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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, April 26, 2017

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2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

Truth is a pathless land. - Jiddu Krishnamurti

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Team Sky's Tour of Romandie prologue report

Vasil Kiryienka set the seventh fastest time at the Tour de Romandie while Chris Froome took no risks in the wet opening prologue.

Froome described the conditions as ‘sketchy’ as the six-day event kicked off across a 4.8-kilometre course in Aigle, featuring some technical turns.

Kiryienka led the line with a time just 10 seconds off prologue winner Fabio Felline (Trek-Segafredo).

There were further strong performances from Team Sky riders with Gianni Moscon (+16”), David Lopez (+24”) and Owain Doull (+25”) all clocking competitive times.

Froome came home 29 seconds back on Felline but set a time comparable to a number of his GC rivals.

Chris Froome

Chris Froome rode a conservative time trial

Looking at the bigger picture, Froome explained to “It was really sketchy out there. The main thing for me today was to just stay upright. It’s not worth coming off on one of these corners at this point in the season. Having said that I’m a good 20 seconds back, most notably on (Primoz) Roglic at the moment, so that’s going to be hard to make up.

“But let’s see. We’ve got a week of racing ahead of us. Romandie is one of the key races in my build up to the Tour and hopefully I’ll be able to go away with a solid week of racing in my legs by the end of the race.”

Froome’s risk-free approach was vindicated as slick roads saw a number of riders struggle. Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing) was involved in the most high-profile incident of the day, crashing during his run. The American rebounded well to drop just five seconds to Froome.

Lotto-Soudal announces Giro d'Italia line-up

The team sent me this news:

Today, Lotto Soudal can announce the nine riders that will take the start of the one hundredth Giro d'Italia for the team. The first Grand Tour of the year kicks off on Friday 5 May on the Italian island Sardinia and finishes on Sunday 28 May in Milan.

André Greipel (34) won three Giro stages last year, in his entire career he has won six Giro stages. In his fifth Giro ever, the German champion aims for another stage victory. Moreno Hofland (25) will ride his third consecutive Giro, the first one in Lotto Soudal shirt.

Andre Greipel

Andre Greipel winning stage five of this year's Paris-Nice

For Bart De Clercq (30) it is the third Giro participation as well, after a four-year break. In 2011, Bart won the sixth stage to Montevergine di Mercogliano, as a neo-pro. With Maxime Monfort (34) a second Belgian climber is part of the Lotto Soudal line-up. It is his fifth Giro. The past years, Maxime each time finished on top fifteen of the overall ranking: fourteenth in 2014, eleventh in 2015 and fifteenth in 2016. In the mountains, Bart and Maxime can rely on the support of Tomasz Marczynski (33), who already stood at the start of the Giro 2012.

Sean De Bie (25) will also start his second Giro next Friday, the second Grand Tour in his career. Last year, Sean sprinted to the fifth place in Turin at the end of the last stage. Jasper De Buyst (23) makes his Giro début, after he rode his first Grand Tour in 2015, that was the Vuelta.

Lars Bak (37) is more experienced in riding Grand Tours. This Giro will be his seventeenth Grand Tour and the ninth Giro. In 2012, Lars triumphed in Sestri Levante, where the eleventh stage finished. Last, but not least there's Adam Hansen (almost 36). For the Aussie it will be the 24th Grand Tour in his career, the seventeenth consecutive Grand Tour that he can complete and his ninth Giro. In 2013, Adam won the seventh stage in Pescara.

Line-up Lotto Soudal: Lars Bak, Sean De Bie, Jasper De Buyst, Bart De Clercq, André Greipel, Adam Hansen, Moreno Hofland, Tomasz Marczynski and Maxime Monfort.

Sports directors: Bart Leysen and Frederik Willems.

1970s pro Phil Edwards dies at age 67 posted this sad news:

Phil Edwards died at his home on Sunday evening 23rd age 67 years – cause of death, heart attack, although undetermined.

Philip Edwards raced in Italy as an amateur for GS Mobigori and through contacts made by his Italian mother Maria he turned professional for the team of Francesco Moser GS Sanson.

He represented the United Kingdom at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, West Germany, where he finished sixth in the road race, just behind teammate Phil Bayton.

He was a professional cyclist from 1976 to 1980 with GS Sanson, who’s leader Francesco Moser was 1977 World Champion and triple winner of Paris Roubaix.

You can read the the entire story here.

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