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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary | Our YouTube page
2020 Tour de France | 2020 Giro d'Italia

The audiobook version of The Story of the Tour de France, Volume 1 is available.

What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly - that is the first law of nature. - Voltaire

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Yoann Offredo retires

Offredo’s Circus Wanty-Gobert team posted this:

Just before his 34th birthday, Yoann Offredo announced the end of his sportive career. A forced end, due to irreversible injuries after his bad crash at the GP Denain in March 2019. The French rider recovered from a temporary tetraplegia before participating in his third Tour de France with Wanty-Gobert. It would be his last Tour, because an ankle operation would make irreversible damage.

Yoann Offredo

Yoann Offredo climbing in the fifth stage of the 2016 Tour Down Under. Sirotti photo

Offredo started 2020 full confidence and motivation, but it became soon clear that his ankle couldn't bear the succession of races. The Omloop het Nieuwsblad, a race in which he just missed the podium in 2011, was the last race of his cycling career, on February 29th. During his 13 years as a pro, Offredo also took 3rd in Plouay, 7th in Milan-San Remo and 14th at the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.

At the end of his fourth season with Circus-Wanty Gobert-Tormans, the resident of Monthléry received the confirmation about the impossibility to continue sports at high level. The loyal ambassador of Bière des Amis can now start his reconversion, for example as a consultant for France Télévisions, where he covered the latest Tour de France.

Yoann Offredo:
"I wanted to announce the end of my career in order to thank fans and people who surrounded me, but I wasn't capable of doing it. If you’re used to train 30 hours per week, and from one day to another you can’t walk anymore, it isn’t easy. Not physically, but also not mentally. I miss painful legs, being cold, being tired. It is still impossible to practice sports, so I’m forced to rest. I’m busy with other activities now, like meetings with the UCI concerning the safety of races, recordings of the sports programme Stade 2, and I’ll be supporting two amateur teams.

"I wanted to find a new goal in life, that's why I decided to finish my studies. In September, I'll start a master in Political Sciences, option Journalism. I'll still be present in the cycling world, but I realized that it will be at the other side of the fence. I met a lot of business leaders during my time with Circus-Wanty Gobert and I have a good relationship with these partners of the team. Some of them contacted me about my future. So even though I’m leaving Circus-Wanty Gobert, I’ll always be in touch with the team.

"Cycling has brought me so much, both suffering and beautiful memories. For example, I remember very well winning the combativity award in Liège at the beginning of my first Tour de France with Wanty-Gobert, in front of all fans and partners of the team. I want to thank FDJ and Circus-Wanty Gobert-Tormans for the nice years!"

Jean-François Bourlart (general manager):
" I want to thank Yoann for his involvement in the team the past couple of years. I remember his performances at the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix during his first classics campaign in our team, in 2017, but also his breakaways and offensive spirit on the roads of the Tour de France. We could always count on the courageous rider with charming character, on and off the bike. The French rider was definitely one of the essential actors in the development of the team. I’m convinced that a nice ‘second’ career is awaiting him after his life as a pro cyclist. I wish him a lot of success."

Joris Nieuwenhuis' January cyclocross program

Nieuwenhuis's Team Sunweb sent me this:

After a strong opening to his 2020-2021 cyclocross campaign, Team Sunweb are pleased to announce Joris Nieuwenhuis' January line-up. The 24 year-old Dutchman will make the World Championships at the end of the month his main focus, hear from him and head of coaching Rudi Kemna below.

Nieuwenhuis said: "I'm looking forward to the races in January. It's the month that I have been working towards in my first block of races, and it's where all of my main goals lie, so I'm really looking forward to getting into it. In December I invested a bit more in endurance than I normally would, next I will focus a bit more on cyclocross specific intervals, aiming to be in my top shape for the championships."

Team Sunweb head of coaching Rudi Kemna continued: "Joris has had a solid start to his cyclocross campaign, picking up consistent results in the races that he’s done so far. After his later finish to the road season, we planned to start off the cyclocross season a bit slower, building momentum and shape towards his main goals in January. Joris’ training is going well and after working on his endurance, we’re shifting focus to the explosiveness needed to compete for top results. Things are heading in the right direction and in this way we expect Joris to steadily build on his form in the coming weeks.”

Race program:
Hulst World Cup - 03/01/2021
Overijse World Cup - 24/01/2021
World Championships - 31/01/2021

Peloton agrees to buy Precor from Amer Sports

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News posted this:

NEW YORK (BRAIN) — Peloton has agreed to acquire Precor, one of the largest global commercial fitness equipment providers, in a transaction valued at $420 million.

Precor is currently owned by Amer Sports, the former owner of Mavic and current owner of Enve and other brands including Arc'teryx, Salomon, Wilson and Louisville Slugger.

The purchase should give Peloton a path to accelerate sales to the commercial equipment market including gyms, hotels and apartment and condo developments, while also expanding its domestic manufacturing.

The acquisition would bring Peloton 625,000 square feet of U.S. manufacturing capacity with in-house tooling and fabrication, product development, and quality assurance capabilities in Whitsett, North Carolina and Woodinville, Washington.

"Peloton plans to produce connected fitness products in the U.S. before the end of the calendar year 2021," the company said Monday. 

You can read the entire story here.

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