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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Saturday, May 13, 2017

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2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

An empty head is not really empty; it is stuffed with rubbish. Hence the difficulty of forcing anything into an empty head. - Eric Hoffer

Current Racing:

Latest completed racing:

Giro d'Italia stage 7 team reports

Here's what Quick-Step Floors had to say:

Fernando Gaviria continued to impress at the Giro d'Italia, his maiden Grand Tour, after coming from far back to score his third top 3 finish in the space of five days. The 22-year-old, who was victorious in Cagliari and Messina, once again relied on a strong team, which protected him from the start and chased the two riders who were part of the breakaway, Giuseppe Fonzi (Wilier Triestina) and Dmitry Kozontchuk (Gazprom-RusVelo).

Dries Devenyns, Iljo Keisse and Pieter Serry kept the duo's gap under control during the 224km-long stage which took the riders from Castrovillari to Alberobello, and reabsorbed them inside the last 20 kilometers, before race leader Bob Jungels took the front in the closing kilometers in order to bring the Quick-Step Floors train in the best position for the tricky and complicated stage 7 finish.

After being set up by Maximiliano Richeze, Fernando Gaviria unleashed his devastating turn of speed, and even though the road ahead had many twists and turns and was really crowded at one points, the 22-year-old managed to extricate himself from there, come around Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) and finish runner-up on the stage, behind Caleb Ewan (Orica-Scott), but ahead of Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe).

Giro sprint

The really close stage seven sprint

"That final kilometer was hectic and really technical, but Ewan did a great sprint and deserved to win. I was boxed in at one point, but made use of my track skills and came to the front, taking second in the end. Giving that I was far back when the sprint started, this is a good result, one which helps me stretch my lead in the maglia ciclamino standings. I am happy the legs were there and will see what the next stages will bring", said Gaviria after notching Quick-Step Floors' 45th top-3 finish of the season.

Bob Jungels arrived two seconds later, together with the other general classification favourites, and will now don the maglia rosa for the fourth day in a row, a personal record for the 24-year-old rider, who leads also the white jersey classification, where he has a ten-second cushion over the next two men.

Bora-hansgrohe posted this:

After Lukas’ third place yesterday, BORA – hansgrohe did it again today. Sprinter Sam Bennett raced to a photo-finish to third place after an amazing leadout until the final meters from his teammates. This is the fifth podium result for BORA – hansgrohe.

At 11:50 the peloton began stage 6 of the 100th Giro d´Italia. The start was in the city of Castrovillari finishing in the famous Alberobello, hosting the race for the first time. It was 224 kilometers on a basically flat route today but the last 40 kilometers were undulating and went slightly up. The final kilometers had to be undertaken carefully because after a short climb the last 700 meters went downhill before the riders will sprint into the finish.

The race started, like the previous days, with an early breakaway, two riders were going clear and had a gap of more than 3 minutes. BORA – hansgrohe stayed in the peloton working for Sam Bennett today.

The group was gone for most of the stage, with 20 kilometers remaining the sprinter teams started to form for their leaders and the gap dropped steadily.

When the breakaway was caught, it was Team BORA – hansgrohe who took control of the pace in front of the peloton. The peloton crossed the city of Alberobello with 10 kilometers remaining and the hard fight for the positions started. Sam Bennett was well protected by his leadout riders, Lukas Pöstlberger and Rudi Selig.

In the last meters of the race, Bennett was on the wheel of Rudi Selig, eventual winner C. Ewan (Orica-Scott) was on the left side, Sam had F. Gaviria (Quick-Step Floors) on his wheel on the left. All three crossed the finish line and when the photo finish was analysed, the team knew Sam Bennett had again finished in third place. In 7 stages BORA – hansgrohe has had five podium results, with one win, one second place and three third places.

“After this leadout the boys would have deserved this victory, they did a great job today. The Giro is going pretty well, with 5 podium results in 7 stages we are showing that the team has strength and depth. Sam was only beaten by a few centimeters.” – Jens Zemke. Sports director

"It was a hectic and really a tricky final. I really dont know what happened but the boys did really a great job and I want to thank them. We are a pretty young group here but we work so good together and today it was really close to the win." - Sam Bennett

Tour of California team updates:

Here's what UAE Team Emirates sent me:

Rider Roster: Simone Consonni (ITA), Filippo Ganna (ITA), Marko Kump (Slo), Yousif Mirza (UAE), Stake Vergad Laengen (NOR), Kristijan Durasek (CRO), Federico Zurlo (ITA), Andrea Guardini (ITA).  

Sport Director: Mario Scirea (ITA): “Our goal in this race is gain experience for our young riders and in the same time to get some good results” said Mario Scirea. “For the first year the Tour of California is a Word Tour race and it is important to do well. We have really interesting riders like Consonni, for the sprint, Ganna for ITT. Our GC man will be Durasek”.

Simone Consonni: “We are a young team, but for sure we are here, even if the Amgen Tour of California has became a world tour category and there are very strong riders, to fight in every stage. About me I want to understand my condition and try to be protagonist in some sprint”.

Here's the Team BMC Tour of California release:

12 May, 2017, Santa Rosa, California (USA): BMC Racing Team will return to its American roots on Sunday (May 14) when an eight-rider roster lines up at the now UCI WorldTour race, AMGEN Tour of California.

Sports Director Jackson Stewart said that BMC Racing Team will be targeting both stage wins and the overall General Classification at the seven-day race. "For me, we have a great leader for the General Classification in Samuel Sánchez, who is now fully recovered from his crash at Vuelta al Pais Vasco. He has had a great block of training in preparation for this race, and I am confident in his abilities."

"We will also be looking to race for stage wins in California. With Jempy Drucker, who has been good here in the past, on our roster we have a strong leader for the sprints. I think we also have some great young guys who can look for good breakaway opportunities as well as a selection of strong riders for the time trial with Brent Bookwalter, Tom Bohli, and Miles Scotson."

Samuel Sanchez

Samuel Sanchez

Samuel Sánchez is looking forward to returning to California. "The AMGEN Tour of California is a race which truly impressed me in 2016 and this year we are coming back with renewed enthusiasm and the motivation to repeat our strong performance."

"I needed more time than I initially imagined after Liège-Bastogne-Liège, but my recovery has been going in the right direction. Brent Bookwalter, Miles Scotson and I have put in a good block of hard work at a training camp in Big Bear Lake to successfully prepare for the race ahead. Brent is also highly motivated as he will be racing on home soil and I think he can be up there at the end of the week. We will be looking to produce the best result possible when we reach Pasadena," Sánchez explained.

AMGEN Tour of California (May 14 - 20)

Rider Roster: Tom Bohli (SUI), Brent Bookwalter (USA), Jempy Drucker (LUX), Martin Elmiger (SUI), Floris Gerts (NED), Samuel Sánchez (ESP), Michael Schar (SUI), Miles Scotson (AUS)

Sports Directors: Jackson Stewart (USA), Allan Peiper (AUS)

Pirelli to launch line of road bike tires this fall

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News sent me this:

MILAN (BRAIN) — Pirelli is returning to the bicycle market with a line of road tires that will be available this fall.

The 110-year old Italian brand has focused on performance auto and motorcycle tires in recent decades, and will adopt its P Zero brand from motorized use: the bike tire line is called P Zero Velo.

Pirelli also owns the Clement brand name, which is licensed by U.S.-based Donnelly Sports for a line of bike tires sold globally. Donnelly, owned by industry veteran Donn Kellogg, focuses on cyclocross, gravel and adventure tires and wheels under the Clement name. Donnelly also offers some performance road tire model under the Clement name.

The Pirelli P Zero line will borrow a color-coded branding system from Pirelli's Formula One tires: Silver for road racing, red for time trial and blue for the four seasons.

The range will be available in September this year and will be distributed in Europe, North America and Apac regions.

Pirelli was a sponsor of the first edition of Giro d'Italia, in 1909, and 30 of the 49 finishers that year used the company's tires.

You can read the entire story here.

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