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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, October 5, 2022

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2021 Tour de France | 2022 Giro d'Italia

Adults are obsolete children. - Dr. Seuss


Cycling's 50 Craziest Stories

Les Woodland's book Cycling’s 50 Craziest Stories is available in print, Kindle eBook & audiobook versions. To get your copy, just click on the Amazon link on the right.

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Binche-Chimay-Binche team reports

We posted the report from winner Christophe Laporte's Team Jumbo-Visma with the results.

Here's the report from World Champion Remco Evenepoel's Team Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl:

Tuesday was a day of celebration. For Remco Evenepoel, who got to wear the rainbow jersey in a race for the first time since conquering it more than a week ago in Australia, for Zdenek Stybar – whose time with the Wolfpack came to a conclusion after twelve beautiful years – but also for Iljo Keisse, who made another step towards retirement the moment he arrived at the finish of Binche-Chimay-Binche, hand in hand with Evenepoel.

Remco Evenepoel & Iljo Keisse cross the line together. Photo: Luc Claessen/Getty Images

Belgium’s first World Champion in a decade was keen on postponing his holiday to compete one more time alongside Iljo, the man who guided him in the peloton ever since turning pro in 2019, but the 22-year-old Belgian didn’t stop at this and even spiced up the race with some of his trademark long-range attacks that split the peloton before eventually relenting and riding together with Keisse the last twenty kilometers of the race.

“He had a big impact on my career and taught me a lot of important things, for which I will be forever grateful. We were roommates many times in these seasons and it’s been a real pleasure to be again on the team with him before he retires”, said Remco at the finish. “It was beautiful also to see so many fans before, during and after the race. The people have been fantastic since I returned from Australia and it gave me goosebumps to see them come in huge numbers and give me such a warm and beautiful welcome today, and I thank them for that.”

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Tre Valli Varesine team reports

We posted the report from winner Tadej Pogacar's UAE team Emirates with the results.

Here's the report from third-place Sergio Higuita's Team Bora-hansgrohe:

The hilly terrain of today's 194 km long course made the race a matter for those riders with strong climbing legs, with a demanding circuit around Varese commencing after only 40 kilometres. The break didn't stand a chance today, with riders gradually dropping back from the front one after the other until they were all ultimately reeled back in by 50km remaining. After some unsuccessful attacks over the last kilometres, the reduced field containing Sergio Higuita and Aleks Vlasov fought it out amongst themselves for the victory. In a sprint from a group of around 25 riders, Sergio raced to a strong second place, with the win going to Tadej Pogačar.

This one was close. Sirotti photo

"I thought I'd be able to get a good result today. Although a lot of riders in the peloton are tired at the end of the season, I'm still motivated, which is important. And the rest of the team is also in a similar frame of mind. We didn't have any super results so far at these Italian races, so we really wanted to improve today. I knew I had to start my sprint from a bit further out, because in previous editions of the race, I went too late. Aleks and I worked well together and he brought me to a good position in the final kilometre. I had pretty good legs, and I think overall I did a good sprint. We're happy with a podium place, and I'm especially pleased to be able to share the podium with such distinguished riders." - Sergio Higuita

"We took a strong second place today with Sergio. I have to also say that the spirit in the team is still very good, the guys are all motivated to help each other, and Aleks was right up there, which bodes well for Lombardia. UAE Emirates and Movistar took control of the race so that it was certain that the break would be brought back in time. It all came down to the final two laps with the steep climb, where Sergio and Aleks were able to ride well. They helped each other really well, with Aleks bringing Sergio into a good position in the final 500 metres. It's good to see the team riding well again, with full focus on the next races, in particular Il Lombardia this weekend." - Enrico Gasparotto, Sports Director


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Team Bahrain Victorious to race Gran Piemonte & Il Lombardia

Here's the team's update:

A few races remain on the Bahrain Victorious calendar before the curtain comes down on the 2022 season. The team will participate in two prestigious Italian races this week: Gran Piemonte, taking place on Thursday, 6 October and the last Classic Monument of this year, Il Lombardia, next Saturday, 8 October.

Both races will see the same lineup competing but with different strategies, as the two race courses feature differing characteristics.

The 106th edition of Gran Piemonte, 198km from Omegna to Beinasco, nearby Turin, has a partly hilly route that will suit both sprinters and finisseurs. Starting from the lake of Orta, the peloton will face a first 38km of ups and downs, followed by a mostly flat route until the final 70km. At km 130 will come the most demanding section of the day: il Pilonetto climb, on the famous Collina di Superga, a 10km length ascent at 4.2%. Then the last short climb of the day, at 47 km to go, finished with a flat road for the sprinters to chase back if dropped on the climbs.

“Seeing this course, it’s more a sprinter race”, Bahrain Victorious Sports Director Roman Kreuziger comments. “But it can be open to different opportunities, and we have a strong squad that mainly rode together a large part of the season. The key climb of the day can be harsh for the pure sprinters, but there can be plenty of time to get back. We don’t have any pure sprinters in our lineup, so we need to take advantage of other opportunities to turn the race in our favour. Our leader will be Matej Mohorič, who is getting back in good shape and has just won the CRO Race GC. The final a bit technical can suit him well, and everyone knows how he can be surprising”.

The Gran Piemonte will be the warm-up ahead of Il Lombardia, which takes place two days after.

The “Classic of Dead Leaves” will see this year the 253km route unfolding from Bergamo to Como, respecting the alternation between the two cities as start and finish locations. The 116th edition of the last Monument of 2022 will feature several climbs after the beginning when the riders hit the ascents in the Prealps around Bergamo. But the decisive part of the race is expected to be the last explosive 60km with the traditional climb of Madonna del Ghisallo (with gradients up to 14%) and a series of ascents in the final 22km circuit: San Fermo della Battaglia, Civiglio and a second final climb on San Fermo before descending to Como lakefront and crossing the traditional finish.

Mikel Landa (shown finishing 2022 Giro stage 19) will ride Il Lombardia. Sirotti photo

Leading Bahrain Victorious is Mikel Landa, who will be back to racing to Gran Piemonte after La Vuelta. “Mikel has worked well in the past few weeks, and he will use the Classic race on Thursday to warm up ahead of his tenth appearance on Il Lombardia”, Bahrain Victorious Sports Director Alberto Volpi explains. “We aim to take a podium result. Therefore we will be focused as if it were the first Monument of the season, not the conclusive one. We want to race it aggressively. All the guys participating in this race are in great shape. Damiano Caruso showed his strong legs recently at CRO Race, where he supported the leaders. On Saturday, he will be our joker, while Matej Mohorič will have the role of road captain. His help will be crucial on a climb like the Ghisallo, as well as the help that reliable riders like Gino Mäder and Hermann Pernsteiner will give. Wout Poels will be road captain at Gran Piemonte, his first race after the World Championships. He has ridden six times this race so far, so his experience will be helpful. To round up our lineup, there will be a young guy at his debut in a Monument: Edoardo Zambanini. We can say he is our surprise of this season. We appreciated his way of riding and supporting the captain, and at La Vuelta, he proved he could take his responsibility too. Despite his young age, he’s got the talent to do well on such a demanding course, to offer great support to our leader”.


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Bottecchia headquarters damaged in fire

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News posted this report:

CAVARZERE, Italy (BRAIN) — The Bottecchia bicycle company and local media are reporting that a large fire destroyed part of Bottecchia's production headquarters here on Sunday. On social media, the company said no employees were hurt and the extent of damage is still unknown.

"On Sunday, September 25, we experienced one of the worst pages of our history. What happened at our headquarters in Cavarzere is an unprecedented event," the company said on its Facebook page. "We are already reorganizing to start again as soon as possible. We know a lot of you are waiting for deliveries. We ask for your patience and understanding during this difficult time. We will do our best to keep you updated on the restart timings as soon as possible."

You can read the entire story here.

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