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Pogacar and Van Vleuten top of the world: 2021 rankings round-up

Pogacar Van Vleuten
Annemiek van Vleuten (MMovistar) and Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) (Image credit: Getty Images)

Tadej Pogačar and Annemiek van Vleuten were the number-one ranked riders of the 2021 season, with Deceuninck-QuickStep and SD Worx the most successful teams. 

With all UCI-classified races for 2021 now complete, the rankings for 2021 as a whole are effectively complete. The UCI’s World Ranking, which gradually replaced the old WorldTour ranking, works on a 52-week rolling basis, whereby riders add to their tallies but continuously lose the points they scored 12 months ago. 

After the COVID-19 pandemic forced the rescheduling of the 2020 season into November, the latest published rankings feature results solely from 2021 and can therefore effectively be read as an end-of-season ranking. 

Pogačar tops the men’s World Ranking, way out in front of runner-up Wout van Aert and Primož Roglič. 

With victories at the Tour de France, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, and Il Lombardia among his tally of 13 for the season, the Slovenian amassed a whopping 5363 points. That makes him the most successful rider in the history of the World Ranking, which admittedly is only seven years old, as he beat Peter Sagan’s 2016 tally of 5,359 by a mere four points. 

Alejandro Valverde is the only other rider to ever break the 5000-point barrier, with 5090 in 2015, although the points allocation for various races has since been tweaked, making direct comparisons difficult. 

Either way, Pogačar's Grand Tour title and Monument double see him end the season almost 1,000 points clear of second-placed Van Aert, who won three stages at the Tour de France, Amstel Gold Race, and Gent-Wevelgem among his 13 victories. The third rider who claimed 13 wins in 2021, Roglič, is third on the ranking with 3,924 points, having won the Vuelta a España for the third time straight. 

Julian Alaphilippe, who bagged 600 points with his second successive World Championships road race title in Belgium, is in fourth place, overhauling Giro d’Italia champion Egan Bernal on 2,576 points. Rounding out the top 10 are Sonny Colbrelli, Mathieu van der Poel, Adam Yates, João Almeida, and Richard Carapaz.

Men's World Ranking Top 10
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates5363
2Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma4382
3Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma3924
4Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep3104
5Egan Bernal (Col) Ineos Grenadiers2576
6Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious2553
7Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix2461
8Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers2251
9Joao Almeida (Por) Deceuninck-QuickStep2219
10Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers 2018

On the women’s side, Van Vleuten ends the year at the top of the rankings for the third time in her career after 2017 and 2018. 

In her debut season with Movistar, the Dutchwoman won the Tour of Flanders, the Olympic Games time trial, and Challenge by La Vuelta among 12 high-quality victories. She also bolstered her total with 10 finishes on the lower steps of the podium, taking her to 5,053 points. 

As with Pogacar, Van Vleuten’s lead at the top of the standings is utterly convincing, with second place going to Elisa Longo Borghini on 3,485 points. The Italian champion had one of the best seasons of her career and amassed a wealth of points in the Classics, winning Trofeo Binda and GP Plouay and finishing on the podium at Paris-Roubaix, Liège-Bastogne-LIège, Strade Bianche, and La Flèche Wallonne. 

Marianne Vos, winner of Gent-Wevelgem, Amstel Gold Race, and two stages of the Giro d’Italia, is a close third on 3,378 points, but also had her share of near misses, with second place at Paris-Roubaix, World Championships, and Trofeo Binda.

The fight for the podium is close, with breakout Dutch star Demi Vollering, winner of Liège, trailing by just 35 points in fourth, while last year’s top-ranked rider, Anna van der Breggen, places fifth in the final season of her career that saw her win the Giro d’Italia, La Flèche Wallonne, and Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. The rest of the top-10 is rounded out by Marlen Reusser, Katarzyna Niewiadoma, Lotte Kopecky, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig, and Lisa Brennauer. 

Unlike the men, the fixed WorldTour ranking, which solely covers WorldTour events, is still in place for the women, with Van Vleuten topping that one as well. The main difference is Vollering is up in second, ahead of Longo Borghini and Vos.

Women's World Ranking top 10
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar5053
2Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo3485
3Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma3378
4Demi Vollering (Ned) SD Worx3343
5Anna van der Breggen (Ned) SD Worx2732
6Marlen Reusser (Swi) Ale BTC Ljubljana2364
7Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-Sram2223
8Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Liv Racing2152
9Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope2140
10Lisa Brennauer (Ger) Ceratizit-WNT1969

Teams

MILAN ITALY OCTOBER 06 Julian Alaphilippe of France and Team Deceuninck QuickStep competes during the 102nd MilanoTorino 2021 a 190km race from Magenta to Torino Superga 669m MilanoTorino on October 06 2021 in Milan Italy Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

As well as individual riders, the UCI World Ranking also covers teams, and Deceuninck-QuickStep ended the season on the top step. 

The Belgian team have consistently been the team with the most race wins over the past decade, and their tally of 65 this year helped them to top spot with 15,641 points. Having topped the ranking when it was introduced in 2019, they lost the crown to Jumbo-Visma last year but are now back on top. 

It was a nail-biter, however. Ineos Grenadiers led the way for much of the season and Deceuninck-QuickStep only toppled them in the dying embers of the campaign. 

At the end of September, the British team were in the lead but a strong end to the year, including the Italian Classics where Fausto Masnada was runner-up at Il Lombardia, snatched it for them. In the end, Ineos trailed by 643 points. 

Jumbo-Visma are no longer in top spot but end the year on the podium with 12914 points after the exploits of Roglič and an Aert. It’s interesting to not that, while Ineos and Jumbo had their tallies bolstered by Grand Tour victories, Deceuninck-QuickStep relied much less on overall stage race success, but rather on sheer volume of wins in individual stages and one-day races. 

Pogačar’s UAE Team Emirates and Colbrelli’s Bahrain Victorious round out the top-five, while sixth place goes to Alpecin-Fenix, a remarkable feat given they are a second division ProTeam. As a result, they have once again earned automatic invites to all WorldTour races next year. 

Arkéa-Samsic are the other ProTeam to finish ahead of some WorldTour teams, placing 17th ahead of Lotto Soudal, BikeExchange, Qhubeka-NextHash, and Team DSM, who are the bottom-ranked WorldTour outfit with just 3,887 points. 

Men's team ranking
Pos.TeamResult
1Deceuninck-QuickStep15641
2Ineos Grenadiers14998
3Jumbo-Visma12914
4UAE Team Emirates12355
5Bahrain Victorious10429
6Alpecin-Fenix8251
7Bora-Hansgrohe8222
8AG2R Citroën Team7151
9Groupama-FDJ6715
10Israel Start-Up Nation6704
11Movistar6656
12Trek-Segafredo6593
13Astana-Premier Tech6469
14Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert5571
15Cofidis5481
16EF Education-Nippo5362
17Arkea-Samsic5000
18Lotto Soudal4704
19Team BikeExchange4686
20Qhubeka-NextHash4368
21Team DSM3887
22TotalEnergies3192
23Uno-X Pro Cycling2848
24B&B Hotels p/b KTM2736
25Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB2037

On the women’s side, SD Worx end the year in pole position. The Dutch squad was a steady presence at the top of women’s cycling for many years but were bettered by the relatively new Trek-Segafredo women’s squad last year.

They were the top two teams again this year, but it wasn’t really a close contest, as SD Worx amassed 12,389 points, more than 3000 more than Trek-Segafredo. 

This was largely down to depth. Longo Borghini was the highest ranked of the two squads for Trek, but SD Worx could boast five of the 25 top-ranked riders of the season. 

Van Vleuten almost single-handedly propelled Movistar into third place, although the contribution of Emma Norsgaard – winner of five races including two stages and the overall at Festival Elsy Jacobs – can’t be forgotten. 

There are more than 2,500 points back to the rest of a top-10 that’s more closely packed, with Team DSM pushing Ale BTC Ljubljana into fourth place, while Canyon-Sram, Liv Racing, FDJ, Jumbo-Visma, and BikeExchange round out the top 10.

Women's team ranking
Pos.TeamResult
1SD Worx12389
2Trek-Segafredo9158
3Movistar9067
4Team DSM6414
5Ale BTC Ljubljana6396
6Canyon-Sram6107
7Liv Racing5834
8FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine Futuroscope5730
9Jumbo-Visma5413
10Team BikeExchange3695
11Valcar Travel & Service3525
12Ceratizit WNT3472
13Tibco Silicon Valley Bank1869
14Monex Women's Pro Cycling1799
15Parkhotel Valkenburg1454
16Drops-Le Col1094
17Cogeas Mettler Look1044
18Arkea Pro Cycling974
19WCC Team866
20Bepink746
21Aromitalia Basso Bikes Vaiano688
22Rally Cycling614
23Stade Rochelais Charente-Maritime592
24NXTG Racing552
25Team Coop-Hitec Products551

The other rankings

In terms of nations, Belgium - thanks to Van Aert but also the likes of Remco Evenepoel, Jasper Philipsen, Jaserp Stuyven and Tim Merlier - end the year as the most successful. Slovenia, powered by Pogacar and Roglic but also Matej Mohoric, are second, followed by France, Italy, and Great Britain.

Unsurprisingly, the Netherlands once again topped the women’s nations rankings. With such an enormous share of the world’s best riders, including Van Vleuten, Vos, Van der Breggen, and Vollering, they are way out in front on 16147 points. That’s almost double the tally of second-placed Italy, while Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland round out the top five. 

As well as the headline categories, the UCI’s system comprises several other rankings. As part of the men’s World Ranking, there are separate categories for stage races and one-day races. 

With more points on offer to the winner of the Tour de France than any other race, Pogacar tops the stage race ranking on 3423 points. It wasn’t just the Tour, though. Pogacar won four of the five stage races he entered: UAE Tour, Tirreno-Adriatico, Tour of Slovenia, and Tour de France. At the only one he didn’t win, Itzulia Basque Country, he was on the podium. 

Roglic, who won Itzulia as well as the Vuelta, is second on 2499 points. He only entered four stage races, crashing to 15th while in the lead at Paris-Nice before crashing out of the Tour de France altogether.

Given the weighting towards Grand Tour wins, it’s unsurprising that Giro champion Egan Bernal sits in third place on 2187 points, although he made two three-week appearances and bolstered his total with sixth at the Vuelta. Joao Almeida and Jonas Vingegaard round out the top five. 

Men's Stage race world ranking
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates3423
2Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma2499
3Egan Bernal (Col) Ineos Grenadiers2187
4Joao Almeida (Por) Deceuninck-QuickStep1771
5Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Jumbo-Visma1545
6Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers1481
7Enric Mas (Spa) Movistar1463
8Wout Van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma1341
9Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers1315
10Richie Porte (Aus) Ineos Grenadiers1293

As for the one-day sphere, Van Aert is the clear winner, despite not landing a Monument or Olympic or world title. As well as his wins at Gent-Wevelgem, Amstel Gold, and the Belgian national road race, he was fourth at Strade Bianche, third at Milan-San Remo, sixth at Tour of Flanders, second at Brabantse Pijl, second in the Olympics road race, and seventh at Paris-Roubaix.

Van Aert ended up on 3016 points, 500 clear of world champion Alaphilippe, who also won his third Flèche Wallonne and placed second at Liège-Bastogne-Liège and Strade Bianche. Pogacar’s Monument double took him to third place, just ahead of Strade Bianche winner and Flanders runner-up Van der Poel, while the top-five was rounded out by Roubaix champion Colbrelli. 

Men's One-day race world ranking
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma3016
2Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep2523
3Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates1915
4Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix1836
5Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious1705
6Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo1565
7Matteo Trentin (Ita) UAE Team Emirates1440
8Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma1425
9Giacomo NIzzolo (Ita) Qhubeka-NetxHash1381
10Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix1343

The UCI also runs various Continental Tours, with the individual ranking essentially comprising the best-placed riders from each continent in the World ranking. Pogacar, therefore, tops the Europe Tour, Bernal tops the America Tour, Alexey Lutsenko tops the Asia Tour, Biniam Girmay tops the Africa Tour and Richie Porte tops the Oceania Tour. 

Finally, 21-year-old New Zealander Niamh Fisher-Black (SD Worx) tops the ranking for best young rider in the Women’s WorldTour.

Men's nation ranking
Pos.CountryResult
1Belgium14349
2Slovenia11993
3France11541
4Italy10851
5Great Britain9960
6Netherlands9808
7Spain7979
8Denmark7911
9Australia7001
10Colombia6796
11Germany5230
12Switzerland4290
13Norway4017
14Portugal3893
15Ecuador3067
16USA2956
17Canada2858
18Poland2532
19Russian Federation2350
20Austria2174

Women's nation ranking
Pos.CountryResult
1Netherlands16147
2Italy8411
3Denmark4338
4Germany4212
5Switzerland4072
6USA3637
7Great Britain3579
8Australia3514
9France3259
10Belgium3254

Women's WorldTour Ranking
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar3177
2Demi Vollering (Ned) SD Worx2563
3Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo2509
4Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma3477
5Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine FuturoscopeCecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1692
6Anna van der Breggen (Ned) SD Worx1640
7Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-Sram1463
8Marlen Reusser (Swi) Ale BTC Ljubljana1275
9Chantal van den Borek-Blaak (Ned) SD Worx1091
10Grace Brown (Aus) Team BikeExchange1066

Individual World Rankings in full

Men's World Ranking
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates5363
2Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma4382
3Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma3924
4Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep3104
5Egan Bernal (Col) Ineos Grenadiers2576
6Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain Victorious2553
7Mathieu van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix2461
8Adam Yates (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers2251
9Joao Almeida (Por) Deceuninck-QuickStep2219
10Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers 2018
11Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar1981
12Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain Victorious1897
13Michael Woods (Can) Israel Start-Up Nation1893
14Remco Evenepoel (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep1799
15Japser Philipsen (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix1777
16David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ1773
17Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo1771
18Jonas Vingegaard (Den) Jumbo-Visma1730
19Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix1703
20Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo1620
21Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Qhubeka-NextHash1607
22Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe1579
23Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep1553
24Matteo Trentin (Ita) UAE Team Emirates1535
25Enric Mas (Spa) Movistar1533
26Stefan Kung (Swi) Groupama-FDJ1463
27Mikkel Honore (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep1419
28Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers1335
29Richie Porte (Aus) Ineos Grenadiers1303
30Danny van Poppel (Ned) Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert1291
31Florian Senechal (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep1288
32Mark Cavendish (GBr) Deceuninck-QuickStep1280
33Tom Pidcock (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers1275
34Geraint Thomas (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers1268
35Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Astana-Premier Tech1241
36Simon Yates (GBr) Team BikeExchange1239
37Damiano Caruso (Ita) Bahrain Victorious1238
38Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Ineos Grenadiers1235
39Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana-Premier Tech1230
40Ben O'Connor (Aus) AG2R Citroen1227
41Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis1219
42Jack Haig (Aus) Bahrain Victorious1131
43Benoit Cosnefroy (Fra) AG2R Citroen1131
44Michael Matthews (Aus) Team BikeExchange1087
45Yves Lampaert (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep1080
46Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates1074
47Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Bora-Hansgrohe1070
48Fausto Masnada (Ita) Deceuninck-QuickStep1053
49Guillaume Martin (Fra) Cofidis1038
50Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe1027

Women's World Ranking
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) Movistar5053
2Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Trek-Segafredo3485
3Marianne Vos (Ned) Jumbo-Visma3378
4Demi Vollering (Ned) SD Worx3343
5Anna van der Breggen (Ned) SD Worx2732
6Marlen Reusser (Swi) Ale BTC Ljubljana2364
7Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) Canyon-Sram2223
8Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Liv Racing2152
9Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig (Den) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope2140
10Lisa Brennauer (Ger) Ceratizit-WNT1969
11Emma Jorgensen (Den) Movistar1800
12Elisa Balsamo (Ita) Valcar Travel & Service1744
13Ellen van Dijk (Ned) Trek-Segafredo1641
14Grace Brown (Aus) Team BikeExchange1636
15Amy Pieters (Ned) SD Worx1508
16Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (RSA) SD Worx1455
17Mavi Garcia (Spa) Ale BTC Ljubljana1443
18Marta Cavalli (Ita) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope1433
19Elise Chabbey (Canyon-Sram)1432
20Lorena Wiebes (Ned) Team DSM1428
21Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (Ned) SD Worx1242
22Elizabeth Deignan (GBr) Trek-Segafredo1195
23Juliette Labous (Fra) Team DSM1134
24Kristen Faulkner (USA) Tibco Silicon Valley Bank987
25Marta Bastianelli (Ita) Ale BTC Ljubljana953
26Arlenis Sierra (Cub) Monex Women's Pro Cycling950
27Liane Lippert (Ger) Team DSM895
28Ruth Winder (USA) Trek-Segafredo892
29Lucinda Brand (Ned) Trek-Segafredo827
30Sofia Bertizzolo (Ita) Liv Racing796
31Alison Jackson (Can) Liv Racing792
32Anna Kiesenhofer (Aut)785
33Soraya Paladin (Ita) Liv Racing747
34Lisa Klein (Ger) Canyon-Sram738
35Christine Majerus (Lux) SD Worx734
36Evita Muzic (Fra) FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope727
37Coryn Rivera (USA) Team DSM725
38Pfeiffer Georgi (GBr) Team DSM720
39Chiara Consonni (Ita) Valcar Travel & Servicve720
40Leah Thomas (USA) Movistar708
41Jolien d'Hoore (Bel) SD Worx692
42Floortje Mackaij (Ned) Team DSM688
43Kata Blanka Vas (Hun) SD Worx683
44Anna Henderson (GBr) Jumbo-Visma622
45Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) Ale BTC Ljubljana604
46Alice Barnes (GBr) Canyon-Sram585
47Pauliena Rooijakkers (Ned) Liv Racing585
48Elena Cecchini (Ita) SD Worx584
49Riejanne Markus (Ned) Jumbo-Visma577
50Amanda Spratt (Aus) Team BikeExchange552
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Deputy Editor - Europe. Patrick is an NCTJ-trained journalist who has seven years’ experience covering professional cycling. He has a modern languages degree from Durham University and has been able to put it to some use in what is a multi-lingual sport, with a particular focus on French and Spanish-speaking riders. After joining Cyclingnews as a staff writer on the back of work experience, Patrick became Features Editor in 2018 and oversaw significant growth in the site’s long-form and in-depth output. Since 2021 he has been Deputy Editor - Europe, taking more responsibility for the site’s content as a whole, while still writing and - despite a pandemic-induced hiatus - travelling to races around the world. Away from cycling, Patrick spends most of his time playing or watching other forms of sport - football, tennis, trail running, darts, to name a few, but he draws the line at rugby.