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Second Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Date published:
June 08, 2010, 1:00 BST
  • Australia announces worlds long lists

    Richie Porte (Saxo Bank) gets the pink jersey and the kisses
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 9:42 BST
    Cycling News

    Eligible men make for powerful possibilities on home turf

    Cycling Australia has announced a long list for the elite men's squads to contest the UCI Road World Championships on home soil from September 29 to October 3.

    While the world titles are more than three months away, the lists reflect those riders who are eligible to compete in the elite and under 23 men's races in Geelong and Melbourne in late September.

    According to the federation, "riders not included in the squads have the opportunity to be added on the basis of their performances prior to the announcement in August of the elite men's long team and U23 men's team."

    There could be some new faces in the final lineup, including Richie Porte, who recently starred at the Giro d'Italia, winning the best young rider title after spending several days in the race lead (pictured above).

    Luke Roberts is back in contention for a place, having spent the last few years on the periphery due to illness and injury. He has enjoyed a solid comeback with German ProTour squad Milram and could be an asset to the team due to his powerful style and track background.

    The inclusion of Brett Lancaster on the long list is also being welcomed after the Cervélo TestTeam rider enjoyed a win at the recent Amgen Tour of California which indicated a return to some of the Olympic gold medalist's best form.

    In the under 23 ranks, exciting 19-year-old rider Michael Matthews has been named in the long list after enjoying a fantastic season thus far. He has won stages in the Tour de Langkawi and the Ringerike GP plus a second place in the GP Liberazione on April 25.

    Elite men long list

    Graeme Brown OAM, Simon Clarke, Baden Cooke, Allan Davis, Cadel Evans, Simon Gerrans, Matthew Goss, Adam Hansen, Mathew Hayman, Brett Lancaster OAM, Matthew Lloyd, Robbie Mcewen, Cameron Meyer, Travis Meyer, Stuart O'Grady OAM, Richie Porte, Mark Renshaw, Luke Roberts OAM, Michael Rogers, Wesley Sulzberger, Chris Sutton,...

  • Crashes and injuries in Dauphiné

    Paul Martens (Rabobank) before the race start.
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 10:34 BST
    Susan Westemeyer

    Rabobank's Martens with torn kidney

    Several crashes and accidents claimed a number of victims in the first stage of the Criterium du Dauphiné on Monday. One of the most seriously injured was Rabobank's Paul Martens.

    Martens was taken to hospital after crashing in the finale of the stage. On Tuesday morning, the team announced that he had not only broken ribs but had also torn his kidney. The German will stay in hospital several days for observation, and will be out of racing for several weeks.

    Martens was not involved in the mass crash some 15 km before the finish, but went down with only 2.5km to go. He and a Cofidis rider misjudged a sharp curve. “He fell first and I was so shocked I braked wrong,” Martens wrote on “I went with full speed with my chest against the guard rail.”

    Four of his Rabobank teammates were involved in an earlier crash, but only Dennis van Winden was injured,complaining about pain in his hand.  He was originally expected to start today, but it was decided that he should instead fly back to the Netherlands for further examinations, the team said.

    Omega Pharma-Lotto's Jean-Christophe Peraud was involved in an unusual accident. He drove into the back of a car, and went right over his handlebars. “Fortunately there were no fractures found afterwards, but our French time trial champion is scraped from head to toe,” the team reported.

    Mauro Finetto of Liquigas was involved in the mass crash, and suffered a broken collarbone. RadioShack's Haimar Zubeldia also broke his wrist in the same crash.

  • Tour of Austria presented

    Filippo Pozzato (Katusha) speaks to Tour of Austria organiser Ursula Riha
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 10:51 BST
    Hedwig Kröner

    Week-long race to welcome Pozzato, include U25 classification

    The Austrian national tour Österreich-Rundfahrt, taking place from July 4-11, was presented on Monday. The 62nd edition of the race will see top stars of the sport such as Filippo Pozzato (Katusha) take part, and see a new classification for the best rider under 25 years of age.

    The 1,147km-long event (UCI Cat. 2.HC) will take the international peloton from Dornbirn to Vienna and include two summit finishes as well as an individual time trial on the penultimate day. The first summit finish comes on stage two, as riders will have to climb the Kitzbüheler Horn at 1,670 metres above sea level. After a transitional stage linking two Ski World Cup locations, stage four will be the queen stage of the event with the Grossglockner mountain looming at 2,323 metres.

    After another two transistional stages, the general classification will then be decided in Podersdorf with a 26.4km-long, perfectly flat time trial, before the tour ends in Vienna on July 11.

    A total of 144 riders from eight ProTour, seven Professional Continental and three Austrian Continental teams will line up at the event, and race organiser Ursula Riha was happy to announce that a new U25 classification has been created to honour the best young riders. "We want to give our young and aggressive Austrian riders the opportunity to make a great showing in an international field," said Riha.

    The complete list of participating teams is expected to be announced soon, with Katusha's Pozzato already one of the official stars of the stage race taking place at the same time as the Tour de France.

    The stages of the 62nd Österreich-Rundfahrt are as follows:

    Stage 1 - July 4: Dornbirn - Bludenz, 150.7 km
    Stage 2 - July 5: Landeck - Kitzbüheler Horn, 174.3 km
    Stage 3 - July 6: Kitzbühel - Lienz, 145 km
    Stage 4 - July 7: Lienz - Kaiser-Franz-Josefs-Höhe, 146.2 km
    Stage 5 - July 8: Bleiburg - Deutschlandsberg, 150.3 km

  • Sergeant rejects idea of Belgian team merger

    Marc Sergeant.
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 15:04 BST
    Cycling News

    Financial problems would be only strong reason to merge

    The “Belgian Super Team” proposed by Quick Step manager Patrick Lefevere has fallen on deaf ears at rival team Omega Pharma-Lotto, although team manager Marc Sergeant says he sees the point of the suggestion.

    "I understand the concept very well," Sergeant said in the Gazet van Antwerpen. "But then, the battle between the teams in Belgium is fun.

    "The fans on the side of the road come out because of the rivalry between Quick Step and Omega Pharma-Lotto. Take away that fight and we eventually lose cycling fans."

    Last month, Lefevere said that merging the two Belgian ProTour teams could be the future of Belgian cycling. "Imagine: Tom Boonen and Philippe Gilbert in one team. I dream of that now. These two could win all the Spring Classics," Lefevere said.

    But exactly that would be the difficulty, Sergeant said. "Having only one team would create a problem. For who would then leader in the Tour of Flanders: Gilbert or Boonen?"

    He admitted that there was one strong argument for the idea. “In Belgium it is indeed not easy for two teams to find the funds. If (sponsor) Quick-Step would stop after 2011, the team would stop if a new sponsor can't be found. In the past we even came close to a merger, especially if Quick Step had not surfaced. "

  • UCI demands Landis cease accusations

    Floyd Landis was helping out at the OUCH-Bahati Foundation VIP tent in California.
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 15:10 BST
    Cycling News

    Landis lawyers up with LeMond's legal team

    The former president of the International Cycling Union (UCI) has reportedly asked Floyd Landis to cease his accusations in a "strongly worded" letter from the UCI's general counsel.

    The current president of the UCI, Pat McQuaid, confirmed to the NY Daily News that the letter was sent requesting that Landis retract his accusations that his predecessor, Hein Verbruggen, accepted bribes to cover up a positive drug test by Lance Armstrong.

    "They are asking him to cease and desist from making statements he's made about Mr. Verbruggen in the past few weeks because they are not true," McQuaid said.

    In the same article, the NY Daily News reported that Landis has hired the powerful legal team of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati, the same firm which three-time Tour de France champion Greg LeMond employed in his lawsuit against the Trek Bicycle company.

    Landis last month sent a number of e-mail messages to cycling officials accusing Armstrong and several other former teammates of doping. His new legal team will defend him against any criminal or defamation suits which may arise from the accusations.

  • Haedo earns biggest win of career at Dauphiné

    Juan José Haedo (Saxo Bank) won in Bourg-Saint-Andéol with an impressive final burst of speed.
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 17:45 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Argentine not part of Saxo Bank's Tour de France line-up

    Juan José Haedo stormed to victory today at the Dauphiné where he earned what he considers the most prestigious win of his career so far. He found a space on the left side of the road as the wind was blowing from the right and passed the Sky train in an impressive manner with a lot of power in the final 50 metres.

    "I won't categorise myself as a specialist for this kind of bunch sprint," the Argentine said in a post-race press conference. "When there's no lead-out at the very end, you have to keep all perspectives open. I had to flow through these guys.

    "I also needed to be lucky and find the right spot. There was a gap but it could have been closed as well. Luck was on my side. I've done keirin on the track before, that's where I learnt to find my way to the finish, knowing who is going good or not, knowing who is on the right and who is on the left side."

    Haedo's first words were for his Saxo Bank team that had been the most active in the chase behind the breakaway of Guillaume Bonnafond (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Stéphane Augé (Cofidis), Bram Tankink (Rabobank), Inaki Isasi (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Anthony Delaplace (Saur-Sojasun). "The team has done a huge job today," the 29-year-old Argentine said. "We did it yesterday as well. Therefore it was better to finish the job with the win. It's a reward to the team that worked the best.

    "This is one of my biggest wins," said Haedo, who collected his 27th pro win today and the second ProTour victory of his career after a stage at the Volta Catalunya in March earlier this year. "This is a race you normally watch on TV to see who is looking good for the Tour de France. It has a lot of prestige. It's a big race. It's one of the highlights of the calendar."

    Haedo isn't at the Dauphiné to gear up for the Tour de France. "There are guys at Saxo Bank who can win the overall classification of the Tour," he said. "The team is based for GC and I'm not on the...

  • Sastre diagnosed with herniated disc

    Carlos Sastre (Cervelo TestTeam) ascends the Mortirolo.
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 19:33 BST
    Cycling News

    Tour de France start contingent on full recovery

    Carlos Sastre of Cervelo TestTeam received results today of an MRI which revealed the extent of his back injury caused by crashes at this year's Giro d'Italia.

    After undergoing tests at the Santa Teresa Clinic in Ávila, the 35-year-old Spaniard was diagnosed with a posterior spinal disc herniation and a central extruded disc of the L5S1 disc. Although Sastre completed the Giro d'Italia in eighth place overall, his injuries may prevent him from starting the upcoming Tour de France.

    "I don't plan to go if I'm going to feel burdened from day one. If I do end up competing in the race, it will be because I'm fully recovered," said Sastre.

    "What I do know right now is that, in theory, I have time to recover [and be] ready to ride in the Tour, but I don't want obsess about participating in it. I agree with what the team manager said: the most important thing is my health and to be able to do my job in normal conditions."

    Sastre will undergo physiotherapy to provide relief from the injury and is cautiously optimistic about resuming training for the Tour. "We will see how the work goes with the physio," said Sastre. "He thinks that with his assistance, he can control the area so that the disc doesn't rub against the nerve nucleus. He said that with a series of exercises, the right diet and a good recovery period, we can make it.

    "I can sacrifice a few more training days, but not too many. I don't want to make any predictions before I know for sure. I want to ride in the Tour, but the pains have to disappear for that to be possible. The area that I hit has improved because I'm not making the same effort that I was doing during the Giro, but I want to take it quietly and I don't want to impose targets on myself."

    Heavy hits mar Sastre's Giro

    Sastre revealed the extent of the injuries he sustained throughout the Giro's first week, the opening stanza of the race that claimed plenty of victims,...

  • Millar aims to overcome Dauphiné prologue disappointment

    David Millar (Garmin-Transitions) was only 13th
    Article published:
    June 08, 2010, 22:19 BST
    Jean-François Quénet

    Scot rates Grabsch as hot favourite for time trial

    David Millar came into the Critérium du Dauphiné looking for the overall victory, but is now looking to reverse a disappointing performance in the prologue where he finished 13th. The Garmin-Transitions rider hopes to perform better in the longer 49-kilometre time trial scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

    He revealed he had a technical problem in Evian-les-Bains on the race's opening stage. "On purpose I started the climb on the small ring," he said at the start of stage 2 in Annonay. "But after two kilometres, when I wanted to switch for the big ring, my chain stayed on the small one. In these conditions, I couldn't expect a better result than the one I got."

    Millar announced as early as during the Giro d'Italia that he would ride the Dauphiné for the win. He pulled out of the corsa rosa two days earlier than planned because of a bad cough. "I've recovered," he said. "Here I want to better than last year when I finished 9th. I want to make the final top 5 on Sunday. The tactic is simple: I have to a great time trial on Wednesday. The distance of 49 kilometres should create big differences. To do well on GC, I have to get two minutes lead over the climbers."

    He's the hot favourite of stage 3 from Monteux to Sorgues, indeed. About the other favourites, he said: "Bert Grabsch won this race last year and he came back to do it again. I've seen a few guys here who are going very well. Jurgen Van den Broeck is one of them, also Janez Brajkovic and of course Alberto Contador who is not only the world's best climber but also one of the two world's best time triallists with Fabian Cancellara. I heard he wants to test himself in that stage!"

    "Except from Contador who is above everyone here, the level is well balanced at the Dauphiné," Millar continued. "I can do something. I need a result. I need a win as well." Millar stated that he'll ride the Tour de France in support to Christian Vande Velde who is...