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First Edition Cycling News, Saturday, May 11, 2013

Date published:
May 11, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Giro d'Italia: Hansen takes spectacular lone win in rain

    Adam Hansen (Lotto Belisol) on the attack
    Article published:
    May 10, 2013, 23:20 BST
    By:
    Alasdair Fotheringham

    147-kilometre break rewarded with first victory in three years

    At 31, Lotto-Belisol’s Adam Hansen may have had to wait a little longer than he would have liked for his first Grand Tour stage win, but there is no denying that when that opportunity came, he took it with considerable style.

    A 147-kilometre breakaway through a rainstorm and on some of the most technically challenging climbs of central Italy is impressive enough, but on top of that the former Australian time trial national champion and computer engineer showed he had more than the measure of his most tenacious rival, Emanuele Sella (Androni) when he dropped the Italian 20 kilometres from the finish on the race’s second last classified climb and soloed away for victory.

    “I knew Sella was the strongest rider in the break and I don’t think he expected us to challenge him on the climbs,” Hansen told reporters in a press conference afterwards. “I knew it was a surprise for him. I tried to break him mentally."

    “I never believed I could end up sitting here, though, I get in breaks and it always comes back. But then when we were seven minutes ahead, we thought there was a chance and when I heard there was still a gap of two and a half minutes in the bag with six kilometres to go, I knew I had it.”

    “This is the biggest win of my life, a very special day. And tomorrow’s my birthday, so it all means a lot to me.”

    Hansen had done his forward planning for the stage though and his first win since a stage and overall in the Ster ZLM Tour in Holland back in 2010. “I thought it was the best day to do the break,” he said, “the trickiest thing is always getting into the break in the first place. Once you’re there, it’s almost like you’re in a lottery, you've got a chance.” He even shaved his head before the...

  • Gallery: Tour of California press conference

    Peter Sagan (Cannondale) talks about his good times in California last year.
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 0:53 BST
    By:
    Laura Weislo

    Contenders gather in Escondido

    The eighth year of the Amgen Tour of California brings "one of the most, if not the most challenging courses to date", according to race organizer Kristin Bachochin of AEG, who opened the proceedings at the pre-race press conference in Escondido today. For the first time the race will start in Southern California and head north, and with that switch the race incorporates new areas, one of which is the desert town of Palm Springs, where the overall contenders will get their first major test.

    BMC's Tejay van Garderen, one of the main favorites for the general classification, admitted that he hadn't previewed the uphill finish in Palm Springs, where the finish is a 3.7-mile ascent that averages almost 10%.

    "The one stage I didn't recon is stage 2, and from what I'm hearing it's going to catch a lot of people by surprise," he said. The other two decisive days will be the Mt. Diablo mountain top finish and the time trial in San Jose.

    "I got a chance to check out the time trial course and Diablo, and the time trial is going to be interesting. It's a normal time trial for the first 27km and then a 3km wall. It's going to be a battle of equipment, gearing, deciding whether to take a bike change or sacrifice weight for aerodynamics, or vice versa. It's going to be a lab experiment, a science test."

    According to van Garderen, the very nature of cycling means that it is impossible to predict who will challenge for the win, but he expects Michael Rogers (Saxo-Tinkoff), the 2010 Tour of California winner, David Zabriskie (Garmin-Sharp) who has been second overall, and Francisco Mancebo to be on his list of riders to watch. "It's kind of an unknown. A lot of the usual suspects aren't here, they are either at the Giro or taking a rest period. It's still going to be exciting racing."

    Reigning US road...

  • Gerry Ryan bankrolls Orica GreenEdge through to 2016

    Orica-GreenEdge founder Gerry Ryan gets a round of applause
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 2:21 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Team set to review Vance Report

    Orica GreenEdge will continue to receive the financial backing of Gerry Ryan until 2016 with the Australian businessman confirming the news at the Giro d’Italia on Thursday.

    Ryan told the Sydney Morning Herald that team management was currently looking at the future make-up of the squad and with that in mind, confirmed his continued support ahead of the team being required to re-apply for it's UCI WorldTour licence moving into next season.

    "Well, we are in the midst of signing riders for two and three-year contracts. So what does that say?" Ryan said. "Commitment. My commitment."

    Late last year, Ryan and his company Jayco Caravans also confirmed that he would continue to bankroll the Cycling Australia high performance program through to the Rio de Janiero Olympic Games across road, track and Para-cycling in a "multi-million dollar" deal.

    With the Vance Report due to be handed down, Orica GreenEdge management is set to review its findings this month with ramifications for the way the team moves forward in current staff and recruitment. Earlier this month former sports director Matt White completed his six-month backdated ban for doping violations with the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority clearing him to return to work. Whether that will be with Orica GreenEdge remains to be seen.

    "We will meet with Nicki and go extensively through the report, and look at her recommendations," explained Ryan with general manager Shayne Bannan set to return to Australia to go over the...

  • Boonen 65th in Picardie comeback

    Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma QuickStep) crashes out of the Tour of Flanders
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 3:59 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Belgian hoping to see results later in the season

    Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma - Quick-Step) returned to racing on Friday at the Tour of Picardie. It was the Belgian's first race since crashing at the Tour of Flanders at the end of March.

    Boonen finished in 65th place, 27 seconds off the pace of stage winner Marcel Kittel (Argos - Shimano), having decided to race the French event over the Tour of California given his lack of race miles. Teammate Andy Fenn was sixth.

    "Remember that after my crash in the Ronde that there was nothing I could do for four weeks and only then have I been easing into it," he told HLN.be. "More than anything I am trying to get to the end of the season in the best shape possible. Maybe there will be some nice results for me in September or October."

    Boonen escaped his crash at the Tour of Flanders with a rib fracture but also suffered various injuries when he hit a road sign 19km into the race. He fell on his left side, injuring his left knee, elbow and hip while also sustaining a contusion and a wound on his right knee that required stitches.

    The three-day Tour of Picardie continues on Saturday with a 171 km stage to Bailleul-sur-Thérain.

     

  • Edmondson nabs fairytale first pro win in China

    Annette Edmondson (Orica-AIS) celebrates with some champagne on the podium
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 4:55 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Orica - AIS claim back-to-back victories at Tour of Chongming Island

    Annette Edmondson (Orica - AIS) claimed her first professional victory on Friday winning both the stage and as a consequence, the overall title at the Tour of Chongming Island in China.

    It had been a rough and tumble few days on the bike for Edmondson, who crashed on Wednesday's opening stage but went into the third and final day six seconds behind compatriot Chloe Hosking (Hitek Products UCK) knowing that not only did she have to win the stage, but also not have Hosking or multiple world champion Giorgia Bronzini (Wiggle Honda) figure in the sprint to the finish line.

    "This is pretty crazy," said 21-year-old Edmondson, in her first season with the team. "It's the first time I've won a yellow jersey in this kind of tour. It's really special, but more amazing is how much my team backed me. I'm not the strongest sprinter here, but we have a strong team, and I was fastest because of them. They were brilliant all week."

    Hosking turned the screws early on the stage, winning two intermediate sprints to increase her lead, meaning that the pressure was on the Orica - AIS team to deliver back-to-back victories in the wake of Melissa Hoskins overall victory in 2012.

    "This is the first real opportunity I've had to work with a sprint train," said Edmondson. "I've had a couple chances in the last couple years with one or two riders, but never a full team. The main thing I've learned is to trust and believe in my team - and to be patient!

    "I have a tendency to get nervous," she continued. "I made a couple of mistakes this week, but after each sprint, I had the experienced riders tell me what I need to do differently. I'm learning that making mistakes is okay as long as you learn from them. My main goal this week, well this whole year, is to learn from the riders around me who have been here before and have the experience. I need...

  • Fuentes to reveal doping secrets for a price

    Eufemiano Fuentes was at the center of Operacion Puerto
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 6:32 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Lawyers waiting for appeals to be lodged

    Eufemiano Fuentes, who last month was convicted of damaging public health and banned from working as a doctor for four years, is offering to sell his story to media outlets according to a report in The Guardian.

    Fuentes' lawyers have reportedly sent an email listing subjects the disgraced doctor is willing to discuss, including naming his clients across a number of sports including cycling in paid interviews. Another topic on the list includes how a number of his clients were able to beat the drug testers at the Tour de France.

    Fuentes also appears to be able to reveal in further detail how transfusions were carried out in hotel rooms at major races, with Tyler Hamilton, Ivan Basso, Jan Ullrich, Roberto Heras and Jörg Jaksche among those named in the email as clients. Heras has previously denied this while Hamilton gave evidence against Fuentes at the trial.

    "He has received approaches from several media organisations, offering money," said his lawyer Joseé Miguel Lledó. "This is a list of subjects he can talk about, but he won't do that until appeals have been lodged later in May."

    News of the Operación Puerto investigation first broke in May 2006, with the arrests of Fuentes and Liberty Seguros team manager Manolo Saiz, while a number of Fuentes clients, including Ullrich and Basso, were prevented from starting that year's Tour de France.

    Other riders who later faced sporting sanctions for their links to Fuentes include Alejandro Valverde and Michele Scarponi, although many of his clients have not been formally identified and criminal proceedings have moved slowly. Operación Puerto finally went to trial in January of this year and the hearing took place in 23 sessions, from...

  • Maglia rosa on the line in Saturday's time trial

    Bradley Wiggins (Sky) on a treacherous downhill
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 8:50 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Bobridge first rider out of the start house

    It will be a high stakes game for the general classification hopefuls at the Giro d'Italia with Saturday's 54.8km individual time trial set to provide the first real selection for the overall.

    The fortunes of pre-race favourite Bradley Wiggins (Sky) are likely to be focus of the afternoon, having lost 1:24 to his principal rivals for final overall victory and dropped to 23rd overall, 1:32 off the maglia rosa of Benat Intxausti (Movistar) due to a crash late on Stage 6. The long and technical race against the clock was likely one for the Brit but any after-effects of the crash won't be known until late on Saturday with switchbacks, climbs and cobbles littering the parcours.

    "You can have good days and bad days and you have to wait until the end to tot them all up and see where you are," said Sky's team principal Sir David Brailsford following the conclusion of Friday's stage. "It's a setback, but Brad's still very much in the hunt. We've now got to take each day as it comes, focus on fully recovering tonight and hitting the time trial hard tomorrow. We'll see where we are tomorrow night and take stock of the situation then."

    Intxausti's stint in the pink is expected to be brief with Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) the best-placed of the overall contenders, five seconds back, three ahead of Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp), 11 ahead of Cadel Evans (BMC), 14 ahead of Robert Gesink (Blanco), 52 ahead of Michele Scarponi (Lampre-Merida) and 1:27 up on Wiggins.

    ...
  • Video: Alex Dowsett on his time trial preparation

    British time trial champion Alex Dowsett (Movistar)
    Article published:
    May 11, 2013, 10:26 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    A study in the art of time trialling

    Riding his first Grand Tour, Alex Dowsett (Movistar) heads into Saturday’s 54.8 kilometer individual time trial at the Giro d'Italia with high hopes. Racing in the British time trial champion's jersey, Dowsett will tackle the race from Gabicce Mare to Saltara head on.

    His Grand Tour debut has been a success so far. Having helped guide his Movistar team to second on the team time trial in Naples, Dowsett pulled on the best young rider's white jersey while Salvatore Puccio donned the maglia rosa.

    As well as helping Movistar's Jose Ventoso navigate through the sprint stages Dowsett has also saved energy for Saturday’s major test, in which his teammate Beñat Intxausti will start last in the race lead.

    Dowsett has looked at today’s undulating course and in this exclusive video for Cyclingnews Dowsett talks about his preparation – running through the night before must dos to the final duties ahead of this start time (12:48 C.E.T).