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First Edition Cycling News, Friday, December 30, 2011

Date published:
December 30, 2011, 0:00 GMT
  • Carlström facing retirement after 10 years

    Kjell Carlstrom (Team Sky)
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 17:25 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Finn's contract was not renewed by Team Sky

    Kjell Carlström, one of only two Finns in the pro peloton, has announced his probable retirement. His contract with Team Sky was not renewed and he has so far not found a new team for 2012.

    “I was poorly prepared for this. Even in the summer I was fairly confident that something could be found,” he told yle.fi. “I still expected that I would get a professional contract somewhere in the world. It is, however, a rather small probability.”

    It is a big disappointment, the 35-year-old admitted, “but I have a 10-year career behind me. You have to stop some time.”

    Carlström may still ride in national-level races. “That is not an impossibility. I have not yet thought about it. It depends quite a lot on what I do for a living and how much time the training takes.”

    He rode most of his career with Italian teams – Amore e Vita from 2002 to 2004, and Liquigas-Bianchi from 2005 to 2009. He was with Team Sky in 2010 and 2011.

    The Finn won his national road title three times in his career, including this year.  His other wins include one stage at Paris-Nice in 2008. During his career he rode each of the Grand Tours three times.

  • Farrar, Devolder to lead teams in Algarve

    Tyler Farrar dedictated his first Tour de France stage win to his late friend Wouter Weylandt
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 18:53 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    16 teams lined up for Portuguese race

    Tyler Farrar will lead Garmin-Cervelo in the Volta ao Algarve in February, while 2008 winner Stijn Devolder will be there for Vacansoleil. The UCI 2.1-ranked Portuguese race takes place February 15-19.

    According to biciciclismo.com, Devolder will be supported by, amongst others, Gustav Larsson and Lieuwe Westra. Farrar will be accompanied by Heinrich Haussler, and Koldo Fernandez, both of whom have won stages in the race, as well as Murilo Fischer.

    Other top riders already announced for the race include 2009 and 2010 winner Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank), Andreas Klöden (RadioShack-Nissan) and Bradley Wiggins and Edvald Boasson Hagen of Team Sky.

    So far, 16 teams have been announced as participating. They include 10 WorldTour teams: AG2R, BMC, Garmin-Cervelo, Lotto-Belisol, Omega Pharma-Quick Step, Rabobank, RadioShack-Nissan, Saxo Bank, Sky and Vacansoleil. Topsport Vlaanderen and UnitedHealthcare will represent the Professional Continental ranked teams, with four Portuguese Continental teams filling out the field.

  • Duran returns to amateur ranks

    Geox - TMC 2011 - Arkaitz Duran (Geox - TMC)
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 20:51 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Geox rider unable to find a pro team for 2012

    Arkaitz Duran of Geox-TMC will return to the amateur rankings in the coming season following the demise of his Professional Continental squad.  The 25-year-old will ride for Telco'm-Conor Azysa, according to biciciclismo.com.

    Duran was one of many searching for a new team after Geox announced in October that it would stop its sponsorship. Vuelta a Espana winner Juan Jose Cobo still does not have a team for the coming season, nor does David de la Fuente.

    Duran turned pro in 2006, serving all of his time with Mauro Gianetti's teams. He did not have any wins in his pro career, but rode the Tour de France once and the Vuelta a Espana twice.

  • Wonderful Pistachios expands schedule for 2012

    The Wonderful Pistachios team
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 21:50 GMT
    By:
    Laura Weislo

    Carlsen, Higuma join American team

    The US-registered UCI Continental squad Wonderful Pistachios will enjoy an increased budget and expanded race calendar for the 2012 season, team manager Josh Horowitz told Cyclingnews.

    It will be the third season the team has worked with the Paramount Farms brand, which was launched mid-2008 and quickly entered the cycling world first as a minor sponsor of the Adageo Energy team, then as title sponsor of the squad in 2011.

    Horowitz said that increased sponsorship, including backing from Paramount Farms' other brands will allow the team to double its number of racing days in 2012.

    "We will focus on USA Cycling's National Criterium Calendar and other one-day races in the USA, since the main goal of our sponsor is to introduce the public to its product. There are larger audiences at the bigger criteriums and one-day races like [the] Philadelphia [International Classic] and [Tour of the] Battenkill, which allows us to give out more samples," Horowitz said.

    The team will look to experienced crit specialists Yosvany Falcon, who joins the team from Realcyclist.com, Sterling Magnell and Iggy Silva in these races.

    In addition, the team has signed Kirk Carlsen, formerly of Garmin-Transitions and the Chipotle development team, and Japanese rider Yusuke Higuma since USA Cycling announced its UCI-registration list.

    After a racing calendar restricted by its small budget in 2011, the team will compete in an expanded schedule, with approximately 100 days of racing across the USA. They will also take in a few UCI Americas Tour events in Central and South America, likely starting with the Vuelta Mexico in March.

    In the...

  • Twenty teams so far for Haut Var-matin

    The diminuitive Samuel Dumoulin takes the Haut Var opener.
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 22:48 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Climbers' race attracts eight WorldTour teams

    Twenty teams have been announced for the Tour du Haut Var-matin, with up to five more possible. Eight WorldTour teams lead the way in the two-day race, February 18-19.

    FDJ-Big Mat, AG2R-La Mondiale, Saxo Bank, GreenEdge, Movistar, Vacansoleil, Astana and BMC will represent the WorldTour. Professional Continental teams in attendance will be Europcar, Cofidis, Saur Sojasun, Bretagne-Schuller, Accent Jobs-Willems Veranda's, Project 1t4i, and Type 1 - Sanofi.

    Continental-ranked teams Endura Racing, BigMat Auber 93, La Pomme Marseille, Roubaix Lille Metropole and Veranda Rideau round out the field

    As it has since 2009, the race will have two stages. The first runs 189.2 km from Draguignan to La Croix-Valmer, and includes three category two climbs. However, the race will be decided on the second day, 205.4km from Frejus to Fayence. That stage features one category two climb, two category one and one HC climb, as well as the finale at the Mur de Fayence, with grades of up to 26%.

  • Goss focussed on bigger picture ahead of Bay Classic defence

    2011 Milan-San Remo champion Matt Goss (HTC - Highroad)
    Article published:
    December 29, 2011, 23:30 GMT
    By:
    Jane Aubrey

    Predicts "wide open" criterium series in Geelong

    Defending Jayco Bay Cycling Classic champion Matt Goss (GreenEdge) is playing down his chances of a repeat victory in the four-race series, which begins this Sunday January 1 at Geelong's Eastern Beach.

    Last January, Goss sealed the title by claiming his second race win on the final race which resulted in a two-point victory over compatriot Michael Matthews (Urban). It was the start of a hot run of form which saw the Tasmanian finish second at the national road titles to Jack Bobridge (Garmin-Cervelo), before winning the Santos Tour Down Under prelude, the Cancer Council Classic. A stage win later that week and second overall in the Australian WorldTour race preceded another stage win, this time at the Tour of Oman. At Paris-Nice in early March, Goss outsprinted Heinrich Haussler (Garmin-Cervelo) and Denis Galimzyanov (Katusha) to claim stage 3. Later that month, Goss bettered Fabian Cancellara (Leopard-Trek) and Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) to become the first Australian to win Milan-San Remo. A better three months of form in that part of the season would be hard to find.

    Goss told Cyclingnews that it was a succession of events that was only...

  • Tour Down Under call-up makes Von Hoff rethink early season goals

    Race winner Steele Von Hoff is hugged by Genesys Wealth Advisers teammate Nathan Haas in New Norfolk.
    Article published:
    December 30, 2011, 1:30 GMT
    By:
    Alex Hinds

    Australian sprinter to forgo peaking at Nationals for better peformance in Adelaide

    As if Steele Von Hoff's year couldn't have gotten any better after a dominating 2011 season that culminated in a contract with the Chipotle Development Team, the young Australian sprinter learnt just before Christmas that he would be riding in the UniSA team at 14th Santos Tour Down Under.

    For the 23-year-old, the call-up, which gives him much a much needed taste of top tier racing, has meant a reshuffle in his early 2012 goals which had previously been a top performance in the elite men's criterium championships in Ballarat on January 5.

    Von Hoff explained to Cyclingnews that after consulting with his coach, Andrew Christie-Johnson, the two decided that putting his training back a week would still give him a chance to perform well at Nationals, but would open the way to being in top condition for the Tour Down Under.

    "I'll be taking it a little easier going into Nationals," said Von Hoff. "The big goal has to be the Tour Down Under - it's my first WorldTour race and I really want to perform well."

    "Of course I'm still taking Nationals very seriously. But the plan has definitely changed. Nationals would normally be one of the biggest races on my calendar but that's obviously been superseded now."

    Though he played down his chances for a possible stage win, Von Hoff did say that the big goal would be to try get on the podium at least once.

    "If I can get up there and maybe podium, I'd be absolutely delighted," said Von Hoff.

    Ahead of his much anticpated WorldTour debut, the Australian will line-up at the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic where he will be competing with the BikeBug team alongside some familiar faces, Anthony Giacoppo, Nathan Haas, and potential future Garmin teammate Heinrich Haussler.

  • search2retain announces roster for 2012 Australasian season

    The early break (l-r): Neil Van Der Ploeg and Brodie Talbot, both of Search2Retain/MyTeam2, Cameron Jennings (Budget Forklifts) and Nathan Haas (Genesys Wealth Advisers).
    Article published:
    December 30, 2011, 3:00 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Cameron Bayly and Nick Walker join nine-man outfit

    search2retain cycling released details of their 2012 squad today with an emphasis on more individual support for a smaller number of riders. The 2011 squad consisted of 14 riders and the 2012 squad has been trimmed back to a roster of nine.

    Team Director, Peter Shandon noted that the team achieved most of its objectives for 2011 with podiums in each road event they competed in and dominance in mountain bike events such as Tour de Timor.

    "We had two main objectives at the commencement of the season; develop our ability to ride together as a team and go for stage victories and I am really satisfied that we have made excellent progress in both areas," he explained.

    The team has added Cameron Bayly and Nick Walker to the squad for 2012. Nick Walker is a proven performer and will provide the team with additional criterium capability. Cameron Bayly is a promising under 23 rider and has been highly recommended by some of the biggest names in Australian cycling and is currently coached by Henk Vogels. Both are expected to flourish in the team culture that search2retain cycling has developed over the past three years.

    Team management believes that this will be a watershed year for the team. Both Luke Fetch and Bayly are serious contenders for under 23 titles. Fetch has already won the opening round of the Australian Mountain Bike National series cross country event in Perth last month following on from his 3rd place in October's Melbourne to Warrnambool.

    The team's elite men are all improving with the likes of Jay Bourke and Neil van Der Ploeg both finding form throughout the season. Bourke (ex professional triathlete and elite runner) has only been road racing for...