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Second Edition Cycling News, Friday, May 31, 2013

Date published:
May 31, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Goss chasing stage wins, confidence at Tour de Suisse

    Matt Goss (Orica GreenEdge) finishing the stage at the 2013 Giro d'Italia
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 4:28 BST
    By:
    Jane Aubrey

    Orica GreenEdge sprinter fires back at critics after disappointing Giro

    Matt Goss (Orica GreenEdge) is anticipating a turnaround in fortunes next week at the Tour de Suisse as he looks to hone his form ahead of the Tour de France.

    The 26-year-old sprinter was on the back foot from the start of the Giro d'Italia, struck down by the flu and eventually forced to withdraw from the race on Stage 16. Still showing signs of the illness back at home in Monaco after another course of antibiotics, Goss was confident his prospects are back on the way up, just over a week before his next race.

    "The training the fitness and the shape's all really good after the Giro," he told Cyclingnews. "With this one more hit out at the Tour de Suisse, it's another nine-day race, so that's going to get me exactly where I need to be as long as I can get to there at 100 per cent healthy and not start that race sick. That's the biggest goal at the moment and then everything else should fall into place.

    "I still feel like I've got a bit of a cough and a blocked nose – I always seem to have a little bit of a blocked nose – the cough's not so bad," Goss admitted. "I feel like I'm probably around 90 per cent but I'm definitely moving in the right way."

    His sprint training in full swing, Goss is currently concentrating on shorter efforts in a bid for intensity and power with an eye to add to his lone win for the year from Tirreno-Adriatico.

    Goss rode in Slovenia in the lead up to last year's Tour, with the Olympic Games still on the horizon but the Swiss race is the perfect fit this time around. It will be his second appearance at the Tour de Suisse, having last raced there in 2011 under the Highroad banner, his best result finishing runner-up to Peter Sagan on the...

  • MPCC calls for cortisol monitoring during Tour de France

    The doping control van isn't hard to miss.
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 6:10 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    AFLD carrying out additional testing

    The Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC) has made a request to the French Anti-Doping Agency (AFLD) that cortisol levels also be monitored during the Tour de France this year.

    Teams signing on to the MPCC charter agree not to field riders while they hold a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) for cortisone and they agree to undergo four voluntary tests for cortisol levels throughout the season. At present, BMC, Cannondale, Euskaltel Euskadi, Movistar, Omega Pharma-Quick-Step, RadioShack Leopard, Saxo-Tinkoff and Sky are all non-signatories to the MPCC.

    According to L'Equipe, the letter sent to French Sports Minister Valerie Fourneyron, says that: "It would make sense that the 22 teams are controlled in the same way and medically monitored externally."

    The AFLD will be carrying out additional testing at this year's Tour after an agreement was reached with the UCI allowing whereabouts information on riders and biological passport data to be shared so that the AFLD can perform random tests.

    Cortisone is permitted by the World Anti-Doping Agency if an athlete carries a TUE. 

  • Report: Wiggins to miss Tour de France?

    Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) kept in touch until the final few moments
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 9:46 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Illness and injury put participation in doubt

    Bradley Wiggins (Sky) could miss the Tour de France, according to reports in Gazzetta dello Sport and the Daily Mail on Friday. The defending Tour champion withdrew from the Giro d’Italia ahead of stage 13 citing a chest infection and a knee injury.

    Wiggins will not ride the Critérium du Dauphiné, which gets underway on Sunday, and the Daily Mail reports that he is “making slow progress” in his bid to recover from the ailments that cut short his Giro bid. Gazzetta dello Sport points to Wiggins’ troublesome knee, in particular, as hampering his progress. The Englishman was said to be afflicted by tendonitis in his left knee during the Giro.

    "With these setbacks I can confirm that Brad cannot currently train properly and we are monitoring this situation carefully," Sky manager Dave Brailsford told The Guardian on Friday morning.

    Prior to the Giro, there had been speculation that Wiggins would race the Route du Sud [June 13-16] as his final preparation race for the Tour, but after he failed to finish the Italian race, it was assumed that his pre-Tour tune-up would take place at the Dauphiné or the Tour de Suisse [June 8-16].

    A spokesperson for Sky told the Daily Mail that the Tour de Suisse team will be announced early next week and that no decision has been taken on the Tour de France squad.

    Chris Froome, second overall last year, is set to lead Sky’s Tour team after an...

  • De Gendt hoping to be back on track for Tour de France ambitions at Dauphiné

    Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil - DCM)
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 10:44 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Vacansoleil-DCM chasing form of 2012 Giro d'Italia

    Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil-DCM) will take on the Critérium du Dauphiné starting this Sunday with the hope of building the final foundations towards a Tour de France where he'll be carrying great expectations.

    The 26-year-old has long spoken of his ambitions for this year's Tour, and that he is hopeful of emulating his feats of the 2012 Giro d'Italia where claimed the Dutch team's first ever overall podium in a grand tour, finishing third.

    "I want to rediscover my super form of last year," De Gendt told Nieuwsblad.be

    De Gendt wasn't able to produce the performance he had hoped earlier this month at the Tour of California, finishing 52nd on the general classification, having lost 18 minutes on the opening stage, won by teammate Lieuwe Westra. De Gendt explained that a change in his riding position left him with an irritated knee but he is confident of turning things around at the French race, which begins on Sunday.

    "I especially want eight days of racing back-to-back," he said. "I don't start the race with the intention of being in contention for the overall. I'd rather win a stage. If I can finish in the top five then that would be a bonus."

    De Gendt earned the team's first win of the 2013 season at the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya, having earlier crashed out of contention for the overall at Paris-Nice.

    "I've had my fair share of bad luck," he said of the year so far.

  • Copeland leaves MTN-Qhubeka

    Brent Copeland will tackle building the team's service course in Italy and take on the logistics of the European campaign
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 11:36 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    South African unhappy with lack of input

    Brent Copeland has resigned his position as European manager at MTN-Qhubeka, citing a lack of input into decision-making at the team, which is the first African squad to be registered at Pro Continental level.

    “I was made a thousand promises but things couldn’t go on like that, so I resigned,” Copeland told Gazzetta dello Sport. “I couldn’t accept being just a kind of taxi driver, bringing the riders around. There were also differences with the head of the team on many aspects – technical, logistical, organisational.”

    In spite of MTN-Qhubeka’s early success at Pro Continental level, including Gerald Ciolek’s surprise victory at the snow-interrupted Milan-San Remo in March, Copeland became frustrated at what he saw as an increasingly marginalised role at the team. He alluded in particular to the prominence of directeur sportif Jens Zemke in the running of the team.

    “The ‘German’ part of the team, let’s call it that, has taken the upper hand,” Copeland said. “And with Douglas Ryder, the team manager, things weren’t working. I made it clear a couple of times that things couldn’t go on like that, that in order to have a certain role, I need to be able to have the power to make decisions. Nothing happened so it was better to leave.”

    Copeland spent a long spell as a directeur sportif at Lampre and then worked with Moto GP rider Ben Spies before re-entering cycling with MTN-Qhubeka last autumn.

    MTN-Qhubeka team spokesman Xylon van Eyck told Cyclingnews, "Brent has had an incredible impact with our team and setting up our infrastructure in Italy. There aren't many people we could call on to do what he has done and we're very grateful for that. We wish him well with what lies ahead...

  • NetApp-Endura ready to tackle first Criterium du Dauphine

    Training time for Team NetApp-Endura
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 12:48 BST
    By:
    Susan Westemeyer

    Team manager Denk looking forward to Vuelta a España

    Team NetApp-Endura is eagerly anticipating its first Critérium du Dauphiné, which will round out the first half of its season. The team will be looking for stage wins, and keep an eye on the GC, as well. Team manager Ralph Denk says that he is pleased with the team's development and he is still anticipating a move up to the WorldTour at some point in the future.

    At the Dauphiné, the team will be looking to Jan Barta and Leo König, both of whom have brought in top results this spring. König won the queen stage of the Tour of California, and Barta won the Szlakiem Grodow Piastowskich, and finished on the podium in both the Circuit de la Sarthe and the Bayern Rundfahrt.

    To win in the Dauphiné, “you have to do well in the mountains. We’ll see who can draw on those skills next week,” Denk told Cyclingnews.  “There won’t be a leader on the team from the outset. We’ll decide that as the race progresses. Sometimes it’s better to remain flexible.”

    One of the attractions of the Dauphiné is that it is run by Tour de France organisers ASO. Denk pointed out that this is “a very important race for us. It’s the first stage race, in Europe, organized by the ASO, that we’re competing in.”

    Denk and the team had hoped that the wildcard to the Dauphiné was a signal that they would also get a wildcard invitation to the Tour de France, but that did not work out. It was the team's second such disappointment this year, after missing out on the Giro d'Italia, which it rode in 2012.

    “Of course, you’re disappointed at first. When it’s your goal to compete in the greatest race in the world and...

  • Rodriguez hits back at doping innuendo

    Freddie Rodriguez (Jelly Belly) makes it his fourth national title win.
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 13:36 BST
    By:
    Pat Malach

    US national champion calls for a clean rider union

    Four-time US Professional Road Race champion Freddie Rodriguez (Jelly Belly Cycling Team) said Thursday that being "put in the same boat" with a generation of riders tainted by performance enhancing drugs was hurtful and disrespectful of the hard work he has put into earning results throughout his 15-year pro career.

    Rodriguez, 39, addressed his critics during a wide-ranging conference call with half a dozen reporters Thursday afternoon, three days after winning his fourth US pro title in Tennessee and three days before he will compete in his new jersey at the inaugural Philly Cycling Classic.

    "Of course I'm upset," he said in response to a reporter's question about the volume of negative reactions to his latest US title. "It's hurtful, because they don't know how hard I've had to fight for everything I've done. So yeah, it's very hurtful. They don't know my life, so it hurts when they put me in the same boat."

    Rodriguez started his pro career with Saturn before venturing to Europe for turns at Mapei, Domo-Farm Frites, Vini Caldirola, Acqua & Sapone and Lotto. He came up through the amateur ranks on the US national team with Lance Armstrong, George Hincapie, Bobby Julich and Kevin Livingston. Most of his cohorts have either admitted PED use, been caught or otherwise implicated.

    The Colombian-born rider is a four-time Tour de Georgia stage winner. He has raced in all three Grand Tours and won a stage of the Giro d'Italia in 2004. He also finished second at Milan-San Remo and Gent Wevelgem and was the long-time lead-out man for Robbie McEwen, winner of 24 Grand Tour stages.

    "My wins have always been really hard-fought," Rodriguez said Thursday. "It's not easy for me to win. I knew that the odds were against me a lot of the...

  • Netherlands names long list for Worlds 2013 and 2014

    What? Speak up! The Dutch team communicates sans-radios.
    Article published:
    May 31, 2013, 14:44 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    New trainer wants to establish core group to train together

    The Netherlands has announced its long list of riders for both the 2013 and 2014 road World Championships. New national coach Johan Lammerts has said that he wants to establish a core group to prepare for the races in both years.

    The early selection covers 15 riders: Lars Boom, Stef Clement, Robert Gesink, Wilco Kelderman, Steven Kruijswijk, Bauke Mollema, Tom Jelte Slagter, Bram Tankink, Laurens ten Dam, Johnny Hoogerland, Wout Poels, Westra, Niki Terpstra, Sebastian Langeveld and Pieter Weening.

    Only nine riders will be named to the final team. The group is flexible and riders may be added at any time.

    When Lammerts was named as coach last year, he said that he wanted to work with a core group of 10 to 20 riders,and would als doe the same with the women riders. He would hold regular training camps for the groups. The group is flexible and riders may be added at any time.

    The 2013 Worlds are to be held on a difficult course in Florence, with the 2014 Worlds to be in Ponferrada, Spain.