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First Edition Cycling News, Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Date published:
April 06, 2011, 1:00 BST
  • Team Type 1 secure wildcard invitation to Tour de Suisse

    Rubens Bertogliati (Team Type 1) has a wealth of experience.
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 14:20 BST
    Cycling News

    US-based team features Swiss time trial champion Bertogliati

    The Tour de Suisse has awarded a wild card invitation to Team Type 1 – Sanofi Aventis. The US-based team includes current Swiss national time trial champion Rubens Bertogliati.

    “It's a dream come true to ride a race in my home town and wearing the Swiss champion's jersey,” Bertogliati said on the official ace website.  “The Tour de Suisse is one of the most important races on the cycling calendar.”  It is a “great honour” for his team to be allowed to participate.

    Race sport director and former rider Beat Zberg was also pleased to have the team in the June race.  “Team Type 1 has outstanding riders and so can surely bring about a surprise or two.  We are of course also happy that they have a Swiss rider in Rubens Bertogliati.”

    “The participation in the Tour de Suisse is a further step for us in our global mission of showing people that they accomplish their dreams despite diabetes,” said team CEO and grounder Phil Southerland. 

    German-based Team NetApp, also a Professional Continental-ranked team, has also been awarded a wild-card invitation to the World Tour race.

  • Phinney ruled out for Paris-Roubaix

    Taylor Phinney shows off his US time trial champion's skinsuit
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 16:30 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Former U23 winner focuses on getting healthy after knee injury

    Taylor Phinney (BMC Racing Team) has been ruled out of Paris-Roubaix as he continues his rehabilitation from injury. The American had hoped to start his first senior Hell of the North but will remain in Italy and train. His team has not yet confirmed which race will mark his comeback, but it is hopeful that he will race again in the coming weeks.

    "He's definitely not doing Roubaix," team manager Jim Ochowicz told Cyclingnews.

    "There are number of issues, and he's not ready for the race and he's not raced on pave this year. He's preparing to get himself healthy and get himself back on track."

    Phinney been looking forward to competing in his first senior campaign on the cobbles and came into the year as the two-time Paris-Roubaix champion at the Under 23 level.

    However persistent knee troubles have disrupted his debut season. He started the Volta a Catalunya last month in the hope of finding his race legs but was forced to pull out. However Ochowicz told Cyclingnews that Phinney was now fit but needed race miles before embarking on a race as tough as Roubaix.

    "It's not time off the bike that he needs though, it's time on the bike. Hopefully he'll be back within this month but if he'd been fit then he would started. He's still got a lot of Roubaix outings to look forward to."

    Ochowicz also refused to rule out Phinney riding in this year's Tour de France.

    "Again we don't know it's too early to predict his schedule but there's been no commitments. We'll evaluate things over the coming weeks. we just want him back racing as soon as possible but we just don't want to rush things."

  • Colorado stage race gets a new name

    Riders might be able to take in this view from the prologue in Colorado Springs
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 17:33 BST
    Cycling News

    Quiznos Pro Challenge rebranded USA Pro Cycling Challenge

    The seven-day professional men's stage race to take place in Colorado this August has been renamed the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, removing sandwich chain Quiznos from the title spot.

    Quiznos will remain a sponsor at "the same level of involvement and participation", a press release stated, but the name was changed "in order to showcase the global scale of the event to a worldwide audience".

    In conjunction with the name change announcement, race organisers revealed an agreement with the NBC Sports Group to broadcast 25 hours of coverage over the race's seven days, including live coverage of the race's final stage.

    NBC will broadcast the race live for two hours on August 28, while Versus will cover 30 minutes of pre-race coverage and one hour of post-race coverage in addition to live event coverage throughout the entire competition.

    The USA Pro Cycling Challenge will kick off in Colorado Springs on August 22. Six ProTeams have already been announced: RadioShack, Liquigas-Cannondale, HTC-Highroad, Garmin-Cervélo, BMC Racing and Leopard-Trek along with four Professional Continental squads UnitedHealthcare, Team Type 1-Sanofi Aventis, Spidertech-C10 and Skil-Shimano.

  • Cancellara warns rivals to fasten seatbelts ahead of Paris-Roubaix

    Fabian Cancellara (Leopard Trek) was arguably the strongest rider in the race but finished third
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 19:00 BST
    Barry Ryan

    Swiss rider likens himself to gladiator

    Fabian Cancellara (Leopard Trek) has thrown down the gauntlet ahead of Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix and stated that his rivals know that they “must fasten their seatbelts” whenever he goes to the front.

    Still smarting from his third place finish at the Tour of Flanders, Cancellara explained that he attacked from distance on the Leberg in order to mark the history of the race. While the Swiss rider appeared to over-estimate his strength and was reeled back in at the foot of the Muur, impressively he still had the wherewithal to spark the winning move in the closing kilometres.

    “I wanted to do something perfect [at the Tour of Flanders],” Cancellara told Corriere della Sera. “It didn’t work out like that, I showed that I am human and maybe it’s better that way.”

    Cancellara claimed that the remainder of the Tour of Flanders field rode against him on Sunday, and damned winner Nick Nuyens (Saxo Bank-SunGard) with the faintest of praise for the manner of his triumph.

    “I’m very happy: there were fifty of them behind a gladiator,” Cancellara continued. “It was a spectacle and a double satisfaction: I lost by trying to win, the others rode only to make me lose. And in the end the one who was always in the wheels won. Congratulations to Nuyens, but for me [winning] like that has no value.”

    Although his hopes of winning the Flanders-Roubaix double for the second successive year have been dashed, Cancellara believes that he is the favourite to collect his third Hell of the North on Sunday.

    “In Flanders I was the only one of the big...

  • Bennati takes first victory of season at Circuit de la Sarthe

    Daniele Bennati (Leopard Trek) is fully color co-ordinated.
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 21:07 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Relief for Italian as he builds for Giro d'Italia

    Daniele Bennati (Leopard Trek) was relieved to have earned his first victory of the season in stage 1 of the Circuit de la Sarthe, eight days after his big disappointment at Gent-Wevelgem.

    "Second at Gent-Wevelgem is an important result but it was a big disappointment," Bennati told Cyclingnews in Saint-Mars-la-Jaille.

    "Tom Boonen wasn't stronger than me that day but I lost his wheel when Ian Stannard changed his lane. It's a pity because I could have won.

    "Milan-San Remo and Gent-Wevelgem were my two goals of the early part of the season," the 30-year-old Tuscan said. "But Milan-San Remo was too hard a race for a sprinter to win." Bennati finished 13th in Milan-San Remo, 27 seconds behind race winner Matt Goss.

    Gent-Wevelgem was the fifth of his second place finishes this year after being beaten by Heinrich Haussler and Mark Renshaw at the Tour of Qatar and Matt Goss and Theo Bos at the Tour of Oman. "For someone who is used to winning, losing sprints is stressful," Bennati said. "Winning became almost an obsession for me recently. But winning at any cost isn't a good thing. A sprinter also needs to be serene for winning. I hope today's victory is only the first one of a long list."

    Bennati might collect more victories in the four-day Circuit de la Sarthe. As the flat time trial in Angers is only 6.8km long, he's likely to keep the lead due to the time bonuses earned in the opening stage, just as his directeur sportif from Leopard-Trek Adriano Baffi did in 1996 at the same event under the colours of Mapei.

    "Since December, I...

  • Westra extends with Vacansoleil-DCM

    Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil-DCM) took the honours at the Classic Loire Atlantique.
    Article published:
    April 05, 2011, 23:01 BST
    Cycling News

    Dutch rider will not start Scheldeprijs

    Dutch rider Lieuwe Westra will not start the Scheldeprijs tomorrow due to an illness, but the 28-year-old winner of the Classic Loire Atlantique parlayed his recent string of good results into a contract extension with the Vacansoleil-DCM team.

    The team announced today that Westra will remain with the team through 2013.

    Westra came third overall in the Volta ao Algarve in February, and confirmed that result with a second place overall in the Driedaagse De Panne - Koksijde, just missing the overall win by six seconds to Sebastien Rosseler.

    However, he missed out on starting the Tour of Flanders after falling ill with a fever, and has not trained since last Saturday.

    "I am better, but still not great," he said, adding that he hopes to return for La Flèche Wallonne and Liège - Bastogne - Liège later this month.

    Vacansoleil-DCM will start the Scheldeprijs with sprinters Borut Bozic and Romain Feillu as well as Björn Leukemans, Stijn Devolder, Frederick Veuchelen, Gorik Gardeyn, Alberto Ongarato and Marcello Pavarin.

  • Video: Tyler Farrar on Scheldeprijs and Garmin-Cervelo's Classics campaign

    It's two wins in a row for Tyler Farrar (Garmin - Cervélo).
    Article published:
    April 06, 2011, 1:29 BST
    Daniel Benson

    American having his best ever spring

    Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo) will line-up at Scheldeprijs on Wednesday as the defending champion and one of the clear favourites for the win.

    The American has had a strong Spring, finishing on the podium in both Dwars door Vlaanderen and Gent-Wevelgem, while also taking 11th in the Tour of Flanders.

    Scheldeprijs, however, offers Garmin-Cervelo perhaps their best opportunity to win a race during the Belgian cobbled Classics with only Wednesday’s race and Paris-Roubaix left on the calendar.

    “I won last year so I think I’m one of the favourites. I’m not the only favourite but I’ve done it before and I think I can do it again,” Farrar tells Cyclingnews in this exclusive video.

    Garmin-Cervelo were heavily-billed as one of the strongest teams for this season's Classics, but a combination of poor legs, bad luck and simply better rides has left them floundering Milan-San Remo and the Tour of Flanders.

    “If you believed what you read in December we were going to win every single Classic all year which wasn’t realistic. We had hoped to have done better as a team so far of course, we’re riding to win and we’ve not won yet but it’s not over and for the cobbled Classics teams there are two more opportunities. I hope we can put it to right,” Farrar says.

    “I’m having possibly the best spring I’ve ever had but everyone kind of looks done on our team’s performance this spring but what can you do, it’s not my place to make decisions on whether our team’s season is a success or failure.”

    Farrar will be supported by a strong team at Scheldeprijs including Thor Hushovd, Heinrich Haussler and Andreas Klier.

  • Sørensen does the job for Saxo Bank-Sungard

    Chris Anker Sörensen (Saxo Bank Sungard)
    Article published:
    April 06, 2011, 3:39 BST
    Cycling News

    Porte unable to keep up with front runners: looking to Time Trial

    An in-form Chris Anker Sørensen put in a strong ride for Saxo Bank-Sungard on stage two of the Vuelta al Pais Vasco. Sørensen was fourth on the stage, finishing in the second group on the road just two seconds behind winner Vasil Kiriyenka.

    "I told the others during the stage that I was feeling super-strong so they were really there for me all the way and when I finished third in a sprint it's because I'm in good shape. But also Brian [Vandborg], Mads [Christensen] and Nicki [Sørensen] are all doing very well and maybe tomorrow it's going to be their turn to shine while I take a rest in the pack," said an optimistic Saxo Bank-Sungard climber, Chris Anker Sørensen.

    While Sørensen rode a solid race, co-leader Richie Porte struggled on the final climbs and lost time to the other GC contenders. The Australian rider came in with the autobus, more than 18 minutes down, and now sits well off the pace in 112th overall.

    Saxo Bank-Sungard sports director, Philippe Maduit however only took positives from the stage.

    "The riders did a great job in front of the pack for Chris. Richie had an off-day but I'm pretty sure he will be a contender for the time trial later on," he commented in a post-race interview.

    Porte will undoubtedly be looking to build his form for bigger objectives later in the season, and with his GC chances now...