EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

The Vuelta a España has had a good overall shake-up after Tuesday’s time trial – Primoz Roglic is in charge, but can he hold on till Madrid? Reports, results, quotes and video from Spain. No Olympic road race for Mathieu van der Poel – Top Story. Lots of other cycling news: Arkéa-Samsic to win the Tour, Rolf Aldag leaves Dimension Data, loads of contract news, Tour of Britain riders, Euskadi-Murias to stop and Egan Bernal to ride Lombardia. A fun-packed EUROTRASH Thursday.

TOP STORY: Mathieu van der Poel will not ride the Olympic Road Race
Mathieu van der Poel will not participate in the road race at the Olympic Games next year. He told De Telegraaf that the time between the mountain bike race and the road race is too short.

“That is far too difficult, participation in the road race at the Games is not an option,” says Van der Poel. There are only two days between the two races. The road race is on July 25, while two days later the Olympic mountain bike race follows. “I thought about it for a while, but that was at an early stage when the first data showed that there was a bigger gap between the road race and mountain biking.”

Van der Poel will first focus on the World championships this autumn. He feels that the course in Yorkshire is similar to that of the Amstel Gold Race, which he won in the spring. “There are no long climbs, but no flat. In addition, there are many narrow roads,” he says. “Of course you don’t get the chance to race on a course that suits me so well at a World champs that often. I don’t want to let them go.” The World championships road race in Yorkshire will be held on Sunday 29th September.

Worlds road race – Olympic MTB:

Vuelta a España 2019
Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) delivered a dominant performance in the Stage 10 individual time-trial from Jurançon to Pau (36.2km) to claim both the stage win and the leader’s red jersey after 10 days of racing in La Vuelta 19. The Slovenian opened significant gaps on his rivals for the overall victory in Madrid. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) is second on GC, trailing by 1:52. Nairo Quintana (Movistar), who was leading the race before this time trial, is now 3 minutes down. Roglic is only the second Slovenian rider to wear La Roja in La Vuelta history.

Lennard Hofstede (Jumbo-Visma) was the first of the 166 participants to start. He rode conservatively while Pawel Bernas (CCC) set the first reference time of 50:52. His teammate William Barta was the first to break the 50 minute bar with 49:17.

The French national champion Benjamin Thomas (Groupama-FDJ) was 6 seconds faster and held the hot seat for about 10 minutes, only to be edged by his compatriot Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) with a time of 47:32. Patrick Bevin (CCC) limits his losses in the climbs and powers to the best time in the final run in to Pau, 2 seconds ahead of Cavagna.

Majors loss for Quintana
Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) has a strong start, 11 seconds faster than Cavagna at the first intermediate point. But Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) comes in flying, 21 seconds ahead of his compatriot. After 11.9km, he already opened a big differences: Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) drops 38 seconds, Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana) is at 1:03 and Nairo Quintana (Movistar), with La Roja on his shoulders, already lost 1:26.

Primoz Roglic kept pushing until the finish and caught Miguel Angel Lopez in the last 500m. With a time of 47:05, he takes both the stage win, 25 seconds ahead of Patrick Bevin, and La Roja, 1:52 ahead of Alejandro Valverde. Nairo Quintana drops 3:06 on the finish line.

See the ‘PEZ Stage 10 Report’ HERE.

Stage winner and overall leader, Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma): “I tried to go as fast as possible. It was enough for the win today. For me it was important to stay focused and pedal as hard as possible. That is all I had in my control today. We are still at the start of the Vuelta and we will see in Madrid whether this lead is enough to win the race. We have had some rough days already, but there are also difficult stages to come. Now it is important to stay healthy and then we will look at it day by day. I will have to handle the race together with the team, but we have a strong team.”

2nd on the stage, Patrick Bevin (CCC): “It’s disappointing but Primoz has been the form TT rider all year so, to win here you had to be really good because he’s been the benchmark all season. Second is second. I’ve been here before and sat in a few hot seats and had him come over the top, that’s bike racing. I’ll be chipping away and I will get one eventually. It’s been a rough season for me and I’ve turned it around in the back end with an eye on the Worlds so, to have strong legs ten days into the Vuelta is good but, obviously you always want a little bit more. We will keep working, go back to the drawing board and keep pushing. It was a super hard course. I knew, having ridden it, that it was a tough one to read and that it could go towards the climbers but, Primoz is not a pure climber, he’s been the best all year in time trials. I’m pretty disappointed with second really, as I came here with this one stage marked but, for me, getting this stage out of the way opens up the second part of the race. I’ve been trying to build my form and get my racing legs back over this first part and now we will look towards the rest of the race and target some more stages. You had to have power all day. It was quite hard to start off like that though with the 2.5 kilometre climb so, it was about making sure you had a bit of reserve left and overall, it was about delivering a performance of over 47 minutes. There was no hiding and nowhere to recover.”

2nd overall, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar): “1:38 against Roglic? Well’, it’s not too bad. It’s within what we expected. He was the strongest favourite for this TT. I felt well, maybe a bit emptier near the end, but it’s normal, it was a long course. I think we made a very decent effort. I took some time yesterday to look thoroughly at what’s left in this Vuelta, and it’s incredible – so many hard mountains still remaining. We’re still in contention, though – we still feel alright and anything can happen. As well as Roglic – who has already shown how strong he also is uphill – and López, Pogacar will also be a rival to take into account. Hadn’t he crashed at the opening TTT, he would be even closer to us. Let’s go day by day, there’s still a lot to happen in this race. It will be another tricky finish tomorrow. A minute ahead or behind Nairo doesn’t mean anything for our plans, to be honest. We’re actually a bit tired about everything the press says about our leadership plans – we’re both here to do our best and seek for a common goal, which is winning a Grand Tour for Movistar, no matter who claims it.”

3rd overall, Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana): “I feel good. Quite good, actually. My intention was to lose less than two minutes, and in the end it wasn’t possible because Roglic overtook me on the finish line. Regardless of this, I’m content because I’m still on the mix for GC and there is a lot of racing left. The course today was quite hard, and beautiful. There was a lot of terrain to push and ask the most of ourselves. Both Roglic and Pogacar seem quite strong at this point: I’m sure they will be up there until the very end of La Vuelta 19.”

4th overall, Nairo Quintana (Movistar): “It’s clear that while we worked to obtain a better result, it wasn’t my best time trial ever. I hoped to be around two minutes behind Roglic; three is more than I expected. Still, though, we’re into the overall fight. The fact that I didn’t do a good time trial doesn’t mean I’m not feeling strong. There will be chances to attack in the upcoming stages, to seek some good strategies with the team and take advantage from the race situations to make up time against Roglic. We’ve been in similar situations to this in the past and, even though some did go as expected, others turned into massive success. Let’s see how we can do in the next few days. Alejandro is still close in the GC, and with him and myself we’ve got two strong chances. I’ve got nothing to lose. Let’s take advantage and enjoy the race.”

5th overall, Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates): “It was a hard TT but I felt great so I just went full gas when I could. On the downhills I rested a bit but after the second hill I was struggling a bit so had to pace myself. It was my dream to wear the Slovenian TT jersey in a Grand Tour and today I got to do it and represent my country. I think today was perfect for Roglic so I think so it’s not a surprise he won.”

6th on the stage, Pierre Latour (AG2R-La Mondiale): “I recovered well during the rest day. From the first climb, I saw that my legs were responding well so I didn’t have to question myself. This type of course where you are always on the edge is more to my advantage than a really flat course which is more for the rouleurs. This is the first time in a long time that I felt right in a time trial, and that’s nice. This is a discipline that I love. I often train with the time trial bike at home in the Rhone Valley, and that’s mainly why I’m not doing too badly now. I am no longer well placed in the general classification. My form is still too irregular for that. Now, I want to get into a breakaway to try to win a stage.”

7th overall, Rafał Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe): “I am happy with my performance. I was going good through all the corners and downhill sections, but it wasn’t an easy course today, therefore I am happy to finish inside the top 20 and moving up to seventh again on the general classification. The time trial is done, now we have to focus on the upcoming mountain stages, which will decide La Vuelta.”

Vuelta a España Stage 10 Result:
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 47:05
2. Patrick Bevin (NZ) CCC at 0:25
3. Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:27
4. Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First at 0:48
5. Nelson Oliveira (Por) Movistar at 1:02
6. Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale at 1:14
7. Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal at 1:21
8. Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar at 1:22
9. Dylan Teuns (Bel) Bahrain-Merida at 1:27
10. Daniel Felipe Martínez (Col) EF Education First at 1:28.

Vuelta a España Overall After Stage 10:
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 36:05:29
2. Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar at 1:52
3. Miguel Ángel López (Col) Astana at 2:11
4. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar at 3:00
5. Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 3:05
6. Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal at 4:59
7. Rafał Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 5:42
8. Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis at 5:49
9. Dylan Teuns (Ned) Bahrain-Merida at 6:07
10. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Sunweb at 6:25.

Mikel Iturria (Euskadi-Murias) took his first professional win with a brilliant ride to Urdax on Stage 11 of La Vuelta 19. Only a few kilometres away from his home, the Basque rider featured in the 14-man breakaway that animated the day. He soloed away from his companions in the last 25 kilometres and a massive effort saw him hold on to a 6 second lead on the line. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) safely rode to the finish inside the bunch, 18:35 behind the winner, to retain La Roja on the eve of a tricky stage to Bilbao.

Many riders in the bunch believe stage 11 is another one for the long range attackers and it leads to a hard battle for the breakaway. 11 riders jump ahead of the bunch after 9km: Jorge Arcas (Movistar), François Bidard (AG2R-La Mondiale), Gorka Izagirre (Astana), Lawson Craddock (EF Education First), Damien Howson (Mitchelton-Scott), Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier, Ben O’Connor (Dimension Data), Matteo Fabbro (Katusha-Alpecin), Angel Madrazo (Burgos-BH), Alex Aranburu (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) and Mikel Iturria (Euskadi-Murias).

The early attackers were joined by Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) at km 17, and then by Benjamin Thomas (Groupama-FDJ) and Jonathan Lastra (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) at km 28. The peloton already trailed by 6:40. Primoz Roglic’s Jumbo-Visma set the pace in the bunch and the gap went up to 8:20 at the summit of the Col d’Osquich (km 77.2), where Angel Madrazo took 3 KOM points.

Iturria’s brilliant solo ride
The gap increases to 10 minutes on the second climb of the day, the Col d’Ispéguy (cat-2) and the leaders started to attack each other. Alex Aranburu and Gorka Izagirre opened a gap in the last kilometre of the climb and keep pushing on the downhill. Lawson Craddock joined them ahead of the third climb of the day. The chasers trail by 25 seconds and the gap to the bunch is up to 13 minutes.

The battle kept going on the final climb of the day but the chasers get back. Mikel Iturria goes on his move with 25km to go. He opens a gap as high as 48 seconds with 15km to go. His chasers get closer and closer… but Iturria holds on to a 6 second margin at the finish line to claim his first victory as a professional rider. The bunch finished at 18:35, but Primoz Roglic retained La Roja.

Read the ‘PEZ Stage 11 Report’ with lots of photos HERE.

Stage winner, Mikel Iturria (Euskadi-Murias): “To win at La Vuelta, and furthermore close to home and with my family around, is a dream come true. Before I came to the race, when the selection was made, they asked me which stage I’d like to win, and I chose this one. I’m not a cyclist used to winning and to open my record at La Vuelta is a dream. I suffered a lot in the climbs. I was feeling good but I suffered more than usual with the accelerations. When I got to the front, Jon Odriozola (the team manager) told me: ‘Attack with all you got and go to the finish!’ I listened to him and I opened a nice gap. I gave my all the whole time, pushing to be as fast as possible, finding strength I didn’t know I had. I wasn’t thinking of the gap, I focused on myself. And I won! I don’t have words for this. We’ll have to toast with champagne tonight!”

Overall leader, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma): “It was a bit of a hard start but then it was a nice day and my team did a great job. Tony Martin is my roommate and a very strong guy. With Lennard (Hofstede), he’s here to pull on the flat whereas Sepp (Kuss) or George (Bennett) are climbing guys. Neilson (Powless) is an all-rounder, Robert (Gesink) is a strong guy also for the mountains. We’ve proven this is a big team already. I don’t think tomorrow’s stage is more dangerous than the high mountains. I don’t have any problem with short climbs. We need to be focused on the moment and do our best.”

5th on the stage, François Bidard (AG2R-La Mondiale): “After finishing sixth in one Giro stage and then third at the Tour de Suisse, I wanted to win today. Of course, I am a bit disappointed. I was not missing it by much. The finish was very tactical and everyone was looking at each other. The final downhill was not necessarily what suited me best. There are still some nice stages to come, and the team will try again. The goal is for one of us to win a stage.”

9th on the stage, Gorka Izagirre (Astana): “I tried my best today. I felt quite good and I aimed to go in a breakaway today as La Vuelta arrived in Basque Country. I attacked for several times, in a moment I went away with Aranburu and this move looked good, but later the chasing group caught us back. I tried again, but it did not work. Anyway, it was nice for me to spend this day in the leading group.”

3rd overall, Miguel Ángel López (Astana): “We spent more or less quiet stage in the peloton, but in every single moment we stayed focused and concentrated on the race. The stage was hard enough with many climbs and descents, so the team protected me well, keeping out of troubles. I was happy to accumulate some energy in this kind of stage after a very difficult time trial.”

Vuelta a España Stage 11 Result:
1. Mikel Iturria (Spa) Euskadi Basque Country-Murias in 4:36:44
2. Jonathan Lastra (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA at 0:06
3. Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First
4. Damien Howson (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott
5. François Bidard (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
6. Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier (Eri) Dimension Data at 0:09
7. Benjamin Thomas (Fra) Groupama-FDJ at 0:12
8. Matteo Fabbro (Ita) Katusha Alpecin
9. Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Astana
10. Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Deceuninck – Quick-Step.

Vuelta a España Overall After Stage 11:
1. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma at 41:00:48
2. Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar at 1:52
3. Miguel Ángel López (Col) Astana at 2:11
4. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar at 3:00
5. Tadej Pogačar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 3:05
6. Carl Fredrik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal at 4:59
7. Rafał Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 5:42
8. Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis at 5:49
9. Dylan Teuns (Bel) Bahrain-Merida at 6:07
10. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Sunweb at 6:25.

Arkéa-Samsic Wants a Grand Tour Win with Quintana Within Three Years
The transfer has already been confirmed that Nairo Quintana will be riding for the French team for the next three seasons. The 29-year-old Colombian leaves Movistar after eight years, where he made his professional debut in 2012.

At Arkéa-Samsic, the South American climber will be the absolute leader. Quintana may also take several riders with him to the French team. His younger brother Dayer Quintana (Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia-KTM) will also ride for Arkéa-Samsic for three seasons. Diego Rosa (Ineos) and Winner Anacona (Movistar) have signed contracts for two seasons. They come to the team on the advice of Quintana and will ride in the Grand Tours.

Quintana won the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España for Movistar, and was on the final podium of the Tour de France three times. The Colombian won a stage and had the leader’s red jersey for a day at this year’s Vuelta.

Quintana: “The goal is to win the Tour”
“My ambitions remain the same. For myself and for the team, the goal is to compete for a win in the Tour de France,” said Quintana. “This is a turning point in my career, but certainly a positive turning point. We will have to get used to certain things, for example the language, but I will continue to do what I enjoy.”

Hubert: “Win a Grand Tour within three years”
General manager Emmanuel Hubert is looking forward to the next season: “In 2020 our team will consist of 28 riders, who have nothing to fear from the best teams in the WorldTour. We give ourselves three seasons to win a Grand Tour. That is the objective that we want to achieve. The cooperation between Nairo and Warren Barguil must make them stronger, they must use each other. I am convinced that Warren has the capacity to shine in the rankings and we want to help him with that.”

Hubert wants his team to shine in all situations and so he has announced reinforcements for the sprints. It is a public secret that Nacer Bouhanni is en route to Arkéa-Samsic. “My goal is to build one of the most beautiful cycling teams in the World. For this we have to be strict and professional at all levels. We are no longer a small family team,” said Hubert.

A day in red at the Vuelta:

Rolf Aldag Leaves Dimension Data
It’s looking like Dimension Data and performance manager Rolf Aldag will separate at the end of this season. The German former pro, who previously worked for Etixx-Quick Step, is in his fourth season with the South African team. It is not yet known where his future lies.

Aldag came from Etixx-Quick Step in 2016, where he worked as Sport and Development manager for four years. Before that, he was a professional rider between 1991 and 2005. Dimension Data became his new team, where he worked as a performance manager. He would work for that team for four years, but today his retirement was announced.

In a press release, team boss Douglas Ryder praises Rolf Aldag for his broad knowledge of the sport, involvement and belief in the team’s core ideals. “With that we see a valued member leave.” For Aldag, the most cherished reminder is that he and his team brought bicycles to South African children during training camps in Cape Town.

Disagreement about Cavendish
Earlier this season, Ryder and Aldag clashed on leaving Mark Cavendish at home during the Tour de France. The British sprinter would have liked to have ridden, but Ryder decided differently. “It is of course no secret that I would have liked Cavendish to be here”, Aldag said at the time. “Mark was in my selection. The team owner has the right to overrule me in this and he has.”

Rolf Aldag and Bernhard Eisel:

Richard Carapaz to join Team INEOS in 2020
Richard Carapaz will join Team INEOS from the start of the 2020 season.
The reigning Giro d’Italia champion has agreed a three-year deal and will add to an increasingly strong contingent of young international talent on the team.

In winning the Giro earlier this year, the 26-year-old Ecuadorian became the first rider from his country to win a Grand Tour.

Richard Carapaz said: “I am very excited about joining the team. I feel this is a great opportunity for me to continue my development and growth as a rider, working with a team that continues to go from strength-to-strength, year after year. I already know a lot of the riders on the team and I am really looking forward to working everyone at Team INEOS from next season. I believe I will fit into this group well and race to my full potential over the coming years. I want to achieve some great triumphs for Team INEOS.”

As well as his Giro d’Italia success, Carapaz – who becomes Team INEOS’ first signing of 2020 – also has three Giro stage victories to his name, and is a two-time winner of the Vuelta Asturias stage race (2018 & 2019).

Team INEOS Team Principal, Sir Dave Brailsford, welcomed the news of Carapaz’s arrival, commenting: “We are very pleased to have signed Richard from the start of the 2020 season. We have been long time admirers of his talents as a bike rider and have followed his development closely over a number of years, as we have always marked him out as a potential member of our Team. He is obviously a fantastic climber but also has great versatility as he showed at the Giro earlier this year. He is still relatively young and I have no doubt he can develop and improve even further at Team INEOS.”

Giro winner Richard Carapaz:

Hugo Houle Stays with Astana Pro Team until 2022
Astana Pro Team confirms the new 3-year deal with the Canadian rider Hugo Houle, who will defend the colours of the Kazakh team until 2022.

“I really enjoyed my first two years in Astana Pro Team. I found here a nice bunch of friends and a great atmosphere! I feel very comfortable here and I’ve got a strong support from sports directors, staff and my teammates. These two years passed very quickly and now I am looking forward to continue working in this amazing team. I am ready to keep improving as a professional rider, to develop in races, to follow my goals in this sport. I want to keep being a team player as I like to help the leaders. In the same time, I hope to get some personal chances in one-day races or Grand tour stages. My next goals in the final of this season are the WorldTour races in Quebec and Montreal and the World Championships with the National Team of Canada,” said Hugo Houle.

Hugo Houle, 28, has joined Astana Pro Team in 2018 and since then he proved to be a very strong team rider, always ready to support team’s leader in one-day races, week-long races or Grand tours. Also, in these two years Houle has scored a few personal results as a 4th place at the Tour Poitou-Charentes en Nouvelle Aquitaine 2018, an 8th place in the general classification of the Tour of Denmark 2018 and a 5th in the overall standings of the Arctic Race of Norway 2019.

“Hugo is a valuable team rider, always loyal, ready to provide his best for the leader. We saw him in many races working hard for Jakob Fuglsang or Alexey Lutsenko. Hugo is a rider you can always count on in any kind of race. In the same time, during these two seasons he demonstrates a very good progress, he improves as a one-day and stage race rider. I think, he has a potential to become a rider, who can deliver results in short stage race, for example. I am happy to have Hugo Houle in Astana Pro Team for the next three years,” said Alexandr Vinokurov.

You can read our interviews with Hugo in 2018 HERE and 2019 HERE.

Hugo Houle:

Erviti to Stay Two More Years with ‘His’ Movistar Team
35-year-old veteran from Navarra, one of the most respected domestiques in the peloton with 15 seasons of experience in one pro team, will remain linked to Eusebio Unzué’s structure at least through the end of 2021.

The Movistar Team announced Wednesday, as the 2019 Vuelta a España enters Navarra during stage 11 of the race, that Imanol Erviti (Pamplona, ESP; 1983) has signed a new contract with the organisation managed by Eusebio Unzué, his only team as a pro, and will continue to wear the Blue jersey for the next two years, at least through to the end of the 2021 season.

Erviti is a symbol of the Abarca Sports structure, a team he’s been linked to without any interruptions since his pro debut in 2005. During those fifteen seasons – that will be 17 with his new contract – Imanol has been, above all, an invaluable support for his team leaders, which he has escorted through 10 Tours de France consecutively since 2010, plus 12 appearances, 2019 included, in the Vuelta a España, a race which has seen him raising his arms in victory twice in 2008 (Las Rozas) and 2010 (Vilanova i la Geltrú).

The sporting and human quality of this excellent rouleur – top-ten finisher in both the Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix – and team rider will remain to be enjoyed by the Movistar Team, which has in Erviti and indefatigable colleague and friend Alejandro Valverde the longest-standing members of its 2020 structure: fifteen years together.

Valverde and Erviti:

Chris Lawless Agrees New Two-Year Deal
Chris Lawless’ reward for a fine season which saw him clinch Team INEOS’ first-ever victory has arrived in the shape of a new two-year contract.

The 23 year old, who memorably triumphed in the team’s first race under new ownership at the Tour de Yorkshire in May, has agreed a contract extension until the end of 2021.

The British rider believes that victory on home roads just days after the team’s launch in Yorkshire helped paved the way to securing a new deal, commenting: “Obviously after the Tour de Yorkshire, the team were happy with me and it’s nice that they have put their faith in me for another two years.

“I think the win in Yorkshire showed what I am capable of. Of course, it was our first race as Team INEOS and all eyes were on the team, so it was a massive boost to win the race. I look back on that race with really fond memories.”

Lawless, who joined the team in 2018, said he will now use that victory as motivation with the aim of going on to achieve even better things over the next two years, pinpointing the Classics as an ongoing key area of focus, as well as highlighting his dream of riding a Grand Tour in the not too distant future.

“I just want to carry on trying to win bike races and see where that takes me,” he said. “I stepped up quite a bit in the Classics this year and I want to continue to do that again over the next two years – to go further in those races and maybe challenge in some of the smaller Classics too.

“I also really want to put myself in the frame to ride a Grand Tour over the next few years. It’s not easy to get selected to ride one of the three big races of the year, because the depth of talent we have in this team is incredible, but that’s got to be one of my aims.”

The Wigan-born rider believes young British riders are enjoying a ‘really positive period’ at the moment, and he is excited to see what he and his fellow Brits can achieve in the years to come.

“It feels like this is a really positive period for young British riders – not just on this team, but for British cycling in general,” he said.

“There’s a really strong group of young riders and I’m personally excited about seeing what we can all achieve over the next few years – and obviously I want to play a big part in that myself.”

Team INEOS coach, Conor Taylor, said: “Chris’ win at the Tour of Yorkshire was the biggest of his career to date and it highlighted his potential to build on this and win many more races with us in the future.

“We have also seen a step up in his Classics performances this season and his versatility as a rider. We believe he can play a key supporting role for our leaders in the coming seasons.

“This contract extension underpins the team’s faith in him and the progression he has made over the last year. We believe he is in the right environment to help support his development and achieve his ambitions in professional cycling.”

Chris Lawless:

Astana Pro Team Prolongs with Merhawi Kudus
The Eritrean rider Merhawi Kudus will remain in Astana Pro Team for two more seasons. The agreement with the rider has been signed recently for 2020 and 2021.

“I have a really good season with Astana Pro Team so far and I am really happy with the results and a great atmosphere we have here. I am very happy to continue for two more years with the team and I am looking forward for another step in my career. Astana is a very good and tight-knit team, I feel here like in a family, so I am excited to remain here. My biggest goal for the next season is to make a selection in the roster for the Tour de France and to fight there for a stage. This is my dream!” said Merhawi Kudus.

Merhawi Kudus, 25, is spending his debut season in the Kazakh team. He proved to be a good climber and strong helper for the leaders of the team. Thus, in the beginning of the year Kudus won two stages and the general classification of the Tour du Rwanda. Later, in the season he took a solid third place in the overall standings of the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey. At the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana and the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya he was among the riders, who helped to reach the final victory to Ion Izagirre and Miguel Angel Lopez, respectively.

“We invited Merhawi to our team, knowing about his climbing skills and in the first half of the season he proved it for 100%. Kudus is still learning some things and is getting new experience, but we are happy with his progress during the year. He has a few personal results, but also, he impressed us with the way he can help the leaders of the team. So, two more years for Merhawi Kudus in our project and we are looking forward to see his new results in the nearest future,” said Alexandr Vinokurov, general manager of Astana Pro Team.

Merhawi Kudus:

Velasco to Join Gazprom — RusVelo in 2020
The Russian cycling team Gazprom — RusVelo signed the contract with the 23-year-old Italian rider Simone Velasco.

This season Velasco is riding for the Italian team Neri Sottoli – Selle Italia – KTM. In his young age, he already has four professional wins, among them are: victory at Trofeo Laigueglia and stage-win at Settimana Coppie e Bartali.

Simone Velasco said: “I am very happy that I signed for Gazprom — RusVelo. I am sure I made the right choice. The race program for the next season suits me great and at the same time challenges me for new achievements. I will work hard and do my best to claim new victories for my new team.”

Michele Devoti, Sports Director of Gazprom — RusVelo on the newcomer: “Simone Velasco is one of the top-three best young Italian riders today, so we were not the only team interested in him. I am glad that we’ve agreed, and he will ride for us next season. He is a very strong and talented athlete, who already proved that with his results. I am sure Simone will perfectly integrate into the squad and will achieve new victories with Gazprom — RusVelo.”

Michele Devoti:

Team Sunweb Extend Contracts with Storer and Tusveld
On the first rest day at the Vuelta a España, Team Sunweb are pleased to announce the contract extensions of Michael Storer and Martijn Tusveld, with both talents staying with the team until the end of the 2021 season.

Michael Storer (AUS)
After finishing in the top ten on GC at the famous Tour de l’Avenir stage race in back-to-back years, Storer joined the team in 2018. In his opening season he finished fifth on GC at both the Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Slovenia; highlighting his abilities as a strong, talented rider. Still only 22 years old, Storer provides good support for the team on differing terrains as he focuses on his continued development and growth as a rider over the coming seasons.

“I’m happy to extend my contract with the team after two good years with them so far,” explained Storer. “The team has a plan for my development and that’s an approach that suits me; I’m confident of the structure we have made going forward. Working closely together with the team in this way works well for me, and I’m looking forward to continuing in this way in the coming years.”

Team Sunweb coach Marc Reef added: “Although Michael is already in his second season with us, we still see him as a young rider that is a big talent with a lot of potential. We are going to work hard on not only his physical level and attributes but also with our experts in all aspects of cycling to help him develop. We believe that his potential will come to fruition over the coming years that he is with us.”

Michael Storer:

Martijn Tusveld (NED)
Tusveld has had a difficult 2019, suffering a bad crash in Paris-Nice that saw him out of action until June. Help from the team combined with a lot of drive and desire, Tusveld worked hard and fought to come back to the peloton; returning to racing at the Critérium du Dauphiné. Tusveld is a rider who performs well on both the climbs and time trials, capable of providing great support for a GC leader. A strong showing at the recent BinckBank Tour highlights that Tusveld is back on track in terms of performance, ready to embark on his second Grand Tour with the team at the Vuelta and continue his development over the coming years.

“After my accident in March I knew I would be out for a long time,” said Tusveld. “I was very happy with the confidence the team has in me, they immediately came to me to tell me that I could sign a new contract with them. I feel at home and in the right place with the team and hope to be important for them in not only in the Vuelta but also the following years.”

Team Sunweb coach Marc Reef added: “Martijn has had a really difficult year after his crash in Paris–Nice but he has worked hard to come back. We have big trust in his capabilities as a rider and we are happy to extend his contract. The first focus for him will be in GC support at one week stage races and Grand Tours. We will also focus on his general development as we feel that he is a rider who still has a lot more potential in both climbing and in time trials.”

Martijn Tusveld:

Kiwi Hamish Beadle Moves Up to Team Novo Nordisk Pro Squad
Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all-diabetes pro cycling team, is bringing one of its best development team athletes, New Zealander Hamish Beadle, onto the men’s pro squad for the 2020 season.

“Hamish came to us as a fearless kid, who was willing to fight for victory from day 1. He has carried that attitude forward, and through each step, doubled down on his work ethic and willingness to make sacrifices on and off the bike so that he can continue to win,” Team Novo Nordisk CEO and co-founder Phil Southerland said. “He has a bike racer’s instinct and can read a race well. Over the past season, he’s made big strides in his climbing, breakaway prowess and diet while continuing to have a superfast finish. I look forward to seeing Hamish as part of the Team Novo Nordisk’s family for years to come.”

Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at only three years of age, Beadle doesn’t remember life without the condition. He grew up in an active family, and both his father and brother raced bikes. By age eight, he was already competing. As a junior in New Zealand, Beadle earned rankings on both the national and international track level. Additionally, he and his teammates set the New Zealand national record in the U17 team pursuit and U19 team sprint.

Hamish Beadle

Beadle is part of a long line of athletes that Team Novo Nordisk discovered through its annual Talent ID Camps. The team brings in youth with type 1 diabetes from around the world to Athens, GA as an entry into the team’s development pipeline. Following the 2015 Talent ID camp, Hamish decided to switch disciplines from the track to the road and has raced as part of the team’s junior and development squads for the past five seasons.

“One of the things that I love most about this team is the family atmosphere that we cultivate from the first day we meet these riders. Team Novo Nordisk is unique because we’ve known most of our riders since they were 15. By bringing new riders up to our pro team through our pipeline helps us build upon that supportive environment,” Southerland said. “When Hamish moves up to the pro team, he will rejoin many teammates that he raced with as part of the development team. This supportive relationship makes the transition to the pro peloton easier because they share their wisdom and mistakes, so Hamish’s step up will be that much smoother.”

For Team Novo Nordisk, this showcases the strength and value of the team’s development programs.

“Over the past season, we have seen strong and consistent improvement from Hamish. He has made significant growth since joining our program and he’s ready for this big step up,” Team Novo Nordisk General Manager Vassili Davidenko said. “Hamish has shown strong character and possess a great deal of determination, willingness to learn, and drive to become a better rider and great teammate. He will be guided by our experienced coaches and sports directors to make this transition to the pro level a successful one.”

During the 2019 season, the 21-year-old Beadle earned a list of accolades with Team Novo Nordisk’s development team including winning the Hincapie Spring Series, the Massachusetts State Road Race, the Georgia Games Time Trial and Road Race, the Hapeville Criterium and the Three River Rumble Road Race. Additionally, he’s taken podium finishes at the Oak Ridge Omnium, Haute Route Asheville, Burlington Road Race, and Tennessee State Criterium.

“It has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember to race professionally for Team Novo Nordisk. To pull on a jersey for a team with a mission as special as ours to inspire, educate and empower everyone affected by diabetes is an amazing honour,” Beadle said. “I’m heading to the pro team aiming to be a sponge and learn as much as possible from our veteran riders and experienced staff. I know that now is when the real work begins, and I am focused on keeping a strong, healthy mind while improving physically both in training and recovery. I am looking forward to our first training camp; I think that’s when all this will actually feel real.”

About Team Novo Nordisk
Team Novo Nordisk is a global all-diabetes sports team of cyclists spearheaded by the world’s first all-diabetes UCI Professional Continental cycling team. In 2012, Phil Southerland, co-founder and CEO of the team, and global healthcare company Novo Nordisk, came together to create Team Novo Nordisk, based on a shared vision to inspire, educate and empower people around the world affected by diabetes. For more information, go to

Team Novo Nordisk’s CEO and Co-Founder Phil Southerland, Beadle, General Manager Vassili Davidenko and Development Team General Manager Dan Holt:

Owain Doull Pens Two-Year Extension at Team INEOS
Midway through his first Grand Tour at La Vuelta a Espana, Owain Doull has signed a two-year extension to stay here at Team INEOS.

The Welshman, 26, has enjoyed the strongest road season of his career, riding to his first professional win at the Herald Sun Tour in February, before finishing second at Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne during the Classics.

Those results, along with selection for La Vuelta, represent another year of progression for Doull.

“Progression is probably the key word for me,” said Doull. “I want to carry on learning from the best people in the best team in the world.”

“My first year with the team was up and down, the second was better, and then this year has surpassed my expectations, to be honest. Starting my first Grand Tour is something I have wanted to do since I joined the team.”

Looking ahead, Doull hopes to benefit from his first Grand Tour and keep moving forwards.

“It is a bit of a cliché but I just want to keep progressing and I think that is the best way to go about things,” continued Doull. “2020 will be similar to last year with a big focus on the Classics before switching to that support role in the big stage races. It’s a role that Luke Rowe has performed so well for years and he is someone I massively look up to.”

With La Vuelta in his legs and the confidence gained from his podium finish at Kuurne, Doull will head into 2020 with a spring in his step.

“I’d like to kick on from what I did in the Opening Weekend at the Classics this year and try to transfer that into Flanders and Roubaix, then hopefully get another Grand Tour under my belt,” he said.

“Here at the Vuelta, I’ve spoken to a lot of the riders and staff and everyone says that after your first Grand Tour you can physically move on quite a lot. I understand the Vuelta is a good Grand Tour to do first too, because it sets you up well for your off-season, so hopefully I am starting from a higher level next season and that progression will carry on into the Classics.”

Team INEOS coach Conor Taylor said: “Owain has been a highly consistent performer this year, starting with his first professional win in Australia and carrying that form through the Classics, including his podium finish at Kuurne.

“He has been a key support rider across several stage races, which has resulted in him being selected for his first Grand Tour. Owain is a highly versatile rider, a true teammate on the road, and in time we hope to see him develop into an important road captain for us.

“Looking forward, Owain has a number of personal targets for next season, particularly around the cobbled Classics. We feel he is in the best environment to help him maximise his potential and achieve his ambitions in the sport.”

Owain Doull:

OVO Energy Tour of Britain
Matt Winston – Team Sunweb coach: “We have a nice mix of youth and experience for this year’s Tour of Britain. We will look to target the sprint stages with Cees, with Nils riding in support of him. We have options for the individual TT with Chad on stage six, which takes place on a fast course. We will look to keep our GC interests alive with Chris, where we will need to put a big focus on stages four and seven which look like the big GC days throughout the race.”

Cees Bol (NED), Roy Curvers (NED), Nils Eekhoff (NED), Chad Haga (USA), Chris Hamilton (AUS), Florian Stork (GER).

Lineup: Tour of Britain
The eight-stage OVO Tour of Britain gets underway in Glasgow on Saturday with a tough 201.5km day out finishing in Kirkcudbright.

Our six-man outfit is packed with experience and includes British sprint star Mark Cavendish as well as the race’s 2016 champion Steve Cummings.

Cavendish, who has won a record 10 stages of this race, will be joined by double-stage winner Julien Vermote, who famously held off Cummings while racing for different teams at the finish in Kendal in 2016.

They’re joined by the experienced duo of Bernhard Eisel and Danilo Wyss who both will likely play crucial support functions with the race finishing in Manchester on 14 September.

Our selection is completed by Mark Renshaw, also a double-stage winner at this event, in his final appearance on British soil after confirming earlier this year that 2019 would be his last as a professional.

“September always has me looking forward to The OVO Energy Tour of Britain. Having witnessed first hand the rise of cycling in Great Britain, racing in front of a home crowd holds a special importance to me on a very personal level.

“What makes the 2019 edition especially significant is the finish in Manchester. I remember as an amateur watching the finish there in 2004, the first edition of the race in its current format, and so I’m really looking forward to now racing in what is such an important city for British cycling 15 years on,” Mark Cavendish.

Preview Tour of Britain 2019
On Saturday 7 September, the Tour of Britain will start. The eight-day stage race will start in Scotland and will end in the UK. The race will be even more special this year, because in a few weeks Yorkshire will host the world championships. Like every year, there are both flat and hilly stages full of short, steep hills on the menu. The Tour of Britain will finish two times uphill; one time in Kendal and another time on the Burton Dassett Hills. Sports director Frederik Willems looks ahead.

Frederik Willems: “The Tour of Britain has always been a selective parcours, the roads are almost never flat. The first stages can definitely end in a sprint, but it will depend on which team will control the race. With Jasper De Buyst we have someone with the capacities to compete in a mass sprint.”

“In my opinion stage four and stage seven are the most difficult ones and then of course there is also the individual time trial. In other words, the Tour of Britain has it all, which characterizes this race.”

“A stage win is our main goal, on the one hand with Jasper De Buyst in the sprints, on the other hand with Tiesj Benoot in the hilly stages. Our young guys will also get their chance, but they’ll have to show the right mentality. With teams of only six riders here in England, it’s always a surprise how it will turn out. Besides the goal to win a stage, we will also try to do well in the overall classification with Tiesj.”

“In any case, Tiesj and Jasper are our protected riders. That’s the attitude our other four riders have to start with, but that does not mean that they can’t have a go themselves, for example by joining a breakaway. We want to race attentively from day one, so that we’re not being forced into the defensive.”

“Mathieu van der Poel is definitely someone to keep an eye on. Most teams will already think about the Worlds, so everyone who wants to be good in Yorkshire, will show themselves in Britain. Tiesj Benoot has a good chance to be selected for the World Championships, especially with the form he is in the last few weeks. Just think about his stage win in Denmark and his second place in the Bretagne Classic.”

Line-up Lotto Soudal:
Tiesj Benoot, Jasper De Buyst, Frederik Frison, Rasmus Byriel Iversen, Rémy Mertz and Brent Van Moer.
Sports director: Frederik Willems.

Tiesj Benoot and Jasper De Buyst:

Euskadi-Murias to Stop
Euskadi-Murias is in its second consecutive season at UCI ProContinental level, but it is uncertain whether the team will be active in the peloton next year. Spanish sports-paper AS writes that the team is still looking for ways to continue.

The sports newspaper writes that the financial situation of the team is slightly better than a month ago. Nevertheless, riders of Euskadi-Murias have the freedom to speak with other teams because continuity cannot yet be guaranteed. Negotiations are still ongoing. There has been a merger with Fundacion Euskadi in the past, but this is no longer be possible.

Óscar Rodríguez gave the team the greatest ever success last season when he won a Vuelta a España stage finishing in La Camperona. The team is in the Tour of Spain again this year and won Wednesday’s stage 11, which help. This season Enrique Sanz has been the team’s winner with five wins. Mikel Aristi has had two successes and Héctor Sáez with one victory.

Óscar Rodríguez winning Vuelta’18 stage 13:

Bernal Closes His Season in Lombardy
Egan Bernal has added a series of Italian races to his program. La Gazzetta dello Sport reports. The Tour de France winner will finish his 2019 season in the Giro di Lombardia.

Bernal – who last raced in the Clásica San Sebastián – is currently preparing for autumn in Colombia for the ‘race of the falling leaves’ the Colombian will start in the Giro dell’Emilia (5/10), GP Beghelli (6/10), Tre Valli Varesine (8/10) and Milan-Turin (9/10 ). His end of year program is largely the same as last year, when he was 10th in Milan-Turin and 12th in Lombardy.

It has also been announced that Bernal will be part of the Colombian World championships this year. However, the Italian sports-paper reports that Bernal would normally miss the World champs road race. The final World championships selection will be announced after the Vuelta.

Egan Bernal – 2019 Tour de France winner:

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