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First Edition Cycling News, Thursday, January 28, 2010

Date published:
January 28, 2010, 0:00 GMT
  • French races may head overseas for anti-doping tests

    Marc Madiot
    Article published:
    January 27, 2010, 14:46 GMT
    Richard Tyler

    LNC President and FDJ director Madiot says rising costs putting pressure on race organisers

    President of the French National Cycling League (LNC) and Française des Jeux directeur sportif Marc Madiot expressed his concern over funding shortfalls that could see organisers of French races forced to use overseas laboratories for anti-doping tests.

    "We are facing a situation that neither the LNC or the French Cycling Federation (FFC) are desires," said Madiot, according to L'Equipe.

    L'Equipe reported on Tuesday that while testing for French races was last year carried out by the French anti-doping agency's (AFLD) lab in Châtenay-Malabry, in southwest Paris, the breakdown in relations between the AFLD and the International Cycling Union (UCI) has raised the prospect of an increased financial burden for race organisers. Madiot said that while the nation's biggest races could weather an increase in costs; smaller races could be put at risk.

    "My concern today as President of the LPCF is to ensure a reasonable financial cost [of testing] and not to increase the expense for race organizers, who apart from Amaury Sports Organisation (ASO), can not afford to follow - whether with the AFLD or the UCI."

    As an alternative to testing through the AFLD or UCI, race organisers could find a more cost effective solution in countries such Switzerland. Anxious to ensure the quality of testing procedures, the races could instead work with World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) approved laboratories, including the Swiss Laboratory for Doping Analyses (LAD), in Lausanne.

  • Petacchi shows his new Lampre jersey at Tuscan training camp

    Lampre team leaders: Petacchi and Cunego
    Article published:
    January 27, 2010, 18:32 GMT
    Stephen Farrand

    Italian veteran sprinter building new lead out train for 2010

    Veteran sprinter Alessandro Petacchi has been working hard with his new Lampre-Farnese Vini teammates at a training camp in Tuscany, as he readies for his season debut on Saturday at the Challenge Calabria in southern Italy.

    While most of the Lampre riders spent 11 days on the Tuscan coast, Petacchi and the five riders who will make up his leadout train, arrived on January 21 from warm-weather altitude training in the Canary Islands.

    At the camp Petacchi simulated sprints with Danilo Hondo, Mauro Da Dalto, Lorenzo Bernucci, Manuele Mori, Mirco Lorenzetto. Hondo will be Petacchi's leadout man in the sprints as he tries to take on his younger sprint rivals.

    Team leader Damiano Cunego and the other riders continued a much more low-key build-up to the season. The Italian, who will focus more on the classics and stage wins rather than major Tours in 2010, continued to alternate riding a fixed gear bike with his normal road bike. Before the camp, Cunego and several of his new teammates worked on their time trial positions on the new indoor Italian track near Brescia.

    "Thanks to great weather conditions, we were able to work really well," said directeur sportif Maurizio Piovani said.

    "We planned the training so that the riders could do the specific work they were unable to do at home due to the bad weather. We mixed distance rides with threshold work. It was interesting to see the riders simulate the sprints for Petacchi, with Di Dalto, Bernucci, Lorenzetto and then last man Hondo launching Alessandro."

    Petacchi will make his racing debut in the bright pink and blue Lampre colours on Saturday at the Challenge Calabria four-day stage race in southern Italy. He will then ride the GP Costa degli Etruschi in Tuscany on Saturday, February 6, stay in Tuscany for another block of training and then ride the Giro di Sardegna on February 23-27.

    Petacchi's first showdown with Mark Cavendish and the other sprinters will...

  • Kelly Benefit Strategies completes wind tunnel testing

    Scott Zwizanski used his time trialing ability to win two UCI stage races and podium at the US Pro Time Trial Championships.
    Article published:
    January 27, 2010, 18:37 GMT
    Peter Hymas

    Eight team members hone time trial position in North Carolina

    UCI Continental team Kelly Benefit Strategies has concluded two days of testing at the A2 Wind Tunnel in Mooresville, North Carolina. For a team which found much success against the clock in 2009, it's apropos that eight Kelly Benefit riders, team staff, aerodynamic consultants and equipment reps convened in a locale also known as Race City, USA on Monday and Tuesday in the heart of NASCAR country, where the quest for speed and optimal aerodynamics is serious business.

    Performance Director Jonas Carney has ambitious goals in 2010 for the Kelly Benefit Strategies team, with six international races in the Dominican Republic, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Uruguay and France on tap prior to May's Tour of California. Wind tunnel testing for eight of the team's 15 riders is a means to ensure that every possible avenue for elevated performance has been explored for the fourth-year UCI Continental team.

    "I have a good relationship with Mike [Giraud] who runs the tunnel here and I've been in touch with him for a couple of years," Carney told Cyclingnews. "We felt like the best way for us to win more races and take our team to the next level wasn't necessarily to go out and buy a star rider but to invest in the athletes that we have. We have a lot of great time trialists on the team: David Veilleux, Zach Bell, Scott Zwizanski, Reid Mumford and Ryan Anderson."

    The 2009 season was a breakthrough year for Scott Zwizanski who won time trials in the Vuelta Ciclista del Uruguay and Canada's Tour de Beauce, key performances in leading to general classification victory in each race. The 32-year-old Zwizanski also finished on the podium at last year's USA Cycling Pro Time Trial Championship and notched a seventh place finish in the Tour of Missouri time trial stage. Teammate Reid Mumford finished second to Zwizanski at the Vuelta Ciclista del Uruguay time trial and finished fourth in the USA Cycling Pro Time Trial Championship. Canada's David...

  • Whereabouts win for the UCI

    UCI President Pat McQuaid (l) and UCI ProTour Manager Alain Rumpf.
    Article published:
    January 27, 2010, 19:53 GMT
    Stephen Farrand

    Spain's Carlos Roman Golbano loses privacy battle

    The UCI has won a key legal battle in defence of the Whereabouts Information System it uses to carry out surprise out of competition anti-doping tests.

    In a press release issued on Monday, the UCI announced that a provincial court in Almería, Spain, had rejected the appeal by Carlos Roman Golbano, who had challenged the legitimacy of the Whereabouts Information System.

    The decision confirmed a sentence issued in 2007 when a judge ruled that the implementation of the whereabouts programme does not breach individual rights guaranteed by the Spanish Constitution, in particular in respect of the protection of privacy.

    UCI President Pat McQuaid claimed the ruling helped the fight against doping.

    "Cycling has been at the forefront of the fight against doping for many years. We are once again proud that our commitment offers benefits to the sports movement as a whole," he said.

    "We are ever more convinced that our joint efforts against the scourge of doping will become increasingly effective, in particular as a result of rulings such as this, which recognise the basic principles upon which our strategies and actions are based."

    The UCI thanked the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) for playing an important part in the case.

    The Whereabouts Information System is used with the UCI's biological passport programme to facilitate out of competition anti-doping testing of 850 professional riders. 

  • Pena optimistic Rock Racing will continue in 2010

    Victor Hugo Pena (Rock Racing) sitting on the front for the team.
    Article published:
    January 27, 2010, 20:52 GMT
    Kirsten Frattini

    Landis' position unknown after Professional Continental license denied

    Victor Hugo Pena remains optimistic that his Rock Racing cycling team will continue with Continental status after being denied a Professional Continental license by the International Cycling Union (UCI) earlier this year. The Colombian outlined Rock Racing's registration possibilities along with what riders have confirmed commitments to the squad despite its turbulent start to the season.

    "After the UCI told us we were denied, Michael [Ball] told me not to worry," Pena told Cyclingnews. "He said that he was really disappointed but the team was still going on.

    "The main reason we don't have a license yet is because we were always thinking about being Pro Continental and we were very focused on that so we didn't have a plan B," Pena continued. "For us, it was a big surprise that the UCI denied us. We don't know why but I'm sure they have a good justification. The only thing is that now we have to be focused on getting the team a Continental license like last year."

    According to the USA Cycling website, the deadline for submitting a team application for Continental licensing was October 31, 2009 and after that date no other candidates would be accepted for the 2010 season. All completed UCI documents and contracts were to be submitted no later than November 5, 2009.

    Pena noted that Rock Racing owner, Michael Ball is currently pursuing the options of registering his team in Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia and Spain.

    "Michael wants to keep us together as a team and that was more or less the reason he has to move the team's location now that we will not be Pro Continental," Pena said. "He was thinking to move to Venezuela, Colombia, Spain or Mexico. Mexico was good because it is close and it would have been easier to find another sponsor there."

    Furthermore, beginning in January USA Cycling and the USPRO Board of Trustees implemented a 'majority rule' whereby all teams registered as a UCI Continental Team must have...

  • Evans going to Giro d'Italia for results

    Cadel Evans (BMC) happy after a strong 3rd place finish on stage 3.
    Article published:
    January 28, 2010, 5:17 GMT
    Laura Weislo

    World Champion to target maglia rosa

    For the first time in eight years, Australian Cadel Evans will contest the Giro d'Italia, and he's going there to get results. Racing this season with the Professional Continental team BMC Racing Team, Evans is still awaiting word that the team has gained an invitation to any Grand Tour, but is planning his season around both the Giro and the Tour de France.

    Speaking at the team's camp in Agoura Hills, California, Evans said that racing back-to-back Grand Tours has served him well in the past - in 2007 he took second in the Tour de France to Alberto Contador then turned around and just missed the podium at the Vuelta a Espana by a slim 10 seconds.

    Last year, he had his "worst Tour de France ever", but then placed third in the Vuelta and followed that up with a win in the International Cycling Union (UCI) World Road Championships. The Giro-Tour double, Evans said, is not "completely unconventional thinking in an approach to the Tour. It fits in well with the new team and fits in well with what I'd like to do this year".

    Evans has carried his strong late-season form through the winter, and has already come out swinging in the Tour Down Under. His ferocious attack on the Willunga stage not only put the rainbow bands center stage, but also showed a new Cadel Evans: one who seems more relaxed, confident and ready to race more aggressively than ever before. He credits the change more to his new team than his success in Mendrisio, Switzerland last fall.

    "Everything has fallen into place in the off-season, the season started off well, and I hope it's a sign of things to come. A new team, no motivation - it puts me in a good mindset for sure. I'm really looking forward to 2010," he said.

    His preparation for the Giro d'Italia is still contingent on the team being invited to certain races, but he hopes to race Tirreno-Adriatico, Criterium International and the Ardennes Classics La Flèche Wallonne and Liège - Bastogne -...

  • Bbox Bouygues Telecom presented in Paris

    The 2010 Bbox Bouygues Telecom team
    Article published:
    January 28, 2010, 6:01 GMT
    Cycling News

    Pro Continental team confident of Tour start

    Fresh off of general classification and two stage victories in Gabon's La Tropicale Amissa Bongo, the Bbox Bouygues Telecom team was presented in Paris on Wednesday.

    Team manager Jean-René Bernaudeau will look to Frenchmen Pierrick Fédrigo and Thomas Voeckler, both 2009 Tour de France stage winners, to lead the now Professional Continental squad in 2010.

    Newcomers to the team include Freddy Bichot, Anthony Charteau and Nicolas Vogondy. The latter is a two-time French champion who's won regularly during his 14-year pro career. Charteau has returned to the team he left in 2005 and has already earned the team's first victory of 2010, winning one stage and the overall classification at La Tropicale Amissa Bongo.

    At the presentation Bernaudeau said he was "confident" about his team's prospects in 2010, in particular a return to the Tour de France despite the team losing its ProTour status, according to AFP. "I'm not really worried about the future," said Bernaudeau, whose team won 13 races in 2009.

    2010 Bbox Bouygues Telecom team
    Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn)
    Giovanni Bernaudeau (Fra)
    Freddy Bichot (Fra)
    William Bonnet (Fra)
    Franck Bouyer (Fra)
    Steve Chainel (Fra)
    Anthony Charteau (Fra)
    Mathieu Claude (Fra)
    Jérôme Cousin (Fra)
    Pierrick Fédrigo (Fra)
    Damien Gaudin (Fra)
    Cyril Gautier (Fra)
    Yohann Gène (Fra)
    Saïd Haddou (Fra)
    Vincent Jérôme (Fra)
    Laurent Lefèvre (Fra)
    Guillaume Le Floc'h (Fra)
    Alexandre Pichot (Fra)
    Perrig Quemeneur (Fra)
    Pierre Rolland (Fra)
    Matthieu Sprick (Fra)
    Sébastien Turgot (Fra)
    Thomas Voeckler (Fra)
    Nicolas Vogondy (Fra)
    Johann Tschopp (Swi)
    Yuriy Trofimov (Rus)

    Team manager: Jean-René Bernaudeau
    Sport directors: Didier Rous, Dominique Arnould, Benoît Génauzeau,...

  • Hayman's hopes for life at Sky

    With one lap to go Team Sky took to the front.
    Article published:
    January 28, 2010, 8:33 GMT
    Les Clarke

    Domestique duties and Classics chances for valued Australian

    Matthew Hayman is recognised as one of the world's most capable domestiques and hopes to continue in this role at Team Sky in addition to getting a shot at some of the Spring Classics.

    Hayman made the move to Dave Brailsford's squad late last year and lined up in this month's Santos Tour Down Under as one of the key men to drive Team Sky's train in pursuit of wins for sprinters Greg Henderson and Chris Sutton.

    Both men took victories at either end of the Down Under week, and predictably it was Hayman organising and instigating a push to the finish during the final kilometres for himself and the six other men in black and blue.

    It was a great start to the season for the squad and Hayman, who is a perfect fit for the team on paper and on the road. "These guys have taken a whole different view to cycling, they're trying to do things differently. It's refreshing," said Hayman.

    "Not that I had any problems at Rabobank and I could have happily ridden there for a couple more years but it's nice to be somewhere new, meet new people and the commitment we've shown in the leadout is something good.

    "Often at Rabobank I was working with Graeme [Brown] and one or two other guys just trying to get him up there with a smaller group. Here, coming into the finish everybody's committed," he said.

    Both Team Sky directeur sportif Sean Yates and manager Dave Brailsford have said that the squad is a balanced one, and with the addition of general classification rider Bradley Wiggins it will should possess the firepower to perform in a variety of races.

    For the Tour Down Under however, Hayman believes the likes of Ben Swift, Russell Downing and Chris Froome formed a great sprinting crew in a short period. "It's also this group of guys - we might go to other races where there are guys not suited to a bunch sprint but this group seems to be working really well," said the Australian.

    "The communication is there - the guys are...