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First Edition Cycling News, Friday, November 12, 2010

Date published:
November 12, 2010, 0:00 GMT
  • Hughes inducted into Canadian Sports Hall of Fame

    Clara Hughes racing on the road
    Article published:
    November 11, 2010, 22:00 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Olympic road cycling and speedskating medallist honored in Calgary

    Clara Hughes of Winnipeg, Manitoba, was inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame last night in Calgary, Alberta. She is the sixth cyclist honoured in this fashion, joining Steve Bauer (2005), Curt Harnett (2005), Jocelyn Lovell (1985), Sylvia Burka (1977) and William 'Torchy' Peden (1955).

    Hughes, who received the Order of Canada on April 7, 2010, began her stellar cycling career in 1990, and competed in both road and track cycling sports at major international events such as Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and Pan American Games.

    "We would like to send our warmest congratulations to Clara. To this day, she continues to inspire kids across Canada to pursue an active lifestyle that includes competitive sports. Throughout her life, she has always been an ideal ambassador for cycling, embodying the noble values and the spirit of sport," said Greg Mathieu, chief executive officer and secretary general of the Canadian Cycling Association.

    Dual sport star

    In 2002, Hughes became the first Canadian to win Olympic medals in both Summer and Winter Games with her performance in speed skating at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.

    She participated in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games, winning two bronze medals at the 1996 Games in Atlanta in the road race and the individual time trial.

    An 18-time Canadian national cycling champion, Hughes won the silver medal in the time trial at the 1995 UCI World Road Championships, held in Duitama, Colombia.

    She also participated in the 1991, 1995, 1999, and 2003 Pan American Games and won a total of eight Pan American Games medals. In Commonwealth Games competition, Hughes won the gold medal in the time trial and bronze medal in the points race in 2002, as well as a silver medal in the team time trial in 1994.

    She served as a commentator for the cycling events for the CBC's coverage of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

    Hughes...

  • Greipel returns to defend Tour Down Under title

    André Greipel (HTC-Columbia) talking to German television.
    Article published:
    November 11, 2010, 23:21 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Showdown expected amongst world's best sprinters

    The prospect of a match up between some of the world's best sprinters in Australia took another step towards happening with Santos Tour Down Under organisers today announcing that André Greipel will return to the event in 2011.

    The defending and two-time overall winner will debut for the Omega Pharma-Lotto squad at the race in Adelaide, South Australia on 16-23 January; he'll be the leader of a strong lineup that includes experienced Belgian Mario Aerts and his talented young countrymen Jürgen Roelandts and Olivier Kaisen, Spanish rider Vicente Reynes plus former HTC-Columbia representatives Marcel Sieberg and Adam Hansen.

    Australian rider Hansen also makes his debut for the Belgian team on home turf - he and Sieberg were brought into the team to support Greipel, having achieved success with the big German during their tenure at Bob Stapleton's squad.

    "It's great to see last year's champion return to defend his title, which has been a tradition of our race each year," said race director Mike Turtur. "Greipel is a formidable sprinter and our race suits him well, so it will be interesting to see if he can be the first rider to win three editions of the Santos Tour Down Under."

    In January this year Greipel became only the second rider - after local favourite Stuart O'Grady - to win two editions of Australia's premier stage race and with a strong team behind him the sprinter from Rostock is a good chance of adding another ochre jersey to his collection.

    As reported on Cyclingnews on Wednesday, it's been confirmed that he'll be up against fellow sprinter Tyler Farrar; the American will be making his first trip to Australia for the Tour Down Under next year as the Garmin squad debuts in its latest incarnation: Garmin-Cervélo.

  • Substantial updates to Fulcrum's 2011 wheel range

    Fulcrum's top-end road wheels are mostly carryover for 2011 but major updates come at the mid-range.
    Article published:
    November 11, 2010, 23:25 GMT
    By:
    James Huang

    Refinement on the road

    Fulcrum's biggest changes on the road side of its 2011 wheel range fall squarely in the mid-range – right where consumers of more typical incomes are more likely to enjoy their benefits.

    Leading that charge is the all-new Racing 3 non-tubeless clincher (the tubeless-compatible 2-Way Fit version carries over unchanged), which drops an impressive 104g from last year's version for a total claimed weight of just 1,555g for the pair. Changes include a new milled-down extrusion, fewer and more slimmed-down straight-pull bladed stainless steel spokes, and new alloy hubs with oversized aluminum axles and interchangeable alloy freehub bodies.

    Further down the range, the updated Racing 7 alloy clincher goes on a diet, too, shedding about 80g per pair from last year – and all from the rim where it matters most. A mix of straight-pull and J-bend 14g stainless steel spokes join the hoops to new alloy hubs, which feature a larger-diameter driveside rear flange for improved power transfer. Claimed weight is 1,850g per pair.

    Fulcrum has also added 'cross-specific versions of the popular Racing 5 and 7 clinchers. The so-called 'CX' variants are identical to the road versions but for additional seals on the hub bearings to better protect against dirt and water. Though Fulcrum targets these models to the mud crowd, road riders who frequently train in inclement might want to consider them as well as long as they can accept the additional seal drag.

    Upper-end models are essentially carryover with the notable exception of the Racing Zero, which gets the company's USB ceramic bearing cartridges as standard equipment for 2011.

    As before, the usual Fulcrum trademark features carry through nearly all of the range, including two-to-one rear lacing for more even spoke tension and balanced rims that help offset the weight of the valve stem – using unmilled sections on higher-end aluminum rims, a pair of thicker spokes on lesser...

  • Delgado: "Contador is going to be punished"

    Alberto Contador attacks Andy Schleck near the fog-shrouded summit of the Tourmalet.
    Article published:
    November 12, 2010, 0:09 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Former Tour winner says Clenbuterol will tarnish countryman

    Former Tour de France winner Pedro Delgado believes Alberto Contador will receive a sanction for his positive doping test taken during his successful Tour campaign this year.

    Contador tested positive for Clenbuterol in a sample taken during the Tour's second rest day in Pau, his case the subject of intense speculation since it was publically revealed he failed the test during last month's UCI Road World Championships in Geelong, Australia.

    Spanish news agency EFE reports that Delgado, who also won two editions of the Vuelta a España, said that the nature of the substance for which Contador tested positive "is punishable".

    Delgado himself tested positive to a banned substance during his successful Tour campaign. Samples taken in Villard-de-Lans on July 15 that year tested positive for probenecid, a masking agent that delays other illegal substances from reaching the urine, keeping the urine 'cleaner' for longer.

    Delgado avoided sanction because probenecid wasn't on the UCI's list of banned substances - despite being on those of the International Olympic Committee and the French Cycling Federation - and hence he rode into Paris as the victor of the 1988 Tour de France.

    In August that year Sports Illustrated described Delgado's yellow jersey "the most soiled yellow jersey in the history of the Tour de France".

    The man known as 'Perico' can therefore speak with authority about the nuances of banned substances and the damage it can do a rider's reputation in addition to the possible sanctions that result from their use.

    "Contador has suffered irreparable damage already no matter what," Delgado told Spanish sports daily Marca. "It will punish you. He [Contador] is optimistic but the presence of clenbuterol is 'punishable'," he added.

    "I would not penalise him, but seeing the how the matter has developed I think that ultimately they will punish him," Delgado continued. "A...

  • Jens Zemke joins High Road from Cervélo

    Bob Stapleton's High Road squad will wear the Columbia
    Article published:
    November 12, 2010, 6:14 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Experienced German a valuable asset to American team

    High Road Sports has announced that former professional rider Jens Zemke will join its team of sports directors for 2011.

    He has directed teams for the past nine years, which includes a seven-year stint at Equipe Nürnberger and the last two seasons with the Cervélo TestTeam.

    Consequently, Zemke will work with both the men's and women's teams for next year.

    "After seven years with the Equipe Nürnberger women and two years with Cervelo TestTeam, this is another step forward for me. In my eyes, this team is the best professional team in the world," said Zemke.

    "Bob Stapleton and his crew have always been successful in finding young talent and developing riders; I'm proud to be part of this operation."

    Zemke joins sports directors Brian Holm, Allan Peiper, Valerio Piva, Jan Shaffrath, and Ronny Lauke plus team manager Rolf Aldag, who said of his new charge: "Zemke is the perfect answer to this new position in our team.

    "He is someone who has longtime success and experience in women's cycling as a sports director, plus a backround in professional men's cycling as a pro rider and sports director, so both our men and women will benefit from his knowledge and experience."

  • Riccardo Riccò: "The Cobra is dead"

    Riccardo Riccò (Vacansoleil) smirks on the podium.
    Article published:
    November 12, 2010, 9:37 GMT
    By:
    Daniel Friebe

    Vacansoleil climber says that he's a changed man

    Riccardo Riccò claims that he is ready to shed his bad-boy image – as well the nickname, “il Cobra”, which came to symbolize the former drug-cheat’s venomous nature on the bike and off it.

    “I’m no longer aggressive like I used to be,” Riccò told Cyclingnews on Thursday. “Once upon a time it would have bothered me if the Italian papers talked more about [Ivan] Basso, [Vincenzo] Nibali and [Michele] Scarponi than me, but not any more. The phoney wars don’t interest me any more. I’ve calmed down a lot. I’m tranquillo now.”

    He then announced with a chuckle: “The Cobra is dead! You don’t believe me? It’s true…”

    The Italian was returning home to Emilia-Romagna after two days of testing with new coach Aldo Sassi at the Centro Mapei near Milan.

    Sassi, who recently recruited Damiano Cunego to a stable of riders already including Ivan Basso and Cadel Evans, told La Gazzetta dello Sport in October that working with Riccò would make a perfect “final gamble” as he battles with a brain tumour. Riccò read the article and called Sassi to accept his invitation.

    Riccò told Cyclingnews yesterday that the pair’s first meeting had been about much more than just crunching numbers.

    “He wanted to get to know me a lot better and meet my family,” Riccò said. “We spent a lot of time talking my life and my cycling career up until now. We also did an endurance test and a VO2 Max test, but they weren’t the important things. Aldo was more interested in what I had to say.”

    Many view Riccò’s decision to link up with Sassi as a deliberate and perhaps cynical attempt to regain credibility after his positive test for CERA at the 2008 Tour de France. Sassi has said previously that he can vouch for any of...

  • Fuglsang decided before Tour de France to join Luxembourg team

    Jakob Fuglsang (Team Saxo Bank) shows off his medal and jersey.
    Article published:
    November 12, 2010, 9:52 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    Young Dane eager to continue work with Kim Andersen

    Jakob Fuglsang has said that he had opted to join the Luxembourg Pro Cycling Project even before the Tour de France, and that Team Saxo Bank owner Bjarne Riis was aware of his decision. Fuglsang explained that he was eager to continue working with sports director Kim Andersen and wanted the security of a new contract, while Riis had not yet announced a sponsor for the coming year.

    "Bjarne Riis knew about my decision even before the Tour,” Fuglsang told spn.dk. “He had sensed that something was afoot. He offered me an extension a week before the Tour, but in contrast to Team Luxembourg, he could not promise anything specific in writing or wage, as there was still uncertainty about a future sponsorship."

    Riis has said that he felt hard done by to learn that so many riders were leaving him, and that they rode the Tour knowing this. Fuglsang denied that there was any problem in that respect.

    "No, Team Saxo Bank's future was uncertain, and it was no problem for my performance during the Tour knowing that I would ride for another team. Quite the contrary. It was just nice to have control of my future, unlike some of the other riders who rode in uncertainty about where they should continue. "

    Saxo Bank had announced it would end its sponsorship at the end of the season, and did not renew its sponsorship until the signing of Alberto Contador was announced the beginning of August.

    Kim Andersen played a major role in the 25-year-old's decision to join the newly formed team. “He is my good friend, and he has always taken good care of me. He has meant a lot to my development, is always positive and says straight out if there is something he is not happy with. In the cycling environment, he is, if not the best, then at least one of the best sports directors.”

    He added, “Kim Anderson doesn't just aim for results here and now. He's thinking more long term and his primary goal is that we...

  • ProTeam points system not perfect, says Madiot

    Marc Madiot is close to completing his nine man roster for the 2009 Tour de France
    Article published:
    November 12, 2010, 10:17 GMT
    By:
    Hedwig Kröner

    FDJ manager criticises UCI ranking over ethics

    Marc Madiot, manager of the French FDJ squad, has been critical of the new points system developed by the UCI to evaluate the sporting value of teams. According to the classification, which determines whether a team is eligible to receive a ProTeam (formerly ProTour) licence, FDJ is in 21st position and will thus be relegated to the second division of the cycling hierarchy, Professional Continental level.

    While Madiot did not want to create any polemics and stated that the new system had its worth, he also insisted that some of its details should be reviewed.

    "It's moving in the right direction, but it's annoying that some people have had ethics-related issues and have still qualified [for a ProTeam licence]. OK, everybody deserves a second chance, but if it was decided that a rider who received a suspension cannot bring his points to a team prepared to sign him, it would act like a safeguard," Madiot told L'Equipe on Friday.

    At present, the sporting value classification takes into account those points gained by riders that have come back to the sport from doping-related suspensions. However, Dutch squad Vacansoleil asked that its 2011 signing of Ezekiel Mosquera (currently under investigation after returning an adverse analytical finding for Hydroxyethyl starch at the Vuelta a España) not be taken into consideration.

    "This situation shows that there are real problems. When [UCI president] Pat McQuaid starts saying that he would be in favour of four-year suspensions instead of two years, it means that he probably understood himself that the sytsem has it limits."

    Recently, McQuaid has spoken in favour of doubling the standard suspension period of two-years for serious doping offences to four years in the hope of creating a stronger deterrent.

    But Madiot also bemoaned the late announcement of the new criterion, and his sponsor's disappointment at the team's relegation. "When we started putting...