First Edition Cycling News for November 11, 2006
Edited by Sue George
Gaumont's lawyer laments cycling's lost generation
Frédéric Champagne, the lawyer for Philippe Gaumont, pleaded today for the sport of cycling not to forget "cycling's lost generation." According to AFP, he said his client had been "attacked for breaking the law of silence" that has protected doping in cycling. He lamented the fact that his client and others had come onto the cycling scene just as EPO was emerging and creating "an apocalyptic situation."
"The peloton is not clean," said Gaumont's lawyer. "The circuit is completely infected with doping. This is the practice that Philippe Gaumont denounces. And he has paid for doing so."
As reported yesterday by Cyclingnews, the public prosecutor earlier asked that David Millar, who returned to the peloton this year after serving a two-year suspension, not be sentenced to prison. The same prosecutor recommended a prison term of four to six months for Boguslaw Madejak, but requested suspended sentences for Gaumont, Mederic Clain, Massimiliano Lelli, Robert Sassone, Marek Rutkiewicz and Daniel Majewski, and pharmacist Pierre Ben Yamin.
The riders and ex-riders were on trial for doping with amphetamines, hormones, steroids, and diuretics (for covering the doping products) between 2001 and 2004. Ten people are on trial in Nanterre, France, for doping charges. The judge will render a verdict in the case on January 19, 2007.
The affair originated when a Polish Cofidis rider was caught with the banned substance EPO at an airport. Gaumont wrote a book about the doping practices of the team. His lawyer emphasized that Gaumont had cooperated with authorities from the start "because he had nothing to lose," according to AFP.
David Millar's lawyer Paul-Albert Iweins said, "During this case, we have heard, 'we want cycling to be clean'...the sport must change; otherwise it will disappear."
Vos: the Perfect Year
Dutch rider Marianne Vos (Team DSB Bank-Ballast Nedam) surprised the world and herself with winning performances throughout the 2006 season. Her dual world titles in road and cross would have been capstones in any veteran racers successful season, but they stand out as unusually impressive for a first-year senior.
When asked about her success in 2006, the unassuming Vos replied, "I didnt expect it for this year. This was my first year in the elite category. Last year, I was still a junior, mostly racing one-day races. [This year] I thought I would start low and work my way up. I figured Id try to stay in front in national-level races, and race internationally with the goal of gaining some experience. But I had a really good season and started to win in April. "I didnt expect to be European, national, and world champion so soon."
Only 19-years-old, Vos has shown the world a near-perfect transition from junior to senior ranks. What drives this young Dutch racer to success? Cyclingnews caught up with Vos, also a university student in biomedical science, between cross victories at Koppenberg in Belgium and the World Cup #4 in Treviso, Italy, to discuss how she got into racing, her career going forward, and how she balances racing and school.
To read the full feature, click here.
Saunier Duval-Prodir feeder team formed
By Gregor Brown
Team Spercenigo, a club in San Biagio di Callalta (Treviso), has been around for many years but for next season, the squad will step up to a new level by including Elite and Under-23 riders. The team manager will be none other than Matteo Algeri, who is also a director sportif for Saunier Duval-Prodir.
"My involvement will be as team manager, while keeping my director sportif responsibilities with our ProTour team," commented Algeri from Bergamo to Cyclingnews. "The team name is Moro Bicycle Line Scott, and it will function as a feeder team for the Algeri family."
Making possible transitions easier to the ProTour level team will be the fact that they are riding on the same carbon Scott CR1 bikes used by riders like Gilberto Simoni. Not only will the 17 amateurs use the frames, but so will the whole club. "Around 100 young riders will be on the bikes thanks to the donation of the Scott distributor in Italy," continued the former Lampre rider.
Matteo and his father, who is the director sportif Pietro Algeri, will observe the team in search of upcoming talent.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Massimo Bolognini
Africa kicks off Continental Championships
Yesterday's African Continental cycling championships saw South African Robbie Hunter and Mauritian Aurélie Halbwachs defeat the competition in the time trial.
In her first time competing at this level, Aurélie Halbwachs, only 20-years-old, surprised herself and the crowds by winning a gold medal after averaging 41.2km/h in the 11.1km (one lap) time trial. South African Ronel Van Wyk finished four seconds back and Zimbabwean Linda Davidson trailed in third at 11 seconds. Halbwachs lives and studies in Toulouse, France, when not racing in Africa.
Halbwachs said of her performance, "I was stressed, and it was not really obvious how to manage. But I was trustful of being able to do well. I did not know the course well beforehand. I am very proud [of my win]. I think that my title will help female cycling in Mauritius."
Hunter lived up to his reputation and expectations and finished the 22.2km (two laps) in 27 minutes and 45 seconds at an average of 48.5km/h. Fifty seconds separated him from Nambian Dan Craven. Another South African, Daryl Impey, took third in 28 minutes and 43 seconds.
Hunter said after the race, "This title is important because it brings to us points for the world championships. The course was appropriate for me. It was good. I am glad to win the title for the team."
Results can be found here. The road races will occur on Sunday.
McQuaid on African cycling
From Africa, UCI president Pat McQuaid commented on the continental championships happening this weekend. "My first impression of these African championships is that there is a very good atmosphere here, and the organization is impeccable. We knew that it would be so here in Mauritius." McQuaid was slated to speak about the UCI's involvement and support of African Cycling.
McQuaid said he was pleased to see that cycling was becoming more organized in Africa, but he acknowledged that monetary and transportation resources would limit the sport's growth on the continent. Noting that many countries have a long way to go to get to the top level in cycling, he pointed to a positive example. "South-African cycling is strong, and the other countries will arrive at its level."
McQuaid said that UCI points earned at races like the Continental championships would give athletes from these countries a better chance at entering prestigious races. "[At the African continental championships], we give points qualifiers for the world championships and the Olympic Games."
McQuaid had plans to vacation Africa after wrapping up his first full year in his job as UCI President.
Canadians launch 2006 National 'Cross Championships
This weekend kicks off the Canadian National Cyclo-cross championships in Nanaimo, British Columbia. The event is part of the qualification process for the athletes who wish to represent Canada at the UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships in Hooglede-Gits in Belgium on January 27-28, 2007. More than 150 riders are already registered for the Saturday competition.
On the women's side, Quebec rider Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) will defend her title from last year. Currently ranked 14th in the latest UCI rankings, Bessette is the favorite. She will be challenged by Wendy Simms (Kona) and Tara Ross (Cheerwine). All three racers competed last week in the US Gran Prix of cyclo-cross #4 in Boulder, Colorado, where Bessette, Simms, and Ross finished second, fifth, and tenth respectively.
Last year's national champion Peter Wedge, from New-Brunswick, will not start in the men's race. Fierce competition is expected between Greg Reain (Stevens Racing) and last year's second place finisher Geoff Kabush (Maxxis). Kabush was the 2004 national champion and is the reigning mountain bike cross country national champion. Mathieu Toulouse (Maxxis), top Canadian rider in the UCI rankings, Andrew Pinfold (Symmetrics), leader in Canadian national 'cross series, will challenge, and Andreas Hestler (Rocky-Mountain Business Objects) will challenge the two favorites. Hestler has just returned from the three-day La Ruta grueling mountain bike stage race in Costa-Rica and should be in good shape for this season-ending competition.
Carrasco transfers to Andalucia Cajasur
By Antonio J. Salmerón
Spaniard Jose Luis Carrasco Gámiz, a member of the Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears team during the past two seasons, has reached a contractual agreement with Andalucia-Cajasur Pro continental cycling team for 2007. Born in Jaén, Andalucia, the 24-year-old Spanish climber played an important role with the Caisse d'Epargne-Illes Balears during the last two Giro d'Italias. He looks forward to putting his climbing ability to work for Andalucia Cajasur.
Of his new team, Carrasco said, "[it] has interesting prospects for the next season including the chance to take part in the Vuelta 2007. He thanked his new team for the support they have given him. At the same time, he shared words of praise for his former team. Caisse d'Epargne Illes Balears gave me the opportunity to race in the Giro of Italy, one of the great races," said Carrasco.
Velasco completes 2007 Euskaltel-Euskadi roster
By Antonio J. Salmerón
The Euskaltel-Euskadi Pro Tour team has finalized its team roster for 2007 with the signing of Iván Velasco. The promising, young Basque rider comes from the Orbea continental team.
At 26-years-old, Velasco is the fourth new team member signed from Orbea after Rubén Perez, Beñat Albizuri, and Alan Perez. The team will be sponsored by the Euskadi Foundation and directed by Jon Odriozola. Samuel Sánchez will fill the role of team leader.
Australian track team announced for Oceania games
Cycling Australia named its track team for the Oceania Cycling Championships coming to Australia's newest indoor velodrome, the Joe Ciavola Velodrome, in Melbourne on November 23-26.
A complete list of team members, with their home states, is below by category.
Zak Dempster (Vic)
Skye-Lee Armstrong (NSW)
Jack Bobridge (SA)
Philippa Hindmarsh (Qld)
Colleges in Eastern US vie for 'cross series
When round #5 of the Verge Mid-Atlantic cyclo-cross series comes to Jamesburg, New Jersey, on Sunday, collegiate racers will join the ranks of elite riders in events held that day.
The Jamesberg race is part of the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference (ECCC) 'cross season, a 10-round series run in conjunction with the Verge NECCS races, MAC races, and a few select non-series events. The purpose of the series is to bring team-oriented collegiate racing to already-established cyclo-cross races in order to support the future growth of this cycling discipline. The ECCC is known for its many years of fielding strong road, mountain bike, and track teams at collegiate national events.
Going into this weekend, Rutgers has an almost 80 point lead over Division I rival Harvard University. Sunday's race will pit Rutgers against Ivy league riders from Princeton, Cornell, UPenn, and Columbia. Buoyed by its hometown advantage, Rutgers is expected to extend its lead in the conference series. The school earned its advantage with strong performances at other events so far this year including the opening round of the collegiate series at MAC #3 Beacon at Bridgeton, New Jersey, the Chainbiter 8.0 in Farmington, Connecticut, and the Nittany Lion 'Cross at the Lehigh Valley Campus of Penn State.
Northern California team recruiting riders
The Pacific State Bank/Anderson Homes Cycling Team, based in Northern California, is growing in 2007. The Category 1 amateur team is looking for two more riders for road and crit races in Northern California and in the NRC series throughout 2007. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2006)