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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, December 14, 2022

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2022 Tour de France | 2022 Giro d'Italia

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Team Astana Qazaqstan discharges Miguel Angel Lopez

Here is the team’s statement:

Astana Qazaqstan Team discovered new elements showing Miguel Angel Lopez’ probable connection with Dr Marcos Maynar. Accordingly, the team had no other solution than to end the contract between team and rider, based on breaches of said contract and internal team rules, with immediate effect.

To preserve the rights of the team and the rider no further comments will be made.

Miguel Angel Lopez wins stage four of the 2022 Alps Tour. Sirotti photo

Lopez’s response:

“The rider hereby states that he sees no reason for the choice of Astana Qazaqstan , and that there are no new facts that justify such a decision. There are no new facts that were not yet known or reported before November 2022.

“The rider rejects all allegations that could damage his name and honor as a cycling professional. He points out that he has never tested positive for drugs for doping, and that he has never been investigated by any authority.

“Mr. Miguel Angel Lopez hereby informs that he will defend himself before the corresponding courts, in a case that he considers a clear case of wrongful termination of contract without due cause.”

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Pierre Rolland retires

With the collapse of Pierre Rolland’s Team B&B Hotels, Rolland has decided to hang up the chamois. The 36-year old racer did want to race one more year, but rather than find another place on a team at this late juncture, he announced that he would retire.

Pierre Rolland after stage four of the 2022 Dauphiné. Sirotti photo

An excellent climber, in 2022 he still had the legs to win the mountains classification of the Critérium du Dauphiné, which he has also won way back in 2010.

In 2011 he won the Best Young Rider classification of the Tour de France.

Pierre Rolland in the white jersey of the Best Young Rider time trialing in stage 20 of the 2011 Tour de France. Sirotti photo

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Vittoria Tires changes hands to new private equity investor

Bike Europe posted this news:

BREMBATE, Italy - Private equity investors Telemos Capital have signed a binding agreement to acquire a majority stake in Italian tyre manufacturer, Vittoria. Together with Wise Equity, Telemos aims to accelerate the growth of the company on a global scale. The transaction is expected to close in early 2023.
It was only in July 2020 that Wise Equity was presented as the new owner of Vittoria following the departure of Rudie Campagne. Telemos will now invest alongside Vittoria’s senior management team and Wise Equity, “to build on the company’s position in the performance tyre market.”

Substantial business growth
Vittoria manufactures performance bicycle tyres, known for its graphene-enhanced compounds and advanced cotton and nylon casings. With factories in Thailand and The Netherlands, the manufacturer sells through subsidiaries in Asia, Europe, and North America.

According to the company statement the business has grown substantially since Wise’s investment in 2020. Today the Vittoria Group is led by Chairman and CEO Stijn Vriends, who together with the current senior management team, will significantly re-invest and is committed to continue to drive the company’s ‘The Ride Ahead’ strategy. “The support of Wise Equity has been fantastic over the last years and we are very pleased that Telemos – with all its relevant experience in growing global brands – is now joining us on the ride,” said Stijn Vriends, Chairman & CEO of Vittoria.

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International expansion plans for Vittoria
With the backing of Telemos, Vittoria will accelerate its plans for international expansion and further development of its products, services and channels. Vittoria will continue to invest in sustainability, innovation and research & development. Recently the company inaugurated Vittoria Park, a cycling innovation and experience venue next to its headquarters near Milan.

Telemos Capital, which invests in private European businesses, is funded by family capital. The investors states that it “acquires majority stakes in businesses with the potential for sustainable growth through international expansion, add-on acquisitions or operational improvements.” Other investments in the consumer sector currently include Lovehoney Group and Mammut Sports Group.

You can read the entire story here.

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