1. Best Classics Rider of the Season: Watch out Sagan, there's a new kid in town, and with this boy towards the front of damn near everything this spring, he's already blitzed these races more'n you: baby phenom Michal Kwiatkowski. You better quit poppin' wheelies and start poppin', well, many dedicated training hours, kid!
2. Being Clean Is the Best Revenge Award: Okay, Alejandro Valverde's got punch, he can climb, he's one smart tactical s.o.b., hell, he can even sprint if he has to. But c'mon, man--7 years *after* the bloodbagathon of Operacion Puerto and the guy's *now* on the form of his life? F!@#$in' good espresso, is all I can say. And I hope, against all odds, that's all ever I have to!
3. No Guts No Glory Prize: his breakaway mates fell off like wilting leaves, but at Liege, only Giampaolo Caruso clung on, to the very last second no less. Not a win, but clearly a victory--bravo Giampaolo!
4. Shut Up! Could've Too So Either! Prize: oh Thor Hushovd. Now that BMC's actually got Philippe Gilbert outta his funk and back to some results, maybe they could do the same for you too? Ok, they're not gonna give a crap about you 'til at least after the Giro, but there's still time left in the season then!
5. Crash o' the Season: no, it didn't break the most bones or derail the whole campaign or even, well, happen 'til the last moments of the last spring Classic of the year. But was I the only one who leapt outta my chair screaming at the video stream when it happened? Yep, Dan Martin's agonizingly pointless slide-out just a few hundred meters from victory at Liege. Suck, suck, suck!
6. Holy Crap It's Not Just Hyperbole Award: y'know, I think Vincenzo Nibali is actually right calling bull!@#$ on the teams' safe'n'sound race tactics. Except for the last kilometer of every race, has there ever been a more cautious, measured, even dull Classics season than this one?
7. Domestique o' the Classics: yes, Tom Boonen nut-whackingly earned it for a time propelling--however inadvertently--Niki Terpstra to his Paris-Roubaix win. But we love Samuel Sanchez, with your leg-rippin' work for Gilbert, this puppy's for you. So c'mon, BMC, you gonna let Samu ride for himself--and get someone else serious to ride for him--at the Vuelta at least?
8. I (Don't) Got You, Babe Prize: jeez, it's been depressing watch Andy Schleck fall down the pit o' sub-mediocrity and despair--I don't think the poor sod's even finished a race all season, much less ones he used to dominate or at least enliven. Remember when Frank used to ride for Andy? Yeah, hindsight is 20/20--what a freakin' disaster for poor Frank!
9. Magic Marker Award: Fabian Cancellara, you nailed it in Tour of Flanders, but whoa moly, you couldn't catch a break 'notherwise this whole season. You're just too damn marked by everyone--but don't worry, they'll be preoccupied with Tommeke again next year!
10. Save a Prayer for (the Giro) Now Prize: aw, I guess even Purito Rodriguez needs to be able to breathe to win a race. But he's tranquillo for the Giro d'Italia--and with 10 days to go and an estimated 4-5 days needed to heal, Cadel Evans, don't get too comfy!
And Finally, Yer Bonus 2014 Classics Mystery: if Sky is scarfin' all this Tramadol, and if it really does enhance performance, why has Sky sucked all year?
All right, it's been bitchin'--now on to the fabulous Giro d'Italia! C'mon, it's the official song (again)--sing!