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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Saturday, December 3, 2016

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2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

Kind words do not cost much. Yet they accomplish much. - Blaise Pascal

Latest completed racing:

2017 Tour de Yorkshire route announced

This press release came to me from the organizer:

The full route for the 2017 Tour de Yorkshire has been unveiled at the Impressions Gallery in Bradford.

Welcome to Yorkshire Chief Executive Sir Gary Verity led a packed press conference on Friday morning with the Amaury Sport Organisation’s Tour de France Director Christian Prudhomme. Scott Thwaites was one of many star riders in attendance along with Yorkshire cycling legends such as Brian Robinson, Malcolm Elliott and Denise Burton-Cole. 

Thomas Voeckler

Thomas Voeckler won the 2016 edition of the Tour de Yorkshire

The third edition of the race takes place between 28-30 April 2017. It encompasses all four corners of the county and takes in Yorkshire’s two UNESCO World Heritage Sites at Fountains Abbey and Saltaire:

Tour de France: the Inside Story

The race takes the peloton from the coast through the Yorkshire Wolds, starting outside the refurbished Bridlington Spa and heading into Pocklington for the first intermediate sprint. The classified climbs up the Côtes de Garrowby Hill and Goathland will get the legs pumping before the race hits the coastline again at Whitby where the riders will get a great view of the world-famous Abbey as they contest the second sprint of the day. The route continues on to Robin Hood’s Bay for the third and final climb and then it’s full steam into Scarborough for the now-legendary finish along North Bay.

Starting on Tadcaster bridge - which will be newly reopened following flood damage last Boxing Day - this stage takes the riders through some of Yorkshire’s finest market towns. They will venture into Knaresborough, where the first intermediate sprint points are up for grabs, and the day’s sole categorised climb comes on the fearsome Côte de Lofthouse before the descent into Masham. It’s on to Ripon for the second intermediate sprint and the race will skirt the stunning Fountains Abbey before a fast approach to Harrogate. The action reaches its crescendo along Parliament Street, just as it did on the opening stage of the 2014 Tour de France.

Named The Yorkshire Terrier as this is the toughest stage in the history of the Tour de Yorkshire, riders will start at Bradford City Park before heading into Saltaire. The action then briefly joins the 2014 Tour de France route at Burley-in-Wharfedale before passing the majestic Bolton Abbey and into the Yorkshire Dales. Skipton is the next town on the agenda, with the first of eight categorised climbs being contested on the Côte de Silsden. The following ascent comes on the cobbled rise up Haworth’s picturesque main street and another climb at Leeming must also be tackled before they face the infamous Côte de Shibden Wall. This cobbled brute could see splits form before the intermediate sprint at Clifton. The race then traverses from West to South Yorkshire and into Penistone, and another sprint is on the cards at Stocksbridge before the riders embark on a torturous 22km finishing circuit that features no-less than four categorised climbs. These come at Deepcar, Wigtwizzle, Ewden Height and Midhopestones before the race reaches its climax at Fox Valley.

Lotto-Soudal 2017 teams announced

Lotto-Soudal sent me this update:

December has arrived and 2017 is fast approaching. Of course, a new year means a new cycling season. On 20 December the riders of Lotto Soudal will be officially presented during the team presentation. Below you can already find the composition of the World Tour team, the Ladies team and the U23 team for 2017.

World Tour team:

Next year, the World Tour team will consist of 28 riders. The strong riders are being loyal to the team. Gert Dockx, Greg Henderson and Pim Ligthart are leaving the team whilst five riders are joining us. The Belgian Enzo Wouters and the Briton James Callum Shaw are coming over from the U23 team of Lotto Soudal. The Belgian Rémy Mertz is the third rider who makes his debut as a pro with the team. His compatriot Nikolas Maes has years of experience in the pro peloton and as from 2017, he will be able to use that experience at Lotto Soudal. The Dutchman Moreno Hofland is the fifth and last newcomer.

Team 2017: Sander Armée, Lars Bak, Tiesj Benoot, Kris Boeckmans, Sean De Bie, Jasper De Buyst, Bart De Clercq, Thomas De Gendt, Jens Debusschere, Frederik Frison, Tony Gallopin, André Greipel, Adam Hansen, Moreno Hofland (newcomer), Nikolas Maes (newcomer), Tomasz Marczynski, Rémy Mertz (newcomer), Maxime Monfort, Jürgen Roelandts, James Callum Shaw (newcomer), Marcel Sieberg, Rafael Valls, Tosh Van der Sande, Jelle Vanendert, Louis Vervaeke, Jelle Wallays, Tim Wellens & Enzo Wouters (newcomer).

Andre Greipel

André Greipel will be back for another season in Lotto-Soudal colors

Ladies team:

Next year, twelve elite riders will be part of the Lotto Soudal Ladies team. Seven riders of the present team are leaving: Sofie De Vuyst, Willeke Knol, Claudia Lichtenberg, Emma Pooley, Anouk Rijff, Anisha Vekemans and Susy Zorzi. In September, Lieselot Decroix ended her career after the final stage of the Lotto Belgium Tour. In 2017, the team welcomes five new riders. Annelies Dom and Kaat Van der Meulen are two Belgians who will reinforce the team. Together with Lotte Kopecky they are part of the national team pursuit squad on the track. The Dutch Puck Moonen, the Danish Trine Schmidt and the Austrian Anna Kiesenhofer have also chosen for Lotto Soudal. Again, we have one youth rider in the Lotto Soudal team: Julie Roelandts. Last week-end she won the Belgian Cyclo-cross Championship for 14-year-old girls!

Team 2017: Isabelle Beckers, Jessie Daams, Elise Delzenne, Annelies Dom (newcomer), Chantal Hoffmann, An-Li Kachelhoffer, Anna Kiesenhofer (newcomer), Lotte Kopecky, Puck Moonen (newcomer), Julie Roelandts, Trine Schmidt (newcomer), Kaat Van der Meulen (newcomer) and Fenna Vanhoutte.

U23 team:

Eight riders are leaving the U23 team of which five are becoming pro in 2017: Kevin Deltombe (Topsport Vlaanderen), Michael Goolaerts (Veranda’s Willems), Edward Planckaert (Topsport Vlaanderen), James Callum Shaw and Enzo Wouters (both Lotto Soudal). Alex Braybrooke, Steff Cras and Joachim Vanreyten are the other three riders who will not be part of the team for next year. Eight new riders are joining us instead. First, there’s Ruben Apers who got fifth during the time trial for juniors at the last World Championships in Qatar. Brent Van Moer, the best Belgian with his thirteenth place at the Junior World Championships on the road, will also ride for the U23 team of Lotto Soudal. Robbe Debuyck, Alfdan De Decker, Sander De Pestel, Mitch Groot, Laurens Huys and Gerben Thijssen are the other newcomers. The team will be composed of 23 riders.

Team 2017: Ruben Apers (newcomer), Jonas Castrique, Alfdan De Decker (newcomer), Sander De Pestel (newcomer), Robbe Debuyck (newcomer), Stan Dewulf, Robbe Ghys, Mitch Groot (newcomer), Steff Hermans, Mikkel Frølich Honoré, Laurens Huys (newcomer), Kevin Inkelaar, Ward Jaspers, Bjorg Lambrecht, Senne Leysen, Milan Menten, Emiel Planckaert, Gerben Thijssen (newcomer), Mathias Van Gompel, Brent Van Moer (newcomer), Harm Vanhoucke, Thomas Vereecken and Aaron Verwilst.

Accell expands omnichannel distribution of Raleigh to Amazon

This came from Bicycle Retailer & Industry News:

KENT, Wash. (BRAIN) — Raleigh bikes are now sold on Amazon as part of Accell North America's growing omnichannel strategy. ANA recently began selling on Amazon with a few select models and has gradually increased the SKU count.

Most of the models offered are priced at $800 and below, said Chris Speyer, managing director for Accell North America, parent company of Raleigh, Diamondback and Redline.

In October, Raleigh Electric was established as a stand-alone business headquartered out of Accell Group's Electric Bike Competence Center (EBCC) in Simi Valley, and reporting directly to its Dutch parent Accell Group NV in the Netherlands. Haibike, Ghost, Izip and Raleigh Electric are run as separate entities. Raleigh Electric bikes will continue to be fulfilled through dealer partners.

While Diamondback has been sold on Amazon and at sporting goods retailers for a number of years, Raleigh had been strictly sold through specialty retail until last spring when ANA launched online sales on Raleigh's U.S. website and began allowing dealers to sell bikes on their store websites.

A number of Raleigh dealers were selling the brand through Amazon's marketplace as ANA opened up its internet distribution, Speyer said. "What we've done is extended it to make sure the product is available through that channel," Speyer said.

You can read the entire story here.

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