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First Edition Cycling News, Thursday, March 10, 2011

Date published:
March 10, 2011, 0:00 GMT
  • London 2012 Olympics time trial route announced

    Seb Coe and Michael Day, Chief Executive of Historic Royal Palaces, at Hampton Court Palace, scene of the London 2012 Olympics time trials.
    Article published:
    March 09, 2011, 14:00 GMT
    Cycling News

    Start and finish at Hampton Court Palace

    The time trial route for the 2012 London Olympics has been unveiled, with both the men’s and women’s events set to start and finish at Hampton Court Palace in south west London.

    The men will race over a 44km course, while the women’s time trial is shorter at 29km, but each event will see the riders tackle some undulating terrain in Surrey before returning to the finish near the Thames. The time trials will take place on Wednesday 1 August 2012, four days after the men’s road race sees the award of one the first gold medals of the Games.

    Women’s world time trial champion Emma Pooley was a silver medallist in the discipline in Beijing, and she will be aiming to go one better in London on what believes is an attractive route.

    “It is interesting to now know the trial course for London and I’m looking forward to training especially for it,” Pooley said. “Hampton Court Palace is a beautiful part of London and it will be a great event for spectators.”

    After departing from Hampton Court Palace, both men’s and women’s events see the riders cross south over Hampton Court Bridge.

    The men will take on a loop around Knight Reservoir, before heading along Hampton Court Way towards Burwood Road. After tackling a hilly section in Surrey, the route returns towards London via Cobham and Kingston. The riders must then negotiate a final loop through Bushy Park before the spectacular finish at Hampton Court Palace.

    The women’s course misses out on the Knight Reservoir and Bushy Park sections but the riders will face the same route through the Surrey hills as the men.

    UCI president Pat McQuaid praised the route as being “both physically...

  • Tech news: Felt DA wins UCI race-legal status

    Felt's DA time trial frameset has been approved by the UCI as race legal.
    Article published:
    March 09, 2011, 17:44 GMT

    Company works within guidelines for 2011 model

    Felt's DA time trial frameset has been approved by the UCI as race legal

    The 2011 Felt DA time trial frameset has been deemed race legal by the International Cycling Union and will be one of the first bikes to carry the new 'UCI approved' sticker, announced earlier this year.

    The sticker system is designed to give race officials an easy way to check that frames and forks comply with the UCI's latest technical regulations, as set out in the governing body's new approval protocol.

    This applies to all road, track and cyclo-cross bikes due to go into production after January 1 this year. Older models are exempt, although they have to comply with previous rules.

    Felt says the official seal of approval, which is accompanied by a unique identification code, will be worked into the graphics package of production frames. The company's director of engineering, Jeff Soucek, said the 2011 DA's official certification "once again demonstrates Felt Bicycles' continued dedication to building the world's fastest UCI legal bikes".

  • De Gendt targets top ten overall at Paris-Nice

    Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team) leads the break
    Article published:
    March 09, 2011, 18:31 GMT
    Jean-François Quénet

    Belgian back in yellow after Matt Goss’ interlude

    Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil-DCM) was the most impressive rider of the five-man winning breakaway on stage 4 of Paris-Nice. With his compatriot Francis de Greef (Omega Pharma-Lotto), he accompanied the French trio of eventual stage winner Thomas Voeckler (Europcar), the new king of the mountains Rémi Pauriol (FDJ) and the revived Rémy Di Gregorio (Astana).

    “De Gendt was stronger than me,” Voeckler acknowledged afterwards, and he was full of praise for the Belgian, who took the yellow back after Matt Goss’ interlude. “He rode hard because of the advantage he had on GC. I’m not easily impressed but today, De Gendt really impressed me.

    “It’s not the first time though. Last year when I came sixth in the Flèche Brabançonne, he was at the front. Philippe Gilbert and I chased him down but we never caught him. So when he won stage 1 of Paris-Nice on Sunday, I wasn’t surprised. I knew who he was.”

    De Gendt was happy to hear Voeckler’s appraisal. “But if I hadn’t had the yellow jersey in sight today, probably we would have ridden differently and the breakaway would not have been successful”, said the Vacansoleil rider, who prevented the bunch from catching them by driving at the front of the break in the final ten kilometres.

    “I hope I’ll recover from that by tomorrow,” he said. “Stage 5 is very serious one. When the climbs have a gradient of 6 or 7%, that’s no problem for me, but we’ll face 10%, so I...

  • Voeckler collects his first Paris-Nice stage win

    All smiles for stage winner Thomas Voeckler (Europcar).
    Article published:
    March 09, 2011, 19:05 GMT
    Jean-François Quénet

    French champion frustrated over Liège-Bastogne-Liège snub

    The day after his fruitless attack en route to Nuits-Saint-Georges, Thomas Voeckler (Europcar) was inspired by other famous vineyards in Burgundy to claim the first stage win of his career at Paris-Nice.

    “For a few years now, I’ve initiated decisive breakaways but that doesn’t mean the win was at the end of the road,” the French champion said of the five-man group that he created just 6km after the start of stage 4. “We calculated our efforts pretty well. We discussed and agreed that we would only accelerate after the last climb, unless our advantage went under two minutes before that. It happened, so we rode hard on that climb.”

    Voeckler has started Paris-Nice every year since 2003 and came close to winning in 2009 (second to Jérémy Roy in Vallon-Pont d’Arc the day before crashing and breaking a collarbone) and in 2010 (second to Amaël Moinard in Nice on the final day).

    “I’m so happy it worked out today,” he said. “The stage win was my only goal. I didn’t break away for the polka dot jersey, I won it at Paris-Nice in 2007 and it didn’t change my life. I’m second on GC and I’ll give everything in the time trial but I remain clear, I’m not a time trial machine like Tony Martin or Bradley Wiggins, I don’t compete in the same category as them against the clock. I’ll give my best until the end but this Paris-Nice is already a successful one for me. Now I can definitely say that I’m having my best early season ever.”

    Voeckler played a major role in the rescue of the former Bbox Bouygues Telecom team...

  • Cramps fell Goss on fourth stage of Paris-Nice

    Matt Harley Goss (HTC-Highroad) is in yellow
    Article published:
    March 09, 2011, 23:49 GMT
    Jane Aubrey

    Australian laments "terrible stomach" while in yellow

    It was a tough day in the saddle for HTC-Highroad's Matt Goss who lost his overall lead at the Paris-Nice.

    Goss had rocketed into the yellow leader's jersey on stage three after avoiding several fallen riders and outsprinting Heinrich Haussler (Garmin-Cervelo) and Denis Galimzyanov (Katusha).

    Stage four was a different story however, with Goss forced to the back of the peloton with cramps.

    "Terrible stomach today unfortunately," the 24-year-old said on his Twitter account post-stage. "Cramps and unable to eat for the last 80k. Not good when u have 3000m of climbing to get through."

    Goss finished today's 191km stage back in 117th position, 13 seconds behind winner, French champion Thomas Voeckler (Europcar), pushing the Australian back to fourth overall, 21 seconds down on leader Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil-DCM).

    The effort of Goss to stay in sight of the yellow jersey was not lost on compatriot Richie Porte of Saxo Bank Sungard, who tweeted: "Chapeu @mattgoss1986 for great ride under the circumstances."

    Goss had targeted the opening three stages of the Paris-Nice for a stage win and the possibility of the yellow leader's jersey. With the race now headed for the hills towards Nice, the Australian's focus will shift again.

    "In the mountainous...

  • USA Cycling announces men's Olympic road selection procedures

    Taylor Phinney (United States) took a consistent approach to his pacing
    Article published:
    March 10, 2011, 1:07 GMT
    Cycling News

    Riders need top results from July 2011

    The selection procedures used to determine the London 2012 U.S. Olympic Team in men's road cycling have been released by USA Cycling.

    A five-man team will be named on June 15, 2012 - 43 days out from the men's road race following a qualification period which runs from July 1, 2011 to May 31, 2012.

    Eligible athletes can post results to gain nomination via the following:

    World Championships, Denmark
    - A top three finish and then demonstrated ability to perform on a similar level in major international competition.

    Grand Tours
    - A top three finish in a UCI Grand Tour event with results at the Tour de France given priority over the Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a Espana.

    World Tour ranking
    - A top 10 placing of the Men's UCI World Individual rankings as of June 15, 2012.

    No US athlete featured on this year's first set of rankings, released in January.

    The men's road race will be run over 250km, showcasing some of London's greatest attractions, similar to what was achieved – albeit with high security – for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

    Starting and finishing on The Mall, within the shadows of Buckingham Palace in central London, the race then weaves its way through six boroughs - Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, Hammersmith and Fulham, Wandsworth, Richmond upon Thames, and Kingston upon Thames – before heading into Surrey and through the districts of Elmbridge, Reigate and Banstead, Guildford, Woking and Mole Valley before returning to central London for the finish. The course will...

  • Greipel out of Tirreno-Adriatico

    Andre Greipel (Omega Pharma-Lotto) with his face taped up after crashing during the TTT warmup
    Article published:
    March 10, 2011, 9:06 GMT
    Hedwig Kröner

    Omega Pharma sprinter abandons due to facial injuries

    Omega Pharma's André Greipel had to abandon Tirreno-Adriatico ahead of stage two on Thursday. The German suffered facial injuries due to a crash before stage one, a team time trial. He was able to take the start with his teammates after getting some stitches from his team staff, but this morning, his injuries prevented him from continuing the race.

    "His left eye is completely closed," directeur sportif Dirk de Wolf told reporters on Thursday morning. "In these conditions, it would be irresponsible to continue."

    Greipel's departure from Tirreno comes on a day where the stage almost certainly will end in a bunch sprint. The 202km-stage to Indicatore covers mostly flat roads except for two KOM-rated hills.

    The tall German is currently fine-tuning his form for Milano-Sanremo, scheduled to take place in ten days. On Wednesday evening, he wanted to continue Tirreno in view of the 'Classicissima'. "If I want to start in Milano-Sanremo, I need the kilometres here," he had said.

  • Maglia Rosa – Triumph and Tragedy at the Giro d’Italia

    Camusso was the first Giro winner to wear the pink jersey in 1931
    Article published:
    March 10, 2011, 9:14 GMT
    Cycling News

    Rouleur publishes Herbie Sykes’ history of Italian race

    Maglia rosa is the Italian name for the iconic leader’s jersey at the Giro d’Italia and Herbie Sykes’ book is a detailed insight into the glory and history of Italian cycling. The book is published by Rouleur.

    Over 312 pages, Sykes takes the reader on an intimate journey into the passionate heart of Italian cycling. The maglia rosa was only introduced in 1931 but the book details 100 years of the race with over 100 stunning photographs.

    Each of the 27 chapters tells the story of a legendary rider or recalls a dramatic moment in the history of the Giro d’Italia, while an introduction by 1988 Giro d’Italia winner Andy Hampsten explains the passion of the fervent Italian tifosi who stand at the road side to cheer on the riders.

    Chapters cover Fausto Coppi, Gino Bartali, Eddy Merckx’s mysterious positive drugs test in 1969 and later the tragic demise of Marco Pantani. Others tell the story of lesser known Italian riders and reminds us just how pioneering riders were in the pre-war period when most stages were raced over long distances and on dirt roads.

    Sykes gives his opinion on the doping scandals that have affected the Giro in recent years but manages to end the book with a feeling of optimism, noting how the Giro is enjoying a renaissance under the direction of Angelo Zomegnan.

    Although not perfect and occasionally vague, the book will provide a well-timed history of the race and whet reader’s appetites for this year’s 102nd edition of the Corsa Rosa which begins in Turin on May 7.

    Sykes has recently completed his own tour of Italy to collect the autographs of many of the protagonists detailed in the book. As a result, a limited edition of his book, featuring a...