Bicycle Racing News and Opinion
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Sunday, September 21, 2014
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World Road Championships Begin Sunday, Sept 21
Lampre Merida on the team time trial:
The technical staff of Lampre-Merida selected the 6 riders that will try to honor the world championship team time trial. Sport director Matxin will count on Winner Anacona, Mattia Cattaneo, Roberto Ferrari, Nelson Oliveira, Josè Serpa Perez and Rafael Valls.
The blue-fuchsia-green six men will represent four countries: Italy, Colombia, Portugal and Spain.
The team time trial is scheduled for Sunday 21 September on a 57.1 km course in Ponferrada: Lampre's target is to do better than the 17th place in Florence 2013.
Lampre-Merida riding a team time trial. Photo ©Bettini
Tinkoff-Saxo on the Team Time Trial:
The final preparations are being effectuated before the World Championships Team Time Trial in Ponferrada. Tinkoff-Saxo has sent six riders to Spain to compete in the only non-national team based event during the championship. Sunday at precisely 15:36, Rogers, Bennati, Valgren, Boaro, Roche and Juul-Jensen will roll down the start ramp onto the 57.1-kilometer route to compete for the win in, what Michael Rogers calls, the pinnacle of teamwork in cycling.
"This is a special race for the six of us, for Bjarne, who has always focused a lot on the TTT, and basically for the entire team. This is teamwork exemplified. As a result, we want to do a good job here. There are quite a few teams with high ambitions that have prepared carefully for this event, but looking at our squad I see six strong riders with big engines in race shape and many kilometers in the legs”, says Michael Rogers after having inspected the parcours together with his teammates.
Michael Rogers is expected to be the pivotal point of the team during the TTT. With three World Championships Time Trial gold medals under his belt he’s capable of directing the team’s effort on the long route.
“It’s a fast circuit and the final 30 kilometers are challenging. We need to find our rhythm, not start too fast and finish off strongly on the final and most difficult part of the route. On behalf of the team, I can say that we are excited and ready to give our best. It will of course require a great effort to get on the podium, but knowing that I’m doing this together with five of my close teammates really motivates me”, adds Michael Rogers.
Tinkoff-Saxo team time trialing at the 2014 Giro d'Italia. Photo © Sirotti
Lotto-Belisol's plans for the Worlds:
The World Championships cycling in Ponferrada, in the Spanish north-western region Castilla y León, will start on Sunday with the team time trials. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday the national teams will compete in the individual time trial and as from Friday the road races take place. Several Lotto Belisol riders, men elite and U23, are part of the national selections. An overview:
Elite men’s road race: Jelle Vanendert and Tim Wellens will race the road race for the Belgian team on Sunday 28th of September. Frenchman Tony Gallopin defends the colours of his country. Adam Hansen and Greg Henderson, the two riders from Down Under, are respectively lined up for Australia and New-Zealand. André Greipel is in the pre-selection for Germany.
The elite men’s road race is 254.8 kilometres long and consists of fourteen laps of 18.2 kilometres. Unlike the previous World Championships there will only be raced on the local circuit. At the end the riders will have covered 4284 altitude metres. In the local lap lie two hills: the Alto de Montearenas (5 km and 3.5% average) and the Alto de Compostilla (1.1 km and 6% average). The last two kilometres of the course are flat.
U23 men’s road race: The road race for the U23 riders takes place two days before the elite men, on the same course. They will have to cover ten laps, which means 3060 altitude metres. Two riders of the Lotto Belisol U23 team have been selected for Belgium: Tiesj Benoot and Kenneth Van Rooy. Daniel McLay will represent Great-Britain.
Time trial: Also the time trial medals will be handed out next week. Belgian riders Frederik Frison and Ruben Pols race the U23 time trial on Monday. It’s 36.15 kilometres long. On Wednesday the elite men have a race against the clock of 47.10 kilometres. Vegard Breen is a member of the Norwegian delegation.
Lotto Belisol wishes all its riders the best of luck in Ponferrada!
Monday 22nd of September – Individual time trial men U23
Belgium: Frederik Frison and Ruben Pols
Wednesday 24th of September – Individual time trial elite men
Norway: Vegard Breen
Friday 26th of September – Road race men U23
Belgium: Tiesj Benoot and Kenneth Van Rooy, Great-Britain: Dan McLay
Sunday 28th of September – Road race elite men
Australia: Adam Hansen, Belgium: Jelle Vanendert and Tim Wellens, France: Tony Gallopin, New-Zealand: Greg Henderson, Germany: André Greipel?
Will André Greipel ride the road race? Photo ©Sirotti
Tinkoff-Saxo Extends Petrov Contract
This just came in from Tinkoff-Saxo:
Tinkoff-Saxo is pleased to announce that the team has extended the contract with Evgeny Petrov. The 36-year old Russian has inked a one-year deal keeping him on the team ahead of the ambitious 2015 season. Team Owner Oleg Tinkov looks forward to having Petrov in the squad again next year.
“It’s a special pleasure for me to hear that Bjarne has decided to extend the contract with Evgeny. We both come from the same little Siberian city and we had the same coach when we were juniors. I believe Evgeny will continue to be strong next year, he’s very experienced and professional in his approach to training and racing and his victory on the queen stage of Tour of Austria this year illustrated it”, commented Oleg Tinkov.
Evgeny Petrov turned pro in 2001 for Mapei and had two seasons on Oleg Tinkov’s Tinkoff Credit Systems in 2007 and 2008. Petrov has been a part of Tinkoff-Saxo since 2013 and has offered great support to the captains in several Grand Tours as well as achieved personal results – the most noticeable being a solo win on the tough 6th stage of this year’s Tour of Austria.
“I’m very happy about staying with Tinkoff-Saxo. It’s like a family and we have a very strong camaraderie in the team. For me it has been a good year with personal success and a lot of hard work for the captains. We’re a team with big goals and that motivates me a lot”, said Evgeny Petrov after signing the new contract.
Tinkoff-Saxo has announced that the team will further increase the level of ambitions for 2015 by signing several big riders, including Peter Sagan. Petrov says that he looks forward to next season and riding with his new teammates.
“For me, it’s great to get one more year with Oleg and Bjarne. They want this team to be the best in the world and next year I will support captains like Contador, Majka and Sagan the best I can. We will have a team that is capable of going for the win in both Grand Tours and Classics and I look forward to being part of that”, added Petrov.
BMC Rider Wins Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem and Thor Hushovd Retires
This came from BMC:
BMC Racing Team's Greg Van Avermaet won Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem Saturday as teammate and former world road champion Thor Hushovd competed in his final race to close a 15-year professional career.
Van Avermaet earned his second win in four days by surviving from what was a 10-man breakaway that formed 20 kilometers into the 196.6-km race in Belgium. The escapees enjoyed a nearly six-minute advantage before a small chase group threatened to make the catch inside the final kilometers.
Van Avermaet out-sprinted four other survivors from the original breakaway to win ahead of Tosh van der Sande (Lotto-Belisol) and Michal Golas (Omega Pharma-Quick Step). The chase group arrived 11 seconds later and the peloton, with Hushovd, was 57 seconds back. Van Avermaet said he was only looking for a good day of training following his victory Wednesday at Grand Prix de Wallonie. "We just gave it all to stay in front to the finish and that is what happened," Van Avermaet said. "It was a goal to do some good preparation for the worlds, so for me it went perfectly." The victory was Van Avermaet's third of the year and the BMC Racing Team's 27th on the season.
Sport Director Max Sciandri said the BMC Racing Team was ready for every scenario. "We knew we could finish it off well with Thor if it came to a sprint, but we wanted the other guys to be focused on breakaways," he said. "And Greg finished it off in a great way."
Hushovd placed 48th in his last race and received congratulatory hugs from his teammates. "It is a strange feeling and it is kind of sad in one way," he said. "There is a lot of emotion. But I am really in a good place and proud of my career. It has been a great 15 years." Hushovd's first win as a professional came on April 29, 2000, when he won the first of three straight stages of the Ringerike Grand Prix in his home country of Norway. His last win came on Aug. 11, 2013 when he took the overall title (as well as the final stage) of the Arctic Race of Norway for two of his BMC Racing Team-high nine wins on the year. In between, he won nearly 100 races, including a world title on the road (2010), stages of all three grand tours, two points classification titles at the Tour de France (2005 and 2009) and three Norwegian national road (2004, 2010 and 2013) and time trial (2002, 2004 and 2005) titles. "Thor will be a great inspiration for younger generations and it is great he finished with the BMC Racing Team," Sciandri said. "We hope all the best for him."
Thor Hushovd winning the 2010 World Road Championship. Photo ©Sirotti
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