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Bayern Rundfahrt
Photo ©: Schaaf

First Edition Cycling News for November 10, 2005

Edited by Hedwig Kröner

Heras' B sample analysed by three labs

In order to exclude the potential risk of a false positive test result for EPO, the Spanish laboratory in charge of the counter-analysis of Roberto Heras' positive A sample will collaborate with two other laboratories also accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). As Spanish Marca reported, the B sample taken after the Alcala de Henares time trial - one day prior to Heras' record-breaking fourth Vuelta a España win - will be examined not only by the Consejo Superior de Deportes (CSD) in Madrid, but also by the appointed facilities in Paris/Châtenay-Malabry, France, and Lausanne, Switzerland.

Earlier this year, doubts over the reliability of the Recombinant EPO urinary test have been raised, also leading to the clearing of a triathlete in August: Rutger Beke, whose alleged EPO abuse proved to be a false positive finding. In July 2005, WADA advised its laboratories that any adverse EPO test result was to be confirmed by another laboratory before being reported, so the A sample of the Liberty Seguros rider has probably received the same expertise. Regarding the much-discussed reliability of the EPO test (also thoroughly investigated by Cyclingnews' Chief Online Editor Jeff Jones), WADA is still certain of its efficiency.

"There is no risk of a false positive if the test is properly carried out," WADA Legal Director Olivier Niggli told French newspaper L'Equipe yesterday, who also reported that representatives of about 30 laboratories met last week in the offices of the LNDD laboratory in Châtenay-Malabry to discuss their experiences with the EPO detection method currently in use.

Meanwhile, German news agency dpa reported that Heras was being targeted for doping tests by the UCI at the Vuelta a España because he showed top form only a few weeks after his more than disappointing performances in the Tour de France.

Ullrich preparing for Tour 2006

Ullrich in Yellow at the Tour de Suisse - will he wear that colour again in July 2006?
Photo ©: Franklin Tello

Jan Ullrich (T-Mobile) sees "great chances, but no guarantees" for a Tour de France overall victory in 2006, which would be the second in his career. "I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that there will be no team time trial," said Ullrich, who will be starting a fist pre-season training camp in South Africa at the end of this month.

Another factor that could lead to the German's long-awaited breakthrough are the hard mountain stages in the third week of the 'Grande Boucle', and the great number of individual time trial kilometres to master. But more than this, Ullrich is happy that his personal advisor, Rudy Pevenage, will again be part of his T-Mobile team next season. Pevenage had been 'banned' from the squad by the now retired team manager Walter Godefroot since 2003 - but now that former pro and directeur sportif Olaf Ludwig has taken over this position, Pevenage will reintegrate the outfit for 2006.

"Important things have been settled in order to do perfect work," the 31 year-old continued. "With Olaf Ludwig as new manager, there's a breath of fresh air in the team." Ullrich also declared that the structure is now calmer "because there aren't any discussions about the participation of Erik Zabel anymore."

Furthermore, Ullrich is said to have started a new diet this winter. "The new diet [separating proteinated from carbohydrated foods to supposedly facilitate digestion - ed] does me good," the 'Kaiser' said. "I feel fit, not tired and heavy at all. But I don't miss out on anything and I'm always full." At the moment, Ullrich trains from two to four hours each day to keep a base shape.

Hondo attorney doubts EPO test

Michael Lehner, attorney for sprinter Danilo Hondo, who tested positive twice for the drug Carphedon during the Tour of Murcia in March, noted that because of the recurring differences between A and B tests for EPO, he would advise Roberto Heras to challenge the test. Nevertheless, Lehner refused to comment as to whether he would represent Heras, who has been suspended from his Liberty Seguros team after a positive A test for EPO taken during the Vuelta a España.

Regarding the case of his current client, Hondo, the German attorney said that he assumed the International Sports Tribunal TAS would uphold the conviction and suspension of his client at the hearing next month. The court is scheduled to hear Hondo's appeal of his two-year suspension (one year of which is on probation) on November 22. Lehner said that he will ask the court to clear his client of all charges, but thinks that will not happen.

If the sentence is upheld, Hondo will be eligible to ride in the ProTour again in March 2006, and German Team Gerolsteiner has already signaled that it would re-sign him.

Courtesy of Susan Westemeyer

An interview with Hayden Roulston

A big base for a big 2006

Hayden Roulston caught the eye of Discovery Channel
Photo ©: Christine Grein
Click for larger image

Hayden Roulston is one of two New Zealanders plying their trade on Pro Tour teams, the Discovery Channel rider having switched from Cofidis in late 2004. This year Roulston suffered injury setbacks that hampered his efforts to shine in the spring classics, and recently suffering a little embarrassment while at home in the South Island of New Zealand. He's primed for 2006, however, and spoke with Cyclingnews' Les Clarke about his plans for next year.

It's mid-afternoon when we reach Roulston at his home in Timaru, New Zealand, and he's just been to watch his uncle's racehorse run in a local race. She didn't get up for the win, but in a land known for its 'stayers' [horses that run well over long distances] there was surely plenty of competition. Roulston follows the tradition of New Zealand producing stayers - the big classics rider comes from an endurance track background and prefers long races so he can gallop all day, looking to outlast other riders over 200 kilometres or more.

With several strong performances during his time at French squad Cofidis, Roulston moved to Discovery Channel for the 2005 season, because, as he says, "When you look at the riders they've got, the results they've had, they really are the number one team in the world." He had established good relations with some of the team's staff, and they followed his progress. When he enjoyed some strong results as a first and second year pro Discovery decided to give him a shot, which suited him perfectly. "I went to Discovery because I felt it was a better setup, easier in terms of the language and the way things are run - I'm really happy that I made the move," said Roulston.

Click here for the full interview

Gerrans leads Ag2r in 2006 Tour Down Under

Victorian Simon Gerrans' performances have earned him a leadership role with the Ag2r professional team in the 2006 Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under.

Gerrans made his Tour de France debut this year not only completing the three week race but also scoring third place on stage 17. Last month the 25 year-old returned home and secured overall honours in the Herald Sun Tour, further increasing the pressure for next season.

"My Tour de France performance has had a huge impact on what the team expects from me," Gerrans said. "I think next season they will put me in a leadership role more often and that will start with the Tour Down Under in January. My 2005 season has also given me more confidence and increased the expectations I put on myself. I plan to start the season in really good shape with a view to winning a stage and maybe challenging for overall in Adelaide."

Gerrans will have a versatile team around him, giving Ag2r several options to pursue depending on the way the race develops. "It's a really mixed team with strong guys like Yuriy Krivtsov, who has great time trial credentials and can ride all day on the front, and Samuel Dumoulin, who is a good all rounder with a fast finish," Gerrans continued. "Then you have climbers like Sylvain Calzati, who won the Tour de l'Avenir this year, and Cyril Dessel, silver medallist at the French Championships, who can both challenge for overall."

Also on the start list is Jose Luis Arrieta recently signed from Illes Balears. "They all love coming to Australia and the riders who haven't been here before are really excited to be racing the event," said Gerrans, who rode for Australia at this year's World Championships in Madrid and also has his sights set on Commonwealth Games selection. While he is currently enjoying a break from training he'll soon be back on the bike to ensure he begins 2006 in top form.

The full Ag2r roster for the Tour Down Under from January 17-22, 2006: Simon Gerrans, Jose Luis Arrieta, Sylvain Calzati, Cyril Dessel, Samuel Dumoulin, Yuriy Krivtsov, Carl Naibo and Ludovic Turpin.

Further teams and riders competing in the Tour will be confirmed as they become available. For more information, go to:

Ceramica Panaria-Navigare complete for 2006

Italian Professional Continental team Ceramica Panaria-Navigare has announced its complete 2006 roster. The team led by manager Bruno Reverberi, which scored 25 victories in 2005, will count 18 riders next season, one more than this year.

Emanuele Sella (Ita), Luca Mazzanti (Ita), Paride Grillo (Ita), Ruben Bongiorno (Arg), Julio Alberto Perez Cuapio (Mex), Brett Lancaster (Aus), Sergey Matveyev (Ukr), Felipe La Vrede (Col), Aitor Galdos (Spa), Fortunato Baliani (Ita), Mirko Allegrini (Ita), Moises Aldape Chavez (Mex) and Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) will be the Elite riders in the team, joined by four neo-pros: Tiziano Dall'Antonia (Ita), Matteo Priamo (Ita), Maximiliano Richeze Ariel (Ita) and Miguel Angel Rubiano Chavez (Col).

Team Swift Cycle with Horner, Rodriquez and Curi

Team Swift has announced that their "Cycle with Champions" ride and fundraiser on Sunday November 13, 2005, will be attended by additional North American cycling professionals such as Chris Horner (Saunier Duval-Prodir) and Freddie Rodriguez (Davitamon-Lotto), Katheryn Curi (Webcor Builders) as well as the organizer of the Tour of California, Jim Birell. Cycling enthusiasts of all levels can therefore come together to ride with pros and talk about the upcoming Tour of California with the organiser.

Following the ride, Jim Birell, the developer of the inaugural Tour of California ( will discuss the tour route which includes a stage one finish in Santa Rosa. In addition, Chris Horner, Freddie Rodriquez and Kathyrn Curi, US National Women’s Road Champion, will now attend the event, which gathered over 200 cyclists last year. Other well-known cyclists to attend the event include Brenda Lyons (Victory Brewery), Dylan Casey, John Peters, Steven Cozza (U23 Discovery Channel/Specialized USA NationalTeam) as well as Roberto Gaggioli, Glenn Fant and Lynn Gaggioli from the Monex Racing Team.

The "Cycle with Champions" event is a fundraiser for Team Swift, a Jr. Development team based in Northern California ( The event includes 30 mile and 50 mile ride options through the beautiful Sonoma wine country, with a free catered lunch, a prize raffle and an auction.

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