UCI considering lowering bike weight limit - News Shorts

Tour des Fjords wants Kristoff; Sunweb backs Walscheid; Eschborn-Frankfurt announces team selection

A new weight limit could be in place for the 2018 season as the UCI considers lowering the current limit of 6.8kg, according to a report on bike-eu.com.

Reporting from the Taipei Cycle Show last month, bike-eu.com said the World Federation of the Sporting Goods Industry (WFSGI) has been working with the UCI on issues such as the weight limit, the 3:1 ratio for frames and forks, and use of disc brakes in the pro peloton.

WFSGI Communication Manager Yves Möri told the website that the governing body had agreed that the weight limit now in place is no longer appropriate. Möri said the WFSGI and the UCI are working to develop "a proper set of safety requirements that applies to a new weight limit" before the new limit is set.

"When that's OK'ed the new weight limit for road [bikes] could be in place by January 1, 2018," bike-eu.com reported.

Möri also said that the UCI had agreed to abandon the 3:1 ratio rule that governs the aerodynamics of frames and forks. With regard to disc brakes, Möri said the WFSGI and the UCI also agreed on common specifications for rotor sizes and axle dimensions in order to facilitate neutral support in races.

Tour des Fjords wants Kristoff, with or without Katusha

Tour des Fjords, the UCI 2.1 stage race that takes place in Norway from May 24-28 this year, announced the teams for its 2017 edition, but not among them is the Katusha-Alpecin team of local hero and defending champion Alexander Kristoff. The race wants to get the sprinter on the start line with or without his team.

"It's not a secret that racing in front of home crowds means a great deal to Alexander," race director Roy Hegreberg said. "We are currently in talks with the Norwegian Cycling Federation about bringing the Norwegian national team to Tour des Fjords.

"They would get to see many other high profile Norwegian riders who are not able to bring an entire team to our race."

The race organisers expect a decision this week.

The race has attracted two WorldTour teams this season: Dimension Data, the team of Norwegian champion Edvald Boasson Hagen, and LottoNl-Jumbo.

The 2017 Tour des Fjords has five stages, starting in Sogn og Fjordane with a finish in Førde, followed by stages to the south in Norheimsund and Karmøy before the well-known stages around Sandnes and the finale in Stavanger.

Teams for Tour des Fjords 2017:
WorldTour: Team Lotto NL-Jumbo, Team Dimension Data

Professional Continental: Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij, Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise, CCC Sprandi Polkowice, Israel Cycling Academy, Manzana-Postobon, Verandas Willems-Crelan

Continental: Team Coop, Uno-X Hydrogen Development Team, Joker Icopal, Sparebanken Sør, Fixit, Team VéloCONCEPT, Team Tre Berg – PostNord, Riwal Platform Cycling Team.

Team Sunweb backing Walscheid for Scheldeprijs

Team Sunweb will support young sprinter Max Walscheid during Wednesday's Scheldeprijs, providing the 23-year-old German with an experienced lead-out if he can make the front group at the end of the 202km semi-Classic.

Walscheid, who won five sprint stages at the Tour of Hainan last year, will benefit from the experience of Phil Bauhaus, Ramon Sinkeldam and Mike Teunissen in the sprint, while Bert De Backer, Lennard Hofstede, Lennard Kamna and Zico Waeytens will work to keep him fresh and in position throughout the day.

"Wind could be a factor in the race," said Team Sunweb coach Tom Veelers. "In that case we will make sure that we are in the right place at the right time. With mainly flat roads and a few cobbled sections, the team will work to ensure that Max is in as fresh as possible condition for the sprint. We have a strong lead-out with fast guys like Ramon, Phil and Mike, and this is also a good chance to further fine-tune the sprint preparation process with Bert as our road captain."

Team Sunweb for Scheldeprijs: Phil Bauhaus, Bert De Backer, Lennard Hofstede, Lennard Kämna, Ramon Sinkeldam, Mike Teunissen, Zico Waeytens, Max Walscheid

Eschborn-Frankfurt announces team selection

The Eschborn-Frankfurt 'Rund um den Finanzplatz', newly upgraded to the WorldTour for 2017, revealed the line-up of teams set to attend the May 1 event.

A press release from organiser ASO announced 11 WorldTour squads that will head to Germany next month: AG2R La Mondiale, BMC Racing, Bora-Hansgrohe, Cannondale-Drapac, Lotto Soudal, Quick-Step Floors, Team Sunweb, Team Katusha-Alpecin, Team LottoNl-Jumbo, Trek-Segafredo and UAE Team Emirates.

Eight Pro Continental teams will make the start as well: Aqua Blue Sport, CCC Sprandi Polkowice, Gazprom-Rusvelo, Roompoot - Nederlandse Loterij, Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise, Veranda's Willems-Crelan, Wanty - Groupe Gobert and WB Veranclassic Aquality Project.

A German national selection will round out the start list for a total of 20 squads.

Headed into its 55th edition this year, the Eschborn-Frankfurt opens with some challenging terrain west of Frankfurt before concluding on an urban circuit in the city that has often led to bunch sprint finishes. Katusha's Alexander Kristoff is the defending champion, having taken a convincing victory in a fast finish last season.

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