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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Thursday, February 27, 2020

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2019 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. - Frederick Douglass

Tour de France: the Inside Story

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UAE Tour stage four team reports

We posted the report from stage winner Dylan Groenewegen's Jumbo-Visma team with the results.

Here's the report from second-place Ferando Gaviria's UAE-Team Emirates:

Fernando Gaviria sprinted to a runner-up spot on stage 4 of the UAE Tour from Zabeel Park to Dubai City Walk (173k).

UAE Team Emirates worked to bring Gaviria to the front on the fast approach dropping him off to take the last technical bend at 500 metres close to the front before the sprint opened up.

With a world class sprinting field present in UAE, it was Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo Visma) who took the spoils with Gaviria just half a wheel behind the Dutchman. Gaviria will now look to Stage 6 which will be the last showdown for the fast-men.

Dylan Groenewegen

Dylan Groenewegen takes the fourth stage. 

Tadej Pogačar remains second overall and wears the white jersey as the leader of the young rider classification.

Stage 5 tomorrow will see the race return to the hills as the riders go from Al Ain to Jebel Hafeet (162k) which will likely decide the overall classification.

Gaviria : “It was a fast stage with a tail wind for most of the day. The team worked well together and were always by my side. We went for the win and we came very close. The level of sprinters here is very high so I’m pleased with my result and it gives me confidence for the next sprint to know that the form is there.”

And third-place Pascal Ackermann's Bora-hansgrohe team send me this:

The fourth stage of this year’s UAE Tour returned to a flat sprint finish. Unfortunately, the day began with the abandonment of Emanuel Buchmann who did not continue the race as a precautionary measure because of the bruises and abrasions he suffered in yesterday’s crash.

The 173 km between Dubai’s Zabeel Park and the famous Dubai City Walk led mostly through the desert with two escapees leading the way for most of the day. When the last escapee, William Clarke, was caught with 7 km to go, the sprinter teams started to prepare the finale, affected by strong winds which made the last kilometres very hectic.

Brought into position by his BORA-hansgrohe teammates Michael Schwarzmann and Rüdiger Selig, Pascal Ackermann started his sprint from the backwheel of Sam Bennett but was blocked in in the closing metres, taking third on the line behind Dylan Groenewegen and Fernando Gaviria.

From the Finish Line:
"I started my sprint from the 7th position which was maybe a little bit too far behind, that's why I was blocked in in the end. I can still be happy with my form, I'm now looking forward to more sprint finishes here at the UAE Tour." – Pascal Ackermann

"On today’s flat terrain everyone expected a sprint finale. The stage was still not easy and all riders had to be really concentrated due to strong winds. Like in the opening stage, our goal was to set Pascal for the sprint, unfortunately he was blocked in and couldn’t find clean air in the final metres. We are still happy with the third place since the competition here at the UAE Tour is very high. Regarding Emanuel’s abandonment I can say that his injuries are not serious but we decided that it would be better for him to fly home early and get some rest before he continues preparing the next big goals." – Enrico Poitschke, Head Sports Director

Astana's roster for Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

Here's the team's update:

Astana Pro Team will take part in the UCI WorldTour classic race Omloop Het Nieuwsblad Elite, which will open the season of the spring classics this Saturday on February 29th.

Team's roster: Alex Aranburu, Manuele Boaro, Laurens De Vreese, Fabio Felline, Yevgeniy Gidich, Dmitriy Gruzdev, Hugo Houle.

Laurens De vreese

Laurens De Vreese wlll be at the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. Sirotti photo

Sports directors in race: Stefano Zanini and Bruno Cenghialta.

Garmin revenues increase 18% for Q4, with fitness up 34%

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News sent me this update:

OLATHE, Kan. (BRAIN) — Garmin Ltd. total revenue increased 18% in the fourth quarter with the fitness division — which includes Garmin's cycling products — increasing 34% year-over-year.

For 2019, Garmin experienced consolidated revenue growth of 12% overal and 22% for fitness, which was buoyed by the acquisition of Dutch indoor smart trainer company Tacx last February, and advanced wearables. Gross margin was 48% and operating margin 20%, resulting in 26% operating income growth.

"We entered 2020 with a great lineup of recently introduced products with more on the way," said Cliff Pemble, president and chief executive officer of Garmin. "We are excited about the future because each business segment offers unique growth opportunities for 2020 and beyond."

Fourth-quarter total revenue was $1.1 billion, with fitness, aviation, marine and outdoor collectively increasing 24% over last year's quarter. That beat expected projection by 8.9%. For the year, consolidated revenue was $3.8 billion, with fitness, aviation, marine and outdoor collectively rising 18% over 2018.

You can read the entire story here.

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