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Second Edition Cycling News, Saturday, May 10, 2014

Date published:
May 10, 2014, 1:00 BST
  • Movistar and Quintana eighth in a wet Belfast team time trial

    Movistar finishes its time trial
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 3:40 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Unzué happy with the team's performance

    For Nairo Quintana the opening team time trial of the 2014 Giro d'Italia was an acceptable start for the Colombian who is looking to be wearing pink when the peloton arrives in Trieste on June 1 as his Movistar team finished the 21.7km race 55 seconds behind stage winner Orica-GreenEdge.

    "To be honest, looking at the conditions we had during our time trial, how wet the roads were, the fact that we didn't crash is already something to be satisfied about," said director sportif Eusebio Unzué. "We knew that weather in such a country changes in a matter of minutes — this could happen, since some favourites were starting more than one hour apart. We had to do our whole TTT under the rain, from the very start, and especially the most complicated section, which was the downhill after the slopes to the palace.

    "There wasn't much water on the road there, but enough to force us to cover it more slowly. It was awful for us, but otherwise, I'm happy with how the boys did today. It's true that we lost Antón very early into the course and that Castroviejo had to make an extra effort to close a gap and eventually dropped — but all of them were good."

    Second on the stage was Omega Pharma-Quick Step with Rigoberto Uran and in third was Cadel Evans' BMC team. Both riders are the best placed of general classification favourites although one of the contendors for the maglia rosa, Dan Martin, crashed out with

  • John-Lee Augustyn announces second and final retirement

    John Lee Augustyn (MTN - Qhubeka)
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 6:20 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    South African unable to overcome hip injury from 2007 crash

    Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung's John-Lee Augustyn has announced his retirement from cycling with immediate effect. The 27-year-old had previously retired from cycling due to long last effects from a crash at the 2007 Tour of Portugal.

    Augustyn underwent a successful Birmingham Hip Resurfacing procedure of his left hip in 2011 to repair damage caused by avascular necrosis of the femoral head following his 2007 crash.

    Augustyn rode for Team Sky in 2010 and 2011 and spent the 2012 season with Utensilnord Named. After the hip operation and rehabilitation program, Augustyn aimed on returning to the WorldTour and in February said that he believed his injury troubles to be behind him.

    Having made contact with MTN-Qhubeka during 2013, and given his African origins, grand tour experience and performance record, after a comprehensive medical assessment by our team doctor Dr Jon Patricios and consultant specialists, management signed him for the 2014 season.

    Despite rest and rehabilitation exercises, a change in bike fit to be less aggressive and more upright position, medical intervention and 2-months of recovery and rehabilitation, extensive consultation with MTN'-Qhubeka's medical team and his personal medical doctors, Augustyn decided to end his cycling career.

    I have had a hard time over the last few years in my cycling career suffering with on-going injuries," Augustyn said. "I decided to take an indefinite break for about a year and I then started riding again and the bug bit...

  • Solid ride for Team Sky in Giro d'Italia TTT

    Team Sky were fifth today
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 10:54 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    British team battle back for fifth

    Team Sky put in a solid display in the opening stage of the 2014 Giro d’Italia on Friday, finishing fifth in the team time trial in Belfast. The British squad, who won the team event in last year’s race, finished 35 seconds behind stage winners Orica-GreenEDGE and relied on a strong ride in the second half of the 21.7 km test to pull themselves into the mix.

    The team had started relatively slowly, only managing to chalk up 9th place (out of 12) at the first time check. However as the weather improved the team began to find their feet.

    By the time they crossed the line they had limited their losses, while also managing to put time into the likes of Movistar, Astana and Katusha.

    “The weather wasn’t ideal, and although it improved whilst we were on the course, the roads were still slippery so we had to keep our wits about us,” Ben Swift said on the team’s website.

    “We lost Bernie [Eisel] on that climb to Stormont. He’d had a few mechanical problems during his warm up so wasn’t as well prepared as he could have been and we missed his horsepower over the second half of the course. CJ hung on for as long as he could as well, but it was no surprise he dropped off given his late call up to the team.”

    Team Sky came into the race without a genuine contender for the podium. However Dario Cataldo and Kanstantsin Siutsou have been designated as the team’s GC hopefuls. The main ambition for the team though is to win stages.

    “We all gave it our all and were happy to claw some time back on GreenEdge and finish strongly. I felt good out there, better than I’ve done in a team time trial for a long time, and I think we can be happy with the result. Our focus turns to tomorrow now and we’ll try to do something if it comes down to a...

  • Prototype Campagnolo group spotted at Giro d'Italia

    Europcar rider Maxime Mederel is using this prototype Campagnolo group at this year's Giro d'Italia. Details are scant but this is likely an all-new Record group
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 12:26 BST
    By:
    James Huang

    Four-arm carbon crank, revamped front and rear derailleurs

    This article originally appeared on Bikeradar.

    Quietly hidden away on the Colnago C60 of Europcar rider Maxime Mederel at the Giro d'Italia was a prototype Campagnolo drivetrain that – as far as we're aware – hadn't seen a camera lens until today. The radically new design is a major departure from Campagnolo's current design and while there were no identifying logos, we're also guessing this will be ultimately wear the Record model name. If our observations hold true, this new group will be lighter and more versatile with faster shifting to boot.

    The star of the new group is the four-arm crank which uses molded carbon fiber arms, an integrated chainring spider, and what looks to be the same Ultra-Torque split-spindle design of current Campagnolo cranks. Chainring bolts feed in from behind and thread directly into the spider and given the estimated size of the bolt circle diameter, the crank looks like it will be compatible with both standard and compact chainrings.

    Both chainrings were clearly made via CNC machining but we would expect more durable forged construction come production time. Given the recent introduction of Campagnolo's Over-Torque cranksets for BB30 and PF30 oversized bottom brackets, a similar option on this new crank seems like a safe bet.

    Both derailleurs have been completely redesigned as well and current Campagnolo users will be happy to know that – at least on this prototype setup – the new drivetrain carries on with an 11-speed rear end. Mederel's Colnago appeared to be equipped with current-generation Campagnolo Record Ergopower levers (although it's entirely possible that internal differences will prevent full cross-compatibility).

    Geometry on both derailleurs is clearly different...

  • Petacchi places Uran duties above sprinting for pink jersey

    Alessandro Petacchi (Omega Pharma - QuickStep)
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 13:11 BST
    By:
    Barry Ryan

    Italian lies five seconds off lead ahead of stage 2

    Omega Pharma-QuickStep’s second place finish in the opening team time trial of the Giro d’Italia put Alessandro Petacchi within five seconds of the maglia rosa at the beginning of stage 2, but even though he has the blessing of his team leader Rigoberto Uran, the veteran Italian insists that he is unlikely to contest the anticipated sprint finish in Belfast.

    Only Orica-GreenEdge were quicker than QuickStep over the 21.7 kilometre course on Friday evening, a performance that leaves Uran with an early lead of 50 seconds over fellow countryman Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and 1:28 over Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha), the two principal pre-race favourites.

    Their display also means that Petacchi is just five seconds behind overall leader Svein Tuft and given his recent sprint victory at the GP Pino Cerami, the Italian seems the man best-placed to try and divest the Orica-GreenEdge squad of the pink jersey, particularly given that there are 13 bonus seconds on offer on Saturday, between the intermediate sprint at Carrickfergus and the finale in Belfast.

    Speaking to Cyclingnews in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter on Saturday morning, however, Petacchi explained that the team’s priority on stage 2 was to maintain Uran’s early advantage rather than attempt to manoeuvre their way into the pink jersey.

    “I won’t go for the sprint today – the important thing is not to lose time with Rigoberto. It’s going to be a tough day. It’s long stage, it’s going to rain all day long and we’re going to have to stay united,” Petacchi said.

    This time twelve months ago, Petacchi’s career was in hiatus after he rescinded his contract with Lampre-Merida, but...

  • Giro d'Italia: Garmin determined to battle on

    Daniel Martin sits stunned on the ground after crashing in the Giro d'Italia team time trial
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 13:41 BST
    By:
    Alasdair Fotheringham

    Fernandez, Dan Martin non-starters for second stage

    As the first few spots of rain began to fall on stage two of the Giro d'Italia, a determined-sounding Charly Wegelius reflected on stage one’s team time trial crash, how it had managed to give Garmin-Sharp squad’s Giro d'Italia plans the worst of batterings from the word go - but how he and the riders will soldier on regardless.

    In one fell swoop, Garmin-Sharp co-leader, Dan Martin and domestique Koldo Fernandez were both injured and out of the race, two more teammates, Nathan Haas and Andre Cardoso, were injured but able to continue and the team’s co-leader, Ryder Hesjedal, is 3-26 down on stage winners Orica-GreenEDGE.

    Neither Martin nor Fernandez - the latter completed the team time trial course in last place of the entire field, clutching his arm and clearly in pain - started the stage two. Both have broken collarbones.

    “It’s important to allow the riders a bit of time to be disappointed,” Wegelius said, “because they work hard and they care about what they do. But after that there has to be a moment where you draw a a line in the sand and start looking forwards, look at the positive things and what projects we can still do.”

    “The two riders that are still in the race that are injured” - Andre Cardoso and Nathan Haas - “they’re going to need a bit of time to work their way through it. But for the healthy riders, this is the Giro and there can be opportunities around every corner so I don’t think we need to switch off for any given amount of time. The race starts in an hour and we’ll be racing along with everybody else.”

    “So there can be opportunities from today onwards and we have to be ready to take them.”

    As for what actually happened, Wegelius said “from the brief images I could see online, there was a manhole cover or something on the road that...

  • Viviani in a different frame of mind as Giro d’Italia dawns

    Elia Viviani (Cannondale)
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 14:19 BST
    By:
    Barry Ryan

    Italian sprinter buoyed by Tour of Turkey wins

    Twelve months ago, Elia Viviani arrived at the Giro d'Italia with his legs in tune following a heavy spring racing programme, but without a single victory to buttress his confidence as he faced into the white heat of the race’s bunch sprints.

    It was to prove a consistent but utterly frustrating Giro debut for the Cannondale sprinter, as he took second places on the opening day in Naples and at Margherita di Savoia at the end of the opening week, before completing his race with a third place finish in Brescia.

    Fresh from two sprint victories at the recent Tour of Turkey, however, as well as an earlier win at the Settimana Coppi e Bartali, Viviani lines up in Belfast in a relaxed frame of mind and optimistic that he can break his grand tour duck.

    "The eight days of racing in Turkey gave me the jump in quality in my condition that I needed before a big tour, and winning the two stages there has definitely given me a bit more belief in that condition too," Viviani told Cyclingnews.

    "Last year, I rode well at the Giro but I didn't come away with a win. But back then, I wasn't coming into the race with a pair of important wins beforehand. Those two wins in Turkey mean that my head is in a different place to last year for the first sprints of the Giro."

    The man who stood between Viviani and stage victory at the Giro last year was Mark Cavendish, who won five sprints out of five in a race where bunch finishes were at a premium. Beating Cavendish into second and third place on successive days in Turkey, then, marked a considerable scalp for Viviani, particularly given that the Manxman helped himself to four wins over the course of the week.

    "It was really very important for me to get those wins, especially because Cav was in very good form in Turkey, just like at the Giro last year. So to make...

  • Dombrowski returns to racing in California

    Joe Dombrowski (Team Sky)
    Article published:
    May 10, 2014, 14:58 BST
    By:
    Pat Malach

    Team Sky rider set for third race of 2014

    For all intents and purposes, the Tour of California will mark the beginning of Joe Dombrowski's second season with Team Sky. The 22-year-old American has been dealing with nagging knee pain since January, and he's wracked up only two race days so far this year.

    "I started Coppi e Bartali, but it was somewhat due to the fact that we were short on guys," Dombroswki told Cyclingnews in advance of the California start on Sunday.

    "It was like, 'We know your knee is injured, but we just don't have the guys, so you at least need to just go and start,'" he said of the Italian race in late March. "I ended up doing a couple of days and then pulling out."

    Dombrowski finished Coppi e Bartali's first day, which included a road race and a team trial. But he did not finish the stage 2 road race on the second day and has not raced since. By comparison, Dombrowski had 25 race days by this time last year.

    Dombrowski returned to the US in early April and sought treatment at the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine, where x-rays eventually revealed that one of his legs is shorter than the other.

    "It's sort of hard to diagnose, but it's relatively easy to fix," he said. "It will take some time to even back out and get back into it. I've done three weeks of decent training now. So it was good to get that sorted out. I'm just happy really to be back riding my bike and be back on the race schedule."

    The California race will be just his second opportunity to compete in the US with Team Sky. Dombroswki started the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado last year but had to drop out of that race after suffering multiple nose bleeds on stage 1. An ear, nose and throat specialist determined Dombroswki had an over abundance of blood...