First Edition Cycling News, October 10, 2008
Edited by Sue George
Eisel takes second season win
Bernhard Eisel of Team Columbia took his second season win Thursday at Paris-Bourges. The Austrian out-sprinted the four Frenchmen with whom he was in an early break group.
The escape got away only 15 kilometres into the 194-kilometre race. The five riders built up a lead of 13 minutes and held on to a ten-minute lead at the end.
Officials named Eisel the winner over Pineau in a photo finish.
The 27 year-old Eisel said, "Paris-Bourges is a real classic and today's win was important to me. In the last six months. I have been a 'jack-of-all-trades', preparing sprints for my colleagues, and of course I am very satisfied that I could end the season with a victory." His previous win this season was the final stage of the Volta ao Algarve in February.
Eisel will end his season on Sunday with Paris-Tours. "Paris-Tours will be almost my 100th race this year. A long season will then end."
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of Paris-Bourges.
Khalilov continues hot streak with Sabatini
By Gregor Brown
Ukraine's Mikhaylo Khalilov, 33, showed his form is red-hot with victory in the 56th Coppa Sabatini. It was his third victory in recent weeks, adding to GP Prato and Memorial Cimurri. Italians Filippo Pozzato of Team Liquigas and Stefano Garzelli of Team Acqua Sapone-Caffè Mokambo finished second and third, respectively.
Organisers held the race on a circuit around Peccioli in Toscana, Italy. The final three 12.2-kilometre loops completed a course totalling 199 kilometres.
Khalilov of Team Ceramica Flaminia escaped on the final uphill run to Peccioli. He followed an attack by Acqua Sapone's Francesco Failli on a small group led by Liquigas for Pozzato. Pozzato rapidly closed on Khalilov in the final 200 metres from the final corner, but fell slightly short of victory.
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of the Coppa Sabatini.
German prosecutors open Schumacher investigation
German authorities have opened an investigation of Stefan Schumacher and have already searched his house. Meanwhile, the cyclist has announced his intention of offering a written statement in the next few days.
An unnamed representative of the Stuttgart prosecutor's office said that Schumacher's house had been searched and some items were removed as evidence, according to the dpa press agency. The investigation is based on charges that he deceived his former employer Team Gerolsteiner.
Schumacher's attorney has criticised the doping investigators and expressed doubts about the tests. "It is still totally unclear to us from the material that we now have, under what conditions and which blood samples have allegedly tested positive for CERA three months later in the laboratory in Chataney-Malabry," he said. There are, he added, "justifiable grounds for doubt."
Lehner added that "Contrary to media reports, Stefan Schumacher's blood values at the pre-race controls at the Tour de France on July 3 and at the control on the rest day July 15 were not only unexceptional but also totally in the normal range. The A-samples which were tested shortly after both doping controls were both negative, without signs of doping."
The attorney further said that his doubts were fuelled by the fact that Schumacher was the last to officially hear the news from the public prosecutor, during the house search, who personally gave him the letter from the AFLD (French Anti-Doping-Agency). It was already opened and didn't contain the German translation which it was supposed to have."
Lehner further said that "There will be a written explanation from Stefan Schumacher today or tomorrow," he said. Lehner added that he would not again advise a client to "tell all," as he previously did with Jörg Jaksche and Patrik Sinkewitz, neither of whom has found a new team, "Nobody says officially: 'We don't hire traitors.' But in the end that's the way it is."
Heinz Betz, Schumacher's manager, said that the cyclist is "totally destroyed and has withdrawn from everything."
Betz said the AFLD claimed to have sent Schumacher a letter during the first week of the Tour, "asking him to discuss his blood values with his team doctor. Stefan never received such a letter, and his blood values during the Tour were normal."
"I will do my part ... to clear up these confusing circumstances," Betz said. He noted that since there are many doubts about this case, "I support my client." But, he added, "If it should be proved that Stefan doped, then my work with him will end."
No retesting for Giro
Unlike the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia organizers will not re-test riders' samples from this spring's Giro d'Italia for the Continuous Erythropoiesis Receptor Activator (CERA) version of EPO.
"The Giro d'Italia has already made the necessary checks," said race director Angelo Zomegnan to the Apcom news agency on Thursday. "The labs and the UCI have told us these tests were done and nothing was found that could be taken as suspect. It's useless to ask for more [tests]."
Saunier Duval's Riccardo Riccò and his teammate Leonardo Piepoli tested positive for CERA at this summer's Tour de France. At the Giro, Riccò won two stages and finished second in the general classification. He has already been suspended by the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) for a period of two years.
Zomegnan said the tests for CERA began during the Giro due to a partnership between a CONI anti-doping lab in Rome and the French Chatenay-Malabry lab near Paris. "To me, it seems excessive to ask for more," Zomegnan said.
Earlier this week, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said its samples from the Olympic Games in Beijing will be re-tested for EPO CERA.
Piepoli's hearing postponed
The Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI) postponed its hearing with Leonardo Piepoli until October 22 at 12.30. According to the agency's website, it accepted a request for postponement from the legal team of Leonardo Piepoli. The hearing was originally scheduled for Friday, October 10.
Leonardo Piepoli tested positive for the performance enhancing substance EPO CERA (Continuous Erythropoiesis Receptor Activator).
Dockx another year with Lotto
Bart Dockx has signed up for another year with Team Silence-Lotto, the team announced Thursday evening.
The 27 year-old Belgian missed much of the season with a broken hip suffered in a crash in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne in early March. "The team management has full confidence in Bart," the team's press release said, and noted that he came back strong at the end of the season. He finished 111th overall in the Vuelta a España.
Gerolsteiner sends talented mix to Paris-Tours
Gerolsteiner is sending a mix of sprinters and break-away candidates to the 102nd Paris-Tours race in France on Sunday. The team has noticed that the 252-kilometre race has ended regularly with successful break or a bunch sprint, so it's covering its bases.
Sven Krauss and Sebastian Lang are being sent as possible escape artists while Peter Wrolich and Markus Zberg could serve as sprinters, while Heinrich Haussler has proven himself successful with both tactics.
"We have options, a place among the top ten is there," said D.S. Christian Henn of what will be Gerolsteiner's last race in France.
Gerolsteiner for Paris-Tours: Thomas Fothen, Oscar Gatto, Heinrich Haussler, Sven Krauss, Sebastian Lang, Peter Wrolich and Markus Zberg under D.S. Christian Henn.
New crit series for UK city centres
The Tour of Britain organisers SweetSpot announced on Thursday The Tour Series, a ten-round town and city-centre criterium series for 2009 throughout the United Kingdom.
Taking place throughout late May and June, rounds of The Tour Series will be held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings as a culmination of a festival of cycling-based activities and races that will create a carnival atmosphere at each of the chosen venues. A full list of venues is still to be announced as negotiations with potential hosts are in progress, but the first event will head to Woking.
Organizers plan to build on existing relationships established with venues through their organisation of The Tour of Britain and also develop new partnerships with many of Cycling England's Cycling Towns and Cities across the country. Some of the venues currently in line to host a Tour Series in addition to Woking are Darlington, Derby, Exeter, Milton Keynes, Southport, Stoke-on-Trent and York.
"We look forward to delivering an exciting series of events, and to providing a means for the inspiration of young people around the country," said SweetSpot Executive Hugh Roberts. The Tour Series will be the culmination of a variety of cycling events in each venue, and we hope the festival of cycling created around the elite races will help to attract new people to the sport, and promote cycling as a healthy, sustainable pastime and mode of transport."
The Tour Series will emphasize team performance over individual performance. British professional teams are expected to comprise a majority of the field and organizers are also exploring television coverage options. 10 teams of five riders each are proposed for racing around one to 1.5-kilometre circuits.
"In the 1980s, city centre racing was responsible for an upsurge in the British road cycling scene, and I'm confident that The Tour Series can have a similar effect, and will hopefully help to identify and launch the next generations of British riders," said Technical Director Mick Bennett.
The series has the support of Cycling England and its two main programs Bikeability and Cycling Towns.
Merger possible for Tecos & Extremadura
By Antonio J. Salmerón
The professional continental team Tecos de la Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara of Mexico may be merging with the Spanish professional continental Extremadura – Ciclismo Solidario team for 2009 according to Extremadura Cycling, a website with ties to the Spanish squad.
The deal could benefit both outfits as the Mexican squad, which is busy these days contesting the Vuelta a Chihuahua, might better serve its interests by taking part in the European calendar while the Extremadura-Cycling Solidario squad is looking for a sponsor to ensure its continuation.
Extremadura recently participated in the Tour of Mexico, thereby strengthening ties between the two teams. In addition, the Mexican Tecos squad had previously tried to merge, albeit unsuccessfully, with American teams. A new, combined team would likely operate under the name "Tecos-Extremadura".
"New England Worlds" ready to launch
As the leaves begin to change, it not only signals the change of seasons, but it also marks the pilgrimage to Massachusetts' Cape Ann area and scenic Gloucester for the Erdinger Grand Prix of Gloucester. 1300 riders are expected to make the trip that is the highlight of many New Englanders' cyclo-cross campaigns. Now in its 10th year of existence, this extremely popular New England landmark is continuing its growth with the addition of the North American Cyclo-Cross Trophy (NACT) series to its long-standing affiliation with the Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross Series (NECCS).
The elite men's race will pit some of the top riders in the country together on the same soil to battle for the lead in both the NACT and NECCS series. Middletown native, current NACT leader, and current national champion Tim Johnson (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) will renew his battle with 2007 national champion Ryan Trebon (Kona) over the NACT lead that heated up in Seattle three weeks ago. Both riders are on very familiar ground, and know how to win here and Trebon's four wins and Johnson's three are the most by any elite male in Gloucester history. But expect another native of these parts, Beverly native and 2007 NECCS series winner Jesse Anthony (Jamis), to make a statement as this will be his first campaign of the season after returning from a broken wrist suffered during the summer road campaign. And as the defending champion of Gloucester, he will bear the brunt to defend his title.
All this attention to the "big three" will suit current NECCS leader Jamey Driscoll (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) just fine, as he will quietly compete with the big boys and look to retain his NECCS lead over the weekend. Other riders to watch for will be mid-Atlantic pro Davide Frattini (Colavita/Sutter Home p/b Cooking Light), California veteran Andy Jacques-Maynes (Specialized/KMC p/b Cal Giant), Matt White (BikeReg.com/Joe's Garage), Dan Timmerman (Team RACE Pro), who opened some eyes two weeks ago in Vermont by almost winning Sunday's race after a long solo break, and NECCS U23 leader Will Dugan (Richard Sachs/RGM Watches/Boathouse Inc) will look to hold onto his series lead over Nick Keough (Jittery Joe's/Sonic).
On the women's side, with the co-NACT leaders not expected to compete, it will be a dash to decide who will take over the series lead after this weekend. NECCS leader and two-time under 23 national champion Amy Dombroski (Velo Bella-Kona) has a shot of grabbing two jerseys this weekend, as she is coming off two masterful wins in Vermont and a third in Seattle. But Dombroski will be facing a two-pronged attack, as western competitors Sarah Kerlin (HRS/Rock Lobster), teammate Kathy Sherwin, and Josie Jacques-Maynes (Specialized/KMC p/b Cal Giant) will be seeing a NACT lead in their sights, while New Englanders Rebecca Wellons (Ridley) and Maureen Bruno-Roy (MM Racing p/b Seven Cycles) will be hunting down the NECCS lead. Other riders with a shot at the podium will be Anna Milkowski (Velo Bela/Kona), Sally Annis (NEBC/CycleLoft/Devonshire Dental), teammate Cris Rothfuss, and Amy Wallace (Richard Sachs/RGM Watches/Boathouse Inc)
The elite masters will look to continue their fierce battle waged up in Vermont, with Corner Cycles riders Jonny Bold and Kevin Hines in the NECCS series leads in the 35+ and 45+ respectively. But while Hines is expected to continue his dominance of the 45+, Bold will have his hands full as Roger Aspholm (Westwood Velo) and Mark McCormack (Team FUJI) are breathing down his neck for the series lead. With McCormack and Aspholm finishing ahead of Bold on Sunday in Vermont, the 35+ lead will be up for grabs in a very exciting and challenging two days of racing
Current junior national champion Luke Keough (CLNoonan/Coast-to-Coast/KAM) cruised to two wins in Vermont and looks to do the same this weekend over the likes of Manny Goguen (Minuteman Road Club), Conor O'Brien (Ride with Rendell), Karl Hoppner, and teammates Colin Huston and brother Jesse Keough.
Stay tuned to Cyclingnews for complete coverage of the Grand Prix of Gloucester this weekend.
American athlete accepts suspension
Cyclist Ricardo Hernandez of Miami, Florida, accepted a two-year suspension after testing positive for a prohibited substance according to the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
Hernandez, 42, tested positive for exogenous testosterone, an anabolic agent, which is prohibited under the USADA Protocol and the rules of the UCI. His suspension took effect September 15, 2008, the date of his acceptance. Hernandez was disqualified from all competitive results achieved on and subsequent to March 2, 2008, the date his urine sample was collected at the Vuelta Independencia National, including forfeiture of any medals, points and prizes.
Road two Recovery hosts regional clinic in Virginia Beach
Hundreds of wounded warriors, along with celebrities, athletes and local riders, will participate in the inaugural Regional Training Clinic presented by the USO October 10-12 at the Little Creek Naval Base, Virginia Beach, Virginia. The three-day clinic will feature daily rides, safety and ride briefings and bicycle seminars. This event is part of the 2008 Hampton Roads Fleet Week activities, and is the first of six Road to Recovery events scheduled on military bases throughout the country.
"The USO is excited to be a part of this year's Road 2 Recovery Fleet Week ride," said Sloan Gibson, USO president. "This partnership increases our ability to lift troop spirits, deliver the comforts of home and improve the lives of our wounded troops."
"This trip is not so much about having fun as it is about transforming your new body with something you can work with the rest of your life," said Captain Ferris Butler. The Regional Training Clinic will mark Butler's return to action after his recent leg surgery.
As a part of the USO's Operation Enduring Care program, the Road 2 Recovery partnership is another way the USO is helping America's troops. This program helps meet the recovery needs of injured service members and their families, and supports medical personnel who care for the wounded, funeral escorts, mortuary personnel and honor guards serving fallen troops.
Cyclingnews online production editor required - Australia
Work on the world's leading cycling web site
Cyclingnews, the world's leading cycling web site, is expanding and is looking for a full time online production editor based in Sydney, Australia.
The position requires applicants to have a keen interest and thorough knowledge of competitive cycling, as well as editorial or writing experience with excellent English skills. The position will involve producing reports, results, photos and features from the world of cycling, so fluency in a second language is also an advantage, as is a familiarity with online production techniques, experience in journalism and attention to detail.
The applicants will need to be self-starters as the position involves regular liaison with production editors in all Cyclingnews offices. As Cyclingnews is a 24/7 daily news operation, the position will require regular weekend work. The weekend duties are handled on a rotating shift basis with other production editors, so the applicant must be flexible in their work schedule. However, the majority of work will be done during normal business hours on week-days.
The online editors will be required to have familiarity with online production applications (a good working knowledge of HTML and Photoshop are important skills) and could also be required to attend major cycling events in each region. However, the primary responsibility is the production of content for publication on the web site. Training in online production techniques can be provided to the right applicant, ability to handle the technical processes involved and an ability to communicate are required.
Please send your CV with a covering letter via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Cyclingnews online editing position - " in the subject line. Deadline for applications is October 15, 2008.
(Additional editorial assistance provided by Susan Westemeyer.)
(All rights reserved/Copyright Future Publishing (Overseas) Limited 2008)