Contracts and Transfers- After nine years as a professional, Marco Lietti is retiring from cycling. The winner of the stage to Gap at the Tour '91, will work for an electronics company and will represent a German cycling firm.
- Team Brescialat Oyster of Bordonali, Zandegù and Perini, has signed an agreement with Wilier Triestina bicycles: which was the bicyle brand used by Pantani in '97 and will be used next year by Sgambelluri and company.
Fernando's Meta2Mil Analysis of Laurent Jalabert's 1997 Season
Places Stage Wins Race 1 Vuelta Mallorca Spain 1 Trofeo Pollensa-Alcudia Spain 1 1 París-Nice France 1 6 París-Nice France 1 París-Nice France 1 2 Vuelta País Vasco Spain 1 4 Vuelta País Vasco Spain 1 Flecha Wallone Belgium 1 1 Vuelta Castilla y León Spain 1 2 Vuelta Burgos Spain 1 Vuelta Burgos Spain 1 6 Vuelta España Spain 1 20 Vuelta España Spain 1 World Championship ITT Spain 1 Milán-Turín Italy 1 Giro Lombardia Italy 1 Escalada Montjuïc Spain 2 Trofeo Mallorca Spain 2 Criterium Internacional France 2 Vuelta País Vasco Spain 2 GP Primavera Spain 2 Luik-Bastenaken-Luik Belgium 2 Vuelta Castilla y León Spain 3 Tour Haut Var France 5 Copa Mundo UCI 7 Trofeo C. Ratjada Spain 7 Amstel Gold Race Netherlands 7 Vuelta España Spain 11 V. C. Valenciana Spain 11 Mundial fondo Spain 17 Milán-San Remo Italy 19 Clásica San Sebastián Spain 43 Tour France France
Bugno and Tafi take up Cyclo CrossGianni Bugno, Andrea Tafi and ex-World Champion Johan Museeuw will take part in the Gran Premio Mapei International Cyclo-Cross Race which will be held on Sunday. Together with 200 registered participants, other Mapei riders taking part will be: Franco Ballerini, Giuseppe Di Grande, Daniele Nardello, Frank Vandenbroucke and Jan Svorada.
Tchmil to collect Belgian Passport shortlyAndrei Tsjmil Tchmil may collect his Belgian Passport shortly. The Ukrainian rider applied for his Belgian nationality some time ago and on Thursday his naturalisation was approved.
The 34 year old Lotto rider listed the Italian town of Puegnano del Garda as his residence. In the season just ended Tchmil was 6th in the World Cup. He won the the autumn classic, Paris-Tours. He is the foremost rival to Johan Museeuw in the single day classics.
Colombo and Leoni in retreatThese are working days for the Ballan and Kross-Selle Italia teams. Twelve Ballan athletes, the new team of Flavio Miozzo and Dario Mariuzzo, are in retreat at Abano Terme to setup the base of the coming season. Together with Gabriele Colombo are Leoni, Gontchenkov, Cattai, Canzonieri, Finco, Loda, Tosatto, Tronca and Neo-Pros Alberto & Rodolfo Ongarato and Filippo Baldo. Absent from this retreat will be Piotr Ugrumov, who after four years has returned to Lithuania to look for his parents. The bicycles that the team will use are by Scapin.
Tomorrow there will be a meeting at Lonate Pozzolo (Varese) until Sunday, with the athletes of Kross-Selle Italia, the Colombian team directed by Gianni Savio. The organization includes Colombians Goyenece, Lozano, Saavedra, Hernandez, Forero, Anaya, Delgado, Brand & Zapata; Italians Pierobon, F. Frigo, Citracca, Gili, Gobbini, Mori, Baliani (neo); Ukranian Pulnikov and Australian Mc Kenzie. The bicycles will be by Daccordi. The team will also include the return to the saddle of Alvaro Mejia, the Colombian who finished fourth at the Tour '93.
Pantani in Milan to promote BianchiMarco Pantani will be part of the presentation of the new team bike for his team Mercatone Uno. The team bikes will be provided by Bianchi next year: Mercatone Uno next year will be called, Mercatone Uno-Bianchi. Bianchi has been a brand associated with the history of cycling, starting in 1946, when they were ridden by il Campionissimo Fausto Coppi. The winner of the 1965 Tour, Felice Gimondi also rode a Bianchi. In recent years Moreno Argentin and Gianni Bugno.
Lot's of Riders Quit in AutumnTraditionally Autumn is not only the end of the cycling season, but also the time to say good-bye to some riders that we won't see again in their uniforms. The Autumn of 1997 was no exception and has seen the end of the careers of: Swiss Tony Rominger (36), Dutch Erik Breukink (33), Polisho Zenon Jaskula (35), Frenchmen Ronan Pensec (34) and Gérard Rué (32), Belgians Hendrik Redant (35)and Luc Roosen (33) and German Mario Kummer (35).
Tony Rominger (Switzerland) - 3/27/61
- Professional since 1986.
- Teams: Clio-Aufina, Supermercati Brianzoli, Chateau d'Ax, Toshiba, Clas-Cajastur, Mapei-Clas, Mapei-GB, Cofidis.
Maybe he rode one season too many or maybe it was his decision to ride with French Team Cofidis. Or maybe even more, the decision to ride under Cyrille Guimard, a declining "petit Napoleon". With Tony Rominger retiring we say good-bye to a great and versatile champion in every sense. The first to have won three consecutive Vuelta a España (1992, 93 y 94), winning eleven stages at the Spanish race. Winner of a Giro d'Italia (1995) and second behind Miguel Indurain at the Tour de France in 1993. Like many cyclists that have said good-bye, Rominger was no match to Miguel Indurain. The Swiss was, just like the Navarran a great time trialist, which allowed him to pulverize in 1994 the Bordeaux velodrome the record set for the hour by his rival Indurain. Maybe that record will be the crowning moment for a career that started pretty late and ended with the palmares of a champion. Probably the 1997 season and the collarbone fracture were unnecessary extras for this great champion.
- Palmares: Has closed his career with 95 official victories. The most distinguished in chronological order are: Giro Reggio Calabria (87); stage Tour of Romandie, stage Giro d'Italia and Giro d'Emilia (88); Tour del Mediterráneo, Tirreno-Adriático and Giro di Lombardia (89); Tirreno-Adriático and stage at Dauphiné Libéré (90); París-Nice, Tour of Romandie and Final of the World Cup (91); Vuelta País Vasco, two stages and overall at la Vuelta España and Giro di Lombardia (92); Vuelta al País Vasco, three stages and overall at la Vuelta España and three stages at the Tour de France (93); París-Nice, Vuelta País Vasco, six stages and overall at la Vuelta a España, GP Eddy Merckx and GP des Nations (94); Tour of Romandie, four stages and overall at Giro d'Italia (95); Vuelta a Burgos and two stagea at la Vuelta a España. No victories in 1996. Beat twice the Hour Record set by Miguel Indurain was second at the Tour de France in 1993 and third at the Giro d'Italia of 1996.
Erik Breukink (Netherlands) - 1/4/64
- Professional since 1985.
- Teams: Skala, Panasonic, PDM, ONCE, Rabobank.
Erik Breukink was the best and most charismatic Dutch rider of the last 10 years. Just like the other great riders in his generation, he was above all a good time trialist. His abilities as a time trialist and acceptable climbing made Breukink throughout his career a candidate for the victory and podium at the major stage races. But a victory in one of the major stage races is what's lacking to be able to call him one of the greats of his generation. There were some occasions when he was close to the desired victory. For example, during the 1989 Giro, when on the climb of the Passo del Campolongo he fell apart so badly that in only four kilometers he lost all possibilities of overall victory which was won by Frenchman Laurent Fignon.
He finished the Giro 1989 in fourth position after having finished third (1987) and second (1988) in the 'Pink Race'. The 1990 Tour de France looked like the great revenge, but again his traditional bad day, this time on the climb of the Tourmalet took away any possibility of an overall win. His third place in Paris probably was the peak of his career. The year after Breukink was one of the victims, inside PDM of the famous "Intralipid-affaire", which eliminated the whole Dutch team. Since then, even with a seventh place at the 1993 Vuelta and the 1992 Tour, he never reached his previous level. At the end of 1992 when PDM dissolved, he signed for ONCE, and won the Criterium International and la Vuelta a Asturias. But since 1994 he just worked for his teammates Alex Zulle and Laurent Jalabert. In 1996 he signed with Rabobank (Jan Raas) and finished his riding days with them.
- Palmarés: 54 total victories. His first victory was a stage of the Tour of Switzerland in 1986. Then he won amongst others, a stage at the Giro d'Italia and the the Tour de France (88); Criterium International, Vuelta País Vasco and stage at the Giro d'Italia (89); two stages at the Tour de France, Tour of Ireland and the final of the World Cup (90); Tour DuPont and GP Eddy Merckx (91); stage Vuelta a España and Giro di Piamonte (92); Criterium International, Vuelta Asturias, Dutch National Road Champion and Tour of Holland (93); ITT Dutch National Champion (95); GP Overijse (96) and the ITT Dutch National Champion in 97, his last win. Breukink was third at the 1990 Tour de France, third at the 1987 Giro and second at the 1988 Giro.
Zenon Jaskula (Poland) - 4/6/62
- Professional since 1990.
- Teams: Diana-Colnago, Del Tongo, GB-MC, Jolly, Aki, Brescialat, Mapei-GB.
Zenon Jaskula had his moment of glory during the 1993 Tour de France. The Polish rider finished third in Paris, behind Indurain and Rominger. He was the first Eastern European to make the final podium at the Tour. His victory on stage 16, which finished on the Pla d'Adet, where he dropped Rominger-Indurain, is without a doubt the most important victory of his career - a career which hasn't been full of success. A career with more lows than highs. In cycling he was never capable of confirming or repeating his 1993 Tour performance. The Polish man finishes his career with Mapei-GB. Next year he starts his new career as a representative for Mapei in Poland.
- Palmarés: 9 victories. Poland Road Champion (90); two stages at the Sun Tour (92); stage at the Tour of Switzerland and stage at the Tour de France (93); Trofeo Escaladores (94); two stages and the overall at la Vuelta Portugal (97).
Ronan Pensec (France) - 10/7/63
- Professional since 1985.
- Teams: Peugeot, Z, Seur, RMO, Histor.Novémail, Amaya, Le Groupement, Gan.
The Tour de France is what has given Ronan Pensec a reputation. He finished sixth on his first appearance and became a big name in France. Two years later he confirmed this status by taking seventh place. In 1990 took part in the first stage breakaway, which was won by Frans Maassen. Ronan Pensec took in the Alps, Canadian Steve Bauer's yellow jersey, but would lose it on the Mountain time trial to Claudio Chiappucci. He finished 20th on that Tour'90, which was the last of three for Greg LeMond. Since then his career has gone downhill.
- Palmarés: 8 victories. Stage La Sar-the and Estrella Esperanzas (85); Estrella Besseges (87); GP Rennes and Tour Midi Pirinées (88); stage Vuelta Mediterráneo (90); GP Plouay (92); stage Dauphiné Libéré (94).
Gerard Rue (France) - 7/7/65
- Professional since 1987.
- Teams: Système U, Castorama, Helvetia, Castorama, Banesto, Gan.
Gérard Rué was part of the Team Système U which won the Team Time Trial at the 1989 Tour de France, but in París saw his leader lose on the last individual time trial by 8 seconds to Greg LeMond. That was tough on Rué, who on that Tour showed to be a true Super Domestique next to Fignon. That's the reason why he tried to go for the overall in 1991 and finished 10th. But his career would become defined by his role as the super domestique - working for a leader. That's why he signed with Banesto with Miguel Indurain.
- Palmarés: 13 victories. Duo Normand (87); stage Midi Libre and Tour stage Poitu Charentes (88); Tour Haut Var, stage París-Nice and stage at Dauphiné Libéré (89); Tour Mediterráneo, Midi Libre and GP Cannes (90); stage Tirreno-Adriático (91); Tour Haut Var and stage at Tour of Holland (92); stage at Vuelta Valles Mineros (93).
Hendrik Redant (Belgium) - 1/11/62
- Professional since 1987.
- Teams: Roland, Isoglass, Lotto, Collstrop, ZG Mobili, TVM.
The 1997 season was planned to be Redant's last. He was going to exchange the bicycle for the driver's wheel for Team TVM after the Spring Classics - from rider to sport director in the same year. However, a serious fall at the Three Days of La Panne, at the beginning of April led to a premature finish to his career - despite all the planning. Hendrik Redant was an authentic "Flandrien", with more character than real class. His career, right to the end, was marked by bad luck, in terms of falls and fractures.
- Palmarés: 36 victories.The most important were Kuurne-Bruselas-Kuurne, stage at Three Days of La Panne and a stage at the Tour of Belgium (88); Kuurne-Bruselas-Kuurne, stage at Circuit de la Sarthe and Tour l'Oise (90); stage at la Vuelta Aragón and Circuito Ardenas Flamencas (91); stage Vuelta Andalucía, stage Vuelta Valles Mineros, two stages at the Tour of Great Britain , GP Jef Scherens, París-Tours and Japan Cup (92); stage Tour Armorique and stage Ruta du Sud (93); stage Boland Bank Tour (95); stage Vuelta a Portugal and stage Boland Bank Tour (96).
Luc Roosen (Belgium) - 17/9/64
- Professional since 1986.
- Teams: Kwantum, Superconfex, Roland, Histor, Lotto, Vlaanderen 2002.
- Palmarés: 12 victories. Stage Dauphiné Libéré (86); stage Midi Libre (87); Tour Haut Var & stage of Tour of Switzerland (88); stage Vuelta Andalucía, stage Tour Mediterráneo and stage Schwabenbrau Cup (89); stage Dauphiné Libéré, stage Tour of Switzerland Trofeo Escaladores (90); stage Tour Mediterráneo, stage Tour Vaucluse, stage and overall at Tour of Switzerland (91) and stage at the Tour of Austria (96).
Mario Kummer (Germany) - 6/5/62
- Professional since 1990.
- Teams: Chateau d'AX, Gatorade, PDM, Telekom.
- Palmarés: Only one victory. Stage at Giro Puglia in 91.