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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Friday, November 22, 2019

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary | Our YouTube page
2019 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

Autumn wins you best by this, its mute appeal to sympathy for its decay. - Robert Browning

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Brandon Rivera joins Team INEOS

The team sent me this release:

Team INEOS are pleased to welcome Brandon Rivera to the team after the Colombian penned a two-year contract.

The 23 year old will step up to the WorldTour in 2020 and his all-round capabilities should make him a valuable and versatile member of the team.

Brandon Rivera

Brandon Rivera. Photo: Pablo Mazuera

On joining the team, Rivera, the current Pan American time trial champion, explained: “I feel very happy and fortunate to be joining the team – it’s a golden opportunity that I hope to take advantage of. Team INEOS is the perfect place to develop as a professional with great staff, coaches and sponsors. It’s a dream come true to be part of an incredible team with the best cyclists in the world.

“I grew up as a mountain biker but I love climbing, time trials and one-day races. I’m ready to help my teammates when they need it, but also prepared to make the most of any opportunities.

“My goals are clear: to learn as much as I can. I’m aware that it will be my first year in the WorldTour category and I will be racing with experienced riders, but I’m looking forward to it.”

Team INEOS Coach Xabier Artetxe feels that Rivera will have plenty to add to the team once he is settled into the demands of pro racing. He confirmed: “Brandon is versatile and he can become a really good support rider for the team. He’s a strong time trialist, he can climb well and he’s also fast when sprinting from a small group.

“He was racing in Europe two years ago but he didn’t have the best experience as he had a knee injury. But last year he came back to Colombia and he had a really good season. He’s stepped up a lot and I think he’s ready for the WorldTour.

“He’s really motivated to use this opportunity to develop himself and become a better rider. It will be important for him to learn how we work and get used to the WorldTour level. Then in the second year I’m sure he can turn into a strong support rider.

“When he was younger, he and Egan were the two best mountain bike riders in Colombia. They were the biggest rivals but they are really good friends. They spend a lot of time training together so Egan can really help him find his feet in the team.”

Now set to be teammates at the highest level of the sport, Rivera speaks fondly of Bernal and his friend’s support.

He added: “Egan and I are very good friends. We have known each other since the age of 10 when we started on the mountain bike in Zipaquirá. We were both full of dreams, and so to now be riding together again is incredible. I have to thank him very much for riding with me all these years and for always believing in me. In Colombia Egan is an example that dreams do come true and he’s an idol for children and adults.” 

NTT (formerly Dimension Data) confirms its continental cycling team roster

Here's the team's news piece:

NTT Pro Cycling is delighted to confirm our u23 continental feeder team in 2020. It will be the 5th successive season that our feeder team will base itself in Lucca, Italy, and will take on the competitive u23 European racing scene as the NTT Continental Cycling Team.

NTT Continental Cycling Team is the continuation of the former Team Dimension Data Continental Team, which is one of the most successful u23 feeder team’s in world cycling.

The 2019 season was a stand-out year for the team as they picked up 14 victories, racing in 7 different countries over a total of 84 race days. Samuele Battistella winning the u23 world championship road race title was undoubtedly the most significant result of the year. Having 5 riders graduate to the pro ranks in 2020 is testament to the success achieved in 2019.

An exciting and talented 2020 roster has been assembled, with a strong focus on developing the best u23 African talent on the continent.

From South Africa, Marc Pritzen will join the team for 2020 having just triumphed at the prestigious 94.7 Ride Joburg National Classic, Marc has been the number 1 rider in the Support SA talent Road Cycling series ranking in 2019. Connor Brown will start his 2nd season in our colours.

From Eritrea, Natnael Tesfazion will continue with us in 2020 and he will be joined by compatriot, Henok Mulueberhan Solomon. Negasi Abreha, who at just 18 years of age, was crowned the elite Ethiopian National Road Champion this year, will be joining our squad for 2020.

With our four u23 Italian riders from 2019 all turning pro in 2020, we will see an all new Italian quartet next season. Samuele Rubino, Leonardo Marchiori, Riccardo Bobbo and Mattia Guasco will don the blue NTT Continental Cycling Team colours next season.

Finally, we are delighted to confirm that for the first time, our team will have two Zwift Academy winners in our line-up. 2018 winner, Martin Lavric, will continue for his 2nd season with us while the 2019 Zwift Academy winner will be crowned at our December training camp, and fill the final spot on the NTT Continental Cycling Team roster.

2020 NTT Continental Cycling Team

Kevin Campbell – NTT Continental Team Manager:
We are very excited about continuing with our development program under our rebranded title partner NTT, in 2020. The 2019 cycling season was a successful year for our team, and we hope to build on these successes with a new roster of talented African and Italian riders. With 8 new riders in our line-up next year, they will have a lot to learn but we believe in their talent, and we look forward to helping them grow as athletes and as people.

Douglas Ryder – NTT Pro Cycling Team Principal:
This team is going from strength to strength, year on year and culminated in a world champion this year, in Samuele Battistella who now joins the NTT Pro Cycling Team in the World Tour. Each year we look to this team for riders to join our UCI World Team and each year 1 to 2 riders step up as neo-pros.

2020 is an incredible year for development teams of UCI World Teams. Riders registered with a development team may participate in UCI ProSeries or Class 1 events with the related UCI World Team at any time in the season. This will create opportunities for young riders that were not there before and make the NTT Pro Cycling team stronger. We are better together.

After EU investigation Taiwan steps up fight against fraud of rules of origin

Bike Europe sent me this update:

TAIPEI, Taiwan – Last Tuesday Taiwan’s parliament passed the review of a draft bill to step up the fight against fake origin labels and certificates of origin. The bill was initiated by Taiwan’s Minister of Economic Affairs after the government identified several companies that tagged Chinese products with fraudulent labels of origin in an attempt to avoid anti-dumping tariffs imposed by the EU on Chinese exports. This triggered the EU to launch an investigation into various Taiwan-made labelled products including e-bikes and bicycles.

The draft amendment to the Foreign Trade Act that was reviewed and passed aims to increase fines for using fraudulent certificates of origin. Currently these fines range from TWD 30,000 to TWD 300,000 (some 900 to 9,000 euro). According to the now passed amendment to the bill, exporters and importers who are found to have used fraudulent labels of origin or trade certificates would face a fine of TWD 60,000 to TWD 3 million (1,800 to 90,000 euro).

You can read the entire story here.

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