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Second Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Date published:
November 06, 2012, 0:00 GMT
  • Hamilton on Tinkov: His return is a setback for cycling

    Oleg Tinkov and Tyler Hamilton
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 8:12 GMT
    Cycling News

    Former rider wanted to warn Riis to stay clear of Russian

    Tyler Hamilton has continued to expose his and cycling's dark past by alleging former Olev Tinkov, former owner of Tinkoff Credit Systems and now sponsor of Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank, suggested his riders do what was required to achieve results, "just don't get caught."

    Hamilton's claims follow in quick succession after revealing his former CSC team director Bjarne Riis was aware of his relationship with doctor Eufemiano Fuentes.

    Hamilton has reportedly told that Tinkov expressed his attitude toward untold practices at the team's first meeting. The American joined Tinkoff Credit Systems in 2007 after serving a two-year ban for failing a blood test at the 2004 Vuelta a España.

    "Already at the first team meeting, where we sat in a conference room, Oleg Tinkov said: 'I do not care what you do, just do not get caught'. You can write this because there were many people in the room who can confirm it, if Tinkov decided to sue me for saying this," said Hamilton.

    "There were 20-year-old riders around the table. Was it really something they should hear? He did not say anything specific about it, but he said 'do not be caught'. We do not need such a person in cycling."

    Tinkoff Credit Systems disbanded at the end of 2008 with the team structure transferred to Team Katusha however, Hamilton was not on the team to witness the change. He was suspended by the team shortly before the 2007 Giro d'Italia after being named in Operación Puerto. He left the team at the...

  • Former Armstrong teammate, George fails EPO test

    Former multiple national champion on the road, David George is gunning for his first ever national mountain bike title on Saturday.
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 10:48 GMT
    Cycling News

    Updated: Rider admits to doping

    Former US Postal rider and teammate of Lance Armstrong, David George, has been provisionally suspended after returning an adverse analytical finding for EPO in an out-of-competition test conducted by the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport. 

    The test was taken on August 29 of this year and the rider has been immediately removed from competition by Cycling South Africa and the African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS).

    George did not contest the result.

    "On 29th August 2012, I returned an out of competition positive test for Erythropoietin (EPO). I will not be asking for a B sample to be tested as I know the result will ultimately be the same. This decision will be communicated to Cycling South Africa (CSA) and Drug Free Sport shortly and according to protocol.

    "I fully understand the consequences of my admission and will bear the results of this. Cycling, as you know, has been a confusing space and although it has given me incredible moments it has also given me experiences that no person or young athlete should have to go through."

    George, 36, rode for US Postal in 1999 and 2000. He was released after two years and moved from team to team in Europe, including Tacconi Sport, Barloworld and Relax GAM, for whom he rode the Vuelta in 2006. George rode for a domestic mountain bike team in 2012.

  • Gilmore creates the DTPC Honda Pro Cycling women's team

    Giorgia Bronzini in her second consecutive rainbow jersey
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 11:22 GMT
    Cycling News

    Bronzini, Rowsell, Trott and King to ride for British registered squad

    British Olympic champions Joanna Rowsell, Laura Trott and Danielle King have joined forces with former double world champion Giorgia Bronzini and Australia's Rochelle Gilmore to create an new women's team backed by Honda.

    The team will be called DTPC Honda Pro Cycling and will be owned and managed by Gilmore. DTPC is an acronym for Dream Team Professional Cycling but Gilmore revealed she is currently in negotiations with global company based in the United Kingdom about becoming lead sponsor. With so many British riders in the new team, it seems likely that Sky could become the lead sponsor.

    Bradley Wiggins will also support the team via his Foundation. Technical sponsors include Pinarello, Campagnolo, Vanmobil, Lazer, High5, Tacx, Fizik and Look.

    Also announced as part of the 12-rider team are junior World individual time trial champion Elinor Barker, fellow Briton Amy Roberts, Australia's Lauren Kitchen, three-time Japanese road race champion Mayuko Hagiwara, Anna Bianca Schnitzmeier from Germany, Emily Collins from New Zealand and Beatrice Bartelloni from Italy. Gilmore will race and manage the team.

    "I believe that having partnerships with companies like Honda and the Wiggo Foundation, the team can function as a truly professional organisation, making the athletes a priority and providing them with what they need in order to reach their potential," Gilmore said in a press release announcing the creation of the team.

    Bronzini won back-to-back world road race titles in 2010 and 2011 thanks to her powerful sprint finish. She said: "I'm glad to be a part DTPC Honda Team because I believe in Rochelle Gilmore and her project. Although it is a new team, I am confident that we will take good satisfaction and I'm sure that between us girls there will be harmony."

    The team will debut in the 2013 Ladies Tour of Qatar that begins on January 30th.

  • Balocco sponsors the Giro d'Italia maglia rosa

    Gazzetta dello Sport editor Andrea Monti, Balocco CEO Alberto Balocco and Giacomo Catano of RCS Sport
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 11:54 GMT
    Cycling News

    Italian biscuit company switches from soccer to cycling

    The organisers of the Giro d'Italia have announced a new sponsor for the race leader's pink jersey, with biscuit producer Balocco taking over from long-term sponsor Estathe' for 2013 and 2014.

    Balocco has been the away strip sponsor of Juventus for the last two years but opted to invest in cycling after CEO Alberto Balocco spent a day on the race.

    The maglia rosa was introduced in 1931 with the legendary Learco Guerra the first rider to ever wear the iconic jersey after winning the opening stage of the Giro d'Italia.

    “The Giro is without a doubt one of the most iconic events in our country, and thanks to its international coverage, shows wonderful images of our Italy around the world. Our sponsorship of the maglia rosa is therefore a fantastic way of reaffirming our Italian pride and increasing our global profile.” Alberto Balocco told Gazzetta della Sport.

    The Balocco logo will appear on the chest, sides and back of the pink jersey produced by Santini. Balocco has decided to invest in professional cycling despite the recent doping scandals and fear in Italy about the outcome of the Padua police investigation.

    "There's always a risk in anything you do but were convinced that we've made the right choice. I've seen that the testing is severe and gives little chance to anyone who thinks of cheating," Alberto Balocco told Gazzetta della Sport.

    "We've signed a two-year contract, with an option for a third year. We're not interested in a short-term sponsorship, we want people to remember our name."

    The 2013 Giro d'Italia starts from Naples on May 4 and finishes in Brescia on May 26. Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) won the 2012 Giro d'Italia and is likely to face 2012 Tour de France winner

  • Cycling was a "deeply criminal business" says Millar

    David Millar (Garmin - Sharp)
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 14:26 GMT
    Cycling News

    Garmin-Sharp rider says it's up to the UCI, riders to make people believe

    David Millar believes that the UCI must admit responsibility for not doing enough in the fight against doping in light of USADA’s case against Lance Armstrong and the systematic doping at US Postal. Millar says UCI President Pat McQuaid must recognise changes need to be made to repair the current image of professional cycling.

    "Cycling has been exposed as a fraudulent sport," Millar told The Guardian. "It was, until recently, a deeply criminal business. We're facing the darkness of that period, and it is so necessary. This is the only way that cycling is going to climb out of the abyss - by confronting the past just as we have cleaned up the current state of the sport. It has to be done and that's why the UCI needs to take responsibility now."

    Millar has been a constant voice in light of the recent doping scandal involving Armstrong, having served a ban for doping in 2004 and suggests transparency and action are required immediately, not only from the UCI but also from the riders.

    "I don't think they [UCI] realise what everyone needs is immediate action," said Millar. "They have to act quickly or they're going to face a total revolt and they'll be out anyway."

    "But, with the UCI, there still seems to be a sense of denial and an 'us and them' approach. They still claim that they did everything they could to stop doping. Well, they didn't - that's obvious to everyone."

    The Garmin-Sharp rider suggests the real concern for the UCI is public education. The release of USADA’s comprehensive dossier, available online, has meant anyone with an interest in the...

  • Scarponi admits tests with Dr. Ferrari to doping investigators

    Michele Scarponi (Lampre-ISD) after his second place finish in stage 10.
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 15:40 GMT
    Stephen Farrand

    Lampre-ISD rider hoping for rapid verdict to save 2013 season

    Michele Scarponi has formally admitting doing tests with Dr Michele Ferrari after being questioned by the anti-doping investigators of the Italian Olympic Committee in Rome.

    In a possible move to ensure he serves any suspension during the winter, the Lampre-ISD rider offered to be questioned in Rome before the investigators receive all the evidence from the Padua police investigation that lifted the lid on Dr. Ferrari's activities.

    Scarponi has already served an 18-month ban for his involvement in Operacion Puerto. Filippo Pozzato was banned for six-month after admitting being coached by Dr. Ferrari and Scarponi could face a similar ban.

    Last year Scarponi denied working with Dr. Ferrari to Cyclingnews, saying: "Absolutely not. No way." But Padua police apparently captured a conversation between the two after the test thanks to a listening device hidden in Dr. Ferrari’s camper.

    According to a report in Gazzetta dello Sport, Scarponi talks to Dr. Ferrari about mistakes in his 2010 Giro d'Italia preparation and why he failed to win the Giro. Scarponi finished second behind Alberto Contador in the 2011 Giro d'Italia but was declared the winner after the Spaniard was banned for his positive test for clenbuterol at the 2010 Tour de France.

    "(Scarponi) tells Ferrari that he could have won the Giro and Ferrari replies that if he'd had a bag, he could have had a chance," Gazzetta reported the Padua police reports as saying.

    After being questioned for approximately three hours in Rome, Scarponi briefly spoke to Italian media and then issued a statement, claiming he did not know that Dr. Ferrari was banned from working as a sports doctor.

    "I admitted to doing a two-part test with Dr. Ferrari in September 2010 when my contract...

  • Scarponi suspended by Lampre-ISD after links to Dr. Ferrari

    Michele Scarponi (Lampre - ISD)
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 17:38 GMT
    Stephen Farrand

    Italian team awaits outcome of Italian investigation

    The Lampre-ISD team has temporarily suspended Michele Scarponi after he admitted undergoing tests with Dr. Michele Ferrari. The Italian team has stopped Scarponi's reported 700,000 Euro salary.

    Scarponi surprisingly volunteered to be questioned by the Italian Olympic Committee's anti-doping investigators in Rome on Tuesday and formally admitted to undergoing a two-part with Dr. Ferrari in 2010 before joining Lampre-ISD in 2011.

    He first admitted visiting Dr. Ferrari on October 25 after a report by Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport published evidence from the Padua police investigation I to Dr. Ferrari's activities. That confession sparked his suspension by the Italian team.

    "We've followed our internal medical policy and Michele has been suspended by the team doctor Carlo Guardascione. The suspension began on October 25, when Michele released his statement. We've notified the Italian Cycling Federation of the suspension," Lampre-ISD press officer Andrea Appiani told Cyclingnews.

    Scarponi is hoping for a quick verdict to limit the damage to his 2013 season. The Italian anti-doping investigators will now study his case and decide if he should face a disciplinary hearing.

    Scarponi was banned for 18 months for his involvement in Operacion Puerto. Although confusion remains if Dr. Ferrari was ever formally banned from working as a sports doctor in 2002, Scarponi risks a suspension of between three to six months. New Lampre teammate Filippo Pozzato was banned six months for working with Ferrari and missed most of the 2012 season. A sixth-month ban would end on April 25th, allowing Scarponi to return in time for the...

  • Posthuma retires after failing to secure 2013 team

    Joost Posthuma (RadioShack Nissan)
    Article published:
    November 06, 2012, 18:31 GMT
    Cycling News

    Dutch rider blames UCI points system

    RadioShack-Nissan rider Joost Posthuma has decided to retire after failing to secure a contract for the 2013 season, he stated on his personal website today.

    After spending his entire professional career with the Rabobank teams, the 31-year-old signed with Leopard Trek for 2011-2012, and remained with the team through its merger with RadioShack.

    Posthuma was part of the Leopard Trek Tour de France team which put both Andy and Fränk Schleck on the final podium behind Cadel Evans in 2011. However, his important role as a domestique was of little value in a system which puts UCI points as the most critical factor in any team's bid for the WorldTour.

    "I have been negotiating with different teams such Vacansoleil, but they had no room. Additionally, there are many teams that need ProTour points and, to be honest, I have none. Teams need points in order to remain in the top tier," Posthuma said.

    He said that the Leopard Trek team ended badly when the merger happened and it meant the exit of many of the team's younger riders. While he survived the cut, Posthuma said the move pushed him down from the 'A-team' to a C and then "an F-rider". "Of course I was sick at some key moments, but there were clearly other factors. Eventually it became demotivating to train so hard on the road, behind the scooter, for the big races and then the big races never come."

    Posthuma admitted that his lack of motivation and two young children at home led him to simply give up his search for a new team, and find a new career rather than take a step back to a smaller team.

    "I'm ready for a new challenge," he said. "I have a lot of positive energy for the future. Last week I signed up for the...