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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Sunday, December 27, 2015

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary

It's paradoxical, that the idea of living a long life appeals to everyone, but the idea of getting old doesn't appeal to anyone. - Andy Rooney

UCI has new World Tour ranking system

This was posted on the UCI site:

The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) is pleased to announce the launch of a new UCI World Ranking (for men’s professional road cycling, reflecting a similar ranking in place already for women’s professional road cycling).

The UCI World Ranking – individual and nations – will be published in parallel with the UCI WorldTour Ranking (individual, teams and nations).

The new UCI World Ranking will be published once a week, each Monday, from January 11th 2016. It will take into account the results of the 52 previous weeks (a rolling system, similar to that of the ATP in tennis). This means it will only come fully into effect one year after its introduction. Its calculation will not be based on a specific series, as is the case with the UCI WorldTour Ranking, but on the entire UCI International Road Calendar (UCI WorldTour, UCI Continental Circuits, UCI World Championships, National and Continental Championships, Olympic Games and Continental Games).

All riders who mark points in the races concerned will be part of the UCI World Ranking, including riders who are not members of UCI WorldTeams.

Alejandro Valverde

Alejandro Valverde closed out the 2015 season as the World Tour #1 rider

The new UCI World Ranking was the subject of a thorough consultation process which took into account the interests and wishes of riders, teams, organisers and National Federations as well as media and fans. In addition, it reflects the most recent discussions of the UCI Road Commission and Professional Cycling Council.

These modifications will not affect the UCI Continental Rankings, which will remain just as important on the continents and will continue to be calculated. On the other hand, these will now be published once a week and, like the UCI World Ranking, will take into account the 52 previous weeks according to a “rolling” system. Also new: riders from UCI WorldTeams will now feature in the UCI Continental Rankings.

Vittoria hopes to revolutionize bike tires with Graphene

This came from Bike-Eu:

LOMAZZO, Italy – The claims are big. It’s said to be magical, revolutionary, and even comparable to the invention of plastic. We’re talking about graphene. The fact that the two scientists who invented it were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2010 indicates there’s some substance to the hype. The same goes for the €1 billion subsidy the EU has available for developing applications. Graphene has now arrived in the bike industry.

How it has arrived was made clear last October during a visit to high end tyre maker Vittoria and to Directa Plus; the company that in June 2014 opened “The graphene factory”, the largest European industrial production unit for pristine graphene nanoplatelets. Here it was presented what integrating graphene into tyres and composite material for carbon wheelsets brings Vittoria. And it’s possible other companies in the bike industry will be integrating graphene, as it brings unprecedented features to carbon frames, other composite products, textiles, as well as electric (e-bike) parts – because graphene is also a superconductor.

Integrating graphene into Vittoria’s tyre compounds or composite materials like carbon fiber, textiles and other products is what it is all about. It’s definitely not like adding powder or carbon black to tyre compounds. It is in fact coming on top of carbon black and the Directa Plus and Vittoria people now working for years with graphene say, “Unique is that graphene has the ability to bond on atoms level with other materials. With this dissipation graphene is able to manipulate the shape of particles in various materials.”

It took Directa Plus and Vittoria about 4 years to get that dissipation process well established in 4C (4 compound) tyres. And in particular in such a way that the two companies now say that they changed the recipe for making tyres. It results in what Vittoria calls a game-changer as their tyres are now intelligent.
The unlocking of the properties of graphene in combination with rubber is resulting in compounds that become harder and softer, depending on the needs of the rider. Vittoria claims, “If the tyre is rolling straight, the rubber is at its hardest and offers low rolling resistance. If the rider brakes, accelerates or corners, the compounds soften and offer significantly more grip.”

Additionally, Vittoria says it has achieved major improvements in durability and puncture resistance for its graphene-enhanced range, which is called “Intelligent Tire System (IT’S)”.

Vittoria’s new Corsa Speed (Tubeless ready) with graphene has been measured at 40% less rolling resistance compared to the same product without graphene. According to Vittoria, elaborate independent testing clearly proves it is the fastest tyre in the world.

There's more to the story here.

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