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Second Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Date published:
June 07, 2011, 1:00 BST
  • Basso struggling for form at Critérium du Dauphiné

    Ivan Basso (Liquigas) is trying to find his form ahead of the Tour de France
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 10:52 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Italian loses three minutes on stage one

    Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale) has admitted that he is still suffering from the after-effects of his recent training crash in Sicily and that he has no aspirations of doing anything other than building form at the Critérium du Dauphiné.

    The Italian ceded over three minutes to winner Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Omega Pharma-Lotto) on the race’s opening road stage, which finished atop the climb to Saint-Pierre-de-Chartreuse. Basso had already struggled during Sunday’s prologue, finishing a lowly 102nd in his first race since the Tour de Romandie.

    “I’m too far behind to get a result,” Basso told Gazzetta dello Sport after stage one. “Three weeks ago I was in hospital, I don’t have the rhythm of the best riders.”

    Basso fell heavily during a training camp at Mount Etna in May, sustaining facial injuries. Although he only spent two days off the bike in the immediate aftermath of the crash, it took significantly longer for him to resume full training and he explained that he is behind in his preparation.

    “In cycling you can’t invent anything,” Basso said. “But the base is there. You just need to have patience, and I do.”

    Rather than compete for the overall classification, therefore, Basso is at the Dauphiné with the sole intention of gauging his form ahead of the Tour de France. He was dropped as soon as the pace went up on a notch on the shallow climb to the finish on Monday's stage, but he insisted that...

  • Mørkøv plans at least one title at the Danish nationals

    Michael Morkov
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 11:49 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Time trial easier than trying to control road race, Saxo Bank-SunGard rider says

    Michael Mørkøv plans to win at least one title at the Danish national championships the end of this month. The Saxo Bank-SunGard rider believes that a time trial title is more likely than road race victory, but he is aiming to be very competitive in both.

    Mørkøv rider has won numerous national track titles, but to date none on the road. His team has usually dominated the road race, but this year there are many Danish riders on other teams, such as Alex Rasmussen and Lars Bak at HTC-Highroad, Matti Breschel at Rabobank and Jakob Fuglsang at Leopard-Trek, amongst others.

    “The race will be different than it has been in recent years, and I think it will be a very interesting one,” he told feltet.dk. “In previous years, we have had the opportunity to control the race. I don't think we can do so this year, so it is important that we should be at the forefront from the start.

    “But there is also some luck and the lottery of it, so for me it is just about getting the best possible form, then trying to get the best result.”

    The Dane maintains that he has a better chance in the time trial. However, he admitted that “it was a bit demoralizing to be passed by Alex (Rasmussen) in the final time trial at the Giro. But I bet I will be fresher at the nationals than I was in Milan. So I'd like to battle both him and Fuglsang to the finish.”

  • Millar calls for closure in Armstrong and Contador investigations

    David Millar (Garmin - Cervelo)
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 12:45 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Scot criticises Armstrong for not doing enough against doping

    David Millar has called for closure in both the FDA investigation into Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador’s Clenbuterol positive at the 2010 Tour de France.

    Millar was speaking at the presentation of his autobiography in London. Called ‘Racing through the darkness: the fall and rise of David Millar’, the book details Millar’s account of his own doping, his personal problems when he was caught and his eventual return to the sport as a staunch advocate against doping.

    He criticised Armstrong for failing to take a similar strong stance during his career.

    “I can’t say definitively if Lance doped or not. Yes, there are all the stories and rumours but I certainly never saw him dope with my own eyes. If he did dope, after all he has said and done, it would be unforgivable,” Millar told the Telegraph newspaper.

    Armstrong is under investigation by the Federal Drug Administration as part of a wider investigation into possible financial fraud at the US Postal Service team. Armstrong has always denied doping but has been accused by former teammates Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton.

    “His performances on the Tour were extraordinary but he is unlike anybody you will ever meet. He is a force of nature. But I have always thought that he could have done more against doping. He was in a position to make a difference and to help his sport but I never saw any evidence of that.”

    “The entire Lance thing – did he dope or didn’t he dope – is suffocating the sport and obscuring a lot of good developments,” Millar said. “The only resolution is to let the FDA investigation take its full course and for that to be the final word on the...

  • Riccò registered with Merdiana-Kamen team

    Riccardo Riccò (Meridiana-Kamen)
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 13:27 BST
    By:
    Stephen Farrand

    Controversial Italian set to ride the Tour of Serbia

    Riccardo Riccò has been registered with the small Meridiana-Kamen team by the UCI, meaning he can now ride the Tour of Serbia that begins on June 13.

    Riccò’s name has been added to the team’s roster on the UCI website and team manager Antonio Giallorenzo confirmed to Cyclingnews that Riccò will make his return to racing in Serbia before possibly riding other races in Italy, Germany and even France.

    Riccò has not raced since finishing seventh in the GP Cycliste La Marseilllaise on January 30. A week later, he was rushed to hospital near his home on Modena after suffering a serious kidney failure. According to reports in Gazzetta dello Sport, the doctor who first visited Riccò told police that the Italian rider had admitted to undergoing a blood transfusion a few hours before he became ill. Riccò has always denied this, claiming he was too ill to say anything to the doctor but he was sacked by the Vacansoleil team soon after.

    “Riccò is a good guy, who wants to rebuild his career and race again,” Antonio Giallorenzo told Cyclingnews.

    “I’ve spent time with him recently and he’s not the devil that everyone describes him as. He’s got the face of an angel and is always friendly and well behaved. We hope he can help us develop the team. We’re based in the south of Italy but all the local riders have to move north to turn professional. We hope he can help us grow and go on to ride a grand tour.

    “At the moment Riccò hasn’t been found guilty of anything and so just like other riders it's right that he’s allowed to race again. The UCI has given him a licence and so he will ride the Tour of Serbia. After...

  • Video: Amgen Tour of California lead out to victory

    Matt Goss (HTC-Highroad) nails it in Thousand Oaks.
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 14:08 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Howard leads out Goss

    The final stage of this year's Tour of California finished in a bunch sprint with HTC-Highroad's Matt Goss taking the victory.

    Goss was expertly led out by his teammate Leigh Howard, who was fitted out with a bike mounted GoPro HD Hero camera (see Race tech: New gear at the 2011 Amgen Tour of California for more).

    You can see from the following footage how impressive Howard was in bringing Goss to the front when it mattered. Goss goes past Howard at 28 seconds, with second place getter Peter Sagan passing on the right of screen just moments later.

     

  • Le coq sportif to provide Tour de France jerseys for 2012

    Andy Shcleck (Saxo Bank)
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 15:06 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    French clothing company to supply all ASO-organized races

    Le coq sportif will return as official supplier of sports clothing to the Tour de France and all races sponsored by the Amaury Sports Organisation as of 2012, the company announced on Tuesday. Nike currently supply jerseys at the Tour de France.

    The French manufacturer previously supplied team jerseys to the Tour. “For forty years, the most famous riders, from Jacques Anquetil to Bernard Hinault and Eddy Merckx, pulled on jerseys bearing the le coq sportif logo.”

    "Next year, the firm will once again be the Tour's official supplier, and provide the special leaders' jerseys, as “the perfect gift to celebrate the brand's 130th anniversary.”

    The firm will also provide the jerseys for the other ASO races, which include the Vuelta a Espana, Paris-Nice, Paris-Roubaix, and the Criterium du Dauphine.

    The “new jerseys” for next year's race will be presented at the Tour route presentation in October.

    Madame Camuset, of the firm's founding family, noted that the 1951 Tour passed by the factory in Romilly.  “I can quite clearly remember that it was a proud day for the le coq sportif brand, to see the team jerseys hung out above the route. All of the residents of Romilly took to the streets to see the cyclists and also the jerseys which were manufactured by the workers in the le coq sportif plant - who took great pride in their efforts."

  • Fizik launches Kurve saddle range

    fizik product director Vincent Bourgeois shows off the three-layer composite hull of the new Kurve saddle
    Article published:
    June 07, 2011, 18:51 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    R3SL shoe to be launched at Eurobike

    Italian saddle maker fi'zi:k today unveiled a new range of high-end saddles. Dubbed Kurve, the new saddles use a significantly different design from previous fi'zi:k seats, with aluminium rails supporting a composite body.

    The idea, according to Vincent Bourgeois, product director of fi'zi:k's parent company Selle Royal, is to take the level of comfort offered by fi'zi:k's saddles to the next level. Bourgeois says that with previous saddle developments, fi'zi:k feels they have taken conventional saddle design as far as it can go. The idea of Kurve is to find further improvements by making a saddle that moves with the rider, extending the previous Twinflex and Wingflex ideas of the Aliante and Arione saddles to the whole body of the saddle.

    To that end, fi'zi:k has designed a saddle hull that's moulded from three layers of composite, topped with a thin layer of padding, and supported by aluminium rails forged into a single loop.

    Unlike previous fi'zi:k saddles - and indeed those from just about every other manufacturer - the support and comfort provided by the Kurve comes only from the hull, says Bourgeois. The padding is, in effect, just there to protect you from the bare composites, and not to cushion or cosset your bum.

    To allow the hull to do this, it has been carefully designed to be soft in some areas, harder and more supportive in others. Fi'zi:k calls this design re:flex and it's the result of three years of development.

    A conventional rail design would hold hack the potential of the new saddle, say Bourgeois, because it supports the rear of the saddle close to the contact area with the rider's sitbones. Instead, the Kurve design supports the hull right at the rear, effectively suspending the rider in the middle of the hull.

    The Kurve saddles are topped with a layer of padding and microfiber which starts as one flat sheet and is heat-moulded to fit the top of the saddle. The heat-moulding process allows...