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First Edition Cycling News, Thursday, November 14, 2013

Date published:
November 14, 2013, 0:00 GMT
  • Fahey to step down from position as head of WADA

    WADA president John Fahey gives an address at a symposium in Lausanne, Switzerland.
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 0:08 GMT
    Cycling News

    Reedie to take over at helm of anti-doping organization

    After six years as head of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), John Fahey will step down from his position with Great Britain's Craig Reedie taking over.

    "Doping in sports remains an issue as we have seen in the Lance Armstrong case," Fahey told Le Monde at the WADA conference in South Africa. "But we have made great strides in our ability to catch the cheaters. Still, we are convinced that there are many more athletes using doping than there are caught."

    Lance Armstrong had hundreds of tests throughout his career but never tested positive.

    "The anti-doping agencies have admitted that Armstrong has escaped punishment for far too long." Fahey said. "The positive side of things is that USADA has implemented a non-analytical approach to this case so Armstrong received his punishment without ever being caught. This non-analytical approach complements the traditional methods we have."

    WADA was created in 1999. It started with 150,000 doping tests a year. This year the amounts of tests carried out is around 250,000. Still, only 1% of the tests were flagged as positive.

    "The anti-doping community has to keep working to up the level of positive tests," Fahey said. "We don't know the exact percentage of athletes using banned substances, but we do know it's much higher than the percentage that is caught. The new WADA code of 2015 will implement stricter regulations."

    The relationship between WADA and former UCI president Pat McQuaid has always been a tense one. Brian Cookson, who was elected president of the UCI in September has asked WADA to conduct an investigation into the UCI's role in cycling's doping problems in recent years.

    "We already expressed that we look forward to working with Brian Cookson. WADA will execute an independent investigation into cycling's recent past, as requested by Mr. Cookson and the UCI."

    WADA has also appealed the decision of the Spanish authorities to destroy...

  • search2retain/health announce 2014 roster

    The 2013 search2retain powered by squad
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 1:33 GMT
    Cycling News

    Five new riders for next season

    Having had its most successful season in 2013, search2retain p/b is looking to improve in 2014 with the recruitment of several exciting riders. The new roster comes on the back of the announcement in October that the team's partnership with the Singaporean OCBC Continental Cycling Team would extend to the end of 2015.

    "Our collaboration arrangement with OCBC Singapore Continental Cycling team has made rider recruitment both harder and easier," said team principal Peter Shandon. "When we are looking at a new rider, we are actually thinking about how they will fit into OCBC and if they have the capacity to step up to that next level of racing overseas in UCI races."

    OCBC's commitment comes on the back of a successful Subaru National Road Series (NRS) were the team finished fifth in the team classification.

    Joining the team in 2014 are Michael Rice, Patrick Bevin, James Hepburn, Brendan Canty and Stuart Shaw. James Hepburn and Stuart Shaw have proven themselves in the NRS while the other riders are less well known to Australian cycling fans.

    There have been several departures from the team with Neil van der Ploeg joining Huon-Genesys while Eric Sheppard and Cameron Bayly are moving on having been offered contracts with the OCBC Continental Cycling team.

    The team has retained the services of Alistair Donohoe, Angus Tobin, Oliver Kent-Spark, Stuart Smith, Tim Guy and Tom Donald.

    Bevin has spent the past four years racing in the US with Bissell Pro Cycling. Bevin moved back to Australia having been attracted to "the overall vision of the team, creating a culture based on ethics that will contribute to becoming a strong team."

    "I look forward to racing the NRS which is really going from strength to...

  • Gaudry making strides for women's cycling

    Tracey Gaudry in her Australian Champion's kit in 1999
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 3:10 GMT
    Laura Weislo

    New UCI Vice President introducing changes

    With the transition from the old UCI to the governing body under Brian Cookson came a renewed focus on women's cycling, and the appointment of the organisation's first female Vice President, Tracey Gaudry. The 44-year-old is a relative newcomer to cycling politics, having only been on the Management Committee for less than a year, but has been a quick study since earning the backing of the Oceania confederation last December.

    While women's cycling is not her only project in the UCI, it is one to which she brings a particular expertise, having been a top-level racer herself in addition to earning management degree and acting as CEO of the Amy Gillett Foundation, and she is hoping to inspire more women to put themselves forward as leaders in the sport.

    Speaking to Cyclingnews at the road world championships in Florence, shortly after Cookson's election, Gaudry gave some insights into what it takes to, in the space of one year, come from a relatively small role in the sport to being a major player at a global level.

    The surprise? It was largely due to Lance Armstrong, but not in the way one might expect.

    "When the [USADA] Reasoned Decision was released, there were questions over anyone who was in that era. The question was, how do we move forward. I wrote to the Australian Sports Commission, Cycling Australia and a couple other bodies and said 'I have something to offer'," Gaudry told Cyclingnews.

    "I was already working with [the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority], and said 'I'm not sure what it looks like, but I'm putting whatever I have forward to be part of that future'.

    "When I spoke to Cycling Australia, we talked about the Oceania role, and that was the decision point: do you take that step and be put forward as a candidate?"

  • Trofeo Alfredo Binda disappointed with Gent-Wevelgem overlap

    It would not Trofeo Binda without confetti for the podium
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 9:15 GMT
    Cycling News

    Women's World Cup round cannot change date

    The organisers of the Trofeo Alfredo Binda, the second round of the women's World Cup in 2014, expressed their disappointment with the newly UCI classified women's Gent-Wevelgem being put on the same date, March 30, as their race.

    The president of Cycling Sport Promotion, Mario Minervino, had hoped that the UCI would protect the World Cups by preventing any such conflicts.

    "We are very disappointed," Minervino said after attending the UCI seminar for race organisers. "The International Cycling Union is not protecting World Cup races as in the past. We are not afraid of competition, we just want to protect the event."

    While the World Cup provides an opportunity for women to score more UCI points than the 1.2-ranked Gent-Wevelgem, the Belgian event is held on the same day as the men's WorldTour event and provides extra exposure for the women's teams and their sponsors.

    Minervino was pleased with several changes which have been introduced to the World Cups: the introduction of intermediate sprint, mountains and young riders classifications each with associated jerseys as well as additional UCI points.

    "The relaunch of women's cycling was much talked about, as well as the new rules relating to the points system and the three categories: leader, sprint and GPM. This was a good opportunity to propose solutions to the calendar issues. We are not against concurring events, but we need new rules that protect the organizers. Among other things, the UCI complimented our organization and the excellent work undertaken in our side events."

    Minervino insisted that the race must be held on March 30, and cannot be moved. "The Trofeo Binda is very important and fundamental in the women's calendar and is also a major event for the area. With the mayor of Cittiglio, Fabrizio Anzani, we have made plans for next year. Following requests from the mayor of Laveno, Maria Graziella Giacon, and the Councillor for Sport, Roberto Bianchi, the...

  • Froome: Lance Armstrong can help cycling by sharing his story

    Chris Froome (Sky) makes history, winning atop Mont Ventoux and extending his overall lead
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 11:15 GMT
    Cycling News

    Tour de France winner wants Armstrong to tell the truth

    Tour de France champion Chris Froome has called on Lance Armstrong to step forward and tell anti-doping authorities and an independent commission everything about his doping past.

    Froome, who won the Tour de France this July and faced a barrage of questions over both Armstrong’s doping past and his own victorious performance told Sky Sports News, "I'd want to see him (Lance Armstrong) come forward and really tell it like it is and say exactly what happened so that we can put the story to bed."

    Armstrong was stripped of all seven of his Tour de France titles last year by USADA as a result of their Reasoned Decision into doping practices at the US Postal Team. A number of Armstrong’s former teammates testified that he and they doped and although Armstrong tried to fight the claims initially he ultimately declined to fight the charges and was handed a life-time ban.

    He admitted to doping in January of this year and has since stated that he would help an independent commission with any questions they had. Armstrong may hope that such a move would see a reduction in his ban but earlier this week WADA stressed that only exceptional circumstances would see his case re-opened.

    On Wednesday the UCI announced a collaboration with WADA for an independent commission to be conveyed, with Armstrong being invited to talk.

    "We will have a commission of inquiry which the UCI will manage and run," UCI president Brian Cookson told the AP. "We...

  • Saxo Bank signs neo-pro Jesper Hansen

    The new Saxo Bank Tinkoff team kit
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 12:59 GMT
    Cycling News

    Danish talent signs for two years

    Jesper Hansen will join Saxo Bank next year. The 23-year-old Danish rider was a stagiaire for the team from August of this year and rode the USA Pro CyclingChallenge, World Ports Classic and Italian one-day races Giro dell'Emilia and GP Bruno Beghelli with the team. In Colorado he finished 26th in the overall classification and sixth in the best young rider ranking, underlining his climbing abilities.

    "Jesper has shown us that he is ready to be part of the pro peloton after some impressive performances as a stagiaire for our team. He is still young and needs to further develop, but if he can continue to progress, I see a huge potential in him. He is an exceptional climber, and I believe he can grow into a fantastic stage racer in the future. So obviously I'm delighted that he will be part of our team in the years to come," team owner Bjarne Riis says.

    Hansen who just turned 23 last month is delighted with his new team. "I look forward to continuiing my development in this team and get the new season started. In my first year as a professional, I'll be focusing on learning, developing and gaining some more experience rather than results, and I feel great support from the team in this matter," Jesper Hansen says.

    Hansen comes from Danish continental team Cult Energy and will find current team mate and Liège-Bastogne-Liège U23-winner Michael Valgren at his new team Saxo Bank. The team roster consists of 19 riders at the moment. Bjarne Riis hasn't announced any other new signings yet. 


  • Gallery: Garmin-Sharp holds mini-camp in Boulder

    Time for some rappelling at the Garmin mini-camp in Boulder
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 14:00 GMT
    Cycling News

    New riders gather for wilderness team building

    It's only been a few weeks since the 2013 road season came to a conclusion, but teams have begun their preparations for the upcoming 2014 season in earnest. US-based WorldTour squad Garmin-Sharp recently conducted a mini-camp in Boulder, Colorado, where new riders joined the staff for an outdoor wilderness team building adventure.

    New hires such as Janier Acevedo, Nathan Brown, Phil Gaimon, Lasse Norman Hansen, Ben King, Tom Jelte Slagter, and Dylan van Baarle and team staff including Bingen Fernandez, Geert Van Bondt, Eric Van Lancker and Charlie Wegelius joined several current team members such as Alex Howes and Tyler Farrar in Boulder for several days of rappelling, hiking and team building exercises.

    The camp attendees' team building opportunities included a role-reversal where riders became staff for the day and staff became riders. The role reversal was designed to build a better understanding for riders and staff about each other's roles - staff were divided by riders into teams and the riders, playing the role of directors, soigneurs and mechanics, designed training routes and team rosters and were responsible for everything for the ride - from bottles to bikes.

    The camp also featured the Colorado Argyle Challenge which consisted of a wilderness course more than 8.5 miles long, including 3,000 feet of elevation gain, and involved challenge checkpoints that required skillful communication, leadership, and the ability to work together efficiently and effectively to solve problems. Riders also went on a New Balance trail run, designed by the sponsor, with elite New Balance athletes Tony Krupicka, Jenny Simpson and Emma Coburn.

    Click here for a photo gallery from the Boulder mini-camp.

  • CONI prosecutor asks for two year ban for Ballan

    Giro della Tosanca winner Alessandro Ballan recovers after his victory.
    Article published:
    November 14, 2013, 15:09 GMT
    Cycling News

    BMC rider facing suspension in Mantova case

    BMC's Alessandro Ballan is facing the possibility of a two year ban after the Anti-Doping prosecutor of the Italian Olympic Committee recommended the suspension in relation to the Mantova doping investigation.

    The prosecutor also recommended a lifetime ban for pharmacist Guido Nigrelli and Doctor Fiorenzo Egeo Bonazzi, who were accused of assisting with doping in the Lampre team in 2009.

    The recommendation for Ballan's punishment was based on article 2.2 of the World Anti-Doping Agency code, "Use or attempted use by an athlete of a prohibited substance or a prohibited method", while the bans for Nigrelli and Bonazzi fall under articles 2.7 and 2.8, trafficking or attempted trafficking and administration or attempted administration of any prohibited substance or prohibited method.

    The investigation first came to light in 2010, reportedly as fallout from the testimony of Emanuele Sella, who tested positive for EPO CERA in 2008. When the allegations surfaced, Lampre refused to suspend any of its riders, but Ballan and his then-teammate Mauro Santambrogio were pulled from competition by BMC.

    In 2011, the Gazzetta dello Sport published more details of the investigation, which included wiretaps of phone conversations about doping (EPO and...