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Second Edition Cycling News, Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Date published:
December 23, 2009, 0:00 GMT
  • Moreni's return to cycling a tough road

    Cristian Moreni (Cofidis) was suffering on the climb, but it was likely the last time in this Tour.
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 5:46 GMT
    Cycling News

    Former Cofidis rider paying for his mistakes in '07

    Italian rider Christian Moreni has spoken of his desire to return to cycling, despite having to literally 'pay for his mistakes' and an air of "indifference" that he feels encapsulates his possible comeback.

    Moreni was escorted out of the Tour de France in 2007 after testing positive for testosterone, which he maintains was the result of using an ointment. He was informed of the development by a photographer at the Col d'Aubisque stage finish on July 25.

    He was suspended for two years and forced to pay a year's salary for his misdemeanour, a result of signing the 'Rider's Commitment to a New Cycling'. The document was offered to all riders who wished to ride the 2007 Tour de France - should they not comply they ran the risk of being forced to sit out the season's biggest race.

    "Out of my own pocket I decided to meet the commitment made by signing the document 'for a new cycling' that all we had to sign before the 2007 Tour," Moreni told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. "I was Italian champion, I wore the [Giro d'Italia] pink jersey and the [national team] blue in two World Championships and the Olympics in Athens. I want to return to show that I can finish [my career] in a different way."

    Despite signing the document pledging a new beginning for the sport, Moreni was one of several doping cases uncovered during the 2007 Tour. He recalled his decision to sign the document and admitted that consequently he should honour the penalty. "Before starting [the Tour] we all signed with the UCI; if we went positive we had to pay a year's salary to the Foundation for Doping Research.

    "Many disagreed, but in my team whoever didn't sign the document could no longer ride. In July of this year my ban ended and I expressed my willingness to respect the UCI's commitment. [The UCI] gave me an appointment for October and we have an agreement. In a few days I will finalise the payment." Moreni preferred not to disclose how much...

  • UnitedHealthcare presents its 2010 roster

    Karl Menzies (Team Ouch Presented By Maxxis) was happy with his second place.
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 7:23 GMT
    Cycling News

    Youth and experience the formula next season

    Having recently announced a new sponsorship deal for 2010, US Continental team UnitedHealthcare presented by Maxxis has announced its roster for next season.

    Team stalwarts Rory Sutherland, Karl Menzies, Roman Kilun and Tim Johnson will carry the 'experience' tag with another seasoned campaigner, Chris Baldwin. Joining them will be the likes of Jake Keough and Eric Barlevav, who rode for Kelly Benefits and Mountain Khakis respectively this year, in addition to Australian rider Jonny Clarke and Morgan Schmitt.

    The squad is further bolstered with the addition of Adrian Hegyvary and former Rabobank rider Marc de Maar. The Dutchman spent three seasons with the ProTour team and with the return of young American Max Jenkins - who has been racing with Danish team Glud & Marstrand this year - there's a touch of Euro to the American outfit.

    "As a team, we have a huge amount of optimism for the 2010 season," said Tim Johnson. "We're really set up well with the guys we have, with the motivation and support, to have one of the best seasons ever, not just in results but in the way we race. You need a group of guys you can trust to get the job done, and we have that," he added.

    Directeur sportif Mike Tamayo returns next season and in as enthusiastic as ever. "One of the things this organisation has always done well, from day one, is to blend veteran professionals with younger riders into consistently strong teams," said Tamayo.

    "The new group we have coming in has a lot of talent. When you put them together with guys like Rory [Sutherland], Tim [Johnson] and Chris [Baldwin], they not only have a chance to learn how to race from some of the best, most professional riders in the country, but also how to win."

    The team welcomes back former rider Gord Fraser, who will be a directeur sportif in 2010. He's relatively new to the job but familiar with how this squad works. "I had a really good experience in 2009 in my first year of...

  • Zabriskie-signed jersey winner announced

    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 9:02 GMT
    Cycling News

    Reader poll closes soon is pleased to announce that Mark Findeis, from Belmont, Massachusetts, USA, is the lucky winner of a US national time trial jersey, autographed by five-time national champion, David Zabriskie.

    Mark was chosen from over 4,000 entries and thanks to the lovely folk at Pearl Izumi – who provided the jersey – will be receiving his prize very soon.

    Congratulations Mark, and thanks to everyone who entered the competition.

    Don’t forget, you can still win an Argon18 Krypton bike in our 2009 Reader Poll. All you have to do is vote from a fixed selection in each category, so the poll should take you less than a few minutes to complete. Good luck!

  • Renshaw out with Epstein-Barr

    Mark Cavendish and Mark Renshaw celebrate on the Champs-Élysées
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 10:51 GMT
    Susan Westemeyer

    Cavendish helper forced out of action

    Mark Renshaw of Team Columbia-HTC is suffering from the Epstein-Barr virus and is out of action until at least January. The Australian is the final lead-out man for sprinter Mark Cavendish.

    Renshaw was diagnosed two weeks ago and advised to take a complete break for several months. He had been scheduled to ride the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic in Geelong, the Australian Open Road Championships and the Tour Down Under.

    Epstein-Barr virus is related to mononucleosis. It is the same virus which knocked his Columbia teammate Michael Rogers out for most of the 2008 season.

    According to the Geelong Advertiser, Renshaw went to the doctor after being extremely fatigued after resuming training.

    “He doesn't feel sick which is the terrible thing,” Jayco Bay Cycling Classic organiser John Trevorrow said. “As he started to get back to training he started feeling tired all the time and couldn't work out how he was so tired when he wasn't training hard.”

    Renshaw, 27, turned pro with in 2004. He rode for Credit Agricole from 2006 to 2008, before joining Columbia in 2009. While he didn't have any wins this year, he was instrumental in setting up many of Cavendish's victories, including the win in the finale of the Tour de France, where Renshaw finished second.

  • Diplomas from the UCI for Directeurs

    The International Cycling Union (UCI)
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 11:08 GMT
    Susan Westemeyer

    First graduates of the UCI's management-training programme

    Twenty-six ProTour and Professional Continental Directeurs Sportif can now claim a diploma for having completed the course “From Passion to Performance”. The management training course, held the beginning of November, was sponsored by the International Cycling Union (UCI).

    A total of 26 Directeurs Sportif took part in the programme, and were then asked to draw up activity plans for their teams, based on what they had learned. It was on the basis of an assessment of these plans that certificates were issued attesting to the fact that the standards required by the UCI had been achieved, the UCI said in a statement released Tuesday.

    Allan Peiper of Columbia-HTC said, "This course, and in particular the fact that there is an examination that you have to pass at the end, will give our profession greater credibility. It means that the competence and knowledge of Directeurs are recognised by a body outside the teams themselves.”

    "This obligation, introduced by the UCI, will guarantee that in future the quality of the supervision of riders from all teams will fully satisfy the required standards and checks.” said John Lelangue of BMC Racing Team.

    Milram''s Raoul Liebregts, said that "This training has given us essential basic information that no Directeur Sportif of a professional team can do without."

    The UCI will require anyone wishing to become a Directeur Sportif to successfully complete this training by 2013 for ProTour teams and 2015 for Professional Continental teams.

    List of Course Graduates

    Gilles Mas (FRA) – AG2R La Mondiale
    John Lelangue (BEL) – BMC Racing Team
    Josu Larrazabal Arbaiza (ESP) – Euskaltel-Euskadi
    Gorka Gerrikagoitia (ESP) – Euskaltel-Euskadi
    Claudio Cozzi (ITA) – Team Katusha
    Bart Leysen (BEL) – Team Katusha
    Gennady Mikhalylov (RUS) – Team Katusha
    Fabrizio Bontempi...

  • Rebellin denies using CERA at Olympics

    Davide Rebellin
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 14:46 GMT
    Susan Westemeyer

    Italian determined to prove innocence

    Davide Rebellin is determined to prove his innocence and refute charges that he used CERA at the Beijing Olympics. “There is nothing to confess. I never used CERA,” he told the Gazzetta dello Sport.

    “There will always be someone who will think that I doped. I respect that everyone has to say what he thinks. But I'm going to hold my head high.”

    Rebellin and former Gerolsteiner teammate Stefan Schumacher both tested positive for the EPO variant CERA in samples taken at the Beijing Olympics last summer. The Italian has already returned the silver medal he won in the road race, and both riders have had their results disqualified. Both continue to protest their innocence.

    The 38-year-old Rebellin said that he and attorney have discovered “too many mysteries in the affair,” with “regulations not complied with, principles violated.”

    One of those mysteries is that there are seven samples attributed to him, although he only underwent three controls: one by the World Anti-Doping Agency on August 5; blood and urine controls by the UCI for all riders on August 7, the day before the race; and on August 8th, blood and urine controls after the race.

    Both Rebellin and Schumacher have appealed their disqualification to the Court of Arbitration for Sports, and the Italian listed some of the points of his case. There are many missing documents related to the samples, the analysis method for CERA had not been validated by the WADA at the time, and the French lab which conducted the analysis was not at the time accredited to do so.

    Rebellin has continued to train and is determined to come back to the sport. “The day after I heard the news I went out on my bike. And I have never stopped since then.”

    He concluded, “I always say to myself: Why did this thing happen to me? There are many questions. And I'll prove, if I can, that I am...

  • French agency targets Astana for illegal transfusion kit

    Team Astana led by Alberto Contador
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 15:15 GMT
    Cycling News

    Syringes seized during Tour de France show seven DNA fingerprints

    An investigation into medical equipment seized by French police during the Tour de France is closing in on the Astana team. A new report by Le Monde states that the Central Office against Environmental Damage and Public Health (OCLAESP) will focus any further proceedings on the Astana team after finding insufficient evidence against other teams.

    The public prosecutor in Paris opened the investigation in October after OCLAESP claimed it had uncovered "suspect" syringes of various sizes in the medical waste disposed by the Astana team. The latest finding states that infusion equipment, which was banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)  in July of 2008, except in cases of medical emergency, was among the material.

    The possession of materials such as intravenous drip bags could constitute a breach of French law banning the sale or possession of illegal drugs.

    When asked if the Astana team used any equipment banned by WADA at this year's Tour de France, Johan Bruyneel, Team Manager at the time, said, "No, of course not."

    The finding could mean the Tour de France champion Alberto Contador as well as his then-teammates, including Lance Armstrong and director Johan Bruyneel, could be questioned by the French authorities. -->

    Le Monde's sources claim that analysis of the medical waste show the presence of "polypeptides". The Paris laboratory Toxlab is testing for the presence of growth hormone. Also seized from the Astana team were anti-hypertensive drugs.

    The newspaper also claims that DNA testing on the seized Astana team's material revealed the presence of seven unique DNA fingerprints, but linking the evidence to individual riders would rely upon the UCI sharing its blood profile data with the French authorities.

    Such cooperation is complicated by a conflict between the UCI and the French anti-doping authority AFLD over testing at this year's Tour de France. The AFLD lodged...

  • Knee and rib problems for Weylandt

    Wouter Weylandt (Quick Step)
    Article published:
    December 23, 2009, 20:39 GMT
    Cycling News

    Quick Step rider must rest for another 10 to 14 days

    Wouter Weylandt has had nothing but trouble since this Team Quick Step training camp in Calpe, Spain, earlier this month. He is now suffering from a knee problem and a broken rib.

    He returned from the camp with knee pain and was ordered to rest the knee for 10 days, but that hasn't helped. “The doctor again prescribed 10 to 14 days of rest for me, because the knee is overloaded,” he told the Gazet van Antwerpen.

    And if that is not enough, he found another injury. “A bone scan taken of my entire body shows that I've broken a rib.” the 25-year-old said. “That's a souvenir from a fall during a 'cross race at the beginning of December.”