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First Edition Cycling News, Friday, April 9, 2010

Date published:
April 09, 2010, 1:00 BST
  • Dumoulin joins Greipel as world's most winning pro cyclist

    Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis)
    Article published:
    April 08, 2010, 20:22 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Sarthe victory brings Frenchman's total to six so far for 2010

    As he won stage 4 in the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire with a bunch gallop, Samuel Dumoulin scored for the sixth time in the 2010 season. The victory gave him a tally to match André Greipel (HTC - Columbia) as the world's most successful pro cyclists since the beginning of the current season.

    The Frenchman was one of the very first winners of 2010 with a stage 1 victory at the Tropicale Amissa-Bongo in Gabon in January. He remained competitive in February as he claimed stage 3 and the overall classification of the Etoile de Bessèges. Then, he put a one-day race under his belt as well with the GP Insubria in Switzerland. In March, he took stage 6 of the Volta Catalunya. In April, he seems to still be at the top of his form.

    "In a false flat uphill finish, I've won every time this year," Dumoulin said. "I prefer a stage like today's with hills and battles that make the peloton very tired before the bunch sprint finish. This is exactly the kind of scenario that suits me the most. My teammates have participated with the chase of Thomas Voeckler, especially Sébastien Minard. Rémi Cusin led me out and delivered me with 200 metres to go. The staff is also doing a good job this year."

    Dumoulin stands at 1.59m tall. That makes him the smallest pro rider, but a valuable one, too. "I struggle to be recognised though," he observed. "I am hardly seen and I don't make an impression. I've been a pro for nine years, and I've always won races, but this year I'm winning more."

    His previous record for wins in a season was four. In 2010 so far, he's up to six. Dumoulin was a Tour de France stage winner in 2008 in Nantes.

    "Next week I'll take part in three French Cup races: Paris-Camembert, Tour du Finistère and Tro Bro Leon. Then I'll take a break and go to the Tour of Picardie and the Tour of Belgium to prepare for the great races to come later, which are the Dauphiné, the French Championship...

  • Mantova investigation set to reveal accused during Giro d'Italia

    The Lampre team in formation
    Article published:
    April 08, 2010, 20:42 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Judge reveals further information, Nigrelli worried for future of Lampre team

    The Italian judge in charge of the investigation in Mantova that has engulfed the Lampre-Farnese Vini team has said he expects to complete his work before the end of May. That would mean any decision on formally accusing those involved would be made during this year's Giro d'Italia (May 8-30), with any incriminating evidence also likely to emerge at the same time.

    The investigation is still big news in Italy with Gazzetta dello Sport again dedicating two pages to it on Thursday under the headline of "Un 'inchiesta che fa tremare' -an investigation that makes you shake with fear. One page carried an interview with the judge and the other an interview with Guido Nigrelli, the pharmacist at the centre of the investigation.

    Nigrelli again denied any wrongdoing. He confirmed that former World Champion Alessandro Ballan used to do testing with him and confirmed he has been a friend of Lampre team manager Giuseppe Saronni for 30 years. He also said the Lampre-Farnese Vini team doctors ordered regular supplies of medicines from him but insisted he had not done anything illegal.

    "The thing that has bothered me the most is that 60 families risk everything. If Lampre doesn't ride the Giro, it'll close down," he said, raising the spectre that the future of the Italian team could be at risk.

    "It'd be better in the judge says something specific. I also don't like being compared to Fuentes and linked to Austria. I haven't been to Austria since 1987. I was at the worlds in Villach when Stephen Roche won. But as a spectator."

    "They (Lampre doctors) did me a huge favour by ordering their medicines from me, but they were they totally legal medicines. Every so often some one came to do a test. But normal stuff, such as threshold tests. I'd also give them some advice on nutrition and recovery, even homeopathic stuff. I always did them for free and in friendship."

    Nigrelli confirmed he is close friends with Lampre-Farnese Vini...

  • Fränk Schleck apologises for post-crash tweet

    Frank Schleck (Saxo Bank) in the middle of the pack.
    Article published:
    April 08, 2010, 21:38 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Saxo Bank brothers looking forward to Ardennes Classics

    Fränk Schleck apologised after accusing a Française des Jeux rider of crashing into him during the third stage of the Vuelta a Pais Vasco. The Saxo Bank rider went over the barriers inside the final eight kilometres of yesterday's stage, after a rider rode into the back of him.

    Schleck was taken to hospital where he had four stitches at the back of his head. He abandoned the race and will take up to three days off the bike.

    After the crash, Schleck posted to Twitter, accusing the Française des Jeux rider of causing the crash. But after a night's sleep and a chance to calm down, he had this to say:

    "I thought it was a Française des Jeux guy, but it wasn't. It doesn't really matter who it was though. We're one peloton, one big boat, one big family and nobody wants anyone to crash. Of course, we race each other but nobody wants to crash into each other.

    "I have to apologise for what I said on Twitter. Firstly it wasn't FDJ, and secondly it doesn't matter. It was stupid and wrong of me to Tweet that it was somebody's fault. I apologize for that.

    "I flew over the barriers as I was pretty light compared to him. Of course he didn't do it on purpose, and he was very sorry about it."

    Fränk and Andy Schleck are both targeting the Ardennes Classics, which begin next week. Younger brother Andy is the defending champion in Liège - Bastogne - Liège, while Fränk has won Amstel Gold. Both riders have now had less than ideal starts the season. Andy was sidelined for a number of weeks through injury while Fränk's crash yesterday has added to the brothers' early season woes.

    However Fränk believes that both riders will hit top form when it matters, next week.

    "We're both peaking, but I'll stay with the team having massage and eating the right food for now. Then head to the Classics next week. I'm trying to do everything right," he...

  • Voeckler frustrated after unsuccessful attack in Sarthe

    Thomas Voeckler (Bbox Bouygues Telecom) on the attack.
    Article published:
    April 08, 2010, 21:48 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Frenchman is still hoping for stage win for his team

    After the success of Pierrick Fedrigo at the Critérium International, Steve Chainel and Sébastien Turgot at De Panne and Cyril Gautier at the Route Adélie, Bbox Bouygues Telecom was expected to be very competitive at the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire. Thomas Voeckler launched a strong solo attack with 40km remaining in stage four to Pré-en-Pail, but he was caught with three kilometres to go.

    "It's nice to create a spectacle, but only the win counts," said Voeckler. "We didn't get anything at the end. I was hoping for other teams to be on the offensive as well." But defensive tactics were on the agenda of a few teams toward the end of the race. Caisse d'Epargne and RadioShack protected race leader Luis Leon Sanchez and Tiago Machado respectively.

    "When Sanchez accelerates in the hills, we automatically lose a lot of time," said Voeckler. "We came to this race with no sprinter, and we also don't have the best time triallist, so it's pretty tricky to get a win."

    Voeckler and Bbox had it in their minds to change the overall classification dramatically. After all,, Voeckler was the winner of the Circuit de la Sarthe-Pays de la Loire two years ago.

    "We've given all we had to try and win, but it didn't work out," said the Frenchman. "I'm not disappointed. I'm frustrated. Now I don't think there is any other possibility to dethrone Sanchez, but we'll go for the stage win on the last day on Friday so as to not come home empty-handed."

    Bbox Bouygues Telecom is one of the world's most successful teams this year with nine victories so far, but Voeckler himself yet has to score for the first time. He came close, but was outsprinted by Cofidis' Amaël Moinard in Nice on the finish line of the last stage of the "Race to the Sun".

  • Australia’s Carle looking forward to US opportunity

    TV presenter from SBS and event commentator Michael Tomalaris sprays Alexandra Carle with some champagne after the presentations to the women's under 23 time trial.
    Article published:
    April 08, 2010, 22:02 BST
    Greg Johnson

    National Road Series leader will contest Canberra round

    Australian youngster Alexandra Carle is embracing the opportunity to compete in the United States of America this year, after securing a ride with Philadelphia-based Verducci-Breakaway. Carle claimed the lead in Cycling Australia’s National Road Series after her win at the Mersey Valley Tour last month, but will head to the USA a week after the series’ next round in Canberra later this month.

    “I'll be overseas until early October - so that'll keep me out of the majority of the NRS,” Carle told Cyclingnews. “I guess firstly it's going to be about gaining racing experience in big bunches with a massive depth of quality. I'm really excited about improving my bunch skills, which will have a big impact on my ability to get results further down the track.

    “I'm also hoping to just put in a solid, consistent season, hopefully get some guest rides and see where it all takes me,” she added.

    Prior to the Mersey Valley Tour Carle had competed in New Zealand with the Australian National Team and also took part in a training camp on the International Cycling Union (UCI) World Road Championships course in Melbourne, Australia. After finishing 2009 off with a victory at the Oceania Time Trial Championships in New Zealand, Carle was delighted to secure her first major victory for the year in Tasmania last month.

    “Absolutely, for me Mersey Valley was such a great tour, as it really allowed me to see how far I've progressed in the past year,” she said. “There was a lot of quality in the field. To be competitive with many of the girls I really respect, I was really happy.”

    Despite being abroad for much of the season, the layout of the NRS calendar means Carle could be a mathematical possibility for the series title. While that would depend on a strong performance at the Canberra Tour before her departure and the Tour de Perth and Glen Innes to Inverell immediately after her...

  • ASO and AEG extend media partnership

    The final 2009 Tour of California podium is all smiles (l-r): Michael Rogers, 3rd; Levi Leipheimer, 1st; and David Zabriskie, 2nd.
    Article published:
    April 09, 2010, 6:44 BST
    Cycling News

    Amgen Tour of California beamed to bigger global audience

    As momentum for this year's Amgen Tour of California builds, Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) and AEG, owners of the Tour de France and the Amgen Tour of California respectively, yesterday announced an expansion in their media partnership to provide unprecedented coverage.

    Beginning with this year's Amgen Tour of California, May 16-23, ASO will assume responsibility for overseeing all aspects of the race's television production. ASO will bring its award-winning Tour de France television production team to California, including Jean-Maurice Ooghe, who has directed the television broadcast of many Tour editions.

    The event will be shown on Eurosport in Europe and the Versus network in the United States, and in addition to production of the broadcast, ASO will continue to assist AEG with the international distribution of the Amgen Tour of California television and digital media rights, including the development, production and distribution of a portfolio of programming formats, including a daily highlights and recap package.

    In 2009, the race was distributed to more than 200 countries and territories and was seen live in more than 90 countries on some of the main cycling channels worldwide, including the aforementioned Eurosport and Versus, plus J Sports (Japan), SBS (Australia), Dubai Sports Channel (Middle East) and HiTV (Africa).

    "We are pleased to be entering the third year of this partnership with AEG and the Amgen Tour of California and are looking forward to expanding the services that we will be providing to this year’s race," said ASO's deputy managing director, Yann Le Moenner.

    "AEG is delighted to grow our partnership with the Amaury Sport Organisation, which is the world's best organiser of bicycle races," said AEG Sports President, Andrew Messick. "We expect that ASO will provide viewers around the world with both an extraordinary documentation of the race and a showcase of the incredible beauty and diversity...

  • Web developers: Cyclingnews is hiring

    The Cyclingnews' Audi in the French contryside
    Article published:
    April 09, 2010, 7:56 BST
    Cycling News

    Cycling-friendly work with leading cycling websites

    Are you a web developer with a passion for cycling? Cyclingnews is looking for a developer to work across our cycling sites. This is a full-time role, based in the beautiful English West Country town of Bath surrounded by excellent cycling and mountain biking country.

    About the role

    We are looking for a talented Web Developer work at the forefront of Future's online presence, which includes Cyclingnews - the world's largest cycling website - and BikeRadar - the UK's number one cycling site.

    You will be involved in the technical development of Future's cycling websites and will work closely with the website teams to add new functionality to the sites to make them more commercially successful through better content, design and technical innovation.

    You will have commercial website development experience using PHP5. You will have full web-stack capability, with experience of working from relational database (MySQL and/or PostgresSQL) to HTML/CSS. Organisational skills and flexibility are essential in this role alongside the ability to work well in a team.

    What we can offer you

    In addition to a competitive salary, generous holiday entitlement and comprehensive training programmes you will work as part of a passionate team on a number of high-profile websites. Future is a very cycling-friendly company with underground bike parking, changing and shower facilities, and many active cyclists both in the Sports division and the company as a whole. We offer tax-exempt cycle purchase through the Cycle To Work scheme.

    About Us

    Future is an international special-interest media company creating over 180 publications, websites and events, with strong portfolios in the technology, games, music, automotive and sports sectors.

    Future's depth and reach of content makes us the world's number one cycling publisher and the portfolio continues to go from strength to...

  • Teams prepare for the cobbles of Roubaix

    Former Roubaix champion Stuart O'Grady prepares for Sunday's race.
    Article published:
    April 09, 2010, 10:52 BST
    Cycling News

    Roads of northern France ready to host cycling's beloved Classic

    Teams lining up in Sunday's Paris-Roubaix took to the roads of northern France yesterday in preparation for the 108th edition of the 'Queen of the Classics'.

    Cyclingnews braved the cold and damp to capture some of the squads out on their training rides, with the usual plethora of fans that accompany teams during previous seasons missing due to the bitter conditions, with temperatures below 10 degrees Celsius.

    The likes of race favourite Fabian Cancellara and 2007 champion Stuart O'Grady rode the cobbles that have taken them to glory in previous years with their Saxo Bank teammates (pictured), while Team Sky will be looking for its first win in the event during its debut year, albeit with some experienced hands on deck.

    Meanwhile, Garmin-Slipstream is an unknown quantity in Sunday's showdown, boasting Scheldeprijs winner Tyler Farrar, plus Martijn Maaskant and experienced Roubaix rider Johan Vansummeren.

    Although the weather forecast for Roubaix on Sunday doesn't include rainfall, there will be plenty of cloud, with expected temperatures around 12 degrees Celsius with a low of just four.

    Take a look at our gallery of images for an inside peek at teams preparing for Sunday's Paris-Roubaix.