Latest Cycling News for November 23, 2006
Edited by Gregor Brown
Savoldelli Considers team Boifava
Sevilla, Gutierrez and Rujano to follow
After the announcement tha Daniele Nardello will be joining the team of Davide Boifava, it appears another big Italian name may be going with him. Il Falco Bergamasco, Paolo Savoldelli, could be following in the foot steps of the rider from Varese if his current situation with Astaná is not corrected.
Davide Boifava, team manager of Androni Giocattoli-3C Casalinghi, has formed a new pro-continental team for 2007 that is a fusion of the staff from Androni and Team LPR. The co-founder of Carrera bicycles, who courted Ivan Basso before he signed with Discovery Channel, is now in talks with two Spaniards, Oscar Sevilla and José Enrique Gutierrez.
Savoldelli has been linked with Astaná, even signing a contract with Swiss Marc Biver, but may choose to leave the team according to La Gazzetta dello Sport. The ongoing litigation between Biver and Spaniard Manolo Saiz (holder of the actual ProTour license that Astaná wants) could become even more complicated, and if Il Falco has an interesting offer from Boifava then Biver is likely to let him go.
José Rujano, the little Venezuelan who almost toppled Savoldelli in the 2005 Giro d'Italia, may also ride for Boifava. After personal problems effected his 2006 season, Rujano might have an offer to ride along side Savoldelli according to La Gazzetta dello Sport.
As of yesterday, November 22, the new team is in Calcinato (Brescia), the site of bicycle manufacturer Carrera, for their first training camp. The confirmed riders are Luca Celli (Acqua & Sapone), Raffaele Ferrara, Paolo Bailetti, Maurizio Bellin, Daniele Callegarin, Riccardo Chiarini, Marco Marcato and Luca Solari (all from Androni Giocattoli-3C Casalinghi); from Team LPR there could likely be Alessandro Maserati and Samuele Marzoli.
Fabian Cancellara wins the 2006 Mendrisio d'Oro
Fabian Cancellara has been selected as the winner of the 35th Mendrisio d'Oro, a prestigious Swiss award that is given every year to a top-performing cyclist. The CSC rider took out two grand wins this year; with a solo escape in the Hell of the North, Paris-Roubaix, and then taking the rainbow jersey by absolutely smashing his competitors in the Salzburg world championships.
Italian Marco Pinotti was so impressed with Cancellara's speed that he said, "The time that Cancellara rode maybe I could have done on a Vespa."
The Swiss award is not only destined for home riders; two years ago the award went to Paolo Bettini, after a year that included winning in the Olympics, and in 2005 the winner was Tom Boonen in recognition for his blistering season.
Cancellara listed his objectives to La Gazzetta dello Sport, "Sanremo, A race very strange and unpredictable, Flanders, a very fascinating race for the pavé climbs and the crowds, and Roubaix, it is like boxing in cycling, I have to go to defend my title. I would like it to rain the day of Roubaix, rain hard, then I can demonstrate that I am also the strongest in the rain and mud."
Jörg Jaksche has "been through hell"
By Susan Westemeyer
Jörg Jaksche has "been through hell" the last six months, but is ready to ride again. The German, who lives in Austria, told the press agency dpa that, all things considered, the summer could actually have been worse, after he was named in the Spanish Operación Puerto doping scandal.
"I continued to be paid by Manolo Saiz's firm Active Bay, got my money promptly every month and will try to fulfil my contract which runs through 2007," said the 30 year-old. He denies involvement in the doping scheme, "I know Fuentes but my contact to him had nothing to do with doping. I can't imagine that compromising videos of me visiting Fuentes exist, as has been claimed."
Jaksche has resumed training in hopes of riding the 2007 season. "The Austrian federation will for the time being, until they receive further information from the Spanish investigators, not open proceedings against him," noted his attorney Michael Lehner. "Right now, Jaksche could ride again, like Ivan Basso, when his team continues to exist. If it falls apart, he could have a problem finding a new one."
"I would like to continue, I miss the racing and the environment," continued Jaksche, "but lately I've had to ask myself: Is this still the right job for you?"
Read Cyclingnews' March 2006 interview with Jörg Jaksche
Alexandr Kolobnev joins CSC
Russian Alexandr Kolobnev will make the switch from Rabobank to Team CSC for 2007 according to todociclismo.com. After two years with the Dutch squad, the 25 year-old will ride for the Danes, joining other new singings Juan José Haedo (from Toyota-United Pro) and Matthew Goss (South Australia.com-AIS).
The 2004 Russian road champion is best known in Spain, where earlier this year he went on a 100km solo effort to take stage 1 of the Vuelta a la Comunidad Valenciana. Prior to his time at Rabobank, Kolobnev road for Acqua & Sapone and Domina Vacanze.
TEAm Lipton to contest the Geelong Aussie experience
Thomas Liese is a name very well known to Australian cyclists. Thomas not only rode for several European professional teams (Nürnberger, Coast, Bianchi), including the 2003 Tour de France, Thomas also contested six Commonwealth Bank Cycle Classics (for the Bosch team), and was a noted performer in the 2004 Herald SunTour in Victoria. The German is now the manager of the leading US based road cycling team, TEAm Lipton, containing the world individual time trial champion, Kristin Armstrong.
TEAm Lipton is keen to expand its racing program and has its sights set on contesting some international races, starting with the Geelong Womens Tour (February 27 to March 1), followed by the first round of the womens world cup on March 4.
"TEAm Lipton had more than 40 victories in NRC events in 2006 including national road and individual time trial champion, but to remain competitive we need to expand into a more international program," said Liese. "A short acclimatization camp on the Sunshine Coast near Noosa would be an ideal lead-in to contest the Geelong series but coming down under is always an expensive affair and without additional assistance it won't be realistic to bring TEAm Lipton in 2007 to my favourite country and its sport loving people.
"It is very good to know that personal contacts to very supportive Aussie friends, which I have created during my career, are still lasting," finished Liese.
70th Melbourne Cup on Wheels
This Saturday night is the staging of the opening handicap classic of the season, the 70th Melbourne Cup on Wheels, and numerous finals of the 2007 Oceania Championships which is also being held in Melbourne this weekend. Riders from all across Australian and New Zealand are slated to challenge the local Victorian boys, with many Oceania riders also choosing to compete in the prestigious handicap, promoted by Cyclists International.
2005 Champion Leigh Howard (Geelong CC), fresh off his win in the Doherty Tour last weekend, is back to defend his title, and is joined on scratch with Stephen Rossendell (TAS) in Heat 5. This heat also features four riders who just competed at the Sydney World Cup, Joel Leonard (Footscray CC), Shane Perkins (Carnegie Caulfield CC), Cameron Meyer (WA) and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Sean Finning (Castlemaine CC).
Heat 4 will also prove a tight contest with Kial Stewart (ACT), Daniel Thorsen (Shepparton CC), Travis Meyer (WA), Wade Cosgrove (WA) and Gary Mueller (Brunswick CC). In all five heats will be held with the top four from each progressing to the Wheelrace final.
The night also includes the 2007 Oceania Championships for the women's sprint and individual pursuit, men's keirin, plus the junior men and junior women scratch races. Qualifying for these events took place at the earlier Oceania sessions.
Headlining the Women's Sprint event is Kerrie Meares (QLD), 2002 Commonwealth Games Sprint gold medallist, while 2005 World Champion and 2006 Commonwealth Games champion Katie Mactier (Carnegie Caulfield) looks to be the clear favourite in the Oceania women's individual pursuit.
As usual, the men's keirin will be fast and furious with former junior world champions Mark French (Carnegie Caulfield CC) and Jason Niblett (Horsham CC), former Australian keirin champion Joel Leonard (Footscray CC) and 2004 world junior keirin champion Shane Perkins (Carnegie Caulfield CC) all vying for a spot in the final.
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2006)