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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, December 9, 2020

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2020 Tour de France | 2020 Giro d'Italia

Man is a clever animal who behaves like an imbecile. - Albert Schweitzer

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Fumiyuki Beppu joins EF Pro Cycling

Here is the team’s announcement:

EF Pro Cycling is proud to announce the addition of Fumiyuki Beppu to its ranks for 2021. The Japanese veteran is making the move back into the WorldTour after a year-long stint with the French Pro team – NIPPO DELKO One Provence.

Fumiyuki Beppu

Fumiyuki Beppu racing in the 2017 Dauphine. Sirotti photo

Beppu, who will be entering his 17th year as a professional rider next season, is looking forward to the move back to the highest level. “I am excited for this opportunity to contribute to EF Pro Cycling in 2021,” he said. “My impression of the team is that it is a professional cycling team that is unique and always has gorgeous cycling kits and bicycles. The team does great at the Classics and at the GrandTours and the teamwork is always solid. I am excited to ride with them as a team.”

Over his career, Beppu has accumulated five Japanese national titles – two in the road race and three in the individual time trial – and was crowned the Asian road race champion in 2008. While he excels at one-day races and has ridden in every Monument, Beppu is also an accomplished GrandTour rider, competing in six.

“I am highly motivated, which is probably my best asset as a rider,” explained Beppu. “Having experiences in many different types of races such as GrandTours or Monuments is also a strength that has allowed me to keep being successful so far.

For Fumiyuki, racing in the WorldTour is a childhood dream that came true which makes this move back to the WorldTour all the more special for him.

“I started racing when I was 9 years old. My dream was to become a professional cyclist in Europe. After graduating from high school, I went to Europe and raced in the French amateur category for three years, where my results were recognized and I was able to become a professional rider,” he said.

He currently lives in the AIN province of France — a place often frequented by cycling’s biggest races. Beppu loves exploring the mountains surrounding his home.

“I currently live in the AIN province of France, which is often included in the course of the Tour de France, Critérium du Dauphiné, Tour de l’AIN and Tour de l’Avenir,” explained Beppu. “In those races, I ride my training course in races, which is always a strange feeling. Personally, I really enjoy riding the Grand Colombier and the beautiful Bugey mountains.”

This year however, like many cyclists worldwide, Beppu had to get used to long training sessions on the indoor trainer. “When I was finally able to ride outside again, I realized just how happy my bicycle made me and it relit the love I had for riding my bike,” said Beppu.

And while he was able to rekindle his love for riding this year, for Beppu, there is nothing quite as beautiful as riding with his daughter. “I love going on bike rides with my daughter on the weekends. I bought a Cannondale kids bike for her Christmas present, and I love watching her grow up on the bike.”

US framemakers face new EU tariff, an 'unpleasant surprise'

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News sent me this:

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (BRAIN) — Last year the bike industry escaped collateral damage from the long-running dispute between the European Union and the United States over commercial aircraft industry subsidies. But this fall, in a continuation of that dispute, the EU has imposed a 25% tariff on U.S.-made bike frames, forks, and frame parts.

The tariff imposed last month applies to complete frames and frame parts, but not complete bikes. The bike products are on a list of U.S. exports valued at $4 billion annually subject to the new duty. Other products on the list include ketchup, chocolate, frozen orange juice, rum and vodka, video game consoles and exercise equipment, all subject to a 25% tariff. U.S.-made aircraft are subject to a new 15% tariff.

The U.S. has accused the EU of subsidizing commercial aircraft manufacturers, Airbus in particular, and last year imposed new tariffs on European goods including cheese and wine. European-made bike parts, including cassettes (think Campagnolo) and hubs (think DT Swiss) were originally on the list, but testimony by the U.S. bike industry led to their removal.

The EU, which says the U.S. subsidizes Boeing through tax breaks, responded on Nov. 9 with the list that includes bike frames, forks and parts thereof. The EU imported about 13 million euros ($15.7 million) in those products from the U.S. in 2019, according to European Commission trade reports.

One of the best known U.S frame makers, Allied Cycle Works, does considerable sales internationally, thanks in part to a special edition frame model the company did with Rapha this year, said Brendan Quirk, Allied's CEO.

Quirk said the tariff was "an unpleasant surprise" and "a disappointment."

The special frame was connected to Allied and Rapha-sponsored gravel racer Colin Strickland, and the two brands may do another special edition bike in 2021, Quirk said.

"Naturally, this (bike) would have global reach. The tariffs certainly won't help us sell bikes in the EU," Quirk said.

Quirk said Allied also has expanded sales in Europe and began setting up distribution there in 2020. "We did a lot of good work in this area, but we have a long way to go. These tariffs will be a drag as we explore key untapped markets for Allied such as Germany."

However, Quirk noted that the tariff applies only to frames, not complete bikes.

You can read the entire story here.

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