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Dauphiné Libéré
Photo ©: Sirotti

Second Edition News for February 1, 2003

Edited by Jeff Jones

Armstrong's 2003 season plan

Lance Armstrong
Photo: © Dave Lettieri
Click for larger image

At the presentation of the US Postal team in California last week, team manager Johan Bruyneel outlined the racing program for his top rider Lance Armstrong. Bruyneel believes that Armstrong's emphasis of quality over quantity in his training and race preparation is the main reason that Armstrong has won the Tour de France four times in a row. Armstrong doesn't compete often in the early part of the season, but when he does he makes it count. Furthermore, Bruyneel thinks that too much racing could have an adverse affect on Lance's form in the Tour.

For that reason, Armstrong's 2003 calendar will not differ greatly from the past few seasons. He has split his European season in two sections of two months each. The first one will start in Spain with the Vuelta a Murcia (March 5-9) and finish at Liège-Bastogne-Liège on April 27. In between, Armstrong will compete in two other stage races - Setmana Catalana (March 24-28) and Circuit de la Sarthe (April 8-11) - before heading North to contest the Amstel Gold Race (April 20) and La Flèche Wallonne three days later. Milan-San Remo (March 22) and the Tour of Flanders (April 6) are possibilities, depending on his condition.

After using May as a training month, Lance will be back in action in June to defend his title in the Dauphiné Liberé (June 8-15). His second section of racing will end in Paris at the end of the Centenary Tour. There on the 27th of July, Lance Armstrong hopes to assume his place amongst the great riders who have won five Tours de France: Jacques Anquetil (1957-1964), Eddy Merckx (1969-1974), Bernard Hinault (1978-1985), and Miguel Indurain (1991-1995).

Each one of these riders is considered an absolute king of the Tour. A fifth win for Armstrong would also make him the fifth five-time winner for those who like symmetry. If he achieves this, then there's no doubt that he'll go for a sixth win in 2004, as he is still as hungry as ever for cycling and Tour glory.

After July, the season will effectively be finished for Armstrong, although he normally competes in the Clasica San Sebastian and Zurich World Cup races, as well as the New York City Cycling Championship race (August 3) and San Francisco Grand Prix on September 14. The World Championships in Hamilton, Canada in October, have already been ruled out.

The only reservation that Armstrong had about this year was related to the impending war between America and Iraq. "I sense that globally Americans are not enjoying the greatest reputation," said Armstrong. "I don't look forward to doing the Tour in the middle of a war. Cycling is totally open, without barriers or protection. But I'll do it, and I wouldn't let a war stop it. I'm not afraid and on the other hand, I'm not convinced that we're going to have a war."

Also see: US Postal Service presentation: Lance and co. ready for number 5

Cipollini confident for Tour start

Despite not being among the four Tour de France wild card teams named by Jean-Marie Leblanc this week, Mario Cipollini's Domina Vacanze-Elitron squad is confident that it will gain selection through its star rider.

"Leblanc has given me a white card," said Cipollini. "If I am competitive, and I will be, the Centenary Tour will happy to have the World Champion. I'm not concerned by the fact that I haven't been invited yet. I spoke with Leblanc and he only wants to have guarantees from my new team."

Cipollini was also awarded the Bici d'Oro prize, for his efforts in 2002, ahead of Paolo Bettini, Lance Armstrong, Michele Bartoli and Johan Museeuw. Journalists from 24 countries voted overwhelmingly in favour of Cipollini, who gained 242 points to Bettini's 55. The award, which is in its fifth year, was created by La Gazzetta dello Sport and the Consorzio turistico terre di Fausto Coppi.

Full report from the USPS camp to follow

Expanded blood doping tests

The UCI will step up its efforts in the fight against doping this year, with the introduction of synthetic haemoglobin testing in conjunction with the pre-race haematocrit blood test. The penalty for a positive test for synthetic haemoglobin has yet to be decided, but at the very least the rider will be prevented from racing for 15 days.

No division II for Index-Alexia

The UCI's Professional Cycling Council has decided not to accept the candidature of Italian team Index-Alexia for a place in Division II. The UCI decided that the documentation presented by the team did not meet all its requirements. This decision could be the end of the road for Index-Alexia, the team that won the 2002 Giro d'Italia via Paolo Savoldelli, who is now with Telekom.

At the same time, the Professional Cycling Council confirmed the registration of Big Mat, MBK-Oktos-Saint-Quentin, Antarte-Rota dos Móveis-BPN and Scanavino. The UCI is still examining the documentation sent by Amore & Vita.

Courtesy of João Cravo

More teams for Trust House Cycle Classic

Current World Aquathon Champion Kris Gemmel has entered next week's Trust House Cycle Classic (International Tour of Wellington). Gemmel has been a professional triathlete for over three years, and last year gained selection in the New Zealand Commonwealth Games Team, finishing off the year with the World Aquathon Championship title in Mexico.

"Kris entered last night at the last minute, but you don't turn a current World Champion away, especially when he is a very gifted rider," said race Director Jorge Sandoval

Matthew Yates Subway team

A team sponsored by Subway will also race in the Classic. Led by Belgian based pro Matthew Yates, the Subway team will feature Stephen Elden, Alistair Duncan, Graeme Stone and Jason Allen.

"Having Matthew in the tour again is great for the event and cycling in this country, he is a very well known cyclist and I know he wants to win the tour, maybe this time is his year," said Sandoval.

"Don't be surprised if the Subway team provide the mystery element this year, Matthew Yates has wanted to win a big tour here for a long time, and with experience behind them they are certain to be dangerous opposition," added Sandoval.

Team Mack Racing 2003

Team Mack Racing, in its twelfth year, is a regional team based out of Springfield, Illinois in the Midwestern United States. With over 80 members, the team will focus on all major Midwest events, a few NRC events on the East and West coasts, the Elite, Masters men/women & Junior Nationals, as well as a few events in Europe.

The principle sponsor Mack Paper Company is located in Rockford, Illinois, with warehouses in Asheville, North Carolina, and Juarez, Mexico. Additional supporting sponsors include: Waterford (bikes), Squadra Apparel, Bell, American Classic, Profile Design, Vittoria tires, Shimano, Zipp, Steve & Gina Driscoll, Edward Jones, Midwest Orthopedic Specialists, Alderman Irv Smith, MET-RX Engineered Nutrition and BikeTek, Inc.

Team Mack Racing Lineup for 2003

Elite Men
Martin Adamczyk, IN
Andrew Broas, WI
Trevor Lister, IL
Mathew Miller, IL
Ryan Nenninger, IL
Tim Shotts, IL
Michael Zellmann, IL

Juniors
Mike Gauger, WI
James Goeman, WI
Alex Holmes, IL
Marcie Mingesz, WI
Mat Seimens, IL

Women
Amy Dykema, IL
Yvette Martel, WI
Marilyn Powell, IL

Category III Men
Aaron Bobinsky, MI
Dan Eichinger, IL

Category IV Men
Curtis Bice, IL
Jeffrey Boele, IL
Ryan Fandre, WI
Michael Necessary, IL
David Padavic, IL

Masters 30+
Giorgio DiPaolo, IL
Steve Driscoll, IL
Steven Eppel, IA
George Ganas, IL
Andrew Hines, IL
Todd Kinart, WI
Robert Kron, IL
Todd Lafountain, IL
Jaime Lopez, IL
Michael Macedon, IL
Chad Martel, IL
Chris Martel, CO
Scott Ouimette, IL
Dan Poppert, IL
Anthony Sabia, IL
Eric Sanders, IL
Paul Schilling, WI
Steve Schilling, IL
Aaron Shepley, IL
Darren Sherkat, IL
Michael Stevens, IL
Jeffrey Tipps, IL
Brad Verstegen, WI

Masters 40+
Darrell Bratton, IL
Glen Butzlaff, WI
Don Daniels, IL
Gary Doering, IL
Dan Dungan, IL
Chris Eckels, IL
Derek Ewing, IL
John Fleckenstein, WI
Kevin Horvath, WI
John Jacobsen, IL
Joel Johnson, IL
Hugh Kelly, WI
Larry Kelly, WI
Mark McGeen, WI
Larry Moore, WI
Steve Moore, IL
Dean Ott, IL
Paul Ring, IL
James Rundblom, IL
Mark Sarder, WI
Steve Schien, IL
Jay Trimble, IL
Brian Van, IL
Jeff Williams, IL

Masters 50/60+
Richard Adamczyk, IN
Robert Burns, FL
Jerry Emmert, IL
Dennis Jurs, IL
Dan Leikvold, IL
Tom Lister, IL
Tim McParlan, IL
Chuck Naughton, IL
Len Olson, WI
Jerry Rankin, IL
Brad Reid, IL
Karl Schilling, WI
Mike Vonnahmen, IL
Stan Watkins, IL

Management
Operations: Sharmin Doering
Director: Gary Doering
Coach: Darrell Bratton
Legal:P James Rundblom

Web: www.teammackracing.org

(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2003)