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Dauphiné Libéré
Photo ©: Sirotti

News for July 30, 2002

Edited by Jeff Jones

UCI rankings post-Tour

The UCI has issued new rankings following the Tour de France. As expected, after a month since the last update, there have been a few changes. Not so many at the top though, with Erik Zabel, Paolo Bettini, Lance Armstrong and Erik Dekker maintaining the top four places. Francesco Casagrande is next with 1637 points, followed by Robbie McEwen, who moved up from 10th to 6th courtesy of two stage wins and the green jersey.

Other riders who benefited from the Tour include Santiago Botero (Kelme, 15th - 8th), Levi Leipheimer (Rabobank, 21st - 10th), Dario Frigo (Tacconi, 17th - 12th), Michael Boogerd (Rabobank, 22nd - 15th), and Raimondas Rumsas (Lampre, 222nd - 46th). On the other hand, Ullrich fell from 6th to 35th spot, having not contested the Tour this year.

In the team rankings, ONCE (12th to 4th) and US Postal (13th to 5th) moved up a long way, but other than that the status quo was maintained, with Mapei-quick Step, Lotto-Adecco and Fassa Bortolo the top three division I teams. Division II and III have clear leaders as well, with EDS-fakta ahead in division II, and Mapei-Quick Step espoirs on top in division III.

UCI rankings as of July 29, 2002

Individuals

1 Erik Zabel (Ger) Team Telekom                          2,483.00 pts
2 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step                   2,042.00
3 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service                1,938.00
4 Erik Dekker (Ned) Rabobank                             1,735.60
5 Francesco Casagrande (Ita) Fassa Bortolo               1,637.00
6 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Lotto-Adecco                       1,531.75
7 Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Mapei-Quick Step              1,458.75
8 Santiago Botero Echeverry (Col) Kelme-Costa Blanca     1,315.40
9 Oscar Sevilla Ribera (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca          1,189.40
10 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Rabobank                        1,141.60

Points scored in 2002

1 Lance Armstrong (USA) US Postal Service                1,938.00 pts
2 Erik Zabel (Ger) Team Telekom                          1,391.00
3 Robbie Mcewen (Aus) Lotto-Adecco                       1,276.75
4 Mario Cipollini (Ita) Acqua & Sapone-Cantina Tollo     1,134.00
5 Dario Frigo (Ita) Tacconi Sport-Emmegi                 1,133.00
6 Alex Zülle (Swi) Team Coast                            1,005.00
7 Paolo Savoldelli (Ita) Index Alexia                      953.00
8 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Mapei-Quick Step                     905.00
9 Francesco Casagrande (Ita) Fassa Bortolo                 874.00
10 Igor Gonzalez De Galdeano Aranzabal (Spa) ONCE-Eroski   853.00

Teams

Division I

1 Mapei-Quick Step                                       6,596.75 pts
2 Lotto-Adecco                                           5,100.25
3 Fassa Bortolo                                          5,032.00
4 ONCE-Eroski                                            4,742.75
5 US Postal Service                                      4,648.50
6 Cofidis                                                4,538.00
7 Team Coast                                             4,428.00
8 iBanesto.com                                           4,381.75
9 Rabobank                                               4,262.20
10 Team Telekom                                          4,184.00

Division II

1 EDS-fakta                                              2,437.00 pts
2 Bankgiroloterij-Batavus                                1,550.00
3 Landbouwkrediet-Colnago                                1,238.00
4 CCC-Polsat                                             1,230.00
5 Palmans-Collstrop                                      1,202.00

Full rankings

Ullrich team change "pure speculation"

Wolfgang Strohband, the manager of Jan Ullrich, said that a possible change of teams for Ullrich next year is "pure speculation." After Telekom suspended Ullrich without pay following his positive drug test, there were rumours that CSC-Tiscali's Bjarne Riis was interested in him.

"Jan and I have not even spoken about a possible transfer," said Strohband on Monday. "There is no talk of a change to another team, also nothing with Bjarne Riis, despite what a lot of people think."

Riis said during the Tour that Ullrich himself would have to come to him, and would need to be free of any contractual obligations from Telekom.

Anna Millward not complacent about Commonwealth road race

A relaxed Anna Millward sat in the sunshine at Rivington after her silver medal ride in the women's time trial and as usual had time for a few words for cyclingnews.com.

"It was pretty tough course with steep climbs and with not really any flat, you had to keep putting little efforts in to get over the climbs," said Millward. "I was surprised that my second lap was quicker than my first but couldn't put any time into Clara (Hughes). It was special getting on the podium and it was an awesome set up they had through the park with the great crowds and the big screen on such a beautiful day.

"It's looking really good for the road-race next Saturday as we had Australians second, fourth and fifth in the time-trial."

Anna is not complacent however after Nicole Cooke's TT performance:

"I guess it shows that the pressure is getting to her a little bit but I think she will do better in the road race. She is always very aggressive on the hills and as we do eight laps this time, it will be really hurting the legs at the end. So she will be a major factor in the race."

Quaranta will race NYCC Championship

One of the world's quickest sprinters, Ivan Quaranta (Index-Alexia) will compete against four time Tour de France Champion Lance Armstrong and 2000 Olympic Gold Medalist Marty Nothstein in the New York City Cycling Championship Presented by BMC Software on August 4.

27 year old Quaranta, from Crema, Italy, is nicknamed "The Leopard" for his lightning fast finishes. Before sustaining an injury in early 2002, Quaranta had five professional road wins in 2001, including two stage wins in the Giro d'Italia and had 6 professional road wins in 2000. Quaranta won the 1992 Jr. World Sprint Championship title in Athens, Greece and turned pro in 1997.

The race will feature 60-70 top professional cyclists racing through Manhattan's financial district with the Start/Finish Line at Wall & Water Streets.

Armstrong will fly in the morning of the race to compete, after a busy schedule this week with two criteriums in Holland (July 31 and August 1) and a two man time trial (with Floyd Landis) in Germany on August 3. He will then return to Europe to ride in the Clasica San Sebastian on August 10 and the Meisterschaft von Zürich on August 18. Armstrong's season will finish with the San Francisco GP on September 15.

Verbrugghe back in Burgos

Rik Verbrugghe (Lotto-Adecco) will return to competition in the Vuelta a Burgos, which starts on August 12. Verbrugghe broke his collarbone during the Tour de France, but has continued to train on a home trainer while it heals.

Baguet has an offer from Quick Step

Serge Baguet (Lotto-Adecco) will make a decision about his future team following the Championship of Zurich in the middle of August. "My manager Paul De Geyter has received three good offers," said Baguet. "Quick Step-Davitamon, the Danish EDS-Fakta and Lotto-Domo. Money is not the most important thing. I would settle for a million (25,000 euros) less so long as I feel good within the team."

Lampre interested in Kurt Van de Wouwer

The Lampre-Daikin team are reportedly interested in Kurt Van de Wouwer, who was left out of Lotto-Adecco's Tour squad at the last moment, much to his disappointment. Lampre want to try and strengthen their team in time for next year's Tour, and according to Gazet Van Antwerpen they have already signed Ludo Dierckxsens for another year. Johan Verstrepen is uncertain at the moment.

Thank you Keith Esson

By Karen Forman, Cyclingnews senior correspondent in Melbourne

Melbourne-based cycling promoter, Cyclists International, hailed Shepparton journalist, Keith Esson, at the organisation's annual thank-you function in Melbourne at the weekend.

CI, which promotes a series of six major international-class track fixtures each summer - including the Melbourne Cup on Wheels, the Austral Wheel Race and the Sid Patterson Grand Prix - recognised Esson with a presentation to show appreciation of his reportage and promotion of the sport of cycling for many years.

The event was attended by more than 60 volunteer staff.

Esson recently retired from his role on the sports desk of Shepparton News, but will continue to assist CI and cycling in his retirement. Spokesman Barry Langley said CI would not be able to operate without its volunteers, both within the media and trackside on race nights.

"We have people helping as pushers, doing the timing, manning gates, working on sponsorship and so on," he said. "We couldn't do without them and this dinner is a way of thanking them."

CI will hold its annual general meeting soon, at which it will re-elect a new president following the untimely and tragic death of president Don McBain a few months ago.

Planning for the 2002-03 International Track Season - which will again be held at Melbourne's Vodafone Arena from December through April - is well underway. CI is looking for organisations, corporations and individuals to get involved by sponsoring races or individual events.

Meanwhile, the Melbourne cycling community is gearing up for the 2002 Junior World Track Championships being held at Vodafone Arena from August 23 for five days. Spectators tickets are available through Ticketek.

(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2002)