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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Date published:
September 21, 2010, 1:00 BST
  • Velits gives HTC-Columbia its first grand tour podium

    Peter Velits (Team HTC-Columbia) third overall
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 0:17 BST
    Cycling News

    Slovakian all-rounder aims for top 10 at Tour de France

    Bob Stapleton's HTC-Columbia team has been the most successful in terms of number of victories in pro cycling since the American businessman entered the sport, but they never enjoyed a final podium finish in a grand tour until Peter Velits accompanied Vincenzo Nibali and Ezequiel Mosquera on the Vuelta a Espana podium on Sunday in Madrid.

    The 25-year-old Slovakian wasn't expected to be the first HTC-Columbia rider to do so but his consistency in the mountains and a brilliant win in the time trial boosted his final result.

    "I also didn't expect to do so well but I'm extremely satisfied although it's possible that I would have been fighting for the overall victory if I didn't lose time in Cotobello," Velits told Cyclingnews at the end of Vuelta.

    "I have no regrets because every day at the Vuelta I have given my best and I'm more than happy to finish third."

    At the beginning of the race, directeur sportif Tristan Hoffmann warned: "We came to the Vuelta to win stages with Mark Cavendish but also to prepare for the future and build up riders like Peter Velits and Tejay van Garderen as GC riders," he said

    "By the end of the Vuelta, we'll know if they can become grand tour riders." It's now clear that both Velits and Van Garderen are the future of HTC-Columbia for the grand tours as Michael Rogers is leaving the American outfit at the end of the year.

    Van Garderen finished the Vuelta in 35th place but this was his first grand tour in his first year as a professional. "I'm very happy to make it to Madrid," Van Garderen said as he reached the Spanish capital. "I was in the top 15 for the first two weeks but I had a bad day in Asturias and a stomach bug the next day. For my future, it's very important to get to Madrid. In a couple more years, I can fight for victory in these races, I hope."

    HTC-Columbia showed its developing talent not only at the Tour of Spain, but also at the championship of Flanders where...

  • Zabriskie, Farrar top names for USA world championship team

    Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) on the podium
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 0:22 BST
    Cycling News

    Olds, Stevens and Neben lead women's charge

    David Zabriskie and sprinter Tyler Farrar will be the USA's top contenders for the 2010 UCI Road World Championships in Melbourne, Australia, which begin at the end of this month.

    Farrar is coming off a successful Tour of Spain where he won two stages, including the final sprint in Madrid where he topped British star Mark Cavendish. He will be supported for the road race by his Garmin-Transitions teammates Zabriskie, Christian Vande Velde, Danny Pate and Tom Peterson as well as HTC-Columbia's Craig Lewis and Tejay Van Garderen, RadioShack's Jason McCartney and Cervelo's Ted King.

    It is perhaps the most powerful squad the USA has assembled for the world championships in recent memory, and the country will be equally well represented in the men's espoir and elite women's races.

    “We are sending three talented teams to Melbourne,” said USA Cycling V.P. of Athletics Jim Miller. “We are confident in each and every one of these athletes and believe each of the teams will be a factor in the outcome at these World Championships.”

    Zabriskie and Van Garderen will also compete in the time trial.

    In the women's team, Giro Donne champion Mara Abbott will not be joining Team USA in Australia, having declined the invitation due to illness.

    The team will be led for the time trial by 2008 Time Trial World Champion Amber Neben and HTC-Columbia stand-out Evelyn Stevens, the reigning national champion.

    Pan American champion Shelley Olds  (Peanut Butter & CO TWENTY 12) will join Stevens and Neben for the road race along with Amanda Miller (Team TIBCO), Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Colavita-Baci p/b Cooking Light), Katheryn Mattis (Webcor) and Carmen Small (Colavita-Baci p/b Cooking Light).

    The U23 men's field will be led by a pair of new US Professional Road Champions: Ben King, the road race champion and his Trek-Livestrong teammate and time trial champion Taylor Phinney. Also...

  • Tech news: Deda goes even more oversized

    Dedacciai's carbon Cross frame is light with a claimed weight of just 1,050g (size M) and also includes a flattened top tube underside for easier shouldering.
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 5:53 BST
    James Huang, technical editor

    Dedacciai adds more frame models for 2011

    Bigger is better in the Deda camp these days as the Italian component maker has introduced a 35mm-diameter handlebar and stem system that is claimed to offer a 50 percent increase in bending stiffness over its standard 31.7mm offerings.

    But isn't 35mm too big, you say? Perhaps, but not when you consider the finished diameter of a 31.7mm bar when handlebar tape is taken into account and the fact that the new M35 is intended to be unwrapped up top.

    Even so, some riders will still prefer the additional grip and cushioning of bar tape and the extra stiffness could prove too punishing for slighter riders or on rough roads, though this is just the sort of thing that should appeal to sprinters in particular.

    In addition, Deda has managed to increase the clamp diameter without adding much of a weight penalty. As compared to a comparable 31.7mm-diameter Presa and Zero100 bar and stem, the Trentacinque stem is only 26g heavier (claimed weight of 136g for a 110mm extension) and the M35 is actually 4g lighter (210g for a 42cm).

    Whether or not the new size will gain wide acceptance is another question entirely but if nothing else, it presents yet another option for those that are looking for that sort of thing and in all fairness, Deda isn't introducing it as a wholesale replacement for the current oversized standard.

    In contrast, Deda's Vincente stem concept was decidedly more radical with a unique internal-external steerer clamp that's claimed to be gentler on carbon tubes while also being more secure than traditional setups. Separate aluminum clamps and titanium hardware keeps the Vincente pretty light, too, at a claimed weight of just 137g.

    Other new component offerings occupy more value-oriented segments of the market and include the RHM01 (round cross-section) and RHM02 (aero cross-section) aluminum road handlebars, the Quattro2 and Zero1 forged aluminum oversized stems, and RS01 and RS02 two-bolt aluminum seatposts.

  • Bianchi to sponsor Androni Giocattoli in 2011

    Bianchi product manager Angelo Lecchi, Bianchi CEO Bob Ippolito, Gianni Savio, Felice Gimondi and Marco Bellini.
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 9:19 BST
    Cycling News

    Italian company adds another Pro Continental squad

    Italian bike manufacturer Bianchi has signed a one-year deal - with option for a second - with the Androni Giocattoli team to supply the new Oltre model in 2011.

    The agreement was finalised in Bianchi's historical factory in Treviglio, Bergamo, late last week, as Bianchi CEO Bob Ippolito met with Androni Giocattoli general manager Gianni Savio.

    Androni Giocattoli sports director Marco Bellini and the legendary Felice Gimondi plus Bianchi product manager Angelo Lecchi were also in attendance (pictured right).

    "We are proud of this new partnership for 2011 with Gianni Savio and Marco Bellini," said Ippolito. "They have a long and successful history in professional cycling and we look forward to a prosperous relationship.

    "We believe the team will help us to develop and improve our products through close collaboration with Bianchi Product Managers and Engineers. The riders, including talented Francesco Ginanni, will be provided with the new Oltre model, the flagship of the HoC collection, and we are very happy they will be the first to use this new frame."

    Bianchi has been sponsoring the Italian Pro Continental Ceramica Flaminia squad for the past two seasons, having also supplied bikes to teams such as Alessio, Barloworld and Liquigas in the past.

    Savio, whose team has been riding Guerciotti bikes for several seasons was evidently pleased with the new agreement: "Bianchi is definitely one of the most prestigious brands in the sport. When you think of Bianchi your mind goes to Fausto Coppi, Felice Gimondi and Marco Pantani, to name a few. That's why it's a privilege for our team to ride the Celeste bikes and the Oltre model in particular."

  • Mosquera confirmed to Vacansoleil for two years

    Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia)
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 9:58 BST
    Cycling News

    Spanish climber to be co-captain with Ricco in the grand tours

    The Vacansoleil team has confirmed that Spain’s Ezequiel Mosquera has signed a two-year contract with the team as it continues to strengthen it’s line-up in the hope of securing a ProTour licence for 2011.

    Mosquera finished second overall in the Vuelta after a tense duel with eventual winner Vincenzo Nibali. He will join Riccardo Riccò as the team’s leader for the major stage races.

    “We are aiming for the ProTour and Mosquera is an exceptional rider who can achieve top-ten results in grand tours, his results could even improve,” Vacansoleil team manager Daan Luijkx said in a statement.

    “You can see Mosquera is still getting better and better and his ambition shows by his effort to improve his time trialing. Besides that he will also get us results I believe his role as a guide in Spanish races will also be very important. Next year we will have several young Dutch and Belgium riders for stage races. To have a rider in the team who knows the races, speaks the language and is capable of passing his experience on is very important for our team.”

    Mosquera waited until after finishing the Vuelta to confirm his move to Vacansoleil.

    “I wanted to join a big team where everyone gets his own chance. Vacansoleil impressed in the Vuelta in 2009 and other Spanish races and I took my decision pretty quickly,” he said.

    “I am looking forward to the co-operation and want to get results and share my experience with the young riders. I see a lot of talent in the Vacansoleil team and when asked if I wanted to take the challenge I gave a clear yes. Besides the fact that the Spanish races are important for me I also want to look what my limits are in other European races.”

    Directeur sportif Hilaire Van Der Schueren told the Belga news agency that Mosquera would give the Vacansoleil team “a clear role to play in the major stage races.”

  • Vuelta a España Review

    The final 2010 Vuelta a Espana podium: Ezequiel Mosquera, Vincenzo Nibali and Peter Velits.
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 10:57 BST
    Barry Ryan

    Relive all the action with our exclusive photo gallery

    The battle for the Vuelta a España’s red jersey ultimately came down to a head-to-head battle between two men on the final climb of the race, as Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Doimo) sealed victory over Ezequiel Mosquera (Xacobeo Galicia) with a gritty and intelligent display atop Bola del Mundo on Saturday. But while those last three steep kilometres provided the race’s dramatic denouement, the full story of the Italian’s final 41-second lead was three weeks long and involved a wider supporting cast.

    Igor Anton (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Joaquin Rodriguez (Katusha) were worthy wearers of the red jersey, while Peter Velits (HTC-Columbia), Nicolas Roche (AG2R) and Fränk Schleck (Saxo Bank) battled hard to stay with the very best climbers. David Moncoutié (Cofidis) also captured a third consecutive mountains title with an intelligent ride.

    Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) found his sprinting legs a week into the race and took home his first points jersey after some fierce battles with fellow stage winners Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions), Thor Hushovd (Cervélo) and Alessandro Petacchi (Lampre-Farnese Vini). Meanwhile, Saxo Bank duo Andy Schleck and Stuart O’Grady ensured that even the rest day provided emotion at this dramatic Vuelta.

    The race began with a spectacular nocturnal team time trial in Seville and the opening days of the race were marked by soaring temperatures in Andalucia. It was a man from northern climes, Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto), who coped best with the conditions early on, and he raced into the overall lead with a spectacular stage-winning effort in Malaga. The Belgian would proceed to offer periodic demonstrations of his wonderful form as he...

  • Enrico Rossi suspended by Flaminia after police raid in Italy

    Enrico Rossi (Ceramica Flaminia) has been suspended by his team.
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 13:08 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Operation Cobra-Red sparks arrest of Ricco's brother in law

    The Ceramica Flaminia team has suspended Enrico Rossi after the Italian rider was arrested during a police operation carried out by the NAS anti-drugs squad across central Italy.

    According to reports in Gazzetta dello Sport, a total of six people were arrested, including an amateur rider, a nurse and a pharmacist.

    Another 35 people are under investigation after police carried out 40 searches across central and northern Italy. Six of these are reported to be professional riders. Police suspect the group are involved in a drug-dealing ring that also includes gyms and thefts from hospitals.

    The investigation is being co-ordinated by police in Perugia and has been named 'Operation Cobra-Red. In Italian 'rosso' means red, while Cobra is Riccardo Riccò's nickname. He does not appear to be involved in the investigation.

    However Rossi is the brother of Riccò's partner Vania Rossi. She failed a test for the blood boosting drug CERA in January but her B sample analysis failed to confirm the positive. Riccò tested positive for CERA at the 2008 Tour de France but returned to racing this year. He rode with Enrico Rossi at the Ceramica Flaminia team until moving to the Vacansoleil team at the start of September.

    Rossi won the Dwars Door Drenthe race in Belgium this year and recently finished sixth in the Paris-Brussels race.

  • Gilbert, Pozzato and Freire head down under for world championships

    Cadel Evans (BMC) took third in one of his last races as world champion.
    Article published:
    September 21, 2010, 13:48 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Europeans riders face 23-hour flight to Australia

    With the start of the road race world championships just over a week away, European riders have begun the long the journey to Australia so they have time to recover from the 23-hour flight and jet lag.

    World champion Cadel Evans rode his last race in the rainbow jersey at the Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen in Belgium on Friday and is on his way to Canberra today to join up with his teammates from the Australia team for a training camp. Michael Rogers is also due to travel today from his home in northern Italy.

    The Italian team gathered near Varese on Monday and also fly to Australia today. Vuelta a Espana winner Vincenzo Nibali returned home to Tuscany from Madrid on Monday but only had a few hours to celebrate with his fans and change his suitcase before joining up with the rest of the Italian team.

    The Italian riders underwent anti-doping tests by the Italian Olympic Committee on Monday night and faced further tests by the Italian Cycling Federation on Tuesday morning.

    The three-rider British team is also set to leave today. Mark Cavendish, Jeremy Hunt and David Millar all rode the Vuelta and had just a day at home before their journey down under.

    The Belgian team will leave from Brussels on Wednesday but according to La Derniere Heure newspaper face an uncomfortable journey after the Belgian Cycling Federation booked them in economy class. Team leader Philippe Gilbert and Bjorn Leukemans apparently paid an extra 2000 Euro to fly business to rest their legs.

    Germany, Russia and the Netherlands look set to be the last teams to leave Europe for Australia. The Elite men's road race team s will leave on Friday, just nine days before the road race on Sunday October 3.