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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Date published:
January 01, 2013, 0:00 GMT
  • Cavendish in new Omega Pharma-QuickStep kit

    Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma QuickStep)
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 11:55 GMT
    Cycling News

    Former Sky rider poses for new team

    Omega Pharma QuickStep has unveiled a photo of Mark Cavendish in his new team kit. The Manxman's contract with his new squad officially begins on January 1.

    Cavendish moved to the Belgian team in the off-season after just one year with Team Sky. The former world champion missed out on the green jersey at the Tour de France but picked up three Tour stage wins in a year that also saw him take wins in the Giro, Kuurne - Brussel - Kuurne, and the Tour of Britain.

    "The heritage of this team is incredible; it's been around since 2003. I'm proud to wear this jersey that Tom (Boonen) and the other guys on the team have made unique in the group. Now I, too, want to contribute and feel like this jersey I'm wearing is even more my own," Cavendish said.

    However with support lacking at key points in the season, and Sky manager Dave Brailsord openly saying that Cavendish could leave at the end of the Tour, a move to Omega Pharma-QuickStep became increasingly likely and the switch was duly confirmed in October.

    Cavendish joins a team on the up, with Patrick Lefevere's team enjoying one of their most successful ever season in 2012. Tom Boonen was dominant in the spring Classics, while despite patchy form, Tony Martin retained his world time trial title.

    Cavendish is set to compete in the Tour de San Luis which starts later this month in Argentina. He has already stated that he will look to regain the green jersey this July.

    “I will probably anticipate my arrival in Spain by a few days, so I can get right down to hard work. It's going to be an important training camp, during which we're going to be doing a lot of work to prepare for the start of the season. I will make my official debut with this jersey at Tour de San Luis in Argentina.” he said.

    “2013 already looks like...

  • Ciolek hopes for Milan-San Remo invitation

    European riders: Andreas Stauff, Kristian Sbaragli, Martin Reimer, Sergio Pardilla, Gerald Ciolek and Ignatas Konovalovas
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 12:52 GMT
    Cycling News

    German sprinter looking for early form

    Gerald Ciolek (Team MTN-Qhubeka) hopes that his team’s recent invitation to next month’s Omloop Het Nieuwsblad will help entice further invitations from the major spring races.

    Ciolek moved to the Pro Continental team in the off-season after a two-year stint at Omega Pharma QuickStep, and after Team MTN-Qhubeka’s first training camp in South Africa last month, the 26-year-old is hopeful that the team can start the new season with a bang.

    “I really enjoyed the first get together with the team,” the German said.

    “We had good training days in great summer conditions in Johannesburg. To me, the team is very professional and well organised. I never imagined the team management would care so much about the riders. I see great potential in this team; with an average age of 24 we can expect some good progress.”

    “Our first focus of the year will be the spring races. We are very excited to receive an invitation to Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. We hope also to get invitations to Milan-San Remo and Tirreno-Adriatico which would be a big goal for me.”

    Although Ciolek decided to take a step down from the WorldTour ranks he has been impressed by the team's long term plans and their ambitious young squad.

    “There are some young really talented riders on the team, but they are not only future potential. I can see there's already a good level so we don't need to hide in any of the first races.”


  • Bos looks for year-long consistency in 2013

    Theo Bos enjoyed his best road season yet in 2012.
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 13:46 GMT
    Barry Ryan

    Balance crucial for Dutch sprinter

    The WorldTour era may be one of ever-increasing specialisation, with more and more riders targeting specific sections of the calendar to flesh out their UCI points tallies, but for much of the sprinting fraternity, the mantra remains more or less unchanged – win often and win early.

    Certainly, it is a philosophy that Theo Bos will again follow in 2013. The Dutch sprinter enjoyed his best road season to date last year, but rather than look to build his campaign around the Grand Tours this time around, Bos is aiming to place regular deposits in Blanco Pro Cycling’s wins column throughout the season.

    “Of course, it’s a big goal for every rider and sprinter to do well in a Grand Tour but I think I have to be good from January to October,” Bos told Cyclingnews. “Hopefully I can pick up a Grand Tour stage win along the way but I think it’s important not to focus too much on one Grand Tour. You could sacrifice two stage races with four sprint stages to do training camps to prepare for the Grand Tour, but then you could go there and get sick on the second day. That’s not smart.”

    Bos points to Mark Cavendish as one of the very few sprinters whose talents are such that he can afford to focus on the quality of his wins rather than the quantity alone. “But I’m not in that situation,” said Bos, who will begin his season at the Trofeo Mallorca, before heading on to the Tour de Langkawi. “They’re two preparation races where you get some good work in with the team and see how it all unravels,” he said. “It’s important if you can pick up a nice victory there.”

    With Blanco Pro Cycling seeking a new title sponsor to replace Rabobank, who announced its withdrawal from the sport in October, the onus...

  • Gallery: Nibali sports his new Astana colours

    Alessandro Vanotti (Astana).
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 17:02 GMT
    Cycling News

    Guardini and Fuglsang among new signings

    Astana were among the most active teams on the transfer market ahead of the 2013 season, snapping up Vincenzo Nibali, Jakob Fuglsang and Andrea Guardini as part of its rejuvenation of the squad following the retirement of Alexandre Vinokourov.

    The 2013 roster was already presented in Astana before Christmas, but with Nibali et al still under contract with their former teams until December 31, the newcomers were unable to be pictured wearing their new colours.

    With the turning of the year, the 2013 campaign can begin in earnest and Astana have duly released images of their new signings, taken during the team’s December training camp in Sardinia.



  • Siutsou training with team after leg break

    Kanstantsin Siutsou
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 17:39 GMT
    Cycling News

    Sky rider recovered from Tour de France crash

    Kanstantsin Siutsou (Team Sky) is back in training having recovered from the crash that ended his Tour de France and left him with a fracture in the tibia bone of his left leg.

    The Belarusian crashed on the stage to Boulogne-sur-Mer and has spent the last 6 months recovering for the 2013 season. Up until that point he’d been an integral part of Sky’s stage racing success, helping the team to victories in the Volta ao Algarve, Paris-Nice, Tour de Romandie, Bayern-Rundfahrt and the Criterium du Dauphine. His climbing skills, coupled with his ability to ride on the flats meant he was selected for the Tour as well.

    “I remember riding and watching in front of me. There was a crash up ahead and I put out my left leg and slowed down. Then another rider arrived from behind much faster and hit my leg. I can remember the crash but then after that it was more shock. For a second I tried to get up but I knew it was not possible to ride,” Siutsou said on Sky’s team website.

    The Sky rider was back on the turbo trainer by the end of August but the time off the bike wasn’t the only hurdle to overcome. Unable to put any force on his leg, Siutsou also had to recover his full range of motion and strengthen the muscles that had wasted way.

    “Every week I was able to do more exercise. I spent a lot of time in the pool, not only swimming, but simply walking in the pool was beneficial. “

    “It was gradual but day by day I began feeling better. In the morning when I woke up and got out of bed it was a bit difficult to start to walk for the first few steps.”

    Siutsou is now able to train with this teammates as they gear up for the new season at their Mallorca training camp.


  • Lampre adds pea green to blue and fuchsia for 2013

    The 2013 Lampre-Merida jersey
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 19:17 GMT
    Cycling News

    Merida brings new colour to Italian squad

    The Lampre team has incorporated the pea green of bike sponsor Merida into its traditional bright fuchsia and blue kit for the 2013 season, adding the third color to the neck and arm bands of the team's jersey.

    It is the 20th year of sponsorship by the company of the Galbusera family, which first sponsored the cycling team in 1991 as a second partner to Colnago. Current manager Guiseppe Saronni raced his last year with the team that year. Lampre continued as a sponsor through 1995,.

    Lampre returned to the peloton in 1999 and has been in the professional peloton ever since.

    The team of Damiano Cunego, Michele Scarponi and Alessandro Petacchi faced an uphill battle in 2012, but will replace directeur sportif Roberto Damiani with former classics stand-out Michele Bartoli in 2013 in hopes of turning around its fortunes.

  • Persistence pays for Kimberley Wells

    Kimberley Wells (Specialized-Securitor) on the podium
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 19:47 GMT
    Jane Aubrey

    Australian gets the better of Gilmore and Hoskins

    Kimberley Wells' victory in the opening race of the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic unearthed another of those stories which keep coming to the fore in women's cycling in the current age of the push for reform.

    Wells, who races for Australian domestic outfit Specialized-Securitor, overcame her more-fancied rivals including defending champion Melissa Hoskins (Orica-AIS) and Rochelle Gilmore (Wiggle Honda) who filled up the other two steps on the podium. But this wasn't a story about how the local team got the better of the big names. Instead, it was about Wells' persistence to be there in the first place.

    Wells is a doctor by trade and remarkably having only really "dabbled" in cycling in the past, has been working as a locum in order to spend more time on the bike and further her racing career under the watch of Olympic gold medallist, Sarah Carrigan. It's a story unlikely to be replicated in elite men's cycling.

    "It's a huge sacrifice," Wells admitted. "I still do extra study because I don't want to lose my skills but I'm pretty keen on the cycling," she laughed.

    "I remember being in fourth year med school and wanting to do this. I lived in North Queensland at the time; disposable income is hard when you're at uni. As a woman trying to do cycling at that point, I couldn't do it. Basically I just had to wait another three or four years..."

    Among the arguments for better pay and racing conditions for women is the disparity between the sexes when it comes to life after cycling. Women are more likely to study to give themselves something to fall back on post-racing career - and it's often to the detriment of that same racing career, in terms of the amount of time spent on the road.

    The 27-year-old pointed to the importance of the growth of the Australian National Road Series in the development of the...

  • Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling showcase 2013 team

    The riders of Vacansoleil-DCM line up for their 2013 team photo
    Article published:
    January 01, 2013, 22:24 GMT
    Cycling News

    Flecha, Rujano, Bole and Van Poppel model team kit

    While many of the teams, including Vacansoleil-DCM, had undertaken training camps prior to the start of 2013, it's only now that new recruits can officially show-off their colours for the coming year. The full contingent of riders was on-hand for a Vacansoleil photo shoot with a number of riders posing for portraits.

    Juan Antonio Flecha comes from Team Sky and is one of the few Spaniards in the professional peloton who excels in the often brutal conditions experienced at the Spring Classics. His experience in the cobbled races will no doubt bring additional fire power to the likes of Björn Leukemans - who is a protagonist in the tough one-day races like Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.

    Grega Bole has been officially named in the squad for 2013 after an internal investigation into his apparent involvement and naming in the USADA report that focused on the systematic doping at the US Postal and Discovery Channel teams.

    "An analysis by an independent clinical chemist of the profiles in Bole's biological passport has shown nothing inappropriate," said team manager Daan Luijkx in a statement. "Bole in front of our management, lawyer, his manager and me proved his innocence answering a number of questions.

    The three-time Giro d'Italia stage winner and Tour de Lankawi overall victor José Rujano will be the team's hopes in the Italian grand tour and hillier stage races. The pint-sized Venezuelan climber will hope to reverse the disappointment of his...