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Latest Cycling News for May 26, 2006

Date published:
May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
  • Dublin or Meath for the team prize in FBD Ras?

    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Tommy Campbell, Irish Independent, Evening Herald, Sunday Independent

    By Tommy Campbell, Irish Independent, Evening Herald, Sunday Independent The weather has certainly...

    By Tommy Campbell, Irish Independent, Evening Herald, Sunday Independent

    The weather has certainly not been kind to the participants and it has also been a major talking point to date in this year's FBD Insurance Ras. There has been tremendous interest in the various classifications, especially in the county teams section, which looks as though it will come right down to the wire in Skerries on Sunday.

    In recent years that classification for the county competitors has been a big bonus, and the rivalry has been intense. Realistically, only Dublin and Meath are in contention after six days of racing, with the minimum of time separating these two teams. On the football field, both counties enjoy similar rivalry and are always a huge draw and a big talking point. Similarly in cycling, the competition is intense, and this week both sets of team members have been at their best.

    Dublin, sponsored by Usher Irish Road club, can thank Tommy Evans, a former winner of the Ras in 1996 for keeping them in contention. Likewise, Brian Kenneally is keeping alive the hopes of the Meath squad sponsored by MyHome.ie/Cycleways.com.

    Up to the start of the 'Ras' both Tommy and Brian had not been figuring prominently in domestic events, but in recent days both have been the cornerstone of their respective counties' dominance. Evidently they have both focused their ambitions on a good showing in Ireland's premier cycling event.

    If Meath succeeds, it would be a huge bonus to their new co-sponsor, MyHome.ie, who only last month joined forces with long-time sponsors Cycleways.com. "Believe you me, success in the county section of the event would be a real bonus. You can observe the fascination that the rivalry between the teams is great," said Aidan Crowley, who only a week ago was in doubt of racing in the eight day event because of illness.

    The 54th edition of the Ras...

  • Montreal World Cup gears up

    Riders wait
    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Mitch Friedman

    By Mitch Friedman The 9th running of the UCI Elite Women's Road Cycling World Cup of Montreal will...

    By Mitch Friedman

    The 9th running of the UCI Elite Women's Road Cycling World Cup of Montreal will take place this Saturday on the challenging Mont-Royal course.

    This year the Montreal World Cup has the support of the City of Montreal with the City sponsorship of $CAD100,000 will allow the event to offer an international race of high level and to host the best cyclists in the world, as well as to confirm the importance of the Montreal in the international cycling field.

    This year the Montreal World Cup is the seventh round of the 12 round series, and the only one on the North American continent. Also this year the famous Mount Royal course is now more then 1 km longer, stretching to Avenue du Parc. According to Daniel Manibal race promoter, "The new course allows the public to view the race from different vantage points, although the Mount Royal lookout and summit remain the choice spots to watch the event unfold." Daniel Manibal also wanted to thank the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough for agreeing to welcome the new part of the course.

  • No mistakes for Tom in Belgium

    Tom Boonen (Quick.Step)
    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Gabriella Ekström Tom Boonen exacted revenge for yesterday's missed sprint when he took advantage...

    By Gabriella Ekström

    Tom Boonen exacted revenge for yesterday's missed sprint when he took advantage of a school book leadout performed by his teammates and won the second stage of the Tour of Belgium to Knokke-Heist. This was Boonen's third win in Knokke in as many attempts.

    "Yeah, it's three out of three. Nice," Boonen said after the stage. "I came to the front early in the sprint, and there was also a lot of headwind. But it was slightly uphill and a power sprint is perfect for me and I did the job well. My family is here, so if I didn't win, I would have got a beating," he added jokingly.

    Skil-Shimano's Maarten Tjallingii remains the race leader, and will start this morning's time trial in the black leader's jersey. There he will have to chase a strong-looking Boonen who said of the time trial; "I'll go full gas, and whatever happens, happens. I hope that I can surprise myself, but I feel that I am a bit in the dark."

    Click here for the full results, report and photos of stage 2

  • Ludewig: concentrating on the Giro

    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    "Of course the new doping affair is being discussed here in the race and between colleagues," says...

    "Of course the new doping affair is being discussed here in the race and between colleagues," says T-Mobile's Jörg Ludewig. "If what's being reported is all true, then it's a hard blow to cycling's image. Here we are exerting ourselves to the limit, it's a super race with a great atmosphere - and then suddenly, because of such crud, everything is brought into question and our sport once again gets negative headlines. You hear lots, but there is hardly any sure, sound information. Besides which, after two and a half weeks of the Giro, you are so physically involved, that you have enough to do with yourself and your problems. That makes this new scandal right now to a side issue. I'm much more concerned about the next two stages." (www.joerg-ludewig.de)

    Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operación Puerto'

    April 2, 2009 - Valverde indignant over possible suspension
    April 1, 2009
    - Valverde: Italy requests two-year suspension
    March 13, 2009 - Le Monde newspaper hit with fine over Puerto allegations
    March 2, 2009 - WADA president Fahey asks for Puerto evidence
    February 24, 2009 - Spanish federation seeks access to Puerto blood bags
    February 20, 2009 - CONI considers Valverde case while UCI awaits verdict
    February 19, 2009 - Valverde under criminal investigation
    February 11, 2009 - Valverde summonsed for Operación Puerto in Italy
    February 8, 2009 - Eight charged in...

  • Zabel, Holczer and Wüst comment on the Spanish affair

    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    "I find it good that Spain has instituted a new policy of 'zero tolerance', said Erik Zabel, one of...

    "I find it good that Spain has instituted a new policy of 'zero tolerance', said Erik Zabel, one of Milram's top sprinters, to Eurosport. "Now we have to wait and see what the reports say. If there is something in there, it should be laid on the table. It is too bad that cycling is making negative headlines again, but it also gives a chance to all the riders who try to do things the honourable way."

    Hans-Michael Holczer, Gerolsteiner team manager, came down hard, saying, "If the allegations are right, then the affected persons must be removed from cycling for many years."

    Marcel Wüst was similarly disappointed by the affair, telling Cyclingnews, "It seems that police and government pressure are the only things that work. A sad day for our sport, especially when people pretend to accept the anti- doping rules, and then continue to cheat. It will be harder and harder to convince fans and sponsors that cycling is a great and fair sport."

  • Saiz' team to continue racing

    A member of the Spanish Civil Guard
    Article published:
    May 26, 2006, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Gabriella Ekström

    Despite the withdrawal of its main sponsor, the team formerly known as Liberty Seguros-Würth will...

    Despite the withdrawal of its main sponsor, the team formerly known as Liberty Seguros-Würth will continue racing until the end of this season, with Manolo Saiz still involved, the Spanish press reports. Saiz was arrested earlier this week on doping charges as part of an anti-doping operation carried out by the Spanish civil guard. However, he was released after questioning, as police considered him merely a 'client' of the doping ring, and not one of the ringleaders. Four others, including former cycling team doctor Eufemiano Fuentes, remain in custody.

    After his release, Saiz, together with his associate Pablo Antón, who co-own the team's management company Active Bay SL, indicated that the team will continue until at least the end of the season with Würth as the sole sponsor. However, the available funds will be dramatically reduced, as Liberty Seguros contributed approximately 70% of the €10 million/year budget. The team currently employs 52 people, including 29 riders.

    "I haven't planned to stop the team," said Antón to Europa Press. The team's press officer Jacinto Vidarte confirmed to Sportwereld.be, "The future of the team is assured until the end of the season, at least, even if Liberty disappears from the jerseys."

    Team rider Koen de Kort commented in his Giro d'Italia diary, "What is exactly going on now, I don't know; we are actually getting very little information here. What I do know as that the team will continue. I have my contract with a company called Active Bay and not with the sponsor itself. What happens to myself and all of us here now, we have to wait and see."

    Manolo Saiz' continuing involvement with the team will likely depend on how the case unfolds. Saiz will be required to appear before the investigating judge at some stage in the near future. If he is formally implicated in this doping affair, then the Spanish cycling federation could start proceedings...