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First Edition Cycling News, Friday, May 2, 2014

Date published:
May 02, 2014, 1:00 BST
  • Bos looking for first Tour de France appearance

    Kroupis and Bos enjoying a handshake
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 12:54 BST
    Cycling News

    Dutch sprinter hoping for spot in team for July

    Five-time track world champion Theo Bos (Belkin) made the move from the boards to the tarmac in 2009. With five full seasons on the road under his belt, the Dutch sprinter is getting hungry for his first Tour de France appearance.

    After his track days Bos is used to being near the top of the sport and he has set his sights on La Grande Boucle. “I would find it really beautiful. This race is above everything,” he told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.

    “Whether it is realistic? I think so. I do not know. Whether or not it's about to happen this year, I think now I can handle it physically. I have done more mileage than ever this winter, while I have lost no explosiveness.”

    Bos has never completed a grand tour - he abandoned both the 2010 Vuelta a España and 2012 Giro d'Italia, and had to pull out on the eve of the 2013 Vuelta when his asthma medication caused a dip in his cortisol levels.

    The Dutch rider had a fine start to the year with four stage victories at the Tour de Langkawi. However his return to Europe hasn’t been quite as fruitful, with second at the Handzame Classic his best result this spring.

    Bos is now in action at the Tour of Turkey. It started off well with third on the opening stage, but he ended up hitting the back of one of the race vehicles after crossing the line. Mark Cavendish has been dominating the sprint competition in Turkey, but Bos is happy with how he has matched up against the Manx Missile.

    "I have been a bit better. In the last two stages, there have been opportunities to beat him,” he explained. "It gives us a huge...

  • Riccò: I was in the wrong place at the wrong time

    Riccardo Riccò with Amore e Vita patron Ivano Fanini
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 13:34 BST
    Cycling News

    Italian caught buying doping products in Livorno

    Riccardo Riccò has denied that the doping products seized by police in a car park in Livorno on Tuesday were destined for him and claimed that he was “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

    A team from NAS, the branch of Italian police specialising in drugs and health and safety, apprehended Riccò and his fellow former professional Matteo Cappè while they were reportedly in the process of purchasing EPO and testosterone in the car park of a McDonald’s outside Livorno on Tuesday afternoon.

    Thirty doses of EPO and artificial testosterone were seized from the two dealers – named by Gazzetta dello Sport as Antonio Catarsi and hospital employee Fabrizio Boccolini – in the car park, while a search of their homes unearthed 100 more doses at a reported value of €15,000.

    Police from NAS also found €1,170 in cash in Riccò’s jacket when they searched the car in which he and Cappè had arrived.

    “I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, the matter has nothing to do with me,” Riccò said according to ANSA.

    Riccò’s lawyer Fiorenzo Alessi claimed that his client was not in Livorno to purchase EPO. “No doping product was seized from Riccardo. He’s making a statement in order to clear up the matter with magistrates,” Alessi told ANSA, adding that the money found in the car did not belong to Riccò: “It wasn’t his, it was his friend’s.”

    Riccò has not raced as a professional since 2011, when he was rushed to hospital after an...

  • Tour of the Gila crash hospitalises multiple riders

    Long open roads for today’s racing
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 15:15 BST
    Pat Malach

    14 riders abandon after stage one in massive pile-up

    A massive pileup Wednesday about 20km from the finish of stage 1 at the Tour of the Gila sent as many as 10 riders to the hospital, two of whom were airlifted more than 200 miles to the Tucson Medical Center.

    Silber Pro Cycling, a Canadian Continental team, said riders Nicolas Masbourian and Derrick St. John were conscious and coherent and were recovering at the Tucson hospital Wednesday night.

    The crash occurred on a slightly downhill stretch of straight road as 5-hour Energy and Hincapie Sportswear were contributing to a chase to bring back four escapees who had built a gap of more than 10 minutes.

    Touched wheels or a moments inattention caused several riders to go down on the right hand side of the road. The initial reaction sent riders peeling off into the long grass lining the ditch, while the high speeds caused an extended pileup in the middle of the road, launching bikes and riders into the air as they tried to stop or avoid the carnage.

    "Everyone was braking, and then people from the back were shooting into you," said California Giant-Specialized's Yannick Eckmann, who suffered some road rash in the crash.

    "I went in and then I was under all the bikes," Eckmann said. "Then I got up and looked around as was like, 'fuck.' Half our team was in it, which was sad to see, but I guess some of us got lucky. Some people looked way worse. It was on a downhill and super fast. One guy went down, and then the whole road blocked up. It was just disaster."

    Another rider said the crash was like being tumbled around in a clothes washer.

    The Silber team took the brunt of the damage, but 25-30 riders needed medical attention after the stage. Jelly Belly-Maxxis had six riders go...

  • Taaramae considered quitting cycling

    Rein Taaramae (Cofidis, Solutions Credits) celebrates the Stage 3 win at the Tour of Turkey
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 16:14 BST
    Sam Dansie

    Tour of Turkey leader happy to be living in the moment

    Cofidis rider Rein Taaramäe has admitted that he contemplated quitting cycling after two wilderness years lost to injuries and bad health.

    But - with the current Tour of Turkey’s leader's jersey set fairly firmly on his shoulders - he is enjoying the moment and the return to the spotlight that last fell strongly upon him at the 2011 Vuelta a Espanña. The Estonian won the summit finish to Lagos la Somiedo on stage 14, and earlier that year finished 11th at the Tour de France.

    A month ago, Taaramäe underwent a larynx operation in Estonia to remove an obstruction that was inhibiting his breathing. The results appear to have been successful.

    Nevertheless, the recently-turned 27-year-old is taking nothing for granted. Taaramäe said he still waiting to confirm if the surgery has completely alleviated the breathing problem.

    "It's too early to say," he told Cyclingnews on Thursday at the start of stage 5 in Marmaris. "[After the operation] I did three one-day races, Paris-Camembert, Tour du Finistère, and La Flèche Wallonne just before and I was really bad."

    However, after the opening to flat stages on Turkey’s southwest coast, the "old sensations” began to return. And before the start of the decisive stage three to Elmali - the longest and hilliest stage of the eight-day tour - he modestly tipped himself for a strong showing.

    He said: "I worried, but then I came here and I passed two flat stages and I felt so good – the old sensations of before – and I started to think, to dream, I could do something really good on the hard stage."

    He attacked a group of favourites 3km from the summit and beat his co-attacker

  • Lotto Belisol seeking stage wins at Giro d'Italia

    Maxime Monfort (Lotto Belisol)
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 20:28 BST
    Cycling News

    Monfort aiming at top 10 in GC

    The Lotto Belisol team announced its squad for the upcoming Giro d'Italia today, naming Maxime Monfort as the team's rider for the general classification.

    The team will head to the start in Belfast on May 9 with stage wins at the top of its agenda. They will be without sprinter Andre Greipel, who is coming back from a shoulder injury. He was aiming to do both the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France this year, but a crash in Gent-Wevelgem required surgery to his shoulder a month ago.

    Instead, the team of Sander Armée, Lars Bak, Kenny Dehaes, Gert Dockx, Adam Hansen, Monfort, Tosh Van der Sande, Dennis Vanendert and Tim Wellens will aim for breakaways and sprint stages.

    "A stage win is the main goal of the team," directeur sportif Bart Leysen said. "The past five years we were always able to take a victory.

    "Kenny Dehaes is our man for the flat stages. Tim Wellens gets a free role. He shouldn't think about the GC, just try to join breakaways. Lars Bak, Adam Hansen and Tosh Van der Sande can also let a break come to a good end. It's the job of Gert Dockx and Dennis Vanendert to help prepare the bunch sprints. Next to that they can also protect Maxime. Sander Armée has to stay with Monfort as long as possible in the mountains."

    Leysen thinks Monfort can realistically aim for a top 10 on the general classification. "Of course, he could also win a stage. The first individual time trial of 41.9 kilometers suits Maxime," Leysen said.

    "The Giro will be decided in the final week, in the first two weeks we have to see...

  • Daniel Holloway on a roll at USA Crits Speed Week

    Daniel Holloway will race with Mike's Bikes, but hopes to go back to the pro level
    Article published:
    May 01, 2014, 22:30 BST
    Kirsten Frattini

    Athens Twilight crashes spark rider-safety discussions

    Daniel Holloway kicked off his season with back-to-back wins at America’s classic criteriums; Athens Twilight and Historic Roswell on Saturday and Sunday. The events opened the USA Crits Speed Week held from April 26 to May 3 throughout South Carolina and Georgia — a five-criterium series that his team Athlete Octane Cycling aims to win.

    During Athens Twilight, Holloway won the field sprint of the elite men's criterium out of what was left of a peloton marred by multiple crashes. He won the race ahead of Ty Magner (Hincapie Sportswear Development) and Frank Travieso (UnitedHealthcare p/b 706 Project). At Historic Roswell, he won the sprint ahead of Andres Alzate (Champion System-Stan’s NoTubes) and Stephen Hyde (Astellas Cycling).

    “Winning Athens on my first appearance was pretty unexpected,” Holloway told Cyclingnews. “I’m over the moon about it. The team has been going well since we started racing in Arizona at the start of the year and this result was a product of how well all of the guys mesh. Speed Week was a really big goal for the first half of the year for the team. Personally, I wanted to be fit and be in the mix, how it's all played out so far is just amazing. I can't thank the guys enough for their support and all the support from our sponsors getting us the best possible tools for the job.” 

    The series continued at the Downtown Walterboro criterium on Wednesday in South Carolina, where Holloway made it three-for-three. He won the sprint ahead of Travieso and Ricardo Escuela (Incycle-Predator Components).

    The final two races are the Spartanburg Regional Classic on May 2 and the Gaffney Criterium on May 3 also in South Carolina. “Our overall goals for the team is to continue to race as team, race smart and be at the front of the race.” Holloway said. “If we continue to do those things, I believe all of the rest will fall in to place here at...

  • Travis Meyer released from hospital

    Travis Meyer (Drapac) leads Jens Voigt (Trek), Andriy Grivko (Astana) and Jérôme Cousin (Europcar) in the break.
    Article published:
    May 02, 2014, 4:00 BST
    Cycling News

    Drapac rider recovering from training incident

    Travis Meyer (Drapac) was training in preparation of the Presidential Tour of Turkey in Andorra when an accident, in which he suffered multiple injuries including a fractured skull, broken jaw and arm on April 12 saw him hospitalised. The 24-year-old has now been released from a Barcelona hospital and has returned to his European home in Girona, stating he was "lucky" he didn't incur greater injuries than sustained.

    "My recovery is coming along really well," said Meyer. "I am much better than I was even a week ago."

    "I was lucky to end up with 'only' a broken jaw near my chin, a fracture in my joint near my ear, fractured arm, bruised lungs and some bruising all down my right side."

    "I have two plates in my jaw, my jaw wired shut and a plate and screws in my arm," said Meyer who is currently only able to consume liquid meals.

    Despite not remembering the collision, the driver of the vehicle who hit Meyer told police that he turned out of a side street while the cyclist was travelling down a slight descent and admitted fault for the accident. He also helped Meyer immediately after the accident and accompanied Meyer's wife, Genna, to the hospital.

    "The number one person that I need to thank is my wife, Genna. She has been by my side through the whole ordeal - literally, as she slept in a chair next to me for a week - and the way she handled the situation was amazing," Meyer said.

    "She had to deal with everyone from nurses, doctors, insurance and alert people at home and the way she handled it was incredible.

    "My mum and mother in law flew over to help Genna and me and that was such a great help. Our families have been very supportive and made sure we...

  • Kristoff back to winning ways in Germany

    Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) presented with the winner's trophy on the podium at the GP Frankfurt
    Article published:
    May 02, 2014, 6:50 BST
    Cycling News

    Norwegian spoils Degenkolb's home race

    Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) notched his first win since claiming victory at the Milano-San Remo in March by beating John Degenkolb (Giant-Shimano) at the Rund um den Finanzplatz Eschborn-Frankfurt.

    Kristoff had enjoyed a small period off the bike after a long Classics campaign and spoiled the party in Frankfurt for Degenkolb whose wife, Anna, organises the race.

    "I never expected this before the race. I have to be honest, after Paris-Roubaix I took a well-deserved break and these past few days, I just did long distance trainings plus I had a travel day yesterday. On the bike didn't even feel so good in the beginning," Kristoff said.

    Praising his team, Kristof added: "But then when you see your teammates doing a perfect job...the only thing I had to do was to follow. So in the end I started to feel better and better.

    "Moreover I never start in a race with the idea that I will not finish. I will always do the sprint and when I had such a perfect train in front of me, it was my duty to try to win. I am really happy to put my name on the winners list."

    It was in the rain that Kristoff won his first monument when he beat Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) at La Primavera and in Frankfurt, Kristoff once again prevailed in the tough conditions with a well-timed sprint.

    "I started my sprint at 300 meters from the finish [and] the last 200 meters I was...