First Edition Cycling News, January 14, 2008
Edited by Steve Medcroft
Boom and Kupfernagel strongest in Liévin 'cross World Cup
By Steve Medcroft & Brecht Decaluwé
Dutch national cyclo-cross champion Lars Boom (Rabobank) and German national champion Hanka Kupfernagel (Focus) held off strong contingents of French hopefuls looking for a home-country win in round seven of the 2007/2008 UCI World Cup on Sunday.
In the men's race, Boom held French national champion Francis Mourey (Française des Jeux) and a surprisingly strong John Gadret (AG2r - La Mondiale) to third and fifth-place respectively with the pace he and Belgian Bart Wellens (Fidea Cycling Team) set on the gloomy and muddy parcours for his second World Cup win of the season.
"I feel good," Boom said, "but the others on the podium are good as well. Mourey was very strong; for sure he will be a candidate for the win in Treviso."
Kupfernagel was able to stay ahead of three French women for her first World Cup victory of the season. World champion Maryline Salvetat (VSLL Castres), Laurence Leboucher (Sarthe-Gasseau) and Christelle Ferrier-Bruneau (Les Pruneaux D'Agen) finished second through fourth.
"I didn't feel so good because of all the traveling we did in the car," Kupfernagel said of her start in the race. "The French girls received a lot of support, so I hope the crowds will not hate me for that," Kupfernagel wondered. "Too bad Daphny Van Den Brand wasn't here today, because it would've been an even greater spectacle for the crowds. I really feel the level of women's cyclo-cross is picking up recently."
Victorian slips away for Aussie Nationals win
After attacking the field with three laps to go in Sunday's Australian Open Road Championships, Matt Lloyd (Silence-Lotto) slipped into the remnants of an early break then got away by himself for a well deserved victory; 49 seconds ahead of Thursday's time trial winner Adam Hansen (High Road) and Rory Sutherland (Healthnet Maxxis).
Lloyd noted that the race favourites were watching each other and not him. "When I actually made the move, there would be some hesitation [to follow me]. With that in mind I was fortunate enough to get away; and I knew that I could maintain the same speed, because I have done this course that many times."
Coming into the event, Lloyd was not one of the many riders that were spoken about as possible winners of the race, but that played directly into the youngster's hands. "It's one of those races that if you enter it you want to win it," he said. "I have been trying to be a bit more relaxed than in the lead up to the season as opposed to in the past, because in the past I have been trying to be a professional, whereas now that I am, it's more a matter of targeting races or bigger races overseas."
A relaxed Lloyd spoke about his win as though it was just another day on the bike, but admitted, "it's remarkable, I am sure that in the next few days it will sink in."
See full coverage of the Australian Open Road Championships.
Trebon struggles with back injury
By Steve Medcroft
After pulling out midway through the Grand Prix Lille Métropole in Roubaix, France, on Saturday, former USA MTB and cyclo-cross national champion Ryan Trebon (Kona/Yourkey.com) revealed that a lingering back injury suffered in a head-on crash with another rider during USA cyclo-cross nationals in December is thwarting his efforts in the European cyclo-cross scene. "My back is still just generally bad from crashing at Nationals," Trebon reported by e-mail on Sunday. "It's very sore and stiff to move. I feel like an 80-year old man when I wake up in the morning."
Trebon says that he has tried to work through the pain but accepts that proper recovery is the only path to his former fitness level. "For the past six weeks, I just have been pretty much stressing my back to the max trying to train and race with it. But I think the only thing that is gonna cure my back is a little bit of time off to recoup."
Trebon says the injury has sidelined his ambitions for the remainder of the 'cross season. "It is very frustrating to have physical problems keeping you from achieving what is possible. Honestly, I don't have many expectations for the rest of the year. With all the problems I have had in the past six weeks, it is very hard to honestly say I expect to compete and do well in the remaining races. You just try and look past it and focus on improving the problem."
Although he doesn't expect to recover up to and beyond 'cross Worlds, the American says that the injury is not expected to sideline him into the 2008 road and mountain-bike seasons. As he did in 2007, Trebon is "continuing to race with Kona bicycles for the MTB and 'cross seasons next year; with the occasional road race thrown in. But I'm definitely going to take a break after the 'cross season though; the most important thing is getting better so that I can properly prepare for the upcoming season."
CAS sets Landis appeal date
By Susan Westemeyer
Floyd Landis will have his next day in court on March 19 before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), his attorney Maurice Suh told the "Reuters" press agency. "We are really looking forward to appealing the (USA) decision and optimistic the CAS panel will view favourably for Floyd."
According to "Bloomberg.com", Suh said that the hearing is expected to last five days and will probably be held in New York.
When Suh announced that the suspension would be appealed, he said, "We will prove, once again, that the French laboratory's work violated numerous rules and proper procedure, rendering its results meaningless and inaccurate.
UCI bank guarantee assures Astana 2007 salaries
By Susan Westemeyer
A court in Vaud, Switzerland, has ruled that the unpaid wages for 2007 Team Astana riders must be paid out of the 500,000 euro in the bank guarantee held by the UCI. The court said that former team manager Marc Biver is required to fulfil his contracts for the past season. The decision also means that the "new" Astana team (under manager Johan Bruyneel) can now participate fully in the 2008 racing season.
A number of riders under contract last season complained that they had not received their salary since September. Biver said that he could not pay them because he had not received expected payments from his sponsors.
Kiwi team to chase Beijing Olympic qualification in LA World Cup
BikeNZ riders will continue their quest for qualification for the Beijing Olympics in the penultimate round of the UCI World Cup track meet in Los Angeles next weekend. The selectors have named a nine-strong squad to contest the third World Cup from January 18 to 20.
Dunedin's Greg Henderson will be looking for success in the men's points race where he is currently in third place on world cup points. The Team High Road rider will miss the Madison, returning to Australia to contest the Tour Down Under.
Instead partner Hayden Roulston (Ashburton) will likely team with Hayden Godfrey, Jason Allen or Shem Rodger in the Madison, where the kiwis need points as they are currently 13th on the standings.
Christchurch rider Joanne Kiesanowski has been preparing at altitude in the USA for her scratch race, currently in 12th place on the standings.
With men's pursuiter Marc Ryan and the New Zealand team highly placed in the standings, the selectors have opted to develop their depth with a new combination including Alex Cull, Rodger, Allen, Darren Shea and Hayden Godfrey.
Otago's Dale Tye will also contest the women's individual pursuit, with Alison Shanks, currently eighth in the standings, still not fully recovered from the shoulder injury she received in a crash in the Beijing World Cup.
The New Zealand team for Los Angeles is: Greg Henderson (Otago), Hayden Roulston (Canterbury), Jason Allen (Nelson Marlborough), Darren Shea (Canterbury), Shem Rodger (Waikato), Alex Cull (Auckland), Joanne Kiesanowski (Canterbury) and Dale Tye (Otago).
Meanwhile a six-rider strong New Zealand team will contest the Tour of Langkawi from February 9 to 17. The team is Joseph Chapman (Otago), Logan Hutchings (Bay of Plenty), Scott Lyttle (Wairarapa), Robin Reid (Marlborough), Ashley Whitehead (South Canterbury), Jeremy Yates (Hawkes Bay).
Free LA Track World Cup tickets available to junior cyclists
World Champion track cyclist Sarah Hammer's title sponsor, the OUCH Sports Medical Center, announced this week that it will be providing free Los Angeles World Cup tickets to all USA Cycling licensed junior cyclists for Friday's January 18th evening session.
OUCH Executive Director, Brent Kay, M.D. acknowledged, "This may very well by Sarah's final U.S. Competition before she heads to the Olympics in Beijing this summer and we want to pack the stands with Sarah's favourite supporters; junior cyclists."
OUCH will also provide free OUCH Pro Cycling T-shirts to the first 1,000 fans on Friday night as well as free tickets to both the San Diego and Encino Velodrome Cycling members.
All USA Cycling Juniors, San Diego Velodrome and Encino Velodrome members simply need to present their current membership card or identification to receive their free ticket at the gate Friday evening.
Savio confident in Hondo's return at Le Tour de Langkawi
By Jean-François Quénet
The team with seemingly the world's longest name – Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni-Androni Giocattoli (not to mention the sub-sponsors, including Selle Italia) – will open a new chapter in its 25-year history with the inclusion of German sprinter Danilo Hondo who will make his return to competition at the Vuelta San Luis in Argentina (January 22-27). This will be a warm-up for him before the first goal of his second career set to be Le Tour de Langkawi in Malaysia (February 9-17). "I want to come back as one of the best sprinters in the world", he told the German agency dpa.
Hondo was already scheduled for the Malaysian event last year under the colours of Tinkoff Credit System for which he actually never rode since his ban was extended for one more year in an endless process of court cases and arbitration. He tested positive for carphedon at the 2005 Vuelta a Murcia just before coming second to Alessandro Petacchi in Milano-Sanremo. He made a first successful but brief come back in 2006 with Continental team Lamonta for which he won eight races.
Strangely, instead of racing Le Tour de Langkawi with Tinkoff, he'll replace with a twelve-months delay five-time stage winner Alberto Loddo who transferred from Diquigiovanni to... Tinkoff. The sprinter from Sardegna was frustrated missing the Giro starting on his island when RCS denied Diquigiovanni a wild card. Next month, it should be an interesting duel between Loddo and Hondo as the 2008 Le Tour de Langkawi will feature seven flattish stages prior to the grueling climb of Genting Highlands.
"I expect Danilo [Hondo] to be in good shape because I know that he has worked hard", said the optimistic team manager of Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni-Androni Giocattoli Gianni Savio. "He went on a first training camp by himself in Cyprus, after that he went for another one in South Africa just like he did in the past. We know that he's usually a good rider for the early part of the year but in 25 years of managing a cycling team, I never announced any win before the start of a race. We always compete with a total respect for our adversaries and the race organization."
While Tinkoff has chosen to not pursue its experience with controversial riders like Tyler Hamilton and Jörg Jaksche, Savio has no problem giving another chance to Hondo who has been given the green light by the UCI for resuming racing since December 25, 2007. "I believe in his good faith", the Italian team manager said. "He has provided all the documents showing that he didn't dope, so I consider it would be unfair to leave him aside while others who have obviously doped are still allowed to race." Savio refused to make names but he clearly referred to riders involved in the blood transfusion scandal of Operation Puerto, something that Hondo has never been linked with.
The Serramenti PVC Diquigiovanni-Androni Giocattoli roster for the 2008 Le Tour de Langkawi will also include the winner of the Genting Highlands stage in 2006 and 2007 José Serpa from Colombia, Jackson Rodriguez and Carlos Ochoa (both from Venezuela), Italy's Francesco Ginanni and Ruslan Ivanov from Moldavia.
(All rights reserved/Copyright Future Publishing Limited 2007)