87 riders, including Di Luca, Bettini, Valverde, Moncoutié, Chavanel, Wesemann, Voigt, Dekker, Gilbert, Kirchen and Jeker took part in the meeting of the CPA (riders association) that was held in Liège under Francesco Moser's presidency. Expressing their desire to play an increasingly important role within professional cycling, they asked the International Cycling Union to be more attentive to their opinions.
Among other points, the riders expressed themselves about the road racing reform, the ProTour, which the riders generally support. Nevertheless, the rider representatives expect their minimum salary to proportionally increase with the growing number of race days required by all the UCI ProTour teams. It was concluded that the amount of €50,000 will have to be reached in the next few years.
Regarding safety, the riders pointed out that the main areas of danger in their profession were the race finish zones, and that these had to be made less dangerous. As the safety in all the events represents an absolute priority for the riders, they decided to give up any opposition to the new regulation concerning compulsory helmet wearing.
The riders accepted the principle of the participation of the professional continental teams in the UCI ProTour events. However, they pointed out that all the participants in the same race should be subjected to the same rules with regard to the fight against doping (medical monitoring, and the riders' whereabouts for out-of-competition testing).
The riders who will represent the teams within the CPA - whose names are yet to be announced - will meet again on Friday, May 6, 2005 in Reggio Calabria.
Tour de Georgia tech: The road a-Hed
Steve Hed is the aerodynamics guru who makes sure that Lance Armstrong and the Discovery Channel team have the quickest, slipperiest equipment for the all-important time trials in events like Georgia and the Tour de France. Cyclingnews' Mark Zalewski spoke to Hed before the Georgia stage three time trial to find out what's new and what's coming in time trial equipment.
While all of the teams of the Tour de Georgia were busy preparing their time trial machines for the stage three time trial, Steve Hed of Hed Design was thinking ahead for the Tour de France time trials. Hed was on hand in the Discovery Channel camp making last-minute adjustments and getting valuable feedback from Lance and Co. on how to improve the aerodynamics and performance of the Trek speed machines.
Cyclingnews' was able to have a chat with the guru behind many of the latest advancements in bicycle aerodynamics in between tweaks and adjustments. We kicked off by asking Hed about the most recent improvements in time trial technology.
Steve Hed: It's interesting. Time trial bikes are finally catching up. Now what you are seeing is going to be interesting -- to see who does the next [big] redesign. I mean people are looking at what everyone else is doing and it all looks pretty good. Things are more sleek and a lot more aero than they were four or five years ago.
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