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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Tuesday, November 3, 2020

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2020 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must live. - Charles Bukowski

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Vuelta GC leader Richard Carapaz looks to the race's third week

Here's his team INEOS Grenadiers' post:

A spirited ride saw the INEOS Grenadiers man take back 10 seconds on nearest rival Primoz Roglic on the steep slopes of the Alto de l’Angliru.

Richard Carapaz

Richard Carapaz finished stage twelve leading the GC.

The race is set to resume on Tuesday, with a 33.7-kilometre time trial test likely to shake up the GC. The Ecuadorian braved the foul weather of the second rest day to take a look at the key TT course.

Carapaz also took the time to reflect on the first 12 stages of the event.

He told INEOSGrenadiers.com: “I’m going to take the rest day really easy, because the time trial tomorrow is really hard. I have prepared the best I can for that, staying as calm as possible, and I think I’m going to do well in it. But in the last week there are still a lot of kilometres left to ride and a lot of mountains to climb.”

Carapaz has never been outside of the top three so far in Spain, taking the lead on stage six with some attacking riding and spending four days in the red jersey.

On the opening phase of the race he added: “The first week was pretty tough already in the medium mountains, and it started to show who the favourites were in the race. I had a good opportunity to get into red jersey early on, then we lost it again, but it kind of made the race much more exciting and fun, with the jersey going between me and Roglic. It’s been a battle for the jersey and it’s been good for the viewers to watch. I have had a good team to help me fight for the Vuelta.”

With the top four riders all within 35 seconds, the final week is shaping up to be a thrilling one. Carapaz is well aware of his rivals. He continued: “Well to be honest, a lot of the riders here have a lot of Grand Tour experience, and clearly (Hugh) Carthy has a lot of potential. On Angliru he showed that he was strong. Things will become clearer over the final week – we will see where we stand, and if we can win the Vuelta.”

Team Deceuninck-Quick Step comments on the 2021 Tour de France route

Here's the team's post:

For the fifth time in history, the Tour de France will start from Bretagne, where the puncheurs will have two opportunities to shine and fight for the yellow jersey in as many days, on Côte de la Fosse aux Loups and Mûr-de-Bretagne, short but explosive climbs that have the potential to create some interesting gaps. A 27km-long individual time trial in the Mayenne department, some flat stages where the crosswinds could play an important role and a mountain top finish to Tignes will round out what promises to be a spectacular opening week.

2021 Tour de France map

Map of the 2021 Tour de France

A double ascent of the fearsome Mont Ventoux on stage 11 and a trip to Andorra will be the highlights of the race’s second week, before two mountain top finishes – to Col de Portet and Luz Ardiden – and an undulating 31km stage against the clock, all crammed in the final days of the event. The curtain will be drawn again in Paris, on the famous Champs-Élysées, where this year Sam Bennett took the spoils, sealing his superb victory in the points classification and netting Deceuninck – Quick-Step’s 42nd Tour de France stage victory.

“The start of the race will sure be an exciting one, with some stages suited to Julian and others where we could be in for strong echelons. Looking over the whole parcours, we can notice there will be plenty of opportunities to show ourselves, and this is without taking into account the numerous sprint stages”, said Deceuninck – Quick-Step sports director Tom Steels. “Even for the time trials we have guys capable of getting good results. The Mont Ventoux stage and the ones where we’ll go over 2000 meters promise to be very demanding and should play an important role in the final outcome. Overall, it’s a route we like very much.”

Team Sunweb sign Tobias Lund Andresen and Gianmarco Garofoli to Development program

The team sent me this:

Team Sunweb are excited to announce the signings of talented duo Tobias Lund Andresen and Gianmarco Garofoli for the 2021 season, with both riders contracted with the team until the end of 2022.

Bursting onto the scene in 2019, Lund Andresen finished second at Ronde van Vlaanderen behind his teammate, his first ever international junior race. A few weeks later he would go on to take a resounding solo win at E3 Harelbeke, highlighting his strength and power as a future classics rider that has a fast finish. Having not raced in the opening months of 2020, Lund Andresen had an incredible return to racing after lockdown; not finishing lower than seventh place in any stage or race that he competed in during August. Taking a total of twelve wins in 2020, including the Danish junior road race title, all stages and the overall GC win at Visegrad 4 Juniors, plus the junior European madison title on the track, Lund Andresen is looking forward to continuing his development with Team Sunweb.

Andresen said: “I can’t wait to officially join Development Team Sunweb next year. I think that the idea of living near each other as a team at the Keep Challenging Center, is the future within the sport. That was one of the main reasons that made me want to join the team. I think being able to live together with my teammates and having all the support close by, can only strengthen us as a team. Looking at Team Sunweb, I would describe the team as “professional”. They’re a team that supports the riders 100 percent, and have amazing people and facilities which help to create the perfect environment for development. I have no doubts that I will fit in great with the team and I can’t wait to get to know the other riders and race with them next year.”

Team Sunweb head of coaching Rudi Kemna added: “Tobias is an incredible talent, he’s the first rider ever to win every stage and the GC at a Nations Cup race at Visegrad 4 Juniors. In 2019 as a first year he also took great results at Ronde van Vlaanderen and E3 Harelbeke and this year he’s confirmed his abilities with more strong results. We see him as a classics rider but also a very versatile and all-round talent as he can compete for results in bunch sprints and has a good TT on him too.”

Garofoli had immediate success on the Italian scene in his first year as a junior in 2019, picking up two podiums before taking a win in only his third race. His string of good results continued on home soil, culminating in a very strong solo win at the Italian national championships; an impressive feat for someone in their first year of junior racing. A good rider when the road goes uphill, Garofoli would further show his abilities on the shorter climbs with success at Trofeo Buffoni before finishing fifth in the road race on the incredibly difficult parcours at the World championships in Yorkshire. Like most, 2020 has seen Garofoli’s racing calendar shortened but since the season restart in August he’s tasted success in two Italian races, alongside several podium places including a silver medal in the Italian national time trial.

On joining Development Team Sunweb, Garofoli said: “I am very excited to join Development Team Sunweb next year. I am happy with the trust that the team have given me and I want to show all my worth in the races I do with them. After this difficult year and shorter season, I want to start next year in the best possible way immediately and get good results as a team. I want to grow steadily and improve my physical skills and I know that Development Team Sunweb can give me the right tools to do that and express myself on the bike.”

Team Sunweb head of coaching Rudi Kemna said: “Gianmarco had an extremely good first year as a junior in 2019, where he took a lot of impressive victories including a fantastic win at the Italian national championships. He’s a good climber that has a big engine and can handle a tough parcours – as he showed with his result in Yorkshire. Gianmarco is also a really smart cyclist and knows how to ride in a finale which is a very good trait to have. We’re not sure yet where his limitations are on the longer climbs are as he’s not had a chance to prove himself yet on that type of course, but with our team of coaches and experts, we’ll develop him to the best of his ability.”

Shimano bike-related sales down 4% YTD

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News posted this:

OSAKA, Japan (BRAIN) — Shimano Inc. sales in its bicycle segment were down in the first nine months of 2020, but the company has revised up its full-year earnings and revenue projections due to greater use of bicycles globally during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sales in the bike segment were down 3.8% in the first nine months of 2020, but the Japanese company still managed to increase its operating income by 4.9% during the period.

Shimano's sales in its bike division — which is 77% of its business — totaled 205 billion yen ($1.96 billion) in the first three quarters, down from 213 billion yen in the same period in 2019. The segment's income for the period was 44 billion yen, up from 42 billion yen last year.

Shimano revised up its forecast for the full fiscal year. It increased its net sales forecast by 5.7%, to 363 billion yen. Operating income was revised up 21%, to 68 billion yen.

Shimano said the revision was "based on factors including greater utilization of bicycles as an easy form of exercise and a mode of transportation with a low risk of infection, fishing garnering attention as a form of outdoor leisure with the rising popularity of fishing leading to greater demand, and the appreciation of Asian currencies during the third quarter of FY2020 resulting in a decrease in non-operating income."

You can read the entire story here

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