Erik Zabel insists it is an “honour” to be surpassed by Peter Sagan after the Slovak won his seventh green jersey at the Tour de France. The Bora-Hansgrohe man again dominated the points competition in 2019, in what was a successful Grande Boucle for the team, with Emanuel Buchmann finishing fourth overall.
Zabel’s previous tally of six green jerseys, won consecutively between 1996 and 2001, was thought to be insurmountable until Sagan came along to dominate the competition. Rather than brood over the fact he no longer holds or shares the benchmark, the German is instead pleased it has gone to someone he feels is so deserving.
“Honestly, there’s nothing I can do about this situation and, in any case, I can’t imagine a better new record holder than Peter Sagan,” Zabel told Cyclingnews. “If you look back at the last decade of pro cycling, I think Peter has been the best all-rounder. So losing a record to him… it’s not so painful to be second behind him; it’s more an honour.”