Latest News for July 29, 2003
Edited by Jeff Jones & Chris Henry
Latest UCI women's rankings
Over a month has passed since the UCI updated its women's rankings, and there have been a few changes, with the running of the women's Giro and Thüringen Rundfahrt in July. The biggest change is reflected in the teams rankings, after world number one Susanne Ljungskog changed teams bike Catalunya-Aliverti-Kookai to Bik-Powerplate. Her UCI points, combined with the likes of Sara Carrigan and Anita Valen, have put Bik-Powerplate on top of the teams rankings, ahead of Prato Marathon Bike and USC Chirio.
In the individual rankings, Ljungskog still has a 180 point buffer to Mirjam Melchers (Farm Frites-Hartol) in second place, with Nicole Brändli (Prato Marathon Bike) still in third. Edita Pucinskaite moved into the top 10 again (up from 15th), while Zoulfia Zabirova dropped a few places from 5th to 8th. In the nations rankings, Germany is still the top ranked nation but Australia jumped ahead of the Netherlands and Russia into second place.
UCI rankings as of July 27, 2003
Individuals 1 Susanne Ljungskog (Swe) Bik-Powerplate 756.50 pts 2 Mirjam Melchers (Ned) Farm Frites-Hartol Cycling Team 573.50 3 Nicole Brändli (Swi) Prato Marathon Bike 560.50 4 Judith Arndt (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 487.50 5 Sara Carrigan (Aus) Bik-Powerplate 450.30 6 Regina Schleicher (Ger) USC Chirio Forno d'Asolo 404.00 7 Joane Somarriba Arrola (Spa) 361.50 8 Zoulfia Zabirova (Rus) Prato Marathon Bike 354.10 9 Zinaida Stahurskaya (Blr) USC Chirio Forno d'Asolo 336.00 10 Edita Pucinskaite (Ltu) S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox 327.00 11 Nicole Cooke (GBr) Ausra Gruodis-Safi 295.50 12 Olga Slyusareva (Rus) 282.40 13 Anita Valen (Nor) Bik-Powerplate 252.50 14 Olivia Gollan (Aus) 239.50 15 Petra Rossner (Ger) Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 236.00 16 Lyne Bessette (Can) Saturn Cycling Team 224.00 17 Debby Mansveld (Ned) Vlaanderen-T-Interim Ladies Team 197.00 18 Alison Wright (Aus) Road Runner-Guerciotti Cycling Team 190.00 19 Valentina Polkhanova (Rus) 186.40 20 Amber Neben (USA) Team T-Mobile USA 176.00 Teams 1 Bik-Powerplate 1,531.10 pts 2 Prato Marathon Bike 1,145.30 3 USC Chirio Forno d'Asolo 855.00 4 Equipe Nürnberger Versicherung 819.00 5 Farm Frites-Hartol Cycling Team 796.50 6 Team 2002 Aurora RSM 503.50 7 Saturn Cycling Team 495.00 8 Ausra Gruodis-Safi 478.50 9 Team T-Mobile USA 463.00 10 S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox 410.00 Nations 1 Germany 1,246.00 pts 2 Australia 1,169.80 3 Netherlands 1,084.80 4 Russia 1,037.50 5 Sweden 819.00 Full rankings: Individuals, Teams, Nations
No Vuelta for Mayo
Euskaltel-Euskadi's Iban Mayo will not ride the Vuelta a España, announced directeur sportif Julian Gorospe. Mayo finished the Tour de France in 6th place overall, behind teammate Haimar Zubeldia, who for his part remains undecided about the Vuelta.
"I have to speak with the riders to plan out the next races," Gorospe explained. "Iban won't be [at the Vuelta], that's certain, and I have to discuss it with Haimar."
Gorospe added that only riders who are "fresh and ready to fight at home" will be selected for the Spanish national Tour.
Bernaudeau satisfied, almost
Jean-René Bernaudeau, directeur sportif of Brioches La Boulangère, has declared himself satisfied with his team's Tour performance, while at the same time regretting the lack of a big result. Bernaudeau placed some emphasis on the selection of young riders for the team, such as Anthony Geslin, Maryan Hary, and Thomas Voeckler. Sylvain Chavanel was also expected to ride a good Tour, and showed himself during a long breakaway on the roads to Luz-Ardiden.
"I would have liked some more results," Bernaudeau admitted. "We lacked a bit of luck with Geslin at Lyon, Beneteau at Loudenvielle, and Chavanel at Luz-Ardiden. They came close to victory, and with a lot of panache."
Even without a stage win or special jersey on its back, Brioches La Boulangère finished 8th in the teams classification, the best placed French team in the Tour. "Overall, our performance was honourable," Bernaudeau added."
CBS ratings similar to 2002
U.S. TV network CBS's coverage of the 2003 Tour de France was as popular as it was last year, according to viewer figures. The network was responsible for covering the Tour on Sundays, while OLN TV covered the remainder. For the final stage, which was shown tape delayed, CBS scored an overnight rating of 2.4 (approximately 1.75 million homes) with a market share of 6 percent. Last year, the same stage scored an overnight rating of 2.5. CBS's complete Tour coverage (four Sundays worth) scored an average rating of 2.0 with a 5 percent share, compared to last year's 1.9 with a similar share.
Tour does well in Germany
Jan Ullrich's successful comeback to the top level of cycling has given the interest in the sport a boost in Germany. The Tour de France was broadcast by ARD and ZDF, which reported impressive viewer figures for some of the key stages. Last Saturday's time trial was watched by a record 9.11 million viewers, a market share of 58.1 percent - even greater than when Ullrich won the Tour for the first time in 1997. Similarly, 7.51 million viewers watched the final stage on Sunday, while last Monday's Luz Ardiden stage was viewed by 6.3 million people.
ARD/ZDF have an existing contract with organisers A.S.O. and France Télévisions to broadcast the Tour next year, and hope to keep the rights in future. "The Tour will stay with ARD and ZDF," chief editor Nikolaus Brender said to DPA. "For that we will make every effort in programming and financial support."
RTL is also said to be interested in acquiring the rights to broadcast the Tour.
Vinokourov to race in Chaam
Alexandre Vinokourov will race in the Acht van Chaam on Wednesday, July 30 in the Netherlands. The Kazakh who finished third in the Tour de France was contracted by the organisers on Monday. Mario Cipollini, Alessandro Petacchi and Servais Knaven will also race in Chaam.
On the other hand, Michael Boogerd is taking a short rest after the Tour, as he has a light knee injury. Boogerd wants to be fully fit for the World Cups, and decided to miss the Boxmeer and Chaam criteriums. He will however be present in Wateringen on Thursday.
Second Annual Criterium Queensland Carnival
After the success of the inaugural Criterium Queensland Carnival in February 2002, preparation for the second edition in November this year is well under way. The series will again be made up of three 60 minute criteriums in the three original host towns of Nanango, Mundubbera and Childers. Riders will race on the three downtown circuits from November 14-16.
There is a total of $11,500 prize money up for grabs in the men's and women's categories. Organisers have already had a number of enquiries from riders in the USA, New Zealand and Mongolia, as well as a number of local Queensland teams. With only 52 spots available, grabs it will come down to first in, first served.
More information at: www.criteriumqld.com.
Race Around the Bay
Bicycle Victoria, organisers of the Around the Bay in a Day mass participation ride, is this year turning its sights to racing. In conjunction with this year's Around the Bay in a Day for the Smith Family, Bicycle Victoria are holding the Around the Bay Melbourne Classic, a two stage single day race. Both events take place on October 19 in Melbourne, Australia.
The first stage takes in arguably Australia's most popular training route, St Kilda to Sorrento (97.5 km) while the second stage, Queenscliff to St Kilda (113 km), will probably be decided on the climb over the West Gate Bridge, 10km from the finish on St Kilda's beachfront Beconsfield Parade. Can a breakaway hold off the bunch on the 3 km long finishing straight?
The road will be closed to traffic as the race progresses with full co-operation from Victoria Police and the BMW Motorcycle Club of Victoria. Applications are open to A Grade men and women's teams of between six and eight riders. Application forms are available at the Bicycle Victoria Website (www.bv.com.au). Enquiries can also be directed to Kristjan Snorrason @ Bicycle Victoria on +61 3 8636 8847.
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