Damiani worked with Team Tirol in 2017, having previously been a DS at Mapei, Fassa Bortolo, Liquigas, Lotto, Lampre and UnitedHealthcare.
“He shares the same ambitions and values as our team and will thus reinforce and complete our management team, which comprises Alain Deloeuil, Jean-Luc Jonrond and Christian Guiberteau,” Vasseur said.
“I’m convinced that together we are going to reach our ambitious and realistic objectives in the coming seasons. Roberto will take up his role from December 1 and will be with us on our next training camp in Spain.”
Damiani will replace Didier Rous, who has left Cofidis for the new Vital Concept team, which will be managed by Jerome Pineau and led by Bryan Coquard.
“For me it’s a new adventure, and very stimulating one,” Damiani told Tuttobici. “I must thank my friends at Team Tirol, with whom I lived a very important experience.”
GP degli Etruschi facing cancellation
The Gran Premio Costa degli Etruschi will not take place in 2018. Race organiser Gruppo Sportivo Emilia has written to Italy’s professional cycling league to request the cancellation of next year’s race, which was due to take place on Sunday, February 4.
“At the moment there are not the minimum conditions for the organisation of the next edition of the Gran Premio Costa degli Etruschi,” read a statement from GS Emilia, who took over the organisation of the race four years ago.
The organiser said it had “already relayed the decision to the registered teams and has, in the recent days, sent a formal request for cancellation to the Lega Ciclismo Professionistico, with the hope of proposing the race again for the 2019 season.”
Held in Tuscany each February, the GP degli Etruschi has opened the Italian season every year since its inception in 1996. The Donoratico finale has traditionally favoured sprinters. Fabrizio Guidi won the inaugural edition in 1996, while Mario Cipollini triumphed in 1998 and 2000, and Alessandro Petacchi won six consecutive editions between 2005 and 2010.
Other winners include Elia Viviani (2011 and 2012) and Michele Scarponi (2013), while Diego Ulissi was the most recent winner last February.
ASO revamps Eschborn-Frankfurt
ASO has announced the route of the 2018 edition of Eschborn-Frankfurt, as well as a rebranding of the race formerly known as Rund um den Henninger Turm.
Having previously unveiled plans to revive the Tour of Germany in 2018, ASO announced in January that it had taken over the organisation of Eschborn-Frankfurt – Rund um den Finanzplatz.
For the second edition under the auspices of ASO, which will take place on May 1, the race’s name has been streamlined to the more straightforward Eschborn-Frankfurt, and has been handed a new logo and a subtitle of 'The German Classic'. Eschborn-Frankfurt was added to the WorldTour calendar in 2017, and will remain a top flight race next season.
“The German Classic has been a tradition since 1962 and is deeply rooted in the region on May 1,” said Claude Rach, managing director of ASO Germany. “The new design shows that, despite all the tradition, a Classic can also be modern: the new name underlines our self-confidence that Eschborn-Frankfurt is in no way inferior to the great monuments.”
The 2018 edition of the race will be 211 kilometres in length and will feature some 2,200 metres of total climbing, including three ascents of the Ruppertshain, two of the Billtalhöhe and the final ascent of Hainer Weg, which comes 15 kilometres from the finish.
“We have made some minor but powerful modifications to strengthen the character of Eschborn-Frankfurt,” said two-time winner Fabian Wegmann, who now works for the race organisation. “Back in Frankfurt, I'm waiting for the final Hainer Weg attack from the riders who want to avoid a sprint. A difficult course, endless opportunities to attack and an unpredictable result - it's a real classic.”
Alexander Kristoff has won the past three editions of the race.
BMC announces Sophos as cybersecurity partner
BMC Racing Team has announced that Sophos will be its official cybersecurity partner from 2018. The cybersecurity company’s logo will feature on the collar of BMC’s new jersey, as well as on the back of the team’s shorts.
BMC general manager Jim Ochowicz welcomed the announcement of the partnership with Sophos, describing it as “an excellent fit with the team’s DNA and spirit".
“Sophos develops industry-leading cybersecurity solutions to protect information and systems from all types of threats. The success of our organization is dependent on our ability to access online resources securely, so we are looking forward to working with Sophos to protect our data and reduce the risks of cyberattack,” Ochowicz said.
“A partnership with Sophos, a company outside the cycling industry, is an excellent sign for the team and the sport of cycling. Sophos' desire to invest in BMC Racing Team and the cycling community will certainly bring the team credibility as we look to the future.”
BMC Racing will unveil its kit for 2018 at the team’s training camp in Denia, Spain in December.