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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Date published:
January 26, 2010, 20:39
  • Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team presented in Holland

    The Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team for 2010
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 20:21
    By:
    Sue George, Mountain Bike Editor

    Team steps up to new goals in 2010

    The 23 riders of the 2010 Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team were presented to the press and sponsors at a former convent on the border of Holland and Belgium on Tuesday. The Pro continental team has signed seven new riders, who are all eager to start the season.

    Thirteen victories, 42 top three places and many attacks put Vacansoleil on the cycling map last year when the team also finished second in the European Tour rankings and won a stage in the Tour of Spain. After a successful debut in 2009, the team is aiming higher for 2010. To help its efforts, the team has added the riders like the Feuillu brothers Brice and Romain and Alberto Ongarato, Gorik Gardeyn, Stephané Rossetto, Rob Ruygh and Joost van Leijen.

    "When the team was training in Benidorm, I saw a motivated bunch of riders that want to make their mark and others who want to achieve a result on the world calendar in 2010," said Sports Director Michel Cornelisse.

    The team is aiming for a top three result in a Monument or Classic on the World Calendar, wants to participate in a Grand Tour and gain a top 17 spot in the world rankings. In particular, the squad has hopes of being called to the starting line of the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France.

    "Good results in the spring and the general development of our team and its good reputation may help us achieve places in Rotterdam, Amsterdam or even in Sevilla for the start of Vuelta a Espana," said Sports Director Hilaire Van Der Schueren, naming the start cities of the three Grand Tours for 2010.

    "As an international pro continental team, we are aware of our reliance upon a wild card and we have to prove we deserve this. At first, the team and sponsors will focus on the initial races, keeping a Grand Tour in mind."

    "It's vital our riders and team participate in at least one Grand Tour in order to develop. It's never easy for race organisers of the Grand Tours to hand out the wild cards. This shows cycling is increasing in popularity, which is great news."

    Expectations are high for the team. "The budget and the number of staff members has increased since last winter. I am confident in our riders and staff and expect 100 percent effort," said Team Manager Daan Luijkx. "It will be difficult to achieve all of our goals, but we are challenging ourselves as cycling is a professional sport."

    The team will display the logo of the Kika foundation on the sleeves of its jerseys for 2010. The Kika foundation is a Dutch charity which finances research for children with cancer and provides support for their families. The word "Kika" stands for Children Cancer Free in Dutch.

    The team decided to support the foundation in the spring of 2009. In addition of providing Kika with the opportunity of greater brand awareness, the team will raise money for the charity. Team manager Daan Luijkx said in Wernhout that the bike on which the team gets its biggest 2010 victory will be auctioned, with all proceeds going to Kika.

    2010 Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
    Borut Bozic (Slovenia)
    Matteo Carrara (Italy)
    Brice Feillu (France)
    Romain Feillu (France)
    Gorik Gardeyn (Belgium)
    Michal Golas (Poland)
    Johnny Hoogerland (The Netherlands)
    Sergey Lagutin (Uzbekistan)
    Björn Leukemans (Belgium)
    Marco Marcato (Italy)
    Wouter Mol (The Netherlands)
    Martin Mortensen (Denmark)
    Jens Mouris (The Netherlands)
    Alberto Ongarato (Italy)
    Wout Poels (The Netherlands)
    Matthé Pronk (The Netherlands)
    Stephané Rossetto (France)
    Rob Ruygh (The Netherlands)
    Bobbie Traksel (The Netherlands)
    Arnoud van Groen (The Netherlands)
    Joost van Leijen (The Netherlands)
    Frederik Veuchelen (Belgium)
    Lieuwe Westra (The Netherlands)

    Sport directors: Hilaire Van Der Schueren (Belgium) and Michel Cornelisse (The Netherlands)
    Team Manager: Daan Luijkx (The Netherlands)

  • Basso moves up the start of his 2010 racing season

    Ivan Basso finishes his preparation for the morning ride.
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 18:28
    By:
    Cycling News

    Liquigas-Doimo team beguns racing, sans Basso, this weekend

    Ivan Basso is moving up 2010 racing season debut. The Italian had planned to race the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya starting March 22, but instead he will be at the starting line earlier than originally planned - at the GP dell'Insubria and the GP di Lugano on February 27 and 28.

    "The results obtained during my winter training are really good and,together with management and trainer Aldo Sassi, we thought that move to an earlier start could be useful," said Basso.

    "My training plan was studied so I could be ready for the most important events of the season and these races, following a period of altitude training at Teide, will help me toward my goals. These races aren't a test." Basso intends to use the competitions more as supplemental training.

    In addition, Basso said he was moving up his debut for his fans. "During last season, I received a warm welcome everywhere," he said. "Many months passed since my last race and I miss it. I want to meet my fans again - they are fundamental to my work."

    He added yet a third reason for the program change. "I will also get to race near home - another good reason to accept the invitation to attend these races.

    Basso's Liquigas-Doimo team will start its Italian racing season with him at the Giro della Provincia di Reggio Calabria from January 30 through February 2. Directeur sportifs Stefano Zanatta and Biagio Conte will be in charge of the team including Manuel Quinziato, Aliaksandr Kuchynski, Daniel Oss, Mauro Finetto, Jacopo Guarnieri, Fabio Sabatini and Brian Bach Vandborg.

  • Tour 2011 to start on Passage du Gois

    A windmill along the route of the Tour of Vendée.
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 11:47
    By:
    Hedwig Kröner

    ASO confirms 2011 Grand Départ in Vendée

    Tour de France organiser ASO has revealed the itinerary of the 2011 Tour's first stages in the Vendée region. Confirming previous assumptions that the 2011 Grand Départ would take place in the central west coast of France, race director Christian Prudhomme announced on Tuesday that the first stage of the 2011 Grand Tour would start on the island of Noirmoutier, south of Nantes.

    Stage one on Saturday, July 2, 2011, will see the riders depart from the island onto the mainland via the famous Passage du Gois, where a massive pile-up in 1999 made cycling history. The slippery road between the island and the mainland is flooded by the tides twice a day, and will provide for spectacular scenery for a Grand Départ.

    The first stage will end on the Mont des Alouettes, at 232 metres of altitude.

    Stage two will see the riders battle against the clock in a team timetrial of 23 kilometres set around the town of Les Essarts. Stage three will start in Olonne-sur-Mer.

    The Vendée region is hosting the start of the race for the fourth time in 20 years after already receiving it in 1993, 1999 and 2005. The traditional teams' presentation will be staged in Puy-du-Fou, where the 1993 and 1999 prologues took place.

     

  • Amore & Vita creates Espoir team

    Italy's Ivano Fanini (l) strikes at those behind the doping cases of Riccardo Riccò and Emanuele Sella
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 11:20
    By:
    Hedwig Kröner

    Italian squad supports Spanish amateur team

    Italian Continental team Amore & Vita has decided to create an affiliate reserve team in Spain, which will also be named Amore & Vita. The elite and U23 squad will be based in Granada, Andalucia, and directed by former Saeco professional Ignacio Rodriguez and former Amore & Vita rider José Manuel Carballo.

    In tune with the spirit and ethical values of the Italian Amore & Vita team, its Spanish affiliate will focus on clean racing, also welcoming riders that have left behind their ties to doping. The first recruit of the new team will be Adolfo García Quesada, brother of Carlos, who were both linked to Operación Puerto.

    The first race of the Italian outfit will be the Tour du Cameroun (UCI Cat. 2.2), taking place in the African country from February 15-26. Long-term objectives include for the squad to become professional and get access to higher-level races.
     

  • Landis breaks lap record in Bahamas TT

    Floyd Landis
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 10:29
    By:
    Cycling News

    Rock Racing future still unclear despite big name riders

    Floyd Landis has debuted for the Rock Racing team at the three-stage Tour of Bahamas this weekend, recording the fastest lap time during the time trial and reportedly beating the course record set by David Zabriskie in 2008.

    Landis rode in the Rock Racing kit, despite questions over the American team's future this season, recording a 5:48.601 for the second lap of the time trial.

    "All that drinking is starting to pay off," Landis wrote in an e-mail, according to NeilBrowne.com. "I beat the course record set by Zman [David Zabriskie] two years ago and I was on somebody else's road bike with clinchers and no aero clothes. Take that f@*#ers."

    Several videos of Landis at the Tour of the Bahamas show the 34-year-old wearing a Rock Racing outfit. "I told them [Rock Racing] that I wanted to do that race so they sent me a kit," Landis said.

    But even Landis himself wasn't sure whether or not Rock Racing would continue to be part of the American racing scene this season after being denied a Professional Continental license by the UCI.

    "I honestly don't know," he continued. "I don't know even if [team owner] Ball has thought about the team these last two weeks. I have no clue what's going on. After the Tour of the Bahamas I'm going back to my shack behind the car wash. Maybe I'll write a book."

    The Tour of Bahamas was won by Garmin-Transitions' Caleb Fairly, with his team-mateTaylor Sheldon placing second.

  • Armstrong changes racing programme

    Lance Armstrong (RadioShack) after the final stage of his second Tour Down Under
    Article published:
    January 26, 2010, 10:05
    By:
    Hedwig Kröner

    To ride Criterium International instead of Volta a Cataluña?

    Lance Armstrong has reportedly changed his early season racing schedule. Initially planned to race the Volta a Cataluña in Spain, where he would have competed against former team-mate and 2009 Tour de France winner Alberto Contador, the RadioShack team leader is to participate in the Critérium International instead.

    According to Spanish paper Marca, Armstrong prefers not to line up in the Spanish stage race taking place from March 22-28, which is certain of Contador's presence. The Critérium International is a shorter, two-day and three-stages long event which will take place on March 27 and 28. The French race, owned by Tour de France organiser ASO, traditionally takes place in the Northern region around Charleville-Mézières, but this year will get underway on the island of Corsica.

    At the Critérium International, Armstrong will have to battle against Team Saxo Bank's Jens Voigt, who has won the race four times. The American competed in the event twice, finishing second in 2002, and third in 2005.