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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Thursday, August 11, 2016

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New opinions are always suspected, and usually opposed, without any other reason but because they are not already common. - John Locke

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A few days ago I mentioned in this column that I visited a great shop in Portland, West End Bikes, to meet up with an old friend. I also got the pleasure of meeting one of the owners of the store, Mark Ontiveros.

Mark told me a fun story that made it clear that he is a real bike guy. When his son Keelan was just three or four, he made the boy a little national champion's skin suit. Cute and fun, right? Indeed.

But... a decade later Keelan got the real thing when he became the Junior 13-14 national road champion! What are the odds?

Here's a fun before-and-after picture Mark sent me.

Keelan ontiveros

Top cycling teams to boycott team time trial world championships

This from the Associated Press:

DOHA, Qatar (AP) -- The world's best cycling teams have decided to boycott the team time trial event at the world championships in Qatar in October as a protest against the sport's global governing body.

The teams have been at odds with the International Cycling Union for months, and the recently released WorldTour calendar was the final blow. The schedule for next year has increased to 37 events on three continents and WorldTour teams are required to compete in all of them.

The teams also complained they must foot the bill for competing at the world championships. The team time trial is the only event that is not comprised of national teams.

The UCI said in a statement it was disappointed with the decision of the WorldTour teams.

Giant-Alpecin signs Lennard Kämna and Phil Bauhaus

The team sent me this news about Kämna:

Team Giant-Alpecin is delighted to announce that 19-year-old Lennard Kämna (GER) has signed a two-year contract to ride with the team's WorldTour program. The young German joining from Stölting Service Group, has huge potential and is already crowned World Champion in the juniors time trial. Kämna is recognized as one of the biggest talents of his generation with a strong ability in the time trials.

In his career to date, Kämna has already produced some impressive results and in the junior category he was among the world’s best. 2014 was a fantastic year for him as he won the German, European and World championships titles in the time trial. Kämna won the overall classification at Grand Prix Rüebliland and became second at Trofeo Carlsberg and Tour de Istra, he took stage wins in all three of them. In 2015, in his first year in the U23 category, he won the German U23 time trial championships and was third at the U23 World championships time trial. In addition, he won a stage at the Giro Ciclistico della Valle d'Aosta Mont Blanc and finished 10th at the U23 World championships road race. This year he won the youth classification at Circuit des Ardennes.

Kämna said: "I am glad about my contract at the German Team Giant-Alpecin. Based on the good talks that have taken place, I am looking forward to being part of this team. The professional structure and the teamwork philosophy have all been important factors in my final decision. On top of that, the contributions the team does to bring German cycling back on a high international level are very crucial."

Welcoming Kämna to the team's WorldTour program is an important next step integral to Team Giant-Alpecin’s aim to contribute to the development of German cycling, and to bring back Germany where it belongs in the world of international cycling.

As part of this objective, and parallel to signing promising German professional riders like Kämna to the team's WorldTour program, is the start of the team’s modern and prestigious Development Program from 2017. The approach the team has chosen is focused on grassroots development, supporting the growth of German cycling from its basis: inspiring young people to participate in the sport, and once advanced their careers to offer the very best of class an opportunity to enter into the team's Development Program. A major objective then is to grow and make the next step towards a place in the team's WorldTour Program and to develop these athletes into top cyclists. Therefore it is a structure to support a continuous and long-term flow of the most promising German riders entering into the WorldTour.

Coach Marc Reef (NED) commented: "Lennard is one of the biggest talents out there and we’re excited he has chosen to join us. He has proven to be an excellent time trialist but for sure we also recognize his GC qualities. Together with Lennard we are going to work hard in the next years to get the best out of his abilities and to see in which areas he will be at his best at WorldTour level.

"Traditionally we are very focused on young talents with the aim to develop them into world class riders, and for sure Lennard is one of them. With this very same objective we start our Development Program next year. We want to inspire and support talented riders from a young age, giving them the opportunity to learn that cycling is much more than just having strong legs. The aim is to nurture them to become professional athletes ready for their next step towards the WorldTour, using expert resources and scientific excellence from our WorldTour program to fulfill their full potential."

And here's the team's Phil Bauhaus release:

Team Giant-Alpecin is pleased to announce that Phil Bauhaus (GER) has signed a contract to race with the team for two years, until the end of 2018. The talented sprinter, currently riding for Bora-Argon 18, is next to Lennard Kämna (GER) the second German rider to strengthen the team's roster for next season.

Bauhaus’ top results include four professional wins. In 2014 he won two stages at Volta a Portugal em Bicicleta. Recently he won the closing stage of the Tour of Denmark and earlier this season he won the Tour d'Azerbaïdjan opener. He has also performed well in the Belgian classics with a 4th place in Nokere-Koerse last year and second place on stage 3a in the Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde this year, all achieved in bunch sprints.

Phil Bauhaus

Phil Bauhaus wins the first stage of this year's Azerbaijan tour

With the signature of Bauhaus, Team Giant-Alpecin continues to grow its German core. Over time the team has built up a considerable amount of experience and expertise in developing young sprinters. Bauhaus elaborates: "I am very proud to step up to the WorldTour with Team Giant-Alpecin. Their approach in developing young riders has been pretty successful and in terms of sprint preparation they have lots of knowledge and expertise, which were important factors in my decision. I am excited to play my role in supporting the leaders and in some races to go for my own chance, and I am very confident this step will help me reach a higher level."

Coach Marc Reef (NED) commented: "We’re happy to sign Phil, a young sprinter who has shown a lot of potential this season. Together with our coaches and our experts, step-by-step we want to develop him as a sprinter and he will be offered the time and space for that. Alongside our current sprinters Nikias [Arndt] and Max [Walscheid], these three represent a strong generation of up-and-coming German sprinters.

"Next to the signing of Lennard [Kämna] we are pleased to support German talent. From next season onwards these possibilities will be expanded with our modern Development Program, as the best of class talented German and international riders are being signed to join that program. This is part of the team's bigger development pyramid with the German Talent Days as an entrance and the team's new and high-end Development Program as the gateway to its WorldTour Program as the point on the horizon."

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