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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

First Edition Cycling News for September 17, 2005

Edited by Hedwig Kröner & Jeff Jones

Vuelta stage 19 wrap up

Haussler triumphs over older rival

Heinrich Haussler (Gerolsteiner)
Photo ©: Unipublic
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21 year-old neo-pro Heinrich Haussler (Gerolsteiner) has won a tight battle with Swiss Martin Elmiger (Phonak) and David Latasa (Comunidad Valenciana), with a great final surge to claim the victory in Alcobendas. The three, along with Juan Fuentes (Lampre), were the best of a large and complicated breakaway, which split up in the final 13 km. After Fuentes tried to attack in the final kilometre, Haussler and Elmiger chased him down, with Haussler saving just enough to win the sprint.

In this short transition stage between San Martin de Valdeiglesias and Alcobendas, the attacks started straight away and after 14 km, there were four leaders: Pablo Lastras (Illes Balears), Constantino Zaballa Gutierrez (Saunier Duval), Adolfo Garcia Quesada (Comunidad Valenciana), and Linus Gerdemann (CSC). They were later joined by Roberto Laiseka (Euskaltel-Euskadi), while a big group chased behind at 2'00: Koos Moerenhout, Leon Van Bon, Gert Steegmans (Davitamon - Lotto), Jose Miguel Elias Jorge Garcia (Relax), Martin Elmiger (Phonak), Mauro Gerosa (Liquigas), Bingen Fernandez (Cofidis), Javier Pascual Rodriguez and David Latasa (Comunidad Valenciana), Daniele Nardello (T-Mobile), Heinrich Haussler (Gerolsteiner), Juan Manuel Fuentes (Lampre), Angel Gomez (Saunier Duval), José Vicente Garcia Acosta (Illes Balears), Alberto Ongarato and Fabio Baldato (Fassa Bortolo), and Frédéric Finot (Française des Jeux).

With 38 km to go, Gerdemann, Lastras, and Garcia Quesada dropped the rest, who were caught by Steegmans, Elias, Elmiger, Haussler, Fuentes, and Latasa. Garcia Quesada set off solo at 28 km to go, as Lastras refused to work with Gerdemann. But when they were caught by Fuentes, Latasa, Haussler and Elmiger, they were eventually able to close down the gap to the lone leader with 14 km to go. An immediate counter saw Haussler, Elmiger, Latasa and Fuentes form the final break, and of this, Haussler proved to be better than Elmiger in the uphill sprint.

Also see:

Stage 19 full results & report
Live report
Stages & results
Start List

Double for Gerolsteiner

Heinrich Haussler (Gerolsteiner)
Photo ©: AFP
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German team Gerolsteiner had all the reasons to be overwhelmingly happy today: 21 year-old Australo-German neo-pro Heinrich Haussler won the first stage for Gerolsteiner in the Vuelta a España by outsprinting older rivals Martin Elmiger (Phonak) and David Latasa (Comunidad Valenciana), when at the same time his teammate Fabian Wegmann scored a stage win in faraway Poland - also in the sprint, by beating the likes of Filippo Pozzato and Danilo Di Luca.

"We're all absolutely happy - this really is great for our team," said directeur sportif Raimund Dietzen in Spain after Haussler's stage victory. "Heinrich did this in a very intelligent manner. I had said before the race that if we were to win a stage here, it would be in a breakaway. But it exceeds all my expectations that it happened so fast. That's sensational!"

Haussler had bridged to the front of the race from a chase group, and then had enough strenth left to win the sprint over two very experienced, older riders. "I'm totally happy," said the young man from Inverell, Australia, who came to Germany aged 14 to make a living out of his cycling talent. "I always sprinted fairly well, but during the race I asked myself if the other three actually knew that..." he added with a grin. (Inverell, pop. 11,000, is a famous cycling town in Australia, home to retired Australian professional, Scott Sunderland, now a DS with CSC, and also the host of the finish of Australia's toughest one-day race, the 228km Grafton-Inverell, held this weekend.)

Some thousands of kilometres to the Northeast, and just a few minutes later, his teammate Fabian Wegmann achieved the second victory for Gerolsteiner today. By beating Italian Filippo Pozzato (Quick.Step) and Slovenian Uros Murn (Phonak), the 25 year-old climber is now also placed second on GC behind Luca Paolini (Quick.Step). With temperatures of only 12° celsius and a mountaintop finish, today's Tour of Poland stage 5 was to Wegmann's taste.

Just like Haussler, Wegmann was part of a chase group behind Wim Van Huffel and Johan Van Summeren (both Davitamon-Lotto), which were caught at the foot of the last climb. "He just hit the gas in front and nobody was able to follow his wheel: no Di Luca, no Paolini," said a happy directeur sportif Christian Henn. "Fabian just cooked them; it was great! His performance was fantastic - really, really strong. Today we're going to party, and think over what we'll do with his second placing on GC over a glass of champagne or a beer tonight."

Bad news for Rebellin

At the same time, Gerolsteiner also had to announce some bad news: Davide Rebellin was diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his right elbow as a consequence of his crash in the second stage of the Tour of Poland. Rebellin had to abandon the race the next day and was now treated in Italy. Rebellin does not need a plaster and may continue to train, but the injury does jeopardize his season' end, where the 34 year-old was planned to participate in yet another three races: the Züri Metzgete, the Giro dell’ Emilia or Paris-Tours and the Giro di Lombardia.

Cañada out of Vuelta due to heart problems

By Hernan Alvarez Macias in Alcobendas

David Cañada (Saunier Duval) had to quit the Vuelta a España at kilometre 53 of today's stage 19. The Spanish rider suffered an indisposition due to an elevation of his heart rate (tachychardia). This caused the cyclist to be sent to a nearby hospital in Madrid by the race doctors, where he has to stay until tomorrow. Spain’s TVE talked with Saunier Duval team director Josean "Matxin" Fernandez who said that "Cañada had more than 230 heartbeats per minute for some minutes and we were scared."

The latest news has it that Cañada is in a stable condition at the hospital. Saunier Duval’s doctors will decide tomorrow if the rider stays there for his recovery or if he will be taken to Durango. Cañada has had a similar, but less serious heart problem in this year's Vuelta before, as well as when he rode for Mapei years ago.

Verbruggen reacts to Pound statements

The president of the International Cycling Union, Hein Verbruggen has replied to what World Anti-Doping Agency Chairman Dick Pound alleged in a press conference yesterday: that he himself provided the French journalist of L'Equipe with the necessary documents to reveal the claimed taking of EPO by Lance Armstrong in the 1999 Tour de France.

"The journalist came to the UCI wanting to write a positive story about Armstrong," Verbruggen told Dutch paper Telegraaf. "For this, he wanted insight in his medical dossier. Armstrong and the UCI agreed to this after long discussions. He couldn't find anything, as they were all blank. Armstrong never used any medications.

"The journalist then asked if he could have a copy for his story, and abused the code number on it. He was in possession of the other five already, but he didn't say anything about it, and L'Equipe appeared on the newsstands with six forms on it. That's how they draw their conclusions.

"I find it odd that these samples were used for a scientific purpose," Verbruggen added. "This can only be done with the agreement of the athlete, and it didn't happen."

The current president of the UCI also expressed his views on former German federation Sylvia Schenk's complaints over the legitimacy of Pat McQuaid's presidential candidacy.

"It's irritating that I have to use a lot of my energy in negative matters lately," Verbruggen continued. "Besides Pound, who loses his mind as soon as the press gets near, Schenk also spends her time accusing the UCI. Ironically, you can say that she cost the UCI more than Pat McQuaid, my designated successor, who gets paid for the work that he does for us. We have now hired a lawyer to go after Schenk as she went too far." Schenk's complaint argued that no member of the UCI Management Committee could at the same time be in a contractual situation with the UCI.

In an official declaration, the UCI today confirmed that Schenk is being sued by the UCI, its President and Pat McQuaid for defamation. Another complaint against Schenk was filed with the UCI Ethics Commission by eleven members of the Management Committee, on the grounds that she had breached the principle of confidentiality.

Meanwhile, the UCI Appeals Board has examined the complaint of Mr. Darshan Singh, one of the five candidates for presidency, who claimed that the changing of the electoral delegates of the Asian confederation was inadmissible. The candidates had been voted on in January 2005, and were about to be exchanged four months later, but a procedure mistake (the vote by correspondence does not comply with UCI statutes) has now made the second vote nigh. Therefore, the initial candidates will cast their votes in the UCI presidency elections in Madrid.

Italian World's team named

Alessandro Petacchi
Photo ©: Sirotti
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Italian selector Franco Ballerini has named a sprinter-heavy line up for the World Championships road race in Madrid. With Alessandro Petacchi and Paolo Bettini as team captains, it's clear that Ballerini wants to have the strongest possible line up if it comes down to a bunch sprint. 11 riders have been named, from which nine will be chosen as the final squadra azzurra: Alessandro Petacchi, Marco Velo, Matteo Tosatto, Lorenzo Bernucci (Fassa Bortolo), Paolo Bettini, Filippo Pozzato, Luca Paolini, Davide Bramati (Quick.Step), Daniele Bennati, Alessandro Ballan (Lampre), Giovanni Lombardi (CSC).

Marco Pinotti (Saunier Duval) and Marzio Bruseghin (Fassa Bortolo) will ride in the time trial.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Fotoreporter Sirotti

Rory Sutherland suspended

The Rabobank team has suspended Australian rider Rory Sutherland, after he failed a test for an illegal substance during the Deutschland Tour. According to the team, the drug was not related to blood doping or EPO, and Sutherland has asked for a B sample analysis.

Liquigas rosters for the weekend

Italian team Liquigas-Bianchi has announced its roster for the next-up races scheduled for the week-end. Stefano Garzelli, Italian champion Enrico Gasparotto and Franco Pellizotti will participate in both the G.P. di Misano and the G.P. Industria e Commercio di Prato, while Dario Cioni will take part only in the first race slated for Saturday.

At the G.P. Città di Misano on September 17, the following riders will line up: Stefano Garzelli, Michael Albasini, Kjell Carlström, Dario Cioni, Alberto Di Lorenzo, Enrico Gasparotto, Franco Pellizotti and Gianluca Sironi.

At the G.P. Industria e Commercio di Prato on Sunday, September 18, Stefano Garzelli, Michael Albasini, Eros Capecchi, Kjell Carlström, Alberto Di Lorenzo, Enrico Gasparotto, Franco Pellizotti and Gianluca Sironi will defend the colours of Liquigas-Bianchi.

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