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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Date published:
May 28, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Hesjedal targets Tour de France after Giro disappointment

    Defending Giro champion Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) leads an elite chase group in pursuit of Luca Paolini.
    Article published:
    May 27, 2013, 18:23 BST
    Cycling News

    Garmin-Sharp rider to race Tour de Suisse

    Ryder Hesjedal has confirmed that he will compete in next month’s Tour de Suisse before taking on the Tour de France, a race in which he has pinpointed a podium place as a major objective.

    The Canadian abandoned the Giro d’Italia in the second week of racing after coming down with a respiratory virus and although he missed out on defending his 2012 title, he believes that he can regain his form and top level fitness for July’s Tour de France.

    “I’m back training on the bike now and feeling pretty good,” he told Cyclingnews a day after watching Vincenzo Nibali win the Giro.

    Until succumbing to illness, Hesjedal appeared as a genuine contender for Giro glory. The time he lost in the team time trial in Naples was partly rescued by an aggressive ride to Marina di Ascea on stage three and heading into the individual time trial, he lay in third place.

    “It was a virus that was going around and that then turned into respiratory infection. I didn’t really see any symptoms until after the individual time trial, but there wasn’t much we could do other than hope for the best. The way I felt after the next stage wasn’t right. I could just see it taking more and more effect and even after the first rest day it was affecting my body and you could see that in the race. Unfortunately that’s how the Giro played out for me.”

    From his base in Girona, as the Giro peloton tackled the atrocious weather and the brutal mountains of the Giro, Hesjedal rested and slowly recovered.

    “I watched the race. I’m a fan of racing, so I’d especially watch when I was just at home and more or less sitting on...

  • 2014 Giro d'Italia could include the Mortirolo but not Sicily

    The Giro d'Italia trophy on display in Cordenons prior to the start of stage 10
    Article published:
    May 27, 2013, 19:54 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Bari likely to host Italian start after Eire stages

    The 2013 Giro d'Italia has only just ended, but race organiser RCS Sport has revealed that the 2014 route is virtually decided with only some final details needed to finalised the three-week course.

    The full route will be unveiled at the end of the season, but rumours about possible stage locations and key climbs are already circulating.

    RCS Sport has already announced that the 2014 Giro d'Italia, edition number 98, will start in Belfast, in Northern Ireland. The city will host two stages, with another from Armagh to Dublin, before the whole race transfer by air back to Italy after

    With UCI rules no longer permitting a rest day so early in a Grand Tour, the riders and the whole Giro d'Italia caravan will return to Italy by plane.

    According to the Tuttosport newspaper, the historic rival of Gazzetta dello Sport, that owns the Giro d'Italia, the 2014 Giro will restart in the very south of the country, in Bari, probably with a team time trial to allow the riders to recover from the three-hour flight.

    The race route will then head north via Tuscany, with a stage expected in Gino Bartali's home town of Ponte a Ema near Florence, to celebrated the hundredth anniversary of the legendary rider's birth.

    Tuttosport claims that an individual time trial will be held between the wine towns of Barolo and Barbaresco near Turin, while the Jafferau and the steep Zoncolan climb could return to route in 2014.

    No Sicily, Milan finish unlikely

    Despite Vincenzo Nibali becoming the first Sicilian to ever win the Giro d'Italia, the 2014 race is unlikely to visit the island next year. The ferry trip to Ischia on stage two this year for the team time trial caused a lot of headaches...

  • Martin pleased with eight wins to date

    Tour of Belgium leader Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-QuickStep)
    Article published:
    May 27, 2013, 23:49 BST
    Cycling News

    OPQS rider repeated overall title in Tour of Belgium

    Tony Martin had to fight hard on la Redoute to defend his overall lead in the last stage of the Tour of Belgian, but he was able to counter Philippe Gilbert's attack and bring home the title for the second consecutive year. He credited both his Omega Pharma-QuickStep teammates and his own time trialing abilities for the success on the final day.

    “My team once again supported me perfectly,” he said on his website. “Until about 20 kilometers before the finish I was not once in the wind.”

    That gave him the power to chase Gilbert, when he attacked. The BMC rider had come into the final stage in fifth place, only 57 seconds down. “He really lit a rocke and opened a big hole,” Martin said. “But I though, even if it is 20, 30 or 40 meters, I can hold that or catch him.

    “Because of my time trial performance I had confidence in my form. In the end I was able to catch him. I simply rode my own rhythm. In the finale he signalled to me that he wouldn't attack me again because the time gap was too big. He wanted to go for the stage win.”

    It was Martin's eighth win this season, “a very good balance for May. I am so far satisfied.”

    The German world time trial champion will not rest on his laurels, though. On Sunday evening he traveled to Nice, with plans to continue on to Corsica. “There we will look at the first three Tour stages. We will also inspect the team time trial course.” He will be back to racing at the Criterium du Dauphine on Saturday.


  • Fränk Schleck hit by car while training

    Fränk Schleck shows off his injury, after being hit by car
    Article published:
    May 28, 2013, 1:30 BST
    Cycling News

    Superficial injuries for Luxembourger

    Fränk Schleck was hit by car whilst training, but was not seriously injured. He is currently training for his comeback after a doping suspension.

    “It will never get boring! Car running me over in early training ride. Outsch that hurts” he tweeted Monday morning, and posted a photo of his injury. He looked to have lost significant skin on his right buttock.

    Schleck tested positive for Xipamide during last year's Tour de France, and was given a one-year suspension, which expires the middle of July.

  • Huon Salmon-Genesys with best squad ever for Tour de Kumano

    Nathan Earle (Huon - Genesys) congratulated his stage win with guys
    Article published:
    May 28, 2013, 1:58 BST
    Alex Malone

    Australian outfit on a high after two victories at Tour of Japan

    Two stage wins and a new race record up the unrelenting Fujisan climb at the Tour of Japan far exceeded the expectations of Huon Salmon-Genesys Wealth Advisers squad with team director Andrew Christie-Johnston admitting the Australian outfit was a little out of its depth at the same race just 12 months ago.

    However, with a 2013 team roster heralded as the "strongest ever" before the line-up was officially announced it's not that surprising to see Australia's number-one domestic team battling with the best from the Asia Tour and with the Tour de Kumano coming up, the team will no doubt look to deliver again.

    The highly-demanding circuits featured at the Tour of Japan were "a bit above our level", according to Christie-Johnston when asked to look back at the race from 2012. In that edition Team Nippo dominated the field, taking home first and second on the general classification and three stages while the Tasmania outfit struggled to race at the level they have become accustomed to in the Australian National Road Series.

    "The toughness of Tour of Japan was still fresh in my memory from last year," Christie-Johnston told Cyclingnews. "The level of competition especially from one team in particular and the demanding circuits was just a bit above our level."

    Last year may not have panned out how the team hoped but this time Huon Salmon-Genesys fielded a five-man team capable of covering all bases in Japan and the same familiar names will stay on for Kumano.

    The Australian Continental squad delivered its first blow to the Nippo duo of eventual 2013 winner Fortunato Baliani and this year's Tour de Langkawi victor and Japan's...

  • Sutton: Wiggins needs to support a Froome-led Sky at Tour de France

    Chris Froome (Sky) wins the Tour de Romandie.
    Article published:
    May 28, 2013, 4:23 BST
    Cycling News

    Pair need to "forget the past," says performance advisor

    Team Sky's performance advisor, Shane Sutton has urged Bradley Wiggins to support Chris Froome in his bid for the 2013 Tour de France.

    Wiggins was forced to leave the Giro d'Italia through illness, saying he would aim "to being back to full strength for the Tour" which he won last season.

    In an interview with the Daily Mail, Sutton said that Froome, winner of the Tour of Oman, the Critérium International, and Tour of Romandie so far this year deserves to be the team's nominated leader for the French Grand Tour.

    "I think that, at this moment in time, you base it on the evidence before you and Froome will be the nominated rider," he said. "Bradley will just have to settle for a support role. Froome has won continually this year. I think just about every race he has ridden he has won. Brad hasn't had a win since last August so I think the team will very much be getting behind Chris, as Chris did with Brad last year."

    Leadership of the team for the Tour has been a source of speculation since Froome appeared to attack Wiggins during last year's edition of the race on Stage 11. Earlier this month, after Wiggins suggested he had aspirations for the Giro-Tour double, forcing Froome to issue a personal statement claiming that he was to be the leader in July and that he had the full backing of the team, Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford confirmed that the Grand Boucle was indeed for the Kenyan-born...

  • Morabito toughed out Giro d'Italia with broken hand

    Cadel Evans and Steve Morabito (BMC) head out for a easy ride around Valloire
    Article published:
    May 28, 2013, 6:41 BST
    Cycling News

    BMC rider made it to Brescia after crash on Stage 16

    Supporting his team captain Cadel Evans all the way to Brescia meant that Steve Morabito rode the final week of the Giro d'Italia nursing a broken bone in his hand. The BMC rider fought through the pain after crashing on Stage 16 and continued to race over the following 1,000-odd kilometers and five remaining stages to ensure he was there when Evans needed him.

    "I had a lot of pain, but I was focused on staying in the race because I knew that Cadel needed my help," said Morabito to Radsport-news at the end of the Italian grand tour.

    Evans would eventually ride across the finish line in Brescia and step onto the podium for third-overall, 5:52 behind the 2013 Giro champion Vincenzo Nibali while Morabito rode valiantly to round-out his race in 34th place - as the team's third-best finisher.

    Team doctor Max Testa reportedly informed the 30-year-old that surgery should not be required to heal the injury, his upcoming race schedule is not yet known.

    The Swiss rider was not part of the BMC Tour de France squad in 2012 but he was included in the team that piloted Evans to a historic first at the 2011 Tour when he became the first rider from Down Under to win the French three-week race. Morabito has never completed more than one grand tour each year since turning professional with Phonak in 2006 and with his bones still on the mend, one would expect the fourth-year BMC rider to skip this year's Grand Départ.


  • Uran says the best is still to come

    Rigoberto Uran (Sky)
    Article published:
    May 28, 2013, 10:02 BST
    Cycling News

    Colombian looks back at his Giro d'Italia and talks about his future

    Rigoberto Uran has admitted to being “quite surprised with what happened” at the Giro d'Italia, with the Team Sky rider, who finished second overall, saying that the key to his success was “having trust and confidence” in himself. The 26 year-old doesn't think that he has peaked as rider, saying “in a few years I will be at my best."

    Uran took over team leadership at Team Sky when Bradley Wiggins abandoned the race due to illness. There was no problem with his teammates following the change. “The boys were always very attentive. I was never neglected.”

    Uran revealed that is most difficult moment in the Giro d'Italia was during stage 14.

    “Uff, I suffered that day. It rained and rained. There was plenty of water for five hours and the stage was very difficult I felt tired, my legs were heavy but I couldn't stop pedaling. The cold and bad weather were another strong rival to defeat in this year's Giro.”

    His best day was “the one I won.” On the tenth stage to the Altopiano del Montasio he jumped from the group of favourites and soloed to victory.

    “I felt good, confident and managed to win. It was unforgettable. It was also my first stage win in one of the three Grand Tours and that made it even more emotional.”

    Uran says that he is still working to be at his very best but is patient.

    “Cycling is a sport of waiting, of patience. You have to keep working, to train well and see what comes. I am sure that what is coming is good, that the coming years will be better. The body takes time to ripen and then I have to take advantage of that,” he said.

    Uran is set to leave Team Sky in 2014, with Omega Pharma-Quick...