First Edition News for October 12, 2003
Edited by Jeff Jones
Jeanson declared "unfit to ride"
by Mark Zalewski in Hamilton
When asked whether or not she has ever taking performance enhancing substances, Canadian Geneviève Jeanson simply replied, "No."
This question came in response to the Canadian cycling star's elevated haematocrit level, found this morning in a test done before the Elite Women's Road Race of the 2003 World Championships. While the exact percentage was not disclosed, women are not allowed to have a number higher than 47 percent in their blood.
Jeanson attributed her elevated level to use of a hypoxic tent. The tent is used by some athletes to simulate high altitudes in order to enhance their training. "I've been using the tent since 1998," said Jeanson. "I use it all the time."
Jeanson appeared in a press conference with other Canadian Cycling Officials immediately after the race press conference concluded. Bill Kinash, President of the CCA, opened by reading a statement that reflected the position of the association. "The CCA is very dissapointed that one of our best medal hopes, Geneviève Jeanson, was not able to start the women's road race today. We know she is very upset, as we all are. It is very important to stress that this is not a positive doping test, but rather a situation where a rider has been declared unfit to ride."
Jeanson also contributed a statement. "I'd like to be able to speak to you, but I have to admit that I am in a state of shock - I'm very very disapointed, I'm very very sad not to have been able to take part in today's race." She then answered questions from the press, along with her coaches.
Jeanson acknowledged the risk of high levels from use of the tent. "Yes it is possible, it's a very thin line - and if you are over the line by point one [percent], you are taken out of competition. I was confident coming into the competition." Coach Yury Kashirin commented on if the Association' had tested their athletes before the Championships. "It's an independent agency... it can happen any time anywhere - it's not up to us, that's how it works."
Visibly upset over the incident, Jeanson left the press conference on the verge of tears.
A urinalysis will be done to determine if any performance enhancing substances are present in Jeanson. Samples will be sent to Switzerland, and results will not be known for at least four days.
Press Conference Transcription
Present: Bill Kinash, Yury Kashirin, Yvan Waddell, Genevieve Jeanson
Genevieve Jeanson: I'd like to be able to speak to you, but I have to admit that I am in a state of shock - I'm very very disapointed, I'm very very sad not to have been able to take part in today's race.
Q: If any cyclist in the CCA was found to have a positive test, what would be the sanctions?
Bill Kinash: Again, this is not a positive result, and I would rather not speak to the details of the rules - they are rather long and complicated.
Q: When was the last time you were tested, out of competition?
GJ: It's my first test.
Q: To what do you attribute this reading?
GJ: I use a hypoxic tent.
Q: Is it possible for a tent to raise you level so high as to take you out of competition?
GJ: Yes it is possible, it's a very thin line - and if you are over the line by point one, you are taken out of competition.
Q: Didn't the federation test the cyclists before the World Championships?
Yuri : It's an independent agency... it can happen any time anywhere - it's not up to us, that's how it works.
Q: Can we have the official result?
GJ: It's confidential.
Q: Is this your first test ever, and were you concerned going into the test that there might be problems?
GJ: It's my first test in competition, it's not the first blood test I ever had. I was confident coming into the competition.
Q: Have you ever done any doping?
Q: Have the RONA representatives been in touch with you, and are they offering any support?
GJ: Yes, they are 100% behind me.
Q: How long have you been using the tent, and when was the last time you used it?
GJ: I've been using the tent since 1998, and I use it all the time.
Q: What did you say to your teammates when you found out?
GJ: I didn't have the chance to talk to them, I had to leave. To tell the truth, I was too in shock to think about anything else.
Q: Have you ever had tests done to see how much the tent raises your levels?
GJ: It is effective. For me it is really effective, but I never was worried.
Serious crash for Kevin Lacombe
By Mark Zalewski in Hamilton
Canadian rider Kevin Lacombe was transported to Hamilton General Hospital this morning following a crash during the second descent of James Mountain Road in the Junior Men's Race. The 18 year old from Amos, Quebec was admitted to hospital - which is the trauma centre for the area - with head injuries. The ambulance crew was able to stabilise him on the scene.
Among other injuries, Lacombe broke his orbital bone (above the eye) and is still in a critical but stable condition under sedation as of 5:00pm EDT. His family is with him and he is receiving the best possible treatment. "All of the x-rays came back negative, including a CT scan," Canadian Cycling's Sean O'Donnell told Cyclingnews. "The prognosis is very good that he will make a full recovery,"
Lacombe won the 2003 Canadian Junior Time Trial Championships.
Aussies come up short
The Australian team did not fare so well on Saturday in either the Elite Women's or the Junior Men's road races, with the best placings being Olivia Gollan (25th in the women) and William Walker (25th in the junior men).
Afterwards, Gollan admitted she was disappointed not to be with the front group at the finish. "I could not believe how fast the race was," she said. "There was not one solitary moment of relief the whole race. I had a good lap and a bad lap and a good lap and a bad lap. I got dropped off a little with three laps to go and managed to get back on but by the time I got back around to the start-finish with two to go unfortunately I didn't have the legs to go with them."
Gollan's disappointment was understandable in light of her recent good form and a season which has seen her on the podium in several major international races. "For the last month I've really focussed on this race and a couple of weeks ago I had a really good race and climbed with the best of them," she said. "But there's always next year and the good thing is we have a great team who all did their best today so after an end of season celebration tonight we'll start working on next year."
Teammate Oenone Wood missed the main break but refused to give in and almost bridged the gap with two laps to go. But the leaders proved too strong and the young Canberra rider had to settle for 28th place at 7'57 behind Susanne Ljungskog. "I was hoping to be with the leaders at the finish but I just couldn't get there," said Wood. "The experience of this whole year of racing in Europe and coming to my first world's has really helped me to develop and I know I can develop even more in coming years."
Zabel relaxed for the big one
Germany's top man Erik Zabel is feeling relaxed as he heads into tomorrow's elite men's race as one of the outside favourites. So far the Hamilton course has shown itself to be selective without being super tough, and a rider like Zabel is certainly a danger man if the peloton hangs together over the 21 laps.
"I am very relaxed," Zabel told SID. "It is really a race just like any other - only not if you win it. I will hide myself in the field until the finale and only pay attention that I don't get dropped."
Zabel commented that the course was very tough, comparable to Lisbon in 2001 where he finished 5th. "This time the climbs are not as steep. I've done them a few times in training in the past few days and have come up OK."
Zabel rates Paolo Bettini as one of the main favourites for the race, along with dual World Champion Oscar Freire and Romans Vainsteins. The German tactics will be "to react and not dictate the racing," according to Zabel.
If he should claim the rainbow jersey tomorrow, Zabel said that it would be the highlight of his career. "Ask Mario Cipollini which of his many victories means the most and he will say: the World Title. With me it will be no different."
Ballerini has a plan
Italian technical director Franco Ballerini has the difficult task tomorrow of directing the top team in the Elite Men's World Championship, to be run over 21 laps of the testing Hamilton course. All eyes will be on the Italians, who are the defending World Champions and hold the trump card in the form of Paolo Bettini.
"We are a good team and this is not in question," said Ballerini at a press conference yesterday. "Certainly the World's will be a tough race, one in which we should do well since we have the big favourite in Paolo Bettini.
"On Friday we studied the plan, also in light of the U23 race, and we are more convinced than ever that we should hold the race in our hands. There is a lot of talk about a plan to make it as hard as possible, I think that the 260 kilometres of a World Championship will be very hard, and secondly how it will be interpreted by the riders: we are fortunate to have a team composed of athletes of great tactical intelligence and I am secure that they will move things along well."
Igor to start, Antequera hopeful
Igor Gonzalez de Galdeano will line up as part of the Spanish team in tomorrow's road race, despite suffering from physical problems in the time trial which forced him to abandon. Igor has been training well since the incident, a muscular problem in the left hand side of his chest, and Spanish coach Paco Antequera expects him to have a good race tomorrow.
The Spanish strategy is not just pinned on Oscar Freire's sprint according to Antequera. "In principle, Igor Gonzalez will be attentive to all the breakaways, although until they've done three or four laps we won't be able to see how the race unfolds as it's a difficult circuit," said Antequera. "Astarloa and Valverde will always be lying in wait for something to happen, Oscar Sevilla will enjoy total freedom, while 'Triki' [Beltran] will remain next to Freire to protect him."
"Our rivals know that Freire is quick in the finishes and it's certain that Italy, our biggest rival, will try to eliminate him.
Cyclingnews will have full live coverage of the Elite Men's race on Sunday beginning at 9:00am EDT/6:00 PDT/15:00 CEST.
Three World's riders for Inverell
The modestly sized northwestern NSW town of Inverell (pop. 10,000) can boast three riders taking part in the 2003 World Road Cycling Championships. In addition to Cyclingnews diarist Scott Sunderland in tomorrow's Elite Men's race, junior rider Andrew Wyper also represented Australia in the Junior Men's race, while U23 rider Heinrich Haussler was part of the German national team in Friday's road race.
Where Sunderland needs no further introduction to Cyclingnews readers, Andrew Wyper and Heinrich Haussler are not as well known. Wyper, who finished 68th in the Junior Men's race, has had a remarkable year being the only rider in Australia to represent in both track and road teams. He contested the World Track Championships in Moscow and won a bronze medal as part of the Australian pursuit team. He also won silver at the State Championships and gold at the Youth Olympics. After the World's, Wyper will have a three week break followed by preparation for the Australian Road Championships in Ballarat during January.
Heinrich Haussler has completed a good season of racing in Europe but said it was an immense struggle to make the cut for world's due to the big field of quality riders in the German national team. "I had to wait until the last pro tour where we competed as the German national U-23 squad with eight riders of which five would be selected to ride in Canada," Haussler told the Inverell Times.
Haussler added that his German team is in terrific spirits after team mate Fothen won the time trial on Wednesday morning and then Bianca Knöpfle won the junior women's time trial. "It's a major lift for our team," Haussler said, adding that he is surely hoping to catch up with the other Inverell competitors Scott and Andrew.
Courtesy Inverell Times
The Gerolsteiner team has obtained the signatures of Sven Montgomery (Fassa Bortolo) and Marco Serpellini (Lampre). German World U23 TT Champion Marcus Fothen also has a contract with Gerolsteiner. The addition of these riders will round out the team to 24 next year.
Wim Vansevenant has extended his contract with the Lotto-Domo team for another season, and this team will also have 24 riders next year.
Jacky Durand (FDJeux.com) has an offer from Landbouwkrediet-Colnago for next season. The Frenchman whose trademark is long and occasionally successful breakaways, is considered a "greater than 50 percent chance" of joining the Belgian team. "I still have four places free and in the Italian camp another two riders can also come," said manager Gerard Bulens to Het Nieuwsblad. "I'll wait until after Putte Kapellen next Tuesday to see who deserves a contract extension."
U23 World Champion Sergey Lagutin will definitely join Landbouwkrediet-Colnago next year, as well as Lagutin's Palazzago teammate Giairo Ermeti and Mercatone Uno's Cristian Gasperoni.
Russian rider Vladimir Gusev has signed a contract with the Danish CSC team for two years, according to feltet.dk. Gusev finished 23rd in the U23 men's road race on Friday and 12th in the time trial on Tuesday.
Cannondale Stumptown Cyclocross Classic
The Cannondale Stumptown Cyclocross Classic kicks off this Sunday, October 12 at Jackson Middle School in Southwest Portland. The organisers are expecting one of the deepest elite fields assembled this year, featuring a highly anticipated match up between Belgian former World Cyclocross Champion Erwin Vervecken (SpaarSelect) and America's top cyclocross talent. Vervecken will be likely be aided by compatriot Sten Raeymaker as they do battle with two former U.S. National Champions in Marc Gullickson (Redline) and Mongoose's Todd Wells.
Also in the hunt will be up and coming stars Barry Wicks (Kona-Kenwood), Ryan Trebon (Eastern/Kona/CCA) and Adam Craig (Giant), the rest of the powerful Kona-Kenwood squad including Dale Knapp, and local stalwart Eric Tonkin, Seattle's Jonny Sundt (K2 Bikes), Ben Jacques-Maynes and Justin Robinson (Bouillion Stil/Spokesman), the "Red Train" Clif Bar team of Jackson Stewart, and Andy Jacques-Maynes, as well as two other local favourites, Shannon Skerritt (Trek/VW/Bike Gallery) and Mark King (Sunnyside Sports), who have been impressive thus far in early season UCI races.
On the women's side, it will likely be a battle of the two strongest teams: Clif Bar and Kona/ Kenwood. Anne Knapp (formerly Grande) is the reigning U.S. National Champion and will roll to the line as the one to beat. Clif Bar features the one-two punch of Gina Hall and Carmen D'Alusio. Another highlight of this top quality women's field is multi-time National and World Champion in off-road disciplines, Alison Dunlap. Other women expected to challenge for the podium are: World's team member Rachel Lloyd (Team Spine), Seattle area product and rising star, Josie Beggs (Redline), Christine Vardaros (Sallyspicer.com), and Portland's own Rhonda Mazza (Team S&M/ Vanilla) and Stacey Peters (T-Mobile).
The Cannondale Stumptown Classic starts at 9:30 a.m. with the Elite Women starting at 1:00 p.m. and the Elite Men's event at 3:00 p.m. Visit www.crosscrusade.com for a full schedule and directions to the course and registration information.
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2003)