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Second Edition Cycling News, Saturday, October 6, 2012

Date published:
October 06, 2012, 1:00 BST
  • Dombrowski and Boswell discuss Team Sky decision

    Joe Dombrowski (Bontrager Livestrong)
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 6:17 BST
    By:
    Pat Malach

    Julich played key role in landing American U23 standouts

    American U23 standouts Ian Boswell and Joe Dombrowski may have independently reached their decisions to sign their first UCI ProTeam contracts with Team Sky, but the Bontrager-Livestrong teammates, who have become fast friends over the past two years on the US-based development team, agree it's a move that should benefit them both.

    "It was in a way a happy coincidence that we both had interest from Sky, and that was the case with a couple of other teams, too," Dombrowski told Cyclingnews. "But it just worked out that we both felt on or own that was the best place to go. We also recognized that we could sort of support each other well in making the transition there if we were on the same team, so I suppose it was a little bit of both."

    Given the amount of interest that the two riders generated from WorldTour teams, it wasn't really much of coincidence that they shared offers from multiple squads looking to hire their talent and develop their potential. Boswell, who ran second at U23 Liege-Bastogne-Liege this year and finished fifth overall at the Tour of Utah, said he had been talking with eight teams before he finally chose Sky.

    "After the Tour of Utah and my ride there I had interest from a lot of ProTour teams," Boswell said. "There are so many good teams out there that it really was a decision where I had to stop and slow down and think about, you know, it's easy to get excited. But there are so many good teams, and it's hard to choose just one, but at the end of the day I had to look at where was the best situation for me and my future."

    Dombrowski, who turned heads in...

  • PureBlack Racing building for success in 2013

    James Williamson (New Zealand National Team) welcomes the customary 'Langkawi shower' after the stage finish in Melaka.
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 8:11 BST
    By:
    Alex Malone

    Long season sees team focus on final race at Tour of Southland

    With the Tour of Tasmania entering the final day, the team of PureBlack Racing are close completing a full season of racing which almost didn’t happen. The NZ-based squad, which had signalled its intent on building toward a Tour de France start in 2015, ended up folding before the 2012 season began. But with the assistance of the country’s sporting organisation, Bike NZ, the team was able to rebuild, albeit on a smaller scale to what had been planned.

    With a smaller budget, hurried planning and limited managerial support the squad was able to pull together a schedule that would see the tight-knit group race from February at Tour de Lankawai to one of the team’s most important objectives of the year, the Tour of Southland.

    The race has an impressive list of former winners including RadioShack-Nissan’s Hayden Roulston, Gordon McCauley and last year’s winner Josh Atkins who races for the Bontrager-Livestrong team. The five-day race will begin on 28 October, three weeks following the demanding Tour of Tasmania.

    "Our first race was [Tour de] Langkawi and we’ve been going flat-out on the road since that first race in Malaysia," said the team’s director John Harris to Cyclingnews.

    "The problem we had was that we had to try and cover as much ground as we could. We put a huge season together so the guys could get as much exposure as possible. We had a limited budget but we needed the racing.'.

    The team began the season with a roster of around 10 riders but with such a heavy schedule of racing, the Harris soon found himself short of healthy and fit riders to undertake the schedule....

  • Wegmann to stay with Garmin-Sharp two more years

    German champion Fabian Wegmann (Garmin-Sharp)
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 9:22 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    German national champion extends with US-based team

    Fabian Wegmann will stay with the Garmin-Sharp team for another two years. The current German national champion announced the contract extension on his website on Friday.

    “It was clear to me fairly early in the season that I wanted to continue to ride for this team, and now I am happy that the team management and my management could agreed a two-year contract,” he said.

    Wegmann, 32, has only one win this season, taking the German national road title for the third time. However he has a number of top ten finishes and strong performances, including eighth at the Amstel Gold Race.

    His most recent race was the Münsterland Giro, where he rode for team captain Heinrich Haussler. He helped keep the tempo high near the end of the race, to set up Haussler for the sprint. However, the Australian was involved in a large crash with about 5km to go, and Wegmann was left to ride for himself. “But I was so used up from by tempo work on the final kilometers, that in the end I could only finish twelfth,” he commented.

    Weggmann's final race of the season is the Tour of Beijing, alongside Giro d'Italia winner Ryder Hsjedal and Dan Martin.  

    Wegmann turned professional in 2002 with Gerolsteiner, and rode with Team Milram and Leopard Trek before joining Garmin this year.

  • Boasson Hagen leads Team Sky in Beijing

    Team Sky was the last team to take on the Valkenberg course
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 11:30 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    British team down to five riders after losing Swift to injury

    Edvald Boasson Hagen will lead a reduced Team Sky line-up at the Tour of Beijing that starts next Tuesday. Injury to sprinter Ben Swift at the end of the season has reduced the British team to only a five-man squad for the year's final UCI WorldTour race.

    Boasson Hagen most recently won the GP Ouest France-Plouay, and finished second in the World championship road race. He will be supported by Australia's Chris Sutton, who will look for stage wins for himself, but also work for the Norwegian to take the overall title.

    Also there will be Alex Dowsett, who finished eighth in the worlds time trial, and will look to improve on his third place on stage one at the 2011 Tour of Beijing. Two young riders round out the team, neo-pros Salvatore Puccio and Luke Rowe.

    Swift is absent after he suffered a fractured vertebra in his lower back at the recent Circuit Franco-Belge. He has resumed training, and the team had hoped he could participate, but it was not to be. “Well my season has come to an end was hoping to make Beijing but this fracture is not allowing me to b race fit.Looking forward to next year,'” Swift tweeted.

    "We are short in numbers but hopefully we will show ourselves as a strong team but with five guys we will do the best that we can do," team director Marcus Lungquist said. "Edvald's form is pretty good for the sprints as well as being a contender for the GC."

    "We have a fast team with Luke and Alex for the lead outs so we have a strong team. We always go to races looking for a result so coming back from Beijing with a stage win and a place on GC would be a good result from us."

     

  • Nibali rides last race for Liquigas-Cannondale

    Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale).
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 11:38 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Italian in action at the Giro dell’Emilia

    Vincenzo Nibali will compete in the distinctive green and white Liquigas-Cannondale colours for the last time at today’s Giro dell’Emilia race in Italy, after spending seven years with the team.

    The Sicilian will ride for Astana in 2013 after securing a huge contract with the Kazkahstani team to replace Alexandre Vinokourov. Nibali will be in Monaco on Sunday for Vinokourov’s farewell event.

    “This team has been a huge part of my career and I’ll never forget the years we’ve spent together. I’ve grown and matured since 2006 and so has the team, and we’ve had achieved some very important results,” Nibali said in a statement from the team.

    “It feels like I’m leaving a family, a unique group of people, not just collegues. I wish the team all the best for the future and as much success as we’ve achieved together in the last seven years.”

    Nibali turned professional with Fassa Bortolo in 2005 but achieved his major results with Liquigas. He won the GP Ouest France-Plouay in 2006, finished seventh in the 2009 Tour de France and won the Vuelta a Espana in 2010. He was second in the 2011 Giro d’Italia and was third in this year’s Tour de France after trying to unsettle Bradley Wiggins several times in the mountains.

    Nibali is expected to target the Giro d’Italia in 2013, where he could again clash with Wiggins.

    The Giro dell’Emilia finishes with the San Luca climb overlooking Bologna after four other laps on the climb. Also in the Liquigas-Cannondale line-up are Ivan Basso, Damiano Caruso, Federico Canuti, Kristijan Koren, Josè Sarmiento, Alessandro Vanotti and Matthias...

  • Savio back at races after heart attack

    Gianni Savio
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 13:41 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Italian manager building team for 2013

    Gianni Savio is back at races as team manager of the Androni Giocattoli team after a minor heart attack.

    The charming Italian from Turin was at the Coppa Sabatini on Thursday and at the Giro dell’Emilia on Saturday to ensure Androni Giocattoli wins the Coppa Italia team competition for yet another year and so secure an automatic invitation to the 2013 Giro d’Italia. Androni Giocattoli has 714 points, with Colnago-CSF Inox second with 661 points.

    “I had a heart attack but it was a little heart attack. Fortunately there wasn’t any heart damage so I’m back at 100%. I had to miss the world championships for the first time in 27 years but the doctors gave me the ok to be at the final races of the Italian season,” he told Cyclingnews.

    Savio will travel to Venezuela in November in the hope of securing back-uo for a possible WorldTour team in 2014. He already has 14 riders under contract for 2013 but confirms that sprinter Roberto Ferrari and Tour of Langkawi winner Jose Serpa will both move to Lampre-Merida. Jose Rujano has also moved on yet again and will try his luck with Vacansoleil in 2013.

    “Ferrari had a good offer from Lampre and so I agreed to let him go,” Savio said. “I still think we’ve got a good team with Franco Pellizotti, Emanuele Sella as leaders and some other solid riders like Francesco Reda, Riccardo Chiarini, Marco Frapporti and Alessandro Malaguti.”

    Italian cycling is struggling to compete at the highest level due to a lack of major sponsors. Savio is in favour of some kind of economical fair play rules, with team budgets limited as they are in some other sports. However he is realistic about the...

  • Nuyens signs with Garmin-Sharp through 2015

    Nick Nuyens (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff)
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 16:21 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Former Tour of Flanders winner to bolster Classics squad

    Slipstream sports has announced that 2011 Tour of Flanders winner Nick Nuyens will join the Garmin-Sharp squad through 2015.

    The Belgian Classics specialist joins after two years with the Saxo Bank team, and will help to fill the void left by the departure of Sep Vanmarcke.

    "Nick is a huge talent and we are thrilled that he will be joining Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda next season," said Jonathan Vaughters, CEO of Slipstream Sports. "We have wanted to continue to bolster our Classics team, and Nick is obviously a tremendous addition for us. His talent, experience and deep knowledge of these races will be invaluable. We are very happy he chose Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda and we look forward to an exciting season."

    Nuyens, 32, first showed his talents in the spring classics while racing with Quick Step in 2005, when he won Omloop Het Volk. He followed that with a victory in Kuurne - Brussel - Kuurne the following year before moving across to the Cofidis team.

    There, he placed second in the Tour of Flanders in 2008 before moving to the Rabobank team, with which the GP de Wallonie was his only one-day success.

    A move across to Saxo Bank proved to be a turnaround, and in 2011, he won both the Dwars door Vlaanderen - Waregem and Tour of Flanders, but has had little success this season due to a hip fracture sustained in Paris-Nice.

    "I am really happy to join Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda. I have always admired and been charmed by them," said Nuyens. "The team is well structured, has a super team spirit and it's just a really strong squad with a good mix of young talent and a lot of experience. I'm...

  • Lotto Belisol hoping Henderson can shine in Beijing

    Greg Henderson (Lotto Belisol)
    Article published:
    October 06, 2012, 22:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Hansen to end marathon season in China

    The Lotto Belisol squad has named its eight-man team for the upcoming WorldTour finale, the Tour of Beijing in China, and is looking for sprinter Greg Henderson to represent the team in what is expected to be a sprint-friendly first stage.

    Directeur Sportif Michiel Elijzen said that without the opening time trial and an expected bunch sprint on the first stage, he is counting on the Kiwi.

    "Greg Henderson is one of the fast men on the participants list, so hopefully he can play a significant role," Elijzen said.

    Also heading up the team will be Australian Adam Hansen, who is at the end of a busy season that included his participation in each of the three Grand Tours, as well as neo-pro Tim Wellens.

    "Tim is a good climber and gives us the opportunity to see how far he can get. He is highly motivated and showed a lot of character in Lombardy."

    Wellens agreed that the course could suit him. "I like to climb, but it remains to be seen how much I can stand in a WorldTour stage race," he said. "This is the ideal opportunity to see what the relationship is between my level and that of more experienced riders. For me it is very difficult to predict what is possible, but it is a dream to be in a WorldTour race."

    The Tour of Beijing kicks off from Tiananmen Square on October 9.

    Lotto Belisol for Tour of Beijing: Kenny Dehaes, Gert Dockx, Adam Hansen, Greg Henderson, Maartin Neyens, Mehdi Sohrabi, Joost Van Leijen, Tim Wellens