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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Date published:
September 11, 2012, 1:00 BST
  • Demaret retires at 28

    Jean-Eudes Demaret (Cofidis) celebrates his victory.
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 0:55 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Cofidis rider hangs up his bike following Crohn's disease

    French team Cofidis has lost two of its riders to retirement this week-end: David Moncoutié, who ended his final Vuelta a España in Madrid on Sunday, and Jean-Eudes Demaret, finished the last race of his career at the GP Fourmies. Demaret, although only aged 28, has also decided to hang up his bike.

    "GP Fourmies, last race of my career. My head is ready to move on to something else, even if I still have one year left with Cofidis," the Frenchman tweeted on Sunday.

    Demaret has stage victories at the Tour de Picardie, Etoile de Bessèges and Circuit de la Sarthe to his name, but he contracted Crohn's disease, a chronic inflammation of the bowels, following his participation in the Tropical Amissa Bongo in 2010. This ended his season, and Demaret's convalescence and come-back to the sport was difficult. Nevertheless, he returned to a win at Estonian one-day race SEB Tartu Grand Prix (1.1) at the end of May 2011.

  • Van Poppel credits teammates for gold jersey at Tour of Britain

    Boy Van Poppel (United Healthcare) on the podium at Tour of Britain
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 2:41 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Sixth time on the podium for Dutchman in 2012

    Knowing he was just four seconds off the overall lead after the opening stage of the Tour of Britain, Boy van Poppel (UnitedHealthcare) was motivated for a good placing on Stage 2. The Dutch sprinter took third in Knowsley behind winner Leigh Howard (Orica-GreenEdge) and Mark Cavendish (Sky) moving him into the gold jersey.

    "I did everything I could to try and win today," said van Poppel. "The team helped me... saving my energy during the day, and they brought me into an ideal position to the sprint. I managed to take 3rd today, which was enough to secure the overall lead. I'm happy about the result and happy to have earned this for my teammates."

    UnitedHealthcare team director Hendrik Redant said that they team had done their best to control the breaks, but despite their best efforts, no rider from the blue train could get ahead of the peloton. The ultimate goal of the stage for the team however, was to set up van Poppel for the final sprint.

    "The boys were working well for van Poppel and kept him in the front of the race so he could preserve his power for the sprint," he explained. "Robert Förster took Boy to the front of the group in the final hectometers of the race, enabling Boy to sprint in ideal circumstances. He did a great job in the sprint and managed to get 3rd place."

    Monday's result was van Poppel's sixth time on the podium this season, with runner-up placings at Singapore's OCBC Criterium, Nokere Koerse, Driedaagse van De Panne, Volta a Portugal and Sunday's 1st stage of the Tour of Britain.

     

  • Sheryl Crow: No one trained harder than Armstrong

    Waiting outside doping control is something Armstrong's partner Sheryl Crow had to get used to
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 3:34 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Former fiancée reacts to USADA penalties

    Sheryl Crow has opened up about her reaction to former fiancée Lance Armstrong being banned for life and stripped of all his results dating back to 1998, including his seven Tour de France titles.

    Crow and Armstrong began their three-year relationship in 2003, was a regular at his races including the Tour de France in 2004 and 2005

    "I haven't seen Lance in a few years but it was hard," the nine-time Grammy-winner said on American journalist Katie Couric's new talk show. "You know, I... He's somebody that I really care about."

    Earlier this month, the New York Daily News claimed that Crow, "provided information" to the investigators. It is not known what she may have said, or whether the USADA has contacted her for its investigation. In Tyler Hamilton's expose book, a footnote cites a "source close to the investigation" saying that Crow had been subpoenaed.

    Jeff Novitzky, who ran the government investigation, did not comment on the story, nor did attorneys for Crow or Armstrong. 

    The federal investigation was closed in February 2012, taking no action.

    She lived with him at the apartment in Girona, Spain, which former teammates "have described as a distribution point for performance-enhancing drugs and a place to store bags of blood before re-infusing it at big races," according to the newspaper. She also flew with him on his private jet, which former teammates Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton "have alleged were critical to doping schemes."

    Throughout Monday's...

  • Pozzato set to face CONI over Ferrari relationship

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    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 4:48 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Italian to return to WorldTour next year

    Filippo Pozzato will once again face the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) at 1045am Tuesday after admitting to receiving training programs from the controversial and banned Dr Michele Ferrari from 2005 to 2009. Pozzato has already stood before CONI in late June with the Committee set to request a formal ban.

    Pozzato has already been officially charged and the Farnese Vini-Selle Italia rider could receive a one-year ban from competition, as stated by the Italian Cycling Federation (FCI).

    The FCI forbids all Italian UCI license holders from consulting with the Ferrari, who received a life ban in 2002. Pozzato admitted to working with the doctor after reports by La Repubblica of intercepted phone conversations where Pozzato allegedly requests the services of Ferrari.

    "If you go to see him in his own house, then you're responsible," Pozzato is alleged to have said. "You don't have a gun pointed to your head. I wanted to go to Ferrari. We're grown-ups aren't we?"

    After being sidelined from the London Olympic Games and also missing out on being selected for the upcoming UCI Road World Championships due to his involvement with Ferrari, Pozzato will most likely return to competition next season - with a ProTeam.

    According to

  • Contador: In my mind I’ve won seven grand tours

    Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank) crosses the line in Madrid to win the 2012 Vuelta
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 6:56 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Spaniard believes the "other number appears on paper"

    Crossing the line at the completion of stage 21 at the Vuelta a España, overall race winner Alberto Contador (Saxo Bank – Tinkoff Bank) threw his arms in the air. He gestured the number seven with his hands, signifying his seventh grand tour victory.

    The number however, is not technically correct. The Spaniard has, on paper, five grand tour wins to his name after he was stripped of the 2010 Tour de France and 2011 Giro d’Italia titles following his positive test for clenbuterol during the 2010 Tour.

    Contador believes it’s the memory of seven overall wins that matters and not what the record books show. Before his positive test at the 2010 Tour, Contador was the winner of the Tour de France in 2007, 2009 and 2010, the Giro d’Italia in 2008 and 2011 and finally the Vuelta a España in 2008 and 2012.

    "Mentally, it is the image of the grand tours that I won," said Contador to La Dernière Heure.

    While Contador was stripped of all his results following his positive test at the 2010 Tour and received a two-year ban, he ultimately served just six-month away from competition as his suspension was back dated. The Spaniard returned to competition with Saxo Bank - Tinkoff at the Eneco Tour.

    Contador has consistently denied any wrong doing regarding his...

  • Albasini to lead Switzerland at World Championships in Valkenburg

    Switzerland's Michael Albasini
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 8:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Swiss Cycling announce long list for men's road race

    With former time trial world champion Fabian Cancellara (RadioShack-Nissan) announcing he was ending his season shortly after the Olympic Games and Martin Elmiger (Ag2r La Mondiale) still recovering from his crash sustained at Vattenfall Cyclassics, the pressure will rest on Michael Albasini to deliver a result for his Swiss team in the road race at the World Championships in Valkenburg, The Netherlands.

    Albasini has already shown his leadership qualities this year after winning the overall at the Volta a Catalunya in March. The 31-year-old won the opening stage and lead the race from start to finish, picking up his win on stage 2. His most recent victory was at Tour de Suisse before heading to the Tour de France where, despite a number of gutsy efforts in breakaways, he failed to win a stage.

    The Swiss Federation has named four of the six who will represent Switzerland at the UCI Road World Championships. The BMC Racing Team will see two of their riders represented with Steve Morabito and Michael Schär while Gregory Rast (RadioShack-Nissan) has also been confirmed.

    The final two spots will be selected from...

  • Sky add Lopez to roster for 2013 season

    David Lopez (Movistar)
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 9:12 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Spanish climber leaving Movistar after six years with Unzue

    David Lopez, currently riding for the Movistar team, will join Sky Procycling on a two-year contract, according to BiciCiclismo. The 31-year-old has spent his entire career, which began in 2003, with Spanish teams.

    Lopez has chosen to part ways after spending six years with the team managed by Eusebio Unzue. It was no doubt a difficult decision for Lopez after such a long-standing relationship.

    "After the rider was not included in Movistar’s plans for the Giro, Tour and Vuelta, he now hopes to relaunch his career," noted BiciCiclismo.

    The 2010 Vuelta A España stage winner was not selected for his team’s roster at the recently finished Vuelta, adding to the disappointment of failing to make the cut at both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France.

    Lopez has just two professional victories to his name, having scored his first at the 2007 Deutschland Tour. However, his role will be primarily as a domestique at his new Sky team. His squad for the coming season will hope to capitalise on the climbing ability he displayed earlier in his career when he finished 14th overall at the 2007 Vuelta.

    Joining Lopez as newcomers to the British team are previously announced 2012 Vuelta stage winner Dario Cataldo (Omega Pharma - Quickstep) and current teammate Vasili Kiryienka.

  • Rodriguez focusing on Grand Tour win in 2013

    Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) put time into Valverde and Contador on the Bola del Mundo, but not enough to change the general classification.
    Article published:
    September 11, 2012, 11:22 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    End-of-season goals include Worlds and overall WorldTour victory

    Joaquim 'Purito' Rodríguez has one clear objective for the coming season: to finally claim his first Grand Tour win. To that end, the Katusha rider has been assured the total support of his squad, where he is the main leader for three-week races.

    Rodriguez' final goals for 2012 include the victory at the World Championships in two weeks, as well as the overall UCI WorldTour ranking. His good results over the 2012 season have placed him second behind current leader Bradley Wiggins (Sky).

    The two-time Grand Tour podium finisher will choose his targets carefully next year. "I have to look at the three itineraries and then focus on either Giro, Tour or Vuelta," he told Spanish news agency EFE on Monday. "I only have to win one of those races. However, I think it will be difficult to target the Tour de France but it depends on the parcours. I've improved in the time trial but I'm not a specialist. The time trial in the Vuelta had a climb and so the time loss was less significant."

    The 33-year-old has made continuous progress in the world's biggest stage races over the last few years, winning a total of ten stages as well as one Classic, the Flèche Wallonne this year. The Spaniard confirmed that the next logical step on his palmarès would be a Grand Tour victory. "It's my dream, it's what I work towards. In the Giro, I lost by a hair, and in the Vuelta it was because of one stage that didn't go well but I had the level to win. I'm eager to win a Grand Tour, going for the one that will suit my abilities best and fight for it," he added.

    As a consequence, he will continue to enjoy full support of his team, and he's now in a position to claim optimal conditions - including his domestiques. "When...