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Photo ©: Sirotti

First Edition Cycling News for October 31, 2004

Edited by Hedwig Kröner

Discovery signs Japanese rider for 2005

By Tim Maloney, European Editor

Team director Johan Bruyneel told Cyclingnews at the Tour De France presentation that "we've added a 26th rider to our roster, a talented Japanese U23 rider, Fumiyuki Beppu. Discovery is very interested in the Japanese market and we did some research and found that Beppu was the best rider available."

Beppu has spent the last two seasons at VC La Pomme Marseille, a U23 team where Mark Scanlon and the Japanese rider's '04 teammate Nicolas Roche all passed pro before. 2003 Japanese U23 road champ in Hiroshima by over 4' and former Asian Jr. Road Champion, Beppu shined this year in the Euro U23 ranks; at the Giro della Valle d'Aosta, he took Stage One at Courmayeur in a photofinish and was 4th on Stage 5 and ended 3rd Overall on Points. Speedster Beppu was third at the Italian amateur classic GP Citta' di Felino in August and third on GC in the fast, flat Tour de Loir et Cher in April.

An interview with Geoff Kabush

Geoff Kabush is no newcomer to the mountain bike racing scene but his patient and steady approach to getting to the top has made this past season his best yet. Winning the NORBA final and overall series was the pinnacle of the year for the much-loved Canadian rider whose passion for the sport will see him racing his bike for many more years to come. Cyclingnews' Kristy Scrymgeour caught up with Kabush in between his autograph sessions at sponsors booths at Interbike.

Walking around the booths of Interbike this year was like going to a celebration of Canadian mountain biker Geoff Kabush. The orange and black images of the Maxxis rider were everywhere. Although Kabush modestly laughed saying it was "pretty crazy and a bit over the top," he also admitted that it was "pretty exciting," - and rightly so. After making his big break back in 2000 by making the Canadian Olympic team for Sydney, Kabush has been gradually going from strength to strength and comes away from 2004 after his best season yet.

"Every race this year except for a few I felt awesome, so I really had a great year," he said. The difference between this year and other years? "I've always been going to school and this was the first winter that I was able to totally focus on training. It really made a difference," explained Kabush.

Click here for the full interview with Geoff Kabush.

Colnago announces 2005 team sponsorships

By Tim Maloney, European Editor

Ernesto Colnago told Cyclingnews late Friday that "we've finalized our team sponsorships for 2005 and I'm happy to tell you that we just completed an agreement with the Domina Vacanze-De Nardi team. With a place in the ProTour, experienced riders like Serguei Gonchar, Mirko Celestino, Jörg Ludewig and Wladimir Belli, as well as emerging riders like Michele Gobbi and Maxim Iglinskiy and talented neo-pros like Grivko, Rigotto and Visconti, Domina Vacanze-De Nardi will be an excellent team for Colnago in the future."

Colnago also noted that he will continue his sponsorship with ProTour team Rabobank and Continental Pro formation Landbouwkrediet. "Rabobank is such a strong team and so professional; we like to work with them very much. With riders like World Champion Oscar Freire, Michael Boogerd and Erik Dekker as well as new arrivals Menchov, Horrillo, Kolobnev and Thomas Dekker, we know that Rabobank will perform on the top level of cycling." Several weeks ago at the Gran Gala Ciclistica in Conegliano, Italy, Colnago was awarded the GP Somec as the winningest bike brand of 2004. "It was special for me to win this, especially as my special friend Oscar Freire, who has won two World Championships on Colnago, awarded it to me."

Colnago will add Italian squad Ceramiche Panaria - Margres to his roster. "We sponsored Panaria when Pavel Tonkov won the Giro d'Italia on our bicycle," he said, "They have some interesting riders like Emmanuele Sella, Australian Graeme Brown and Mexican Julio Perez-Cuapio." Colnago will also maintain his sponsorship of American squad Navigators Insurance.

Superprestige continues, Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee Veldrijden starts

The third Superprestige race this year will be held in Sint-Michielsgestel, Netherlands on Sunday October 31. As there is only one point difference between Sven Nys et Sven Vanthourenhout, an exciting race is expected on the parcours of Richard Groenendaal.

On Monday, November 1, the Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee Veldrijden will start at the Koppenberg, Belgium. With six other races to follow, the Trofee ends in February. The participating riders at these two races will be:

Superprestige Sint-Michielsgestel - Elite:

1. Bart Wellens (Bel); 2. Ben Berden (Bel); 3. Camiel van den Bergh (Ned); 4. Petr Dlask (Cze); 5. John Gadret (Fra); 6. Dariusz Gil (Pol); 7. Wilant van Gils (Ned); 8. Richard Groenendaal (Ned); 9. Wim Jacobs (Bel); 10. Vaclav Jezek (Cze); 11. Tadeusz Korzeniewski (Pol); 12. Maarten Nijland (Ned); 13. Sven Nys (Bel); 14. Jonathan Page (USA); 15. Peter Van Santvliet (Bel); 16. Tom Vannoppen (Bel); 17. Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel); 18. Erwin Vervecken (Bel); 19. Martin Zlamalik (Cze); 20. Bart Aernouts (Bel); 21. Leon Brouwer (Ned); 22. Richard Calis (Ned); 23. Neequaye Dsane (Ned); 24. Frank Groenendaal (Ned); 25. Roel van Houtum (Ned); 26. Patrick de Laat (Ned); 27. Nard Louws (Ned); 28. Marco Luyten (Ned); 29. Tim Van Nuffel (Bel); 30. Edwin van Pinxteren (Ned); 31. Malte Urban (Ger); 32. Wilfried Veldkamp (Ned); 33. Erik Verrijt (Ned); 34. Micha de Vries (Ned).

Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee Veldrijden Koppenberg - Elite:

Belgium: Bart Wellens, Sven Nys, Ben Berden, Erwin Vervecken, Mario De Clercq, Peter Van Santvliet, Wim Jacobs, Bart Aernouts, Jan Verstraeten, Sven Vanthourenhout, David Willemsens, Tim Van Nuffel, Davy Commeyne, Tom Vannoppen, Björn Rondelez
Netherlands: Richard Groenendaal, Camiel van den Bergh, Wilant van Gils
Switzerland: Christian Heule, Michael Baumgartner
Czech Republic: Vaclav Jezek, Jiri Pospisil Poland: Tadeusz Korzeniewski, Dariusz Gil USA: Jonathan Page
UK: Matthew Ellis
Spain: Isaac Suarez
France: John Gadret

Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee Veldrijden - The next races:

November 11, 2004: Jaarmarktcross Niel
December 18, 2004: GP Rouwmoer Essen
December 29, 2004: Azencross Loenhout
January 1, 2005: GP Sven Nys Baal
February 5, 2005: Krawatencross Lille
February 20, 2005: Sluitingsprijs Oostmalle

K2 - NZ’s toughest race this week-end

K2 is renown in mountain climbing circles as the world’s toughest peak. But in New Zealand it is a gruelling 200 km cycle event attracting the country’s best riders. Among the 800 entries for this weekend race are Kiwi internationals Glen Mitchell, Scott Guyton and Gordon McCauley.

With over 40 km and 2300 vertical metres of climbing, K2 combines the rigours of European cycling with New Zealand’s supreme surroundings to produce a challenge that in only its third year has already become a favourite amongst elite and recreational cyclists alike.

Starting from Tairua, the 200km course takes a scenic but savage tour of the Peninsula via Whitianga, Kuaotunu, Coromandel and Thames to finish back in Tairua. The crux point of the course is the 10km long, 425m high Kopu-Hikuai Hill, an Everest'esque climb that coming in the final 40km promises to be the decider in this years race.

Favourite for the feature K2 200km is defending champion Glen Mitchell, who has enjoyed fine form of late with a strong sixth place in Australia’s prestigious Herald Sun Tour. Scott Guyton finished 11th in that race and is expected to provide Mitchell’s strongest challenge. Others expected to feature are mountain bike Palmerston North specialist Mark Leishman, Ryan Russell (Hamilton) and Paul Sumich (Akld), who finished 10th and 15th respectively in last weeks national road championship. But the joker in the pack could be former New Zealand champion Gordon McCauley, who if anywhere near past form could blow the race wide open.

The women’s race will be a battle between recent national championship standouts Toni Bradshaw (Akld) and Vickie Burr (Morrinsville). Bradshaw finished sixth at the nationals, just one place ahead of Burr and the two will face off again on the Coromandel Peninsula’s cruel climbs.

The event also features the Pearl Izumi K1, a half distance option that has also attracted some of New Zealand’s top riders. Favourites include former K2 runner-up Karl Murray and fellow Aucklander Aaron Strong, who finished 12th in last weekends national championship.

Organised by Adventure Racing Coromandel, a community based outdoor events organisation who also organise the popular Moehau Man multisport race, ARC adventure race and Matarangi mountain bike event, K2 takes it’s name from the 200 km distance and the Coromandel township of Kuaotunu, which in Maori means "to inspire fear in young animals." And like the mountain with which this challenging new race shares its name, K2 promises to do exactly that.

TT Championships in Zimbabwe

This Sunday will see the curtain call of the Zimbabwe cycling season, with the running of the National Time Trial Championships at the Shamva Road circuit in the capital Harare. The countries most powerful riders will tackle a technically easy but very demanding course set for 40 km. The reigning National Champion Wonder Matenje (TYRE KAYA) will see his season long rivalry with Antipass Kwari (INTERFIN) set to continue, and although Matenje has traditionally had the edge over Kwari, the two will need to be wary of the countries most experienced Time Trialist in Pierre Gouws (TYRE KAYA) who last weekend laid down the gauntlet with a world class performance at an average speed of 43 km/h.

The punters choice will be Interfin's Kevin Wood, always capable of a Championship winning ride, who has recently been indicating the type of condition that could well see his surprise the favorites.

The Ladies title will be a two up challenge between last years champion Margie Gibson and the former title holder Linda Davidson. The Junior titles are expected to be taken by TYRE KAYA’s Jonathan Brash and Nicola Elcombe.

Mondial Assistance amateur team launched

A new amateur cycling team has been launched in Brisbane a few days ago: Mondial Assistance Cycling Team, sponsored by a French assistance company. Upcoming races for the team include the Tour of Queensland and the Noos International Criterium. The riders on the team roster are: David Betts, Mark Roland, Jonathon Cantwell, Luke Stockwell, Jeremy Betts, Brad Nightingale, Brendan Hill and Ian Agnew.

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