First Edition Cycling News for December 22, 2004
Edited by Anthony Tan
Landis making the best of a bad situation
Relaxing with his family back home in Southern California, Floyd Landis had recently returned from a trip to Zurich, Switzerland one week ago, where he met with Phonak team management and a few of the riders to obtain a clearer understanding of what was happening with the team, and discuss making the most of a difficult situation.
Although constructed to be a major ProTour team, Phonak's ProTour license application was not accepted by the UCI's Professional Cycling Council in November, nor accepted on appeal early in December. Since then, Phonak riders and staff have scrambled to figure out what 2005 will have in store for the Swiss squad.
"I've been back for a week and I have decided to stay with the Phonak team," said Landis to Cyclingnews. "Sure, I had some other opportunities but I decided to stay. It was not an easy decision, but I'm happy with it. In many ways, it wasn't Phonak's fault that they didn't get into the ProTour in 2005 and I still believe that they have good intentions. Things should work out... and it's sad for cycling if a guy like [Phonak boss] Andy Riis is out. He cares a lot about the sport and his team."
Asked if it will be strange being the only American after Phonak team leader Tyler Hamilton was fired by the team as a knee-jerk reaction to hold their spot in UCI's Major League, the 29 year-old admitted he "would have liked to have had him around", but doesn't see Hamilton's absence as a stumbling block to his goals next season. Said Landis, "I've been on an American team where I've been the only American at the race, so Phonak is no problem that way."
Landis will leave his American home to take part in the first of Phonak's pre-season training camps in Spain commencing January 10, 2005. Still unsure of his race schedule, he believes Paris-Nice, Criterium International and the Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré are probables, with a brief return to the US also likely.
Look out for the full interview today on Cyclingnews.
US-based UCI Continental Teams announced
T-Mobile returns as only UCI women's squad in US
On Tuesday, December 21, USA Cycling announced the submission of registration materials to the UCI on behalf of 12 potential US-based UCI Continental Teams and one UCI women's team in consideration for the 2005 season. Under the UCI's road cycling reform plan, teams formerly recognized as Division III trade teams will now be registered by the international governing body under the new 'Continental Teams' moniker.
Paperwork has been sent to the UCI on behalf of the following potential Continental Teams:
Colavita Olive Oil/Sutter Home Pro Cycling Team
Additionally, there are currently two other Continental Teams whose applications to USA Cycling are still pending. The UCI allows for a maximum of 15 Continental Teams from one country. Navigators Insurance are already registered as a UCI Professional Continental Team after being a Division II trade team in 2004.
New to the professional fray in 2005 are Team Nerac.com, TIAA-CREF and Team Snow Valley presented by Seal-On. Teams returning under the same title as last season include 2004 USA Cycling National Racing Calendar champions, Health Net presented by Maxxis, Team Monex, Team Seasilver, Webcor Builders Cycling Team and Subway Cycling Team. Several other teams are also returning, albeit with a new title, thanks to support from different or additional sponsors. Those include Colavita Olive Oil/Sutter Home Pro Cycling Team, Jittery Joe's/Kalahari Pro Cycling Team, Jelly Belly/Pool Gel and McGuire/Langdale.
USA Cycling has also submitted paperwork on behalf of the lone American women's squad, the T-Mobile Professional Cycling Team.
Other American teams set for the 2005 season include the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team and the Navigators Insurance Cycling Team. Formerly the U.S. Postal Service squad, the Discovery Channel team will be captained by six-time Tour de France Champion Lance Armstrong and will race as a UCI Pro Tour Team, the governing body's most elite class.
Pinotti comfy at Saunier Duval
After Saunier Duval's first get-together in Cantabria, Spain, held from December 14-17, Italian Marco Pinotti has found the atmosphere on his new team to his liking after six seasons with Lampre. Staying at the Hotel Camino Real in Selores, with all 25 present bar American Chris Horner and José Angel Gomez Marchante (who signed up during the camp), riders had a chance to meet their new team-mates and business owner Mauro Gianetti, undergo medical check-ups, get properly fitted on their new Scott race bikes and race/casual clothing, and enjoy three training sessions together, which varied between three to four hours in length.
"The first meeting was very good," said Pinotti on his personal website. "We had a good atmosphere in the team; we are a group and a family. We made a [race] program and also had the photo session. I had the opportunity to talk with Gianetti and to know him. I think that he's a kind and well prepared person, he's always present and available."
Pinotti's race schedule until March 2005 will comprise the GP Doha, Tour of Qatar, GP Laigueglia, Classico Haribo, Tour du Haut Var, GP Chiasso, GP Lugano, and Tirreno Adriatico. "But the big goal will be the Giro d'Italia!" added Pinotti, "with the Tour of Romandie as preparation."
28 year-old Pinotti spent his last six seasons riding for Italian-based squad Lampre, with his best result coming in 2003 at the hors categorie Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco in April, where he won the fourth stage and the mountains classification.
Roulston to appeal criminal charges
After being found guilty of assault by the Christchurch District Court last week, New Zealand cyclist Hayden Roulston, slated to ride for Lance Armstrong's Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team in 2005, has decided to appeal his sentence.
According to stuff.co.nz, Roulston initially said he would not appeal his conviction, but changed his mind after "thinking long and hard about it", said his lawyer, James Rapley. Roulston maintains he did not assault the two staff at a Christchurch bar on the night of June 3, 2004, while celebrating his selection into the New Zealand Olympic team, and will appeal against both his conviction and sentence.
However, his appeal runs contrary to supporting evidence by witnesses on the night, who identified Roulston as the assailant in the brawl, which Judge Bisphan deemed sufficient to find him guilty of two charges of assault. It is believed that a criminal conviction may jeopardise the 23 year-old's ability to travel to the US to fulfil his two-year contract with the Discovery Channel cycling team, although whether this is indeed the case is not known for sure. The appeal is likely to be filed early next year.
Scaryfast Lance wins cyclocross race
After first demonstrating his off-road prowess to the world on the ninth stage of the 2003 Tour de France, where Lance Armstrong made a remarkable cross country diversion to avoid piling into Joseba Beloki on the descent of the Côte De La Rochette, before re-catching the lead group, the six-time Tour winner was at it again over the weekend.
Armstrong and US Postal (soon to be Discovery Channel) team-mate Tony Cruz rocked up to last Sunday's Scaryfast Santa 'Cross race in Southern California, and as the A Men's bunch set off at a blistering pace and over the first set of barriers, it was clear Lance and Tony had done this once or twice before. In the style of a typical mountain stage at the Tour, Armstrong bided his time behind Santa #1 (Mark Noble), who took off midway through the race, while Cruz and Celo Pacific rider Brent Prenzlow made the pace behind. With five laps to go, the Tour champion released a trademark blow to poor Santa on the climb, who warned Armstrong, "You're officially on the Naughty List now, boy!" - to which Lance replied: "I'm already on that list, remember!"
Crossing the line amidst a sea of applause, Santa #1 grumbled in second, with Prenzlow third and Cruz fourth. Armstrong said afterwards, "My head is about to explode, that was hard!" Thankfully, that didn't happen, as he embraced his girlfriend Sheryl Crow, who gave her boy a nice smooch for taking out a small but perhaps significant victory. Both Armstrong and Cruz donated their prizemoney to the Lance Armstrong Foundation.
Click here to view a photo gallery from the race.
2005 Jayco Bay Cycling Classic launched
The 2005 Jayco Bay Cycling Classic was launched on Monday at Pelicans Landing Bar & Restaurant in Williamstown, Victoria. Host Rob Gaylard welcomed an impressive array of media and had a chat with series stars Graeme Brown, Hilton Clark, William Walker and Katie Mactier.
The Jayco Bay Classic will have a golden look about it when the cycling series returns early next month. Now in its 17th year, the series will feature Athens gold medallists Graeme Brown and Brett Lancaster and the world's leading sprinter Robbie McEwen, who is back seeking his sixth title. The series starts at Williamstown on January 5 then heads for Portarlington on January 6, Geelong on January 7 and 8 for evening races, then finishes at Docklands on January 9.
"The success of our cyclists at Athens and with Robbie winning the green jersey again in this year's Tour de France makes this an absolute top-class field," Race Director John Trevorrow said after the launch. "Robbie is probably the best criterium rider in the world and Brown showed a couple of years ago he gives no quarter to anyone."
'Brownie' is now over his achilles problem which plagued him for much of 2004. His gold medals in the teams pursuit and the madison at the Olympics was the obvious highlight, but his nagging injury prevented him from competing in the World Road Championships and the Giro d'Italia. "I was just not right and I missed a lot of the season. It came good just in time for the Olympics even though it wasn't 100 per cent," Brown said. "I'm just lucky that the time it came good was coinciding with Athens. Now, since Athens, I have had time to work on it and it's better than it has been all year."
There is tons of class in the women's event. World Cup champion Oenone Wood is back to defend her title and Katie Mactier, silver medallist in the Athens women's pursuit, will provide tough opposition. Mactier rated Wood the hardest to beat, but said the highly credentialled US rider Meredith Miller would be a threat to all the riders.
This January, the Jayco Bay Cycling Classic will have some new innovations. The women's event, which has evolved into a brilliant series over the past decade, will be teams event for the first time. The Friday evening event on Geelong's magnificent waterfront will also be the Australian Criterium Championship for men and women. The final day at Melbourne's new growth centre, Docklands, will also host the Victorian Junior Criterium title for both men and women.
Images by Cyclingnews
Click here for more details on the 2005 Jayco Bay Cycling Classic.
Health Net/Maxxis finalises 2005 roster
One of the top domestic teams in the US, the Health Net Pro Cycling Team presented by Maxxis has announced their rider and sponsor roster for 2005.
Adam Craig (USA; road and mountain)
Team director: Jeff Corbett
Team sponsors: title sponsor: Health Net; presenting sponsor: Maxxis Tires.
Industry sponsors: Giant Bicycles, Reynolds Composites, Ritchey Componets, Verge Sport, Speedplay, Shimano, Bell, CytoMax, Athlete Octane, Fi'zi:k, Rudy Project, Paceline Products, Peak Bar, CycleOps.
Webcor teams with Specialized
The Webcor Builders Professional Cycling Team has selected Specialized bicycles and equipment for their riders in 2005, adding a US presence to their European connection with Gerolsteiner next season. In its third year of sponsoring a UCI-registered pro team, Webcor Builders' star riders will include two-time winner of the T-Mobile International, Charles Dionne, and David Clinger, who already has familiarity with Specialized bicycles after riding with Mario Cipollini's Domina Vacanze squad this season.
"When we looked at racing in the States, Webcor topped the list," said founder and president of Specialized, Mike Sinyard. "The fact that we're both based in the [San Francisco] Bay Area will allow us to closely collaborate on a number of R&D projects, which is an added plus."
Webcor will race upon S-Works Tarmac road and Transition TT bicycles, Decibel helmets, Specialized Optics, and a wide array of accessories from Specialized. Sinyard also told Cyclingnews that "the Webcor Tarmacs will have a few graphic tweaks but will very close to stock colors." Look out for more details including photos of the bikes in an upcoming edition of Tech News.
Broadmark Capital announces 2005 roster
While we're still on the domestic front, the Broadmark Capital Cycling Team announced their 19-rider line-up for the 2005 season, which includes nine Under 23 riders. Over the past six years, the team claim to be the top amateur cycling program in the United States, with an emphasis on developing emerging Northwest cycling talent. Since establishing its elite program in 2001, Broadmark Capital has developed 10 professional riders, including Evan Elken, Jonny Sundt and Craig Wilcox (Jittery Joes), Tyler Farrar (Health Net), Cam Evans and Svien Tuft (Symmetrics), and Omer Kem (Subway).
Carl Decker will be returning to the team when he is not racing on the professional MTB circuit. Justin Morgan will also be returning to race with Broadmark Capital when he is in the US, but will be spending March to June in Belgium racing for the Cycling Center. New to the elite squad will be Adam Curry, Dustin MacBurnie and Solomon Woras. New Zealander Adam Curry enjoyed success in 2004 with podium finishes at Wisconsin's Superweek and the Mt Hood Cycling Classic. Dustin MacBurnie spent the 2004 season racing in Europe and represented Canada at the U23 world road championships. After podium finishes at the Ecology Center Classic in just his third year of racing, Solomon Woras will be lending his climbing prowess to the team. U23 National Championship podium finisher, Owen Gue, will also be racing select events with the Elite team.
Team PH to become Team GLS
As a result of a new sponsorship deal with local company GLS, Denmark's most successful amateur team, Team PH will be known as Team GLS for the next two seasons, according to Danish website, Feltet.dk.
New elite riders joining the team will be Jimmy Hansen, Lars H. Thomsen, Marc Hester and Michael Mørkøv, while Nicki Østergaard (ex. Horsens), Morten Høberg (ex. Hedehusene-Fløng) and Nikolaj Olsen (ex. Hobro) will join as new recruits on the junior team.
USA Cycling Track Team of the Year announced
USA Cycling has named Hammer Racing Team, based in Colorado, the 2004 Track Team of the Year. Hammer won the award with a combination of top results and many hours of 'giving back to the sport'. Hammer Racing Team is an elite Masters track team, winning the Masters team track title this year on its home track in Colorado Springs, taking the title five out of the last six years.
"All of our members are committed to track racing and to giving back to the sport. It is this commitment and the camaraderie on this team that makes it so special, and such a great team to be a part of," said team spokesperson Rich Voss.
Hammer also promotes races during the summer at the 7-11 Olympic Training Center Velodrome. One of the more popular races Hammer promotes is the "Hammer Time Trial Day", where the riders get to go against the clock in every distance from 200 meters to 4000 meters. Hammer, last season, boasts two new Masters national track champions in Marsha Macro and Jim Murdock. Also last season Marsha Macro and Rich Voss won World Masters Titles in Manchester, England.
(All rights reserved/Copyright Knapp Communications Pty Limited 2004)