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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Date published:
October 02, 2012, 1:00 BST
  • UCI provides clarification regarding its case against Kimmage

    Paul Kimmage
    Article published:
    October 01, 2012, 21:30 BST
    Cycling News

    Limited to false accusations that defamed the UCI

    The UCI issued a statement today in which it sought to clarify its position regarding its current legal actions against journalist and former professional cyclist Paul Kimmage, the author of "Rough Ride" and an outspoken critic of cycling's governing body.

    It is believed that the UCI's legal actions against Kimmage stemmed from his work published in The Sunday Times newspaper, highlighted by his interview with Floyd Landis, as well as in L’Équipe, where an interview was published in which the Irishman criticized the UCI. In today's statement from the UCI, the governing body explained why it's seeking legal redress from Kimmage, and not from the newspapers The Sunday Times and L’Équipe.

    "The case against Mr Kimmage is limited to false accusations and does not concern other opinions of Mr Kimmage," read the UCI statement. "The case is based upon the protection of the personality rights. Under the applicable Swiss law such case is directed against the person who made the defamatory statements. In this case this person is Mr. Kimmage.

    "Mr. Kimmage had made false accusations that defamed the UCI and its Presidents, and which tarnished their integrity and reputation," said the UCI. "Mr. Kimmage is free to express and make public his opinions within the limits of the law and of the truth. False accusations are unacceptable and unlawful and the UCI will defend itself against all such accusations as any other citizen or entity has the right to do."

    In January of this year current UCI president Pat McQuaid, former president Hein Verbruggen and the governing body itself filed a claim for damages against Kimmage in a Swiss court. In a statement issued at that time, a spokesperson for the UCI told Cyclingnews, "Mr. McQuaid can not allow for him or the UCI to be called...

  • Allar crowned queen of USA criteriums

    Erica Allar (Ride Clean/
    Article published:
    October 01, 2012, 22:20 BST
    Laura Weislo

    Overall NCC and USA CRITS series wins caps season

    Erica Allar capped off her stellar season in the US criterium circuit by winning the USA CRITS series finale, the Tour of Vail, to secure the overall victory in the nine-race series and the team overall for her RideClean/ squad.

    The win follows her overall success in the inaugural year of USA Cycling's National Criterium Calendar (NCC), a 12-race series for women.

    It was a season-long effort for the 27-year-old, who resides in Tucson, Arizona and works with coach and partner Jame Carney.

    "The NCC overall victory was the brain child of Jame. We started the season March 10th with the USA CRITS Series, which is what our team was targeting."

    Allar got started with the USA CRITS series by winning the opening events in Delray Beach and coming second in her home town of Tucson at the Old Pueblo GP.

    It was her third place in the Presbyterian Hospital Invitational, one of three races that was part of both series, and then a victory at the Sunny King Criterium (NCC) that led her to believe in her chances for topping the two main criterium honours.

    "Winning the Sunny King Criterium in Anniston, Alabama ... I took over the lead and we realized the NCC overall win was not out of the question. My win against a full team of Optum riders set the stage for the remaining NCC calendar.

    "Once I was leading, barring crashes or mechanical problems, our strategy to win the overall was to have much more consistency in my racing and results this year than any year before. I was able to do that ... which ultimately earned enough points for the NCC win."

    Crediting her off-season training and Carney's tactical knowledge, Allar was able to finish on the podium in 14 of the...

  • Hitec Products sign Neylan, Ratto for 2013

    Rachel Neylan (Australia) on the podium to receive her silver medal.
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 0:04 BST
    Jane Aubrey

    Worlds silver medalist eyes Australian titles, Rio 2016

    Norwegian-based outfit Hitec Products has announced the signing of Australia's Rachel Neylan (ABUS Nutrizzion) and Italy's Rossella Ratto (Verinlegno-Fabiano) as they team re-builds following the departure of Swedish champion Emma Johansson.

    Neylan is on a high following her silver medal effort from the 2012 UCI Road World Championships in Limburg, where she soloed across the line behind Dutchwoman Marianne Vos after riding in the definitive breakaway of the race.

    "Hitec is an organically grown team which I have a great deal of respect for," Neylan explained having finalised the deal over the weekend after considering her options. "They are professional, consistent, have a solid race program and good directorship. These are all important elements for a successful team."

    Racing on her own from mid-year Neylan took herself to altitude camp and formulated her own program based on guest rides in 1.2 and 2.2-ranked events. Throughout August and September, Neylan planned three race trips – first to Belgium and then the Trophée d'Or Féminin and l‘Ardeche where she finished fourth overall and led to her selection for the Australian team for the world championships.

    "The current situation with women's cycling internationally is quite difficult with many low budget teams trying to run full UCI race programs," Neylan said. "Everyone has their challenges and it's not easy for many women, I wasn't the only one with adverse circumstances. In saying that, I am very proud to have overcome those difficulties this year."

    With her immediate future secured, Neylan can go about enjoying her off-season and...

  • Contador looking forward to vacation

    Alberto Contador (Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) on the podium
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 2:04 BST
    Cycling News

    Grand Tour champion off the bike until mid-November

    Even though Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank) has only had two months of competition this year due to his doping suspension, the 2012 Vuelta a España winner is looking forward to take some rest following his last race, the Giro di Lombardia this Saturday. The Spaniard took part in the Giro d'Italia presentation in Milan on Sunday, then flew home to recover from what has still been a long year for him.

    "It was a season without a lot of racing days, but they were very concentrated, and with a lot of really hard training days. This year wore me out, physically as well as psychologically," Contador stated.

    At the same time, the results he was able to score since returning to competition at the beginning of August "couldn't have been better. I'm very, very happy. I came back at the Eneco Tour, a race that is 'anti-Alberto', so to speak: completely flat. I still managed to finish fourth and I'm very happy with that result. In the Vuelta, I achieved what I wanted after a very hard fight. It was a very beautiful race this year and I think it was good for everyone.

    "Then, the worlds were normal even though I had good sensations and I was a protagonist. Finally, I can't ask for anything more after this week in Italy and after having spent so many months without competition," Contador added.

    Now, the Spaniard was looking very much forward to his holidays. "From now on, I will rest and disconnect a bit from the bike. I need to give my body and my head some rest. until the next team meeting, which will be mid-November on the island of Gran Canaria, I will not touch the bike at all."

  • Surgery required for Vanmarcke after fall in Franco Belge

    Sep Vanmarcke is a big star in Belgium now
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 4:43 BST
    Cycling News

    Belgian yet to announce team for 2013

    Sep Vanmarcke (Garmin-Sharp) has undergone successful surgery for a broken collarbone sustained in a crash during stage 2 at Tour de Wallonie Picarde - Circuit Franco-Belge. The Belgian sent out a message to his Twitter followers shortly after his fall in the four-day race letting them know he was now a real professional.

    "They say "you can only say you're a real cyclist, if you once broke your collarbone." Well, guess I am one... Should I be proud now??," he said.

    Vanmarcke was barely off the operating table before he sent out a message and photo proudly displaying his scar. The Belgian had been part of the stage 1 breakaway at Franco Belge that contained eventual winner Jürgen Roelandts and was sitting eighth overall when he went down.

    "Operation succeed! Thanks for all support!" Vanmarcke said via Twitter.

    Vanmarcke became an overnight hero in Belgium when he out-sprinted Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma - Quickstep) in the finale of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad to take the biggest win of his career. The 24-year-old demonstrated great improvement from the following season as he went on to register top-ten placings in Dwars door Vlaanderen - Waregem and E3 Prijs Vlaanderen - Harelbeke.

    The Garmin-Sharp rider is yet to announce his team for the coming season with speculation circulating that he had already signed an agreement with RadioShack-Nissan. However, the developing spring classics Belgian has allegedly...

  • Sánchez leads Euskaltel-Euskadi at Tour of Beijing

    Samuel Sanchez seems even more pleased than Urtasun
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 6:44 BST
    Cycling News

    Txurukka, Velasco line-up for Basque team for final time

    Samuel Sánchez heads a strong Euskaltel-Euskadi line up at the Tour of Beijing next week.

    The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games gold medallist said that he was excited to be heading back to China, his happy hunting ground.

    "Last year was very special to be back in Beijing and compete on the roads that led me to conquer the most important achievement for an athlete, a gold medal at the Olympic Games," Sánchez said.

    "This season we are back again with enthusiasm and to put on a great show for the fans and to encourage more people to go cycling.

    "Winning is always difficult, but we will fight to get it."

    Joining Sánchez will be multiple stage winner at the Vuelta a España Igor Anton, off the back of his top 10 overall performance at the last grand tour of the season.

    "Last year was the debut of the race and I was able to win the mountains classification," Anton said.

    "After the Tour of Spain and Italian classics, I have a good shape and am motivated and eager to see if we can put a nice finishing touch on the season finale."

    Euskaltel-Euskadi will also race with Ivan Velasco, Amets Txurruka, Gorka Verdugo, Pello Bilbao and Mikel Landa. Sports director Iñaki Isasi said he believes the team can play a "leading role" in the five-stage race which brings the UCI World Tour to a close.

    "Samuel Sánchez has the quality and experience to be one of the leading men of the race and Igor Antón and Mikel Nieve are two other talented riders who aspire to win," he said.

    It will be the final race for both Velasco and Txurruka in Euskaltel-Euskadi colours with the riders reportedly...

  • Stapleton for Cavendish moving to Omega Pharma

    Stage 3 winner Mark Cavendish (Sky) at the post-race press conference.
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 8:20 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Ex-Highroad boss has no hard feelings

    Mark Cavendish’s former team boss, Bob Stapleton, has stated that the 2011 world champion should move to Omega Pharma-Quick Step, and in doing so, call time on his career at Team Sky.

    Stapleton managed Cavendish at Highroad from 2008 until the end of the 2011 season. It was a period of unprecedented success for both team and rider, with Cavendish winning over 30 grand tour stages, Milan-San Remo and the points jersey at the Tour de France.

    However, Cavendish moved to Sky at end of the 2011 season. The move coincided with the end of Stapleton’s HTC-Highroad team, as unable to find a financial backer willing to provide the clout needed to maintain a highly competitive WorldTour team, Stapleton was forced to close operations.

    "It’s in his best interests to join Quick Step and work with people he knows and respects," Stapleton told Cyclingnews.

    While a host of teams have been linked to Cavendish’s signature in the past few months Omega Pharma looks the most likely home. Fuelled by Czech financial resources and comprised of a number of Cavendish’s ex-HTC teammates, the Belgian squad offers Cavendish something that Sky can’t match: a leadership role at the Tour de France. With Rolf Aldag – another Highroad success - also in contention to move to the team, Staplenton believes that the set up is ideal for the British sprinter to flourish.

    "I think Aldag makes a big difference. I think Cav has tremendous respect for Aldag. It makes sense, it’s just a question about something giving on the buyout but I think they can resolve that. I think it will be a bit of a re-birth for Cavendish and a lot...

  • Ledanois joins BMC as directeur sportif

    The BMC team on the podium after narrowly missing out to Omega Pharma - Quick Step
    Article published:
    October 02, 2012, 9:32 BST
    Cycling News

    Frenchman moves on after five years at Movistar

    Yvon Ledanois will join BMC Racing Team as an assistant sport director, the team has announced. The former pro has worked as a directeur sportif at Caisse d'Epargne/Movistar since 2008.

    Ledanois rode from 1990 to 2001 for a number of teams.  His biggest success was winning a stage at the Vuelta a Espana in 1997.

    The 43-year-old said that he was looking forward to the new challenge. "I took this as a great opportunity, he said in a BMC press release. “I hope to bring my experience for the benefit of the team and it can be in combination with John (Lelangue)  and joining directors Max Sciandri and Fabio Baldato, whom I have known since our own racing days. I sincerely believe that there is a huge potential in the team to make great results in the Tour de France and other races and I'm excited about this new adventure."

    Team manager Jim Ochowicz, who was "pleased" that Ledanois was joining the team, said that the Frenchman would work closely with  Lelangue and direct the team in a number of one-week stage races, as well as at the Vuelta a España.

    "Yvon is already an experienced sport director and he's been with Caisse d’Epargne and Movistar in many stage races," Lelangue said. "He's also got a lot of experience with Spanish cycling and those races and riders, especially the WorldTour calendar races in Spain like Cataluyna, País Vasco and the Vuelta. He will also be working with me on some of the French races, naturally, because he is French."