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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, October 13, 2021

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2020 Tour de France | 2021 Giro d'Italia

Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see. - Arthur Schopenhauer


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Bill & Carol McGann's book The Story of the Tour de France, 2020: The Tour During Covid-19, Better Later than Never is available as an audiobook here.

Marianne Vos takes victory in CX World Cup Waterloo

Here’s the report from Vos’ Team Jumbo-Visma:

Marianne Vos has won the cyclocross World Cup in Waterloo. During her first cyclocross race of the season, the 34-year-old rider from Team Jumbo-Visma Women sprinted to victory in a convincing way after an exciting battle. She also took the lead in the World Cup standings.

Marianne Vos

Marianne Vos finishes fourth at the 2020 World Road Championships. Sirotti photo

The differences were already made in the first lap. Halfway through the race, Lucinda Brand managed to create a gap with the first group, but Vos managed to close the gap soon after. After a neck-and-neck race, Vos came out on top. Brand and Denise Betsema completed an all-Dutch podium.

“I suffered terribly”, Vos said. “It went so fast. I had to push hard in every corner. Especially in the last lap, it was all or nothing. I know Lucinda pretty well and I knew she doesn’t leave much room. It was a battle to the finish. It was really nice to win here.”

Matej Mohorič and Sonny Colbrelli re-up with Bahrain Victorious

Here’s the team’s announcement:

Bahrain Victorious are pleased to announce the contract renewals of Matej Mohorič and Sonny Colbrelli in multi-year deals. Both winners of their national championships had stellar seasons in 2021.

Sonny Colbrelli

Sonny Colbrelli wins 2021 Paris-Roubaix. Sirotti photo

Mohorič secured two stage wins at the Tour de France and became only the 102nd rider to win a stage at all three grand tours: ” I’ve been a long-standing rider with this team and always trusted the project. This year I think we finally proved that we are one of the best teams in the world.

We have definitely got great support as a group of riders from all the staff, and we work hard to be here. After a great year, It’s never crossed my mind to change the environment I work in, and I’m very happy with the team and feels like a second family to me. It takes hard work to get to the level we performed at this season, and I’m confident we can continue this in the future and try and win bike races.”

Sonny Colbrelli had a monumental season, winning the first wet Paris-Roubaix in 20 years, securing the European Championship, the GC at Benelux Tour, and multiple stage wins:  “I’m happy to continue and stay in a team that is like a family to me. I’m one of the few riders wearing this jersey since 2017, the very first season, debuting in the WorldTour with Bahrain and arriving up to this stunning season. I can say I grew up with this group, and I must be more than thankful.

I’m now where I am, also due to the support and trust that I’ve always felt. Mainly, I want to thank His Highness Shaikh Nasser for the ongoing support in good and bad times. Feeling his faith, it’s something that makes me so proud. I’m honoured to continue wearing this team’s jersey for more years, aiming to take further prestigious successes together.”Milan Erzen, Team Managing Director: “We are really happy to have Matej and Sonny remain part of the Bahrain Victorious family. They have shown incredible dedication this season which shows from their amazing results. We hope to continue working hard and having more success in the coming seasons.”

Georg Steinhauser will join EF Education-NIPPO in 2022

The team sent me this update:

Steinhauser is coming off of another stellar season, boasting a third place at U-23 Il Lombardia, second place on GC at the Tour of Bulgaria, a stage win at the Giro Ciclistico della Valle d’Acosta-Mont Blanc, and a second place on the final stage at the Tour de l’Avenir.

Though only 19-years-old, he also lists among his race results a stage win at the Oberosterreich Juniorenrundfahrt, the GC win at the Ain Bugey Valromey Tour, and the King of the Mountains jersey at the LVM Saarland Trofeo.

Steinhauser's diverse skills make him a well-rounded stage racer. “I go quite well over the mountains. My time trials are not too bad. I prefer long and hard races, especially stage races. I like that they don't depend on just one moment and I think they suit me better as a rider.”

Not only has Steinhauser committed himself to professional cycling, he will also continue to be a full-time student through the entire 2022 season. He has had to learn to balance his ongoing metal work apprenticeship with racing and training. “I work everyday from 7am to 12:30pm. In the afternoon, I’m out on the bike. That’s how I manage it. It’s a bit busy,” he says matter-of-factly.

Team CEO Jonathan Vaughters is not only impressed with Steinhauser’s results so far, but he also sees a lot of growth in the young rider’s future. “Georg is, I think, potentially the most talented Under-23 rider in the world right now,” Vaughters says. “That doesn’t mean that he’s the best Under-23 rider in the world right now. The thing to understand about Georg is that his father was a professional cyclist and his father was very insistent that Georg finish his schooling before he dedicates himself to cycling which is actually very rare in the world of cycling. Georg has been sort of a part-time cyclist and has a very limited race schedule because he’s had to complete his trade school. I basically came to an agreement with his agent and his dad that we are going to allow him to complete his studies. Of course he’s going to race with the team, but there are going to be moments where if he needs to have a little time away to complete schoolwork, and we’re going to work with him on that .”

Steinhauser realizes that his full schedule may not have allowed him to reach his full potential yet but, he says, “I’m proud that I could achieve so many goals this year even though I’m working half the day and training half the day and still be able to ride at the front of a race.”

Vaughters agrees, saying, “Don’t underestimate him. I think maybe his talent will be a little bit slow in surfacing because of the fact that he’s still working on being a student but make no mistake. I think he ends up being on a slower trajectory but I think he ends up being one of the top stage racers in the world.”

In some ways, coming to EF will make racing and training easier for Steinhauser. “Everything will be way more professional and organized than it is at the Continental level. Also, I never really thought about things like nutrition. I’ve just been riding on feeling. I think I can learn a lot in this area.”

Learning is important to the young German. He worked hard in school to become fluent in English, telling his teachers, “The only thing I really needed in school was English. Math, I didn’t need that complicated stuff but English I had to use so it made sense for me to learn.”

Continuing to learn is among his main goals for the 2022 season. “I’m very excited to ride beside my teammates and learn from them. I want to make as few mistakes as possible. Even in the moments when things aren’t going well, I still see the good and find opportunities to learn. I want to improve from year to year, from season to season, but it’s definitely a goal to win races.”

This deep appreciation for learning and reflection is part of the reason why Steinhauser wanted to come to EF. “The name EF says it all: Education First.”

Another reason why he signed for the pink team? “This team is about innovation. They are not working with old technology and gear. Instead, they’re racing gravel and being open-minded. I don’t feel like you can compare them to ‘normal’ teams. With EF, I feel like I have a new point of view of cycling.”

We love your perspective, Georg, and we can’t wait for next season.

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