What separates the best from the rest?

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Winners at WorldTour level are truly exceptional, but what makes them so? Chris Sidwells investigates what sets apart the best cyclists from the merely excellent ones

SIENA, ITALY – MARCH 06: Mathieu Van Der Poel of Netherlands and Team Alpecin-Fenix, Julian Alaphilippe of France and Team Deceuninck – Quick-Step & Egan Arley Bernal Gomez of Colombia and Team INEOS Grenadiers during the Eroica – 15th Strade Bianche 2021, Men’s Elite a 184km race from Siena to Siena – Piazza del Campo / Breakaway...
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‘We inspire each other constantly’: Deceuninck – Quick-Step flying after 15th season win at Tour of the Basque Country

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ONDARROA, SPAIN – APRIL 09: Podium / Mikkel HonorŽe of Denmark and Team Deceuninck – Quick-Step Celebration, during the 60th Itzulia-Vuelta Ciclista Pais Vasco 2021, Stage 5 a 160,2km stage from Hondarribia to Ondarroa / #itzulia / @ehitzulia / on April 09, 2021 in Ondarroa, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Deceuninck – Quick-Step’s riders “constantly inspire each other”, according to Mikkel Honoré who headed a one-two for the team on stage five of the Tour of the Basque Country...

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Britain’s first Paris-Roubaix Finisher

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At the very first Paris-Roubaix in 1896 one young Welshman came very close to getting on the podium. Vern Pitt explores the story of the rapid rise and demise of Arthur Linton.

[Collection Jules Beau. Photographie sportive] : T. 3. Année 1896 / Jules Beau

They can’t have known exactly what they were letting themselves in for in 1896. As 51 riders set off from Paris at 5.30am in search of the 1,000 Franc first prize among them was two  young Brits...

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