Second Edition News for Ocotober 1, 1997

Death of Fritz Schaer

Former Swiss pro Fritz Schaer died on September 29 aged 71. Schaer took the silver medal behind Louison Bobet in the 1954 world championships road race at Solingen, Germany, and in 1950 was the first Swiss to wear the maglia rosa in the Giro d'Italia after winning stage 14 (he finished 11th overall). Schaer made something of a speciality of winning the first stages of big tours. He won stage 1 of the Giro d'Italia in 1952 and took the first stages of the Tour de Suisse in 1952, 1953 (2nd overall) and 1955. He wore the maillot jaune in the 1953 Tour de France again having won the first stage (Strasbourg--Metz) -- and the second (Metz--Liege), finishing 6th overall and taking the points classification. In the 1954 Tour de France he finished 3rd overall behind Bobet and compatriot Ferdi Kubler.

Schaer was born on March 13 1926 at Kaltenbach and became a pro in 1947 after having come 4th in the 1946 amateur worlds road race and won the (amateur) Championship of Zurich and the Tour des Quatre Cantons that year. He was Swiss cyclo cross champion in 1947. He won the Championship of Zurich in successive years (1949, 1950) and his opening-stage wins in the Tour de Suisse in 1952, 1953 and 1955 were complemented by other stage wins in the race in 1949 and 1956 (2nd overall).

Schaer was the less well known third of a trio of Swiss greats in this period -- Ferdi Kubler won the Tour de France in 1950 and the worlds in 1951; Hugo Koblet won the Tour de France in 1951 and the Giro d'Italia in 1950. Schaer's high placings included 2nd in the Tour of Germany 1951, 2nd in the Championship of Zurich in 1951 and 3rd in 1952, 3rd in the Giro di Lombardia 1948, 2nd in the Swiss national championship 1950 and 7th in Milano--Sanremo 1952.

French Pre-selection for Worlds

French team selector Charly Mottet has announced a pre-selection of 18 names for the World Championships elite road race on October 12. The selection will be whittled down to 12 on Friday (October 3). Mottet says that eight of these riders have already been assured of a place in the team. Laurent Jalabert and Richard Virenque are obviously two of these and one can surmise that other likely definites folowing good performances in the Vuelta a Espana are Laurent Brochard, Pascal Herve, Cedric Vasseur, Yvon Ledanois and Jacky Durand. Tour de l'Avenir winner Laurent Roux looks another likely definite.

The 18 riders are as follows:

FESTINA: Richard Virenque, Laurent Brochard, Pascal Herve, Emmanuel Magnien, 
Christophe Moreau
GAN: Cedric Vasseur, Yvon Ledanois, Francisque Teyssier
CASINO: Philippe Bordenave, Stephane Barthe, Jacky Durand
LA FRANCAISE DES JEUX: Frederic Guesdon, Xavier Jan
ONCE: Laurent Jalabert
TVM:  Laurent Roux

In addition, Laurent Jalabert and Eddy Seigneur (La Francaise des Jeux) are definite entrants for the elite time trial on October 9.

The women's road race team consists of Jeannie Longo, Cathy Marsal, Elisabeth Chevanne-Brunel, Sylvie Riedle, Severine Desbouys and Emmanuelle Farcy. Longo and Marsal will also ride the women's time trial.

France's men's espoir road race team consists of Guillaume Auger, Stephane Berges, Jimmy Casper, Loic Lamouller and Samuel Plouhinec. Auger joins Stephane Delimauges and Florend Brard in the espoirs time trial.

Francois Lemarchand Wins Valedictory Race

It was entirely fitting that retiring GAN rider Francois Lemarchand should win the final race of his career last Sunday (September 28), the criterium of Riom in France's Puy-de-Dome region. Lemarchand beat break companions David Delrieu, Thierry Bourguignon, Bourgeot and Frederic Pontier. It is not reported how seriously the sprint was contested.

Alvis Breaks National Hour Record!

Norm Alvis of the Saturn Cycling Team broke the one-hour time trial record on Friday evening riding 51.505 kilometers. Alvis broke the previous record of 50.191 km set by Colby Pearce two years ago. Alvis, 34, of Colorado Springs, CO, also broke five other national records in pursuit of the national hour record; the 10 km, 20 km, 40 km, Master's 40 km, and 50 km all fell during Alvis' ride. Alvis kept a steady pace of around 23.5 second laps until 30 minutes into the race when he surged ahead for a time and the fell back to that same pace to recover. With almost two minutes remaining in the hour attempt, Alvis had matched the distance of the past record.

"I am really delighted with all of the support I received from all the team sponsors and the national team coaches and staff," Alvis said of his record attempt. "I worked closely with a number of sponsors for a few weeks (prior to the attempt)." Alvis also praised his personal coach, Dean Golich, on helping him with both proper training and setting a lap schedule that made the record attainable.

Tech Notes:

For his (multiple) record breaking ride Alvis used a GT Superbike 1, Shimano components (54 x 13 gear), Scott Clip-on aero bars, Mavic Disc wheels (24" lenticular front, Comet rear), Continental tires, a Pearl Izumi Olympic skinsuit, Oakley M Pro glasses, GT titanium skinned aero helmet, and a 100 oz. CamelBak. Alvis froze the CamelBak reservoir and slipped it into his skinsuit, "to help reduce my body temperature and, consequently, reduce my heart rate." Prior to the ride Alvis avoided eating heavy meals but consumed 8 bottles of Champion Nutrition Metabolol II for caloric intake and proper hydration.

The national records Alvis broke this weekend follow.

Event Previous New Record 10 km 11:53.17 11:47.840 20 km 23:50.37 23:30.228 40 km 47:35.37 46:47.924 MASTERS 30+ 40 km 47:35.37 46:47.924 50 km 59:46.43 58:19.060 1 Hour 50.191 51.505 km

Italian Selections

Riders Gianni Bugno & Claudio Chiappucci figure among the 12 selected by Alfredo Martini, to represent Italy in the next Road World Championships which will held on October 12 at San Sebastián, Spain. These are the 12 riders selected: Alessandro Baronti, Michele Bartoli, Gianluca Bortolami, Gianni Bugno, Francesco Casagrande, Claudio Chiappucci, Gianni Faressin, Maurizio Fondriest, Fabrizio Guidi, Davide Rebellin, Luca Scinto & Andrea Tafi. The reserve riders will be: Andrea Ferrigato, and Roberto Caruso.