Tour, Giro and Vuelta… what’s happening? Giro and Vuelta to run at the same time – Top Story. Vuelta in November and Tour of Portugal to run. Other news: Gianni Bugno is in hospital, European Champs postponed, Bretagne Classic to continue, Sagan, Pogacar, Valverde and Meurisse all talk. Team CCC in trouble, Lefevere keeping quiet, Jumbo-Visma prepares for Tour, cyclo-cross this winter, Vingegaard contract, Zwift’s Tour for All, France to pay €50 for bike repairs, UAE Team Emirates sign Juan Ayuso, the Wolfpack playlists and Scicon launches masks. Keep safe.
TOP STORY: Giro and Vuelta Overlap in New Calendar
If it is still possible to race this autumn, then the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España will partly overlap, according to the Spanish sports newspaper AS, based on a leaked calendar. Some Classics will also take place during the Grand Tours.
The start of the Tour de France is, at the moment, set for August 29 and the teams have been told by ASO to prepare for this date. The French stage race will run until September 20. After that there is room for the World championships and the BinckBank Tour. According to AS, the Giro d’Italia could start on October 3. During these weeks the calendar gets very busy, because Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Amstel Gold Race, Gent-Wevelgem, Dwars door Vlaanderen and the Tour of Flanders are also planned.
The Vuelta should then start on October 20, with a finish on November 8. That means an overlap of Giro and Vuelta from October 20 to 25. Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Lombardy are scheduled for November 1 and 14 respectively. For the time being, however, it is only rumour. The UCI will only publish a new calendar until Tuesday.
New cycling calendar 2020 according to AS:
Aug 1: Strade Bianche
Aug 5-9: Tour of Poland
Aug 8: Milan-San Remo
Aug 12 to 16: Dauphiné
21 to 23 Aug: National championships
Aug 25: GP Plouay
29 Aug to 20 Sep: Tour de France
Sep 8 to Sep 14: Tirreno-Adriatico
20 to 27 Sep: World Championships
Sep 29: Flèche Wallonne
Sep 29 to Oct 4: BinckBank Tour
3 October to 25 October: Giro d’Italia
October 4: Liège-Bastogne-Liège
October 10: Amstel Gold Race
October 11: Gent-Wevelgem
October 14: Dwars door Vlaanderen
October 18: Ronde van Vlaanderen
October 20 to November 8: Vuelta a España
November 1: Paris-Roubaix
November 14: Tour of Lombardy.
Giro and Vuelta at the same time?
Weather No Problem to the Vuelta in November
Vuelta a España boss, Javier Guillén, is not afraid that the Tour of Spain will have a low quality field due to the possible bad weather so late in the year. “The teams themselves have asked to extend the UCI calendar through the end of November.”
“That invites me to think that the bad weather will not stop riders from starting in the Vuelta,” he told Velonews. Temperatures in Spain can reach as high as 20ºC in November, so expectations are positive. The mountains in the 2020 Vuelta are not as high as the Tour or the Giro. Guillén pointed out. “But we have also climbed L’Angliru many times with bad weather. It never takes away that you can have rain on a mountain day. Last year the hail storm in Andorra was historic. In any case, we do not expect temperatures below freezing. And if you do, you can dress accordingly.” We should know by Tuesday when the UCI unveils its new calendar.
Chris Horner on L’Angliru in 2013:
Volta a Portugal Wants to be First Race of the ‘New Season’
The Tour of Portugal may well be the next race on the calendar. According to the Portuguese newspaper O Jogo, the national government is studying the possibility of the race being run on its original dates of July 29 to August 8.
The local federation, the regional authorities and the cycling teams will discuss how this will be achieved. “We are continuing the country’s recovery process and we have already made a proposal to the government for this race,” explains Delmino Pereira, President of the Portuguese Cycling Federation. “We think the organisation can get the permission of the State.”
In Portugal, the government has decided to relax the measures from tomorrow. The Portuguese football league will resume behind closed doors from May 30.
Volta a Portugal 2019 podium:
Gianni Bugno is in a Rome hospital, where he will undergo a number of tests. The two-time ex-world champion lost consciousness on Thursday morning and, according to Il Messaggero, was then flown to the Italian capital.
“I fell to the ground like a stone,” Bugno told the Italian newspaper. “I think it is due to stress after a difficult period, but in the meantime it is going much better.” The Italian has to stay in the San Camillo hospital in Rome for a few days.
Gianni Bugno is chairman of the cycling union CPA and after his career he became a helicopter pilot. As a rider he was not only two-time World champion, he also has the Tour of Flanders and the Giro d’Italia on his palmarès.
European Championships in Trento Postponed to 2021
The European Cycling Union and the Italian organisers agreed to push the event one year forward. The new date to be set in early September 2021.
The European Cycling Union (UEC) and the organisers of the 2020 UEC Road Cycling European Championships, originally to be held in Trento (Italy) from 9th to 13th September 2020, have reached an agreement to postpone the event by one year. “Having acknowledged the consequences of the pandemic outbreak in the last few weeks,” Trentino Marketing CEO Maurizio Rossini explained. “We are pleased with an outcome that satisfies everybody, and puts us in the position to set up the event at its best, and produce the greatest redemption from both the technical and the promotional sides.”
The Championships will take place in the first half of September as the final decision about the date – according to the options accepted by the organisers, 1-5 September or 8-12 September 2021 – belongs to the International Cycling Union (UCI) once the new season’s international calendar will be completed.
The event shifting to 2021 was the result of lengthy negotiations among the parties involved after the Coronavirus outbreak has frozen every sports activity to date. “We have reached the wisest decision afterward,” Trento’s Tourism board Director Elda Verones argued. “With the full consent by the City of Trento and all the local institutions. Given how the Coronavirus is affecting the economics, we can look forward to the next year’s event as a great opportunity to gather people and share our common thrive for upturn once the emergency will be finally over.”
The UEC, along with the UCI and the National Associations, will now evaluate alternative solutions to hold the 2020 edition in a new location.
Trento’s Piazza Duomo will be the finish line of the road races:
Bretagne Classic Wants to Continue with Changes
The Brittany Classic organisers have announced its intention to host their WorldTour race on August 25. Due to a number of striking adjustments, the event could meet the strict French corona measures.
Earlier this week, the French government extended measures to fight the coronavirus to September 1. Until at least that date, events with more than five thousand visitors are prohibited. The measures also have consequences for cycling races.
But Jean-Yves Tranvaux thinks he can meet all the rules with a number of remarkable adjustments. “If the limit is five thousand people, we want to limit the number of spectators at the finish to a maximum of three thousand,” he said to Ouest-France on behalf of the organisation. “We have the space for it. The finish is one kilometre long and one hundred meters wide, which is one hundred thousand square meters.”
Another possible measure is to ask for entrance fees. Only a €10 entrance ticket can be reserved in advance. “That limits the number of people, making it possible to meet safety requirements,” said Tranvaux. “All visitors will then also receive a numbered face mask.”
The race was initially scheduled to take place on Sunday, August 23, but has already moved two days to Tuesday, August 25. Last year, the victory in the Bretagne Classic went to Sep Vanmarcke.
Sagan: No Goals for the Time Being
Peter Sagan says it is impossible to set goals as long as a final calendar is not set. He does indicate that he is prepared to race well into the winter when the season is restarted.
Sagan cannot escape the lockdown either. After the Vuelta a San Juan, an altitude training camp in Colombia and Paris-Nice, the three-time World champion is locked up in his home in Monaco. “And the days are slowly passing by”, he confesses in an interview with Il Corriere della Sera. “Fortunately, my son lives nearby. I now spend a lot of time with Marlon. And I do groceries, something I never did before.”
The Slovakian trains on the home trainer, although he is not keen. “I hate exercise bikes, but there is no other way during this period.” In a week and a half the measures in France will be relaxed and he will be allowed to train outside again, but Sagan could not say much about his program. “Everything that is told is hypothetical. Nobody knows how that virus will behave in the coming months.” Originally, he was going to ride the Giro d’Italia. Followed by the Tour de France and the road race at the Tokyo Games.
“Once there is certainty about the data of the Grand Tours, I can think about a program and determine my goals. Although I can already say one now: Milan-San Remo, the classic I have never won.” Sagan admitted that he would have no problem to race well into winter if the UCI confirms the extended calendar. “That would be fine for me. I take enough rest.”
Bring on 2020 for Peter Sagan:
Tadej Pogacar: “Riders will have a Similar Condition”
Tadej Pogačar does not expect that there will be many differences in condition between the riders from different countries when the season resumes. In an interview with the Spanish newspaper El Tiempo, the Slovenian said that he expects that the different lockdown rules will not affect the races in the long term.
“In the coming weeks, most boys will train on the road again,” said Pogačar. “I therefore expect that we will have a similar level when the races start again. There is talk of being allowed to train outside again in France and in other countries there are no longer so many restrictions.”
The teams are trying to prepare for the resumption of the season. “Many teams are currently preparing training camps to prepare for the races. That’s the impression I get when I read the messages and talk to my friends.” Although there is currently speculation about the new cycling calendar, he can only wait. “Obviously, as a cyclist, I want to participate in the races as soon as possible, but only when it is safe. Until there is a vaccine, it is difficult to predict what will happen and it is best to remain cautious. Many things can change in the coming months.”
Alejandro Valverde May Postpone Retirement Until the End of 2022
Alejandro Valverde maybe looking for an extension on his career, the 40-year-old Movistar rider announced in a live video on Instagram. Valverde repeated several times in the past that 2021 would be his final year in the pro peloton, but he may postpone that by a year.
“Now that we are not allowed to race this year due to the current situation surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, I’m not sure whether 2021 will be my final year as a pro,” Valverde said. “I had already decided that 2021 would be my last season, but after everything that has happened, I cannot guarantee that it will stay with 2021 and that I will talk to Eusebio Unzué to continue my career, to extend a year.”
In February, Valverde announced that he would like to race for two more seasons at the highest level. That is why he also extended his contract last year until the end of 2021. Because of the corona virus, one of his big goals, the Olympic Games in Tokyo, has been postponed to 2021. “If all goes well, I am still fit and the national team coach calls me, I will do my best at the Games. Although it is clear to me that everything will be more complicated at the age of 41.”
‘Old man’ Valverde – racing for one extra year?
Xandro Meurisse is Not at Ease
Xandro Meurisse wanted to take his career a step higher in 2021, but is that possible, with the current cycling situation? The 28-year-old West Fleming is not completely comfortable with it. “I have a lot of question marks, yes.”
In a short interview on the website of Krant van West-Vlaanderen that Meurisse has a look at his plans. After a great start to the season with a stage and final win in the Tour of Murcia, the Circus-Wanty Gobert rider wanted to show himself in the Ardennes classics.
And like many other riders from ProContinental teams, Meurisse is also looking towards autumn with a scared heart. “What smaller races will remain? Many organisers have since canceled their races, even in August and September. In Belgium there will be no racing before September 1, I suspect. And how are we going to get abroad? I don’t see myself flying to Spain in July to do an internship there. I still want to see it all that there can be raced again this season.”
Meurisse will end his contract with his team in December. He doesn’t have to worry too much, he says. “During Paris-Nice, there were already discussions with my manager and some teams. Staying professional will not be a problem, but I already indicated last year that I want to take it a step higher in 2021.” The question is whether that will still work.
CCC Riders Refuse to Cut Salaries by 80% and Make Counter-Proposals
The riders of the CCC team have not accepted a proposal to reduce wages. Rider Fausto Masnada told Spazio Ciclismo that the riders of the troubled formation have made a counter-proposal.
“We have united as riders and have put together a counter proposal to meet each other halfway,” says Masnada. “The situation is critical, but it is impossible for us to accept this request. We are currently waiting for a response from above,” the Italian said.
The team’s future seems to be hanging on a thread. “To date, the team’s intention is to finish the season and race the events when they resume. We have not been told anything about the future.”
The Polish formation has twenty-eight riders under contract this season, including top man Greg Van Avermaet. Earlier it became clear that the riders were asked to loose 80% of their salary. The shoe company – which has been in financial difficulties for some time – would consider ending all sponsorship activities for 2020 and 2021.
Not good news for the CCC team:
Greg Van Avermaet is Not Thinking About Another Team… Yet
CCC team leader Greg Van Avermaet remains positive and is not thinking of changing team, just yet. The problems with the sponsorship are the subject of discussion within the CCC Team, said Van Avermaet in an interview with VTM Nieuws. Shoe manufacturer CCC saw its turnover and share price plummet and therefore has to cut costs. And so also the sponsorship contract with the cycling team was put at risk. “We talk a lot about the situation. We will be well informed and hopefully there will be a solution. The stores in Poland will open again next week, which may help our sponsor to continue to support our team.”
The riders have been asked to give up 80% of their wages, but the riders want a different plan. “We are working on it,” said Van Avermaet. “But we are not going to give percentages to the press. The goal is to survive this season and then next season. That must be our mindset. We know it is not certain, but we are all fairly positive. Although it is of course not ideal.”
The sponsor issues are no reason for Van Avermaet to start conversations with other teams. “It is currently quiet,” the 34-year-old Olympic champion said. “A lot of teams drop out. So we are certainly not the only team with problems. We will first see what happens to us, then I have time to decide. In any case, my focus is on my team, on survival. That is the most important.”
Greg Van Avermaet – Team Survival:
Lefevere: “No Time for War”
Patrick Lefevere believes that this is not the time to reform cycling. According to the Deceuninck – Quick-Step manager, a war would have to be fought to achieve that, but then only ten teams would remain.
“We don’t have a leg to stand on as teams,” he said in his weekly column in Het Nieuwsblad. “There are many teams that keep up appearances, but the water is everywhere. So I’m not going to fight the ASO now. If they want seven riders per team, it will be seven. If we start playing war now, next year ten teams will remain in the WorldTour.”
In the past, when Lefevere was chairman of the AIGCP he was often on the front line. But now he sees his sometimes powerless position. “I fought politically. Not much remains of my socialist conviction as a former AIGCP chairman. All teams have the same starting money? Little Cofidis as much as we are? That’s the kind of solidarity I really can’t afford in this crisis.”
“I am once again committed to Velon, who tried to take fans into the race by sharing live data and video content from the pack. But what does it all lead to? Opposition by everything and everyone. This is really not the time to wage that war.”
Not the time to fight ASO or UCI:
Jumbo-Visma Prepares for Tour
Jumbo-Visma is trying to prepare for the possible running of the Tour de France. If the most important race of the year can take place in four months, the team will take measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. “We have four months to come up with that,” sports director Merijn Zeeman said in conversation with the AD.
The Jumbo-Visma team want to be ready for the scenario that the Tour will go on. “We must work together to find a way to get back to work,” said Zeeman. “I approach it from a crisis mode, so nothing is sacred. We involve experts to see how we can continue in the current context. Nothing is sacred, not even that we ride with a team of eight riders. Although it does not make sense to have more teams racing, that also means more staff. It is only possible if it is as safe as possible. It is not possible to cycle if there is no support for this in society.”
The team started a zero tolerance policy for shaking hands two years ago. In addition, hotel rooms (with their own mattresses) are disinfected and the air conditioning, remote controls and door handles are also disinfected. The team is also considering allowing riders to sleep in campers or sleep trailers. The meals are prepared in a separate kitchen truck.
At Jumbo-Visma it has been normal for some time that employees with symptoms of illness are kept separate. “Caregivers don’t massage when they have a cold and they don’t prepare water bottles. And they sleep separately until they are free of complaints,” Zeeman explained.
Jumbo-Visma planning for the future:
Gianni Meersman on Corona Crisis
Gianni Meersman, sports director of the Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal cyclocross team, is convinced that the corona crisis should not have a negative impact on the fitness of his riders. “Because of this virus, the rider’s life in this period literally consists of training, eating and resting. There is no room for other things.”
The cyclo-cross riders have not been training for so long. “Normally we would now be working on our first preparation training camp,” said Meersman on the team website. “There was a team camp in Calpe, Spain, but it was of course canceled.” The road program has also almost completely disappeared. “All that remains for the time being is the VOO Tour of Wallonia. And no, there are no alternatives (yet).”
But Meersman remains positive. “Let’s not stand on the wailing wall. For starters, everyone in Belgium and the Netherlands has been able to cycle outside in recent weeks. Our riders have been able to complete their endurance training until today. Nobody is lagging behind in that respect. On the contrary, they should be in better shape: because of the corona virus, the rider’s life in this period literally consists of training, eating and resting. There is no room for other things.”
Meersman also sees no problem for the winter. “Everyone is equal. The other teams will also not compete for the time being. When there really are no more preparation races, it becomes important to work well on intensity in the summer months on training. Actually, you shouldn’t make it more difficult than it is: whoever can do the hardest on training will be there from the beginning of the season.”
Vingegaard Renews Contract with Jumbo-Visma for Two More Years
Team Jumbo-Visma has extended the contract of Jonas Vingegaard. The 23-year-old Danish talent will remain with the team of manager Richard Plugge at least until the end of 2022.
Vingegaard is delighted with his contract extension. “I am happy that I’ve extended my contract with Team Jumbo-Visma. I really like my stay with the team so far. Moreover, I have already been able to develop well and hope to achieve higher goals with the team in the near future. I am proud to be part of this team. At the moment there is no team that suits me better.”
The climber, from the Danish city of Glyngøre, was successful several times in 2019. His greatest success was in the Tour of Poland, where he won the queen stage. It meant his first victory in the WorldTour. In addition, the Dane achieved a second place in the final classification of last year’s Tour of Denmark.
“Especially in these difficult times, we think it’s important to give the signal that we continue to develop our team”, sportive director Merijn Zeeman says. He expects Vingegaard to develop even further in the coming years. “Jonas is a promising talent. We have high hopes for him. We are happy that we have been able to break open his contract and extend it until the end of 2022. In this way, we can continue to build a successful career together.”
Two more years for Vingegaard:
GCN and Eurosport to be Exclusive Broadcast Partners of Zwift ‘Tour For All’ Professional Race Series
5-Stage Virtual Event Offering Unique Viewing Experience for Cycling Fans.
Eurosport and Global Cycling Network (GCN) are proud to be bringing live cycling back to millions of sports fans through the Zwift’s Tour for All exhibition racing series, a professional racing tour to be held on the Zwift virtual platform over five stages raced May 4-8th, 2020.
Featuring teams from both the men’s and women’s World Tours, each stage will be screened live on all Eurosport platforms and streamed globally on the GCN app – with highlights across the GCN show and social media channels, as part of the first collaboration between the two brands that will serve the largest community of cycling fans and provide more ways than ever to watch premium cycling content.
Both men’s and women’s racing will be screened each day between 1400 and 1600 BST (1500 and 1700 CEST) with some of the best cycling teams in the world including Mitchelton-Scott, EF-Education, NTT, Alpecin-Fenix, Bahrain-McLaren, Canyon//SRAM Racing, CCC-Liv and Boels Dolmans competing for race honours. Teams and the top 25 riders will gain points across the week alongside a daily individual race winner. There will also be intermediate points on each stage and double points for the Top 10 on the Queen Stage (Stage 5).
Stages will range in distance from approximately 45km to 75km and approximately 400m and 1700m in elevation with race times estimated to be between 1hr 15min and 2hr, depending on the distance and elevation of each stage. Results will be points based and determined by the team’s performance and results for each stage.
Andrew Georgiou as President, Eurosport and Global Sports Rights & Sports Marketing Solutions, added: “During the current pause in live sport, Discovery is bringing to the fore its creativity and partnership building credentials to bring fans the type of live content they’ve been missing. We are going beyond the archive to offer something completely new that will bring together cycling fans on mass with new stories and unpredictable moments at every turn.”
“Through this series, we aim to leverage Discovery’s unrivalled global scale, brands and channel portfolio as part of a deeper collaboration between Eurosport and GCN to bring new and larger audiences to cycling so they can experience the thrills of the sport first-hand.”
Simon Wear, Founder and CEO of Play Sports Group, said: “In the current climate, cycling fans all over the world are seeking new ways to engage with their passion and keep up to date with the riders they are used to seeing in action through their towns and villages. We feel it’s extremely important to support and celebrate the efforts of these teams and riders and share everything we can with the cycling community.
Tour for All is a great example of riders across continents teaming up to fuel their desire to be the best in the sport. With the interactive features on the new GCN app, it’s a fantastic way to capture the excitement of professional stage racing and share it with cycling fans all over the world across the Eurosport TV network, Eurosport Digital and the GCN App.”
Eric Min, Zwift CEO and Co-Founder said: “I’m thrilled to finally be able to announce this new exhibition series in conjunction with GCN and Eurosport, bringing high level racing and top class entertainment to the world’s cycling fans.
“Over the past few months, we’ve delivered a huge number of unique experiences and opportunities to ride with the stars of the World Tour peloton. I know many have been keen to see when Zwift will bring World Tour teams together to race, and I can’t think of a better way to deliver this series of Men’s and Women’s exhibition racing than to kick off our charity month, ‘Tour for All’ in support of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).”
Tour for All Exhibition Series Diary:
4th May – Stage 1
We kick off the Tour with a flat-ish stage for the sprinters. Both courses feature one short steep hill so expect some action with multiple ascents.
Course: Innsbruckring, Innsbruck. Elevation Gain: 72m (237ft). Total distance: 52.9km (33miles)
5th May – Stage 2
Our first hilly stage.
Course: Cobbled Climbs, Richmond. Elevation Gain: 126m (413ft). Total distance: 46.2km (28.5miles)
6th May – Stage 3
Our first mountain stage. We begin by taking Ocean Boulevard around to the reverse Hilly KOM, which is the first half of the Figure 8 route. Then it’s over to the Volcano and up to the top before descending down and heading to the Italian Villas then the Mayan Jungle for a reverse loop of the circuit. After climbing out of the jungle, we descend back to sea level, hit The Esses and spin a quick around the Volcano Circuit. Then it’s through downtown Watopia and out Ocean Boulevard once more to the forward Epic KOM. Our route finishes at the Epic KOM banner.
Course: Medio Fondo, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 981m (3220ft). Total distance: 72.9km (45.1miles)
7th May – Stage 4
We give everyone’s climbing legs a break with a mostly flat and fast stage.
Enjoy it while it lasts because tomorrow is the Queen Stage!
Course: Sand and Sequoias, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 147m (482ft). Total distance: 42.6km (26.5miles)
8th May – Stage 5
The Queen Stage with a finish up Alpe du Zwift.
Course: Quatch Quest, Watopia. Elevation Gain: 1710m (5610ft). Total distance: 46.5km (28.9miles)
The Tour for All professional racing series will open a month-long charity fundraising initiative that will see Zwift donate a total of $125,000 to Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and its COVID-19 crisis fund. An additional $125,000 can be unlocked once 250,000 people complete a stage of the Tour for All. The professional racing series is designed to showcase the mass-participation stages and encourage Zwifters to take part by riding some of the same courses that the pros have raced.
As such, the main focus for the race series is to deliver fun – both for the teams and riders competing, and for cycling fans at home. Zwift racing is a discipline in its own right and will be a new experience for many of the riders competing. Races will experience the drafting benefits of following other riders, and will feel the same changes in gradient and terrain as they would out on the road. However, Zwift’s gamification, designed to make indoor riding more fun, a new understanding of race tactics thanks to Zwift’s PowerUps. PowerUps deliver a range of small advantages that, when used at the right time, can help shape the race.
Teams and riders competing:
Israel Start-Up Nation
NTT Pro Cycling Team
EF Education First Pro Cycling
FDJ Nouvelle – Aquitaine Futuroscope
● Feather Lightweight (feather): reduces rider weight by 9.5kg / 21lb for 15 seconds
● Truck Draft Boost (van): increases the draft effect riders experience by 50% for 30 seconds
● Helmet Aero Boost (helmet): makes riders more aerodynamic for 15 seconds
● Breakaway Burrito: makes riders undraftable for 10 seconds
● Invisibility (ghost): makes riders invisible to other riders for 10 seconds
Team Bahrain McLaren to Race Zwift’s Tour For All on Live TV
Team Bahrain McLaren is proud to announce it will participate in the Tour for All on Zwift alongside other men and women’s WorldTour teams.
The five-stages of virtual racing will run from May 4 to May 8 between 15:00 and 17:00 CEST and will be broadcast live on Eurosport and Global Cycling Network (GCN).
Stages will range in distance from 45km to 75km and between 400m and 1700m in elevation. The overall winning team will be decided on points for placing in each race and points awarded on intermediate sprints. The ‘queen stage’ finishes atop the Alpe du Zwift and is worth double points.
“The Tour for All brings together several critical elements for our team during this unprecedented time. It keeps us in a racing mindset, drives exposure for our partners and gives our fans a unique opportunity to watch and ride with us. What’s more, it’s all for a great cause.” says Rod Ellingworth, Team Principal.
Beyond watching the race series, Zwifters can ride all five-stages of the Tour for All which showcases some of the best riding Zwift has to offer.
The race and riding aspects of the Tour for All are a month-long drive to raise funds for the Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) COVID-19 crisis fund. Zwift will start the Tour with a $125,000 donation to the MSF to support COVID-19 relief efforts. They will then match that donation at the end of the Tour if 250,000 Zwifters finish at least one stage.
The Team Bahrain McLaren line-up will be announced in the coming days.
France to Pay €50 Per Person for Bike Repairs after Lockdown
France is to contribute €50 per person towards bicycle repairs after its nationwide COVID-19 lockdown ends on 11th May. Environment minister Elisabeth Borne announced on a €20 million euro plan for repairing bicycles, installing temporary bike parking spaces and financing cycling coaching sessions.
Borne said the government will also accelerate a programme allowing employers to cover up to €400 of travel costs of staff who cycle to work. “We want this period to be a new stage towards a cycling culture and we want the bicycle to be the queen of deconfinement,” Borne said on Twitter.
The minister said the move was aimed at reducing driving when commuting or for short journeys to keep air pollution levels down once restrictions are lifted. In normal times, 60% of journeys made in France are less than five kilometres.
Barguil can get out soon:
UAE Team Emirates sign Juan Ayuso – Young Spaniard joins on a long-term contract
UAE Team Emirates will continue their commitment to developing young talent by signing 17-year old Spanish rider Juan Ayuso on a five year deal with the team.
The promising youngster is the current Spanish Junior National Champion and holds 6 victories to his name so far in 2020. As part of his development, Ayuso will spend his first contract year with a development team with the objective of gaining experience and making a gradual transition to the professional ranks. Ayuso, who hails from the Spanish province of Alicante, has taken the domestic junior ranks by storm and was quickly picked up on the radar of UAE Team manager Matxin Fernandez.
Joxean Matxin Fernandez (Manager): “Juan is a rider we have been following for a long time. It’s no secret that we like to work with young talented riders and Juan is the definition of this. He has the right balance between physical talent and having a very good head on his shoulders. Along with Juan and his parents we are thinking more medium to long term.
The idea is for him to make a gradual transition into the World Tour team. We are deciding along with Juan and his family where is best for him to spend his first year – whether it be at a Continental or professional level is still to be defined.”
“He came to our team training camp last winter and he has raced on a bike given by the team this year so we have been giving him a hand alone the way. Last year he had an exceptionally strong season as a junior and he showed that again at the start of this year. The idea is to give him time and space to develop as a rider and as a person. The priority at the moment is that he enjoys the bike. It’s a five year outlook with Juan and he is part of the long-term project we are building at UAE Team Emirates.”
Juan Ayuso: “At the moment I’m an all-rounder but I think in the future I will head towards being more a climber. My first contact with the team was through Matxin mid-way through last season, then I got to know the team a bit better at their training camp last winter.”
“At the training camp I had the opportunity to see how the team actually worked. I was really impressed on how well the team was structured and the great atmosphere between the riders. The decision of choosing UAE ahead of any other team is because the teams mentality is very similar to mine; a very ambitious mentality with a very hard work ethic behind it. The team is relatively new, and it is taking huge steps to improve each year. I have no doubts that the team will become the best team in the World Tour in the near future.”
Spice up your day with the Wolfpack Playlists!
Three different music sets chosen by our riders for an unforgettable experience and a sneak peak of our Wolfpack Anthem.
Music plays an important part in the life of a rider. Just think about it: all those long hours spent in the bus travelling to and from a competition, on the massage table after a hard race, or in the evening, when all they want is to relax and detach themselves from all that happened during the day. Not to mention the boost music gives while warming up outside the bus ahead of a big race.
Now, with large parts of the world in lockdown and road cycling and training outside banned in some places, music is of even bigger importance for cycling lovers, as they train inside on their rollers several hours per day. That’s how we came up with the idea of creating, together with the Deceuninck – Quick-Step riders, three Wolfpack Playlists, which we now want to share with you, our amazing fans!
What’s the catch? There is none! You can find these music sets – to the making of which all our riders contributed – on Spotify. Get In The Zone is perfect to start your day after savouring a nice Wolfpack Espresso, Full Gas is just what you need for a session of intense training which will make you feel like taking on some of the hardest climbs in the world, while Cooling Down is perfect for a quiet afternoon or a lazy Sunday. On top of that, you’ll get a teaser of The Wolfpack Anthem, which is to be launched later this year, in collaboration with CNR Records, which have put their entire experience behind the team, helping us bring to life this innovative music project for the world of cycling.
“As a passionate fan and amateur cyclist of this great sport I am honoured to be the music partner of this great project. The entire team at CNR Records is very keen to be a part of this amazing blend of cycling and music. We wish The Wolfpack all the success and hope to provide all cycling fans some extra support through these playlists”, said Tom De Meijer (MD CNR Records).
“Electronic music or hip-hop is what I like to listen to during warm-up, to get the motivation and that much-needed adrenaline before a race. I’m sure you all know it, that feeling you get when you listen to a great song that pumps you up before a race and helps you find the focus for the day ahead. I have many favourite songs and I’m glad that through the Wolfpack playlists I get to share some of them with our fans”, said Luxembourg Champion Bob Jungels.
Julian Alaphilippe is another rider who was excited about this project: “For me, music is a quintessential part of my everyday life. I listen to music almost all the time. In the team bus, before a race, to remain focused and to get out of my head everything that’s not relevant for that day. The tunes are always different, it depends on how I feel, where I am, what I do, what’s my mood. Music has something special, something mesmerising that takes me to a unique place every time.”
“When the team told me about this, I was immediately hooked. The hardest part was picking just three songs, as there are so many that I like, but in the end, I made a selection and I hope it will give our fans a taste of how things are inside the team, and they will enjoy them”, added Remco Evenepoel.
Scicon Sports Launches its Ergonomic, Washable, Sustainable Community Mask
SCICON Sports, global leader in the production of cycling bags, has pivoted its production of bags and protective eyewear in light of the current pandemic to manufacture a selection of personal protection items that aim to support the improvement of public health.
Following the example of many other companies in the textile sector, SCICON Sports is joining the effort and has converted its entire production line to create face masks and protective eyewear in response to the increasingly pressing request of companies, private entities and law enforcement agencies for protective equipment.
In addition to offering sports bags and protective eyewear, SCICON Sports also manufactures custom cycling clothing in-house under the Ftech brand (www.ftech.it) which has led to a wealth of experience and know-how in the field of apparel manufacture for over 10 years.
Located in Veneto, one of both Italy and the world’s most affected areas by the pandemic, SCICON Sports presents the first model of a sustainable and reusable face mask following extensive prototype testing and the selection of various fabrics in collaboration with leading Italian fabric suppliers.
In addition to the newly developed protective respirator face masks, SCICON Sports also offers highly protective AeroTech eyewear equipped with clear lenses, the same model that is sported by 3 World Tour cycling teams.
To find out more about SCICON Sports, visit http://shop.sciconsports.com.
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