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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Monday, November 8, 2021

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2021 Tour de France | 2021 Giro d'Italia

Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city. – George Burns


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Les Woodland's book Paris-Roubaix, The Inside Story: All the bumps of cycling's cobbled classic is available as an audiobook here.

Men's European Cyclocross Championships reports

We posted the report from third-place Michael Vanthourenhout's Pauwels-Bingoal cycling team with the results.

Here's the report from winner Lars van der Haar's Baloise Trek Lions team:

Amazing European Championships for the Baloise Trek Lions on the Col du VAM in Drenthe, the Netherlands. Lars, Lucinda and Shirin rode to the European title in their category.

Lucinda Brand showed off with a demonstration among the elite women. She broke away from an elite group early in the race and raced irresistibly to her first-ever European title.

Lucinda Brand

Lucinda Brand wins the Elite Women's race.

On Sunday afternoon, Shirin van Anrooij also immediately pulled out of the box in the women's U23 race. Our young Dutchwoman was able to hold off top favorite Puck Pieterse and drove radiantly to the European jersey.

Lars van der Haar provided the icing on the cake on Sunday and a great surprise. In the second half of the match he charged Quinten Hermans. Going into the final lap, our lion drove off at a gear to which no one had an answer yet. A euphoric Lars crowed victory on the Col du VAM. Toon aerts finished nicely fourth.

Lars van der Haar

Lars van der Haar is the Elite Mens Euro Champ.

In the men's U23 category, Thibau competed for the European title until the final meters. It was only in the sprint that he had to give in to Ryan Kamp. Thibau returned home with a nice bronze medal. World champion Pim finished in 10th place.

Israel’s president meets with Team Israel Start-Up Nation riders

Here’s the team’s press release:

Israeli President Isaac Herzog met with the Israel Start-Up Nation riders at a reception ceremony at his residence in Jerusalem this Sunday.

Chris Froome, Guy Niv, and the rest of the ISN riders all shook hands with President Herzog who afterward talked to the team, congratulating the riders on their performances and their work as ambassadors for the country.

Chris Froome

Chris Froome shakes hands with Israel's President Herzog.

“We welcome the team whole-heartedly and we bless you for representing Jerusalem and Israel in the world of cycling. This team shows incredible professionalism, and we are honored to have you all here today. We are very proud to see the team formatting into a world-class team and we believe that you will only continue to get better and get more results next year,” President Herzog told the riders.

At the reception, ISN co-owner, Sylvan Adams, also pointed out how important is it to have this Israeli homecoming camp take place.

“It’s very important for us to bring the team to Israel to introduce the riders to our home country in order to make them understand what Israel really is, as we are all ambassadors for the nation. We don’t have a sponsor like other teams, our brand is Israel, and we carry the name Israel everywhere we go. Another mission of ours is to help make the world a better place and we try to use the sport to build bridges and to make new friends around the world,” Adams said.

For four-time Tour de France winner, Froome, this is his first trip as a tourist to Israel, and it’s a visit he has enjoyed immensely these first days of the camp. He then explained how much it meant to him to meet the next generation of Israeli riders this past Saturday.

“In this team, one of our biggest visions is to inspire the new generation of Israeli cyclists. Yesterday, when we met our young fans, it was clear to see how they were all dreaming of becoming professional riders. You could see their eyes sparkle when they met the team, and to witness that vision of ours being realized right now is such a joy,” Froome told President Herzog at the reception.

One rider who has taken the journey from a hopeful Israeli kid to the biggest stage in the world is Israel Start-Up Nation’s own Guy Niv. “I am the kid who fulfilled the dream that this team was founded for. My Bar Mitzvah gift was the opportunity to see the Tour de France riders on the side of the road, and 13 years later, I became the first Israeli to compete in the Tour. This is the message we are sending to all the children of Israel: It is possible,” 27-year-old Niv said.

On Monday, the ISN Homecoming Camp continues as the team moves from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv.

Eolo-Kometa’s Arturo Grávalos has successful brain tumor removal surgery

Here’s the team’s post:

EOLO-KOMETA Cycling Team rider Arturo Grávalos is facing the recovery of the surgical intervention to which he was submitted this Thursday November 4 to remove a brain tumour that was detected several weeks ago.
The surgery, carried out at the Hospital Clínico Universitario Lozano Blesa in Zaragoza by the neurosurgery team headed by Dr. Clara María del Río-Pérez, was complex and lasted several hours, but it went smoothly and the final assessment of the doctors was satisfactory.

Grávalos, who this season is facing his first season in the professional ranks, took part in his last competition in the Circuto de Getxo,, at the beginning of August. The cyclist then began to suffer several episodes of severe headaches.

A wide range of medical tests, carried out as quickly as possible, confirmed the existence of a brain tumour. During the follow-ups that were carried out over the following weeks, the doctors noticed that the tumour had increased in size and the need to operate on the rider as soon as possible was established.

At the express wish of the rider and his entourage, the situation has been kept discreet, while awaiting the surgical intervention and the subsequent start of the rehabilitation process, two moments for which the doctors had advised him to be as stress-free and calm as possible.

“We would like to publicly thank all the professionals at Lozano Blesa for their attention and care, and especially the great work done by the whole team led by Dr. del Río”, say the family of the brilliant rider from La Rioja, who still has to remain in hospital for some time.

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