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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Wednesday, August 16, 2023

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2022 Tour de France | 2023 Giro d'Italia

Men in general are quick to believe that which they wish to be true. - Julius Caesar

Cycling's 50 Triumphs and Tragedies

Les Woodland's book Cycling's 50 Triumphs and Tragedies: The rise and fall of bicycle racing's champions 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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Team dsm-firmenich allows Harm Vanhoucke to leave team

Here’s the team’s news release:

Team dsm-firmenich allow Harm Vanhoucke to continue career elsewhere due to differences in sporting ambition. Vanhoucke thus transfers to another team with immediate effect.

“We understand that Harm wants to be a finisher to search for his own results,” said Team dsm-firmenich head coach Rudi Kemna. “Whilst we no longer believe that this is the right role for Harm in the team, we of course understand Harm’s position and don’t want to hold him back in this with the new opportunity that he has, so we have thus decided to allow him to continue his career elsewhere. It’s good that we could have such open conversations about this and come to a mutual agreement on the next steps, and we sincerely wish him the best with what’s next.”

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And here's where Vanhoucke ended up, at Team Lotto Dstny

Here's the annoucement from the team:

Harm Vanhoucke will be part of Lotto Dstny again from Tuesday 15 August onwards. The 26-year-old rider signed a contract with the Belgian formation until the end of 2024.

Harm Vanhoucke

Vanhoucke is a familiar face at Lotto Dstny. As a youngster he raced with the U23 team, before signing a contract with the professional team in 2018. During that time Vanhoucke showed his climbing legs with amongst others two third places in stages of the Giro (2021 and 2020) and he was close to his first professional victory in the Sibiu Cycling Tour (2022).

Last year he switched to Team DSM, but by mutual agreement the rider will now return to Lotto Dstny where he signed a contract until the end of 2024.

“I got warm memories of my time in this team”, says Vanhoucke, “and I’m very happy to return to this warm family. I'm making a fresh start here and want to be the rider I was before."

“In recent months I spoke to many riders of the team,” he continues, “I kept following Lotto Dstny and you just feel the team has taken some nice steps while they continue to invest in the future.”

His ambition at Lotto Dstny remains intact. “I want to show myself in smaller one-week stage races, such as the Sibiu Tour or the Deutschland Tour and help the team in the Ardennes Classics. I get on well with Maxim (Van Gils). He has made a lot of progress this year and showed great things. I’m looking forward to do my part and help both Maxim and Andreas (Kron) in their races.”

Sports manager Kurt Van de Wouwer is happy with the return of Harm Vanhoucke. “We know the capacities of Harm”, says Van de Wouwer, “he climbs well and it was important to strengthen our team in that area. Just like before, he will be allowed to take his chance in smaller stage races and he will also have a supporting role in the races with Andreas (Kron) and Maxim (Van Gils). He also performs well in a Grand Tour. We all remember the Giro of 2022 where he played an important role in the victory of Thomas De Gendt. We like to see things like that again and we are convinced that he can show us even more in the upcoming months and the following year.”

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Team Jumbo-Visma reports on Vuelta a Burgos stage one

Here's the team's update:

Team Jumbo-Visma has made an excellent start to the Vuelta a Burgos. The yellow and black brigade brought leader Primož Roglič safely across the line and saw Edoardo Affini sprint to third place in the streets of Burgos. It was Roglič's first race since winning the Giro d'Italia.

Juan Sebastian Molano wins the first stage.

The first stage of the Spanish stage race took the peloton from Villalba de Duero to Burgos, where the riders arrived after 161 kilometres. A lead group of five riders quickly broke away from the peloton and opened up a three-minute lead. Twelve kilometres from the finish, the quintet's adventure was over.

Team Jumbo-Visma kept Roglič out of trouble throughout the day and brought Affini into the final kilometre in a good position. The Italian entered the sprint early and eventually settled for third place. "The guys did a good job of putting me in the front. Unfortunately, I lost a few places at the roundabout and had to start the sprint a little too far back. I did my best to get a good result, and I think I succeeded”, Affini said.

The Italian said the team got through the day without any problems. "The lead group formed relatively quickly, and then the guys from Team UAE took control. We tried to be vigilant all day for possible breakaways or other things. In the end, we all crossed the line safely.”

Roglič returned to racing three months after winning the Giro d'Italia. The Slovenian sees the Burgos stage race as perfect preparation for the Vuelta a España, which starts in a week and a half. "It's good to be back in the peloton. I've been training hard lately, but now it's time to race again and find my rhythm.”

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Anthon Charmig signs with Team Astana Qazaqstan

Here's the team's announcement:

25-year-old Danish rider Anthon Charmig is going to join Astana Qazaqstan Team for the following two seasons of 2024 and 2025.

Anthon Charmig wins stage two of the 2022 Tour of Oman.

“It’s a very exciting step for me to join Astana Qazaqstan Team from the next year. When the team showed its interest in me very early in the season, we had some talks, and the management presented their plan for me and for the team as a whole. It felt like it is the right place for me to continue to develop, and now I am confident that I will join Astana. I am ready to provide my help to the leaders, but also to get the chance to chase some personal results. The team has a great history of developing and succeeding with Danish riders, and I am looking forward to hopefully be the next one, as well as get to work with the experienced staff and riders in the team”, – said Anthon Charmig.

Anthon Charmig is young and very promising climber, who can both, fighting for a win for himself and helping the leaders. His first big result came back in 2020 when he took the silver medal in the road race at the Under 23 European Championships. He turned pro in 2022, immediately showing a great potential with a solid stage win and the best young rider jersey at the Tour of Oman.

With a second place in the Sazka Tour and several Top-10 results at the Tour of Oman (5th place), Saudi Tour (7th place), Tour de Hongrie (9th place) and Tour of Denmark (10th) place in his first year as a pro Anthon proved to have a strong potential as a GC rider too.

This year Anthon Charmig rode the Tour de France for the first time.

“Anthon is very interesting rider, and I am curious about his potential progress in cycling. He had a strong start of his professional career and I hope that in our team he will keep on growing in the same way. So far Anthon showed he can be really good in the small stage races, but also, he already has a Tour de France experience, so we can consider him as a helper for the leaders in the Grand Tours. So, I believe, this signing could bring our team some more strengthen in the mountains and stage races”, – said Alexandr Vinokurov, General Manager of Astana Qazaqstan Team.

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