First Edition News for July 31, 2003
Edited by Chris Henry
Armstrong not slated for Zurich World Cup
By Tim Maloney / European Editor
Fresh from his 5th straight Tour De France victory, his "toughest" ever, Lance Armstrong told Cyclingnews that despite reports that he would face off with rival Jan Ullrich in the World Cup, "the Zurich news is wrong. I'll be far from Zurich that weekend." Indeed, Lance has clearly told the media that he needs a break from cycling and wants to spend time with his family after the "strange, stressful" Tour.
"I just want to get away from it all and spend time with my three kids," Armstrong said in an exclusive interview last Saturday with La Gazzetta dello Sport's Pier Bergonzi. "Just act like a kid and play with them... act like I don't have a care in the world, like they do. Luke is really involved with the fight between Spider Man and Green Goblin. Spider Man comes before bike races (now). Even the Tour. Now I want do what my kids do: go to the pool, play, kiss and hug them."
After Thursday's criterium near Aarhus, Denmark and Saturday's Breitling Cup in Karlsruhe, Germany, Lance will take some much needed rest and relaxation completely away from cycling before his final scheduled race of the 2003 season, the T-Mobile International in San Francisco, California on September 14th.
Dajka looking for hat trick
Reigning keirin world champion Jobie Dajka of South Australia is ready to assume the role of marked man as he defends his title in Stuttgart, Germany. Having surprised some of his rivals with a win last year, Dajka knows he will be among the favourites for 2003, and is ready for the added pressures.
"Instead of being underestimated, now they expect me to be there," Dajka said in an interview with Adelaide newspaper The Advertiser. "I'm definitely a marked man and I just have to raise the bar higher. There will be a fair bit of pressure on me. As a defending champion there are a lot of different things I have had to deal with this year that I didn't have last year."
Dajka will ride to defend his keirin title in Stuttgart, in addition to competing in the sprint and team sprint. "I'm in a lot better form now than I was at the same time last year," he noted. "The keirin is my best chance but I'm looking at three gold medals."
See Cyclingnews' interview with Jobie.
After a decidedly lacklustre Tour de France performance, Davide Rebellin will launch back into competition this weekend at the HEW Cyclassics World Cup event in Hamburg, Germany. Following Hamburg, Rebellin will look to defend his title at the GP Camaiore in Italy, before continuing on the World Cup circuit in San Sebastian, Spain (August 9) and Zurich, Switzerland (August 17).
All will not be easy for Rebellin, however, who after visiting doctors at the University of Florence has been diagnosed with asthma. Many professional cyclists are able to control asthma symptoms, and Rebellin will now have to learn to manage the problem.
"The breathing difficulty will be greatest in stage races, preventing me from recovering energy expended," Rebellin commented in a Datasport interview. "It should be better in one day races, and I hope to demonstrate that on Sunday at the HEW Cyclassics in Hamburg."
Doherty Hotels Classic 2003 Launch
Tasmania's own post-Tour criterium was launched in Launceston Tuesday. The Doherty Hotels Classic is set to feature the stars of the centenary Tour de France but unlike criteriums in Aalst, Chaam, and Boxmeer, the Launceston race will once again be run in December.
Already signed for the event are green jersey overall winner and stage winner Baden Cooke, stage winner and yellow jersey wearer Brad McGee, Centenary classification winner Stuart O'Grady and former green jersey winner Robbie McEwen.
The 2002 race was a who's who of Australian cycling and this year, organisers have indicated that the race may have more of an international flavour with FDJeux.com team mates of Cooke and McGee and Crédit Agricole team mates of O'Grady, expressing interest in participating in the race.
At the 2003 launch, race director Dr. Stan Siejka spoke of his aim to double last years 10,000 strong crowd by introducing some exciting new aspects to the event.
This year, patrons in the finishing straight will have access to race vision on the giant TV screen that is regularly seen at South Australia's Tour Down Under. As well as the Meet the Stars dinner that was held in 2002, this year the general public will have access to the riders before the start with a special ride around the race circuit to help promote cycling safety.
Dr. Siejka hopes to use the race to promote cycling in Tasmania and to assist Tasmanian cyclist "make it big" overseas. He also said the timing of the launch would allow people who had just finished watching the Tour de France to plan their Christmas holidays to include this unique European-style cycling experience.
1 Hilton Clarke, Jr.
Nothstein to Northbrook Velodrome benefit race
Olympic gold medallist and three-time world champion Marty Nothstein will make a guest appearance at the Northbrook Park District Ed Rudolph Velodrome on Thursday, August 14, competing in a race to benefit the velodrome resurfacing effort.
Nothstein joins members of his Navigators Professional Cycling Team, the West Virginia Professional Cycling Team, and other national and international riders in a $500 Points Race sponsored by Alberto's Rides and Rags, a prominent local bicycle shop located in Highland Park, Illinois. The night will also include a full slate of races for local riders sponsored by Redline Racing.
Last resurfaced in 1989, 14 years of harsh winters and wet springs have taken their toll on the velodrome's asphalt surface. The Northbrook Park District, which owns the facility, has offered to fund half of the project, asking the Northbrook Cycle Committee (NCC) to raise funds to complete the effort.
Mount Holly-Smithville Invitational
This year's Mount Holly-Smithville Invitational GP will see 162 cyclist from 27 professional and amateur teams competing for $10,000.00 in prize money in Mount Holly, New Jersey on August 2nd. Riders will complete seven laps of a 12 mile circuit through Mt. Holly, Eastampton, Westampton and Springfield Townships before finishing with three laps of the 2.7 mile circuit through downtown Mt. Holly. Each lap will include the "mount" which is the highest point in Mt. Holly.
The 2003 event will include the return of the UCI Division II Navigators along with several Division III teams including Schroeder Iron, Health Net, Colavita-Bolla, Ofoto-Lombardi Sports, Sportsbook.com and Jittery Joe's. The Outdoor Life Network (OLN) will also highlight this years event on its Thursday Nite Summer Sports Zone show on August 7th.
For additional info on the race please call (609) 265-5020 or see www.co.burlington.nj.us.
Pro-Team Challenge at LVV
The Lehigh Valley Velodrome will host the Pro-Team Challenge on Friday, August 1st along with the rescheduled Corporate Challenge. The format for the Pro-Team Challenge will place riders in sprint and endurance disciplines racing for points counting toward an overall placing. Teams will be comprised of top athletes from the U.S., Australia, Scotland and Argentina, including two-time U.S. Olympian Jame Carney, and Australian Jeff Hopkins, 1997 Junior World Champion.
Each team will be comprised of three riders. The Pro-Team Challenge events include a 3-mile scratch, miss-n-out, sprint, and attack. The attack is a timed, "controlled" team points race. In addition, the program will feature a full slate of women's races including a 1-mile scratch, points race, and miss-n-out.
The Corporate Challenge will also take place with ten local teams, each comprised of six people, competing in a special time trial. Teams will compete in a 6-lap time trial with each teammate pulling one lap at the front.
Tickets for individual events are $6.00 for Adult General Admission. Tickets for the 2003 International Race Season are available now by calling (610) 967-7587.
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