Stetina back on home soil
After a marathon journey from Bilbao, Spain to Salt Lake City, Utah, Peter Stetina is back on US soil and ready to start the process of recovering from a shattered kneecap, broken tibia and four cracked ribs sustained in a crash in the opening stage of the Volta al Pais Vasco earlier this month.
The BMC rider spent 11 nights in the hospital after the crash, including surgery to repair the breaks, and will now be evaluated by the team's medical staff in Utah before launching into rehab. You can read more about his crash, the controversy surrounding it and his road to recovery here.
Stetina expressed his relief on Twitter, and posted a video of himself doing a little American-style grocery shopping.
Virtual ride with Jens Voigt
Fans of Jens Voigt won't have to queue up to ride with the now-retired German, they can do so just by logging onto the virtual training and racing platform ZWIFT. Voigt, now an ambassador to the Tour of California, will make a trip to the virtual "ZWIFT island) for an hour on Friday, May 7, at 10:00 Pacific time.
During the hour-long virtual ride, Voigt will reflect on his career achievements, including his nine appearances in the Tour of California using the game's text messaging feature. Commentator Brad Sohner will facilitate the discussion.
Zwift uses multi-player gaming technology to link riders' data in a virtual realm to simulate the group ride experience. Users should plan ahead to join the ride by creating a Zwift account (Zwift.com) and making sure they have the required ANT+ dongle to link their trainer, power meter and/or heart rate monitor to the game through their PC or Mac for the full experience, but it's not necessary to participate in the in-game chat discussion.
Howes falls short in Amstel Gold Race
Cannondale-Garmin's Alex Howes had high hopes for a strong finish in the Amstel Gold Race, a race which suits his abilities, but concluded the Ardennes opener with nothing much to show other than being the only North American to finish the race. Although he followed a promising attack by Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali with 28km to go and found himself part of a late five-man breakaway, he was distanced from the group on the penultimate trip up the Cauberg. The breakaway was soon caught anyhow. Howes finished in 112th place, 6:47 down on race winner Michal Kwiatkowski.
"Had the head, had the heart, did not have the legs. 364 days until the next #AmstelGoldRace," Howes wrote on Twitter.
North American news link dump
Ben Jacques-Maynes has no regrets as he looks forward to his retirement from professional cycling next month, but will first race the Tour of California, becoming the only rider to have started all 10 editions of the race.
USA Cycling had to do an about-face after naming two-time Olympic gold medalist Kristin Armstrong to the team for the upcoming Pan American Championships. Armstrong's abruptly announced decision to come out of retirement sparked some consternation among riders who have been fighting to make the team. A win in the Pan Am championship earns a rider an automatic invitation to the UCI Road World Championships, and a podium result there would earn automatic consideration for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, so the stakes are high. Upon revisiting the rules, USA Cycling decided that it had not published the altered selection criteria that allowed Armstrong to be included in the team far enough in advance to be applied to the Pan American Championships, so Armstrong was removed from the team. Tayler Wiles took her place in the individual time trial.
Logan Owen is looking to prove himself on the road after a 10-year span of championships in cyclo-cross. Meanwhile, 17-year-old Adrian Costa beat him to the punch, coming third overall in the Redlands Bicycle Classic - all the while using junior gears against the competition. He will be targeting the World Championships in Richmond, looking to better his silver medal of last year.
Chris Horner will not be racing in the Tour of Utah after his Airgas-Safeway team missed out on an invitation to the event.
Old mates Lance Armstrong and Tyler Hamilton don't speak much anymore, but they came face to face in the midst of a hearing for the US federal False Claims Act case. Hamilton described the meeting as "strange".
US event recap
USA Cycling held its first ever team time trial national championship in Greenville, South Carolina this weekend. The Hincapie Racing Team topped Optum and UnitedHealthcare to take a surprising victory in the team's home town. Optum came out on top in the women's race, beating UnitedHealthcare and Tibco to claim the gold medals.
The weekend also included the professional criterium national championships. Eric Marcotte (SmartStop) became the first man to hold both road and criterium US Pro titles when he beat Tyler Magner (Hincapie) and Luke Keough (UnitedHealthcare) in the sprint.
Kendall Ryan (Tibco) won the women's national championship after a crash in the final turn derailled the Unitedhealthcare train, taking out defending champion Coryn Rivera. Ryan was able to capitalize on the chaos to take the win over the evergreen Tina Pic (Pepper Palace) and Brianna Walle (Optum).
The Sea Otter Classic concluded on Sunday, with Nino Schurter (Scott-Odlo) a dual champion in the mountain bike events, winning both the cross country and short track. On the women's side, Catharine Pendrel claimed her first win in the cross country events at Sea Otter, while Jenny Rissveds (Scott-Odlo) won the short track. Jill Kintner and Aaron Gwin won the downhill events.
The pro road events at Sea Otter were scaled back to just a circuit race this year. Dan Holloway (Alto Velo/Sea Sucker) won the men's race over Canadian Adam De Vos and Luis Lemus (Airgas-Safeway). Amber Gaffney won the women's race over Leah Guloien and Jill McLaughlin.
It's always cyclo-cross season: Sea Otter once again held a 'cross race, won by Caroline Mani and Tobin Ortenblad.
Other North American results from around Europe
Tro Bro Leon:
32nd Logan Loder (USA) Amore & Vita - Selle SMP
Tour du Finistère
38th 124 Logan Loder (USA) Amore & Vita - Selle SMP
40th Alexey Vermeulen (USA)
51th Geoffrey Curran (USA) Axeon Cycling Team
54th Taylor Eisenhart (USA)
106th Logan Owen (USA) Axeon Cycling Team
DNF Yannick Eckmann (USA) Roth - Skoda
Tour de Picardie
7th Colin Joyce (USA) US National Team
67th Justin Oien (USA) US National Team
68th Miguel Bryon (USA) US National Team
69th Philip O'donnell (USA) US National Team
79th Neilson Powless (USA) US National Team
105th William Barta (USA) US National Team
6th Daniel Willett (USA) US National Team
11th Ethan Reynolds (USA) US National Team
12th Jack Maddux (USA) US National Team
38th Jonathan Brown (USA) US National Team
52th Clayton Stone (USA) US National Team
DNF Bo Knickman (USA) US National Team
U23 ZLM-Roompot Toer
27th Colin Joyce (USA)
38th Miguel Bryon (USA)
39th Justin Oien (USA)
49th William Barta (USA)
50th Philip O'Donnell (USA)
64th Benjamin Perry (Canada)
68th Adam Jamieson (Canada)
There will be a strong contingent of North Americans in the next women's World Cup round, La Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday. In addition to the Canadian and US national teams, there are six riders who will compete in the race with their professional trade teams.
Megan Guarnier, Evelyn Stevents (Boels Dolmans), Mara Abbott (Wiggle Honda), Joelle Numainville (Bigla), Karol-Ann Canuel, Tayler Wiles (Velcio-SRAM), Carmen Small , Andrea Dvorak , Heather Fischer , Lauren Hall , Laura Jorgensen , Lauren Komanski , Kristin McGrath , Alexis Ryan , Kendall Ryan (USA National Team), Allison Beveridge, Annie Foreman-Mackey, Kirsti Lay, Gabrielle Pilote-Fortin, Stephanie Roorda (Canadian National Team).
Ian Boswell will race with Team Sky in the Giro del Trentino, which begins Tuesday.
Americans Brent Bookwalter and Tejay van Garderen will join up with the BMC team in the Ardennes to race La Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday. They will support past winner Philippe Gilbert (2011) and past runner-up Samuel Sánchez (2006), as well as recent Brabantse Pijl winner Ben Hermans. Amaël Moinard, Dylan Teuns and Danilo Wyss complete the roster.
Chris Horner (Airgas-Safeway) will take part in the Tour d’Azerbaidjan next month after failing to get into the Tour of California. The 2013 Vuelta a Espana winner was 10th overall at the Redlands Classic, and was due to take part in the Sea Otter Classic this weekend, but did not start.
NRC continues with Joe Martin Stage Race
The USA Cycling National Racing Calendar continues on Thursday with the four-day Joe Martin Stage Race in Arkansas. Phil Gaimon (Optum) and Mara Abbott lead the individual rankings after winning the opening race, the Redlands Bicycle Classic.
Joe Martin teams - men:
Astellas Oncology (USA)
Hincapie Racing (USA)
Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies (USA)
Silber Pro Cycling (CAN)
ELBOWZ Racing (USA)
BISSELL ABG GIANT (USA)
UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team (USA)
Team Novo Nordisk Development (USA)
Lupus Racing Team (USA)
Orgullo Antioqueño (COL)
GS CIAO Cycling (USA)
Elevate Cycling Team (USA)
JAMIS HAGENS BERMAN p/b Sutter Home (USA)
Team SmartStop (USA)
Gateway Harley-Davidson Trek U23 Development Team (USA)
Canyon Bicycles- Shimano (USA)
Champion System - Stan's NoTubes (USA)
H&R Block Pro Cycling Team (CAN)
Hagens Berman U23 Cycling Team (USA)
Airgas Safeway Cycling Team (USA)
Isagenix / SeaSucker / Guttenplan Coaching (USA)
Team TIBCO-SVB (USA)
Colavita-Bianchi p/b Fine Cooking (USA)
UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team (USA)
Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies (USA)
Balanced: Bike Fitting & Coaching Cycling Team (USA)
Pepper Palace p/b The Happy Tooth (USA)
XIRAYAS DE SAN LUIS (ARG)
The Cyclery - Opus (CAN)
QCW Breakawaybikes.com p/b Felt Bicycles-JLVelo (USA)
Sun And Ski Women Elite Team (USA)
BMW presented by Happy Tooth Dental (USA)
Fearless Femme p/b Haute Wheels Racing (USA)
Visit Dallas Cycling p/b Noise4Good (USA)
Portland Bicycle Studio (USA)
Boyaca Raza de Campeones (COL)
Pain Pathways (USA)