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First Edition Cycling News, Friday, November 11, 2011

Date published:
November 11, 2011, 0:00 GMT
  • Baker calls hacking case "deeply flawed"

    Floyd Landis in 2006 giving a press conference after testing positive in the Tour de France
    Article published:
    November 10, 2011, 18:15 GMT
    Cycling News

    Landis coach convicted of receiving hacked documents

    Floyd Landis and his former coach Arnie Baker were convicted today in a bizarre hacking scandal involving an international conspiracy, each receiving a one-year suspended sentence for their role.

    Baker called the proceedings "deeply flawed", countering assertions of AFLD laywers that the pair had "made ​​fun of the world by not coming to trial" by stating that he had been summoned to appear in court at his own expense and then threatened with arrest if he set foot on French soil.

    "This case against me appears to be a deeply flawed process from start to finish, designed to protect a national French institution and cover up its apparent sloppy work and incompetence," Baker said in a press release.

    The case dates back to 2006, when Baker launched his "Wiki-defense", which aimed to prove that the test results showing exogenous testosterone in Landis's 2006 Tour de France samples were flawed. The pair used documents from the French anti-doping laboratory (LNDD) which performed the tests in the defense, pointing out flaws in the documentation and analysis in an attempt to discredit the results. They lost the case and Landis was ultimately stripped of his title, but that wasn't the end of the case.

    French authorities claimed Landis and Baker had hired hackers to dig into the LNDD's computers to obtain the files used in his defense, but Landis said the documents had been sent to him anonymously, .

    According to the Wall Street Journal, prosecutors were unable to establish a definite link between Lands, Baker and a French national living in Morocco named Alain...

  • WADA refuses funding for plasticizer test

    It's all about blood - performance-enhancing methods abound in pro cycling
    Article published:
    November 10, 2011, 19:55 GMT
    Laura Weislo

    Segura's grant declined in favor of alternative approach

    The World Anti-Doping Agency has confirmed it has denied funding for a follow-up study on a test for plasticizers which was designed to detect blood transfusions.

    The test for the chemical di-(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP) was developed by the head of the IOC-accredited laboratory in Barcelona, Professor Jordi Segura, and was studied over the past year by WADA. The chemical is used to make plastic bags and tubes used in blood transfusions, and a spike in DEHP could indicate blood manipulation in athletes.

    However, the chemical is also widely used in consumer products such as "imitation leather, rainwear, footwear, upholstery, flooring, tablecloths, shower curtains, food packaging materials, and children's toys", according to A report by Bloomberg speculated that the difficulty of proving the chemical originated from transfusion equipment and not food packaging was the reason behind the grant refusal.

    Earlier this year, researchers in Lausanne were working on validating the test, and admitted it might not be sufficient alone to support an anti-doping violation.

    Last year, WADA general director David Howman gave his support to Segura's idea to apply the test, which has been used in the food industry, to anti-doping controls, but at the time the test was not fully validated.

    Segura applied to WADA for funding of a follow-up study, but while WADA contributed funds toward the initial study, it declined to continue to fund the approach.

    "WADA's Laboratory Committee decided at the time that there were alternative ways to collect the evidence to the one proposed by Prof. Segura's research," WADA's media relations manager...

  • Evans can repeat Tour de France win, Burghardt says

    Marcus Burghardt (BMC Racing Team) looking forward to the start, as well as to the birth of his child in a few days time.
    Article published:
    November 10, 2011, 22:25 GMT
    Cycling News

    BMC rider also looking to strong Classics team

    Cadel Evans could win the Tour de France again in 2012, according to BMC Racing Team teammate Marcus Burghardt. The defending champion will have a strong team supporting him, the German said.

    “The two long time trials are surely advantageous for Cadel, and as defending champion, he will be one of the top favourites anyway,” Burghardt told  “But with 3500 kilometers, you never know what might happened. Anything can happen suddenly, as we saw this year with Contador.

    “You need a team which stands together behind you.  We had that this year.”

    In addition to his helper duties, Burghardt is a Classics specialist, who won Gent-Wevelgem in 2007. This year he didn't have the form to do well in those races, so he was satisfied with being a domestique. 

    But for the coming year he sees good chances for himself in the Spring Classics, although he knows the presence of Philippe Gilbert and Thor Hushovd might reduce him to the helper role again.

    “That can happen. But on the other hand, with those two we have better chances to ride offensively and play more options.  With Gilbert and Hushovd we can react differently and perhaps that will increase my chances. I just have to attack early enough. ... I look at this development positively.”

    BMC will have an exceptionally strong team for the Classics, but Burghardt knows that is no guarantee for success. “We were the strongest team at this year's Tour of Flanders, with an unbelievably good team. But we didn't win, instead it was Nick Nuyens, who earlier in the race had fallen back. The strongest team on paper or strongest rider doesn't always win.”

    Looking to 2012 and those very...

  • Grenfell seals move to Competitive Cyclist Racing Team team manager and former pro-rider Trent Wilson congratulates Philip Grenfell on his stage win.
    Article published:
    November 11, 2011, 2:00 GMT
    Alex Hinds

    Australian hoping to help team on new NRC criterium series

    Phil Grenfell will join American continental team Competitive Cyclist Racing Team in 2012, with the 22-year-old doing enough to impress team manager Gordon Fraser in this year's Australian National Road Series to seal the move to the professional ranks.

    Grenfell rode this season with domestic team, picking up wins at the Tour of Gippsland, Tour of the Murray River and Tour of Tasmania. Though there had been discussion to stay in Australia, Grenfell felt with the advent of the NRC criterium series, it was a perfect time to make the switch overseas.

    "It was a goal I had at the beginning of the year," Grenfell told Cyclingnews. "To have a good season here, get some results, and move over to the US. I just thought that the racing over there suits my characteristics and it’s also a great pathway for progression. [ manager Trent Wilson] thought the same thing. So to be able to actually now be doing it is perfect.

    "Going to Europe would’ve been too much too soon. This way I get to go to the US and come back late in the season for a few races in Australia as well."

    The Australian explained that Competitive Cyclist Racing's lack of sprinting depth would also allow him plenty of opportunities next seaon. The team dominated the stage racing calendar with Francisco Mancebo, but were not quite as consistent when it came bunch dashes and criteriums.

    "That was definitely something that attracted me to the team, the fact that they don’t have that many guys that can finish off a race. Gord [Fraser] was saying to me he felt the team gave away a lot of results [this season] because they lacked a sprinter. That’s a role I hope to fill."

    Grenfell will link up with the team in January but is first hoping to win the Australian criterium championship in Buninyong, a race that is likely to be see Grenfell competing against some pretty familiar faces.

  • Bennett to link up with RadioShack-Nissan-Trek

    George Bennett (Trek/Livestrong) was the last rider to stay with the race leader on todays tough climb.
    Article published:
    November 11, 2011, 5:49 GMT
    Cycling News

    New Zealand gets another WorldTour rider with 21-year-old climber

    George Bennett has confirmed that he will ride with the RadioShack-Nissan-Trek squad next season, after earlier this year completing the Tour of Utah and USA Pro Cycling Challenge with the team as a trainee.

    The 21-year-old will become one of the team's neo-pro's, joining a star-studded roster that already includes the Schleck brothers, Chris Horner and Fabian Cancellara among others.

    His biggest result of 2011 came in the Ronde de l'Isard while riding for the Trek-Livestrong team where he picked up respectable second overall.

    Speaking to Bennett explained that going to the WorldTour in 2012 was something that had come earlier than expected.

    "I never really set time-specific goals, but I suppose I'd expected to be with Livestrong for two years. 21 is young to be there, but I won't be the first 21-year-old to ride in the WorldTour.

    "I'm happy [to be joining RadioShack], I'm really proud of it, it's hard to take it all in. Now I just have to step up [my level], getting a contract is only the first step of being a professional."

    Bennett joins countryman Greg Henderson (Sky) and Julian Dean (GreenEdge) in the sport's top tier. He has recently finished riding the Powernet Tour of Southland, where he also wrote a blog for Cyclingnews.

  • Project 1t4i wanted to sign Tony Martin

    Spektakel van Steenwijk champion Tony Martin (HTC-Highroad)
    Article published:
    November 11, 2011, 9:35 GMT
    Cycling News

    World time trial champion would have fit well with team

    Team Project 1t4i has a number of Germans on its 2012 squad, including top sprinter Marcel Kittel, but it had hoped to add one more. The one that got away was World time trial champion Tony Martin.

    “We had very good talks, partially because both side have similar views of cycling, whether it is training, technical, equipment or organisation,” team manager Iwan Spekenbrink told “We were close to an agreement. Unfortunately he decided for Quick Step. We respect that and it changes nothing about our good impression that we have of Tony as a cyclist and person.”

    Martin announced in September that he would ride for the new Omega Pharma-Quick Step team next season.

    “When it became clear that HTC would stop at the end of the season, we went after Tony,” Spekenbrink said. “He is a first-class ride and as a personality he would fit in well with us too. He has a similar background as Marcel Kittel and John Degenkolb, and was earlier with the Thüringer Energie Team.”

    1t4i, known this year as Skil-Shimano, is not giving up hope on signing Martin in the future. “In any case, Tony is a rider in whom we will continue to be interested.”

  • Rohregger to RadioShack-Nissan in 2012

    Best young rider is now Leopold König of Team NetApp
    Article published:
    November 11, 2011, 10:30 GMT
    Cycling News

    Austrian climber signs two-year contract with new team

    Thomas Rohregger will ride for RadioShack-Nissan-Trek for the next two years. The Austrian announced the news this week.

    Rohregger, 28, was with Leopard Trek this season. His future was uncertain after the announcement that Leopard Trek and RadioShack would merge for the coming year.

    “I'm very happy and proud to be part of the RadioShack-Nissan-Trek Team. What a great team and collection of riders!! Can't wait to get the new season started. Looking forward to battle with you guys on the roads!” he wrote on his Facebook page.

    “The team has shown me a lot of trust, it was already clear during the Vuelta that I could stay,” he told the APA news agency.

    Rohregger attended the team's first get-together earlier this month,and he knows what he can look forward to in 2012. “The Giro will be my first highlight, this race suits me.” In addition, “I absolutely want to be at the start at the Olympics, that is a difficult course which is often underestimated.”

    He rode for the Austrian Elk Haus team from 2005 to 2008, before joining Team Milram for two years. He won the Tour of Austria in 2008, finishing fourth in the race this year.

  • Video: Beyond the Peloton and Cervelo part ways

    The Cervélo TestTeam gained wild card status.
    Article published:
    November 11, 2011, 10:46 GMT
    Daniel Benson

    Canadian film company to remain in cycling

    Beyond the Peloton and Cervelo have ended their partnership after three years of collaboration. The Canadian film company have vowed to keep making cycling films in the future. “We plan to bring some more content to the cycling world, so stay tuned. Cycling is passionate and dear to us and we want to continue to tell stories,” Joe Finkleman told Cyclingnews.

    Beyond the Peloton was a concept that Finkleman and Booker Sim designed in 2008 while shooting commercials for Cervelo. The pair approached then Cervelo head Gerard Vroomen with a proposal. The project grew and spanned three full seasons and ran for over 30 episodes, some of which were shown on Cyclingnews.

    “I think it was mid-November in 2008 and we got wind that Cervelo was going to create the Cervelo Test Team.  It was a perfect fit. Cervelo owned the team, I knew the cycling world and Booker had produced plenty of documentaries. We approached Gerard Vroomen with the idea and he liked it.  He saw value in producing BTP and really believed in the project and giving something back to the fans. Gerard is every bit responsible for the success of BTP as anyone, because without him being involved, it never would have come to fruition.”

    In their first season Beyond the Peloton shot 15 episodes, with 12 following in 2010 and then 7 in 2011, with the film crew moving to Garmin-Cervelo team at the start of this season. It would be their final year of collaboration but saw some of the team’s best work, some of which is still locked behind closed doors and may not be released.

    While Finkleman added that he was working on new projects he also picked out several memorable moments from the past few years.

    “Heinrich’s loss to Cavendish in the 2009 edition of...