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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Thursday, September 15, 2022

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2021 Tour de France | 2022 Giro d'Italia

A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines. - Frank Lloyd Wright


Story of the Tour de France Volume 2

Bill and Carol McGann's book The Story of the Tour de France, Vol 2: 1976 - 2018 is available in print, Kindle eBook & Audiobook versions. To get your copy, just click on the Amazon link on the right.

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Tour de Luxembourg stage two reports

We posted the race report from stage winner Matteo Trentin's UAE Team Emirates with the results.

Here's the report from second-place Florian Sénéchal's Team Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl team:

For the second day in a row, Florian Sénéchal was in the mix at the Tour de Luxembourg. After Tuesday the small peloton he was part of missed out on catching the lone attacker by just a few seconds and he finished fifth, this time the stage concluded in a bunch sprint and our rider featured again in the fight for victory.

Matteo Trentin wins Tour of Luxembourg stage two.

The story of the stage unfolded on the fast finishing straight in Schifflange, a small town that featured on the route for the sixth time in the last decade. A rider attacked with 500 meters to go, our team pulled hard to reel him in, and Florian – who was the one to nullify this attack – still had enough left to sprint and take runner-up behind Matteo Trentin (UAE Team Emirates), less than half a wheel separating him from the win, while teammate Davide Ballerini rounded out the podium.

“I’m disappointed, because I am quite sure I could have won if not for that attack that I had to close. When Oliveira went with about 350 meters to go once Jannik peeled off the front, I had to pull hard to shut down that move. I did it, but Trentin came out of my wheel and passed me in the last meters. It won’t be easy in the next stages, but we’ll try again”, Florian said.

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Connor Swift signs with INEOS Grenadiers

The team sent me this release:

Connor Swift, the former British road race champion, will become an INEOS
Grenadier in 2023 after signing a two-year deal with the team.

The experienced 26-year-old from Yorkshire, who won the British national road title in 2018, will be stepping up to race for a World Tour team for the first time and joining his cousin Ben Swift at the Grenadiers.

Connor Swift wins the 2021 Tro Bro Leon.

Swift’s versatility has seen him complete the last three editions of the Tour de France while simultaneously proving his quality in one-day racing, including an impressive victory at Tro-Bro Leon in 2021.

Swift’s signing will bolster the Grenadiers' Classics squad while at the same time
adding further support to the team’s general classification ambitions, both in one-week stage races and at Grand Tours.

Connor Swift said: “I am super excited to be joining the INEOS Grenadiers. The
way the team is evolving at the minute, with the next wave of young guys coming
through and the dynamic approach to racing, is really refreshing and it will be special to be a part of the journey.

“This is a team I have always looked up to with many riders who have inspired me. To be pulling on that INEOS jersey next season, taking that step up and getting stuck into the races with these guys is something I am really looking forward to.”

Deputy Team Principal Rod Ellingworth said: “It’s great to have Connor join the
Grenadiers at such a critical point in his development. He’s already shown his talent in some big races so he’ll add significant depth to the team and I am confident he’ll be an excellent fit for the team and our ambitions for the future. His path to this point of his career has been a consistent progression and if he maintains that upward trajectory then I have no doubt that we will see some great racing from him.”


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Team BikeExchange-Jayco men head to Belgium for a block of one-day races

Here’s the team’s updated schedule:

Team BikeExchange-Jayco men head to Belgium this week for a block of five one-day races starting tomorrow, Wednesday 14th September, at Grand Prix de Wallonie.

With a race every few days, the squad plan to rotate riders in and out, bringing in a mixture of fast men and powerhouses suited to the varying terrains the races will present.

Tour de France stage winner Dylan Groenewegen will lead the team in three races that have the potential to come down to a bunch sprint, while Vuelta a España stage winner Kaden Groves will give the team a strong option in Gooikse Pijl, with Dion Smith also taking up lead duties in the opening race of the block.

Dylan Groenewegen wins 2022 Tour de France stage three. Sirotti photo

Team BikeExchange-Jayco Riders:
Jack Bauer (NZL)
Sam Bewley (NZL)
Dylan Groenewgen (NED)
Kaden Groves (AUS)
Chris Juul-Jensen (DEN)
Alex Konychev (ITA)
Kell O’Brien (AUS)
Elmar Reinders (NED)
Dion Smith (NZL)
Campbell Stewart (NZL)
Marceli Boguslawski (POL) – Stagiaire rider
Anders Foldager (DAN) – Stagiaire rider

Dylan Groenewegen:
“I’m feeling in good shape after GP Fourmies, and am looking forward to this block of races. I’ve enjoyed success at Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen before, where I’ve won and been on the podium a few times, and I’ve been close at Primus Classic too, so we’re heading to those races expecting bunch sprints and I hope to be able to fight for top results.

"We’ve got a strong group for these races and we’ll be ready to give it everything.”

Dave McPartland (Sport Director):
“For Wallonie we’ll go all in for Dion, and at Kampioenschap, Primus and Gooikse we’ll have Dylan for the first two of those three races and then Kaden will come in for Gooikse.

"The plan is simple: to ride for the sprinter at each of those races. We think the races will be quite controlled and we’re expecting bunch sprints, but if it ends up being the case that the weather plays a part, or the racing gets really aggressive, then we’ve got a team there with a solid classics base who are suited to this style of racing.

"At Omloop van het Houtland Dylan will come back in, and we’ll go all in again for him there.”

Grand Prix de Wallonie, race details:
Wednesday, 14th September: Blegny to Citadelle de Namur, 199.7km

Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen race details:
Friday, 16th September: Koolskamp to Koolskamp, 195.3km

Primus Classic, race details:
Saturday, 17th September: Brakel to Haacht, 197.2km

Gooikse Pijl, race details:
Sunday, 18th September: Halle to Gooik, 199km

Omloop van het Houtland, race details:
Wednesday, 21st September: Eernegem to Lichtervelde, 196.4km


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Team DSM's upcoming racing schedule

The team sent me this:

Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen: SEP 16

Roy Curvers - Team DSM coach:
"The Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen is a typical autumnal Belgian race, which is raced hard often with not much control in the bunch. Taking on several laps of the local circuit around Koolskamp, we expect the pace to be on from the flag drop and that's why we have to make sure we are present in all important moves. We have several strong riders who can cover those moves and give us a chance for a result if a break makes it to the line, while that also allows us to keep the card of our sprint finisher, Sam, in our hands until the end."

Sam Welsford wins stage four of the 2021 Santos Festival of Cycling. Sarah Reed photo

Line-up:
Asbjørn Kragh Andersen (DEN)
Cees Bol (NED)
Axel Källberg (FIN)
Niklas Märkl (GER)
Tim Naberman (NED)
Casper Pedersen (DEN)
Sam Welsford (AUS)

AG Tour de la Semois: SEP 16 - 17

Huub Duijn - Team DSM coach:
"We have good memories from AG Tour de la Semois after winning the overall title last season, albeit with a different race name. It's a nice two-day stage race in the south part of the Belgian Ardennes. Both stages feature lots of climbing, and with the younger squad we have then we want to ride on the attack. It's a good opportunity for our youngsters to race aggressively in this 2.2 level UCI race."

Line-up:
Francesca Barale (ITA)
Megan Jastrab (USA)
Charlotte Kool (NED)
Elise Uijen (NED)
Lorena Wiebes (NED)

Primus Classic: SEP 17

Rudi Kemna - Team DSM coach:
"With several short punchy hills and even some cobbled sections, Primus Classic can be a hard day in the saddle; especially if the peloton are faced with poor weather. We head to the race with a strong mix of our classic and sprint blocks, and we have several options to play at the finish depending on how the race pans out. We want to ride in an aggressive way to maximise our chances during the race."

Line-up:
Asbjørn Kragh Andersen (DEN)
Cees Bol (NED)
Patrick Eddy (AUS)
Nils Eekhoff (NED)
Niklas Märkl (GER)
Tim Naberman (NED)
Casper Pedersen (DEN)

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