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Valverde tops UCI world rankings

Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne) celebrates as Igor Antón (Euskaltel-Euskadi) punches the air in anguish

Alejandro Valverde (Caisse d'Epargne) celebrates as Igor Antón (Euskaltel-Euskadi) punches the air in anguish
(Image credit: AFP)

Alejandro Valverde has moved atop the World Classification of the International Cycling Union (UCI). The controversial Caisse d'Epargne rider used his overall victory in the Tour de Romandie to claim the lead in the world rankings.

Valverde has 392 points, which moved him up from second place. Former leader Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) dropped to second place. There were no other changes in the top ten.

Valverde called the ranking “an honour and a dream for any rider.” He said that he had been winning points since the Tour Down Under in Australia, “and to become the new number one before the major tours begin shows how regular I have been all through the first four months of the season.

“Moreover my team is leading the teams classification and that is also very important. I am surrounded with very good riders and I can rely on the team at any moment in any race.”

Valverde has been banned from riding in Italy for two years, and faces a possible worldwide ban by the UCI. That decision is pending a further ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which is expected momentarily.

The biggest leaps up the rankings were Michael Rogers (HTC-Columbia) from 46th to 17th, and Lampre's Simon Spilak entering the rankings at 23rd.

Thanks to the success of Valverde and Luis Leon Sanchez, Caisse d'Epargne still leads the UCI World Ranking for teams. The Spanish squad has a total of 620 points, 120 more than second placed Katusha, who has 500 points. The Astana team is third with 434 points thank to the success of team leaders Alberto Contador and Alexandre Vinokourov. HTC - Columbia moved up from eighth to fifth place.

Valverde's ranking also helped Spain stay as the number one nation. Belgium, Australia, Italy and the United States rounded out the top five with no changes this week.

The world rankings are usually published Monday afternoons, but the next one will not appear until May 31, after the Giro d'Italia.

UCI World Rankings - Individuals
1Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne392pts
2Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto294
3Joaquin Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Team Katusha268
4Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team246
5Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne222
6Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step216
7Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank200
8Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Astana161
9Christopher Horner (USA) Team Radioshack144
10Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervélo TestTeam120
11André Greipel (Ger) Team HTC - Columbia119
12Maxim Iglinsky (Kaz) Astana117
13Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank112
14Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Liquigas-Doimo110
15Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Acqua & Sapone109
16Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin - Transitions103
17Michael Rogers (Aus) Team HTC - Columbia103
18Alexandre Vinokourov (Kaz) Astana100
19Rein Taaramae (Est) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne100
20Björn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team100
21Xavier Tondo Volpini (Spa) Cervélo TestTeam92
22Roger Hammond (GBr) Cervélo TestTeam90
23Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre-Farnese Vini88
24Michele Scarponi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli86
25Greg Henderson (NZl) Sky Professional Cycling Team85
26Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi85
27Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team HTC - Columbia83
28Alexandr Kolobnev (Rus) Team Katusha82
29George Hincapie (USA) BMC Racing Team80
30Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini78
31Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi78
32Denis Menchov (Rus) Rabobank72
33Benat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi72
34Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Sky Professional Cycling Team71
35Robbie McEwen (Aus) Team Katusha68
36Marco Pinotti (Ita) Team HTC - Columbia66
37Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank63
38Sacha Modolo (Ita) Colnago - CSF Inox62
39Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator60
40Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) Omega Pharma-Lotto60
41Daniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo58
42Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Transitions57
43Nicolas Roche (Irl) AG2R La Mondiale57
44Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana56
45Luke Roberts (Aus) Team Milram54
46Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini52
47Vladimir Karpets (Rus) Team Katusha52
48Jens Voigt (Ger) Team Saxo Bank52
49Janez Brajkovic (Slo) Team Radioshack50
50Andy Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank46
51Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto44
52Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet40
53Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Doimo36
54Michel Kreder (Ned) Garmin - Transitions34
55Sandy Casar (Fra) Française Des Jeux32
56Tiago Machado (Por) Team Radioshack31
57Daniel Oss (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo30
58Eduard Vorganov (Rus) Team Katusha30
59Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Team Katusha30
60Francesco Ginanni (Ita) Androni Giocattoli30
61Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago - CSF Inox30
62Frank Schleck (Lux) Team Saxo Bank24
63Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo21
64Leif Hoste (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto20
65Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini16
66Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre-Farnese Vini14
67Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin - Transitions13
68Matti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo Bank12
69Mark Cavendish (GBr) Team HTC - Columbia12
70Juan José Haedo (Arg) Team Saxo Bank11
71Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team10
72Marcel Wyss (Swi) Cervélo TestTeam10
73Manuele Mori (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini10
74Sébastien Hinault (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale10
75William Bonnet (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom10
76Paul Voss (Ger) Team Milram8
77Luca Paolini (Ita) Acqua & Sapone7
78Manuel Antonio Leal Cardoso (Por) Footon-Servetto7
79Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne7
80Karsten Kroon (Ned) BMC Racing Team6
81Richie Porte (Aus) Team Saxo Bank6
82Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Team Milram6
83Amaël Moinard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne6
84Andreas Klöden (Ger) Team Radioshack6
85Christopher Sutton (Aus) Sky Professional Cycling Team6
86Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank6
87Davide Malacarne (Ita) Quick Step6
88Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha6
89Levi Leipheimer (USA) Team Radioshack6
90Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Professional Cycling Team6
91Thomas Voeckler (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom5
92Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra) Française Des Jeux5
93Mirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini5
94Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank5
95Gert Steegmans (Bel) Team Radioshack5
96Rémy Di Gregorio (Fra) Française Des Jeux4
97Dries Devenyns (Bel) Quick Step4
98Hayden Roulston (NZl) Team HTC - Columbia4
99Markus Fothen (Ger) Team Milram4
100Jerome Coppel (Fra) Saur - Sojasun4
101Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank4
102Pablo Lastras Garcia (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne4
103Robert Förster (Ger) Team Milram4
104Grega Bole (Slo) Lampre-Farnese Vini4
105Aitor Galdos Alonso (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi3
106Jérémy Roy (Fra) Française Des Jeux2
107Christophe Le Mevel (Fra) Française Des Jeux2
108Leonardo Bertagnolli (Ita) Androni Giocattoli2
109Maxime Monfort (Bel) Team HTC - Columbia2
110David Loosli (Swi) Lampre-Farnese Vini2
111Peter Velits (Svk) Team HTC - Columbia2
112Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Arg) Team Saxo Bank2
113Jérémie Galland (Fra) Saur - Sojasun2
114Hubert Dupont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale1
115Fabio Felline (Ita) Footon-Servetto1
116Alexandre Botcharov (Rus) Team Katusha1
117Tony Martin (Ger) Team HTC - Columbia1
118Michael Albasini (Swi) Team HTC - Columbia1
119Dominik Nerz (Ger) Team Milram1
120Mauro Finetto (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo1
121Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) Française Des Jeux1
122Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française Des Jeux1
123Danilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team1
124Rick Flens (Ned) Rabobank1
125Davide Vigano (Ita) Sky Professional Cycling Team1
126Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne1
127Jan Bakelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto1
128Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Caisse d'Epargne1

UCI World Rankings - Teams
1Caisse d'Epargne620pts
2Team Katusha500
3Astana434
4Omega Pharma-Lotto419
5Team HTC - Columbia383
6Team Saxo Bank334
7BMC Racing Team333
8Cervélo TestTeam312
9Rabobank258
10Liquigas-Doimo255
11Lampre-Farnese Vini248
12Euskaltel - Euskadi238
13Team Radioshack237
14Quick Step226
15Garmin - Transitions207
16Sky Professional Cycling Team169
17Androni Giocattoli118
18Acqua & Sapone116
19Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne113
20Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team110
21Colnago - CSF Inox93
22Team Milram76
23AG2R La Mondiale68
24Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator60
25Française Des Jeux45
26Landbouwkrediet40
27BBox Bouygues Telecom15
28Footon-Servetto8
29Saur - Sojasun6

UCI World Rankings - Nations
1Spain1155pts
2Belgium714
3Australia477
4Italy401
5United States287
6Russia242
7Kazakhstan217
8Switzerland214
9Germany199
10Slovenia142
11Norway126
12France119
13Czech Republic110
14Netherlands110
15Canada103
16Great Britain102
17Estonia100
18New Zealand89
19Austria83
20Luxembourg70
21Ireland57
22Slovakia38
23Portugal38
24South Africa13
25Argentina13
26Denmark12
27Belarus1
28Colombia1