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World Championships Cycling News for September 24, 2005

Date published:
September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
  • Two more riders excluded

    Malaysian Darshan Singh Gill announced his retirement from international cycling management in the wake of the UCI elections today
    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Shane Stokes in Madrid

    By Shane Stokes in Madrid Following yesterday's news that two Bulgarians, Ivaïlo Gabrovski and...

    By Shane Stokes in Madrid

    Following yesterday's news that two Bulgarians, Ivaïlo Gabrovski and Bogdan Stoytchev, were excluded from the 2005 world road race championship events because they failed the UCI health check, it has been announced today that two riders from the Slovenian squad have also fallen foul of the blood tests.

    Simon Spilak and Vladimir Kerkez were amongst 35 riders who underwent examination earlier on Friday, and while the other entrants from France, Italy, Australia, Kazakhstan and Slovenia were pronounced fit for competition, the two have been told they cannot start tomorrow's under 23 road race.

    The medical controls test riders to ensure that their hematocrit is not above the 50% threshold. Failing the test is suggestive, rather than being seen as definitive proof, of EPO use or other blood manipulation.

  • Unzue's view of the World's

    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid Illes Balears team director Eusebio Unzue is following the World...

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    Illes Balears team director Eusebio Unzue is following the World Championships in Madrid. He was present at the UCI annual congress and he spoke with Cyclingnews about the World's. "The two Spanish guys did very well [in yesterday men's time trial]," said Unzue. "I think Ivan [Gutierrez] went for the gold medal and he was close to achieving it. Ruben [Plaza] showed he was in good condition after finishing the Vuelta a España; he was almost on the podium."

    About Australia's Michael Rogers, Unzue assured, "He is not World Champion by chance. I think he demonstrated that besides being a great specialist, he is the one of the specialists who knows how to reach the best condition on the exact day of the competition. I think that's one reason for his results."

    Unzue was in the warm up sector yesterday at the men's time trial when the Czech Jan Hruska rode the time trial. "I followed him to take references during the course to help Ivan Gutierrez. Then with Hruska's references and seeing the time he had lost, we had 18, 20 reference points," said the Illes Balears director.

    About the World's so far, he said, "The Spanish performance was very good. I can speak just about yesterday's time trial. For us [Illes Balears] the silver medal is a great result. For the people in the organization it is also a great result to already get two silver medals [Joane Somarriba took second in Wednesday women's time trial]."

    Sunday's road race is the star competition and the eyes of the world will be watching what happens in Madrid. "It's a parcours, let's say, pretty open. Apparently it's a circuit not too selective, so I think there will be people capable of attacking. The reduction of the number of riders per national team will be another reason for the race to be less controlled. Perhaps there is a surprising rider who is in nobody's mind who can win," finished Eusebio Unzue.

  • Darshan Singh retires

    Malaysian Darshan Singh Gill
    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid Malaysia's Darshan Singh decided to withdraw from the UCI's...

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    Malaysia's Darshan Singh decided to withdraw from the UCI's presidential elections made today in Madrid. Cyclingnews spoke with him just after Pat McQuaid was elected new president. "The election has taken place and there is the result," said Singh. "We must respect the result given by the delegates.

    "I withdrew because I felt I don't have the opportunity to lead all the delegates. Early on, I didn't have the names, I didn't have the addresses, so I withdrew. But never mind, I withdrew and I hoped that the election was run cleanly and the election is completed. The result is there, I can not say anything else," concluded the Malaysian. who is abandoning international cycling management today.

    Meanwhile, the president of the Argentinean Cycling Federation Gabriel Curuchet was one of the voters. He commented to us, "This is a time that the world of cycling is undergoing many changes with the ProTour and with many projects for the long term. Now the UCI is in the hands of a person who has been following the UCI policy for many years. He will certainly keep on with the kind of projects that give more importance to federations like ours, that has the chance to be a part of a World Championship. This policy also tries to develop cycling outside Europe. The UCI is doing that little by little, and I think that with him [Pat McQuaid] this will continue."

    Cyclingnews coverage of the UCI elections

    September 24 - Spain's perspective on UCI election result
    September 24 - Darshan Singh retires
    September 23 - A wonderful moment for McQuaid
    September 23...

  • McEwen and Davis speak

    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    Australians Robbie McEwen (2nd in Zolder 2002) and Allan Davis (4th in Verona 2004) today spoke...

    Australians Robbie McEwen (2nd in Zolder 2002) and Allan Davis (4th in Verona 2004) today spoke about their expectations of Sunday's 273km elite men's road race at the World Championships in Madrid.

    Robbie McEwen

    Q: You are being touted as one of the favourites for Sunday how does that sit with you?

    RM: I feel like I'm one of the favourites. My preparation's gone really well. I took a relaxed approach through August after the Tour (de France) and then really started my build up in the last week of August. Everything fell into place at the right time and I've been able to win a couple of hard races then fine tune my training in the last week so now I'm ready for the race to start.

    Q: What are your impressions of the course.

    RM: It's a really fast course and I think it will be a race of attrition with guys disappearing off the back. I think if we're going to sprint for the world title it won't be a big group at all, maybe 40 guys, but it's a course that's also good for attacking riders like Paolo Bettini, Peter Van Petegem, and just about the whole Spanish team, so it will be a race on a 'knife's edge' - one where attacking guys will have to be really good to stay away, and to get them back, the sprinters' teams are going to have to be really organised. It's going to be a difficult world title like every world title is. Also unpredictable because at World's, there is always somebody who pops up you don't expect. Even with the two relatively small climbs, after the 200km mark, they are going to get pretty hard, and the 273km distance will sort out the men from the boys.

    Q: Bearing in mind those short, sharp climbs, did you tailor your preparation with that in mind?

    RM: Definitely. Part of my program was doing some races not completely suited to me but that were really good training outings with this in...

  • The "McEwen corner" modified

    The course (in red)
    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    Following concerns raised by riders in recent days that the final bend before the finish of the road...

    Following concerns raised by riders in recent days that the final bend before the finish of the road course of the World Championships was dangerous, race organizers announced today that the final approach to the line will be modified. The original parcours had a final 180 degree turn with 600 meters to go that was nicknamed the "McEwen corner" because of the Australian sprinter's renowned bike handling ability, but this now will be changed to make it safer. Instead, they will use a side road to take a more sweeping approach to the bend, swinging wider than originally planned in order to reduce the turning angle. This should lead to a faster, but safer final turn.

    The UCI's technical director Charly Mottet made the decision to change that part of the course. In this area, the route was behind a bridge in a zone called Nuevos Ministerios in the city of Madrid.

  • Arndt sick, but looking for double

    2004 winner Judith Arndt (Germany)
    Article published:
    September 24, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid Many of the riders who placed in the top positions in the time...

    By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Madrid

    Many of the riders who placed in the top positions in the time trial will take the start on Saturday in the women's road race in the 2005 World Championships in Madrid. Judith Arndt (Germany), who finished fourth in the TT on Wednesday, will wear the number 1 after her great victory in the road race in Verona 2004. She had a viral problem recently, and this could well affect her tomorrow. We will see how the German performs on the Madrid circuit, but she has too strong sprinting teammates in Ina-Yoko Teutenberg and Regina Schleicher, either of whom could take the gold if it does come down to a bunch sprint.

    Former Grande Boucle Féminin champion Joane Somarriba, who did so well in the race against the clock and got the silver medal on the Casa de Campo course, is also a candidate for the win at the Paseo de la Castellana. Somarriba wants to retire with another medal after her brilliant career, and will have a strong team behind her.

    Third in the time trial, USA's Kristin Armstrong will also start the 126km road race. Amber Neben and Christine Thorburn, both in the top 10 in the time trial, and sprinter Tina Mayolo Pic will be together with Armstrong in a seven-woman team, that looks to be very versatile on paper. Germany, Italy and the U.S. are the only three outfits that will start with seven riders. The teams with six riders include Australia, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Russia, Lithuania, France, Spain, New Zealand, Great Britain, Poland, Belgium and Canada. Therefore, these teams will have the greatest chances of winning, considering the number of riders on the road.

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