riders without any GT experience.

      I agree that Froome has some question marks around the lack of variety in his racing skills. At the very least, he should ride the Giro to become the complete master of the grand tour sub-discipline.

      • Jamie Levett

        If he didn’t end up in hospital Froome would get lapped by Nino in any WC XCO race. Nino has finished the Tour of Switzerland with some decent results. I see no reason why he couldn’t finish a grand Tour.

    • erkcyclisme

      We already know how well Froome can run without a bike.

  • ????????? ???????

    they are both great riders.

  • David9482

    Froome for sure.

    Nino had a great season, no question. But, it’s a bit of a big fish, little pond issue. The top cycling talent goes to road racing, and to win 2 Grand Tours in a season in this century is the biggest feat possible.

  • Laura

    Nino for sure, not directly related but interesting to note Rachel Atherton had the perfect season last year in DH.


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