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First Edition Cycling News, Monday, September 19, 2011

Date published:
September 19, 2011, 1:00 BST
  • Mørkøv now facing both time trial and road race at Worlds

    Men's Madison - Michael Morkov flies the Danish flag after he wins the championship
    Article published:
    September 18, 2011, 17:44 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Dane to ride time trial in Rasmussen's absence

    Michael Mørkøv will now ride both the time trial and the road race for Denmark in this week's world championships in Copenhagen. He was named for the time trial only when Alex Rasmussen was removed from the team for doping control notification problems.

    “Since I won bronze at the Danish Championships last year, I have dreamed about riding this time trial, also because I thought it was realistic,”  Mørkøv told feltet.dk. “But I must honestly say that both Alex and Jakob [Fuglsang] have done better with it at the highest international level, so I had actually written it off and did not work specifically for it.

    “But when the opportunity presented itself, I'm obviously very pleased to be selected and I will try to do as well as possible on Wednesday.”

    Mørkøv is riding the GP Isbergues in France today, and will not have a chance to pre-ride the course in downtown Copenhagen. He hopes to ride in the team car behind one of the U-23 riders on Monday, so that he can see the course.

    Rasmussen is the second rider to drop out of the Danish team, behind Matti Breschel, who has two broken fingers. The team now has reduced chances at  a medal, but will still try.

    "Our role in the race is still the same as after Matti made his apologies. We must start with the six strongest riders we have and try to get one or two in a break and then see how the race develops. While with Matti we could say that we are riding for the win, it's now more of an intention to make a good figure and show ourselves and then try to sneak a rider in the top ten at the end. "

    Not surprised at Rasmussen's lapses...

  • Robert Gesink suffers leg break

    Robert Gesink (Rabobank) had a disappointing Tour de France.
    Article published:
    September 18, 2011, 19:19 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Rabobank leader in hospital after training crash

    Robert Gesink (Rabobank) has been taken to hospital in Doetinchem, Holland, after a training ride crash. An early diagnosis indicates that the Dutchman has suffered a fracture to his right leg.

    Gesink recently finished 2nd in the GP Quebec.

    Earlier in the season he sealed the overall victory at the Tour of Oman and a second place overall at the Tirreno-Adriatico. He was due to end his season at the UCI World Championships, Giro dell'Emilia, a race he won last year, and the Giro di Lombardia.

    Stay tuned to Cyclingnews for more.
     

  • Dekker scores first win since comeback

    Thomas Dekker in action.
    Article published:
    September 18, 2011, 21:27 BST
    By:
    Daniel Benson

    Teams up with Garmin's Van Summeren to take Duo Normand

    Thomas Dekker scored his first win since his comeback from a drug ban, winning the Duo Normand two-man team time trial with Garmin-Cervelo's Johan Van Summeren. It was Dekker’s first win since 2008 and the clearest indication yet that he is beginning to find his feet in the pro ranks after serving a two-year ban for taking EPO. Still without a team for next year, he is still hoping that Garmin will opt to sign him.

    Dekker came back to racing in August at the Tour of Portugal where he raced for Garmin’s under-23 feeder team, the Chipotle Development Team. He was forced out of the event with an injury but has since recorded two top-ten placings and today's win.

    "I came back in international cycling at the Tour of Portugal, but had to pull out with a thigh-bone injury. I wanted to do everything good before that race, like a junior. I changed shoes, pedals, and that of course was not a good idea. After that things were not easy. The Vuelta of Mexico was cancelled and the team had no races anymore for me,” he told Cyclingnews.

    Despite that setback, Garmin, and team boss Jonathan Vaughters, who has followed Dekker's career since well before his rehabilitation, wanted Dekker to demonstrate that he could race under clear circumstances since his ban, and more importantly, produce results. The American team boss has subjected Dekker to a number of physical tests and instructed him to work with WADA in the fight against doping.

    “But in the meantime Jonathan and the rest of the Garmin team made clear to me that I had to show something special. They wanted to see me fight. Like, 'ok Thomas this is the situation, show you have guts and that you go for it..' It was a clear message. So I had to make a alternative program with pro races in Belgium and...

  • Felt ready to partner with Skil-Shimano in 2012

    Head down: The Skil-Shimano sprinter comes out on top
    Article published:
    September 18, 2011, 22:53 BST
    By:
    Daniel Benson

    Frame company back with top-level team

    Skil-Shimano will ride on Felt frames in 2012 after a reaching a three-year deal with the American bicycle firm. Felt had previously supplied frames to Garmin but their partnership with Skil sees them returning to the professional road ranks after a year away.

    “We’d had our feelers out for the last year or so on opportunities and we talked to a bunch of teams but for us it was important that we ended up with a programme that we felt would give us the mechanisms we needed and in turn we’d provide them with the things they needed. Skil just had all the elements and it really added up for us,” Felt’s director of marketing, Doug Martin, told Cyclingnews.

    “We were with Garmin for four years and that ran its course but when that ended we actually had other opportunities that year but there wasn’t that programme out there that really fit. So we were willing to be patient and we sat out last year. The Skil team has all the right elements.”

    The team will start out on Felt’s F1 series and although the team will only make their debut on Felt frames in January, the hard work has already begun. A new set of frames need to be fitted and perfected over the coming months with riders having their first team camp in early December.

    According to Martin, Felt provided a natural fit in terms of shared vision, while a need for a US-based team was never a top priority.

    “When we went looking for fit I think it wasn’t about nationality and more about vision and culture. Where was the team that had the same vision as us? For us it didn’t matter if it was Dutch, German, American or Canadian. It was about who wanted to go where we wanted to go. They’re balanced with a multi-national team.

    “They’re a bit like the Garmin team we started out with. They have the vision, they have the...

  • Amy's Gran Fondo a resounding success

    Riders were able to ride the picturesque Great Ocean road, under safe conditions and perfect weather.
    Article published:
    September 19, 2011, 1:14 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Great Ocean road provides amazing backdrop for competitive and casual riders

    The Amy Gillett Foundation hosted its inaugural Gran Fondo on Sunday, with some 3000 participants taking part in the 120 kilometre ride from Lorne, Victoria. The event, which is the first of its kind in Australia is part of trend of Grand Fondo's popping up all over the world.

    The route followed the picturesque Great Ocean road and included a field from weekend warriors, to some of the strongest elite cyclists in Australia. The Gran Fondo adds to already existing event Amy's Ride, and both are part of a campaign by the foundation to raise awareness for road safety, with the long-term aim to decrease the number of cyclists who lose their lives on the road every year.

    David Lee from the Amy Gillett foundation explained to Cyclingnews that the success of the Grand Fondo is a big step in the progress and growth of the foundation.

    "We know our message is now reaching more than 3 million Australians, and that in itself is leading to a groundswell of support," said Lee. "We're now speaking to ministers at a state and federal level, and we're at that point now where, we're pushing for legislative review."

    "The ride on Sunday gives riders a chance to ride like the professionals do on a fully enclosed course, without traffic, and it's certainly an important part of furthering our safety message in Australia."

    Lee added that the events status as a UCIWCT qualifier meant that there was also a healthy level of competition at the event.

    "The top 25 per cent of the each age category qualifies for the UCIWCT world championships in Belgium, next September, which allows riders who are the top of the amateur level to get some exposure and potentially push up to a professional level. So there's also that element, which adds to our grassroots and community rides.

    The fastest rider in the men's category was Peter Dennis who completed the hilly course in a time just under 3 hours. Of the women the fastest was Rachel...

  • Hosking quietly confident going into worlds

    Chloe Hosking (HTC-HighRoad) won the young rider competition by one second from Chantal Blaak (AA Drink)
    Article published:
    September 19, 2011, 6:49 BST
    By:
    Alex Hinds

    Australian sprinter 'feeling really strong' for Saturday's road race

    Chloe Hosking (HTC-Highroad) will aim to end the drought for the Australian women's team at the UCI road world championships in Copenhagen when she lines up for the road race on Saturday. Hosking, 20, has taken four wins so far in 2011, as well as an impressive 4th overall at the recent Holland Ladies Tour where she was competing against many of her world championships rivals.

    Speaking to Cyclingnews from the Australian national team headquarters in Varese, Hosking said she was confident in her preparation and now looking forward to the 140km road race.

    “I felt really strong [in Holland], so I’m confident with my form going into the race," Hosking said.

    "I think the Australian selectors have really thought about the course, and thought about the girls that have been riding well. If we have a clear plan and really stick to it, I think we can do a good race. We haven’t had such great worlds the past few years so I think everyone’s really hungry to change that this year."

    Australia's last medal in the elite women's category came back in 2005 when Oenone Wood rode to a bronze medal in Madrid. Despite coming close a number of times since, the team has lacked a proven fast finisher. With Hosking the team does have someone they can rely on if it does come down to a bunch dash, though the Australian tempered suggestions there would be a large group at the finish.

    "World championships are so unpredictable that you never really know what’s going to happen; they’re just a whole different ball game," said Hosking. "I wouldn’t be surprised to see a select group of favourites, like Vos, Teutenberg, Emma Johansson and hopefully myself approach the finish together.

    "But I'll get a better sense of the course when I get to Copenhagen."

    The UCI Road World Championships start on September 19, with the women's race on Saturday September 24.

  • Successful surgery for Gesink

    Local hero Robert Gesink (Rabobank)
    Article published:
    September 19, 2011, 10:49 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Kruijswijk takes his place, Barry in for Rollin

    Robert Gesink has undergone successful surgery on his fractured right femur. The Rabobank rider suffered the serious injury in a training crash on Sunday.

    The Rabobank rider had a pin installed in his leg on Sunday night at the Meander Medical Center in Amersfoort in the Netherlands. He will remain in hospital a few days, and must have ten days of absolute rest, before starting rehabilitation.

    Rabobank sport director Erik Breukink said that Gesink did not remember how the crash happened.

    The crash is another blow for the 26-year old after a difficult 12 months. His father died in October 2010 as the result of a cycling accident. Gesink started well in the season, winning two stages in the Tour of Oman en route to overall victory. A crash at the Tour de France left him with back and hip injuries and he finished the race 33rd overall. He recently he finished second in the GP de Quebec, and was looking forward to repeating his two-time win in the Giro dell'Emilia. Now his season is over and he faces a winter of rehabilitation and physiotherapy.

    Gesink's place on the Worlds road team will be taken by Rabobank teammate Steve Kruijswijk.

    In another team change, Dominique Rollin (FDJ) has withdrawn from the Canadian team. He has not recovered from injuries suffered in a crash at the GP de Montreal. His place on the road race will be taken by Michael Barry of Team Sky.

  • Pozzato joins Farnese Vini, Paulinho moves to Saxo Bank

    Filippo Pozzato (Katusha)
    Article published:
    September 19, 2011, 12:21 BST
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer

    Italian looking to restart his career with the Professional Continental team

    The transfer carousel continues to turn, even as the world championships begin in Copenhsagen, with Filippo Pozzato confirming his move to Farnese Vini for 2012, while Portugal's Sergio Paulinho confirmed he is leaving RadioShack for Saxo Bank-SunGard.

    Pozzato, 30, has been with Katusha for the last three years but has had limited riding time with the Russian team this year. Team manager Andre Tchmil criticised him publicly during the Spring Classics, and the Italian was not selected for any of the grand tours. His best result of of the was third overall in the Tour de Picardie anda crash at the Tour of Belgium left him with a fractured collarbone and fractured ribs.

    He confirmed he was joining Farnese Vini after a night of refection on Saturday. His bad luck continued on Sunday, with him crashing out of the GP di Prato in Tuscany.

    Pozzato said that he was determined to get his career back on track and was looking forward to working with sport director Luca Scinto. Farnese Vini is a Professional Continental team but hopes to secure invitations to the Spring Classics thanks to Pozzato's presence in the team.

    "I think Farnese Vini will be the right team for me to restart my career," Pozzato said.

    "I've always apprecaited the work of Scinto and I know that ability to build and motivate a good team of riders that can help a team leader. I'm ready to trust him and work with him.  I know some people think it's a step down for me but I'm happy to go against general opinion. t's the best solution for me to rediscover my peace of mind and so get the results I want to."

    Farnese Vini team manager Angelo Citracca said: “We know that our group of young riders is special, but without Visconti (who will leave the team for Movistar in 2012) we needed a new captain. Pozzato...