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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Date published:
December 18, 2012, 0:00 GMT
  • Jayco Herald Sun Tour champion Haas back with Australian team

    Nathan Haas (Genesys Wealth Advisors) poses with his new trophy
    Article published:
    December 17, 2012, 23:02 GMT
    Cycling News

    Garmin-Sharp rider returns to race that kicked off pro career

    The most recent winner of the Jayco Herald Sun Tour Nathan Haas has been added to the Australian National Team for the 2013 edition that will begin in Williamstown on 3 January. Haas won the title in 2011 on the back of a stunning domestic season that landed him a contract with the current Garmin-Sharp WorldTour squad.

    Haas had signaled his desire to return to the iconic tour that "kicked off" his professional career and will line up alongside former two-time winner Simon Gerrans and this year's King of the Mountains winner at the Vuelta a España, Simon Clarke in the Australian National team.

    "For me it's awesome, I would not have missed it for the world. To be given a spot on the Australian team, well it's really nice to be considered for that," said Hass.

    "It's a great race to be part of a winning team and I remember the vibe my team had and the spirit it gave the group after we won it last year, it was like nothing I had ever felt before," Haas said.

    While Haas would love to repeat the victory his achieved in the previous edition, he understands his season is based around other goals which come later in the year. For this reason, Haas was hesitant to suggest he'll be in race-winning condition.

    "January is really early to be firing, my calendar has been worked more toward April and May.

    "I'm hoping we can really string a good race together, and I'm there wholeheartedly for the...

  • 2012 Reader Poll: Best Tech Innovation

    Some bike manufacturers are already on board with disc brakes on road bikes, such as Volagi whose entire range is disc-equipped.
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 0:40 GMT
    James Huang

    Disc brakes for road and 'cross bikes top the list

    As good as modern rim brakes have become, it's clear that the tide is changing as nearly one-third of Cyclingnews Reader Poll respondents voted disc brakes for road and cyclocross bikes as the top tech innovation of 2012.

    That so many voted for disc brakes is particularly impressive considering that nearly all of the most popular models have design roots more than a decade old and save for a handful of mechanical-to-hydraulic conversion systems, all of them are cable actuated as well. Even so, the stopping power and modulation provided by a stainless steel rotor, two nearly non-compressible brake pads, and a stiff, compact caliper body easily trumps squeezing two blocks of rubber against an aluminum or carbon fiber rim - and the advantages only grow exponentially in wet conditions.

    Moving the braking surface away from the rim also eliminates the dangers of heat build-up on long descents, thus preventing tubular glue failure and also likely paving the way for lighter-weight carbon fiber clinchers. The disc brake market is sure to get a big boost in 2013, too, with the anticipated release of fully hydraulic systems from SRAM and Shimano.

    Frame, wheel, and component manufacturers still have a few things to figure out during the transition period but one thing's for certain: disc brakes are coming, and faster than we originally expected, too.

    Coming in a strong second are cycling-specific smartphone apps. Whereas advanced features were once limited solely to dedicated, high-end cycling computers, the explosion of apps has now packed many of those features - and then some, in many cases - into the phone that's probably...

  • Gallery: Nibali trains with new Astana teammates

    Nibali joins Astana for the 2013 season and makes sure Tiralongo know who's boss
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 2:17 GMT
    Cycling News

    Kazakhstan teams lays the foundation for 2013 season

    Vincenzo Nibali has yet to pull on the sky blue Astana jersey and will only officially be an Astana rider from January 1. Yet the Italian stage race rider has already working hard with is new teammates at a recent training camp in Sardinia.

    All the 2013 Astana squad spent two weeks training together in Arzachena, in northern Sardegna, staying at the impressive Tenuta Pilastru. The area is packed with wealthy tourists in the summer but is deserted in December, with sheep far out numbering local residents.

    Astana used the quiet roads to get in vital base kilometres ready for the 2013 season, with the 2012 Astana colours contrasting with those of new signing who have to ride in their 2012 team colours until the end of the year.

    That meant that Jakob Fuglsang was in his black and white Radioshack colours, Nibali was in Liquigas-Cannondale green and Italian sprinter Andrea Guardini rode his fluorescent Farnese Vini kit. New American signing Evan Huffman got a taste of riding in Europe and rode alongside Nibali in his black California Giant-Specialized kit.

    Guardini was the start sprinter of the Farnese Vini and managed to beat Mark Cavendish to win stage 18 to Vedelago. He will be the protected sprinter at Astana in 2013 and have support from Jacopo Guarnieri and Francesco Gavazzi.

    Other new riders include Under 23 road race world champion Aletxsey Lutsenko. He trained in his rainbow jersey but will be back in Astana colours in 2013 when he makes his full professional debut.

    The 2013 Astana roster includes 10 Italian riders, with Alessandro Vanotti and Valerio Agnoli moving from Liquigas-Cannondale to Astana to work for Nibali. Much of the team staff is also Italian with Marco Pantani's former directeur sportif Giuseppe Martinelli now team manager responsible...

  • BikeNZ gets $15.6 million in Olympic, Commonwealth Games funding

    Kiwi Shane Archbold winds it up for the flying lap
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 4:50 GMT
    Cycling News

    More cash required due to growth

    BikeNZ will receive $15.6 million over the next four years as part of its funding base heading into the 2014 Commonwealth Games, the 2016 Rio Olympics.

    High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ), a government subsidiary responsible for channelling investment into the various sporting programs, provides around $60 million in funding each year.

    "We fully appreciate the challenging job of High Performance Sport New Zealand in this current economic environment," said BikeNZ CEO, Kieran Turner.

    "We look forward to continuing our close working relationship with HPSNZ over the next two years as we move to a centralised programme for riders and staff at the AvantiDrome in Cambridge.

    "Our extraordinary growth along with the fluid and changing environment we are operating in will allow us to review our progress with HPSNZ in 2014 with a view to increase our funding for the crucial final two years leading into Rio."

    Turner explained that BikeNZ is likely to spend more, given the growth of the high performance program, rising costs and the increased outlay for the Olympic qualification process, than what will be available through HPSNZ.

    "We will look closely at the numbers and make some hard decisions around our overall structure, which programmes we are able to commit to and the priorities in terms of the level of support.

    "In some ways we are victims of our growth and the investment we have made. In the last four years BikeNZ has won 16 elite world championship medals on the track alone. We have seven riders or teams currently in the top five in the world across three different codes, and a further five in the top 16 who are benchmarking strongly against Olympic medallist at the same stage.

    "Clearly under the current funding levels we will need to prioritise our investment because we won't have the resource to deliver across all these riders and teams."

    Bike NZ will be on the lookout for other funding...

  • Bos concerned by British track dominance

    Team Blanco sprinter Theo Bos scored seven wins during the 2012 season.
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 10:33 GMT
    Barry Ryan

    "British team is the only WorldTour-level team in an amateur sport"

    Among those watching the track events at the London 2012 Olympics with particular interest was Theo Bos, who was a silver medallist behind Ryan Bailey in the individual sprint in Athens in 2004 before opting to move across to the road four years later following the Beijing Olympics.

    If the Dutchman was harbouring any lingering doubts about that decision, they were quietly and definitively assuaged by events in the London velodrome. Backed by some £26 million of National Lottery funding through the four-year Olympic cycle, the Great Britain set-up was operating on a different financial plane to its competitors and duly dominated the medal table, winning seven of the ten gold medals on offer.

    During the later years of a track career that yielded five world titles across three disciplines, Bos began to realise that it was becoming impossible to compete with the resources of the British set-up, a trend which formed part of his rationale for swapping the boards for the road, where he enjoyed his best season to date in 2012.

    “I saw the times of the British in London, it was incredible, and for sure, I would have had no chance,” Bos told Cyclingnews as his Blanco Pro Cycling Team gathered in Fuerteventura last week. “The other countries, like the French, I know how good they are, but they have no chance against the British, and I know that with the tools I had in Holland, it was going to be really difficult to compete at that level.

    “The British team is the only WorldTour level team in an amateur sport. The other teams have the tools of a Continental team.

    “I was ahead of everybody for some time but they caught me – and I don’t think that was so difficult – but now they have really moved ahead of everybody.”

    On learning of a reduction in...

  • Arise Sir Wiggins: Tour winner set to receive knighthood

    2012 Tour de France champion Bradley Wiggins celebrates on the Champs-Élysées with his son.
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 11:05 GMT
    Cycling News

    Brailsford also tipped for knighthood in New Year Honour

    Bradley Wiggins and Dave Brailsford are expected to be recommended for knighthoods in the New Year Honours list according to a report in the Daily Telegraph newspaper.

    The 2012 Tour de France winner will become Sir Bradley Wiggins if he chooses to accept the title. He is already a CBE and would be awarded the knighthood by the Queen of England in a special ceremony in 2013.

    Knight or dame titles for sport are usually limited to one per year but the huge success of British athletes at the London Olympic Games has lead to the creation of a special list of sporting titles.

    Cyclist Sarah Storey is understood to have been recommended for a damehood after winning four gold medals at the London Paralympics. Dave Brailsford will receive a knighthood for his role as performance director of British Cycling and manager at Team Sky. Chris Hoy received a knighthood in 2008 after winning three gold medals at the Beijing Olympics.

    Other successful British cyclist are likely to be nominated for lesser titles when the New Year Honours are officially announced on December 29.

    The Telegraph reports that the Wiggins has been notified of his knighthood but is not allowed to confirm the news.

    Speculation has been rife that he would get the title since winning the Tour de France. He hinted that the title of 'Sir' was on the way after collecting the BBC sports Personality of the Year Award on Sunday.

    When asked if the Sports Personality award was the perfect end to the year Wiggins said: “Yeah, it is. There’s only the knighthood to come, isn’t there, really?” the Telegraph reported.

  • Ferrari to make Lampre debut at the Tour Down Under

    Stage 11 winner Roberto Ferrari (Androni Giocattoli)
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 12:59 GMT
    Cycling News

    Italian sprinter targets stage wins in Australia

    The Lampre team has named its seven-rider team for the Tour Down Under, confirming that new sprinter Roberto Ferrari will make his debut with the team in Australia.

    Ferrari won a stage of the Giro d'Italia in Montecatini Terme while riding for the Androni Giocattoli but earned his bad boy tag for his fearless sprinting tactics and for bringing down Mark Cavendish and several other riders during the sprint on stage two of the Giro d'Italia to Horsens.

    Ferrari will compete for the first time as part of a WorldTour team at the evening Down Under Classic criterium on January 20, where he will likely clash with the best Australian sprinters and usual Tour Down Under contenders such as Andre Greipel.

    He will be supported by an experienced leadout train that includes Davide Cimolai, Elia Favilli, Manuele Mori and Daniele Pietropolli and Simone Stortoni. Lloyd will lead the team on the hillier stages that are expected to decide the other overall standings of the Tour Down Under.

    "Australia will be the start of something new for me. I'm motivated: I want to test myself against the best sprinters in the WorldTour and I'll have the extra kick of the adrenaline from making my debut with Team Lampre," Ferrari said in a press release issued by the team.

    "I'll also have a chance to enter the cycling record books: If I win in Australia, it'll mean my palmares includes a win on each of the five continents because I've already won in Europe, Asia, America and Africa."

    The Italian riders will leave for Australia on January 12. Lloyd is already at home, preparing for his home WorldTour race.

    "I've been...

  • Onsale now: 100 Years of the Tour de France

    100 Hundred Years of the Tour de France
    Article published:
    December 18, 2012, 15:26 GMT
    Cycling News

    Special editon bookazine from Procycling

    For its entire history, the Tour de France has been an event steeped in heroism, intrigue and controversy. Valiant cyclists such as Coppi, Anquetil, Merckx, Hinault and Indurain have all become riders of legendary acclaim, while the likes of the Festina team and, of course, Lance Armstrong, all plummeted from grace when their organised doping inside the Tour was exposed.

    Scandal and sensation aside, the real drama that unfolds on the roads, cobbles and mountains of Europe each July is what makes this event totally compelling. The attacks, breakaways, sprints and crashes all make for a stunning sporting spectacle unlike any other. Famed for being the most gruelling event on the planet, simply completing each stage of the Tour is a feat of superhuman strength and endurance, never mind finishing on the podium.

    The makers of Procycling magazine span the decades, celebrating the pioneers, heroes and winners and examining the rogues and controversies in-depth. We also look ahead to what the future holds for this great race, starting with the hundredth Tour in 2013.

    Order your copy for £9.99, online, here.

    To download on Apple Newsstand, please first download the free ProCycling magazine App. Within this app you can purchase 100 years of the Tour de France