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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Monday, October 16, 2023

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2023 Tour de France | 2023 Giro d'Italia

It costs a lot of money to look this cheap. - Dolly Parton

Tour de France: 2020

Bill & Carol McGann's book The Story of the Tour de France, 2020: The Tour During Covid-19, Better Late Than Never is available in both Kindle eBook and Audiobook versions. To get your copy, just click on the Amazon link on the right.

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Japan Cup team reports

We posted the report from winner Rui Costa's Team Intermarché-Circus Wanty with the results.

Here's the report from Julian Alaphilippe's Team Soudal Quick-Step:

Soudal Quick-Step put on an offensive display at the Japan Cup, the team’s penultimate outing of the season, which ran over 13 laps (instead of the planned 16) of a hard circuit that featured the Mt. Kogashi climb. The demanding parcours, taking in some 3000 vertical meters, and the heavy rain made for an attritional race, but that didn’t stop Julian Alaphilippe from going early on the attack.

The double World Champion, making his first appearance in Japan since turning pro, took off with around 110 kilometers until the finish, won two of the day’s KOM prizes and carved out a nice 1:20 advantage, which allowed him to remain in the lead until 60 kilometers to go, when he was joined by a select group containing teammates James Knox, Fausto Masnada and Ilan Van Wilder. Soon after, more attacks came on the 2.1km ascent, whittling down the small peloton to around a dozen riders with four laps remaining.

The same Alaphilippe remained incredibly active, and after a brief acceleration of James Knox who tried to apply pressure on the others, the Frenchman rode clear again, this time on the descent, putting a couple of seconds between him and the chasers. Despite his admirable efforts, Julian was reeled in with 25 kilometers left of the race, but even then, he continued to be prominent, working for Masnada, who had come here after a solid outing in the Italian one-day races.

Rui Costa wins the 2023 Japan Cup.

The 29-year-old from Bergamo gave his best in the finale of this rain-soaked race and concluded the Japan Cup, won by Rui Costa (Intermarche-Circus-Wanty), as the highest-ranked Soudal Quick-Step rider, in 14th place.

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Veneto Classic team reports

We posted the report from winner Davide Formolo's UAE Emirates with the results.

Here's the report from third-place Filippo Zana's Team Jayco-AlUla:

Italian Filippo Zana concluded his 2023 season with a courageous and attacking ride to third place in the Veneto Classic.

The 24-year-old animated the race and mastered the slick gravel roads as he launched a stinging move on the penultimate climb of the day. The Giro d’Italia stage winner opened up a gap on the reduced peloton on the ascent before being joined by the UAE Team Emirates duo of Marc Hirschi and Davide Formolo.

Davide Formolo wins the 2023 Veneto Classic

Despite being outnumbered, Zana gave it his all inside the final 8km of racing, but it wasn’t enough to fend of his rivals who used their numerical advantage with Formolo soloing to victory.

Behind, Zana continued to chase and rounded off his debut season with Team Jayco AlUla with a trip to the podium as he crossed the line in third place.

Filippo Zana:
“I’m happy to finish off my season with a podium. I tried to go solo quite a few times, but the UAE riders were able to work as a double, and it was quite impossible to overcome them.

"I knew the roads very well and gave it everything I had. Now I’ll look forward to a break, and to coming back for the new season refreshed and ready to go again!”

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Chrono des Nations team reports

We posted the report from winner Josh Tarling's Team INEOS Grenadiers with the results.

Here's the report fron second-place Remco Evenepoel's Team Soudal Quick-Step:

World ITT Champion Remco Evenepoel returned to France for the Chrono des Nations, his 67th racing day of a year which saw the Belgian rack up a total of 13 victories – including the rainbow jersey of the discipline, Liège–Bastogne–Liège, Clasica San Sebastian, the Belgian Nationals, and five Grand Tour stages.

Remco was the least rider to roll down the ramp in Les Herbiers, where a 45.4km slightly undulating terrain awaited the riders who took on the 41st edition of the race. From the very beginning, Soudal Quick-Step’s 23-year-old tapped out a strong rhythm, which he managed to keep all the way to the finish, where only a dozen or so seconds separated him from Joshua Tarling (Ineos Grenadiers), who took the win Sunday afternoon.

The 2023 Chrono de Nations podium from left: Remco Evenepoel (2nd), Joshua Tarling (1st) & Stefan Bissegger (3rd).

For Evenepoel, the most successful rider of our team in 2023, this was his 27th podium of another impressive year, during which he contributed to Soudal Quick-Step’s staggering tally of 55 wins spread over ten months, from January to October. The Belgian was joined in the top five of the Chrono des Nations by French Champion, who in his last race for the squad came home a solid fourth.

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Alexey Lutsenko wins Tour of Turkey

Here’s the the report from Alexey Lutsenko's Team Astana Qazaqstan:

Ed: This is not a race BikeRaceInfo follows

Astana Qazaqstan Team has successfully accomplished its mission at the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey, taking the victory in the final General Classification of the race. After taking the leader jersey on Stage 3 atop Babadag, the Kazakh champion Alexey Lutsenko was able to protect it during the next five days, getting a nice triumph in historical city center of Istanbul.

Alexey Lutsenko winning the Circuito de Getxo earlier this year.

“I am super happy with this win! It was not easy to protect the jersey during almost the whole week, but I had a great team next to me and with these guys everything became possible. The Babadag stage was a brutal one, and I am happy and proud I could win it. Then, during the next days together with the team we did all possible to defend our lead and to take this win. This is the nicest end of the season for the team but also for me. It is cool to finish a tough season with this success. Some years ago, I was close to a win here in Turkey, but finished second. Coming here this year I was super motivated to do it better, I was focusing on the result, I got a top form for and after the Asian Games and together with my teammates we finally won it”, – said Alexey Lutsenko.

“I think this is a very beautiful end of the season for our team. The calendar we have prepared for Alexey worked quite perfectly. He couldn’t reach the goals we set for him in the start of the season due to sickness and other things, while now he was able to find his best form and to perform on the highest level at the Asian Games and here at the Tour of Turkey. Also, with this win Kazakhstan got important points in the Olympic ranking, taking two out of four licenses for the Olympic Games in Paris. This is a very important point for us, and we are happy with it. Of course, it wouldn’t be possible without support of all our partners, especially Samruk-Kazyna and the foundation SportQory”, – said Alexandr Vinokurov, General Manager of Astana Qazaqstan Team.

Also, Harold Tejada, who was third atop Babadag, kept his third place to the end, taking his first ever podium as a pro rider.

In the last stage in Istanbul Astana’s sprinter Cees Bol once again took a podium place, finishing second in a bunch sprint. This is his fourth podium place in this edition of the Tour of Turkey.

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