Another big EUROTRASH Monday. Alex Dowsett failed to break the World hour record – TOP STORY. European cyclo-cross championships, results and video, plus Giro d’Italia Criterium and the UCI Track Champion League. Rider news from Oscar Sevilla, Louis Vervaeke, Davide Villella, Max Walscheid, Fausto Masnada and Fumiyuki Beppu. Team news: Movistar men’s and Lotto Soudal Ladies and U23 roster for 2022, Chad Haga joins Rally Cycling, BikeExchange sign Chelsie Tan Wei Shi, Michal Golas Bahrain Victorious DS, Manuela Fundación Conti team, EF Education First joins TIBCO, Aevolo roster and becomes amateur and Team Novo Nordisk extends with GSG. Race news: Alternative Tour Down Under and Maryland Cycling Classic. Plus Filippo Pozzato hospitalised, Arturo Grávalos successful operation and Pete Kennaugh video. Big coffee time.
TOP STORY: Dowsett Falls Short of Campenaerts Hour Record
Alex Dowsett failed to break the World hour record last Wednesday. The 33-year-old Briton covered a distance of 54 kilometres and 555 metres in Aguascalientes, Mexico, not enough to beat Victor Campenaerts’ record. The Belgian rode a distance of 55.089 kilometres on April 16, 2019 on the same track.
Dowsett started well and was a second behind Campenaerts in the opening section, but gradually he fell further and further behind the record pace. After 20 kilometres he was 3 seconds behind the time of Campenaerts. At 30 kilometres he was 6 seconds behind. Campenaerts’ record remained out of reach.
Dowsett managed to improve his distance from six years ago, as he held the World hour record for a short time in 2015. He set a distance of 52.937 kilometres in Manchester on 2 May 2015, but saw his record broken a month later by Bradley Wiggins.
Alex Dowsett (Israel Start-Up): “I’m proud of myself and the distance I’ve covered. I feel good. I had three goals when I started this. The first goal was to break the World hour record. I fell short for that. I would therefore like to once again congratulate Victor and Dan Bigham (holder of the British hour record), because I rode for a world record and a British record today. They are great cyclists, but today was a great success because my other goal was to see how far I could go on my own. And 54,555 kilometres is apparently how far I can go. We gave it our all, with the small team around me. It was a lot of work to get here. But everyone believed in me and I believed in myself. That is the greatest success. I’m proud of that. Proud of myself and the distance I have ridden. To young people with haemophilia, I want to say: give it a chance, because the biggest mistake for me would have been not to have tried it. All my childhood I had to hear what I couldn’t do: Football, rugby, boxing… But together with my parents we went looking for things I could do. We turned something negative into something positive. I’ve been able to build a great career. Life can sometimes be hard on you, but what matters is what you make of it and how you deal with it.”
World hour record holder, Victor Campenaerts: “Glad that it is still in my possession. In retrospect you can say: it could have been a bit more exciting. He feels the pain of the effort and the pain of disappointment, although I think he should be proud of his achievement. I’m going to send him later: Respect that you fought to the end. Respect for riding on trying to break my record and not playing it safe. Because I know he can go faster than 54,555 kilometres. Had he played it safe, he would have been somewhere around 54.8 kilometres. I’m glad the record is still in my possession, but records are there to be broken. It’s not that I get a bonus from the UCI for every day the record is in my possession. The only thing I got from them in those two and a half years was the opportunity to fly in business class to China for the closing gala of the UCI. But the more riders in the meantime who go for my hour record, the more prestige it gets. This is proof that I am a good rider, isn’t it?”
European Cyclo-Cross Men’s Championships 2021
Lars van der Haar is the new European cyclocross champion, winning on the VAM mountain in Drenthe. The 30-year-old Dutchman rode his race well, he defeated the entire Belgian block and captured the gold medal after an exciting battle with Quinten Hermans in the final laps. It is his second European Championship title, he won gold in Huijbergen in 2015.
A crash on the first lap caused a split in the bunch, but the big favourites were ahead of the carnage. Toon Aerts, Michael Vanthourenhout, Quinten Hermans, Eli Iserbyt, Jens Adams, Daan Soete and Laurens Sweeck led the way with two non-Belgians: Dutchman Lars van der Haar and Frenchman Joshua Dubau. on the third lap there were some breaks in the leading group. Aerts, Iserbyt, Hermans and Vanthourenhout made a gap and the only person who could make the crossing was Van der Haar. A bike change caused Van der Haar and Iserbyt to fall behind. Going into the fifth lap, the Dutchman put in a counterattack that Iserbyt was unable to follow and the Belgian top favourite was finished. At the front Hermans, Aerts and Vanthourenhout gave each other little space, but on the steep climb of the VAM mountain it was Hermans who made a big gap. He started the sixth lap of ten with a 14 seconds lead. A strong Van der Haar had returned in the meantime, which meant that he was once again involved in the battle for the medals. Toon Aerts had to change bikes twice that lap and as a result he lost contact.
At the start of the seventh lap, Van der Haar left Vanthourenhout and started the hunt for Hermans in the lead. He narrowed the gap to 5 seconds and had the Belgian leader in sight. With three laps to go, the rain started to play a role in Drenthe, but that didn’t bother Hermans and Van der Haar. Due to a strong sprint on the cobbled climb on the VAM mountain, the Dutchman joined Hermans at the start of the penultimate lap. Van der Haar actually caught and passed Hermans and took a lead of 2 seconds. The Dutchman, a Sven Nys rider with Baloise Trek Lions, soon had 6 seconds and when entering the final lap his lead was up to 13 seconds. In the last lap, Van der Haar extended his lead further and further. With emotion and disbelief, Van der Haar crossed the finish line after more than an hour; six years after his first European title in 2015. Quinten Hermans was at 25 seconds and took the silver medal, Michael Vanthourenhout was at 54 seconds for the bronze. Aerts was fourth, Sweeck fifth and Adams sixth. Iserbyt had an off day and finished twelfth.
European champion, Lars van der Haar(Netherlands): “I still can’t believe it. It’s really bizarre. I gave everything and I had to try not to lead the way in the beginning, but I still had to close some gaps. It was a tough course and I got exactly what I wanted. I’ve been thinking about what they always said: ‘don’t think, just ride’. I felt really good, but this course is so atypical and so tough. That played into my hands. This one (Euro champs) is nicer, much nicer. I haven’t been able to win much for a number of years, so to take a title like that is really nice. Though I have no idea why it works now. Is this the best Van der Haar ever? That’s how I feel.”
2nd, Quinten Hermans (Belgium): “I knew Lars was doing well, but at the end he lashed out very hard. We hadn’t taken Lars into account, and I didn’t see it coming either. I don’t think I stopped much. I had to do a quick lap to close the gap, but after that I didn’t go much slower. But Lars started to accelerate and when he got there I knew it was going to be difficult. Someone who comes back is always stronger. I tried my hardest, but he got a good line and then I couldn’t close the gap. I know I was in good shape today, and I worked hard here. I can hardly blame myself. I made few mistakes and bumped into a stronger man here. It’s a shame when everything goes perfectly.”
3rd, Michael Vanthourenhout (Belgium): “The up-and-coming man is usually the strongest in the race, and he has shown that. Lars is someone who can really rise above himself on his courses. We knew that. If the course suits him, he can do a little more. The people were also a bit more for Lars, but he was also just the strongest. I came for more, but I think this was the highest possible. The start was good, but I felt a bit less uphill. That was actually a decisive part of the course. I knew it was going to be very difficult to win. I was happy to be able to fight for the podium.”
Pre-race favourite, Eli Iserbyt (Belgium): “I’m happy for Lars that he was able to win that title. I had a bad day, I think. I was already at my limit after three or four laps and it didn’t really go uphill. I have to make peace with it now and look ahead. I don’t really have an explanation for it. Today I didn’t feel sick either. But as soon as the race started, I noticed that I didn’t have super legs. And in the fourth lap my legs were suddenly completely ‘cut off’. It went from bad to worse, but I didn’t want to give up just like that at a European Championship. The first lap is always very telling and it wasn’t great for me. I was also briefly held up by a fall. Just a little loss of concentration. But I say it, that’s part of a bad day. I’m happy for Lars that he was able to win that title. If you finish in three minutes, you shouldn’t be disappointed. It’s harder for second if you don’t win.”
European Cyclo-Cross Men’s Championships Result:
1. Lars van der Haar (Netherlands) in 1:01:44
2. Quinten Hermans (Belgium) at 0:25
3. Michael Vanthourenhout (Belgium) at 0:54
4. Toon Aerts (Belgium) at 1:34
5. Laurens Sweeck (Belgium) at 1:52
6. Jens Adams (Belgium) at 2:07
7. Joshua Dubau (France) at 2:50
8. Joris Nieuwenhuis (Netherlands) at 2:58
9. Jakob Dorigoni (Italy) at 3:00
10. Daan Soete (Belgium) at 3:05.
European Cyclo-Cross Women’s Championships 2021
Lucinda Brand took a solo win at the European cyclo-cross championship for women. The Dutch World champion took off on the opening lap and rode solo for the entire race. The Hungarian Kata Blanka Vas took the silver, ahead of the Dutch rider Yara Kastelijn.
In the chaos of the start, the Manon Bakker was the biggest victim. At the first muddy stretches, Bakker chose the wrong track, causing her to crash. The Belgian Marthe Truyen was also one of the unlucky ones. In addition, Bakker’s gears were also not working and she had to wait a while for a new bike. Up front, the Hungarian Kata Blanka Vas was not in the mood to wait. Vas had gained confidence after her World Cup victory in Overijse and a third place on the Koppenberg, but went a little too fast in the first lap. The Hungarian put the pressure on and didn’t relinquish the lead until they passed through the pits. There, Vas, like almost all riders in her track, opted for the bike change, while Lucinda Brand continued. In the following run, the World champion had about 5 seconds. A tired Vas didn’t have an answer, and the four Dutch riders on her wheel (Yara Kastelijn, Denise Betsema, Ceylin Alvarado and Annemarie Worst) didn’t come forward.
Brand was able to quickly increase her lead: after one lap the difference was already 14 seconds and this was how the race proceeded for the entire 48 minutes: Brand would only get further away, alone in the lead. Blanka Vas was at safe distance, with the other Dutch riders on her wheel. Vas continued to put the Dutch under pressure. One by one, Worst, Alvarado and top favourite Denise Betsema were dropped. Only a strong Kastelijn continued to compete for the silver medal until the final lap. She could always put pressure on Vas in the running section, but the Hungarian turned out to be too strong, although at a good distance from winner Brand, this is her first European title.
European champion, Lucinda Brand (Netherlands): “The goal was to one day have the Dutch, European and world championships on my record. Now I finally have all three. Of course my palmarès is not complete yet, this is not the end. But I’m very happy with it. Certainly in my own country, it’s always extra fun to win. It was also the first championship where we could ride with an audience again. Today I had a great day. I didn’t expect that in advance. The others apparently had trouble with the course, but today it went perfectly for me. I immediately had a gap after the pits area, and I thought: I shouldn’t pass that up. It was just being careful not to lose concentration.”
2nd, Kata Blanka Vas (Hungary): “It was a mistake to switch bikes. Lucinda was on a different level, but I did make a mistake in pitting for a new bike. Why did I do that? No idea. I thought it would go faster in the pits, but it wasn’t. I think it was a mistake to switch. It wasn’t necessary. There are always mixed feelings after a second place, but I think I can be satisfied.”
European Cyclo-Cross Women’s Championships Result:
1. Lucinda Brand (Netherlands) in 48:22
2. Kata Blanka Vas (Hungary) at 0:56
3. Yara Kastelijn (Netherlands) at 1:02
4. Ceylin del Carmen Alvarado (Netherlands) at 1:29
5. Denise Betsema (Netherlands) at 2:01
6. Hélène Clauzel (France) at 2:21
7. Annemarie Worst (Netherlands) at 2:34
8. Alice Maria Arzuffi (Italy) at 2:50
9. Silvia Persico (Italy) at 2:58
10. Sanne Cant (Belgium) at 3:04
Giro d’Italia Criterium at Expo 2020 Dubai 2021
Peter Sagan conquered the inaugural 1-day event at Expo 2020 Dubai beating Bernal and Hirschi. Elia Viviani won the Points Classification, Attila Valter was awarded Most Combative rider while Filippo Ganna recorded the fastest lap of the race. H.H. Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Sports Council, met with the riders before the start of the race.
Peter Sagan won the first-ever Giro d’Italia Criterium, organised by RCS Sport with the support of MadeinItaly.gov.it, Dubai Sports Council and Expo 2020 Dubai.
Peter Sagan crossed the finish line of the Giro d’Italia Criterium in first place, after completing 30 laps of a 2.1km circuit, within the Expo 2020 Dubai – the first World Expo ever hosted in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, where the ‘Made in Italy’ campaign is showcasing Italian excellence. Egan Bernal and Marc Hirschi were second and third, respectively.
The winner of the first-ever Giro d’Italia Criterium, Peter Sagan (BORA-hansgrohe): “This was a very special race, it is incredible to be here and have the opportunity to ride the Giro d’Italia Criterium at Expo 2020 Dubai. I am very happy I could take the win in this unique place. I want to thank my teammates that kept the race under control. In the first part of the Criterium, I tried to be in the front and contest the sprints to win the Points Classification but I soon realised Elia Viviani was faster than me today. I decided to change my tactic. I tried to recover for 10-15 laps, it was a very fast race. Then in the last few laps Bernal, Hirschi and Bouchard attacked and I decided to follow them – it was the right move. After Bernal attacked again, I managed to stay with him and beat him on the line. I am very happy with this success!”
Elia Viviani (Cofidis): “I have great memories of Dubai – having won the Dubai Tour in 2018 – and of the Giro d’Italia, especially from 2018 when I won the Maglia Ciclamino in the Points Classification. Being an Italian rider I am proud of having taken part in the first Giro d’Italia Criterium at Expo 2020 Dubai and of having been awarded the Points Classification on the stage in front of Italy Pavilion”.
Filippo Ganna (INEOS Grenadiers): “I knew I could not win in a bunch sprint against Sagan and Viviani, so I tried to go on the attack and anticipate the sprint. The peloton behind did a great job and closed the gap, but at least I manage to record the fastest lap of the race”.
Attila Valter (Groupama-FDJ): “As the race started I decided I wanted to race aggressively and I went on the attack with the other two riders. At some point, I thought we could have made it to the finish, but the peloton bridged the gap, and caught us. I am very happy to receive the award as ‘Most Aggressive Rider’ because it reflects the style of riding I like. Now I hope I can spend some time in Dubai to visit the Expo 2020 Dubai and the city”.
Giro d’Italia Criterium at Expo 2020 Dubai Result:
1. Peter Sagan (BORA-hansgrohe)
2. Egan Bernal (INEOS Grenadiers)
3. Marc Hirschi (UAE Team Emirates).
Historic Moment in Sport as UCI Track Champion League Debuts with Electrifying First Round
A packed velodrome and a worldwide TV audience watched the world’s best riders deliver spectacular racing in track cycling’s breakthrough new series.
The world of sport witnessed a historic moment tonight as the UCI Track Champions League made a stunning international debut. The biggest development in track cycling for generations, 72 of the world’s best riders delivered an enthralling first round of wheel-to-wheel racing at the Velòdrom Illes Balears in Mallorca, Spain.
After round one, multiple Olympic medalists and UCI Track Cycling World Champions Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands) and Emma Hinze (Germany) lead the men’s and women’s Sprint League respectively. Alongside them, fellow decorated superstars Corbin Strong (New Zealand) and Katie Archibald (Great Britain), hold first place in the men’s and women’s Endurance League. The four leaders took to the podium to receive the coveted UCI Track Champions League Leader’s Jersey, to wear at round two in Panevėžys Lithuania on November 27.
The Velòdrom Illes Balears welcomed a packed crowd, half of whom were witnessing track cycling for the first time. The experience treated them to a technology-driven spectacle not seen before in cycling. TV viewers around the world tuned in via discovery+, Eurosport, GCN+ and a wealth of international broadcast partners for the action-packed first round.
THE STORY OF ROUND 1
Women’s Sprint League – Keirin
Three fast-paced heats delivered a Keirin final comprising Olympic stars Kelsey Mitchell (Canada), Emma Hinze (Germany) and Lea Friedrich (Germany) alongside Martha Bayona Pineda (Colombia), Miriam Vece (Italy), and Mathilde Gros (France). With one lap to go, lead rider from the derny Lea Friedrich powered ahead from the front. She was soon caught however, and overtaken by Mitchell and Hinze in a two-way battle for victory. Crossing the line first, Mitchell threw her bike forward, hitting a max heart rate of 182bpm.
Kelsey Mitchell (Canada): “I pulled fourth place so I was in the middle of the pack. I normally prefer to take the front early but this time I decided to hang back and save energy before hitting it hard on the last lap, so I was happy to get round everyone. It feels incredible to win and I just want to keep this momentum going.”
Women’s Sprint League – Sprint
Six dynamic heats of three riders each, followed by two semi-finals generated a tactical, all-German, one-on-one women’s sprint final. After a cagey start, Emma Hinze took the win around the outside of Lea Friedrich, and crossed the line at 73kph.
Emma Hinze (Germany): “The race was really intense, really fast – and the atmosphere was amazing. I feel really proud to be the one to be wearing the leaders’ jersey. The competition here is very tough, but I’m looking forward to the next events.”
Men’s Sprint League – Sprint
After six heats, and a pair of semi-finals, the men’s Sprint final saw Netherlands’ Harrie Lavreysen go head to head with Mikhail Iakovlev of Russia. The race began as a game of cat and mouse, before the riders accelerated with one lap to go. Lavreysen forced Iakovlev to pass him from above, only to launch a surprise attack the Russian could not match. Lavreysen crossed the line in celebration to a cheering crowd.
Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands): “It was good – I like racing with just three riders in the heats. I was nervous because this is new for me – it’s different to riding one-vs-one and very technical. It was great to go into the final against Iakovlev. I held a lot of speed from the top and he didn’t see me, so when I rode past him he didn’t expect it. I hope to win some more – it’s great racing here.”
Men’s Sprint League – Keirin
Jeffrey Hoogland (Netherlands), Stefan Botticher (Germany), Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands), Kazuto Yamasaki (Japan), Nicholas Paul (Trinidad & Tobago) and Barrette (Canada) lined up for the hotly anticipated men’s Keirin final – each the winner of six frenetic heats. Barrette lead from the derny and was quickly passed in the closing sprint. Hoogland then took to the front with a lap to go, only to be reeled in by Botticher and Lavreysen who took a close first and second place respectively.
Women’s Endurance League – Scratch
The race began with an early breakaway from three riders. Maggie Coles Lyster (Canada), Olivija Baleisyte (Lithuania) and Hanna Tserakh (Belarus) quickly created a half lap lead from the main bunch. With two laps to go, this lead reduced, leading to a nail-bitingly close finish. Fending off the chasing group, Maggie Coles Lyster led the breakaway trio and was first over the line.
Maggie Coles Lyster (Canada): “The first four laps went steady and I thought of attacking as there were lots of gaps, but then I found myself in front when Kirsten pulled off. With three laps to go I saw them charging from behind and wasn’t sure I could hold it as my gear already felt big, suddenly it was 50 metres to go and I knew I had it. It feels incredible to be one of the first race winners of the UCI Track Champions League – I believed in myself and knew I had it in me, but to actually do it is a whole other thing.”
Women’s Endurance League – Elimination
The women’s Elimination began very fast. Heart rates sat above 180bpm as one by one riders were eliminated every two laps. Katie Archibald maintained a strong pace at the front throughout as Spanish riders Eukene Larrarte and Tania Calvo were eliminated to the applause of the local crowd. Race rival Maggie Coles Lyster faced elimination with fewer than five riders remaining. With two laps to go, Archibald continued to drive at the front, now with just Kirsten Wild sat behind her. The final lap saw Archibald accelerate, leaving Wild behind, allowing Archibald a ‘victory lap’ before she crossed the line.
Katie Archibald (Great Britain): “There were some parts of the race that caught me out. I’m happier going hard, which we did at the start, but it eased up halfway and I was worried the riders behind would come round me. Towards the end I tried to burn people off the back so I didn’t get boxed in or out of position, and really wanted it to come down to legs more than anything. The level of competition is tough, but I’ve got one of the fastest bikes here and I came ready for this. It feels great to lead. There’s a tiny part that feels daunting, but it feels really good.”
Men’s Endurance League – Scratch
The men’s Scratch witnessed a breakaway from lap 12, led by Spanish Olympian Sebastian Mora to the delight of the local crowd. He was quickly joined by other riders before the chasing group caught the break with just a handful of laps to go. Corbin Strong (New Zealand) then attacked from the bunch 500m from the finish. Although he was reeled in with half a lap to go, he found a second wind to take the race win in a bunch sprint.
Corbin Strong (New Zealand): “It was hot from the start, really not slow at all and if you weren’t warmed up properly it would have really cost you. With it only being 20 laps it was extremely intense out there. It’s a pretty cool feeling to win. This event is a massive for track cycling and I’m just so excited to be a part of it.”
Men’s Endurance League – Elimination
Just like the women’s race, the men’s Elimination was fast from the gun. Spanish riders Sebastian Mora and Erik Martorell Haga took to the front as a pair to maintain a high speed throughout, to great success. Scartezzini and Eefting were among the riders to exit the race as the bunch thinned down until three riders remained – winner of the Scratch Corbin Strong, alongside both Mora and Martorell Haga. Strong proved too fast for both, and took the win with an impressive ride.
Corbin Strong (New Zealand): “It was hot from the start as eliminations always are, and I started at the back so I had a lot of work to do. I got myself into a good position and got lucky a couple of times, but when it came down to the final five, tactically I felt comfortable. I think my fitness has gone down the last couple of weeks but obviously the power is still there. I’m well suited to the shorter format racing and it’s worked out well today. It feels pretty cool to be leading overall – not something I was expecting coming into this week. I’ve got a target on my back for the next race, but I’m looking forward to the challenge.”
Oscar Sevilla to Race for Team Medellín in 2022
Oscar Sevilla has confirmed that he will continue with Team Medellín for another season. For the 45-year-old Spanish climber, recently second in the Clásico RCN stage race behind his teammate Fabio Duarte, it will be his sixth year with the Colombian Continental team.
Sevilla’s long career dates back to 1998. As an U23, the Spanish climber made his debut at Kelme-Costa Blanca, for which he would race for six seasons. In 1999 he recorded his first professional victory in the Tour de Romandie, two years later he was seventh and the best young rider in the Tour de France. That same year he finished second in the Vuelta a España. A year later he was fourth.
In 2004 Sevilla moved to Phonak and in 2005 to T-Mobile. He was fired from that team in 2016, due to alleged involvement in the Spanish doping scandal with doctor Fuentes. In 2007 he was signed by Relax-GAM and for that team he won a stage in the Tour of Catalonia and a stage and the final classification in the Route d’Occitanie. Afterwards, the Spanish climber competed for several teams at Continental level.
Since 2017, Sevilla has been racing for its current team, the Colombian Continental Team Medellín. With that team he won the Tour of Madrid in 2017, the Vuelta a San Juan in 2018 and the Vuelta a Chiloe in 2019. He also took victories last season, the Vuelta al Táchira, the Vuelta a Colombia, the Vuelta a Antioquia and the Clásica de Guayaquil. At the end of last month he finished second in the Clásico RCN.
Another year for Sevilla:
Louis Vervaeke Joins the Wolfpack
Deceuninck – Quick-Step has signed the 28-year-old Belgian on a contract through 2023.
Louis Vervaeke has been a pro since 2014, racking up several strong results in the past years. At the most recent Giro d’Italia he came close to a podium on the Sestola stage before finishing in the top 20 overall. Vervaeke has shown his climbing skills on multiple occasions in the past seasons, the Deutschland Tour KOM jersey, as well as top 20 finishes at the Tirreno-Adriatico, Volta a Catalunya and Giro dell’Emilia serving as testimony of what he’s capable of.
Patrick Lefevere, CEO of Deceuninck – Quick-Step, sees Louis as a great asset of the team for the next two years: “Louis is a really friendly guy, always with a big smile. We have a long-term vision to fight for a Grand Tour overall victory, and for that we also need strong helpers for the mountains. Louis possesses a lot of qualities, can support our leaders on the climbs and can maybe go for his own chance whenever an opportunity arises. We hope to give Louis a nice environment in which he feels well and where he can further develop.”
Louis Vervaeke is extremely proud to see his childhood dream come true: “Every rider looks up to Deceuninck – Quick-Step. When I was little, I bought myself a blue jersey and raced while wearing it with my brother and friends in the street, and now getting to wear this jersey in the pro peloton is incredible. As a child I liked sports a lot. At first, I rode horses. Then I made the step to tennis. Mentally I thought it was a hard sport, also my brother was maybe better than me and I didn’t really like that. To keep our condition, we went mountain biking during our tennis camp, so I just rolled into cycling like that. In the beginning I started participating at races where I couldn’t follow the others, but for me it was just such a nice feeling to go out training on my own or with friends and to rack up kilometres on the bike. I really liked the sport.”
“Now I have some experience already, having ridden for different teams until now. Every squad has a different story, a different way of working and every time you learn something. I’m really looking forward to learning new things in the Wolfpack, racing with these riders and getting to know the staff.”
“I hope to make a step forward in my climbing skills during the next few years. I will mostly help and work for the leaders in the team wherever and whenever possible. When I became a professional cyclist in July 2014, I just missed out on breaking through as a top rider in the mountains. So I’m happy to keep on improving and helping the other guys, and then we will see how it goes.”
Vervaeke is extremely grateful for the trust put in him: “I’ve always regarded Patrick as an inspiring person. He’s really known in Belgium and I’ve always been a silent admirer of how he leads the team and how he protects his riders. He’s a bit of a father to his riders, and that has also been one of my motivations to come to the team. The first time I had a long conversation with Patrick was really pleasant, I immediately felt at home and welcome. The time during our conversation went by so fast, it all went smoothly.”
“Seeing how many times this team wins and how united everyone is here, is just incredible. When I came to the service course I saw how the mechanics and soigneurs have this bond, they’re enjoying the time together and there’s time for a laugh in between working. You feel that it’s something special, it’s a family and that really attracts me and makes me confident for next season”, Louis concluded.
Villella and Walscheid to Cofidis
Cofidis has attracted two new riders for 2022; Davide Villella and Max Walscheid. The Italian comes from Movistar, the German from Qhubeka NetHash.
For the 30-year-old Villella, it will be his fourth team in the WorldTour, having previously ridden for Cannondale, Astana and Movistar. He raced for the Spanish team for the past two years. He didn’t take any victories during that period, although Villella finished this season strongly with a fourth place in the Trofeo Matteotti, a fifth place in the Giro della Toscana and a 22nd place in Il Lombardia. At Cofidis, he will support leader Guillaume Martin, the team said in a press release.
Walscheid will be able to go for his own chances a little more often. The 28-year-old German is fast and can ride the classics, as he proved with a 12th place in Paris-Roubaix last month. At Cofidis, Roubaix will again be his main goal. He will also start in a Grand Tour.
The French WorldTour team has already been strengthened with Wesley Kreder, Hugo Toumire and Francois Bidard.
Davide Villella – KOM in the 2017 Vuelta:
Fausto Masnada Extends with The Wolfpack
This year’s Il Lombardia runner-up has signed a new contract, through 2024.
Fausto Masnada’s 2021 season was one filled with both ups and downs. The 27-year-old Italian took a strong third spot overall at the Tour de Romandie, unfortunately bad luck was around the corner as knee tendinitis made him step out of the Giro d’Italia. Fausto came back at the nationals with a second place, but a crash at the Settimana Ciclistica Italiana again put him off the bike for a long recovery period. Despite all these setbacks, he switched goals, kept working hard and ended his season in a fantastic way at Il Lombardia as runner-up.
The hard work paid off. Patrick Lefevere, CEO of Deceuninck – Quick-Step, agreed on a three-year deal being convinced about Fausto’s capacities: “Fausto had a hard year, having several setbacks. But he kept working hard, his positive mindset and attitude is what you need to take the most out of it. Every time Fausto raced, he showed what a great asset he is, how he can go full gas for a teammate or go for his own chance whenever he can. I’m happy he could finish off his season with such a strong result at Il Lombardia, and who knows what the future brings. Having him with us for three years longer is fantastic.”
Fausto couldn’t be happier. “When you’re in a team like Deceuninck – Quick-Step, you realise it’s a dream. This year we won the World Tour classification, we’re the strongest team. If I would change teams, I would change for what? Secondly, I like how it’s all so professional here and how they study everything. Everything is perfect and each member of the team always aims to improve. I believe in the future of the team and I’m here to continue to grow year by year, as I know I can still step up. It’s a magical team, it’s a big family. It’s not just a job, but you feel a real friendship,” Fausto smiles.
Looking back on his season, the Italian rider has a lot to remember, good and bad. “The first part of 2021 wasn’t bad, not bad until the start of the Giro. The team started the first races in a good way. I was super satisfied then as I took third in the GC in the Tour of Romandie. Until this moment my season evolved in a good way. Then the Giro came and I couldn’t perform well as I had knee tendinitis. I was super sad about stepping out of the Giro, I worked so hard for this first goal and I couldn’t reach it. Also for an Italian rider the Giro is the most important race of the year, especially for a rider with the characteristics like me. I worked a lot on an altitude training camp together with João and Remco before the Giro, to help them and at the same time to perform well myself. The first ten days after I felt really bad, but then I switched my mind and I thought ‘okay the Giro returns every year’ and I looked forward.”
“I fixed my mind on other goals, less than one month after the Giro the nationals were there and I didn’t know if I would reach my normal level. I really like the national championship, if you win you wear the Italian jersey for one year. In Italy that really means a lot, as everyone watches this race. In this case I don’t know if I was unlucky or I just met a stronger rider than myself, as I became second. But again, bad luck was around the corner as I crashed during the third stage of the Settimana Ciclistica Italiana. To have to stop and recover again was harder than the first time. I prepared so well, stayed twenty days on altitude with the team, I worked so hard and then again this, I couldn’t believe it at first. I was still thinking nothing was lost and everything would be fine, but when the team doctor told me I needed to recover one month, it was such a difficult time. Fortunately, I had the support of the team and my family who stayed with me. I wanted to recover as fast as possible, I was scared about the fracture as well. It was the first time I had a fracture on my back, I called the doctor several times a day just to know what I could or couldn’t do. It was such a long time, it felt like ten months instead of one.”
“I tried to stay positive, it was the first time I also didn’t follow the cycling races. I just switched off, I didn’t read the news or watch the races. I read some books, watched some tv series and friends came by to help me pass the time. Then I started to ride my bike again. After three, four rides I could start to train harder again. I was positive to come back strongly and to reach some goals before the end of the season. I restarted at the Tour of Luxembourg, my comeback race. I was super happy for myself and the team, because I worked hard and I felt well. Before Luxembourg I felt good on training, so together with the team we decided I could race again already at Luxembourg. If I wouldn’t have felt well, I wouldn’t have restarted there, as in that case I prefer to train harder and then go to the race. I don’t like to just pin up a number without any goal, I race to perform well.”
“The Tour of Luxembourg, my comeback race, really gave me confidence for the Italian races. It really felt like a victory to me, to come back strong after a hard recovery period. I had some goals set for the end of the season. Especially Il Lombardia was in my mind. This is a race in my home country, I know the roads and everyone would come to support me. The selection in this team is never easy with a lot of strong teammates, so you need to fight for your spot in a monument like Il Lombardia. I tried my best in Milano Torino, in Coppa Bernocchi I took third spot, the team believed in me and I got a place in the squad for Lombardia. I think the second place there was the highest possible. I found a strong rider on my way to Bergamo, he won two times the Tour de France, so I knew it would be difficult. I couldn’t do anything more. I’m happy with that second place. To finish in Bergamo was unbelievable. The last climb was amazing, everyone was supporting me. And now when I analyse my season, seeing how I fought my way back, I think I can be satisfied.”
Fausto Masnada – Solo in Lombardia:
Fumiyuki Beppu Retires
Fumiyuki Beppu will not return to the peloton next season. The 38-year-old Japanese rider of EF Education-Nippo has announced the end of his professional cycling career. In an extensive explanation on social media, Beppu wrote that it is “time to open a new page”.
Beppu made his professional debut in 2005, as a junior. After a strong season, which included winning a stage in the Giro Valle d’Aosta, the Japanese rider was signed by the Discovery Channel, where he became a teammate of Lance Armstrong, he would race for three years. He also had contracts with Skil-Shimano, Team RadioShack, Orica GreenEDGE, Trek-Segafredo and Nippo-Delko-One Provence. He raced for EF Education Nippo in 2021.
After seventeen seasons in the peloton, Beppu is putting an end to his cycling career. “Seventeen years racing on the podium of my dreams has gone by very quickly. I’ve been in Europe for twenty years now and I can see with my own eyes the evolution of cycling over a fifth of a century. Every year was a year to earn a new contract and there was no time to look back. And in 2020, with the pandemic and the changes in modern cycling teams, the things we used to take for granted are no longer the norm.”
The Japanese rider realised it was time to open a new page. “The freedom of cycling that I used to love is hard to find and I notice that I look back on good times. I realised that this was the end of my chapter as a professor. In the future I would like to use my experience to build a bridge between Japan and Europe. I will work as a ‘bicycle promoter’ to promote cycling, provide information and provide training. I will keep cycling, but at a different speed.”
Movistar Team Confirms Men’s Roster for 2022
Alejandro Valverde and four other respected members of the team – Rojas, Erviti, Lluís Mas, Albert Torres – complete Blues’ 29-rider lineup for next year, with eight newcomers.
Having made official on Wednesday – with an emotional video – the contract extension of Alejandro Valverde with the Movistar Team for 2022, the Telefónica-backed squad announced on Thursday that its men’s roster for next season will be finalised with four key members of its current lineup: Imanol Erviti, Albert Torres, Lluís Mas and José Joaquín Rojas.
2022 men’s Movistar Team:
Alex Aranburu (ESP), Jorge Arcas (ESP), Will Barta (USA), Iñigo Elosegui (ESP), Imanol Erviti (ESP), Iván García Cortina (ESP), Abner González (PUR), Juri Hollmann (GER), Gorka Izagirre (ESP), Johan Jacobs (SUI), Matteo Jorgenson (USA), Max Kanter (GER), Oier Lazkano (ESP), Lluís Mas (ESP), Enric Mas (ESP), Gregor Mühlberger (AUT), Mathias Norsgaard (DEN), Nelson Oliveira (POR), Antonio Pedrero (ESP), Vinícius Rangel (BRA), Óscar Rodríguez (ESP), José Joaquín Rojas (ESP), Einer Rubio (COL), Sergio Samitier (ESP), Gonzalo Serrano (ESP), Iván Sosa (COL), Albert Torres (ESP), Alejandro Valverde (ESP), Carlos Verona (ESP).
The roster features 29 names, with up to ten different nationalities and eight new faces: Aranburu, Barta, Kanter, Lazkano, Rangel, Rodríguez, Sosa and returning Gorka Izagirre. Together with the women’s roster, the Blues will remain a 43-athlete group for Abarca Sports’ 43rd season in pro cycling.
Team Roster Lotto Soudal Ladies and U23 Team for 2022
Both the women’s team and U23 team have been completed for 2022. There will be fourteen Lotto Soudal Ladies and the Lotto Soudal Development Team will consist of seventeen riders. With the women’s team, Lotto Soudal now also wants to focus on the youth.
“We want to take another direction with the women’s team and aim for development of young riders,” says Kurt Van de Wouwer sports manager at the Lotto Soudal Ladies and Lotto Soudal U23 team. “That’s what we have been doing, successfully, with the men’s U23 team for several years now and that’s what we now want to achieve with the women’s team as well. That’s why we have chosen to become a continental development team. We have Belgian talents in our team, but we also looked across the border. We want to offer the riders a balanced race programme with which they can get a taste of the Classics, but also with races that better match their current capacities. Then I think of the races that are part of the Lotto Cycling Cup for example. We want to offer these riders time to grow and learn, with the professional support of Lotto Soudal.”
As we already announced on our social media channels, German rider Marla Sigmund (18) and Dutch rider Mijntje Geurts (18) will be joining our team next year. At the Worlds in Leuven Mijntje Geurts conquered the tenth place in the junior road race and this season she won the Bizkaikoloreak, a stage race in the Spanish Basque Country. She has signed an agreement for two seasons. Marla Sigmund doesn’t only ride on the road, but also on the track. This year she became national champion in the madison and points race.
There are four other new riders who will be racing in the Lotto Soudal shirt next year. Two of them are Belgians: Esmée Gielkens (20) and Ines Van de Paar (18). Van de Paar claimed the Flemish junior title at the end of October. She signed a two-year contract.
British rider Josie Knight (24) won the silver medal in the team pursuit at the Olympics past summer. At the Worlds in Roubaix she and the national team claimed bronze. Knight wants to combine track and road and she chose for Lotto Soudal to make this possible. And also Czech rider Kristýna Burlová (19) will join Lotto Soudal. Last year, she got eighth at the junior road race at the European Championships in Plouay and she was fourteenth in the time trial.
Earlier, we already announced the transfers of Eefje Brandt, Katrijn De Clercq, Mieke Docx, Sterre Vervloet and Kylie Waterreus.
“In the future we fully focus on the youth with our women’s team,” continues Kurt Van de Wouwer. “These changes are reflected in the almost entirely new team for next season. Three riders remain in our team. Anna Plichta, who joined our team in 2021 and had a two-year contract, and Abby Mae Parkinson, who starts her third season in our team, are more experienced riders. Elise Vander Sande gets the chance to further develop herself as a rider.”
Dirk Onghena becomes sports director of the women’s team and will be in the car in most races. Since 2002 he was coach at Belgian Cycling and Cycling Vlaanderen.
While the women’s team will consist of fourteen riders, there will be seventeen male U23 riders. We already announced the ten newcomers, seven riders will remain in the team: Ramses Debruyne, Liam Slock, Luca Van Boven, Jarne Van de Paar, Aaron Van der Beken, Lennert Van Eetvelt and Lars Van Ryckeghem.
Lotto Soudal Ladies 2022:
Eefje Brandt, Kristýna Burlová, Katrijn De Clercq, Mieke Docx, Mijntje Geurts, Esmée Gielkens, Josie Knight, Abby Mae Parkinson, Anna Plichta, Marla Sigmund, Ines Van de Paar, Elise Vander Sande, Sterre Vervloet and Kylie Waterreus.
Lotto Soudal Development Team 2022:
Ramses Debruyne, Jelle Harteel, Branko Huys, William Junior Lecerf, Milan Paulus, Gianluca Pollefliet, Matthew Rice, Alec Segaert, Liam Slock, Luca Van Boven, Jarne Van de Paar, Noah Vandenbranden, Aaron Van der Beken, Lennert Van Eetvelt, Vincent Van Hemelen, Cédric Van Raemdonck and Lars Van Ryckeghem.
Chad Haga Comes Home
American returns to team after eight years in the WorldTour, completes 2022 men’s roster.
Chad Haga will return to the team where his professional career began. After racing in the WorldTour for eight years, the 33-year-old from McKinney, Texas signs from Team DSM and completes the men’s team’s roster for 2022.
A peerless rouleur, time-trialist and support rider during his time with WorldTeams, Haga now hopes to “reignite the spark of racing” and pursue his own results on a ProTeam program, a changeup that will allow him to “be in it to win it.”
The American was on Rally Cycling from 2012 through 2013 (then called Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) and won a stage of the Tour of Elk Grove before making the jump up to WorldTour with Team Giant – Shimano in 2014.
“It feels like my career has come full circle,” Haga said. “I had a lot to learn when I first started and the team helped me and then ushered me off into a bigger program at the WorldTour where I spent eight years getting stronger, wiser and more experienced. Now I get to bring that back to the team, which has also grown in the years since. I’m excited to see what we can do together.”
Haga’s successes in that time can be measured by the results he helped others achieve. In that time, he helped teammates win Milan-San Remo and the Giro d’Italia, and rode a total of 12 Grand Tours, finding his own personal victory in 2019 when he won the final day Giro TT in Verona. So, what made 2022 the right time to come back to where his professional dream began?
“I’ve spent eight years as a support rider in the DSM organisation, but I want to enjoy racing as much as I did at the beginning of my career,” Haga explains. “I think this is a great way to kick that off because I’ve watched Rally Cycling race really aggressively for the last few seasons with a lot of success and I’m eager to be a part of that.”
Making the move to the ProTour means less WorldTour racing for the American but it brings a newfound freedom to be able to target his own goals.
“It gives me the opportunity to really push myself to achieve a result. I was always motivated to be in top form and to perform but to have the chance to be the guy going for results, it lights an extra fire in the training and the racing, you can really get in it,” Haga added.
With the return to ProTour being a defining marker in his career, what would Haga say to his 25-year-old departing self? “Prepare to be humbled but you’re going to have a great time and you’ll surprise yourself along the way as well.”
Haga’s return to the organisation is one welcomed by performance manager Jonas Carney, who remembers him as a talented rider and consummate professional. “It was an obvious choice to bring Chad back,” Carney said. “He’s a monster on the bike and an awesome person who will fit right into our group.”
Carney is also excited to see the experiences Haga can bring to the program. “There is no doubt that he can help our younger riders progress more quickly. He’s also capable of producing results himself when given the opportunity. Chad will be a leader in our team, but he will also be given opportunities to target races that suit him,” Carney added.
The team looks forward to re-welcoming Haga to its line-up for 2022. This also brings an end to the men’s team signings for next season. Their first official gathering will be a training camp in Portugal this January.
Men’s team roster 2022:
Arvid de Kleijn
Adam de Vos
Team BikeExchange Look to Develop Talent in Singapore, Signing Chelsie Tan Wei Shi for the 2022 Season
Team BikeExchange is pleased to announce their continued effort in finding and developing international talent, with the signing of Singaporean rider Chelsie Tan Wei Shi for the 2022 season.
The 31-year-old rider has shown a lot of potential, having won multiple Singapore Championship titles despite her late inception to the sport, having only started racing in 2018.
Tan Wei Shi is hoping that this special opportunity to step up into a WorldTour team and race internationally will help continue her rapid development as a professional cyclist, as well as helping to gain maximum exposure for the sport in Singapore.
Brent Copeland, General Manager on Tan Wei Shi:
“We are glad to have Chelsie with us for 2022 season. GreenEDGE Cycling has always looked to support the development of new riders from new countries and regions, and now working with the Singapore Cycling Federation, in collaboration with Shayne Bannan, we can be satisfied in having found a strong rider such as Chelsie for the upcoming year. This is going to be her first season in the Women’s WorldTour peloton; therefore, it’s going to be a big learning process for her, and we will support her in the best way possible to help her develop her skills.”
Dr Hing Siong Chen, President Singapore Cycling Federation on Tan Wei Shi:
“This is a fantastic cycling and life experience opportunity for Chelsie. We are looking forward to watching her progression as the first Singaporean Female in the Women’s WorldTour. It’s going to be exciting seeing her develop her skills with one of the best teams in the peloton. We do hope that thanks to her experience, many other local athletes will be inspired to reach important targets in cycling and sport.”
Chelsie Tan Wei Shi: “I am really excited and humbled to have this incredible opportunity to be part of Team BikeExchange. For me, Team BikeExchange embodies everything that a good team should be, some outstanding individual talents, combined with a focused team and everyone working together to improve. I want to integrate quickly into the team and contribute from day one. I am excited and motivated by the fact that I will be racing regularly again. The COVID-19 situation in this part of the world has meant many races have been cancelled, so to race, and at WorldTour level, is going to be amazing! I would like to thank my coach and the team at Singapore Cycling Federation for helping me to get to this point in my career. I am determined to make all of you proud.”
Chelsie Tan Wei Shi
Date of birth: 17th January 1990 (31)
Joins Team BikeExchange: 2022
New Contract: 2022
1st 2021 & 2019 & 2018 Singapore Team Time Trial Championships
1st 2021 Tour of Phuket
1st 2019 National Road Race Championships
2nd 2021 Singapore Individual Time Trial Championships
2nd 2x 2021 Cyclosport Jungle Cross II
3rd 2019 National Individual Time Trial Championships
Michal Golas Joins Bahrain Victorious as Sports Director
Bahrain Victorious are pleased to announce the appointment of Michał Gołaś as a Sports Director for the 2022 season.
Gołaś makes his transition to Sports Director after 11 years in the WorldTour: “I’m excited to start a new chapter with Bahrain Victorious with new ambitions and goals. I’m motivated to work hard and get experience in the new role. I jump straight from the bike to the team car, so I’ll try to share my experience gained as a rider, but there is a lot to learn from this ambitious group.”
Manuela Fundación Starts First Year as a Conti Team
Manuela Fundación was in the running to take over Mitchelton-Scott, but after that deal fell through, the Spanish firm has started a continental team of its own. The team presented eleven riders and their kit for 2022.
Isaac Cantón was a pro at Burgos-BH for the past two seasons, but he is leaving for an adventure at Manuela Fundación. He is the only rider with professional experience in the team. A number of riders come over from the amateur team that Manuela Fundación already had.
The continental team is headed by Emilio Rodríguez, Fran Puñal, José Manuel Moreno and José Vicente Bonillo. In the Clàssica CV in Valencia (January 23, 2022), Manuela Fundación Continental will make her debut in a UCI race.
Manuela Fundación is a Spanish non-profit organisation led by businessman Francisco Huertas and his wife Maria Angustias González.
Manuela Fundación riders for 2022:
The jersey is special:
EF Education First Joins TIBCO, Silicon Valley Bank as Co-Title Sponsor in 2022
Full-time riders to be paid men’s WorldTour minimum as starting point; EF Education-TIBCO-SVB has applied for WorldTour status.
In 2004, Linda Jackson started working with a local women’s cycling team in Palo Alto, California. In 2006, Jackson asked a sponsor for $100,000 to get her new team to a few national races. The partner had $5,000. Her response?
“I’ll take it.”
And brick by brick over the last 17 years, Jackson, a former investment banker turned Canadian professional racer, built a team to compete on a national level and provide meaningful support to the next generation of professional women cyclists.
Over a period spanning almost two decades, the TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank team and riders have won WorldTour races, national championships and domestic races. They have produced national champions as well as Olympians and World Championship contenders. Beyond road racing, their athletes have raced gravel, cyclocross and track.
Now, the team that started at local races in 2004 with the goal of getting to a few national events will step up to the WorldTour in 2022, and EF Education First will join as a co-title partner. The team’s original mission — to help women reach their goals in a healthy and supportive environment — remains central. As a starting point, all women racing for the team full-time will be paid the men’s WorldTour minimum salary.
The team is the longest-running women’s team in North America and one of the most tenured in the sport, thanks to the long-standing support of TIBCO and Silicon Valley Bank. EF Education First is proud to be part of the team as it charts a new course into the future of women’s cycling.
“We’re excited to be part of this team and to help these amazing riders reach their goals. The salary component is incredibly important to all of us, because it allows the riders to pursue the sport full-time,” said Maria Norrman, global chief of staff at EF Education First. “We can’t wait to help add the next chapter in this team’s great history.”
Jackson, who has led the team every step of the way, sees a huge opportunity, for both her team and the sport as a whole. “I’m thrilled to be a part of the professionalisation of women’s cycling. The opportunity these women have now is amazing. I’ve been in the sport for 30 years; I raced in the ‘90s in horrendous conditions and with very little support. It’s been a long road, but to see money finally coming into the sport so that women can make a living while racing their bikes is a very gratifying feeling,” Jackson said.
Her goal is to steadily improve the team without losing focus on its developmental roots.
“The sporting goal of this team is to be a top five WorldTour team in a few years. We don’t need to be the number one team in the world. That’s not my objective. My objective is to help these women reach their potential,” she said. “To become Olympians, world champions, World Championship participants, whatever their goals are. EF’s partnership has enabled us to bring on top-tier staff to provide our riders with the infrastructure and support they need to achieve these goals in a supportive environment.”
Several of the EF Education-NIPPO partners will support the EF Education-TIBCO-SVB team as well, including Cannondale, Rapha, WHOOP, and POC.
Cannondale has worked with TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank team since 2019, partnering with the team on gravel and road racing equipment.
“Collaborating with EF and other key team partners with the TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank team as they grow to WorldTour is an ideal evolution of our continued support and our commitment to women’s cycling,” said Jonathan Geran, director of sports marketing for Cannondale.
The team is composed of 13 riders from six different countries and will welcome seven new riders in 2022, two of which return to the team for the second time. The team will announce its full roster in the coming weeks.
“I’m really excited about the potential that our roster has. As we step up to WorldTour status, our strategy is to focus on finding emerging talent that we can mold into the next generation of top international riders,” Jackson said. “We have a diverse mix of multi-talented riders including climbers, all-arounders and stage winners and will build our calendar accordingly. In addition to the WorldTour we will also continue our alternative calendar emphasis, which is a great fit with EF.”
2022 promises to be an exciting season on the women’s circuit, as the Tour de France offers another marquee event, and the recent Paris-Roubaix Femmes set the stage for years to come. The EF Education-TIBCO-SVB team will also continue its pioneering spirit of racing “alternative” events across the world. Beyond the race results, the team’s dream is to inspire more women to ride.
“Women have demonstrated for years now how exciting their sport can be and what they are capable of. I truly believe that the media exposure around the new Paris-Roubaix for women and the emergence of the Tour de France Femmes next season are helping to draw more women to the sport,” Jackson said. “A friend of mine just told me yesterday how her local cycling club has seen an influx of women this past year. We’re at an inflection point where young women are seeing cycling for the first time and thinking, ‘This is a sport that I can do.’ That’s exactly what women’s cycling needs, growth in the base of the pyramid. Now it’s up to us to keep pushing.”
Alison Jackson in Flèche Wallonne:
Aevolo Announces 2022 Roster, Moves to Amateur Status
The Aevolo cycling team will shift to amateur status in 2022, enabling more logistical flexibility, racing options, and rider development in Europe and beyond for the upcoming season. The move allows for the ability to bring riders on during the season, as well as the capacity to place them in continental or pro continental teams if the opportunity arises.
“With our objectives shifting towards European racing and no guarantee of any .1 races happening in the states, it makes sense to not bind ourselves to UCI regulations of roster sizes, mid-year transfers and/or not being able to do some U23 races while in Europe,” team director Michael Creed said. “I understand that this could look like a slide backward from the outside, but this is a step up for us.”
Some of the Aevolo team line up for a training race during team camp earlier this year.
Since our inaugural season in 2017, we’ve witnessed unforgettable accomplishments and performances, backed several national champions, and navigated a 2020 racing calendar plagued by Covid-19 related postponement and cancelations.
However, at the end of this year, we’ll have the majority of our riders officially “aging out” of the program. We wish them the best as they move forward with their cycling careers – some staying stateside and others finding their home base on international squads. The farewells never get easier, but we take heart in knowing our graduating alums will forever be part of the Aevolo family.
Along with our new approach to the ever-evolving road race calendar, we’re pleased to announce our squad for 2022. Our returning riders are Aidan McNeil, Gabriel Shipley, and Tristan Jussame, who won the Canadian U23 time trial championships in early September.
“As a rider returning for my second year on Aevolo, I’m looking forward to racing with the squad over in Europe,” Shipley said. “This year, I was exposed to the frantic European style of racing under the wings of my experienced Aevolo teammates, and I’m excited to lay the foundation with the new squad I will grow with for the next three seasons.”
Joining Shipley, McNeil, and Jussame will be Cole Lewis, Sean Guydish, Matthew Warren, Tobias Klein, Cooper Johnson and Luca Scuriatti.
“I’m absolutely over the moon to be joining Aevolo for 2022,” Lewis said. “To be a part of such a special program and be welcomed into a community of high-performance athletes is truly a dream come true. I can’t thank Michael Creed and the rest of the team enough for bringing me on board (but I’m going to try!). I’m stoked to be able to test myself against the nation’s best and international talent overseas. I can’t wait to meet the guys, and to train harder than I ever have before to make 2022 the best year yet. Let’s go champ!”
Team Novo Nordisk Extend Partnership with GSG Through 2023
Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all diabetes professional cycling team, today announced the extension of their working partnership with Italian sportswear manufacturer GSG for the 2022 and 2023 seasons.
Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all diabetes professional cycling team today announced the extension of their fruitful working partnership with Italian sportswear manufacturer GSG, continuing a collaborative relationship that goes back to 2018.
Based in Treviso in the heart of the stunning, historic Veneto region in Northern Italy the family run company has been at the forefront of advanced technical sportswear since 1984 and remains a handmade in Italy producer to this day.
“We are very happy and proud to continue our great working relationship with GSG,” said TNN General Manager, Vassili Davidenko. “It is extremely important to us to have a technical partner of the caliber of GSG who is able to work with our athletes in a dynamic way year on year and meet our needs for the highest quality cycling clothing throughout the changing seasons of the professional cycling calendar.”
“In the world of mass production that we live, it’s something special to be able to race and train in kit that’s handmade in Italy. That still means something, and it doesn’t only apply to the manufacturing process, but also how we work together as people and we are very much looking forward to the future and all the success that holds.”
Padova native Andrea Peron is just one of the Team Novo Nordisk riders that works closely with GSG throughout the season and the experienced sprinter knows how important it is for a cyclists clothing to be of the highest quality and adaptability.
“To be able to race in kit that’s made so close to home is great and gives me a buzz every time I zip my jersey up,” said Peron. “We’ve been working with GSG for the past four years and they feel like part of the team now, which is really important when you need to give feedback from a comfort and technical point of view.”
“As professional cyclists we spend hundreds of hours over thousands of kilometres in our cycling kit, so it needs to work and above all it needs to be technically advanced and comfortable, like a second skin. We’re lucky that we have that with GSG.”
A successful working relationship is based not only on respect, but also the understanding that to be mutually beneficial the collaboration is best served by open, free flowing communication and an understanding of each other’s core values.
“We are happy and proud to be able to support Team Novo Nordisk for the next two seasons,” said GSG Marketing Manager Alessandro Costa. “This is a partnership with the American team that has provided great results in terms of visibility to GSG and one where a strong relationship has developed that has brought attention to our #challengeyourlimits brand value to the highest levels of world cycling.”
“We believe that the best is yet to come. The development pipeline within the team is identifying and developing the next generation of elite athletes with diabetes. An area that we place great importance in and a philosophy that is close to our own. The global diabetes community recognises and admires Team Novo Nordisk and though this reach, the world now also knows GSG as a high-quality technical sports apparel producer operating the top-level of competitive cycling. This is a winning partnership that we hope continues to be successful for many years to come.”
Alternative Tour Down Under Course Revealed
The Santos Festival of Cycling takes place in January through the Barossa Valley wine region, the Adelaide Hills and along the rugged coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula, according to the organisers of the event. Just like this year, the Santos Festival of Cycling will replace the traditional Tour Down Under in 2022.
Hitaf Rasheed, director of the Tour Down Under, says that the possibilities have been looked at to keep the WorldTour race again next year. “The Tour Down Under is Australia’s biggest race, the place where road cycling kicks off every year and an event that is very important for South Australia. That’s why it was critical that we considered the possibility of holding the event in January 2022.”
After much consultation with the UCI, teams and other stakeholders, Rasheed and his team came to the conclusion that it was not possible to hold the WorldTour race in 2022. “We are now focusing our attention and energy on the 2022 Santos Festival of Cycling and are inviting riders and cycling fans from across the country to travel to South Australia to be a part of it. We would like to thank all our partners of the event.”
The three-day stage races for women and men are scheduled for January 23-25 and January 27-29 respectively. Race directors Stuart O’Grady and Kimberley Conte were responsible for the design of the course. “The mix of natural terrain, from the lush Barossa vineyards to the undulating Adelaide Hills and the rugged coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula, makes this event unique on the calendar,” said O’Grady.
This year Luke Durbridge won the first edition of the Santos Festival of Cycling. Sarah Gigante was the final winner of the women’s race.
Santos Festival of Cycling 2022
Stage race for men:
27/1 – stage 1: Stirling – Lobethal (114.2km)
28/1 – Stage 2: Mount Lofty – Woodside (112.9km)
29/1 – Stage 3: McLaren Vale – Willunga Hill (113.2km).
Stage race for women:
23/1 – Stage 1: Tanunda – Williamstown (86.1km)
24/1 – stage 2: McLaren Vale – Echunga (85.7km)
25/1 – stage 3: Lobethal – Lobethal (86.9 km).
Maryland Cycling Classic Announces 2022 Event Date, Start and Finish Locations, and First Team Commitment
Inaugural Event is America’s Top One-Day Pro Cycling Race
The Maryland Cycling Classic supported by UnitedHealthcare, America’s top-ranked one-day professional road cycling event, today announced its official UCI calendar date, start and finish locations and the first team to join the line-up. Race day will take place on Sunday September 4, 2022 after the event had to be postponed the past two years due to COVID-19.
“We are excited to host the inaugural edition of the Maryland Cycling Classic and bring a free, public world-class event to the state,” said Terry Hasseltine, president of the Sport & Entertainment Corporation of Maryland. “We have been fortunate to keep our core partners together including the state of Maryland, City of Baltimore, Baltimore County, and our presenting sponsor UnitedHealthcare. We look forward to next year’s race with great anticipation.”
The race will start in Sparks, Md., at the headquarter of Kelly Benefits Strategies, and finish on Pratt Street in Baltimore’s famous Inner Harbour.
“We’ve been able to work through a lot of details to define both start and finish areas that will deliver a competitive, world-class course,” said the event’s Chair, John Kelly, who is also the chief innovative and strategy officer for Kelly Benefits Strategies. “The course will feature the scenic beauty and hilly terrain of Baltimore County and an urban circuit within Baltimore that will showcase several local communities and neighbourhoods.”
“Baltimore continues to be a premier destination for sporting events. The Maryland Cycling Classic is our nation’s top one-day cycling event with professional athletes from more than 25 countries. The Classic will showcase our great city to a global audience,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “We welcome everyone, visitors and residents, to enjoy this free public event and experience Baltimore’s exceptional hospitality and world-class amenities.”
“The Maryland Cycling Classic will not only showcase Baltimore County’s scenic communities and vibrant offerings but will continue to show that we are primed to be a premier destination for signature sporting events,” Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski said. “Baltimore County is thrilled to be a host of this world-class weekend of cycling.”
The first team commitment for the 2022 race also was announced. The Rally Cycling Team, one of America’s top teams which includes two-time Tour of Spain stage winner and former U.S. National Champion, Ben King, will participate.
“A top-level race close to home is a dream for any cyclist,” said King. “After years without a single race of this caliber in the USA, I couldn’t be more excited that the Maryland Cycling Classic will bring some of the best competition to the East Coast. It’s thrilling from both a fan and rider perspective.”
“USA Cycling is excited to see the Maryland Cycling Classic step up to become America’s top-ranked professional road race in 2022,” said USA Cycling President & CEO Rob DeMartini. “The race will showcase the State of Maryland and City of Baltimore while offering a fantastic competition venue for international participants.” The event is sanctioned by UCI, the international federation for the sport and USA Cycling, the national governing body for the sport in the U.S.
UnitedHealthcare has continued its commitment as the event’s presenting sponsor.
“UnitedHealthcare looks forward to advancing this partnership with the Maryland Cycling Classic to bring elite cycling to Baltimore,” said Joe Ochipinti, CEO of UnitedHealthcare’s Mid-Atlantic region. “We remain committed to presenting a world-class event that promotes a healthy lifestyle for those across Maryland and the region.”
The charity ride Bridges of Hope that benefits UnitedHealthcare’s Children’s Foundation was also announced by Kelly. The event will take place Saturday morning, September 3 in Sparks. Fundraisers will be able to ride part of the course.
In addition to UHC, the following initial roster of sponsors were announced: State of Maryland, Visit Baltimore, Kelly Benefits Strategies, Thorne Health Tech, and Athlos Sportswear.
The Maryland Cycling Classic will include a series of events to be announced in the new year, including community outreach and cycling education programs in Baltimore and Baltimore County.
Race day activities will include a free entertainment festival showcasing the region as well as local and national vendors in the cycling industry, plus additional participation events. Further details to be announced in Spring 2022.
For sponsorship/partner information: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Additional info: www.marylandcyclingclassic.us.
Filippo Pozzato Hospitalised Due to Corona Virus
Former professional cyclist Filippo Pozzato has been hospitalised because of the corona virus. The 40-year-old Italian, winner of Milan-San Remo and two Tour stages, became ill two weeks ago and turned out to have the virus.
Pozzato thought that nothing would happen to him with his strong body, he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “You hear people say the coronavirus is nothing, but that’s not true. I couldn’t get up. And now I’m on oxygen,” the 40-year-old Italian former pro with Mapei-QuickStep, Fassa Bortolo, Liquigas, Katusha and Lampre-Merida, told the newspaper. “I don’t have an oxygen mask yet, but if it gets worse they’ll put one on me.”
Immediately after organising the Giro del Veneto (October 13), the Serenissima gravel race (October 15) and the Veneto Classic (October 17), Pozzato decided to get vaccinated. “The appointment was set for October 25. Why wasn’t I vaccinated before? Because I’ve always felt strong. I’ve been with people who had Covid and nothing had ever happened to me. I was a sucker, and I got it.”
Two days before his injection appointment, Pozzato became ill. “Fever all day, 37.5 degrees, then 38 degrees. I immediately took a test, it was Covid. Then I had a fever of 39 degrees for almost ten days, I was almost there. For the past few days my fever went away, but my oxygen saturation dropped. I couldn’t even stand up and they brought me here. I’ve always been healthy, I’ve never caught anything, but the Covid knocked me unconscious.”
Arturo Grávalos, Successfully Operated of a Brain Tumour
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.
Wahoo Frontiers: Pete Kennaugh
Wahoo’s latest Frontiers episode, featuring former World Tour professional cyclist Peter Kennaugh on location in his native Isle of Man. Despite a dream of a cycling career, Pete made a tough decision ahead of the 2019/2020 season and closed the book on his racing career to focus on his family, mental health, and explore life beyond cycling. Follow along as we dig through Pete’s rise to the top of the sport, his reasons for retiring so young, and how he has learned to fall in love with riding and endurance sport once more.
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