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Second Edition Cycling News, Thursday, July 18, 2013

Date published:
July 18, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Cameron Meyer re-signs with Orica GreenEdge

    Cameron Meyer (Orica GreenEdge)
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 10:10 BST
    Cycling News

    Australian grateful of the support to pursue GC ambitions

    Orica GreenEdge announced Wednesday that Cameron Meyer has re-signed for another two seasons.

    The 25-year-old has so far this year finished in the top 10 of the Tour de Suisse, sixth overall at the Tour of Turkey and fifth overall at the Tour of California.

    "We're very happy with the progression we've seen from Cam this year," said sport director Matt White, who previously worked with Meyer at Garmin in his first seasons as a road professional. "This is the first year that he hasn't had track obligations. In the past, he's had to divide his attention between the track and the road. This year was his first full road season, and despite an injury that required an adjustment to his early season schedule, we've seen huge gains in his developments."

    Meyer explained that being able to pursue general classification ambitions played a big role in his decision to stay with the Australian-registered outfit.

    "If I were to go to another team with big leaders, I wouldn't get the sort of support I've had here," he said. "The team gave me responsibility in Turkey, California and Switzerland, and they offered up the full team to back up this responsibility."

    Meyer said that he has enjoyed being part of the first Australian WorldTour team.

    "It's been great to be part of something new and exciting for Australia," said Meyer. "Every result feels extra special because we have a whole country behind us. Sometimes it feels like all of Australia is following our results and cheering for us. It gives me a little extra motivation to have so much support back home. I've really appreciated being part of a team that's in the habit of creating cycling history."

  • Sayar suggests French conspiracy in EPO positive

    Mustafa Sayar (Torku Sekerspor)
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 10:45 BST
    José Been

    Tour of Turkey winner says results would be different outside French lab

    Mustafa Sayar, winner of this year's Tour of Turkey, spoke to the Turkish media for the first time after the news came out of his positive doping test. The 24-year old Turkish rider of continental Team Konya Torku Seker Sport denies having used banned substances and doubts the findings of the French anti-doping lab in Chatenay Malabry.

    "I didn't use doping. The laboratory in France made mistakes because I beat several French riders in the Tour of Turkey. If my urine was tested in another laboratory, the result would have been negative," Sayar said.

    The 24-year old Sayar was the surprising winner of this year's Tour of Turkey, a 2.HC event. He beat Europcar's Natnael Berhane by 41 seconds.. His win to the sanctuary of Selcuk raised eyebrows across the peloton, resulting in a tweet by Marcel Kittel "I was not often in my life so angry about a result of someone else. And I see many people around me feeling the same."

    In an interview with Sayar points his finger at the French anti-doping lab in Chatenay-Malabry where his samples from the Tour of Algeria were tested. A urine sample from March 11 flagged a positive for EPO.

    "They opened my B-sample because they said the A-sample was not big enough after they used it for testosterone testing. I don't believe that. I gave 170cc of urine. Even after the testosterone tests which came back normal, there should have been enough for other testing. There are other things going on that I can not understand."

    The Turkish rider who contacted a Spanish lawyer to investigate his right for appeal, contradicts the press release the UCI sent out on Monday whch stated that the rider has the right to request analysis of his...

  • Team Sky releases Froome's power data

    Tour de France leader Chris Froome (Sky) fronts a packed media conference
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 10:48 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    French power expert Grappe says his performances are consistent

    Team Sky has given French newspaper L'Equipe and respected French physiologist Frederic Grappe access to two years of Chris Froome's power data, with Grappe saying that the Tour de France leader's power data indicates that his performances are consistent.

    During a press conference on Monday, Team Sky manager Dave Brailsford called on the media to help find a way that could perhaps prove that Froome is clean and so end the doubts and speculation about his performance. He suggested that WADA could appoint an expert to study blood values, weight and power data to somehow validate performance. It seems that WADA has said it cannot help and so Team Sky opted to show the power data to Equipe and Grappe.

    It is not known if Grappe or other experts have also studied Froome's blood values and compared data from 2011-2013 to data from earlier in his career, before he emerged as a Grand Tour contender.

    Grappe has long made his own calculations on rider performance with a complex model. Other physiologist such as Antoine Vayer are more aggressive in their methodology and have made more direct accusations in the past. Grappe is more cautious with his analysis.

    Speaking to Equipe about Froome's data, Grappe suggested that Froome's power indicate that his performances were consistent during 2011-2013 and similar to other riders he has studied.

    Equipe claim that the comparison between his data and the data provided by Team Sky indicates a margin of error of just 2.5%.

    Grappe gave his...

  • Win a SRAM Red 22 groupset with Cyclingnews Tour Tracker

    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 13:36 BST
    Cycling News

    One winner to be awarded after 122,222th download

    Download the free Cyclingnews Tour Tracker app and be in with a chance to win a SRAM Red 22 groupset. We're planning on giving one away to one of our users as soon as we hit 122,222 downloads - just hit the 'more' tab in the app to find out how to enter.

    The Tour Tracker App gives minute by minute commentary on the Tour de France action and split updates. You can navigate to standings in each jersey competition, view the course profile and view selected riders’ TrainingPeaks power data analysis.

    It’s the top app to follow the action and riders and analyse the race route and the stakes up for grabs.

    Download the app from iTunes or from Google Play.

  • Froome penalised 20 seconds for illegal feeding

    Tour de France leader Chris Froome (Sky)
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 18:07 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Team Sky rider still manages to extend his lead at Alpe d'Huez

    Chris Froome (Team Sky) has been penalised 20 seconds by the Tour de France race judges after the stage to Alpe d'Huez for illegally taking an energy bar from the team car in the final kilometres of the stage.

    Under UCI race rules, feeding from a team car is only allowed before the final part of a stage for road safety reasons. For the finish on Alpe d'Huez, feeding was banned six kilometres from the finish. However Froome became desperate about taking on some fuel in the final five kilometres of the climb, and ate some food that teammate Richie Porte had collected from the team car.

    The Australian was also penalised 20 seconds according to an official race communiqué. Team Sky directeur sportif Nicolas Portal was also penalised. He was fined 1000 Swiss francs. Froome and Porte were fined 200 Swiss francs.

    Froome finished the stage 57 seconds ahead of Alberto Contador but his time gain was later cut to 37 seconds. However the 20-second time penalty had little effect on Froome's overall race lead. He now leads Contador by 5:11. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) is third overall at 5:32.

    Froome tried to limit the significance of his problems in the final kilometres, revealing that the Team Sky car had suffered some kind of mechanical problem and so had struggled to feed them before the start of the final climb.

    "At the end of the day a rule is a rule and if I’ve been given 20 seconds I’ll have to take that, but if you look at the technicality it was actually Richie Porte who fed from the car not myself. I fed from Richie Porte so maybe that’s something that needs to be taken in consideration," he said.

    "I’m just happy to get through the stage and come out of it with...

  • Riblon gets maiden victory for France

    Christophe Riblon (Ag2r) celebrates an epic stage win on Alpe d'Huez
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 19:00 BST
    Barry Ryan

    Ag2r-La Mondiale rider defends Froome

    Before the Tour de France, French hopes rested mainly on the shoulders of a young generation of emerging talent but after a barren two and a half weeks, it was the veteran Christophe Riblon (Ag2r-La Mondiale) who broke the home nation's duck with a gritty win atop Alpe d'Huez.

    A stage winner at Ax 3 Domaines in the Pyrenees three years ago to the day, Riblon had failed to record a victory since but the 32-year-old from the periphery of Paris could scarcely have chosen a grander platform upon which to end his own personal drought, as the Tour climbed Alpe d'Huez twice in the same day.

    In the end, it was the knowledge garnered from the first ascent of the famous climb that helped Riblon time his effort to claim stage victory. Part of a break which also featured Tejay van Garderen (BMC), Riblon had seen the American attack the first time up the Alpe only to fade towards the summit and rejoin his pursuers.

    As Riblon chipped away at a 40-second deficit to van Garderen with five kilometres still to go the second time around, his directeur sportif Julien Jurdie pulled up alongside him in the team car with some timely words of encouragement.

    "I knew that I couldn't follow van Garderen when he attacked at the bottom of the climb," Riblon said. "But I'd limited my losses to him on the first time up the Alpe and that gave me some hope. With five kilometres to go, Julien Jurdie came up to me and told me to believe. He said van Garderen had faded the first time up the climb and would do it again."

    Riblon edged his way up to van Garderen's wheel with a shade over three kilometres to go, and he immediately realised that his prey was no longer climbing with the...

  • Froome happy to come through Alpe d'Huez stage unscathed

    Richie Porte helped Chris Froome to the line
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 19:53 BST
    Daniel Benson

    Sky rider reacts to analysis of power data

    Despite losing time to Nairo Quintana and Joaqium Rodriguez on stage 18 to Alpe d’Huez, Chris Froome held firm in yellow and put further time into his chief rival Alberto Contador in the Tour de France overall classification.

    Froome lost contact with Quintana and Rodriguez in the closing stages of the climb but by that point Contador had already been distanced. Froome finished 1:06 down on Quintana and Rodriguez but now has a buffer of 5:11 over Contador, who clings to second place, just 21 seconds ahead of Quintana.

    Even a 20-second penalty for taking a feed inside the final kilometres couldn’t put a dampener on Froome, who, with the help of Richie Porte, managed to keep a bout of hunger knock under control as he limited his losses and crossed the line in seventh.

    "I’m just happy to get through the stage and come out of it with more of an advantage than I went into it," the race leader said.

    "If that was a bad day for me then I’ll definitely accept that. I’m just really thankful of the way my team rode today. They really were great, especially Richie Porte in the final. He’s put aside all his ambitions to help me keep the yellow jersey and he stayed with me all the way until the final today even though I was having a tough day."

    Saxo-Tinkoff came into the stage knowing that they had to unsettle Froome early on in the stage if they were to remount a serious challenge for the overall. Several early attacks were nullified, with Froome himself closing gaps. Nicolas Roche and Sergio Paulinho were sent up the road in a bid to possibly create a launch pad for Contador but they were dragged back on the first ascent of Alpe d’Huez.

    When Contador and Roman Kreuziger managed to break clear...

  • Quintana climbs to third in Tour GC on Alpe d'Huez

    Nairo Quintana (Movistar) attacks the maillot jaune
    Article published:
    July 18, 2013, 20:40 BST
    Sadhbh O'Shea

    Colombian hoping to challenge Contador for second

    After a strong performance on the slopes of Alpe d'Huez, Nairo Quintana moved himself into an overall podium position at the 2013 Tour de France.

    "I'm very happy," said the Movistar rider at the finish. "I was fighting to make a good race. For this achievement I want to thank my team and my teammates, the soigneurs, everybody in the team for getting me on the podium."

    Throughout much - if not all - of this year's Tour de France, the Quintana has kept us all talking about his superior climbing abilities. The 23-year-old Colombian has been irrepressible in the mountains and it proved to be more of the same on Alpe d'Huez. Quintana was the first of the general classification riders to cross the finish line, just over two minutes down on the day's winner Christophe Riblon. More importantly he put time into Bauke Mollema (Belkin) and Roman Kreuziger (Saxo-Tinkoff) - who was sent back to help his team leader Alberto Contador.

    There was much discussion as to whether the riders would be allowed go down the Col de Sarenne, and if we would even see the dual ascension of Alpe d'Huez. In the end we were treated to some great action, but unlike in previous races Quintana stayed safely inside the bunch until the final selection began to take place. He latched onto an attack from the yellow jersey Chris Froome, who looked like he was going for his fourth stage victory.

    With the group nearing the top of the day's second Alpe d'Huez ascent Froome struggled with his energy levels. The Colombian left behind a struggling Froome, to take fourth place on the day.

    "I saw him [Froome] in a little bit of difficulty," Quintana explained. "But he had Richie Porte from his team and I had already had a time advantage so for me it was all about...