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Dauphiné Libéré
Photo ©: Sirotti

First Edition Cycling News for November 5, 2007

Edited by Laura Weislo

Lead changes again in Dortmund

Erik Zabel and Leif Lampater lost the lead
Photo ©: Roberto Bettini
(Click for larger image)

On Saturday's third night of the Dortmund Six Day, the Westfalenhallen velodrome was rocked when hometown favourites Erik Zabel and Leif Lampater lost the overall lead thanks to a late race escape in the first Madison of the evening. World Champions Franco Marvulli and Bruno Risi, the leaders after the first night, spent much of the 222 lap Madison marking the lead team of Zabel/Lampater.

Late in the race, a powerful move by multiple World Pursuit champion and Olympic gold medallist Robert Barto and his team-mate Andreas Beikirch formed an escape with the Dutch pair of Robert Slippens and Danny Stam. The breakaway succeeded in stealing a lap, putting Bartko/Beikirch into the overall lead as they had begun the night in third place on the same lap as Zabel/Lampater and Risi/Marvulli.

All three teams closed out the final Madison of the night on the same lap, which placed Bartko/Beikirch on top of the leader board with 136 points, while Risi/Marvulli stayed in second place with 160 points, one lap behind. Zabel/Lampater fell to third with 155 points with Slippens/Stam in fourth place with 106 points, but are by no means out of contention.

The Australian pair of Miles Olman and Leigh Howard, scored a second win in the UIV Talents cup for U25 riders. The pair lead the Polish team of Mariusz Wiesiak and Rafal Ratajczyk with the Dutch team of Jan Geert Jonkman and Roy Pieters in third place. Oldmann and Howard won the UIV Talents Cup during the Amsterdam Six Day last month.

Sinkewitz "didn't invent doping," clears Bettini

By Susan Westemeyer and Gregor Brown

Patrik Sinkewitz continued his public relations campaign with an interview on German television's Sport Studio Saturday night. "I didn't invent doping," he said in his own defence. "As a pro you grow into it over the years. Doping was a part of the system."

Sinkewitz said he used autologous blood doping until the Tour de France 2006. He said he was transfused by team doctors Lothar Heinrich and Andreas Schmid at the the Freiburg University Clinic three or four times. Each time a half litre of blood was taken and stored. As needed, the blood would be transfused back "in the usual way". His last transfusion was after the first stage of the Tour 2006, but had to be cancelled when the blood didn't flow properly. "I was upset that it didn't work," Sinkewitz said. He never worried about any possible side-effects. "I wasn't concerned about it, I just wanted to be successful."

However, everything changed after the 2006 season, he said. New management which took the anti-doping fight seriously came in, a point team manager Bob Stapleton emphasized. "The Sinkewitz blood doping happened prior to the new management and significant changes in the team," Stapleton told Cyclingnews. "Those changes include an anti-doping program targeted at blood manipulation."

In the television interview, as well as in extended interview in the German news magazine Spiegel, the 27-year-old refused to name names as to which of his team-mates may have also been involved. "I won't say anything about my colleagues," he said, but indicated that the Freiburg clinic wasn't there just for him.

Bettini was cleared by Sinkewitz
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

He did mention one colleague by name in the Spiegel interview, but that was to completely exonerate former team-mate and two-time World Champion Paolo Bettini. Prior to the World Championships in Stuttgart this September, the German television broadcaster ZDF quoted the German as saying that he received testosterone gel from both Davide Bramati and Bettini. One day later he denied the statements, and in the recent Spiegel interview he reiterated this.

"No, it was not me," he responded as to who put Bettini's name in circulation. "I was out shopping when Bettini called me [in September] to ask for an explanation of the accusations that were going around. It was a complete error.

"Maybe the name of Bettini was said in the course of a meeting with the BDR [German cycling federation - ed.] anti-doping commission, but I never said that I received the [doping] products from him. These things were constructed by others. Bettini warned me, 'If it was you that said it then you will be crying.'"

Meanwhile, Sinkewitz hopes to return to pro cycling as quickly as possible. According to the dpa, the World Anti-Doping Agency is set to consider a new set of rules at its meetings later this month. One of the proposed changes would allow athletes who cooperate to receive a reduced sentence of one-fourth the usual time. If this takes and effect and is applied to Sinkewitz, it could allow him to return in time to participate in the Tour de France 2008. One-fourth of 24 months would be six months, and he is counting on the fact that the suspension would retroactively start with the date of his confession, August 30, so that he could return to the peloton in April - assuming he finds a team.

Jaksche asks to have suspension reduced

Wants to race in the 2008 Tour

By Susan Westemeyer

Jörg Jaksche has asked the Austrian cycling federation to reduce his doping-related suspension from 12 months to ten, it was reported Sunday.

The federation announced his suspension in September after finding him guilty of using EPO, growth hormones and blood doping. The violations usually carry a two-year ban, but he was given a reduced sentence because he cooperated with the investigators.

The suspension is due to expire on July 2,2008. He has now asked the federation to end it two months early, on May 2. According to the dpa Jaksche said, "I am continuing to train, and have had good discussions with a ProTour team as well. I want to come back."

He may be hoping for another chance with Team T-Mobile, for which he rode in 1998-2000 when it was Team Telekom. The team has been rocked by doping scandals, but continues to emphasize the effectiveness of the anti-doping program put into effect by the the team's new management which took over this season. "Further statements and accusations won't bring us any further," Jaksche said. "We know now, how it was. Now we have to look forward and see to it that an anti-doping program like T-Mobile has takes effect. That way cycling will have another chance."

The 31-year-old German who lives in Austria believes that he will be able to ride competitively when he is clean, mainly because he thinks the other riders will also not be using doping products or procedures. "More and more riders understand what this is about and what is at risk."

Astana to learn ProTour fate

Klöden at the bus
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

The Astana team will know the fate of its ProTour license by November 20, according to tuttobiciweb. The Kazakh team, which has had three doping positives this season faced having its ProTour license withdrawn for violations of the ProTour code of ethics. After Matthias Kessler was found positive for testosterone, Alexander Vinokourov and Andrey Kashechkin tested positive for blood transfusions, forcing the team out of the Tour de France and sending the team into a voluntary hiatus.

The troubles forced the departure of manager Marc Biver, who was replaced by the retired/un-retired Discovery Channel director, Johan Bruyneel. Bruyneel should be able to resurrect the reputation of the team by bringing Tour winner Alberto Contador and third place finisher Levi Leipheimer, as well as the addition of director Alain Gallopin, formerly a director with Team CSC.

Gasparotto to Barloworld

A happy maglia rosa
Photo ©: Roberto Bettini
(Click for larger image)

The first bearer of the 2007 Giro d'Italia's maglia rosa, Enrico Gasparotto, is leaving the Liquigas ProTour squad in favour of the Pro Continental Team Barloworld for the 2008 season. The 25 year-old from the north-eastern Friuli region of Italy signed agreed a one-year contract with team manager Claudio Corti.

Gasparotto was forced to defend himself after taking the pink jersey in the opening team time trial, when he crossed the line ahead of team leader Danilo Di Luca. He quickly handed over the jersey to Di Luca on the next stage before helping his fellow Italian to the overall win.

An excellent sprinter, Gasparotto took second overall in the Post Denmark Tour. He'll reinforce the sprinting power of the team along with South African Tour stage winner Robbie Hunter and new signing Baden Cooke of Australia.

"Gasparotto can be trusted to get results in the races that suit him and will be vital to the team if our race calendar includes two major stage races," Claudio Corti said.

Gasparotto has been a professional since 2005 and has three professional wins, including the Italian National Championship in 2005. Before becoming a cyclist he was an excellent football player and was part of the AC Milan youth team.

Slipstream adds 25th rider

Team Slipstream-Chipotle presented by H3O has announced that Colorado resident Blake Caldwell will fill the final spot on the 2008 roster. Caldwell represents the only athlete on the squad who has ridden under the Slipstream banner every year since the team’s inception.

The eleven-time junior national champion will join his twenty-four team-mates at the team’s first formal gathering in Boulder next week. The high point of the camp promises to be the official launch party slated for November 14th at the historic Boulder Theater. Tickets are available through the teams website, or the Boulder Theater box office. All proceeds from the evening will be donated to the Davis Phinney Foundation.

Visit http://www.slipstreamsports.com/ for more information.

Colavita/Sutter Home announces new signings

By Kirsten Robbins

Borrajo is well suited to the US racing style.
Photo ©: Bill McCarrick
(Click for larger image)

Colavita/Sutter Home presented by Cooking Light has announced its squad for 2008. The North American professional squad has signed several new riders, including Argentinean Alejandro Borrajo. Borrajo previously raced in Europe on the Panaria and Miche squads, where he scored several top ten finishes in the Giro d'Italia before he left Europe for the USA.

After completing a successful first year campaign with the Rite Aid Pro Cycling Team, the 27 year old has become the most talented all-round cyclist to hit the US circuit, achieving more than twenty podiums that include the Tour of Virginia, the US Open and the Commerce Bank Triple Crown.

Along with Borrajo, the team has reunited with 2006 team-mate and sprinter Kyle Wamsley who is coming from the Navigators Insurance squad. Wamsley ended his 2007 season winning the Chris Thater Memorial Criterium and moved on to place third in the first stage of the inaugural Tour of Missouri.

Returning to the 2008 squad are the team's all-rounder Davide Frattini and climbing talent Anthony Colby. Frattini is an Italian native and former 'Baby' Giro d'Italia winner who provides the team with ample experience and leadership qualities. After consistently placing in the top five during some of the toughest races on US soil, he will return to support both the pure sprinters and pure climbers. Durango, Colorado native Anthony Colby has shown to be one of the toughest riders to contain on a climb after taking third place up the Tour de Georgia's infamous Brasstown Bald. He went on to win the King of the Mountain jersey in the 2007 Tour de Toona.

The organization's women's team will once again be led by five-time US criterium champion Tina Pic. One of the most decorated sprinters in the history of American racing, Pic continued to win numerous events during the 2007 season. She not only dominated the US circuit but she continued her success over seas winning the Pan American road championships solidifying a spot on the US national team for the Stuttgart world championships.

Returning riders to women's team include newly crowned US pursuit national champion Dotsie Bausch and Pan American time trial champion Allison Powers. Bausch is one of the strongest all-round riders to come out of the US and brought her team home the first win of the 2007 season in stage one of the Ladies Geelong Tour, a UCI sanctioned race held in Australia. While she excels in prologue, time trials and the pursuit, she is well known for her climbing prowess and sprint finishes. As a former down hill skier, Powers displays remarkable strength in long time trials and unmatched technical skills. She won the 2007 Pan American time trial championships that guaranteed her spot along side Pic on the US world championships team in Stuttgart.

The 2008 teams will be under new directorship, to be announced with the full rosters with the teams and schedules this month.

US gets new support for juniors

A newly formed US group aimed at strengthening cycling at the junior level has received the support of former Discovery Channel rider, Tom Danielson. The newly created Junior National Cycling Association (JCNA) will complement Danielson's junior road racing series, and for 2008 will add a new mountain bike series and three training camps (road, mountain bike, cyclo-cross) all aimed at youth between the ages of 8 to 18.

"I'm really excited about the opportunity to help take junior cycling to the next level," said Danielson."The JNCA will provide the ideal platform for young cyclist to participate and develop their skills in a safe and healthy environment, and I look forward to being actively involved in the process."

The new organization will change the face of junior grassroots cycling in the United States. The JNCA will also focus on the problem of childhood obesity in this country by emphasizing the lifelong health benefits of cycling, nutrition, fitness, and community service.

Danielson has a history of supporting grassroots cycling, having helped to create the Fort Lewis College Cycling Scholarship fund to assist young collegiate cyclists. In November of 2006, Tom established the Tom Danielson Junior Cycling Cup, a race series to provide support, encouragement, and skills development to junior racers in a competitive environment.

For more information, contact the Junior National Cycling Association Marketing and Media at: media@jnca.org or visit www.tomdanielsoncycling.com 

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