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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary

You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him. - Attributed to both Johann Wolfgang von Goethe & Malcolm Forbes

Lotto-Soudal's early-season racing program revealed

This team sent me this news:

Cycling's 50 Craziest Stories

Within one month, the 2016 cycling season takes off. The national championships of Australia and New-Zealand on 10th January, are the first races on the calendar. Currently, the riders are fine tuning their form in sunnier places. In January, Lotto Soudal has another team training camp scheduled before the riders start their season.

The beginning of the season remains mainly the same as last year, just the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race will be added to the programme, this race takes place right after the Tour Down Under.

On 17th January, the Lotto Soudal team starts its season with the criterium in Adelaide, ‘The People’s Choice Classic’. Two days after that, the Tour Down Under starts; the first WorldTour race of the year. This six-day event takes place in Australia and in this race, the riders can take their first WorldTour points. Lotto Soudal has already made the team selection. These riders will start at the Tour Down Under: Lars Bak, Thomas De Gendt, Gert Dockx, Adam Hansen, Greg Henderson, Pim Ligthart and Rafael Valls. After this tour, the riders will race the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race. At the end of January, it’s time to race four days on Mallorca, during the Mallorca Challenge.

Lars Ytting Bak

Lars Ytting Bak will be in Australia for the start of the season

During the first week of February, the riders head to France for the GP La Marseillaise and Etoile de Bessegés. This stage race starts on 2/02 and ends on 7/02. After that, the riders have to wait until the Volta ao Algarve and the Ruta del Sol; both starting on 17/02 and ending on 21/02.

The Flemish cycling season starts as usual with the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday 27/02. The day after, you can admire the riders during Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne; in 2016 this race gets awarded category 1.HC (hors catégorie, LTS) for the first time in its existence.

The training camp is also the ideal moment to further discuss the race programmes for 2016. Manager Marc Sergeant chooses to follow the same path as in 2015.

Manager Marc Sergeant: “In January and February, there aren’t any big changes to our programme. We go to Down Under with Adam Hansen and Greg Henderson, who are both very motivated to perform well on their continent. And with Rafael Valls, we have a rider in the team who has top ten ambitions. Later in the year, Valls will get his chance in the stage races of one week, like Tirreno-Adriatico, Volta a Catalunya, Tour de Romandie and the Giro. Also in Paris-Nice we will start with a very competitive team, with Tony Gallopin who will get his chance on home soil. Gallopin will work towards the Ardennes Classics via the Vuelta al País Vasco. In comparison with last year, he will also ride the Flèche Wallonne.”

“Tim Wellens will ride Paris-Nice before the Vuelta al País Vasco, then the Walloon classics and the Giro. This combination worked fluently two years ago. His unfortunate Tour of 2015 helped to make the decision to return to the recipe of the year before. In his ambition to go to the Olympic Games, he can build up towards the second part of the season in June and July.”

“André Greipel will race the first time on WorldTour level in Paris-Nice. The Tour remains obviously the main goal, but just as in 2015 he will ride the Giro. For the Flemish classics we are well armed with Jürgen Roelandts, Tiesj Benoot, Jens Debusschere and Jelle Wallays. They are the core to try to take another step forward after 2015. And Adam Hansen? He will race in May in Italy, in July in France and in September in Spain (laughs). At least without any accidents!”

EU Court of Justice Cancels Giant China’s Dumping Conviction

This news was posted on Bike-EU:

BRUSSELS, Belgium – On 26 November, 2015 the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the anti-dumping conviction of Giant China is cancelled. The EU has two months to appeal the judgment. It is only after the period of two months will elapse, without the EU lodging an appeal, that the judgment will take effect and the anti-dumping duties imposed on Giant will need to be effectively terminated.

When there’s no appeal on the judgement of the EU Court of Justice Giant China will be, next to Oyama and Ideal, the 3rd major bicycle producer in China that can export to the European Union at 0% anti-dumping duty. Oyama Bicycles (Taicang) Co. Ltd and Ideal (Dongguan) Bike Co. Ltd are exempted from the June 5, 2013 Council Regulation that imposed a 48.5% anti-dumping duty on imports of bicycles originating in the People’s Republic of China after an interim review.

Tinkoff team to reveal racing kit December 19

This press release came from the team:

Alberto Contador, Peter Sagan, Rafal Majka and Ivan Basso will present the race kit for the 2016 season on December 19th during the bib draw of the Audi Fis Ski World Cup - Ladies Alpine competition in the Courchevel ice rink. On December 20th, Peter Sagan will ride his snow bike after the end of the first run of the giant slalom.

Peter Sagan

World champion Peter Sagan and other team members in thier 2015 kit.

Tinkoff and Courchevel will bring together the world's best athletes in the sports of cycling and skiing by holding two eye-catching events during the Audi Fis Ski World Cup - Ladies Alpine competition.

On Saturday, December 19th, Alberto Contador, Peter Sagan, Rafal Majka and Ivan Basso will take to the stage during the bib draw of the Audi Fis Ski World Cup - Ladies Alpine competition in the Courchevel ice rink. The team's three riders and its technical coordinator will officially unveil the 2016 racewear, one week after the debut of the striking "La Datcha" training kit in Gran Canaria.

Showing off his legendary bike-handling skills the following day, Sunday, December 20th, Peter Sagan will ride his snow bike on the Giant Slalom course between the two competition runs. After a long and successful season riding on roads, cobblestones, the desert or the lava of Mount Etna, the 2015 World Champion will tackle for the first time the snowed slopes of the Alps.

According to Stefano Feltrin, Managing Director of Tinkoff, "the public unveiling of the following year's colors is a milestone for every professional sports team and holding it in Courchevel is, undoubtedly, the best way to end the season in style. Courchevel is an iconic ski resort and this event will bring together the elite of two popular sports, cycling and skiing. The world's best riders will share the ice rink with the world's best female skiers".

"Courchevel has also strong ties to team owner Oleg Tinkov, as one of his two "La Datcha" chalets under construction is located there", commented Feltrin on the two properties, in Courchevel and Val Thorens, that will be ready and available for rent in late 2016.

"It is with great honor that Courchevel hosts Tinkoff for the presentation of its official kit on December 19th and 20th. During the weekend, we organize a Ski World Cup - Ladies Alpine competition, and on that occasion, the Classic Tennis Tour will also take place in the resort. The participation of Tinkoff, currently the most talented cycling team, will make the Courchevel event a must for all fans of top-level sports. We are proud to welcome so many champions in our beautiful resort of Courchevel", commented  Philippe Mugnier, mayor of Courchevel Saint Bon.

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