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First Edition Cycling News for September 11, 2005

Date published:
September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
  • An evening of champions

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Shane Stokes

    Many of the World's top cyclists including seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong have...

    Many of the World's top cyclists including seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong have generously donated signed prizes for the upcoming charity fundraising event "an evening of champions" with Eddy and Axel Merckx in Vancouver, BC on October 28, 2005. ´The 'cannibal' himself, George Hincapie, Bobby Julich and Bradley McGee have all agreed to support the fundraiser with gifts.

    "We are delighted with the response from the world of cycling both in donations and support for this once in a lifetime opportunity" explains Philip Meyer, General Manager of the Wedgewood Hotel and a director of the Wedgewood Cycling Team, hosts of the event." We have already far exceeded our expectations and with these extra great gifts will ensure an evening of champions we will be able to make a significant contribution to the BC Cancer Foundation," Meyer continued.

    A limited number of tickets for the reception and dinner are still available at www.teamwedgewood.com and raffle tickets will be on sale on September 14.

  • Ireland team to be named this week

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    O’Loughlin going well By Shane Stokes The Irish team for the World cycling Championships in Madrid...

    O’Loughlin going well

    By Shane Stokes

    The Irish team for the World cycling Championships in Madrid later this month will be announced at a reception to be held in Dublin this Tuesday, September 13. Cycling Ireland yesterday announced that the financial and business advisers Grant Thornton would once again back the country’s World's campaign, helping to field teams in the elite men’s, elite women’s and espoir (under 23) categories.

    "As well as announcing the cyclists who've been picked been picked for the team, we are also using this opportunity to thank Grant Thornton for its continued support," said CI’s general manager Tamara O’Driscoll yesterday. "Without the funding received from Grant Thornton and The Irish Sports Council, we could not afford to give our riders the professional support that is required to perform on a world class stage".

    Although there has been no official confirmation of those on the team, it is understood that Navigators Insurance professional and current Irish road race champion David O’Loughlin will be one of three riders competing in the Elite road race on September 25th. He will also do the time trial.

    The Mayo rider has shown good form of late, winning the Mengoni Grand Prix in New York on August 27th and then placing a solid 15th in the Barclay’s Global Investors GP, formerly known as the San Francisco GP, last Sunday.

    O’Loughlin returned from San Francisco this week and will now go to Portugal for an eight day training camp, accompanied by coach Padraig Marrey. "I am looking forward to the World's this year," he told Cyclingnews this week. "I want to do a good ride in the TT as it didn't go well last year. The road race should be fun with three Irish riders there."

    Meanwhile, women’s road race champion Siobhan Dervan appears to have sealed her participation in the elite women’s road race...

  • Liquigas, Lampre & Balears for Tour of Poland

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    The ProTour teams are gearing up for the Tour of Poland, starting on Monday, September 12, 2005. The...

    The ProTour teams are gearing up for the Tour of Poland, starting on Monday, September 12, 2005. The one-week event of course counts for ProTour points, so current standings leader Danilo Di Luca (Liquigas-Bianchi) is especially keen to consolidate his white jersey. The 29 year-old Italian will race again after a two-week stop.

    "I've been training hard to recover peak condition," Di Luca said. "At the Tour of Poland, I'm going for both stage wins and, above all, an excellent overall placing, if not the final victory! The 50 points for the overall winner would strengthen my ProTour leadership. If I win in Poland, I've almost got the jersey for good."

    In the 'Killer's opinion, "the last unusual time trial stage is decisive for the victory: the first part is flat and then there is a very steep climb in the finale. It's kind of a mountain time trial." Di Luca counts on the 'usual suspects' as his main rivals to watch out for. "Rebellin, Vinokourov and Julich. As usual," he concluded.

    Di Luca will be joined in Poland by the following team-mates: Dario Andriotto, Nicola Loda, Vladimir Miholjevic, Marco Milesi, Andrea Noè, Luciano Pagliarini and Marco Righetto. General Manager Roberto Amadio and Team Manager Mario Scirea will lead the team.

    Lampre Caffita have also announced their respective line-up for the Eastern European stage race: Alessandro Ballan, Daniele Bennati, Gianfranco Bortolami, Evgueni Petrov, Oleksandr Kvachuk, Daniele Righi, Gorazd Stangelj and Giuliano Figueras will take the start in Gdansk, Poland next Monday. Directeur sportif Fabrizio Bontempi is hopeful his team can challenge its rivals.

    "Bennati and Ballan are in great condition and they want to do well to be selected in the national team for the next World Championships," Bontempi said. "We will look for a stage win with them, with Bortolami, or Figueras, who is not at 100 percent yet but who may be able to win a stage."

    Giuliano Figueras is...

  • Belgian World's selection: some opinions

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    After today's Paris-Brussels 1.HC classic won by Robbie McEwen, the Lotto-Davitamon riders expressed...

    After today's Paris-Brussels 1.HC classic won by Robbie McEwen, the Lotto-Davitamon riders expressed their point of view on Belgian national coach José De Cauwer's selection for the World Championships in Madrid, which is to be officially announced on Monday. The Australian winner didn't weigh his words at the finish.

    "If the Belgian National coach watched the race today, he'll know he has to take more of our team to Madrid," McEwen said. "They know better than anyone else how to guide a sprinter to the finish line. And the Belgians do want Tom Boonen to become World Champion, no?" he happily asked.

    His team-mate, Nico Mattan expressed his disappointment on not getting selected. After the finish of Paris-Brussels, Mattan told Belgian television, "We controlled the race. We put everything on a mass sprint, the whole team was tip-top today. Boonen knows that I can pull the sprint; but it's up to De Cauwer to make the selection. I've already given up the hope to get a spot - which I am convinced I deserve though."

    Davitamon-Lotto team manager Marc Sergeant also spoke with media after the race. "Robbie was guided to the finish line in a seat today," he said. "Quick.Step was our alley in this race, as it was in everyone's benefit to work together. All the riders were eager to prove they were good enough to be selected for the World's. I think it's going to be a tough job for José De Cauwer to make the call. A whole bunch have showed today that they are ready."

    But Sergeant also pointed out that some riders deserve a spot more than others. "There's a few names José can't pass: Van Petegem is one of them. Peter has been preparing for a long time for that race. He's been quiet but that's his style; to prepare in peace. But when Peter's presence is asked for, he's there, he was there in Flanders and he was here again today. Peter brought McEwen "in a couch" to the line. At the World's Peter will indeed ride in a Belgian...

  • Anderson responds to ruling on Armstrong case; appeal planned

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Shane Stokes

    Following news that a judge in Austin, Texas, had ruled in favour in Lance Armstrong as part of an...

    - Texan judge rules that email job offer is 'not a contract'

    Following news that a judge in Austin, Texas, had ruled in favour in Lance Armstrong as part of an ongoing legal battle with former employee Michael Anderson (see story), Cyclingnews has been told by Hal Gillespie, counsel for Anderson, that his client plans to appeal.

    Anderson has taken the champion American cyclist to court over alleged wrongful dismissal and breach of contract.

    "Mike Anderson is disappointed with this ruling by the trial court judge in Austin. The ruling dismisses Anderson's claims of breach of contract and fraud, but leaves a claim for defamation and for the value of Anderson's services," he said. The ruling is by the same state court judge in Austin, Texas, who previously "ruled that even if Lance Armstrong did fire Anderson ... such conduct by Armstrong, even if true, would not, in her view, be 'extreme and outrageous'.

    "Today's ruling is not a vindication of Lance Armstrong," said the lawyer. "This is a narrow ruling, based solely upon the argument of Armstrong's lawyers that the email promises he made to Anderson did not meet the technical requirements of a contract in Texas. Armstrong initially suggested that Anderson was making up his claim that Anderson would help him fund a bike shop when his period of employment with Armstrong came to an end. Then, after Armstrong sued Anderson for a court ruling that there was no contract, in discovery proceedings Armstrong produced a copy of the e-mail where Armstrong did tell Mike he would help fund the bike shop," claimed the lawyer.

    "The ruling also fails to vindicate Armstrong on the key issue of why he fired Anderson. Anderson has alleged that Lance Armstrong fired him because he knew too much," he said.

    The latest ruling dismisses this case and any opportunity for Anderson's legal...

  • Ullrich confirms: No Worlds

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Shane Stokes Jan Ullrich has confirmed that although he is in good shape and plans to continue...

    By Shane Stokes

    Jan Ullrich has confirmed that although he is in good shape and plans to continue racing until the beginning of October, he will stick to his earlier decision not to contest the World Championships in Spain later this month.

    The 31 year-old German, who took time trial titles in Verona in 1999 and in Lisbon in 2001, recently showed his solid form with a TT victory and second place overall in the Deutschland Tour, plus a win in the Eurobike Altstadtkriterium Ravensburg criterium. He placed third in the Tour de France earlier in the summer.

    However, despite these good results, he told Cyclingnews in recent days that his remaining career goals are oriented towards winning gold in the road race rather than chasing a third victory in the TT championships.

    "I would prefer not to go and have to do all the preparations for Madrid," Ullrich said. "The thing is, if I prepare for the World's, I prepare for the road race. I have twice been World Champion in the time trial, so now the road race is my focus."

    He feels that the 2005 World's are not conducive to achieving this goal. "The problem is that in Madrid, the course is flat. The profile is too easy for me to become world champion there. I don't want to put all that extra training and extra effort in there when it doesn't make that much sense."

    The German is not about to hang up his racing wheels, however. "I think my last race this year will be on the second of October in Zurich," he stated. Before then, he will lead the T-Mobile team in the 15th edition of the Rund um die Nürnberger Altstadt criterium on Sunday. The 1998 winner will be supported by Sergey Yakovlev, Torsten Hiekmann, Christian Werner, Olaf Pollack and stagiaire Robert Bengsch.

    Somewhat surprisingly, Ullrich said that his motivation at 31 is higher than it was earlier in his career. "I think that even more so than before, I have better motivation than in the...

  • Vuelta stage 14 wrap

    Article published:
    September 11, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Shane Stokes

    Vuelta a España current leader Denis Menchov (Rabobank) was very satisfied after being able to hold...

    Menchov satisfied after crucial stage

    Vuelta a España current leader Denis Menchov (Rabobank) was very satisfied after being able to hold on behind Roberto Heras (Liberty) in the grueling stage 14 to Hors Category climb Lagos de Covadonga. The Russian finished 1.44 minutes down of stage winner Eladio Jimenez, who rode a very impressive race today, and even took fifth place in front of main rival Heras. Menchov has now good perspectives to win the Vuelta, but "we haven't finished yet and it will be complicated to achieve the final victory, even though there are less dangerous days ahead."

    The Rabobank rider was happy to have resisted Heras' constant attacks. "He always changed the rhythm , all the time," Menchov told reporters in the finish. He commented that he felt good during the whole stage and that he is ready to continue battling. Tomorrow will be another decisive day in the Vuelta, as the riders will climb the 'terrible' Hors Category Puerto de Pajares, where Heras is expected to try some more aggressive riding to destabilise the Russian.

    Overall fourth-placed Francisco Mancebo (Illes Balears) couldn't hold the pace of the favourites and lost almost one minute, while Carlos Sastre (CSC) gained a few seconds but is still placed third on GC. Italian Gilberto Simoni (Lampre) also proved his climbing skills once more, finishing a very respectable third today.

    Also see:

    Stage 14 full results & report
    Main
    Stages & results
    Map
    Start List
    History
    Photos