A Periodic Table of Professional Cycling

Jan 25 2010

With the UCI ProTour now extending from January through October, it’s getting a little hard to keep track of the where and when surrounding various professional events.

Well, struggle no more: Cyclocosm.com proudly presents our Periodic Table of Professional Cycling—and thanks to Operation Monetize, you can buy it (and any of our other graphics) as a poster. It’s inspired some t-shirts as well.



[clickthrough for big sizes]

Races are ordered from top-to-bottom in rough order of importance, with vertical series representing geographic location of events. Stage races tend toward the left side of the table, one-days toward the right, and colors correspond with UCI ranking of individual events.

Races that haven’t been run yet, or couldn’t be shoehorned in elsewhere ended up in the Lanthaniods, while recently-defunct events filled the Actinoids. Each event tile contains the name of the event, the year in which it was first run, a rough measure of its distance in stages or kilometers, and a symbolic abbreviation.

Event abbreviations are mostly three characters because it’s easier to parse (and you won’t need to write equations with them). They’re designed to make intuitive sense, but occasionally reflect an older, alternative, or native-language name of a given event.

Obviously, there were a few concessions made to fit the design (World Championships in the Netherlands, Tour de Suisse above the Tour of Romandie), and I promoted the Tour of California to ProTour status, both for aesthetics and as a matter of opinion. Here are my sources, and if you disagree, here’s the public domain source file so you can make your own.

32 Responses to “A Periodic Table of Professional Cycling”

  1. andmujika January 25, 2010 at 8:00 am #

    Vuelta al País Vasco and Volta Catalunya should be switched.

  2. cosmo January 25, 2010 at 8:57 am #

    That was another toss-up for me, like Tour of Romandie vs. Tour de Suisse. Both top-level events, both with very high quality fields, historically speaking. I think what eventually put Catalunya on top was that it was first run in 1911, vs 1924 for the Basque Country.

    Of course, the chart lists both of the races as 1911…typo #1, I guess.

  3. parco mantani January 25, 2010 at 9:19 am #

    Strictly speaking the Tour of Ireland and the Ras are different races

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tour_of_Ireland

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FBD_Insurance_Ras

  4. Al January 25, 2010 at 9:35 am #

    Thanks for my new wallpaper

  5. Andrew Hayward January 25, 2010 at 9:40 am #

    Great poster. Unfortunately, you spelt Bordeaux wrong in the ‘Boreaux-Paris’ race (1891-1988) bottom left.

    Unless of course there’s another famous French race with a similar name running between the same dates that I’m not aware of.

  6. cosmo January 25, 2010 at 9:52 am #

    Nope. Definitely spelled it wrong. Typo #2…

  7. Andrew Bernstein January 25, 2010 at 10:16 am #

    Umm… where is Tour of the Battenkill? I must have missed it on there.

  8. Lauren G. January 25, 2010 at 10:38 am #

    This may be the nerdiest accomplishment of your life. I am so proud of you!

  9. dave January 25, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    is my glossy new poster going to be fraught with typos? does that make it a extra-collectible first-edition?

  10. Nice January 26, 2010 at 4:39 am #

    Tour of Ireland =/= The Rás.

  11. Eddy January 26, 2010 at 1:33 pm #

    Yes, Battenkill seems to be missing. Too bad. Hope you haven’t printed them yet…

  12. Liam January 27, 2010 at 3:36 pm #

    Battenkill hasn’t proven itself yet, needs another couple years. Wait and see how the pro race is.

  13. Sebastian January 27, 2010 at 5:50 pm #

    Nice work — and congrats on being picked up by Pez again! But other matters demand your urgent attention:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-MWN-XUtEQ

  14. Bill January 27, 2010 at 6:01 pm #

    I think you should have grouped the notable and defunct events by country but, otherwise, Mendeleev would be pleased.

  15. Gary Premo February 9, 2010 at 12:31 am #

    The final year of the San Francisco Grand Prix was 2005, not 2004. The website can still be accessed to this day http://www.sanfrangrandprix.com/index_content.asp

  16. John the Monkey February 16, 2010 at 4:51 am #

    To expand slightly on what “Nice” says, the Tour of Ireland and the FBD Ras are different races;

    The Ras;
    http://www.fbdinsuranceras.com/event/

    The Tour of Ireland
    http://www.tourofireland.ie/index.php

    Other than that, the table is fantastic – topping my previous favourite Cyclocosm infographic (“Calculate your Jens Factor”) with an ease I’d have thought impossible. Great stuff.

  17. Curt Valentine May 27, 2010 at 9:20 am #

    If only I had a nickel for every time I came to cyclocosm.com! Superb read!

  18. elwood_crayfish September 8, 2010 at 1:25 pm #

    Unfortunately the Tour of Missouri is probably defunct.

  19. Anthony July 4, 2011 at 6:14 am #

    More confusing things than learning the first 20 elements of the periodic table for my first chemistry exam was hard to beat; but trying to figure out the level of importance of various UCI Calendar races and Pro Tour events eclipsed that. I had some sort of vague idea.. That being that the major Euro countries Tours obviously drew greater significance. But when it comes to one day races beyond the five classics- I have little idea. This table certainly helps in that regard and is certainly worth pinning on the wall somewhere near the pc when I’m looking up the latest results!

    Does the TDU deserve to have the same level of importance as Suisse and Romandie? Probably not in terms of history but definitely in terms of significance to the cycling community of that country.

    Imaginative concept though.

    Cheers

    A

  20. cyclingsky September 6, 2011 at 7:57 pm #

    I came to cyclocosm.com! for news and articles about cycling !

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