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Second Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Date published:
October 15, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Vos to have cyst removed from lower back

    A victory wave from Marianne Vos (Netherlands)
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 6:10 BST
    Cycling News

    Surgery set for end of October

    Marianne Vos is scheduled for an operation to remove a cyst from her lower back at the end of the month. Vos recently spoke with Dutch paper De Telegraaf saying she believed she'd found an answer to why she'd been experiencing pain for most of the season

    "Maybe this is the culprit," Vos told De Telegraaf. "It may well be that the cyst is pressing on a nerve and gives me pain at the base of my lower back. I know it is not fine, especially during a ‘cross. That is an outright attack on your body."

    The news was met with concern by Vos' fans, such that Vos felt it necessary to clarify the severity of the situation via twitter.

    "The story is made bigger than it is," said Vos. "My back is getting better & the minor surgery was planned in my off-season. No worries!"

    Vos won the Grote Prijs van Brabant on Saturday in the Netherlands and is expected to finish her season with two more dutch cross races. Firstly the opening Cyclo-cross World Cup of the season in Valkenburg on October 20 and then the ‘Night of Woerden' on October 22.

    Vos recently won her third world title on the road in Florence and earlier in the year she won her sixth elite Cyclo-cross world title. Having recently re-signed for Rabobank-Liv/Giant for another two seasons and with this procedure only set to improve her performance, it appears there will be no let-up for Vos' competitors in the near future.

  • Cavendish to ride Ghent Six with Keisse?

    Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma Quick Step) wins stage 7 of the Tour of Britain
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 10:56 BST
    Cycling News

    Omega Pharma-QuickStep teammate would welcome participation

    Mark Cavendish could ride the Ghent Six next month as the partner of Omega Pharma-QuickStep teammate Iljo Keisse, according to a report in Het Nieuwsblad.

    Cavendish previously participated in the Ghent Six in 2007, when he partnered Bradley Wiggins, but he has raced on the famous velodrome as recently as last month, when he lined up in the scratch race and the Madison at the International Belgian Open.

    It was Cavendish’s first outing with the British track team since the 2009 world championships and it marked the beginning of his bid to race on the track at the 2016 Olympic Games, as he scored the qualifying points necessary to compete in a round of the World Cup this winter.

    Keisse claimed his fifth victory at the Ghent Six last year in the company of Glenn O’Shea. While he was enthusiastic about the prospect of lining up alongside Cavendish from November 19-24, he stressed that no decision has yet been made on the Manxman’s participation.

    Last year, Bradley Wiggins voiced his desire to race in the Ghent Six but organiser Patrick Sercu admitted that he did not have the budget necessary to secure the Briton’s participation.

    “I don’t know if it will happen. It would be nice but it’s not a must for me,” Keisse told Het Nieuwsblad. “I don’t want Mark’s season to be overloaded. If he wants to participate, it makes sense that I ride with him. But if Mark does not...

  • Nibali confirms he will target the Tour de France in 2014

    Vincenzo Nibali cuts the cake at the Gran Gala Ciclistico Internazionale
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 11:59 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    Celebrated as best Italian rider of the season

    Vincenzo Nibali ended the 2013 season in fifth place in the final UCI WorldTour individual rankings but is arguably the world's most consistent rider of the season after winning the Giro d'Italia and finishing second in the Vuelta a Espana.

    No other rider finished on the podium in two Grand Tours in 2013. Nibali also won Tirreno-Adriatico in March, the Giro del Trentino in April and was fourth in the world road race championships in Tuscany. He raced for 85 days, finishing in the top ten over times.

    Nibali was feted as the best Italian rider at the Gran Gala Ciclistico Internazionale awards night in Conegliano on Monday night, where he reiterated that the Tour de France will be his big goal of 2014.

    The 28 year-old Sicilian currently stands head and shoulders above the rest of the Italian peloton. He is at the peak of his career, while the likes of Ivan Basso and Michele Scarponi are past their best and the next generation has yet to emerge and win major races.

    "It's great to be number one (in the Gran Gala classification). It's just a pity not to be number one in the UCI rankings even though everyone knows what I've won this year," Nibali told Gazetta dello Sport at the Gran Gala event.

    "Perhaps the way the points are awarded is wrong and needs rethinking. To be honest it's not something I think about too much when I race. I prefer to race."

    The Tour de France in 2014

    Nibali has yet to confirm that he won’t defend his Giro d'Italia victory in 2014 but the Tour de France is his major goal for next season, with little possibility of him going for the double. Nibali is expected to start his 2014 season at the Tour de San Luis in Argentina but will finalise...

  • Dombrowski reflects on debut season with Sky

    Joe Dombrowski (Team Sky)
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 13:09 BST
    Sadhbh O'Shea

    American rider pleased with progress

    Joe Dombrowski will bring his first year as a professional to a close at this weekend’s Japan Cup. The American has been racing at the Tour of Beijing for the past five days, finishing in 19th place overall, 59 seconds down on the winner Beñat Intxausti, after a strong showing on the penultimate stage.

    Dombrowski joined team Team Sky for the 2013 season, along with teammate and fellow countryman Ian Boswell, after two years on the Bontrager-Livestrong team.

    Cyclingnews spoke to Dombrowski ahead of the final stage of the Tour of Beijing to discuss his debut season in the British squad. “I’ve enjoyed it,” said Dombrowski. “Sky is definitely a good first team to come to. In a race, I’ve learned about riding as a team and being efficient in the peloton.”

    “It’s definitely a big change,” he continued. “It’s a big jump in the level of racing and the number of race days and the training as well. It’s also the change of moving to Europe and living there full time. It’s definitely a year where I’ve had a lot of big changes but I think I’ll come into next year with a bit more perspective and I’ll know what I’m in for.”

    Dombrowski is one of Sky’s major prospects for the future as a general classification rider, as he demonstrated by winning the Girobio last season ahead of Astana’s Fabio Aru. The American also took an impressive 10th place in the general classification at the 2012 USA Pro Cycling Challenge.

    “There are a lot of good GC riders to learn from here,” said Dombrowski. “There’s an environment that allows you to develop over time and there isn’t a whole load of...

  • Movistar claim WorldTour team title

    Despite having nearly his entire Movistar team to assist him, Alejandro Valverde never caught back to the yellow jersey group after a wheel change and saw his overall podium hopes disappear.
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 13:19 BST
    Cycling News

    Dan Martin moves up as Rodriguez seals individual UCI rankings

    Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) had already sealed his third WorldTour title in four years by winning the Tour of Lombardy last week but there was some final movement in the upper reaches of the classification following the Tour of Beijing-long competition -the last race in the season, with Movistar managing to move past Team Sky to win the team classification.

    Dan Martin (Garmin-Sharp) finished the Tour of Beijing in second place overall, and the resultant haul of points was enough to see him overtake Nairo Quintana and Fabian Cancellara to finish the campaign in sixth place overall in the individual rankings, his best WorldTour position yet.

    Newly-crowned world champion Rui Costa (Movistar) ends his season in ninth place thanks to his fourth place finish at the Tour of Bejing, while teammate Benat Intxausti leapt up 34 places  following his final overall victory in China. There was no change at the very top of the standings, with neither Rodriguez, second-placed Chris Froome (Team Sky) nor third-placed Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) lining up in Beijing. Rodriguez topped the individual ranking with a total of 607 points. Froome scored 587 and Valverde 540.

    Rui Costa and Intxausti’s gains in Beijing also helped Movistar move ahead of Team Sky and claim the team classification for the first time since 2008, when it operated under the Caisse d’Épargne banner. Katusha finished the year in third place in the standings. Movistar scored 1610 points, beating Team Sky by 49 points. 

    For the seventh time in the nine seasons of the WorldTour/ProTour system, Spain finished atop the national standings, over 800 points clear of Italy and emerging nation Colombia.

    2013 WorldTour - final...

  • Bennett and Machado sign for NetApp-Endura

    Tiago Machado (RadioShack Leopard) on stage for winning the KOM classification at the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 15:55 BST
    José Been

    Irish sprinter arrives after Tour of Britain success

    Team Netapp-Endura has announced the signing of Sam Bennett and Tiago Machado for the 2014 season. “We’re betting on continuity. We had a very successful season in 2013 and we demonstrated our team's current level of performance most recently at the Vuelta a España,” team manager Ralph Denk said.

    The German Pro Continental team won ten races this season with Leopold König’s stage victory in the Vuelta the highlight. König also won the stage to Mount Diablo in the Amgen Tour of California, while Alexander Wetterhall and Blaz Jarc delivered success in the one-day races GP Stad Zottegem and Ronde van Drenthe.

    Sam Bennett is a new addition to the team after three years with An Post-Chainreaction. Netapp-Endura recruited him especially for his qualities in the sprint. The young Irishman demonstrated that this season in the Tour of Britain where he won the stage to Caerphilly, having previously lost out narrowly to Milan-San Remo winner Gerald Ciolek at Kendal.

    “Sam is among the best up-and-coming sprinters in Europe. He will be a valuable addition to our squad of young sprinters,” team manager Ralph Denk explained.

    Tiago Machado is an experienced Grand Tour rider with two appearances at the Giro d’Italia and two at the Vuelta a España under his belt. The 27-year-old Portuguese rider turned professional with Radioshack in 2010 but found no place in the Trek Factory Team for 2014.

    “We signed Tiago specifically for the general classification at shorter stage races. And with his climbing skills, he will provide added support for Leo König at the bigger tours,” said Denk.

    The spine of the team for 2014 is now in place, but Netapp-Endura is keeping its...

  • Gesink happy with second half of season

    2013 Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec champion Robert Gesink (Belkin) on the podium
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 17:55 BST
    Sadhbh O'Shea

    Belkin rider won’t ride Giro in 2014

    Robert Gesink (Belkin) has waved goodbye to a season of mixed fortunes at the Tour of Beijing. The Belkin rider finished eighth in the final WorldTour event of the season and will now head home to begin his off-season.

    Gesink has enjoyed a late resurgence this Autumn. He was the surprise winner of the GP Cycliste Québec, as he out-sprinted both Arthur Vichot and Greg Van Avermaet. Gesink then went onto take a top 10 placing at Il Lombardia, 15 seconds behind race winner Joaquim Rodríguez. “In the end, if you can finish 10th in one of the biggest classics and you can do it every year, then every year you’ve had a good season,” the Dutchman told Cyclingnews.

    Gesink also formed part of the Dutch squad at this year’s world championships, where although he failed to finish, he worked on behalf of Belkin teammate Bauke Mollema. “Bauke did really well,” says Gesink. “He was there in the end. It was a difficult race. It was really sketchy and everybody was crashing everywhere. It was a really special race and, in the end, we said we wanted top 10 and Bauke got 11th, so it was close.”

    It has been a year of two halves for the Dutch rider. Most of his problems came earlier in the season at the Grand Tours, where he suffered from bad health, bad form and bad luck. He came close to winning stage 16 of the Giro d’Italia, when his chain slipped in the final three kilometres. The Dutchman abandoned the race a few days later, citing illness.

    “It wasn’t what I expected,” said Gesink. “I went full gas for the GC and I got ill. Then, at the Tour, I wasn’t as fresh as I thought, so I worked for the team. That was a bit of a disappointment...

  • First season review for Novo Nordisk owner Phil Southerland

    Martijn Verschoor (Novo Nordisk).
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 19:00 BST
    Pat Malach

    All diabetic team aiming for TDF by 2021

    With the first year completed in its experiment with an all-diabetic roster, Novo Nordisk owner Phil Southerland said the UCI Pro Continental team is satisfied with its current progress and place in the pro peloton.

    "The team exceeded our expectations by far," said Southerland, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was just seven months old. "I look to June when we decided to go in this direction last year wondering if we would be able to field a team, to training camp where the guys were wondering if they deserved to be in the professional peloton, to the first race, where again they were there and we got the nerves out of the way."

    The team started in the Continental ranks in 2008 as Team Type 1, a squad that championed diabetes causes and had several diabetic riders on the roster, including Southerland, but also had non-diabetic riders such as Jesse Anthony, Chris Jones, Mike Creed, Ken Hanson and Shawn Milne. Team Type 1 moved to the Pro Continental ranks in 2011 when it picked up Sanofi, a pharmaceutical company, as a secondary sponsor.

    The team competed as Team Type 1-Sanofi through the 2011 and 2012 seasons, wracking up 19 UCI wins in 2012 before gaining Novo Nordisk as a sponsor for the 2013 season and accepting a challenge from Jakob Riis, the company's executive vice president of marketing, to field an all-type 1 team.

    The Danish pharmaceutical giant employs more than 35,000 people worldwide and is estimated to have brought in nearly $4 billion in profits during 2012 alone. The nearly century-old company is one of the world's largest manufacturers of diabetes care equipment and medications, and it founded the World Diabetes Foundation in 2002.

    Southerland convinced Novo Nordisk that an international team of world-class bike racers with...