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Second Edition Cycling News, Thursday, May 13, 2010

Date published:
May 13, 2010, 1:00 BST
  • Surgery successful for Hushovd

    Thor Hushovd (Cervelo TestTeam) speaks to Norwegian TV
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 15:37 BST
    Cycling News

    Cervelo sprinter recovering at home

    Cervélo TestTeam's Thor Hushovd had surgery to repair his broken collarbone on Monday, and is now recovering at home in Monaco, his team announced today.

    Hushovd broke his collarbone when he hit a pedestrian who was crossing the road. The girl was uninjured.

    The Norwegian travelled to Basel, Switzerland for the operation on his clavicle.

    “The surgery went pretty well. It was more complicated than actually expected,” said Hushovd. “I had a good day after the operation but yesterday I had a little bit more pain. Yesterday I flew home, and I’m happy to be back home now in Monaco, to start the recovery process and spend some time with my family.”

    Team doctor Andreas Goesele said, “It will take time for Thor to fully recover. It was a difficult fracture but he had a good surgery at the CrossKlinik in Basel. I am very pleased that he could have the operation here, where we have perfect surroundings and the best staff. The recovery phase will start today already, with some indoor training at Thor’s home in Monaco.”

    The injury set back preparations for Hushovd's defense of the green points jersey he won in the 2009 Tour de France.

  • More bad news for Kohler

    Martin Kohler (BMC) is the leader of the Young Rider Classification.
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 18:06 BST
    Cycling News

    Fractured wrist in addition to broken collarbone

    Martin Kohler of BMC Racing Team underwent successful surgery on his broken collarbone only to receive an unpleasant surprise. It was discovered that he had also broken a bone in his wrist. The Swiss rider will be out of racing for an undisclosed period of time.

    Kohler crashed in the second stage of the Giro d'Italia on Sunday in the Netherlands.

    A metal plate with screws was set into the fractured collarbone on Tuesday at the Schulthess Clinic in Zurich. However, when he woke up again, "I was in extreme pain," he said.

    The broken wrist bone was then discovered. "That was a big shock for me. Now the hand has to be immobilised with a splint for six weeks. At most, I'll be able to train on the stationary bike," he said. It was unclear when he would ride again, or if he would be able to return to racing at all this season.

  • Motivated Arashiro makes breakaway succeed

    Yukiya Arashiro (Bbox Bouygues Telecom) nearly pulled off a victory in stage five.
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 18:09 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Japanese BBox rider promises more attacks at the Giro

    It was Yukiya Arashiro's acceleration with 1.2km to go that made the three-man breakaway of stage 5 in the Giro d'Italia a success. As the leading trio were on the verge of being swept up by the peloton, the 25-year-old BBox Bouygues Telecom rider breathed new life into a seemingly doomed escape.

    "Before the second to last curve, I saw the peloton wasn't far behind," Arashiro said. "That's why I accelerated. But [Jérôme] Pineau came on my wheel, and also the Cofidis rider [Julien Fouchard]. Without my move, we would have been caught."

    Arashiro told Cyclingnews on the start line in Novara: "My condition is good, so I'm gonna make a breakaway today." So he did. But he never believed it would be a successful one until the race approached the finishing town of Novi Ligure. "There was a small hill close to the finish," Arashiro said. "I gave it my all there in order to gain some time."

    Arashiro was thrilled in the finale. "I was thinking of all the Japanese people who are watching the Giro d'Italia on J-Sport," he said. "This was my main source of motivation. I could imagine everyone in Japan shouting while I accelerated towards the finish. It gave me a lot of strength."

    Arashiro is now experienced enough to know how to make a breakaway a success. "Had we taken too big of a lead too early, it would have made the bunch chase earlier, so we set a slower tempo than what we could have done for a while," said the rider from Okinawa. Pineau added: "The success of this breakaway isn't just pure luck. We rode almost at 60km/h during the last 15 kilometres."

    When he rode for the Continental Japanese team Meitan-Hompo, Arashiro was known for his numerous breakaways. "Last year the Tour de France was my first chance for riding a Grand Tour but I never managed to enter a breakaway," he said, although he made the record books for finishing fifth in stage 2 in a bunch sprint finish. "Therefore, I'm happy to at least...

  • Nibali enjoys his first day in the maglia rosa

    Liquigas - Doimo teammates Vincenzo Nibali and Ivan Basso occupy first and second on GC.
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 18:20 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Young Italian proud to ride on Coppi's home roads in pink

    Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Doimo) was able to enjoy his first day in the maglia rosa as the Giro d'Italia remembered the legendary Fausto Coppi in his home town of Novi Ligure on the 50th anniversary of his death.

    The 25-year-old Italian finished 28th on the stage, near the front of the peloton to avoid any splits and crashes, but out of the way of the sprinters and their lead-out trains.

    "Today was a quiet day. We rode well early on to keep the race under control and then in the finale the race came alive and the sprinter's teams did the work. I stayed well protected near the front with Ivan Basso. Fortunately nobody crashed but a lot of riders wanted to stay near the front and there were riders taking a lot of risks. It wasn't as easy at it might have seemed."

    Nibali wore pink shorts and pink glasses but admitted the race organisers had struggled to find a pink jersey that fit him.

    "They gave me a small at first but it was too big, so I've no got an extra-small. I've had four pink jerseys all together, although I gave one to Faustino Coppi (the son of Fausto Coppi).

    "I slept with the pink jersey resting on my suitcase after reading a lot of emails and messages from friends and people in my fan club. One of the nicest was from former teammate Andrea Noe', saying: 'Now you know what it's like to wear the pink jersey.'

    "He's right, it's pretty special. It takes up a lot of time but it's worth it. I don't want to make any predictions about how long I can keep it because it could bring bad luck. I don't know if I can win the Giro but I'll try and keep the jersey for as long as possible."

    Remembering Coppi

    The stage passed through the tiny village of Castellania where Fausto Coppi was born and ended close to the museum dedicated to Coppi and earlier cycling legend Costante Girardengo, who won the Giro d'Italia twice and Milan-San Remo six times.

    Nibali admitted he had...

  • Pineau experienced depression before returning as a winner

    Jerome Pineau (Quick Step) wins stage five in Novi Ligure, part of a 3-man break which held off the field by seconds.
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 18:56 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Move to Quick Step key for Frenchman's Giro stage win

    It's been five years since a Frenchman last won a stage at the Giro d'Italia, Christophe Le Mével on stage 17 in Varazze in 2005, and six years since Jerome Pineau last won a race, but Pineau put an end to both dry spells today in Novi Ligure.

    After Pineau claimed victory in stage 5 at the Giro d'Italia, the 30-year-old Frenchman revealed that he had to overcome depression and later moved to Quick Step to regain confidence and become a winner again.

    Hailing from Nantes in the west of France, Pineau turned professional with Bonjour, the team of his region of origin, in 2002. In his first year he rode the Tour de France and finished second in stage 10 behind compatriot Patrice Halgand.

    "In 2003 and 2004, I wrongly thought that cycling was easy," the Frenchman said of his past. "I even made the podium at World Cup level races (third at the 2004 Züri-Metzgete) and I was the highest ranked Frenchman on the UCI classification. But I lost my head. I went into depression in 2005. I went under therapy, after which I needed a transition year."

    Pineau was known at Bouygues Telecom for his mouth to do the talking much more than his legs. When team busses remained closed and cycling champions stayed silent, reporters only had to question Pineau and they were sure to have something to write about. But it wasn't about him winning races.

    "I needed to change teams," Pineau said. "I've had great directeur sportifs before but at Quick Step I've found a staff that has understood how to motivate me. Had I stayed where I was I'm not sure I would have achieved what I've done today." When he signed for the Belgian team, he made a comparison with football, the sport he's a fan of: "This is like transferring from FC Nantes to AC Milan.

    "Three weeks ago I called [Quick Step coach] Luca [Guercilena] and I told him the Giro would be the right race to bring me confidence back. I had a disappointing Ardennes classics campaign,"...

  • No paint on Amgen Tour of California roads

    The 2010 Tour of California route.
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 19:25 BST
    Kirsten Frattini

    Organiser pleas for messages in chalk only

    Organisers of the upcoming Amgen Tour of California are asking spectators and fans to refrain from using paint to write traditional road messages for the bike race and its participants along route. Race technical director Chuck Hodge encourages the use of non-permanent products such as chalk instead.

    “Please don't use any paint on the roads,” Hodge said. “Chalk is OK and encouraged, just be safe about applying it! Please be respectful of local residents, we are only borrowing their roads for the day. Park legally and pack out your trash.”

    Writing riders names, phrases and messages along race routes, particularly on the mountain climbs, is a typical way for fans to show their support and welcome the bike race to town. Hodge is sympathetic to the sport’s traditions and is not oppose to messages written on the roads, as long as they are written with a removable product.

    “Especially in the first three years we had a lot of complaints,” Hodge said. “I know that it is the traditional thing to do in races like the Tour de France, to write someone’s name in big letters. However, a lot of municipalities that the Tour of California passes through don’t really like it. We had some issues with some of the jurisdictions that we went through.

    “It’s a cool thing on race day, we are all cycling fans and appreciate the tradition but when we are gone the next day, the locals don’t want to drive up the roads and see Levi’s name in six-foot high letters every time,” he added.

    This year the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) has included a clause that prohibits the use of permanent paint on the roads along the Tour of California route.

    “As in the past we have some nervous counties and Caltrans people who don't want to see any paint on the roads this year,” Hodge said. “As a matter of fact this was written into...

  • Farrar accepts defeat in Novi Ligure

    Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) is guided to the podium after his win
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 19:47 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Garmin-Transition rider goes close to taking red points jersey

    Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) won the sprint for fourth place on stage five at the Giro d'Italia, showing he is perhaps the fastest sprinter in the race, but that was little consolation for the American after the peloton failed to catch the three-man breakaway before the finish in Novi Ligure.

    Farrar stopped to thank his teammates as he headed back to the finish area, thinking he had perhaps taken the red points jersey from Graeme Brown. However, even that escaped his grasp by the tiniest margin, with stage winner Jerome Pineau (Quick Step) pulling on the jersey. The two both have 39 points but Pineau got it thanks to his stage victory.

    "I won the sprint behind but it's not quite the same when you're sprinting for fourth place. We did the best we could but the break was really strong and held us off, so good on them," Farrar told Cyclingnews.

    The Lampre-Farnese Vini team complained that other teams did not help control the break in the second half of the stage, preferring to wait for the sprint. Farrar refuted their claims.

    "We chased almost all day. We had guys in the rotation, so I don't think anyone could complain about that. We tried hard to win it. The peloton chased full gas in the finale for a long time. But they earned that win today, those guys. It was definitely not a freebie."

    With flat stages so infrequent in this year's Giro d'Italia, Farrar will probably have to wait until next Monday's stage to Cava De' Tirreni, near Naples, for another chance for victory. Thursday's stage to Marina di Carrara includes two late climbs. Some sprinters may hang on to the bunch but it will be very difficult for their teams to control any late attacks.

  • Stetina relishes role for Amgen Tour of California

    Peter Stetina (Garmin-Transitions) in full leg warmers
    Article published:
    May 13, 2010, 19:49 BST
    Kirsten Frattini

    Garmin-Transitions rider to work for Danielson and Zabriskie

    Garmin-Transitions granted Peter Stetina, the newest and youngest member of the ProTour team, a start spot in the Amgen Tour of California, which kick off on Sunday, May 16, in Nevada City. The talented climber is relishing over the tough domestique duties expected of him for teammates and top contenders Dave Zabriskie, Tom Danielson and Ryder Hesjedal.

    “This race is number one on my calendar,” Stetina told Cyclingnews. “My season goal was to make the Tour of California roster. Being on an American ProTour team, this is one of the most important races in the entire year for us.”

    “I am close to my top ever form just to make the roster and be able to help Zabriskie, Danielson and Hesjedal,” he added. “I think we are going with a great team and we have ambitions of winning.”

    Stetina, 23, signed on with Garmin-Transitions following a successful 2009 season with its Under 23 counterpart Holowesko Partners. He is entering the Tour of California well-prepared with nearly 30 race days under his belt. In his first year as a ProTour rider, he has participated in the Vuelta Ciclista a La Murcia, Volta Catalunya, GP Miguel Indurain, Vuelta al Pais Vasco, La Fleche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege.

    “Every race I’ve done has been the biggest race of my life and then I go to the next one and I think, ‘oh no, this is the biggest one,’ Stetina said. “I’ve been a student. It’s been a lot of no pressure so far. I’ve been in a lot of races with Zabriskie and Hesjedal so I’m pretty much just told to race for the breakaway and also help out by positioning the guys around or by going back to get bottles.”

    At the Amgen Tour, Stetina will have his hands full riding in support of Dave Zabriskie, who placed second to three-time defending champion Levi Leipheimer (Team RadioShack) last year. The remaining roster includes Tom Danielson, Ryder...