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Mt Hood Classic
Photo ©: Swift

First Edition Cycling News for November 6, 2004

Edited by Jeff Jones

Sunderland retires

Winning the GP Pino Cerami
Photo ©: Belga
Click for larger image
Cyclingnews' longest serving diarist and a pro for 15 years, Scott Sunderland (Alessio-Bianchi), has announced his retirement as a professional cyclist. The soon-to-be 38 year old wrote in his latest diary, "To some it might seem like a logical decision, keeping my age in mind and knowing that this 15th pro-season was as rewarding as it could get. Others will react disappointed and will advise me to have a go at yet another season on the bike. But my mind is set, I'm calling it a day.

This decision hasn't been made overnight. Regular readers of my diary know that I was thinking about making the 2004 season my last one.

Cycling has been good to me. I started racing at the age of 7 and becoming a professional was my biggest goal from that moment on. Once I achieved that feat, new challenges were always motivating me. My love for cycling, the unconditional help and patience of my wife Sabine and the trust of all those people who kept believing in my abilities made it all possible. During the hard times I was always supported by the friendship of my colleagues in the peloton and the Cyclingnews readers.

Since I made the decision to announce my retirement different aspects of my life seem to be synchronising and as I write this, the formalities to a new and interesting career are being finalised. I'll be able to tell you more about that some time next week!

Click here to read the full entry and see the photo gallery of Scott Sunderland over the years

Vainsteins clarifies

After Latvian daily Diena reported that 2000 World Champion Romans Vainsteins will retire at the end of the season, the Lampre sprinter said that he intends to keep racing. "I haven't signed a professional Pro Tour contract for the moment for next year, but I will still race with all my passion and with my heart," he said in a statement. "I wish to reach the same professional results that I achieved up to now. I have full trust in the Pro Tour teams, and I'd like to find a good agreement with them for the next season."

No broken thumb for Hoy

Olympic kilometre champion Chris Hoy is in better spirits after learning that his thumb is not broken after a training crash this week. Chris was out with Graeme Obree, Craig MacLean and a BBC film crew on Friday to shoot some video in the Peak District of the UK. After completing an interview, Chris, Graeme and Craig took to their mountain bikes but within 100 metres, Chris went over the bars and decided he had broken his thumb.

Hoy set off back to Manchester velodrome (with hospital in mind), with a couple of cold cans of Coke held onto the affected area to control the swelling. By the time he arrived back at the velodrome, he was feeling better. The physios checked things out and it seems like it was merely soft tissue damage, meaning that Hoy should be fit to travel to Germany on Wednesday for the Six Days of Munich.

About his victory in Athens, Hoy wrote on his website, , "Obviously the kilo gold was the high point for me; the culmination of eight years of preparation and work, to finally achieve a lifetime's ambition was a truly incredible feeling. The race itself went exactly as I'd visualised hundreds of times prior to the big day, in fact it was so similar to how I'd hoped it would go, that when I finished, it almost felt like just another mental rehearsal. It took a couple of laps of riding round afterwards before I really believed what had happened.

"I just circled the track in a daze with my arm in the air. Then suddenly, with the Union Jack above my head, I let out a huge yell as the reality eventually set in...Hard to describe the feeling of relief and total disbelief at the same time."

Wellens takes a week off

World Cyclo-cross Champion Bart Wellens (Fidea) will not race this weekend, after his doctors advised him to rest from competition for a week. Wellens has not been at his best form this season and will use the week to recover from his efforts so far. If he is feeling good by next Tuesday, he will race in Niel. Otherwise, he will continue to take time out of competition.

Emergency operation for De Vries

Dutch mountain biker/cyclo-crosser Micha de Vries (Merlan Duo-Be One) has suffered an case of acute appendicitis, his team reported. He felt ill on Thursday afternoon and was taken to hospital, where doctors performed an operation on Thursday evening. It's expected that he will make a complete recovery, but it is not known how long he will be out of competition for.

European Cyclo-cross Championships in Vossem

The European Cyclo-cross Championships will take place this Sunday in Vossem, Belgium. The championships will be raced by the Women, Juniors and U23 Men, and there will be a non-championship Elite Men's race afterwards.

Favourites for the U23 race include: Kevin Pauwels, Niels Albert, Radomir Simunek, Zdenek Stybar, Mariusz Gil, Krzysztof Kuzniak and Clément L'Hotellerie; while in the juniors, Jan Van Dael, Tom Meeusen, Ricardo van der Velde, Lukas Kloucek and Guillaume Perot look to be the top riders. Among the women, Daphny van den Brand, Hanka Kupfernagel, Laurence Leboucher and Maryline Salvetat should all vie for the title of European Champion.


10:30 Women
12:00 Juniors
13:30 U23 Men
15:00 Elite Men

St. Wendel gets ready for the World's

Next year's World Cyclo-Cross Championships will take place in the German region of Saarland as the town of St. Wendel plays host to the World's on January 29-30, 2005. The World's were last held in that region 50 years ago when the title was decided in Saarbrücken.

The circuit is 2.8 km in length and includes 85% of natural terrain. It's a demanding course that features only 15% of flat, with the rest being either climbing or descending. There are two barriers and a set of stairs to complete the technical difficulties.

German Hanka Kupfernagel, dual World Cyclo-cross Champion, is the favourite to take a title for the host country. "St.Wendel will be huge," she said. "Riding the World Championships at home is always something special. My goal is the world championship title. If I can win, it'll help German cyclo-cross in general."


Saturday, January 29: Junior Men (11:00)
Saturday, January 29: U23 Men (14:00)
Sunday, January 30: Elite Women (11:00)
Sunday, January 30: Elite Men (14:00)

Navigators names 2005 squad

The New Jersey, USA based Navigators Insurance Cycling Team has announced its 2005 roster. In addition to the six new signings already announced, the team will have nine members of the 2004 squad returning. 2000 Olympic gold medallist Marty Nothstein will headline the team, riding the UCI World Cup track events before refocusing on the road. Other returning riders are Chris Baldwin, Jeff Louder, Kirk O'Bee, and Phil Zajicek (all USA), Mark Walters (Can), Vassili Davidenko (Rus), Siro Camponogara (Ita), and Ciaran Power (Irl). New to the team are Hilton Clarke (, Cesar Grajales (Jittery Joe's), Oleg Grichkine, Shawn Milne (neo-pro), David O'Loughlin and Nathan O'Neill (Colavita).

Team director Ed Beamon commented that Marty Nothstein will be a "dangerous threat in U.S. road racing" next year, after he finishes his track commitments. Nothstein added, "It has been my ambition for several years to finish my career as a Navigator, and I am really pumped with the adjustments the team has made to the roster. I am happy to be back as a part of this group, and I am really looking forward for the opportunity to excel on the track and the road circuit this year."

Navigators is registered as a Professional Continental team, and will begin the season in Australia at the Jacobs Creek Tour Down Under Jan 18th-23rd. JCTDU is the first race on the 2005 International Calendar, and the Navigators Insurance Team is the only American team to ever compete in this event.

Nobili Rubinetterie-Guerciotti 2005

Nobili Rubinetterie-Guerciotti has completed its roster for 2005, with the signing of 21 year-old Lithuanian Modesta Vzesniauskaite. The team is losing Cathy Marsal, Kym Shirley and Valentina Polkhanova, but adding Edita Pucinskaite, Joanne Kiesanowski and Russians Oxana Kostenko and Svetlana Denissenko. Also, existing stars such as Olga Slyusareva, Alison Wright and Daniela Fusar Poli are riding for the team again in 2005.

Cafés Baqué loses sponsor

The battling Spanish team Cafés Baqué has lost its most important co-sponsor, Colombian telecom company Orbitel, which has backed the team for the last two seasons. Orbitel's management told Cafés Baqué team president Erkaitz Elkoroiribe that it was putting its money into other areas, and would no longer fund the cycling team.

Elkoroiribe was quoted by Marca as saying, "The saddest thing about this is that a marvelous team formed by cyclists, mechanics and massage therapists and others will lose their jobs after having shown their value as professionals and human beings."

The good news for Elkoroiribe was that Cafés Baqué has vowed to continue supporting the team, even if not at the professional level.

Fat lady sings for Team Bianchi Nordic

Swedish third division cycling team Bianchi Nordic has announced that the team will cease to exist after 2004. The team, started by Cycleurope Nordic in 2000 to market its cycling brands, had the ambition to develop Swedish MTB and road talents in a doping-free environment.

The team, first named Team Crescent, got off to a flying start when Stefan Adamsson won the Swedish Championships, and then followed up with a second place at the European Championships the same year. During the years, the team has won 190 international victories, and among those 20 national championship gold medals. Despite the team's success, Cycleurope Nordic has decided to cut down on its marketing budget, leaving no space for the cycling team.

In 2003, Team Crescent turned into Team Bianchi Scandinavia, as Bianchi was the cycling brand that Cycleurope wished to market in the Nordic countries, and that also meant that Crescent discontinued its manufacturing of its top model road and MTB bikes.

In 2004, the team was opened up for participants from all the Nordic countries, hence the named changed to Team Bianchi Nordic. During this season, the team won the Ringerike GP in Norway with Kimmo Kananen, Grote Prijs New Heebra in Belgium with Glenn Bak and two stages of Roserittet in Norway with Martin Vestby. In total, the team won 40 victories, notably the Swedish road championships and the short distance championships, both won by Petter Renäng.

Team Bianchi Nordic has been registered as a trade team III with the UCI since 2001, and has therefore had the opportunity to match its riders in international races against the real pros. After riding for the team, several riders have taken the step to become professional riders themselves, among them Stefan Adamsson (Team Coast - 2000), Jonas Ljungblad (Amore Vita - 2001), Gustav Larsson (Fassa Bortolo - 2002), Fredrik Kessiakoff (Motorex-Bianchi - 2002), Thomas Lövkvist ( - 2003), Petter Renäng (Liquigas-Bianchi - 2004) and Jonas Holmkvist (Amore-Vita - 2004).

Glud & Marstrand adds

Glud & Marstrand Horsens has signed 18 year old Kim M. Nielsen to its roster for 2005.

UCI doping news

The following riders have been sanctioned by the UCI for doping offences:

Hernani Broco, sanctioned by the Federacao Portuguesa de Ciclismo, fine of CHF2000.
Guillermo Cuesta Beltran, doctor, sanctioned by the Federacao Portuguesa de Ciclismo, warning and fine of CHF3500
Geneviève Jeanson, sanctioned by the USADA, warning and fine of CHF500
Robert Sassone, sanctioned by the Federation Francaise de Cyclisme, disqualification from the 6 Jours de Noumea, New Caledonia on December 2, 2003, suspension of two years from July 6, 2004 to July 5, 2006.

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