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Mt Hood Classic
Photo ©: Swift

Latest News for August 13, 2003

Edited by Jeff Jones

Vinokourov looks to Zurich

Alexandre Vinokourov
Photo: © Jeff Tse

Alexandre Vinokourov (Telekom) has had a remarkable season already. The winner of Paris-Nice, Tour de Suisse, Amstel Gold Race and third overall in the Tour de France is currently ranked sixth in the UCI rankings and has scored the second greatest number of UCI points this season behind Gilberto Simoni. Vino has a chance to improve that in this Sunday's Championship of Zurich, where he will start as one of the favourites in the hilly World Cup race.

"I always give my maximum and these are the consequent results. But I would not have expected this great season after having so much bad luck last year," said Vinokourov to Telekom's website, after winning three post-Tour criteriums in Holland and France. "I hope that I can hold my good form through till the World Cup on Sunday, but my batteries are slowly getting a bit empty."

Cipollini to defend World Championship title?

I love youse all
Photo: © Christine Grein

Despite having little chance of winning on the hilly Hamilton World Championships parcours, reigning World Champion Mario Cipollini may well go to Canada to defend his title. "I'll only go out of respect, as the outgoing champion," he was quoted by VRT Teletekst as saying. "Also out of gratitude for the team that unified itself behind me in Zolder. Perhaps I can be useful for the first 100 kilometres."


Dekker comes back in time for Ronde van Nederland

Erik Dekker (Rabobank), who has spent most of the season on the sidelines due to an injured knee, will make his next return to racing on August 17 in the Dwars door Gendringen, just a couple of days before the Ronde van Nederland, in which he will also ride. He will then aim to ride out the rest of the season, although his program has yet to be finalised.

"It's good that the first races are mainly flat," said Dekker to ANP. "In the Ronde van Nederland I'll start not to win, but to get some kilometres in and stand by my teammates. The most important thing is that everything stays in place. Whether results come this year is of secondary interest."

Political support for suspended German trackies

The German Cycling Federation's (BDR) decision to suspend the four members of its pursuit team after the infighting at the World's has even attracted concern from German politicians, who want to see the quartet in action at the Athens Olympics in 2004. The Minister of Defence, Peter Struck, and Saxony's Minister of Science and Art, Matthias Rößler, have raised their voices in support of the pure track riders Christian Bach, Sebastian Siedler and Jens Lehmann (the fourth, Daniel Becke, has a road contract with the Bianchi team).

Defence Minister Mr Struck announced that the Ministry would be reassessing Bach and Siedler's status as "sporting soldiers", stressing that the German Federation will not decide their status, rather it should be a matter for the Ministry of Defence.

Saxony's Minister for Science and Art Mr Rößler wrote to BDR president Sylvia Schenk, asking her to reconsider the decision to suspend Lehmann until August 2005. "Give Jens Lehmann a chance to return to the national team and to start in the next Olympic Games. Please consider Lehmann's successes that did German cycling and the sport in general a lot of good."

Currently, Christian Bach has been suspended until the beginning of 2004, while Siedler is out until August 31, 2004, and Lehmann and Becke are banned until August 31, 2005.

Sentjens and Mutsaars have to prove their place

Young Dutch riders Ronald Mutsaars and Roy Sentjens will ride for at least another year with Rabobank, having been given an extension of their contracts until the end of 2004 by team management. However, the second year pro's will have to prove themselves in the team next year if they are to retain their positions.

"We find that the progression that they've have made since their promotion [from the Rabobank amateur team] is too little to offer them a longer contract," team managers Jaan Raas and Piet Hubert were quoted by ANP. "It's not that we are really dissatisfied, otherwise we wouldn't have given them a new contract at all, but we still expected a little more from them. Hence a one year agreement."

Raas and Hubert pointed out that a place in the Rabobank professional team is in demand, especially with a number of good young riders coming up through the Rabobank Division III team. "With the maximum twenty five rider limit per professor team, Mutsaars and Sentjens must therefore prove their places," finished Raas and Hubert.

Omloop and Trouvé extend

Belgian Champion Geert Omloop and compatriot Kristof Trouvé have extended their contracts with the Palmans-Collstrop team for another year. Omloop recorded his biggest career success in June this year in Vilvoorde when he beat Jurgen Van Goolen to win the Belgian Road Championships.

Renshaw and Bates stagiaires with French teams

Australians Mark Renshaw and Gene Bates have landed stagiaire contracts with French teams and Credit Agricole respectively. The pair will commence their contracts on September 1 and ride to the end of the season with their teams.

Verheyen a dad

Geert Verheyen (Marlux-Wincor Nixdorf) has become a father of a baby girl, Luna. Unfortunately for Verheyen, the birth took place on Monday, and he was not able to make it back from the Vuelta a Burgos in time to witness it. looking for Flower Power Awards nominations, a U.S. based women's mountain bike racing team and club that exists to promote women in cycling, is currently accepting nominations for the 2003 Flower Power Awards, the first ever series of awards recognising outstanding female mountain bikers.

The awards will showcase talent and hard work put forth by pro and amateur women with recognition for the advancement of women's mountain biking. Eleven award categories include team and individual awards at both professional and amateur levels. Categories include: Best Overall Female Mountain Biker, Best Junior Female Mountain Biker, Most Improved Female Mountain Biker, Best Women's Team, Best Mtbchick Steward, and the Mtbchick Wonder Woman Award.

Nominations will be accepted through September 20, 2003 and may be made via email to: or to:, Flower Power Awards, 3800 Pike Rd., 12-306, Longmont, CO 80503.

Please include name and contact information of nominee including supporting evidence of merit as well as photos of the nominee. Anyone may submit a nomination. Nominees who fit the category will be announced on a monthly basis at (Mtbchick members not eligible for nomination.)

Categories for the Recipients of the 2003 Flower Power Awards will be announced in October.

Wisconsin Cyclocross Series

The Wisconsin Cycling Association has expanded its 2003 Bianchi Cyclocross Racing Series to seven races. After a successful 2002 Series that saw record attendance by racers and spectators, the WCA is excited to offer Cyclocrossers plenty more quality racing.

The WCA will be awarding Series points in the following categories: C Women and C Men (beginners), Juniors (under 18), B Men (intermediate), 30+ and 40+ Masters Men (Changed for 2003), A/B Women (elite) and A Men (elite). The C races offer anyone a chance to give Cyclocross a try. Also, for those not wishing to lash out on a new cyclo-cross bike, it is possible to race your mountain bike, just minus the "pointy" bar ends. Even an old touring bike or hybrid with knobby tires is OK.

The Series will start off on September, 28th at Lapham Peak State Park, in Delafield. Other race locations are Badger Prairie Park in Verona, Cam-Rock Park in Cambridge, UW-Whitewater campus, Milwaukee's Estabrook Park and Triangle Sports Area Park in Green Bay. The series will conclude on November 16th with the Wisconsin State Cyclocross Championships to be held at the Angell Park Speedway, in Sun Prairie.

For a complete and updated scheduled go to the WCA's website at For questions about the Series, contact Jerry Pearce at 414.961.1110 (, or John Ericsson at 608.438.6707 (

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