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Bayern Rundfahrt
Photo ©: Schaaf

First Edition Cycling News for February 16, 2005

Edited by Hedwig Kröner, Jeff Jones & John Stevenson

London cycling complex announced

British track cyclist Chris Hoy celebrates gold at Athens
Photo ©: AFP
Click for larger image

The Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone yesterday announced the details of the new velodrome and cycling complex - dubbed a Velopark - to be built in east London's Lea Valley. While the complex is part of London's bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games, it will be built whether or not the city gets the nod from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

The cycling complex will cost UKP22 million to build and will include a 1,500-seat velodrome (which will be upgraded to seat 6,000 if London's bid is successful), an outdoor cycle speedway track, a 1.6km road-racing circuit and a cross-country mountain bike course.

Announcing the plans, Livingstone said: "These new facilities will nurture our current and future UK cycling stars and the wide range of facilities mean they will also provide wonderful leisure facilities. The Velopark will be built whether or not we get the Games, and will be a major step forward in the regeneration of the Lower Lea Valley."

Livingstone has pursued significant cycling-friendly policies since being elected mayor in May 2000, including the congestion charging scheme introduced in 2003 which is widely credited with increasing the number of people using bikes to commute in the city. Official figures for May and June 2003 showed a 73 percent increase in cyclists entering the central London 'congestion zone' over the previous year.

Cycling was one of Britain's most successful sports at the Athens Olympics, with four medals including Bradley Wiggins' and Chris Hoy's golds in the 4000m pursuit and kilometre time trial respectively.

"British cycling has shown itself to be a reliable deliverer of Olympic success," said British Cycling Federation chief executive Peter King. "But it has also used its existing facilities wisely, and this has assisted in the sport securing this excellent new facility."

British Cycling hopes that there will eventually be four indoor velodromes in Britain, with the new facility at London adding to the existing velodromes in Newport and Manchester, and plans in progress for a fourth facility in Edinburgh.

Bid chairman Sebastian Coe said that London already had 60 percent of the facilities necessary to host the 2012 Games, and that work had begun on an acquatics center and would now begin on the Velopark, which is scheduled to be ready in 2008.

Five cities are bidding for the 2012 Games - London, Madrid, Moscow, New York and Paris - with Paris and London believed to be the front-runners. IOC representatives are currently in London to assess the city's bid, the success of which is expected to stand or fall on the city's ability to solve its transport problems.

No Laigueglia for Astarloa

Igor Astarloa was not allowed to take the start of the Trofeo Laigueglia in Italy on February 15. The race jury reportedly turned down the Spanish rider from Team Barloworld-Valsir because his licence documents were incomplete. No further details have been made public yet.

Van de Wouwer breaks bones

Belgian rider Kurt van de Wouwer (MrBookmaker.com-SportsTech) broke his collarbone as well as his wrist because of his involvement in a crash on the second stage of the Ruta del Sol on Monday, February 14. He was riding within the peloton when the crash occurred around km 43 of the race. Van de Wouwer was hospitalised in Granada and flown back to Belgium.

Another hat-trick for Bates

By Kristy Scrymgeour

Kate Bates
Photo ©: Rachel Burke
Click for larger image

After winning all of her events in the Manchester World Cup in December, Australian Kate Bates backed up last weekend at the Australian National Track Championships in Adelaide to repeat her hat-trick performance. Starting with the pursuit, Bates took gold medals in the three events she contested qualifying her for the World Championships to be held in Los Angeles in March.

Cyclingnews caught up with Bates to see how she was feeling after the events and see what her plans are for the next couple of months in preparation for the World's. "I've had a good month," said Bates simply. "I'm feeling slightly concerned that I won't be able to keep going until World's, but...If you spend too much time on the track, your form slowly goes. Even my form in the Points race on the weekend [the last of her events], was starting to go."

In response, Bates said that she needs to keep training through the events between now and World's. "I don't want to peak now and be on a downer for World's," she said, pointing to a packed schedule. "I go to Geelong on Monday for the Geelong Tour and World Cup and then to New Zealand and straight to track camp in Adelaide, so no rest for the wicked."

Kate Bates winning the scratch race at the Australian nationals
Photo ©: Rachel Burke
Click for larger image

Despite her concerns of being able to keep this fantastic form, Bates is very excited about the way she is racing. "After I did a good time in the pursuit, I knew that I could win the other two events," Bates explained. "Confidence is half the battle. I thought that if I could win all three events at a World Cup, I could do it at Nationals too. I was the only one who went out there knowing that I could win, so I had confidence on my side. Once you start winning, its just a big snowball."

For Bates the win in the scratch race was the most exciting. "I haven't really done many scratch races. I knew what I had to do in the Points race, so that was satisfying but in a different way. The scratch race was very exciting.

Bates is pretty sure that the wins at National will qualify her for all three events [pursuit, points race and scratch race] for World but this has not been confirmed as of yet. "One thing's for sure," added Bates. "If I can keep this form going I'll be one happy bunny."

Eadie's season over

Australian Olympic bronze medallist Sean Eadie is resigned to the fact that his 2005 season is over. Eadie has been struggling with niggling injuries and after consultation with his coaches has reluctantly taken the decision to give his body a break.

"The problem is the left leg and lower back," Eadie said. "I've undertaken some stress tests and ultrasounds but there is no obvious injury. I think the only way I am going to fully mend the leg is to take a complete break. I've always had deadlines to meet, World Championships, World Cups and Olympic Games so the body has not had a complete chance to heal.

"Taking all that into account, I'm confident with my decision. Just knowing I can release the pressure valve a bit will help no end," the dual Olympian stated. Eadie, who was to compete at last week's Australian National Track Championships, has had a bad run of injuries since winning his 2002 World Sprint Championship and the lead into last year's Olympics didn't help his cause either.

Eadie said that he hasn't finished with the sport just yet. "I want to go to the Melbourne Commonwealth Games," he said when asked about his next goals. "I want to be in the best possible shape I can be in, something like I was in 2002 wouldn't be too bad. It's not that I have anything to prove, but I would just love to finish my career in front of a home crowd without all the dramas I had to endure prior to the 2004 Athens Olympics. I want my legs and bike to say the last words on behalf of Sean Eadie."

Cyclo-crosser Franzoi to Spring Classics

The Italian national champion of cyclo-cross, Enrico Franzoi, will extend his season into spring and participate in several Elite road races. Currently riding for Lampre-Caffita at cyclo-cross races, the 23 year-old will be included in his team's lineups at the Semana Catalana, Tour of Flanders, Gent-Wevelgem and Paris-Roubaix.

Reggio Calabria gets a date

The Giro della Provincia di Reggio Calabria has been granted a slot on the calendar by the UCI, and will now go ahead on March 28, according to organisers RCS sport. The 175 km one day race will start in Palmi and finish in Reggio Calabria. It's being touted as a prelude to the Giro d'Italia, which will start in Reggio Calabria on May 7 with a prologue time trial.

French and Spanish amateur races closed to foreign Continental teams

The French cycling federation (FFC) has aligned its new 2005 rules along those of the Spanish last week, no longer allowing Continental teams from other European countries to take the start of its Elite Open races, the highest level races on the French amateur circuit. Therefore, only Bretagne-Jean Floc'h and Auber 93 will be able to participate in their domestic calendar as Continental teams, as well as the amateur teams of the Elite 1 and Elite 2 categories of course.

Only a few weeks ago, however, the FFC had stated that all European Continental teams were welcome at their Elite Open races. Currently, Belgian teams Jartazi and Flanders, as well as Britain's MG-recycling.co.uk are racing at the Circuit des Plages Vendéennes stage race, and will be allowed to finish that competition.

DFL announces new partners

Amid the smoke, lights and dancing girls at the official team launch of the British Continental team DFL was the news of two new sponsors to the squad. Nick Collins, Managing Director of Driving Force Logistics, announced to the assembled media the addition of Plowman Craven and Associates (PCA) and Enervit to the team's sponsors.

PCA join Team DFL having sponsored the team's latest addition, Tony Gibb, for several seasons. Gibb debuted for Team DFL at the recent round of the UCI Track World Cup held in Manchester. Enervit joins the team as the official nutritional sponsor, supplying the riders with drinks and energy bars.

Following the official launch, the 14 rider squad is currently on a 10 day training camp under the watchful eye of the team's physiologist, Dr Louis Passfield. So far all riders have responded very well to the demands as the team prepares to embark on their early season race programme. The team will travel to Belgium on February 24 for the Beverbeek Classic followed by Vlaamse Pijl in early March.

Big Motors at Herne Hill

The recently saved Good Friday track meeting at Herne Hill, London on March 25 will see the return of the big motors for some hard core motorpaced racing. The organisers have confirmed that master motor pacer Bruno Walrave will travel to London to head a field of top pacers in the Prix de BPA Stayers race, using the Triumph Thunderbirds that are based at the track. Countries that have confirmed their participation in the meeting are Belgium, Switzerland and The Netherlands.

More information: www.goodfridaymeeting.org.uk

2005 Women's Prestige Cycling Series announced

After a successful inaugural year in 2004, the U.S. Women's Prestige Cycling Series will run according to an identical program in 2005, starting with the PoolGel Redlands Bicycle Classic from March 31-April 3 and finishing with the CD&P Bermuda Grand Prix from September 22-25. The Nature Valley Grand Prix (June 8-12) and International Tour de 'Toona (July 25-31) will comprise the middle two rounds of the four round series. The CD&P Bermuda Grand Prix will again be a prize for the teams, with the top ten teams after the International Tour de Toona to receive housing and a travel subsidy to Bermuda.

Lyne Bessette, who won the individual title in 2004, appears to be out of the picture due to a 2005 program that includes mountain bike racing and racing for a number of different road teams. 2004 runner up Katrina Grove has retired from the sport, leaving third-place finisher Susan Palmer-Komar (Colavita/Cooking Light) as the highest placed rider returning to the series. However, only 30 points separated third through sixth in 2004, which should make for a much tighter race in 2005. Also look for a challenge from Quark Cycling's new recruit Annette Beutler, winner of the Nature Valley Grand Prix's challenging Stillwater Criterium in 2004.

Gina Grain (Victory Brewing) will return as the defending champion of the sprint competition. Grain won handily in 2004, despite missing the Tour de 'Toona. She'll face a stiff challenge from Quark Cycling's duo of Laura Van Gilder and Tina Pic. Ina Teutenberg (T-Mobile), who's returning from an injury that limited her 2004 season, may also be a contender.

There's no clear front runner for the series' Best Young Rider competition. Kate Sherwin (Victory Brewing), winner in 2004, will be 26 in 2005 and so is too "old" for this division. favourites include Bermuda Grand Prix champion Lauren Franges (Victory Brewing) and Erinne Willock (Webcor Builders), 2nd and 3rd in 2004, and 2004 World Junior silver medalist Rebecca Much (T-Mobile).

The team competition is also wide open in 2005. Equipe Rona dominated in 2004 but was disbanded at the end of the season. Teams that have already committed for 2005 include Quark Cycling, Victory Brewing, Webcor Builders, Ford-Basis Cycling, Colavita/Cooking Light, CRCA/Aquafina, TDS-Schwalbe and Team Diet Cheerwine.

More information: www.womencyclists.com

Cycling trivia night in Sydney

If you live in Sydney and want to enjoy a fun evening with fellow cycling enthusiasts, join Australian cycling legends Stephen Hodge, Anna Millward, Kate Bates and more this Saturday February 19 at 7pm at Sydney's Bonnie Doon Golf Club in Pagewood (near Kensington in the Eastern Suburbs).

The night will raise money for The National Stroke Foundation and will include trivia, games and a beautiful meal as well as the chance to mingle with some of cycling's greats and hear their stories.

Thanks to Clarence St Cyclery, Trek Australia, Giant Australia and Alchemy, you will have a chance to bid for a 2005 model TREK 1500 road bike and a MT60 kids mountain bike, a Giant XTC3 mountain bike and a Millward womens' road bike.

Also in the auction will be a superb graphite drawing of Stuart O'Grady and Graeme Brown, gold medal winning duo in the Madison at the Athens Olympics, signed by both athletes, and a colour drawing of Stuart O'Grady winning the World Cup in Europe, signed by 'Stuey'. Both of these are original works, drawn by a Tasmanian artist and past Australian cycling representative, beautifully framed and presented, for the real cycling enthusiast.

Olympic Champion Sara Carrigan has donated an Olympic shirt signed by herself and her team members Olivia Gollan and Oenone Wood and finally for Rugby fans, bid for a jersey signed by members of the Wallabies. Australian Women's National Coach, Warren McDonald will be at the event so you can find out the secret to his success.

The night will cost $50 and dinner is included. Those interested can contact Kristy Scrymgeour on kristy@cyclingnews.com or on +61 2 9318 2644.

Team Veloworx Racing

Los Angeles-based Team Veloworx Racing, presented by Tyler Hamilton Foundation and Velo-Fit, has as one of its major goals U23 rider development and strong teamwork across all of its category teams. In 2004, only the first season for the non-profit organisation, the club racked up more than 50 wins and saw two of its members turn professional for 2005.

Click here for the full announcement

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