News shorts: Wiggins confirmed for Tour of Britain, Cavendish takes a step towards Rio Olympics

Rogers collects 2004 Olympic medal, Colbrelli extends with Bardiani, LottoNL continue with Bianchi

Bradley Wiggins confirmed for Tour of Britain

Bradley Wiggins will be back in action on the road at next week’s Tour of Britain, with his Wiggins Continental team naming him alongside five teammates for the eight-day stage race that beings on Sunday September 6 in Wales.

The 2012 Tour de France winner has limited his road racing since leaving Team Sky in the spring and breaking the Hour Record but will use his national tour to work on his endurance for the winter track season and the World Cup track events which are vital for the Olympic qualification. Wiggins is hoping to end his career by winning a fifth gold medal in the team pursuit on the track in Rio. Wiggins last competed on the road at the Tour de Yorkshire in May.

Also named in the Wiggins six-rider line-up are Andy Tennant, mountain bike rider Mark Thompson, Owain Doull, Jonathan Dibben and Chris Lawless.

Bradley Wiggins (Team WIGGINS) races the RideLondon Classic

Cavendish takes a step towards Rio Olympics

Mark Cavendish took a significant step down the road to Rio at the weekend as he qualified for this winter’s UCI Track World Cup events by virtue of a strong omnium performance at the Dudenhofen Grand Prix.

The British rider was third behind Roger Kluge (Germany) and Kenny De Ketele (Belgium) on the 250 metre outdoor track, with a strong showing in the newly recalibrated points race.

Cavendish needed 90 points to qualify for the World Cup meets in Cali (Colombia) in November, Cambridge (New Zealand) in December, and Hong Kong (China) in January, which in turn offer qualification points for Rio. He has breezed past that total with his result at Dudenhofen, which comes on top of the 72 points he picked up with second in the omnium at the Revolution Series opener in Derby earlier this month.

He now needs a modest Omnuim placing in one of the World Cup events - or indeed at the Track World Championships in March - to be officially eligible for Rio. Selection, however, is another matter, with one spot available per country and Ed Clancy currently Great Britain's preferred rider for the event.

Cavendish on the track at Revolution Series opener

Colbrelli extends with Bardiani-CSF 

The Bardiani–CSF team has announced that Sonny Colbrelli will stay with the Italian Professional Continental team for a further two years.

Colbrelli has endured a difficult 2015 season but found some form after the Tour of Utah and won the recent Tour du Limousin stage race in France. Colbrelli had been linked to Team Sky in 2014 and was part of the Italian team for the world championships last year, where he finished 13th behind winner Michal Kwiatkowski of Poland.

“I’m happy to continue with this team and to be representing companies like Bardiani Valvole and CSF Inox which strongly wanted this contract extension,” Colbrelli said in a statement from the team. “I’m going to focus on ending the season in the hope of winning again and securing a place in the Italian team for the world championships in Richmond.”

The Bardiani-CSF team has focused on developing some of the best young Italian riders in recent years and has a totally Italian roster. Four neo-pro riders have been signed for 2016, while the talented Enrico Battaglin is expected to leave the team for LottoNL-Jumbo after Bianchi confirmed it would be the Dutch team’s bike sponsor for a further two seasons.

Sonny Colbrelli (Bardiani-CSF).

LottoNL-Jumbo to again ride Bianchi bikes in 2016

The LottoNL-Jumbo team has confirmed it will continue to ride Bianchi bikes in 2016, with the Dutch-based team also extending with the famous Italian brand to the 2017 season.

The likes of Sep Vanmarcke, George Bennett, Robert Gesink, Wilco Kelderman, Laurens ten Dam and Steven Kruijswijk have all used the celeste coloured bike in the last two seasons, choosing between the Oltre XR2, Infinito CV, the Aquila CV for time trials races and the new ultra-light Specialissima bikes.

"The last two years we have build a great co-operation. A result is the Aquila CV being one of the best time trial bikes in the peloton. We also worked closely on building a new bike for our climbers, the Specialissima. It proves there is a perfect fit between the two companies being both innovative with great team-spirit," general manager Richard Plugge said, announcing the sponsorship.

 Lotto-Jumbo's Bianchi Infinito CV feature carbon lay-ups with claimed vibration damping built in. Note the deep rear wheel

Rogers awarded 2004 Olympic bronze medal

Australia’s Michael Rogers has finally been awarded the bronze medal for his third place in the time trial event at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

Rogers finished fourth in the event behind Tyler Hamilton, Viatcheslav Ekimov and Bobby Julich but earned the bronze medal when Hamilton was stripped of gold after confessing to doping in 2011 and returning his medal.

Hamilton tested positive for blood doping after the Athens Olympics but officials mistakenly froze his B sample meaning it was impossible to test, so he was allowed to keep his gold medal. The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) and the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) then appealed to the IOC for the reallocation of the medals and this has now been done as part of the IOC recently announced Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms.

Four years after Hamilton’s confession Rogers was finally given his medal by President of the Australian Olympic Committee, John Coates in a ceremony at the IOC headquarters in Switzerland.

Rogers won the world time trial title in 2003, 2004 and 2005, being awarded the 2003 title after Britain’s David Millar was disqualified for doping.

“It was certainly a special moment when I awoke and read the news that I was receiving the medal. It will be an honour to receive the medal from Mr Coates,” Rogers said in a statement issued before the ceremony.

Michael Rogers is awarded his bronze medal for the 2004 Athens Olympics

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