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First Edition Cycling News, Saturday, September 15, 2012

Date published:
September 15, 2012, 1:00 BST
  • Contract news: Ubeto to Lampre, Ciolek to MTN-Qhubeka

    Venezuelan Miguel Ubeto displays his country's flag.
    Article published:
    September 14, 2012, 20:05 BST
    Cycling News

    Venezuelan rider up into WorldTour, German sprinter to South-African outfit

    Miguel Ubeto, third-placed of the UCI America Tour and winner of last year's classification, will be racing for Italian team Lampre-ISD next year. According to newspaper El Impulso, the Androni-Giocattoli rider has signed a contract with the World Tour team on Wednesday this week and will therefore leave the Professional Continental ranks next season.

    Ubeto, a national champion in 2011, raced in Europe for the first time this year. The winner of the overall Tour of Venezuela will return to his home country next Saturday for some post-season rest and then come back to Italy in December to meet his new team.

    Meanwhile, Omega Pharma-QuickStep will let go of Gerald Ciolek at the end of this year, as South-African team MTN-Qhubeka has announced the signing of the German sprinter for next season. Ciolek is the latest rider to join the team after Jay Thomson and Ignatas Konovalovas.

    "This is our biggest signing for the team and for our European program," team director Douglas Ryder said. "To have a previous U23 World Champion, German National Champion, stage winner in the Vuelta and a rider that has twice come second in stages in the Tour de France is fantastic for Team MTN-Qhubeka. Our team is all about raising awareness to the cycling talent in Africa and to mobilising people on bicycles through MTN-Qhubeka and Gerald's signing will go a long way in helping raise the awareness to our project and in winning races. We are incredibly excited about the future."

    Ciolek will have a two fold role on the team, to gain results like he did this year by winning a stage in Volta ao Algarve and to help nurture the younger riders.

    "When I heard about this project I thought it was a really good idea. It's a smaller team than what I am used to but I will be well protected and have only heard good things...

  • Hesjedal, Tuft head Team Canada for Worlds

    Article published:
    September 14, 2012, 21:05 BST
    Cycling News

    Numainville leads women's squad

    Team Canada named its full roster of riders who will compete in the UCI Road World Championships in Limburg, The Netherlands next week. The elite men's road race team will be headed by Giro d'Italia champion Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) and Svein Tuft (Orica-GreenEdge).

    The WorldTour pair will be joined by François Parisien (Spidertech-C10) and David Veilleux (Europcar) for the road race, while Tuft will also compete in the individual time trial.

    Team selector Gord Fraser said the team is more competitive than ever due to the depth of Canadians at the top level of the sport. "We have more depth than ever to select our teams for major international events. This is a great sign that cycling in Canada is moving in the right direction, and is growing rapidly in popularity."

    The women's team also demonstrated the country's depth of talent, with only one of its Olympians heading to Limburg, Joëlle Numainville (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies). She will be joined by trade teammates Leah Kirchmann and Lex Albrecht with Véronique Labonté (CSM Epinay sur Seine) and Karol-Ann Canuel (Vienne-Futuroscope) rounding out the team for the road race.

    Rhae-Christie Shaw (Team Exergy Twenty12), who missed out on the Olympic selection, was chosen to compete in the individual time trial alongside Numainville.

    Elite Men
    Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) [Road race]
    François Parisien (Team SpiderTech p/b C10) [Road race]
    Svein Tuft (Orica-GreenEdge) [Road race; Time Trial]
    David Veilleux (Team Europcar) [Road race]

    Elite Women
    Lex Albrecht (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) [Road race]
    Karol-Ann Canuel (Vienne-Futuroscope) [Road race]
    Leah Kirchmann (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)...

  • Team Exergy will return for 2013

    Andres Diaz (Team Exergy) drove the late race break, enabling teammate Fred Rodriguez to sit tight in the field and wait for the sprint.
    Article published:
    September 14, 2012, 22:02 BST
    Cycling News

    Men's and women's UCI Continental squads to continue

    Team Exergy will return to the UCI Continental ranks for their third straight year in 2013, the team announced today. This is the fourth consecutive year Escalera Racing and Exergy Development Group have partnered to field a team in North America (the relationship started in 2010 with an elite amateur squad).

    "It has been a turbulent year in cycling and we greatly appreciate Exergy Development Group's dedication to our sport, our community, and the general welfare of our society. We will proudly carry the message of good will this company holds in its soul," said Remi McManus, Team Exergy Manager.

    "Exergy Development remains committed to support all the positive elements surrounding this sport, both professionally and in youth development," said James Carkulis, CEO Exergy Development Group. "In an era when cycling seems content in continuing to cannibalize itself, we know the young men and women at the heart of this sport deserve our admiration and respect. It is for these reasons we proudly fund our men's and women's teams again in 2013 and beyond."

    Earlier this summer Cyclingnews reported that the Exergy Development Group, one of the biggest sponsors in US domestic cycling, confirmed there had been unmet financial obligations related to several events they've sponsored, such as the eponymous Idaho Exergy Women's Tour as well as the USA Pro Cycling Challenge in Colorado. The men's Team Exergy and women's Exergy-TWENTY12 squads denied any issue with payment, however.

    Carkulis later told the Idaho Statesman that $1 million of expenses had been paid with more to follow. "It is also safe to say we shall pay the remaining balance and we are disappointed our commitments temporarily outran our ability to pay them," Carkulis said.

  • Vos skips time trial to focus on road race world title

    Race winner, Marianne Vos (Rabo Women)
    Article published:
    September 14, 2012, 23:03 BST
    Cycling News

    No substitutions for Dutch squad

    Marianne Vos has opted to give up her place in the time trial at the UCI Road World Championships in order to focus on the road race, the Dutch Cycling Union (KNWU) announced today.

    Vos has come second in the world championships five times in a row since she took her first elite title in 2006, and after winning the gold medal in the 2012 Olympic Games in London, she hopes to reverse that trend.

    After winning the overall World Cup this season, including the World Cups GP de Plouay, Ronde van Drenthe and Trofeo Alfredo Binda, Vos showed her post-Olympics form to be right on track with a dramatic victory in the final stage of the Holland Ladies Tour on a similar uphill finish as the women will face in Limburg.

    Vos is slated to take part in the team time trial with the Rabobank women's team on September 16, but will then sit out the time trial two days later. She will then compete in the road race on September 22.

    Ellen van Dijk and Anna van der Breggen will represent The Netherlands in the time trial.


  • No Contador in Saxo Bank's team time trial squad

    Team Saxo Bank warming up
    Article published:
    September 14, 2012, 23:35 BST
    Cycling News

    Mørkøv, Boaro and Roberts to drive Danish team

    Vuelta a España winner Alberto Contador is one of the strongest men on the Saxo Bank-Tinkoff team against the clock, but will not take part in the team time trial at the UCI Road World Championships on Sunday.

    The team today named its six-man squad for the event, with the Spaniard notable for his absence.

    Michael Mørkøv, Manuele Boaro, David Tanner, Luke Roberts, Nicki Sørensen and Matteo Tosatto will tackle the 53.2km "hilly and technically demanding" course in Limburg, The Netherlands, according to the team.

    “We have three specialists in this discipline, Mørkøv, Boaro and Luke and we have two experienced guys in Matteo and Nicki who have both just done the Vuelta," said team director Bradley McGee. "And finally, we have David Tanner who's in great shape and will be doing the road race as well for Australia.

    "The course in Limburg is simply gruesome in terms of steep climbs including the Cauberg climb and the wind just might become a factor as well. But our guys' advantage is that they know each other really well, they're all skillful bike riders technically and they're all very motivated to represent the team at the world championships."

  • Vogels reveals Pegasus Racing dispute

    Henk Vogels makes a live call in to Australian TV coverage of the Amgen Tour of California.
    Article published:
    September 15, 2012, 1:23 BST
    Jane Aubrey

    V Australia sports director still chasing wages and entitlements

    Henk Vogels played a huge role in the success of the V Australia juggernaut. Under his watch the Australian continental team claimed 245 race wins. But the team's ambitions to join the top tier of cycling came crashing down last year, taking the riders' and staff's careers with them.

    Vogels has resisted going public with his tale of how the team's collapse nearly ruined him on the basis that he wanted desperately to call time on this tumultuous period of his life, but now is ready for his story to be heard. It should be noted that Cyclingnews has contacted Pegasus Racing boss Chris White on numerous occasions over the past few weeks but he has not returned our calls or messages.

    Still owed tens of thousands of dollars, Vogels' likely last chance to recoup any funds from the team as part of the UCI bank guarantee vanished earlier this month when he was removed as a creditor to the claim.

    On the eighth of this month, Cycling Australia released the bank guarantee from the 2011 season back to Pegasus Racing. Cycling Australia relaxed the standard March 31 deadline to release the funds on the basis that there was an on-going dispute between White and a creditor – Vogels. When Cyclingnews broke the story of Cycling Australia withholding the funds, Vogels had not wished to be named.

    "I was in serious financial difficulty for a long, long time," he told Cyclingnews. "It was only through the help of Jonathon Noonan who gave me a job with BikeSportz directly without an application and Heiko Salzwedel my old coach [now general manager of RusVelo who has employed Vogels as a sports director], I don't think I would have got through it all.

    "Chris White left me for dead."

    Vogels' dispute with...

  • Thomas withdraws from world championship road race, TT contention

    Geraint Thomas (Sky) was second to Westra
    Article published:
    September 15, 2012, 3:57 BST
    Cycling News

    Welshman concentrates on team time trial with Sky

    Geraint Thomas may have been selected as part of Sky's team time trial outfit although he was missing from the Great Britain road team despite being named on the long list.

    According to the Welshman, who won gold as part of the team pursuit line up at the London Olympic Games, "I am not in the right shape to do myself justice," he told the BBC.

    The Great Britain team will consist of Mark Cavendish, Steve Cummings, Alex Dowsett, Chris Froome, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard, Ben Swift, Jon Tiernan-Locke and Bradley Wiggins. Dowsett and Froome will compete in both the individual time trial and the road race.

    Thomas explained that his current condition left him with doubts over whether he would be able to finish the 260km road race.

    "Maybe if I had knuckled down straight after the Games and done four, five, six-hour rides, had been watching my diet and sleeping well, then I would have been in a lot better shape and could have ridden," Thomas said.

    "But there was no chance I was going to do that. There was so much pressure and hype in the build-up to the Olympics and now it is over it has been a massive release - I have been enjoying it and making the most of it."

    Earlier this month, Thomas rode the GP de Montreal - won by Sky teammate Lars Petter Nordhaug - but the 26-year-old did not finish the race.


  • Neylan caps fruitful week with Australian selection for worlds

    Rachel Neylan in national team kit in 2010
    Article published:
    September 15, 2012, 5:28 BST
    Jane Aubrey

    Persistence pays after season at the crossroads

    Rachel Neylan believes that Australia has every chance to be in the mix for the women's road race at this year's UCI World Championships in Limburg, with the team focussed on supporting Tiffany Cromwell next Saturday.

    Neylan and Cromwell were selected alongside Shara Gillow, national champion Amanda Spratt, Oceania champion Gracie Elvin, Jessie Maclean, and Loren Rowney. It's a team that signals a definite shift from Australian selectors, with an emphasis on potential and development of talent.

    "That's the way that we have to move forward with women's cycling in Australia," Neylan told Cyclingnews from Varese where the team is enduring a final training camp before making the move to Holland on Tuesday. "We have a lot more depth this year and it was a very, very hard selection decision. But I think they're [the selectors] doing the right thing by giving girls experience early so when they are at that top-field, competitive level, they're able to draw on that experience that they've had in previous years.

    "You've got to look forward to that next Olympic cycle."

    Neylan had two goals this season and remarkably the 30-year-old has managed succeeded both in the last week. The first was to secure a UCI podium and Neylan did so with third place on the fifth stage of Tour de l'Ardèche. She went on to finish fourth overall. Her second goal was a spot on the Australian team for the world championships – her debut.

    "The last week's been pretty fruitful," Neylan explained. "I'm pretty happy."

    Neylan's success in reaching this point is remarkable to say the least following what she politely calls some "unfortunate...