Latest Cycling News for April 6, 2005
Edited by Hedwig Kröner
Hondo positive for Carphedon
Danilo Hondo, who is currently suspended by his team Gerolsteiner for testing positive twice during the Vuelta a Murcia, has asked for the analysis of his B sample yesterday. The Madrid laboratory, where the first two tests were conducted, has not announced when the analysis will be complete yet, but sources close to Cyclingnews suggest this could be as soon as this week. Hondo will travel to Madrid in the company of Gerolsteiner team doctor Ernst Jakob.
Meanwhile, his team management has made public that the stimulant for which Hondo tested positive is Carphedon, a substance that is not included in any drug available on the market according to team doctor Jakob, who has been investigating the matter. "The substance is not very well known," he said. "It was first developed in the former Soviet Union and is now available for purchase in its pure form on specific Internet websites." Carphedon is a phenyl derivative of nootropil and effective in increasing physical endurance and cold resistance, also used for amnesia treatment.
In agreement with the UCI, team Gerolsteiner has asked a Cologne-based laboratory to analyse Hondo's privately used food complements, as well as drugs prescribed by team doctor Alexander Iablounovski in Spain. Doping substances were not found in any of the products. "These possibilities for an explanation can therefore be ruled out," Jakob said.
The incriminated rider still maintains his innocence. "I have not been doping," Hondo told German news agency dpa. "I know that this may sound ridiculous, but I don't know how the stuff got into my body. I'm going through a nightmare right now."
Hondo may face a two-year ban on his profession, and an exclusion of any ProTour team if the B test result is positive, too. "That would surely be the end of my career," he said.
Euskaltel's ProTour fears and hopes
By Martin Hardie and Unai Iraragorri of GARA
Following yesterday's Pais Vasco stage to La Lejana, Euskaltel manager Miguel Madariaga summoned the directors and team members to a meeting to discuss the current dire straights. So far this season, other than the odd unsuccessful sparkle, nothing seems to have gone right for the orange squad. Madariaga spoke to our colleague Unai Iraragorri of the Basque daily GARA after the meeting and he recounted the conversation to Cyclingnews.
Madariaga told Iraragorri that "we have a lack of confidence and we have come here with our preparation a little behind schedule. We were a bit scared of the UCI Pro Tour," he recognised, "but with a little bit more confidence the victories will come."
"This is what we are suffering from and this is what inflicts us at the moment," he continued, "but we will keep working on it. We were all in agreement at the meeting that we were not going to throw in the towel." Madariaga added that the it is "the philosophy of this team that will help us put an end to this run of bad luck. We don't have a budget as high as other teams, but we have our belief. If we had a budget of 12 million Euros, Galdeano, Astarloa or Astarloza would be here with us. [...] We have to make the best of what we have, we have a few riders with some limitations. We have three leaders but we also have riders that still haven't demonstrated their ability."
Contador recovers from crash
Liberty Seguros' Alberto Contador is feeling better since his crash on the first stage of the Vuelta a Pais Vasco on Monday. Finishing 19 seconds behind yesterday's stage two winner, David Moncoutié, Contador managed to stay in the main group until the finish line. "I've been having some troubles in the left knee, but I feel much better than I hoped," he said after the stage.
"The bandage on my knee doesn't interfere with my pedalling. The stage was very hard for the fast pace and I felt good enough, though in the end my legs were hurting - but that's the same for all of us." As for the general classification, where he is currently in 14th position, 18 seconds behind Aitor Osa, Contador said, "I don't know if these differences will be decisive, because there is still a lot of racing ahead. The key is the last stage, the first part as well as the time trial. Osa, Cunego and Rebellin are very strong, but I'll continue fighting."
For results and report of the Vuelta a Pais Vasco, click here.
Vandenbroucke postpones season start - again
Frank Vandenbroucke has been postponing his season start several times these last few weeks, and has again decided not to participate in the Circuit de la Sarthe, which started yesterday, because of suspected food-poisoning. MrBookmaker directeur sportif Lucien Van Impe is now losing his patience with the Belgian rider, and accuses him of a lack of respect in the Belgian press, which has been following the matter closely. Van Impe wants Vandenbroucke to ride Paris-Roubaix on Sunday, although he might not be very well prepared to participate in the "Hell of the North".
"It's one of Frank's last chances," Van Impe said. "That's what has been concluded in a conversation with [team manager] Hilaire Van Der Schueren and sponsor Koen Terryn." Apparently, Vandenbroucke cancelled his participation in the Circuit de la Sarthe on such a short-term that the team travelled to France with his rider belongings in the bus. Van Impe, who has his doubts on the food poisoning story, is now waiting for a phone call. "VDB just hasn't got any respect," he told Belgian Sporza. "He knows that I'm the directeur sportif here; he could call me! It's not because his name is Vandenbroucke that he can do what he wants. You just don't do that as a top sportsman. Vandenbroucke lets everybody down: the riders, the team management, and above all himself. I've told Van Der Schueren that I've had enough of it."
2005 Tour of Utah route announced
The Tour of Utah has announced the race route for the 2005 stage race, hosted by Thanksgiving Point. Scheduled for May 26-30, 2005, the Tour of Utah is a five-day, six-stage event, taking professional and amateur cyclists along a course spanning the Salt Lake and Utah Valleys. While covering almost 500 kilometres, cyclists will be riding as far west as Tooele, Utah, as far south as Santaquin, Utah, and climbing to an altitude of nearly 9,000 feet. Although the first two stages are reserved only for professional categories, amateur categories will still cover over three hundred kilometres and participate in the gruelling "Nebo" climb.
The Tour of Utah competition begins in historic downtown Provo along the business-lined Center Street corridor. The downtown Provo city streets, blocked off for this stage, will be lined with spectators as they celebrate the final day of the Utah County Bike Week festivities at the Utah Transit Authorities Bike Bonanza. On stage two, the West Desert Road Race will test the professional categories by covering over 170 kilometres across the desert terrain of newly founded Eagle Mountain, Utah. This stage is expected to favour the sprinters.
Stage three will see the Suncrest Ridge climb beginning in Lehi, UT at the Thanksgiving Point Electric Park, and have a citizen category, led out by two-time Olympian and Tour de France veteran, Frankie Andreu. The second stage on Saturday, and fourth overall, is hosted in Lehi, Utah at the Thanksgiving Point venue. Sprint favourites will compete for time and cash bonuses in a Criterium-like circuit race through Electric Park.
On stage five, the Nebo Mountain road race starts with a 40 kilometre loop around West Mountain before crossing through Payson city to begin the Nebo Mountain climb. Although not as steep as the Suncrest Ridge climb, this stage covers twice the distance and finishes atop Mount Nebo at an altitude of nearly 9,000 feet. Athletes will cover between 40 and 90 miles, depending on their ability level. The final stage of the Tour of Utah is the West Desert Time Trial, a 12-mile course for amateurs and 21-mile course for professionals, on Monday, May 30.
Stage 1 - Thursday, May 26: Downtown Provo Criterium (Professional Categories
CapTech Classic gets support
Organizers announced that several companies have joined forces to help the CapTech Classic, taking place in Downtown Richmond, Virginia on Thursday, May 26, and benefiting the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond and is part of USA Cycling's National Racing Calendar. VATEX America, one of the leading promotional products companies in the country, is donating special edition, commemorative CapTech Classic/Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond t-shirts to be sold throughout the month of May. All of the proceeds will go to BGCMR. The t-shirts will be on sale at area bike shops, fitness centers and other retail outlets.
In addition, Pacific Cycle, Inc. and Rowlett's Bicycles are teaming up to provide approximately 25 Schwinn BMX bicycles for the upcoming CapTech Classic Corporate Challenge relay race. Following their use in the Corporate Challenge, the bikes will be donated to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond for use by Richmond area youth served by the Clubs.
The Corporate Challenge will be the first race of the day during the CapTech Classic on Thursday, May 26, and is scheduled to start at 5:00 p.m. The race will be a fun relay event with teams drawn from Richmond area businesses and organizations. Each team will be "issued" one 20-inch Schwinn BMX bike which will be used by the entire team. Each team member will complete one lap around a portion of the course (approximately 6 blocks per team member) on Cary Street. The Corporate Challenge will feature two heats, followed by a "Finals" to determine the overall champion.
First Endurance & Cyclingnews Leipheimer Contest
First Endurance and Cyclingnews are offering yet another opportunity to win some great new gear. Up for grabs is a Gerolsteiner jersey signed by Levi Leipheimer and a plethora of First Endurance products. All you have to do is go to www.cyclingnews.com/sponsors/firstendurance/spring/?id=comp to answer a vey simple question: Where did Levi Leipheimer place in the 2004 Tour de France? Submit your entry by Tuesday, May 2, 2005, and you might be the lucky winner!Previous News Next News
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