News shorts: Boeckmans tweets for first time since accident

Dumoulin leads Giant-Alpecin for TTT Worlds, Degand returns to Wanty, Mamykin to Katusha

Boeckmans tweets his thanks

Kris Boeckmans (Lotto-Soudal), injured seriously enough at the Vuelta a Espana to be placed in a lengthy induced coma, has not only returned home to Belgium but has also greeted his fans for the first time since the accident. “Hello world! Thank you for all the great messages and support. One of my hardest rides ever but I made it! #NeverGiveUp,” he tweeted Wednesday morning.

The Lotto-Soudal rider suffered facial trauma with several fractures, a concussion, three broken ribs, pneumothorax, laceration of the lung, bleeding of the lung and swollen pulmonary tissue. He returned this week to Belgium where he will remain in hospital with further surgeries planned.

Kris Boeckmans on the podium at Nokere Koerse.

Giant-Alpecin for the Worlds team time trial

Tom Dumoulin will lead Team Giant-Alpecin in the World Championship Team Time Trial in Richmond on Sunday. The Dutch rider won the individual time trial at the Vuelta a Espana earlier this month.

“The riders are really motivated to get a good result,” said coach Aike Visbeek. But he remained realistic in his expectations. “Our aim is to keep improving our team time trial skills and the race at the world championships will be an important step in this process.”

Giant-Alpecin for the Worlds team time trial: Niklas Arndt, Tom Dumoulin, Chad Haga, Tobias Ludvigsson, Georg Preidler, and Ramon Sinkeldam.

Vuelta Stage 17 winner Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alepecin)

Degand from IAM to Wanty

Thomas Degand is returning to Wanty-Group Gobert after a year with IAM Cycling. He first signed with the Belgian team in 2009 when it was a Continental team using the name Verandas Willems.

The Belgian left for IAM Cycling this season, but sat out for long periods due to injuries. He started the Vuelta a Espana, his first grand tour, but had to abandon the ninth stage after crashing.

“To me Thomas Degand has always been one of the better climbers in Belgium. He has been underestimated in that respect,” said sport director Hilaire Van Der Schueren. “I worked well with him in 2014 and felt sorry to see him leave. He will still be able to make progress with the correct support. Thomas rides a good time trial, was national champion in the past, and knows how to ride uphill which takes him a long way in the shorter stage races.”

Thomas Degand (Wanty)

Mamykin moves up to Katusha

Matvey Mamykin is moving up from the Continental team Itera-Katusha to the WorldTour Team Katusha. The 20-year-old won stages this year at the Giro Ciclisto della Valle d’Aosta Mont Blanc and the Tour de l’Avenir, where he finished third overall.

“For me this is a dream come true. I was dreaming about a professional career, it was my main goal, but I did not think I could reach it so early,” Mamykin said in the team press release. “I am delighted with the fact that very soon I will become a part of this great and successful team”.

In 2016, the team “will do a bigger accent on the development of young riders. I think this development, side by side with our stars like Joaquim Rodriguez and Alexander Kristoff, is the strategy which will allow Katusha to stay on the top of the world of cycling for a long time,” said team manager Viacheslav Ekimov.

“Matvey Mamykin has had a very strong season and he has some important achievements in the prestigious youth races. He has a great potential and with the right course of development he could become a strong professional rider.”

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