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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

Latest Cycling News for June 16, 2005

Edited by Hedwig Kröner

Autopsy held to determine cause of Galletti's death

An autopsy will be performed on the body of Alessio Galletti, 37, who died yesterday during the Subida al Naranco race in Spain. Meanwhile, details of the circumstances surrounding his death have been revealed by Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, according to which the Italian Naturino-Sapore di Mare rider may have suffered a heart attack.

"He said that he was feeling pain in his chest," teammate Mario de Sarraga told the Italian media, explaining that Galletti was was riding in a group close to his during the penultimate climb of La Manzaneda some 15 kilometres before the finish. "He complained that his sternum hurt a lot," he continued. Igor Pugaci (Universal Caffè), who was riding in the same group as Galletti, recalled that Galletti stopped and got off his bike after saying that he felt "bad" and that he couldn't "get air". He then lost consciousness and, according to Giuseppe Lanzoni, Universal Caffè's directeur sportif, had stopped breathing when the ambulance arrived.

Meanwhile, the Naturino-Sapore di Mare team has decided to refrain from racing in the Vuelta a Asturias. The decision was taken by manager Vincenzo Santoni in accordance with all the riders. The Italian squad will return to competition on June 21 for the Settimana Tricolore (Italian championships).

Ullrich: "I believe in myself"

Jan Ullrich (T-Mobile)
Photo ©: AFP
Click for larger image

Jan Ullrich is confident for the Tour de France. In a press conference at the Tour de Suisse, where the German still leads the general classification after stage five, Ullrich said that he was happy with his current form. "I was very satisfied with my result at the time trial [which he won - ed.]. I will not let go of the jersey voluntarily. But the most important thing is that the team doesn't have to work too hard now. The race might get decided only on the last day.

"I've trained a lot and I've trained hard," he continued with a perspective on the next Tour de France, where the German will get his last chance of beating Lance Armstrong. "I believe in myself. I don't know if there's a specific recipe [to beat Armstrong - ed.] - you just have to be in good shape. And I've worked a lot to get in shape."

Another very fit T-Mobile rider could also be a threat to the Texan in July: Alexandre Vinokourov "I wouldn't have any problems riding for 'Vino' if he's the strongest in our team. If that's the case, then the others should be afraid! It will life more difficult for our rivals." Ullrich, who was happy for his Kazakh teammate when Vinokourov won the Dauphiné Libéré stage to Mont Ventoux, smiled when he said that "Lance isn't doing too bad either". As to the reports that Discovery Channel made a contract offer to Vinokourov, Ullrich replied briefly, "Vino is one of the best riders in the world. It's normal that Lance's team is interested."

With regard to further Tour de France contenders in July 2005, the 'Kaiser' said, "the Spanish are getting in shape, they'll be strong. And there can always be surprises, riders that you don't count on now." In the meantime, he is still leading the Tour de Suisse, which will move into the mountains today in stage six from Bürglen to Arosa.

Cyclingnews will cover it live, starting at 15.00 CET.

Haselbacher disappointed

Gerolsteiner's Rene Haselbacher was disappointed after finishing third in yesterday's Tour de Suisse stage five. He was considered the strongest sprinter in the seven-man breakaway group, which was away for 126 kilometres, but wasn't able to pull it off. "I had the enormous chance for the stage win. But unfortunately it didn't work out," he said on his website

He described the sprint this way: "The other riders oriented themselves on me, watching exactly what I was doing. As expected there were several breakaway attempts in the last two kilometres. I had to chase them down twice. Actually I wanted to open the finishing sprint, but Michael Albasini got in before I could and immediately had an advantage of a few meters. I couldn't catch him."

"I know I've missed a big chance," he continued. "But the joy of getting third in one of the biggest races in the world will come eventually, I hope. But I'm totally satisfied with my form, which is getting better every day."

Courtesy of Susan Westemeyer

Discovery for G.P. Eindhoven

The six-man roster for the ProTour team time trial to he held on June 19 in Eindhoven, Netherlands, has been announced by the team management. Stijn Devolder, Benoit Joachim, George Hincapie, Pavel Padrnos, Yaroslav Popovych and Benjamin Noval will put their skills to the test two weeks before the Tour de France, where their team captain will attempt a seventh overall victory.

Hamilton appeal hearing delayed

Tyler Hamilton's appeal to the International Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, Switzerland was filed on May 27, 2005. According to UCI rules, the American cycling federation USADA would have had 20 days prior to that to file their response. However, USADA asked CAS for an extension until July 11, which was granted. "At this point, we are hoping for a hearing date by late July," Hamilton said on his website.

Previous stories

Dajka gets three-year suspension

After speaking some harsh words last week, Australian track sprinter Jobie Dajka has received a three-year suspension by a Cycling Australia disciplinary tribunal, after receiving submissions from both Cycling Australia and Dajka's representatives over the past six days after the hearing. The disciplinary tribunal determined that Dajka had assaulted Cycling Australia Head Track Coach, Martin Barras last week at the High Performance Program offices in Adelaide. The suspension takes effect from today, June 16, 2005.

In a joint statement, Cycling Australia and Kerry Ruffels, Jobie Dajka's adviser, said that "the Tribunal took into account medical evidence relating to Dajka's state of mental health and as a result of this have determined that he may apply to have the penalty suspended and reapply for his licence after one year pending several conditions.

"Those conditions are that he seek immediate treatment on such terms as his medical practitioners prescribe and that such treatment include a course in anger management. At the end of such treatment a report is to be provided to Cycling Australia by medical practitioners of the treatment or programs undertaken by Dajka certifying his rehabilitation has been satisfactorily completed and that his return to the sport will not endanger the safety of coaches, officials or team members."

Furthermore, "Dajka will also be required to undertake 80 hours of community service for the sport of cycling speaking about his experiences, the difficulties he has faced and the lessons he has learned. This community work must be completed prior to the penalty being suspended. If the last two years of his penalty are suspended Mr Dajka will be subject to it's immediate reinforcement if he infringes any of the By-Laws or Code of Conduct of Cycling Australia.

Jobie Dajka's adviser, Kerry Ruffels, is pleased with the decision. "It allows Jobie to regain full health both physically and mentally whilst at the same time allowing him the opportunity to fulfil his dream of representing Australia again," he said in the statement. "I have spoken to Jobie and advised him of the outcome and Jobie made an immediate and strong commitment to fulfil the requirements as laid down by the tribunal. He accepts that his actions were totally inappropriate and that statements he made in the wake of last week's hearing were wrong and irrational. Jobie apologises for any damage he has inflicted on his fellow cyclists and the sport."

Creed pulled back by spectator

While racing in the USPRO Championship in Philadelphia on June 5, 2005, Michael Creed (Discovery Channel), found himself having an argument with an overly enthusiastic fan according to a team statement. On the ninth ascent of the famous Manayunk Wall, Creed was riding alongside Leif Hoste in the main bunch and hit the front as the field tried to reel in the breakaway. After his effort halfway up the Wall, Creed pulled off the left and began to creep up the climb.

At that point, a spectator grabbed Creed's jersey and nearly pulled him into the barriers. Thinking perhaps the fan was simply reaching out to pat him on the back, Creed glanced over his shoulder and saw the guy high-fiving his buddy and celebrating his move. Creed admittedly then "lost it for a moment" and got off his bike to go back to the fan to give him a piece of his mind. A very minor confrontation ensued before Creed moved on.

Courtesy of

Westside Cycling Classic with Alison Sydor

The Westside Cycling Classic, the fourth race in the province-wide SISU BC Cup Race Series, will take place in Vancouver on Sunday, June 19. With the backdrop of the coastal mountains and Pacific Ocean, several hundred of the best riders in the Pacific Northwest are expected to ride the extremely hilly 13.5km loop around the University of British Columbia, the beaches of Spanish Banks and popular Point Grey Village.

The organisers have announced the registration of Alison Sydor, current number five in the Cross rankings and winner of three World Championships. Also expected according to the organisers is "a certain comedian whose good friend keeps winning in July". Pre-registration ends Friday at midnight, after that time registration will only be available race day.

Funds raised will support the BC Cancer Foundation. For more information please visit

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