The Road Book 2021 Cycling Almanack
The Road Book (TRB) is back for its fourth year, now covering the 2021 season, and it remains true to its aim of being 'the ultimate chronicle' of the sport.
For the second time it has faced a pandemic-affected calendar, which will have made a difficult job even harder: as in previous years, it will be good to have this book as a record of events when the memories of an exciting season start to fade.
The format leads with detailed results for every race that matters (and probably a few that don't), this making up the bulk of the book. Last year's curtailed calendar resulted in a 25 per cent reduction in the book's size, but this year's page count is almost back to pre-pandemic levels.
A special mention should go to the book's introduction by its editor, Ned Boulting. At 18 pages it is now twice the length that it once was, and we doubt you will find a better 'end of year' summary of the season.
As in previous years, there is a page for 'Riders of the year', based on the views of an impressive panel of judges. Just focusing on the two main awards, Lizzie Deignan wins the female rider of the year, and Julian Alaphillipe the male equivalent (for the second time).
There is no doubting the credibility of the awards, with Christian Prudhomme, Sean Kelly and other worthies on the jury, so TRB could make more of them amongst a wider audience – amongst all the other pre-Christmas priorities.
A great book for fans of pro racing.