Latest Cycling News, September 29, 2008
Edited by Bjorn Haake
Dean stuck in group of favourites
Julian Dean led the New Zealanders home in 35th place at the 260km men's elite road race at the UCI World Championships in Italy. Dean stayed with the big favourites of the race, including Paolo Bettini of Italy, the Spanish duo of Oscar Freire and Alejandro Valverde, as well as Belgium's Tom Boonen. Unfortunately for Dean, it was the group that didn't contend for the victory in the end.
Dean was intentionally staying with the favourites. Even BikeNZ national road coach Jacques Landry was surprised at the tactics of the big names. "Julian [Dean] decided wisely that he needed to mark the key riders Bettini and Freire but when the Italian lieutenants went up the road, the Spanish and Belgian teams did not chase them down," Landry said.
Dean was certainly hoping for a sprint of a bigger group in which he could be a factor. "It was a bit disappointing for Julian because he rode really well and had the legs today. He had to sit and wait but strangely for a big race like this, they let the lesser lights take the honours.
"When the final break came Spain and Belgium only had one rider each in the break and no-one else tried to ride it down. Had they done so, then it would have given Julian the chance to sprint it out."
In the end Dean had to settle to stay with the group of Bettini, with the latter celebrating Ballan's win down the finishing straight. "Julian's finishing position won't reflect his really good race. It was certainly quite a weird world championship, and the first for quite some years that the big names of the sport did not feature."
Fellow New Zealand Glen Chadwick dropped out after he lost time with a puncture. "As a small nation we were car number 28 in the support and it took quite a while for us to get to Glen. From that point he managed to finally rejoin but it was at the bottom of the climb when the heat finally went on at the front so he was on a hiding to nothing."
Other big names in that group that finished almost five minutes including defending world champion and favourite Paolo Bettini of Italy, three time winner Oscar Freire (Spain), Tom Boonen (Belgium) and Alejandro Valverde (Spain).
CONI recommends 20 months for Riccò
The Italian anti-doping prosecutor has recommended a 20-month suspension for Riccardo Riccò. CONI, the Italian International Olympic Committee, is seeking the punishment after Riccò tested positive for a new erythropoeitin (EPO) drug, Mircera, during the 2008 Tour de France.
Riccò's lawyer, Alessandro Sivelli, will attend a hearing on October 2 to give his side of the story.
Mircera, or Continuous Erythropoeitin Receptor Activator (CERA), was thought to be undetectable in urine, but the French anti-doping agency (AFLD) had clandestinely developed a test for it prior to the Tour de France. Riccò had been targeted for additional testing after his pre-Tour blood values showed abnormal values.
The AFLD is examining the blood of other riders from this year's Tour de France who showed suspicious results on the urine test for CERA, but could not be declared positive.
Gerdemann to stay with Columbia?
Linus Gerdemann may well be riding for Team Columbia again next year. There had been discussions with Team Milram that would let him break his contract and join the German team, but apparently the talks have not come to a conclusion. Gerdemann's contract with Columbia runs through 2009.
"I assume that he will ride for us next year," Columbia team manager Bob Stapleton told the sid news agency. "It depends on Milram as to whether there will be more talks. There is always the chance for a transfer."
The transfer is said to involve the buying out of Gerdemann's contract, and apparently the sum involved is the breaking point in the negotiations.(SW)
Joachim's oxygen tent sparked raid
The Italian police raid on the hotel of the Luxembourg team Friday night was not related to stories associating Fränk Schleck to Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes, but had to do with Benoit Joachim. On his antidoping control, Joachim had indicated that he slept in an oxygen tent, which is not allowed in Italy, according to RTL Luxembourg and sportweek.nl.
It was not immediately clear whether the Astana rider had the tent with him at the World Championships or not. However, the sid press agency claimed that the police removed "several bags" of material from the team's hotel. Twenty policemen were said to be involved in the raid, which lasted eight hours.(SW)
Elijzen with Dekker to Lotto
Michiel Elijzen is joining Team Silence-Lotto, along with his friend Thomas Dekker.
The 26 year-old Dutch rider rode for the Rabobank Continental team from 2002 to 2005 before signing with Cofidis for two years. He returned to Rabobank this season. In 2007 he won the prologue of the Eneco Tour and was second in the national time trial championships.(SW)
Escuredo, Marvulli and Berthon win in Barcelona
By Antonio J. Salmerón
The second edition of the Trofeo Ciutat de Barcelona de ciclismo took place on the Olympic velodrome over the weekend. Three riders put their stamp on the track event. José Antonio Escuredo, Franco Marvulli and Laurie Berthon were the fastest in the omniums of the sprint, the endurance races and the female category, respectively.
In the sprints category, Escuredo won the sprint and keirin ahead of Russian Ilya Okunev hometown hero Itmar Esteban. Escuredo and Esteban, together with Alfred Moreno, also took the teams sprint.
Swiss rider Marvulli took the points race in spectacular fashion, besting Bouygues Telecom professional Damien Gaudin. Argentinean Mauricio Muller finished third.
The omnium in the women's category was won by Laurie Berthon of France, ahead of Switzerland's Andrea Wolfer and Spaniard Helena Casas. Berthon was better in the endurance races, while Casas gained valuable UCI points in the sprints competition.
With over 100 racers from ten different nations, the event in the velodrome of Horta was a full success. The weather was cooperative and some of the exhibit events also contributed to a festive atmosphere. Juanjo Méndez, double medal winner at the Paralympics as well as Olympic medalists Toni Tauler and Alexey Markov enhanced the programme.
Vaugrenard wins Tour du Poitou
Benoît Vaugrenard of Française des Jeux won the 22nd Tour du Poitou Charentes et de la Vienne. In the final stage Vaugrenard stayed in the bunch to finish with the same time as his main rival, Agritubel's Kevin Ista.
Vaugrenard laid the foundation in stage 4, where he finished seventh in the 23-kilometre time trial.
Garmin Chipotle's Tom Danielson finished the time trial in 13th, 51 seconds behind the winner. He ended the stage race in 15th, 1'08 back.
Victory for Sarah Düster
Sarah Düster from the Cervélo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team dominated the road race in Warmisried, Germany, yesterday. It was Düster's first victory in the 2008 season.
The race on the 9.2-kilometre course, which had to be completed five times, was very fast from the start. The hilly area between Warmisried and Mindelheim offered a challenging terrain. Düster escaped after the first lap and continued solo on the front. Despite the windy weather, she was able to hold her advantage until the end and claimed victory ahead of compatriot's Denise Zuckermantel and Stephanie Degle.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Cervélo-Lifeforce
Tour de l'est goes to Teguimaha
Sadrack Teguimaha of Cameroon has won the 22nd Tour de l'est international, a stage race in the Ivory Coast. The 11 stages were held between September 19 and 28. The total race distance was 890 kilometres.
The final stage, a 109.5-kilometre race in Abidjan, was won by Damien Tekou. Teguimaha took the overall with a time of 24h47:59.
34 riders of four countries (Cameroon, Burkina Faso, Benin and the Ivory Coast) started the race. 29 racers arrived at the finish of the final stage.
Auckland schools dominate last day of Perry Foundation cycling
After being edged out in the team time trial and the road race, Auckland Grammar flexed their muscles on the final day of the Perry Foundation national secondary school cycling championships in Feilding.
Alexander Ray, better known to his cycling friends as the "Grammar Hammer", took out the under-20 points race with an emphatic display around the Manfeild Autocourse.
Ray won three of the seven sprints in the 14-lap, 42km race to manage 23 points, and had the title in his grasp before the final sprint. He finished clear of school-mate and fellow Pro-Velo rider Aaron Gate, who won the final two sprints to finish with 15 points with Dunstan High School's Patrick Williamson third.
Chloe Harding-Sheath (Massey High, Auckland) took out the girls under 20 race and added her name to an impressive list of former champions that includes Sarah Ulmer, Catherine Cheatley and Suzy Pryde. She finished with 13 points and also had the title decided before the final sprint in the 24km race.
Auckland Grammar's George Scott won the opening three sprints to dominate the under-17 boys title from James Northey (Westlake) while Daniel Cross edged out his Westlake mate Ryan Lowther-Smith by one point in the under-16s.
Alex Stancliffe made it a double by adding the points race to his win in the road race, scoring 15 points in the under-15 race, with fellow Kristin College team-mate Hardy Mitchel runner-up, as he was yesterday.
The under-14 honours went to Joel MacManus (Garin College, Nelson) when he won all three sprints to finish ahead of Sean Kirby (Sacred Heart, Auckland) while Rainier Jackson (St Kentigern) edged out Callum Ross (Whangaparaoa) on countback in the year 7-8.
Grace Mitchell (Diocesan Auckland) was too strong for Henrietta Mitchell (Baradene) in the under-17 girls while Danyela Van Der Sande (St Cuthberts) won the under-16 title by just one point from Alina Varoy (St Kentigern).
The under-15 honours went to Sophie Williamson (Dunstan College), following her older brother Patrick on to the podium today. She won with 11 points from Racquel Sheat (Whangaparaoa) with nine.
Devon Hiley (St Cutherbert) won the under-14 contest by one point from Robin Hacker-Cary (Waikato Diocesan) and Amelia Retter (Auckland Diocesan) beat off the challenges in the year 7-8 race.
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