Tour of Britain Cycling News for September 6, 2005
Edited by Shane Stokes & Les Clarke
Paolini looking for worlds ride
Paolini won the final Tour of Britain
Photo ©: John Pierce
Italian Luca Paolini has said that he's hoping to be selected for the
Italian team for the world championships following some good performances
recently. The Quick Step rider won the green points jersey in the Tour
of Britain, taking two stages in the process - the final
stage criterium and stage
3. In addition to his performances in the UK, he also won a stage
of the Tour de la Région Wallonne and took second in the Hew - Cyclassics
Cup in July.
"I hope that this will help me get picked for the Italian team for the
world championships," the 28 year old said after his Tour of Britain stage
win in London yesterday. "I had three months off at the start of the year
with a knee problem, but I did well with two wins here. It is good for
me and it's a clear sign to the coach Franco Ballerini that I am going
well. I just hope that he selects me for the worlds, where I was third
"If not, there are a lot of races in the season where I can do well,
like Paris-Brussels, the Tour of Poland and the Zurich race."
Nuyens' late season form
Tour of Britain win for Nuyens
Photo ©: John Pierce
Belgian rider Nick Nuyens finished third overall in the Tour of Britain
last year, then went on to win Paris-Brussels. This time round, he took
the outright victory in the British race as well as two stage wins. Another
strong autumn seems to be in store. When asked by the media at yesterday's
post-race press conference if he deliberately targets the end of season,
Nuyens said that he traditionally comes good at this time of year.
"Every year is like that. I haven't done the Tour de France in the last
three years and so I am starting to train again then. I always get sick
in the middle of August, most of the time it is my stomach. When I am
getting better I know that my legs are coming.
"But before I was a professional, I did some studies in the University.
It was always June for the studies, then in July try to get into better
condition. In August my condition would arrive, and it is still like that.
But I don't really know why."
Paolini and Nuyens (Quick Step)
Photo ©: John Pierce
Nuyens said that he is becoming increasingly confident. "It started last
year, here. I think last year it was because I was in third place overall
and then I started to believe that I was a really good rider. Then I started
to win, taking Paris-Brussels. When I came back here this time round I
knew it was a good race for me, so I wanted to win. My main goal was to
take a stage win. But after the first stage I reconsidered my ambition,
thinking maybe it was possible for the general classification. So now
for the future, it gives me a lot of hope to win a bit more."
Another question put to Nuyens was if he and the team had been concerned
about a possible security threat in London. "Before we came we talked
about it, but once you are here you don't think about it anymore," he
replied. "If you started to think like that, you have to stay at home.
If it can happen in London, it can happen in Brussels, it can happen in
Paris. You have to get on with things."
Event Director happy with Tour of Britain
Former world pursuit champion and current Tour of Britain Event Director
Tony Doyle has pronounced himself happy with the 2005 edition of the contest.
Huge crowds and warm sunshine in London yesterday topped off a good week
"Overall, we have been delighted about the event," Doyle told Cyclingnews.
"We have had a fantastic team working on the race. The great thing is
that they have a lot of passion, they are all enthusiastic and they all
worked terribly hard. Organising anything is never easy, and running a
Tour of Britain over six days is a lot of work and long hours for everybody.
But it is the goodwill and passion that makes the difference, from people
who really wanted the event to happen. It is the willingness to help and
support which makes the difference, together with the belief in the event.
"That sort of energy transfers to the general public. We were very impressed
by the size of the crowds that we passed in the course of the race. So
that gives us a lot of heart. There has been a lot of hard work behind
this but the quality of the racing and the level of interest means it
has been a genuine pleasure to be involved."
The Tour of Britain is the current incarnation of the race formerly run
as the PruTour. Doyle is ambitious about the plans for it. "It is only
the second year that we have been working on the event, but we have been
very pleased with how it has all come together. We have also been pleased
to see how the media has grown since last year. We know that there's a
lot more interest there; the media that has been involved have enjoyed
it and we have enjoyed working with them.
"We realise that there's a lot more that we can do. We are going to extend
the event to seven, or even eight days next year. That will mean we'll
be able to take the race to a lot more places that we weren't able to
get to. And it will help the event to grow even more.
In addition to lengthening the race, Doyle says that he is interested
in exploring the possibility of becoming part of the ProTour. "Perhaps
in time we would like to see what could happen with the ProTour, but it's
early days yet as regards that. The good thing from our point of view
is that we know that this race is by far the biggest event to happen within
the UK. British cycling has worked very closely with us and we know that
they believe in the event. They want the events to grow and so together,
we can really make things happen.
"The great thing is there is so much happening in the world of cycling
in the UK. We have had great successes at the world championships and
the Olympics, and of course cycling has been very much to the fore in
Great Britain's medal table. With the Olympic Games coming here in only
seven years time, it is starting to become more and more front page rather
than back page news."
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2005)