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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

First Edition Cycling News for August 13, 2005

Edited by Hedwig Kröner & Jeff Jones

2006 World's at the end of August?

ProTour power struggle continues

By Hedwig Kröner

The Management Committee of the International Pro Cycling Teams Organisation (AIGCP) has held a meeting in San Sebastian, Spain, one day prior to the ProTour Classic of the same name and has, in an official communiqué, reiterated its support of the International Cycling Union (UCI) in its conflict with the Grand Tour organisers.

AIGCP president Patrick Lefévère is ready to determine the future of the ProTour in further talks with the UCI and all parties concerned. Topics of discussion are, amongst others, the rebalancing of the ProTour calendar, the number of teams and organisers' licences in the second licensing phase after 2009, the number of racing days in stage races as well as a possible rescheduling of the 2006 World Championships to the end of August.

If the ProTeams are not bound to participate in the Vuelta a España because it won't be part of the ProTour after this season, this last point suggests that many of the teams represented in the AIGCP do not plan to include the Vuelta in their racing program as of next year. Bearing in mind that the Vuelta has served as a preparation for the World Champs since the early nineties - but only because the latter event took place after the tour - the late season date of the World's seems to be subject of negotiation again. In this light, the rescheduling of the World's could be one more weight in the power struggle between the UCI and the Grand Tour organisers, who still hold nearly all of the top races and a sizeable proportion of the sport's media coverage in their hands.

"The AIGCP will respect all agreements made in 2005 and asks [the UCI] for confirmation on the decision taken by the ProTour Council on April 11, 2005, i.e. the right and not the obligation to participate in the Grand Tours and the monuments which would not be part of the ProTour in 2006," the communiqué finishes.

Liberty Seguros for Vuelta

Liberty Seguros-Würth has named its provisional rider list for the Vuelta a España, which starts at the end of this month. The selected are: Dariusz Baranowski, Joseba Beloki, Giampaolo Caruso, Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano, Roberto Heras, Isidro Nozal, Michele Scarponi, Marcos Serrano and Ángel Vicioso. René Andrle, Carlos Barredo, Jan Hruska and Sergio Paulinho are reserves. The team will be finalised the week before.

Some of the reserve riders will be in action in the Deutschland Tour, which starts next Monday with a 164,2 km stage between Altenburg and Plauen, and finishes on Tuesday 23rd in Bonn. The team for Germany: René Andrle, Alberto Contador, Carlos Barredo, David Etxebarria, Jesus Hernández, Jörg Jaksche, Sergio Paulinho and Luis León Sanchez.

In other Liberty news, the Clasica de San Sebastian will pay homage to one of the team's directors, Marino Lejarreta, on the start line tomorrow. Lejarreta won the inaugural edition of the race 25 years ago.

Finally, Australian Nick Sanderson, who is riding for the Würth-Liberty Seguros under 23 team, pulled off his first win for the team today in the 108 km Gran Premio de Lemoiz. Sanderson won a sprint of a six rider group that also contained his teammates Capitan and Antuña.

French national team for Madrid

Frédéric Moncassin, the French national coach, has already made public which riders he will probably take to the World Championships in Madrid in October 21-25, 2005. Moncassin told L'Equipe the names of six riders who have already made it into his theoretical selection, with three others still to be added to total nine - the previous number of 12 men has been decreased to improve the chances of the emerging countries.

Built around sprinter Jean-Patrick Nazon (Ag2r) for the obvious reason of parcours flatness, the team will also include Jérôme Pineau (Bouygues Telecom), Christophe Le Mevel (Crédit Agricole), Anthony Geslin (Bouygues Telecom), Carlos Da Cruz (Française des Jeux) and Sylvain Chavanel (Cofidis) if the national coach gets it his way. The three vacant spots will be decided on later, with Sandy Casar (Française des Jeux), Samuel Dumoulin (Ag2r), Thomas Voeckler, Pierrick Fedrigo, Laurent Brochard (all Bouygues Telecom), Cédric Vasseur (Cofidis) and Nicolas Jalabert (Phonak) being on the list to be decided on.

AG2R to next Italian races

French team Ag2r has announced its roster for the upcoming Italian races. Directeur sportif Arturas Kasputis will take the following riders to the Tre Valli Varesine (August 16), the Coppa Agostoni (August 17), the Coppa Bernocchi (August 18) as well as the Giro del Veneto (August 20): Mikel Astarloza, Sylvain Calzati, Iñigo Chaurreau, Philip Deignan, Andy Flickinger, Simon Gerrans, Ludovic Turpin and Blaise Sonnery.

Gerolsteiner and Illes Balears in Deutschland Tour

German Gerolsteiner team has announced its roster for the Tour of Germany (Tour of Germany): Markus Fothen, Sebastian Lang, Levi Leipheimer, Davide Rebellin, Ronny Scholz, Georg Totschnig, Fabian Wegmann and Markus Zberg will participate in the stage race on home soil. Team manager Hans-Michael Holczer hopes that Levi Leipheimer, Davide Rebellin or Georg Totschnig will place on the final podium.

"Georg Totschnig knows these mountains, at least from skiing," he said, meaning especially the 2670 m high Rettenbachferner in Austria, the second highest climb (after the Stelvio) in this season's European racing program. "He's our man, even if we still have to wait if his infection is completely cured. Georg is very motivated, also because we're headed to his home country. Levi Leipheimer will surely be with him, and if he still has his form from the Tour, who knows...?"

The Illes Baleares Professional Cycling team has also announced its nine-men line-up for the German stage race, which starts in the former German capital Bonn next Monday. David Arroyo, Daniel Becke, Toni Colom, David Navas, Sergi Escobar, Isaac Gálvez, Vladimir Karpets and Vicente Reynés will represent their team at the nine-day race, under the watchful eye of team director Alfonso Galilea.

Mr.Bookmaker and Barloworld for the Tour of Britain

Two weeks before the start of the Tour of Britain, Mr.Bookmaker-Sportstech as well as Team Barloworld-Valsir have announced their respective line-ups for the stage race. The Belgian squad, which won the overall team classification last year, will include former British Champion, Jeremy Hunt, and last year's King of the Mountains winner Ben Day in their six man roster.

Day, who has just returned from a training camp in Spain, is enthusiastic about his team’s chances in this year’s race and especially his teammate's chances for the yellow jersey. "Jezza is in the best form I have ever seen him in," he said. "I spoke to him last night and he is really up for the Tour, he has put a lot of preparation in and both us along with the rest of the team are looking forward to the start in Glasgow."

Accompanying Day and Hunt to Britain later this month will be Davy Commeyne, Christoph Roodhooft, Tom Vannoppen and Erwin Thijs.

Team Barloworld-Valsir's manager John Robertson, meanwhile, is also optimistic about his riders. "We are coming to the Tour with great expectations, especially after winning the last stage in 2004," he said. "The team includes last year’s stage winner Enrico Degano, who wants to go one better this year, as well as British rider Tom Southam who intends on doing well on his home soil, and David George who is a time trial specialist. I have a good feeling about the Tour."

Tom Southam, who has recovered from a terrible year of injuries, will is one of the six riders to line up at the start in Glasgow on August 30. "I really believe that the whole team has a great chance of winning this year's Tour of Britain," the Briton said. "The motivation within the team is brilliant, we are fortunate to have a core of riders who can all win the race. This is an important race in our calendar and for me - personally I would love to give the British fans a reason to cheer."

Southam's teammates on the stage race will be: Luca Celli, who recently notched up overall victory in the Tour de la Region Wallonne, as well as Ryan Cox, South African National Champion and Tour of Malaysia overall winner this year, Australian Sean Sullivan, and South African David George. "David is a very good rider and has been going very well this year, but so has Sean," Southam commented. "He is such a strong individual both physically and mentally he will certainly be in the hunt."

The Barloworld-Valsir Team for the 2005 Tour of Britain in short: Tom Southam, Luca Celli, Ryan Cox, Enrico Degano, David George and Sean Sullivan.

Sacchi joins Petacchi

Fabio Sacchi (Fassa Bortolo) has signed a two-year deal with Italian team Domina Vacanze, French website reported. Domina Vacanze is directed by Gianluigi Stanga, who turned Sacchi into a neo-pro in 1997 when he directed Team Polti. Sacchi will therefore stay in the same team as his friend Alessandro Petacchi, who chose to join Domina Vacanze before him.

Lequatre home again

After his terrible crash in the HEW Cyclassics in Hamburg, Germany on July 31, French rider Geoffroy Lequatre has finally been released from hospital. After undergoing two rounds of facial surgery in Paris, the Frenchman left the hospital to for his home in the Orléans region. Nevertheless, he still needs medical assistance.

Hope on Wheels against breast cancer

The first one-day cycling event for women wishing to find a cure for Breast Cancer has been created. The 'Hope on Wheels' fundraiser ride will take place in Natchez Trace Parkway, Middle Tennessee on Saturday, September 10, 2005. All of the participant entry fees will be directed to Breast Cancer research by the event beneficiary, the Minnie Pearl Cancer Foundation.

'Hope on Wheels' offers a 24, 62 or 100 mile ride for every category of participants. On-line registration is now available at In addition, you can download a form at tab How You Can Help or call 615-467-1936 to request a brochure/registration form. You can also request a form by e-mailing

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