Tour de France champion Chris Froome’s stunning year on the bike has been capped with him receiving the prestigious Velo d’Or award for rider of the year.
As well as winning the Tour in July, the Team Sky rider was also victorious in the Tour of Oman, Criterium International, Tour de Romandie and Criterium du Dauphine in a dominant opening half of the year.
And Froome follows team-mate and fellow Brit, Sir Bradley Wiggins, in being awarded the ‘Golden Bike’ award, as voted by a poll of journalists setup by the French Velo magazine.
Speaking from Japan, where he is staying having won the inaugural Saitama Criterium, a post-season exhibition run by Tour de France organisers ASO – Froome told the team website he was delighted to be recognised with the award.
He said: “To win an award as significant as this is a fantastic way to cap an incredible season.
“I was fortunate enough to win the International Flandrien trophy a few weeks ago and to win this one as well is really satisfying.
“I’d like to thank all the people who voted for me, and while it’s nice to be recognised for my achievements, my team-mates deserve credit as well because I couldn’t have achieved what I’ve achieved this year without them.”
Froome pipped the likes of Giro d’Italia winner Vincenzo Nibali to the award after his remarkable year.
Form did drop after the Tour, with a disappointing abandonment during the World Championships and Joaquim Rodriguez pipping him to the UCI world number one spot.
Nevertheless Froome, who also finished second at the Tirenno-Adriatico and was part of Team Sky’s bronze-medal winning world team time trial squad, was rewarded after a season which saw him become the second successive Brit to win the Tour de France.
Also honoured were Nairo Quintana, who won the award for best young rider, while Christophe Riblon – the only French stage winner during the Tour de France after conquering the double ascent of Alpe d’Huez – was named best French rider.