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Mont Ventoux
Photo ©: Sirotti

Latest Cycling News for October 7, 2004

Edited by Hedwig Kröner

Weekly Valverde saga continues

The latest rumour around Alejandro Valverde (Comunidad Valenciana-Kelme) has it that the fourth placed rider at this year's Vuelta is in contract negotiations with Illes Balears, supposedly his last chance to stay with a Spanish team if he doesn't want to leave his home country. Within the team of Eusebio Unzue, Valverde could fill the gap left by Denis Menchov's move to Rabobank, but the €2 million buy-out clause in his CV-Kelme contract is still the main obstacle for then rider's team change.

Valverde would take Cayetano Juliá and José Luis Martínez, also at CV-Kelme, with him to the new squad, as well as a physiotherapist of his choice.

Antequera to CV-Kelme?

According to Marca.com, Spanish national selector Paco Antequera is considering quitting his post to take up pro team management, possibly with the Spanish Comunidad Valenciana-Kelme team. His relations with the Spanish Cycling Federation remain very good - no wonder after heading a World Championships victory record with four Gold medals, three with Oscar Freire and one with Igor Astarloa - but the ex-pro rider feels that he has completed a cycle.

"I don't know what I'm going to do yet," the 40 year old explained. "First, I'll enjoy this gold medal, and then in the next few days I will decide on my future. There are a lot of possibilities."

Paris-Tours lineups

The following teams have announced their respective roster selection for Paris-Tours on Sunday, October 10.

Illes Balears - Banesto:
Chente García, Iván Gutiérrez, José Luis Arrieta, Unai Osa, Joan Horrach, Mikel Pradera, Pablo Lastras, José Antonio López.

Cofidis:
Jimmy Casper, Jimmy Engoulvent, Peter Farazijn, Bingen Fernandez, Dmitriy Fofonov, Stuart O’Grady, Cédric Vasseur, Matthew White.

Fassa Bortolo:
Fabian Cancellara, Francesco Chicchi, Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni, Alberto Ongarato, Roberto Petito, Fabio Sacchi, Guido Trenti, Marco Velo.

T-Mobile:
Rolf Aldag, Eric Baumann, Matthias Kessler, Andreas Klier, Daniele Nardello, Stephan Schreck, Steffen Wesemann.
A replacement for Erik Zabel, who cannot compete because of a heel fracture, has not been announced yet.

More youngsters at Gerolsteiner

The "second" German First Division team, Gerolsteiner, has announced two more young riders on its roster. The 20 year-olds Heinrich Haussler and Matthias Russ have both signed two year contracts with the team, currently placed third in UCI team ranking. "We sign on new talents like Haussler and Russ, because that's our concept of the sport," explains team manager Hans-Michael Holczer. "We have always supported young German riders very successfully and are continuing to help them get to the top through solid, regular build-up. These two certainly have a career ahead of them."

Hamilton at Interbike

Compex Technologies, designer and manufacturer of electro-muscle stimulation sports and fitness products, announced that 2004 Olympic champion Tyler Hamilton is endorsing the company's products. Hamilton begins his promotion activities for Compex this week with appearances at 2004 Interbike, North America's largest cycling trade show, in Las Vegas.

Australian TT Champ O'Neill to Navigators

Australian time trial champion Nathan O'Neill will be leaving his team, Colavita-Bolla, according to velo101.com. The 30 year old rider, resident in Georgia, U.S., is changing to team Navigators Insurance. O'Neill is going to have the responsibility of guiding his younger teammates, as well as being the leader of the Navigators team, managed by Ed Beamon.

Van Moorsel's new team

Leontien Zijlaard-Van Moorsel has found the sponsors needed to set up a Junior team next season. The winner of Olympic Gold in Athens will be coaching the young riders within the team, while Ingrid Haringa and Michael Zijlaard will be managing the squad. After the three consecutive Junior title victories at the World Championships [Suzanne de Goede, Loes Markering and, this year, Marianne Vos - ed.] the Dutch champion has taken up an important task for Dutch up-and-coming talents. Team leader will be the Dutch champion Sissy van Alebeek.

"We are very focused on the future with riders like De Goede, Adrie Visser, Marleen Binnendijk and Kate Bates," said Michael Zijlaard. "But the team's not complete yet. We have been able to keep Yvonne Hijgenaar for the track, which is great. We can expect a lot of her until Bejing 2008."

Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee bigger than ever

The 18th edition of the Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee cyclo-cross series was presented in Essen on Wednesday afternoon, October 6. This year's edition is bigger and better than ever, with an expanded field of 31 elite riders and a bigger prize pot. The start list includes the complete podium from the last World Championships (Bart Wellens, winner of last year's GvA Trofee, Mario De Clercq, Sven Vanthourenhout) as well as U23 World Champion Kevin Pauwels, elite national champions Dariusz Gil (Poland), Christian Heule (Switzerland), Jonathan Page (USA), Richard Groenendaal (Netherlands) and David Willemsens (Belgium elite without contract) and U23 national champions Mariusz Gil (Poland) and Jempi Drucker (Luxembourg).

The prize money has been doubled this season to €71,500, which includes an intermediate sprints classification. In each race, the first three riders at the end of the first lap will score 6, 4 and 2 points, and at the end the first three riders in this classification will receive €2,500, €1,000 and €500 respectively.

The final new addition is a kids competition for riders aged between 6 and 12 years. National coach Rudy De Bie, ex-World Champion Paul Herygers and ex-Ronde van Vlaanderen winner Edwig Van Hooydonck will be at each race. The races will start like formula 1 races with a red-green light.

The races

Race 1 - November 1: Oudenaarde-Koppenberg
Race 2 - November 11: Niel
Race 3 - December 18: Essen
Race 4 - December 29: Loenhout
Race 5 - January 1: Baal
Race 6 - February 5: Lille
Race 7 - February 20: Oostmalle

Elite starters

Bart Wellens, Sven Nys, Ben Berden, Richard Groenendaal, Erwin Vervecken, Mario De Clercq, Peter Van Santvliet, Christian Heule, Michael Baumgartner, Wesley Van der Linden, Vaclav Jezek, Dariusz Gil, Jonathan Page, Wim Jacobs, Sven Vanthourenhout, Bart Aernouts, Tadeusz Korzeniewski, Jan Verstraeten, Klaas Vantornout, Jiri Pospisil, Wilant van Gils, David Willemsens, Tim Van Nuffel, Davy Commeyne

Selected U23 starters

Kevin Pauwels, Geert Wellens, Mariusz Gil, Marek Pitouch, Jempi Drucker, Jan Soetens, Dieter Vanthourenhout

Prize money

Elite: €20.000, €13.000, €8.000, €6.500, €4.500, €3.000, €2.500, €2.000, €1.250, €750.

U23: €2.500, €1.250, €1.000, €500, €250

Northwestern Mortgage Corporation track team in 2005

Northwestern Mortgage Corporation has announced that it will be the Title Sponsor of an Elite track endurance team for the 2005 season. The team will consist of six elite men/women riders and six developmental/junior, men/women riders, totaling 12 riders that will be focused on track endurance and some NRC races for 2005. Based at the Lehigh Valley Velodrome, the new team will be under the direction of two time Olympian Jame Carney, serving as coach and rider. The team will be focused on long term development of track cycling in the United States, with both team roster and schedule to be announced officially in November 2004.

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(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2004)