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Second Edition Cycling News, Saturday, September 3, 2011

Date published:
September 03, 2011, 1:00 BST
  • Farrar, Phinney headline US squad for Copenhagen

    Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo) crosses the line in first.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 0:27 BST
    Cycling News

    USA Cycling announces full Worlds team

    With the UCI road world championships in Copenhagen expected to be contested as a field sprint, the USA is looking to Garmin-Cervélo's Tyler Farrar as its best bet for its first rainbow jersey in the men's road race since Lance Armstrong's title in 1993.

    Former pursuit world champion Taylor Phinney (BMC Racing) will compete in the road race and the time trial along with Andrew Talansky (Garmin-Cervélo).

    Also riding the men's elite road race will be 2011 national champion Matthew Busche (RadioShack), former US champion Benjamin King (RadioShack), Brent Bookwalter and Jeff Louder (BMC Racing) and Timmy Duggan (Liquigas-Cannondale).

    The women's team will be headed up by time trial national champion Evelyn Stevens (HTC-Highroad) and Olympic champion Kristin Armstrong (Peanut Butter & CO TWENTY 12) for the race against the clock.

    Amber Neben (HTC-Highroad), a former world champion in the time trial, will not contest the event, but will be a part of the road race team along with US champion Robin Farina (NOW and Novartis), Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Colavita-Baci p/b Cooking Light) and Shelley Olds (Diadora Pasta Zara).

    Joe Dombrowski (Trek-Livestrong), winner of a stage of the Giro Ciclistico della Valle d'Aosta, will head up the U23 men's team, along with Espoir Paris-Roubaix bronze medalist Jacob Rathe (Chipotle Development), Robert Bush (Kentucky Flyers-Texas Roadhouse), Gavin Mannion and Ian Boswell (Trek-Livestrong).

    The team will pick two riders from Lawson Craddock, Carter Jones or Nathan Brown (all Trek-Livestrong) for the time trial.

    Team USA For 2011 UCI Road World Championships

    Elite Men
    Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing) - road race
    Matthew Busche...

  • Finale crash leaves Bakelants in tears

    Jan Bakelandts (Omega Pharma Lotto)
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 9:29 BST
    Cycling News

    Omega Pharma-Lotto rider uninjured after hitting traffic island

    Jan Bakelants was in tears after his attack out of a break group with barely one kilometer to go in Ponferrada ended with him laying on the road. The Omega Pharma-Lotto rider went down after smashing into a padded sign on a traffic island, the second time that his dreams of a Grand Tour stage win have dissolved with a crash in the finale.

    The 25-year-old had spent virtually the entire thirteenth stage of the Vuelta a Espana in a large escape group. The group of 23 got away about 50km into the stage.  Most of them made it together to the end, with the first attacks for the victory coming with 3 km to go.

    With a little more than 1km left , Bakelants took off in chase of three riders in the lead, when he smashed into the traffic island.  He sat on the pavement, saw his coach and burst into tears, according to Het Nieuwsblad.

    “I sat in sackcloth and ashes. I was just about to join the three riders in front when the traffic island appeared. The road surface was smoother than expected.  Ponferrada is a bitter memory for me, like L'Aquila last year in the Giro, where I was sure of winning.”

    Bakelants finished 20th, three seconds behind winner Michal Albasini of HTC-Highroad.

    In the 11th stage of the 2010 Giro d'Italia, Bakelants was also in a large, long escape group.  He broke out of it with two other on the approach to the finish – only to crash. The group came back together, the victory went to Katusha's Evgeny Petrov and Bakelants finished seven seconds down in 10th place.

  • Fatigued Phinney looking forward to Worlds

    Taylor Phinney (BMC) is in his first grand tour.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 9:47 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Young BMC American pleased with first Grand Tour performance

    Taylor Phinney (BMC) pulled out of this year’s Vuelta on stage 13 citing fatigue. The American will now turn his attention to the Worlds, where he will hope to represent his country in the individual time trial.

    The Vuelta marked Phinney’s debut grand tour and the under23 world time trial champion secured a top five place in the individual time trial.

    “Initially, the goal was to come here and do the first 10 stages and be able to go into the time trial with relatively good legs and get a result. We completed that and I was really satisfied with the way the first 10 days went. Going into the first rest day I was thinking I could make it another week. But I really suffered the past couple of days and today was just kind of a breaking point, so to speak,” he said.

    “I gave it everything I could, but now I have to look forward to getting to the world championships and not draining myself too much for that. I feel like I've gotten a real good experience out of the twelve-and-a-half stages I've done here. I'm disappointed I'm not able to continue, but I thank the staff and riders for understanding that today I couldn't do it.

    Phinney endured a difficult start to his debut season as a professional. He suffered from injuries but by his own admission failed to focus on life as a rider and all the demands it places on an athlete. However, in the second half of the season he has raised his game, paying back some of the faith BMC had in signing him last year.

    The coming weeks will all be about recovery and fine-tuning his...

  • Andersen denies knowledge of Leopard-RadioShack merger

    Kim Andersen gives out the orders for the day
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 10:24 BST
    Cycling News

    Dane says team has performed well in 2011

    Kim Andersen says he has no comment and no information on the possible merger of Leopard Trek and RadioShack.  The Leopard Trek sports director said that he knows nothing about the story, but denies that there are problems at the team.

    L'Equipe reported earlier that the teams would merge and operate under Johan Bruyneel's leadership.  Further rumours had Leopard Trek manager Brian Nygaard becoming press spokesman for the new GreenEdge team.

    Nygaard has not commented on the stories.  “I cannot comment on  Brian's situation,” Andersen told the Ritzau news agency.  “He is in his office and you may call and ask him.”

    He also refused to comment on the general situation, or on the rumour that team financier Fabio Becca has put pressure on Nygaard because the Dane has still not found a name sponsor for the team.

    “It's not something I know anything about, but I've been out at the races,” Andersen said.  He denied being under any pressure himself.  “No, I am not under much pressure. I don't have anything like that.”

    He added the team is doing well right now.  “It is going well in Spain.  It went well in Colorado and the Tour was good, and the same with the Tour of Denmark.  So there is not much to complain about.”

    The team has 22 victories this season, including stages at both the Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana.  Six of those wins have come from Fabian Cancellara.  Brothers Andy and Fränk Schleck finished second and third in the...

  • Geox still looking for first Vuelta stage win

    Juanjo Cobo feels no cold - and certainly not after this stage as his nerve endings will have frozen off.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 11:07 BST
    Cycling News

    Looking to Sastre to climb well on the Angliru?

    Despite a strong showing on stage 13, Geox-TMC are still looking for their first stage win in this year’s Vuelta. With two race-defining stages on Saturday and Sunday the team will look to strengthen their GC aspirations with Juan Jose Cobo in 8th, at 1:27 and Denis Menchov in 17th, at 2:56. The team also lie within touching distance of the teams’ classification, just over a minute down on RadioShack, and with Leopard Trek sandwiched in between.

    "We raced very well tactically-speaking for the whole stage. Unfortunately we didn't grab a win that would have been very important for our team," Sports Director Joxean Fernandez Matxin said after stage 13.

    "Both Cobo and Menchov stayed within the group of the best riders without ever putting their position in the overall standings at risk," Matxin also said, while discussing the performance of the rest of the team.

    The team’s hopes of claiming the team’s classification could rest on the shoulders of riders Carlos Sastre and Fabio Duarte. Sastre made it into the main break on stage 13 but has been off the pace in this year’s race. Still, the former Tour de France winner has experience of handling the heavy Vuelta mountains, especially the infamous Angliru, which features on Sunday.

    The climb was last used in 2008 and saw Alberto Contador claim the stage on his way to the overall title. Sastre finished that day within the top ten and he may well have to produce a similar performance this weekend. Sastre had previously ridden the climb in 2002.

  • Fans can help design 2012 Giro d'Italia maglia rosa

    The newly-designed maglia rosa for the 2011 Giro d'Italia.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 12:08 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Tweets from fans and riders to appear on leader's jersey

    Cycling fans have their chance to help design next year’s maglia rosa for the Giro d’Italia. Italian manufacturer, Santini, who design the famous jersey, has come up with three designs, allowing fans to vote for their favourite.

    Santini and the Giro organisers have also opened a competition that allows fans to suggest messages that can be included on the jersey.

    Fans can tweet what the Giro means to them with #magliarosa. The best 10 will be printed on the jersey along with the best 10 tweets from professional riders. Entries close at the end of the month.  Fans can vote on which jersey they like here.

    2010 Giro d’Italia winner Ivan Basso (Liquigas Cannondale) was at the launch at Eurobike and gave a scintillating endorsement of the competition: "It is the dream of every Italian boy to win the Giro d'Italia and wear the maglia rosa, so for me to win it twice is, of course, is a dream come true. But I want to win it for a third time.”

    The Italian added: "Twitter and Facebook are very important to me because they allow me to keep in touch with my fans, especially the young ones." Basso is a regular Tweeter and recently Tweeted “Buongiorno da Colorado Springs …” and  “The 1st emotion,the 2nd glory,the 3rd...a dream #magliarosa”

    “I write naturally what comes to me in my mind. Some of my fans want to hear about the technical side of racing and others are more interested in me personally and I try to contact with both of these types of fans.”

    When asked what he'd tweet about the Giro, Basso thought long and hard before answering: “I will simple tweet that Ivan Basso wants to win a third Giro...

  • Scarponi quits Vuelta

    Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) was a popular figure at the start.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 14:29 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Italian abandons on stage 14

    Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) abandoned the Vuelta after 26 kilometers of racing on stage 14 from Astorga to La Farrapona. Lagos de Somiedo. The Italian cited overall fatigue for his failure to compete in the race.

    Scarponi had lost over 20 minutes to his GC rivals on stage 13 and was sitting in 37th position, 24:10 behind race leader Bradley Wiggins (Sky).

    "I could not recover energies: it wasn't possible to go on, even if leaving Vuelta it's a pain for me. I was at the Vuelta a Espana in order to try to add, to a long season, a second grand tour; I knew it would have been a difficult thing, but  good health was necessary and now I have not it. I'll try to evaluate with the team medical staff the causes of this problem and then I'll program the last races with the final in Giro di Lombardia,"

    In truth, though, Scarponi had struggled during this year’s race and was never in contention for a podium place once the race hit the mountains.

    On a parcours that suited him and with a second place in this year’s Giro d’Italia in his favour, he had been expected to challenge the likes of Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale) and Igor Anton (Euskaltel-Euskadi) for the overall title.

    Follow stage 14 live, here.

  • Bellis looking for a team in 2012

    Jonny Bellis (SaxoBank) back in race action.
    Article published:
    September 03, 2011, 19:40 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Brit hoping for races and a chance

    Jonny Bellis (Saxo Bank) is on the look out for a new team after he confirmed that he will not be part of Saxo Bank’s plans for next year. The British rider hopes to remain racing in Europe.

    Bellis has endured a supremely difficult last few years. In 2009 the 23-year-old was involved in a scooter accident that nearly cost him his life. Bellis lay in an Italian hospital bed, a tangle of tubes hanging from his 45-kilogramme frame. He couldn’t eat and only communicated via scrawled notes or rasped one-word instructions to his traumatized parents. Pronounced beyond help on his admission to hospital on September 19 and then told he would never walk again, he went on to make a remarkable recovery.

    He raced sporadically last season but further complications with his health including a further operation and a bout of bronchitis ruined his final season with Saxo Bank. Saxo Bank had given him a year-long contract extension in 2010.

    Bellis still hopes that the remaining few races he has left this year, starting with next week’s Paris-Brussels.

    “The team and Bjarne Riis stuck by me when I was ill and obviously I appreciate all the help but the situation is that I’m short of racing this year. After battling with my injuries and the accident my thoughts were always about returning to racing and I don’t want that to finish. I want to continue and build and even though I don’t have a team for next year I’m determined to carry on. I have a lot to offer,” he told Cyclingnews.

    “I’m back to full health now and there’s no outstanding issues. I just need a good winter behind me which is something I’ve not had for a number of years. So if I can...