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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Thursday, November 24, 2016

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2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

Failures, repeated failures, are finger posts on the road to achievement. One fails forward toward success. - C. S. Lewis

Latest completed racing:

Chaves to kick-start 2017 season in Australia

Orica-BikeExchange sent me this update:

Il Lombardia winner Esteban Chaves will thrill local ORICA-BikeExchange fans when he launches his 2017 season in Australia over the summer. The self-named 'Colombian Kangaroo' will kick start the year at the Tour Down Under (14-22 Jan) in Adelaide before travelling to Victoria for the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race (29 Jan) and Jayco Herald Sun Tour (1-5 Feb).

Chaves, who had a breakout 2016 with podium finishes at the Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a Espana as well as his historic Il Lombardia victory that saw him become the first Colombian to win a cycling monument, is looking forward to contributing to the team’s all-important Australian campaign.

Esteban Chaves

Esteban Chaves wins La Lombardia

“These races are super important for ORICA-BikeExchange,” Chaves said. “We can only race in Australia for these three races each year so I am happy to be with them for this. The boys are super motivated to race near their homes and I am a little bit Australian now so I am happy for this too.

“This year we set some big goals and we meet and pass them many times, especially with the Giro d'Italia, Vuelta a Espana and Il Lombardia. Sometimes I don't believe all of this happened. Next year, we will start a little different in Australia but we will again set some big goals for hope this success again.”

Returning to Australia for the first time since November 2013, Chaves said he is looking forward to repaying Australian fans for their unwavering support. “I am really excited to go back to Australia,” the 26-year-old said. “I want to see every single fan that supports me, but I want to see them properly, so we chose to start the season in the Australian summer for this reason.”

“Actually, I don’t have the best memories of last time I was in Australia. I don’t speak English so can’t speak with anyone and also I am suffering a lot in the training. For sure this time will be a lot different. When I go to one new place I like to see how the local people live, what the local people eat, what the local people do, the culture and mentality. I am super excited to look at all these different things, understand Australians even more and learn why Australians are super nice persons with everyone.”

Sport director Matt White said having Chaves in Australia will be a big boost for the team on and off the bike. “We are excited to bring Esteban to Australia early next year,” White said. “In the right conditions he has the potential to make a serious impact on all three races he will start.”

“We know the Australian fans will love having him Down Under. This is something they have been requesting for a while now, so we are pleased we could fit it into his 2017 program. I’m confident he won’t disappoint.”

Movistar's Victor de la Parte has arrived

Here's the team's update:

It was high time for Víctor de la Parte (Vitoria, ESP; 1986) to be able to take his car to any event the team required him, without it being a two-day journey. “It’s such a big change, to be living just 80km away from your squad’s headquarters, driving yourself to the pre-season camp, speaking your mother tongue with many guys you already knew before… CCC Sprandi was of course a big team, yet this is a big leap forward, a whole different level. We all five newcomers to the Movistar Team this winter have felt like at home from the very first minute we put out feet on the hotel. It’s like a family: you can really feel the good atmosphere, the experience they’ve ammassed over the years, which makes things work so smoothly.”

“I’ve fought for many years for this place, travelling the world, gathering experiences. Despite being already 30 years old, I think it’s a good age for me to enter the World Tour. I took up competing in cycling really like -he started full-time activity just over a decade ago - Ed.-, and I always lacked a bit of ‘maturity’. Every squad I made part of -Caja Rural, SP Tableware, Efapel, Vorarlberg, CCC Sprandi- was an adaptation and rekindling of all things, going ahead and exploring what I could do in pro cycling. And I feel like the best is yet to come from myself,” explains De la Parte, entering a stretch of otherwise full physical development.

Victor de la PArte

De la Parte wins the third stage in the 2015 Tour of Austria

Even though his palmarès already features big results like the GC victory in the Tour of Austria (2015, a prologue win in the Volta a Portugal (2014) or a podium finish in the Tour of Croatia this very 2016 -the last season also including a near top-ten overall finish in the Tour de Suisse-, “I missed some calendar depth before joining the WorldTour for the upcoming season. Actually, I was riding everything that was in store at my previous squads. That’s why I don’t have any big requirements for the Movistar Team when it comes to my schedule. There are no ‘compulsory’ races for me. Whether it’s a WorldTour race or your backyard event, it’ll be a big race - this squad only races in the best venues. I might be more inclined towards competing in Grand Tours, since I think those are better suited to my abilities. Except for the sprint - I an ‘null’ when it comes to sprinting (laughs) - I can defend myself well into all terrains, and when in form, as well as doing good TTs, I really fare well in the mountains. All in all, I consider myself a good allrounder,” says Víctor, whose girlfriend, ex-pro Amaia Martioda, has helped him from both personal and professional points of view as a performance nutritionist.

“I think that we both Eusebio Unzué and myself are hoping from me to breakthough here, take everything that I’ve got outside at last - and we expect it to be a lot more than I’ve done so far. The Movistar Team offers me everything that I need to thrive, and I’ll make all efforts possible to reach a good level,” remarks De la Parte, one of only three pro riders (together with Sky’s Mikel Landa and cyclo-cross specialist Javier Ruiz de Larrinaga) in Álava, one of the three provinces in cycling heartland Basque Country. “We’re truly lacking some opportunities, especially since the U23 structure coordinated by (former pro) Gorka Beloki, based in Vitoria, had to stop after 2016, so we must keep fighting for the young guys to feel like there’s a point of reference, an aim they can set their sights on. There’s quality in our land - they just need a bit of support.”

Orbea moves to omni-channel distribution in Europe sent me this news:

MALLABIA, Spain – Orbea switches to omni-channel for which the Spanish bike maker recently built an attractive site. Here consumers can order bicycles, e-bikes, eMTBs and accessories easily. Subsequently these products are to be delivered to consumers through registered Orbea dealers.

Orbea S. Coop. has switched to omni-channel in ten European countries. The company, which is part of the co-operative Mondragon. It owns and runs 261 companies with close to 75,000 employees. Orbea offers it online shopping service currently in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, the Netherlands, Portugal, UK and Spain.

Orbea has invested heavily in its new site

Products that are ordered here can only reach consumers via Orbea dealers. Dutch Orbea representative Rutger ter Laak says on this, “The dealer keeps his regular margin. He handles the delivery of the bike to the consumer including all matters that come with that. And the dealer continues to be the Orbea banner to its customers.”

You can read the entire story here.

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