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First Edition Cycling News, January 9, 2009

Date published:
January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
  • Sastre, Armstrong in February's Procycling

    Lance Armstrong is back on the cover of Procycling
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany

    The February 2009 edition of our sister magazine, Procycling (issue 121), has gone on sale in the UK...

    The February 2009 edition of our sister magazine, Procycling (issue 121), has gone on sale in the UK and will soon be available in the US and the rest of the world. The cover star is Lance Armstrong, who Procycling were given exclusive access to during Astana's December training camp in Tenerife. Rather than asking the questions everyone else has been asking the seven-time Tour champion, Procycling gave their readers the chance to put their own questions to Armstrong, it resulted in an illuminating exchange – and one that's fired up debate on the message boards at bikeradar.com

    Also in the February edition of Procycling, 2008 Tour champ Carlos Sastre reveals the story behind the breakdown of his relationship with CSC-Saxo Bank boss Bjarne Riis before his move to the Cervélo Test Team for 2009. Cyclo-cross's man of the moment, world champion Lars Boom, talks to us about his plans to dominate the road scene in future. Procycling also meets SRM power meter founder Ulrich Schoberer and examines how measuring power output has transformed the sport.

    Procycling's series of articles covering Armstrong's seven Tour wins turns to the 2000 race and focuses on the epic stage to Mont Ventoux and the epic struggle the Texan had that year with Marco Pantani. Procycling talks to those close to the Italian climber and the American champion to find out why the relationship between the pair degenerated into accusation and acrimony. Procycling also remembers another of the Tour's great climbers by retracing the route of Robert Millar's classy 1984 Tour ride to Guzet Neige in the Classic Climbs feature. Plus, Frankie Andreu tests Independent Fabrication's custom-built XS.

    Also featured are interviews with Yaroslav Popovych and John-Lee Augustyn, plus the regular columns Gianni "The Prince" Savio and Garmin's Dan Martin.

  • O'Neill ready to fly with V Australia

    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany

    The new Australian professional team Fly V Australia presented by Successful Living announced the...

    The new Australian professional team Fly V Australia presented by Successful Living announced the signing of eight-time Australian time trial champion Nathan O'Neill to its roster on Thursday. The 34-year-old from Queensland is returning to racing after serving a 15-month ban for using the appetite suppressant phenteramine.

    O'Neill said he is fit, motivated and "raring to go", and pleased to be riding for a team from his home country after years spent in top teams in Europe and North America. "It's quite surreal to finally be riding for an Australian-registered professional cycling team. I am very appreciative of the team's confidence in my abilities and their decision to take me on. It's long been a dream of mine to race for an Aussie team – I didn't think I would get this opportunity. This is a great day for me personally and for Australian cycling."

    Speaking about his role in the team O'Neill said, "I look forward to contributing to the establishment of a winning team culture as we embark on our first season together. We've put together a team that can contend for podium places in any race we enter. There are a number of young guys on our roster who are looking to step up – I'm looking forward to sharing my experience with them and helping them to make that step."

    O'Neill is particularly excited by the prospect of racing with long time adversary and fellow Australian Time Trial Champion Ben Day. O'Neill said, "I think it's amazing to have two former Australian TT Champions on the same team. Ben will be an invaluable member of the team, both in the time trial and road races. I know he will be a threat for the GC all season long and I hope that together we can help bring some of the other guys along in the time trials, so everyone is a threat when we are racing for GC."

    Fly V Australia p/b Successful Living (Australia unless otherwise noted): Alessandro Bazzana...

  • Dean chases hat-trick in New Zealand

    Julian Dean (Crédit Agricole)
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany

    Kiwi sprinter Julian Dean will seek his third straight national title this weekend at the RaboPlus...

    Kiwi sprinter Julian Dean will seek his third straight national title this weekend at the RaboPlus New Zealand Road Championship in Te Awamutu. Dean, who races for the Garmin-Slipstream squad, is intent on donning the black and white national jersey during the upcoming road season. He's been tailoring his training toward the 180km event rather than focusing on preparations for the six-day Tour Down Under.

    "This race means a lot to me. It's great to be able to wear the New Zealand jersey in the major races in Europe and I think it's also helped give our country and our sport some profile with the coverage we get," Dean said. "It brings some kudos and identity in the peloton in the major tours."

    After the championships, Dean will join his Garmin teammates in Adelaide for the Tour Down Under before heading back to his base in Spain with his family in February to prepare for the main part of the season.

    The championships begin on Friday with the time trial for elite men, under-23 and elite women, with the women's road race over 120kms on Saturday and the men's and under-23 road race over 180kms from 10am on Sunday.

  • Milram: "Everything new – Everything different"

    The 2009 Milram squad
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany

    By Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany Everything is new and different at Team Milram for the 2009...

    By Susan Westemeyer in Dortmund, Germany

    Everything is new and different at Team Milram for the 2009 season: with a revamped roster and redesigned jerseys, the squad aims to get back to winning with its two new captains, Gerald Ciolek and Linus Gerdemann. The sole remaining German ProTour team presented its squad on Wednesday in Dortmund, Germany.

    "I am happy to present a German Team Milram, in which we have riders for every discipline," said General Manager Gerry van Gerwen. "From Spring Classics specialists to sprinters, GC riders and climbers, as well as all-rounders – the team is much more versatile than in the past years."

    Continue to the full feature.

  • Millar prepares for 2009

    David Millar (Team Garmin-Chipotle p/b H30)
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Peter Hymas David Millar has spent quiet, quality time preparing for the 2009 season at...

    By Peter Hymas

    David Millar has spent quiet, quality time preparing for the 2009 season at Garmin-Slipstream's European base in Girona, Spain, benefiting from the team's uniquely timed initial training camp and a more traditional start to his racing campaign.

    "It's been more relaxed this winter, a lot different than last year. We don't have the pressure that we had at the start of year with a lot to prove," said Millar to Cyclingnews. "The fact that we're ProTour and have guaranteed selection to races, we can kind of get back to the sporting aspect of it all.

    "One of the nice things with this team is that we have an early winter get together in November which leaves us an almost two-month uninterrupted period after that to settle down at home and just get into a routine and train well," continued Millar. "I made the most of that and stayed in Girona the whole time. Most other teams have their camps in the middle of December or the beginning of January so it all kind of gets disrupted."

    A factor contributing to Millar's relaxed demeanor is a reversion to his traditional race schedule with an initial mid-March peak rather than 2008's blazing form unleashed much earlier in January's Tour of Qatar and February's Tour of California. "For the moment my first race is the Tour Méditerranéen starting February 11, then Vuelta a la Comunidad Valenciana, Paris-Nice, Milano-Sanremo and then Criterium International. That's the first wave and then I'll take almost the whole of April off racing. I'll start my Tour build-up which will be [Tour de] Romandie, [Volta Ciclista a] Catalunya, [Critérium du] Dauphiné Libéré, my national championships and then the Tour de France. Later on in the year I'll be doing the Tour of...

  • Teams arrive Down Under, Armstrong's touchdown date secret

    Lance Armstrong is keeping his travel plans to himself
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Cycling News

    The first of the ProTour squads have arrived in Australia for the upcoming Tour Down Under, which...

    The first of the ProTour squads have arrived in Australia for the upcoming Tour Down Under, which begins January 20, but the date of the much anticipated arrival of seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong has been kept a secret. Race organisers are hoping to avoid a crush of media and fans at the airport.

    Armstrong's Astana team is due to arrive this Sunday to begin adjusting to the time change and training in the warm temperatures, but Armstrong, who has been preparing in Hawaii, will not come until later in the week, according to The Age.

    Silence Lotto's Mario Aerts was one of the first to arrive along with Glenn D'Hollander, Pieter Jacobs, Oliver Kaisen, Jonas Ljungblad and Tom Stubbe. GC hopeful Matthew Lloyd is currently competing in the Australian open road championships in Ballarat. Aerts said the presence of Armstrong will add some pressure for the racers. "Definitely it's going to be more pressure on everybody because he is here."

    Team Columbia's defending champion André Greipel arrived Thursday with fellow German Bernard Eisel, and the summer weather was a welcome contrast to the subzero temperatures and snow they left behind in Europe. "We came without the team because we want to get used to the conditions and time difference. Bernard and me are the only two training here, but it's perfect for us.," Greipel said to Adelaide Now.

    The Tour Down Under grew last year when it was added to the ProTour calendar, but its prestige was buoyed when Armstrong announced he would make his return to the sport after a three-year hiatus beginning in the Australian event. 'Armstrong fever' has begun to grip the nation, and broadcaster SBS is hoping to garner a worldwide audience of 150 million thanks to agreements with Sky Sports and USA's Versus.

    Versus commentator Phil Liggett arrived in Australia last week to call the Jayco Bay Classic, and will continue in that role for the Tour Down Under....

  • UCI finds peace with 'World Calendar'

    UCI president Pat McQuaid
    Article published:
    January 09, 2009, 0:00 GMT
    By:
    Peter Hymas

    The International Cycling Union (UCI) presented the regulations for its new 'World Calendar' at a...

    The International Cycling Union (UCI) presented the regulations for its new 'World Calendar' at a meeting in Geneva, Switzerland on Thursday. The calendar, which allows the UCI's ProTour events to co-exist with the other major European races, was conceived as a solution to the political battle between the organisers of the three Grand Tours and the UCI over the ProTour series.

    Cycling's governing body also revealed the formula it will use for calculating the 'world ranking' for individuals, teams and nations under the new scheme.

    The new calendar smoothes over years of conflict between the Grand Tour organisers, which also promote some of the sport's most prestigious events like Paris-Roubaix and Milan-Sanremo, and the UCI. The organisers had waged a bitter war with the UCI over ProTour regulations, specifically those requiring all ProTour teams to be invited to their events.

    The situation came to a head last year when Tour de France organiser, Amaury Sport Organisation, decided to hold Paris-Nice and the Tour under the French Cycling Federation rather than under the command of the UCI.

    "The tensions that affected cycling peaked during the 2008 Tour de France and we found ourselves in a rather sad situation for our sport," UCI president Pat McQuaid said in an address. "Fortunately, these difficulties were the catalyst for us all to realise that it was no longer possible to continue in this way.

    McQuaid indicated that, while the calendar had been agreed upon, there is still some work to be done. "There are still points of disagreement, that is clear, but these are of a completely different nature to those that were tearing cycling apart just a few months ago."

    The regulations were drawn up by a 'working group' which included Jean-Francois Pescheux of the Amaury...