There is only one story – the untimely death of Bjorg Lambrecht while racing in the Tour of Pologne on Monday. There are no words to describe the loss of anyone, let alone a young lad of only 22. We also have the race news from Poland and the European championships. Lance Armstrong to attend Gran Fondo Hincapie-Greenville, no Vuelta for Dumoulin, Sunweb for BinckBank Tour, teams for OVO Energy Tour of Britain, Women’s Tour of Scotland, TV coverage for the Tour of Utah, lots of transfer and contract news, Donnelly-Aevolo cyclocross team and MCPP figures of credibility.
TOP STORY: Bjorg Lambrecht dies after a crash in the Tour of Poland
Bjorg Lambrecht died as a result of a fall in the Tour of Poland. His team Lotto Soudal reported on Monday evening.
The first reports from the race showed that Lambrecht’s situation was serious. In the 150.5 kilometre stage 3 from Chorzów to Zabrze, he was involved in a serious crash with 48 kilometres to go. He landed in a canal and hit a concrete pipe. “The accident happened on a straight, broad road. The speed was not very high. How Lambrecht came off the road is unclear. He collapsed and had suffered serious internal injuries,” explained organiser Czesław Lang.
Lambrecht was resuscitated and transferred to the hospital by ambulance. “His condition was so severe that it was impossible to take him to the hospital by helicopter, so he was transported by ambulance,” the race doctor said. In the Rybnik hospital, the doctors fought for his life, but they failed to save him.
Bjog Lambrecht was one of the major revelations of last Spring with a fifth place in Brabantse Pijl and a sixth in the Amstel Gold Race. In the Waalse Pijl he then took fourh. He also won the youth classification in the Critérium du Dauphiné. And last year he was second in the road race at the U23 World Championships. After his strong showing in the spring classics, he extended his contract with Lotto Soudal for two more years, until the end of 2021. He wanted to develop further in the coming years in the one-day races and the stage races. In the Tour of Poland he was allowed to ride for his own chances and he would have been on the start list for the Vuelta a España, for the second time.
“Rest in peace, Bjorg Lambrecht…
The biggest tragedy possible that could happen to the family, friends and teammates of Bjorg has become reality today… Lotto Soudal is deeply saddened to inform that 22-year-old rider Bjorg Lambrecht passed away following a crash in the Tour de Pologne today. The entire Lotto Soudal team would like to express its deepest condolences to the family, friends, teammates and all the loved ones of Bjorg. May you rest in peace, Bjorg…”
Tour de Pologne – UCI World Tour
We are very sad for the passing of Bjorg Lambrecht, a young Belgian rider from team Lotto – Soudal. The cyclist veered off the road during the 48th kilometre of stage III of the Tour de Pologne and sustained severe injuries as a consequence of a fall.
Emergency services provided immediate reanimation and transport to the hospital where, despite the best efforts of the surgical team, the sustained injuries proved to be too serious.
“We are all incredibly shaken by this tragedy. Words fail to describe the emotions that we’re all feeling. I share the pain with Bjorg’s family, his team and all members of the cycling community. At the same time I reiterate our full support. Bjorg Lambrecht will forever remain in our memories as an exceptional cyclist and a great man” – Czeslaw Lang, Race Director.
The race organisers, the jury and the teams have made a decision to neutralise the 4th stage of the Tour de Pologne to pay our respects to Bjorg. The stage route has been reduced to 133.7 km and the final laps have been cut to 1. Any further decisions regarding tomorrow’s stage will be communicated in agreement with Lotto – Soudal.
All the associated events, including the Kinder+Sport Mini Tour de Pologne that had been planned for the day will be cancelled in commemoration.
UCI expressed condolences
“Loss of Bjorg Lambrecht at the Tour de Pologne
It is with great sadness that the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) learned that the promising young Belgian rider Bjorg Lambrecht has passed away. Aged 22, the neo-professional with the Lotto Soudal team lost consciousness after an accidental crash during the 3rd stage of the Tour de Pologne. He was taken by ambulance to hospital in Rybnik, where he unfortunately died. Very shocked, the UCI extends its sincere sympathy to Bjorg Lambrecht’s family, friends and team.”
Many Riders took to Twitter to express their feelings:
Profundamente apenado por la pérdida de Bjorg Lambrecht, un ciclista que había demostrado mucho en muy pocos años. Mi más sentido pésame a familiares, amigos y equipo @Lotto_Soudal. DEP.
(Deeply sorry for the loss of Bjorg Lambrecht, a cyclist who had demonstrated a lot in a few years. My deepest condolences to family, friends and team @Lotto_Soudal. RIP.)
Wat een rot dag, Bjorg zo een lieve jonge.. veel sterkte aan de familie en aan iedereen van @Lotto_Soudal veel te vroeg heen gegaan😢
(What a rotten day, Bjorg such a sweet young one .. a lot of strength to the family and everyone from @Lotto_Soudal went way too early)
Dylan van Baarle
😢😢😢.. this is unreal…
Pff young hard working talent and most of all super good guy. I will miss you Matchbox!! Rest in peace my friend
What a tragedy! My deepest condolences to the family, friends and teammates.
RIP matchbox…can’t believe it how tragical our sport can be…all my thoughts to Björg’s family…
No no no no… I can’t believe this. 😥 One of the nicest kids in the bunch with such a bright future ahead of him…. Thoughts to his family, teammates, friends… Such a sad sad day. Rest in peace buddy.
Horrible news in cycling. So so sorry to his family and friends. Incomprehensible. Such a bright light starting his journey.
Just so incredibly sad. Such a young talent doing something he loved. This sport can be so cruel at time. RIP Bjorg thoughts with all your friends and family
BORA – hansgrohe
‘Today, the result of the race doesn’t matter. I was devastated to hear today’s tragic news and I would like to personally send my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Bjorg Lambrecht and everyone at Lotto – Soudal.’ – Pascal Ackermann
Astana Pro Team
It is an enormous tragedy and it is hard to find words to express our sorrow. Bjorg Lambrecht was so young and so talented… This is a huge impact on all world of cycling. We express our deepest condolences to the family and @Lotto_Soudal team…
Estaba pre inscrito para disputar #LaVuelta19. Era el futuro del ciclismo y dejará un vacío difícil de llenar en el pelotón. Nuestro más sentido pésame a su familia. DEP
(He was on the start list of #LaVuelta19. He was the future of cycling and he will never be forget. RIP)
Two days after the crash and the passing of Bjorg Lambrecht, team doctor Maarten Meirhaeghe can provide more information.
“Bjorg died from a big liver laceration which caused a massive internal haemorrhage. As a consequence, Bjorg suffered a cardiac arrest. Bjorg had the biggest stroke of bad luck that was possible by the way he crashed. With such internal haemorrhages, a miracle is needed, a miracle which he wasn’t given… The place and the time did not influence the consequences. Even if such trauma would have happened inside a hospital, chances of a bad outcome are real.”
Out of respect for the family and friends of Bjorg, we would like to ask – also in the future – to carefully deal with non-official information and details. We will refrain from answering speculations and misstatements that were published. There will not be communicated about the repatriation. We will communicate about the funeral as soon as the date is known.
# Deepest condolences to the Lambrecht family, friends an his teammates from everyone at PEZ. #
Bjorg Lambrecht – 1997 to 2019 RIP
Tour de Pologne 2019
Stage 3 of the 76th Tour de Pologne was overshadowed by the tragic accident and passing of Bjorg Lambrecht of Lotto-Soudal.
The race started with a three-man breakaway, which had a maximum gap of more than three minutes, while Bora-Hansgrohe controlled the main field. With 50 km to go, the young Lotto-Soudal rider crashed and was taken to the hospital, where he later passed away. While nobody in the race was informed about this tragic news, the race continued. The breakaway was caught on the final lap with 5 km to go. Bora-Hansgrohe formed their lead-out for their sprinter and leader of the Tour de Pologne, Pascal Ackermann.
In a hectic bunch sprint Pascal Ackermann crossed the line in second place, but after the disqualification of Fabio Jakobsen, Ackermann was announced as the winner of the stage. A result that doesn’t matter on a day where a young cyclist lost his life way too early.
Stage winner and overall leader, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe): “Today, the result of the race doesn’t matter. I was devastated to hear today’s tragic news and I would like to personally send my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Bjorg Lambrecht and everyone at Lotto – Soudal.”
Tour de Pologne Stage 3 Result:
1. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe in 3:29:41
2. Danny van Poppel (Ned) Jumbo-Visma
3. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo
4. John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo
5. Maximilian Walscheid (Ger) Sunweb
6. Mark Cavendish (GB) Dimension Data
7. Marc Sarreau (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
8. Andrea Peron (Ita) Team Novo Nordisk
9. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates
10. Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain-Merida.
Tour de Pologne Overall After Stage 3:
1. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe in 9:59:57
2. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates at 0:12
3. Luka Mezgec (Slo) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:14
4. Paweł Franczak (Pol) Poland at 0:16
5. Jakub Kaczmarek (Pol) Poland at 0:17
6. Danny van Poppel (Ned) Jumbo-Visma at 0:18
7. Fabio Jakobsen (Ned) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:20
8. Ben Swift (GB) Ineos at 0:22
9. Quentin Jauregui (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
10. Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain-Merida at 0:23.
There was shock at the end of stage 3:
Stage 4 Today the Tour de Pologne – UCI World Tour was shrouded in a surreal atmosphere. There are no words to describe the emotions expressed. There was grieving and there were condolences for what happened yesterday, and all the riders showed the utmost respect to the memory of Bjorg Lambrecht and the pain and loss of his team Lotto – Soudal.
The race organisers, the jury and the teams all agreed that today’s fraction, the 4th stage from Jaworzno to Slaskie, Kocierz, would be neutralised for the entire distance, and there was one less final lap. The total new distance for today’s stage was 133,7 km and the peloton rode at the controlled speed of 30/35 km/h. All the intermediate sprints, points and bonuses were cancelled.
At the start the riders went to the podium to sign in, but there weren’t any team presentations. Everyone observed a minute of silence before the start, with the riders from Lotto-Soudal in the front row alongside the distinguished jerseys.
At km 48, in remembrance of Bjorg Lambrecht’s fatal accident, the entire group stopped to observe a minute of silence with the riders from team Lotto – Soudal in the first row.
Each team rode in front of the peloton for approximately 7 kms. Lotto-Soudal rode the last kilometres in the front. At the finish line another minute of silence was observed and then the peloton crossed the finish line to the applause of the attending public.
It was touching to see how the public behaved along the route as they followed the race, in a somber mood that shared in the sadness of the event. There were also lots of banners made by fans to commemorate Bjorg Lambrecht and his race number, 143.
“The organisation would like to thank all the members of the greater cycling family who have shared in the grief of team Lotto – Soudal and the Tour de Pologne – UCI World Tour. Their support and condolences in such a difficult time of mourning have demonstrated a moving sense of unity and compassion. We thank the UCI, the UEC, the AIOCC, the CPA, the teams and all the other associations, as well as everyone who has been coming to show their support. We also thank the sponsors, our partners and the departure and arrival host cities, as well as all the places touched by today’s route, who honoured the memory of Bjorg Lambrecht” – Czeslaw Lang, Race Director.
Kids on the route hold up No.143 – Bjorg Lambrecht’s race number in the Tour de Pologne
Tour de Pologne Overall After Stage 4:
1. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe in 9:59:57
2. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates at 0:12
3. Luka Mezgec (Slo) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:14
4. Paweł Franczak (Pol) Poland at 0:16
5. Jakub Kaczmarek (Pol) Poland at 0:17
6. Danny van Poppel (Ned) Jumbo-Visma at 0:18
7. Fabio Jakobsen (Ned) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:20
8. Ben Swift (GB) Ineos at 0:22
9. Quentin Jauregui (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
10. Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain-Merida at 0:23.
Lotto Soudal head the peloton on stage 4:
After Tuesday’s mourning, with the peloton and the entire Tour de Pologne family paying their respects to Bjorg Lambrecht, on Wednesday the race picked up again, with Stage 5 from “Kopalnia Soli” Wieliczka to Bielsko-Biala for 154 km.
On the long, slightly uphill finish straight in Bielsko-Biala, Luka Mezgec (Mitchelton-Scott) put in a powerful sprint to win. The Slovenian bested Spain’s Eduard Prades (Movistar) and British Champion Ben Swift (Ineos). This is his second victory in Poland after his win in Katowice on Sunday.
In a finish that wasn’t particularly friendly to the pure sprinters, Germany’s Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) managed to hang on to the Carrefour yellow jersey as leader of the general classification, where he is now ahead by 4 seconds on Mezgec and 16 seconds on Swift. Ackermann is also still wearing the Lotos white jersey as best sprinter.
With the sixth place he took on today’s finish line, Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe) has shown to be in top form, ready to vie for the general classification in the second part of the Tour de Pologne, which starts tomorrow with the first mountain stage, Zakopane – Koscielisko for 160 km.
Team Lotto-Soudal were at the start line with all six of Bjorg Lambrecht’s team mates. The race started to heat up with a breakaway group of four riders that took off shortly after the start. The ever present Frenchman, Charles Planet (Team Novo Nordisk) has up until now been in all of the breaks at the Tour de Pologne, which have earned him the Tauron magenta jersey as the best climber and the Lotto blue jersey for the most active rider in the group. He was accompanied by Poland’s own Kamil Gradek (CCC) and Szymon Rekita (Polish National Team), along with Belgium’s Jelle Wallays (Lotto Soudal). They managed to reach a maximum advantage of about 3:30, but were caught by the pack with about 34 km to go to the finish, on the final climb of the day.
This is where Colombian Rodrigo Contreras (Astana) and Norwegian Frederik Hagen (Lotto Soudal), tried an immediate counter-attack, coming off the gpm first and second; then Italian Champion Davide Formolo (Bora-Hansgrohe) caught them, but on the descent the group closed the gap and didn’t allow for any more leeway.
Afterwards, with about 25 km to go to the finish, Slovenia’s Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida) attempted a solitary escape, with Ethiopian Tsgabu Grmay (Mitchelton-Scott) and German Simon Geschke (CCC) catching him shortly after. It looked like a good try, with the three riders passing the finish line in Bielsko-Biala for the first of three laps (7.2 km each) with a twenty-odd second lead on the pack, which was being spurred on by the men of Bora-Hansgrohe. Eventually this trio was also caught at the beginning of the last lap. It all ended in a jostling sprint, where Luka Mezgec managed to prevail over Prades and Swift.
In the other classifications, Charles Planet (Team Novo Nordisk) deservedly confirms his Lotto blue jersey as the most active rider in the group. While the Tauron magenta jersey for best climber passes on to the shoulders of Colombian Rodrigo Contreras (Astana). Szymon Rekita (Polish National Team) leads the Lotos classification as the best Polish rider. Team Bora-Hansgrohe continues their lead in the team classification.
The race must go on, but the Tour de Pologne will never forget. Again today along the entire route there was a spirit of sadness and mourning for the tragedy that occurred on Monday, with many displays of affection from the public to remember and commemorate Lambrecht, including many signs and banners reading #ForBjorg and the number 143 everywhere.
Stage winner, Luka Mezgec (Mitchelton-Scott): “Katowice, the fastest street on downhill, winning today in Bielsko-Biala in an uphill sprint. The first sprint downhill, I cannot say I was the strongest; I was the guy with the most luck, and also with good speed and a good nose for opening the gap. But this time was different. Actually, before the race I marked this stage as the best chance for me to win here and I did a great job positioning myself; also, my team did a great job in the last lap to keep me there in the front and in the end, everything worked out perfectly. I was behind Swift. Team Ineos did a great job in the last k and it was my job to just follow and try to do my best in the last kilometres. But today was not an easy day for all the peloton. Of course, we’ve only been grieving for two days. We will never forget him and today during the whole stage I had in mind how dangerous our sport is and how fragile we are, actually, because we take a lot of risks, sometimes we forget about it, we don’t think about it, but there is risk and it is tragic.”
Overall leader, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe): “In spite of the grief of today, it’s still a good feeling to be in yellow. It’s still a World Tour Race and to be leader for 5 days is amazing for a sprinter. Today was a really hard stage and we saw that not that many sprinters arrived. It was just too much for me at the end of the day and Luka was a good winner today. Of course, the race is going on, but these last two days have been very difficult for the riders. Everyone is really sad and shocked about what happened and you can still feel it in the peloton. But we have to look forward to the next days and hope that everything will be fine.”
6th on the stage, Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe): “As hard at it is, today we had to go back to racing. But we will never forget what has happened. I came here to prepare also for La Vuelta and I am in good shape. I have recovered well after the Giro and my legs get better day by day. Today, our main goal was to go for Pascal, to defend the yellow jersey, but also keep an eye on the GC contenders. I was a little bit boxed in, in the finale, but still I managed to finished in 6th place, and there is nothing to complain about. Tomorrow, the mountains are coming up and I am looking forward to it because it is fun to ride on home soil.”
KOM, Rodrigo Contreras (Astana): “I was happy to take the mountain jersey today, it was nice to do this stage like this. But for the next days we have two leaders, Ion Izaguirre and Miguel Angel Lopez. I will try to do my best to help them, and of course I’d like to fight for this gpm jersey in the last stages.”
Tour de Pologne Stage 5 Result:
1. Luka Mezgec (Slo) Mitchelton-Scott in 3:49:55
2. Eduard Prades (Spa) Movistar
3. Ben Swift (GB) Ineos
4. Petr Vakoc (Cze) Deceuninck – Quick-Step
5. Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
6. Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
7. Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Katusha-Alpecin
8. Marc Sarreau (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
9. Chris Hamilton (Aus) Sunweb
10. Michael Gogl (Aut) Trek-Segafredo.
Tour de Pologne Overall After Stage 5:
1. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe in 18:06:30
2. Luka Mezgec (Slo) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:04
3. Ben Swift (GB) Ineos at 0:16
4. Eduard Prades (Spa) Movistar at 0:18
5. Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain-Merida at 0:20
6. Quentin Jauregui (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale at 0:22
7. Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale at 0:23
8. Marc Sarreau (Fra) Groupama-FDJ at 0:24
9. Clement Venturini (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
10. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates.
First European Titles Awarded in Alkmaar
The Junior and Mixed Relay Men’s and Women’s Time-Trial opened on Wednesday in Alkmaar (Netherlands) at the 2019 edition of the Road European Championships that will finish with the Men’s Elite race on Sunday 11 August.
On the opening day, the host country, the Netherlands, won two gold medals, one silver and one bronze.
The organising country won the first title on offer in the Women Juniors, with the success of Shirin Van Anrooij who raced the 22 kilometres of the circuit (the same in all categories) in 30:18 ahead of the Russian Aigul Gareeva who finished in 30:20 and the Swede Wilma Olausson third in 30:42.
Italian success in the Men’s with Andrea Piccolo who triumphed in a time of 26:52 averaging 50 kilometres per hour in front of the Dutch rider Lars Boven (27:04) and Enzo Leijnse third at 27:06.
The first Mixed Relay continental title, the mixed team time-trial with three Men and three Women per national team, was also awarded.
In this race, the Netherlands team came in first place with Koen Bowman, Bauke Mollema, Ramon Sinkeldam, Floortje Mackaij, Riejanne Markus and Amy Pieters, winning a historic gold medal. The team covered the two laps of the circuit in 52:49 (one for the Men’s trio and one for the Women’s), in front of Germany by 15 seconds (Marco Mathis, Jasha Sutterlin, Justin Wolf, Lisa Brennauer, Lisa Klein and Mieke Kroegernd) and Italy by 1:25 (Edoardo Affini, Manuele Boaro, Davide Martinelli, Vittoria Guazzini, Elisa Longoborghini and Silvia Valsecchi).
The European Championships will resume on Thursday with the time-trial races for the Under 23 and Men’s and Women’s Elite categories.
The Netherlands – 2019 UEC Road Champions Relay men/women ITT:
Lance Armstrong Confirmed to Attend Gran Fondo Hincapie-Greenville
Armstrong plans to attend Friday’s Celebrity Chef Dinner and participate in the ride on Saturday.
Hincapie Sportswear received confirmation on Monday that cyclist Lance Armstrong will ride in Gran Fondo Hincapie-Greenville. Armstrong, a former teammate of George Hincapie’s, partner at NEXT VENTŪRES, founder of WEDŪ, and host of “THEMOVE” and “The Forward” podcasts, will join George Hincapie for the ride on October 19, 2019.
“I’m excited to come back to Greenville,” says Armstrong. “This will be my third Gran Fondo Hincapie this year, and Greenville is always the biggest event.”
“We’re thrilled to have Lance with us for another fondo,” says George Hincapie. “The friendship between Lance and me dates back to the early days when we raced together, so it’s fun to ride the Greenville routes with him, as they were the same that I trained on for the Tour de France.”
Armstrong joined Hincapie for the Gran Fondo Hincapie rides in Fort Worth and Boise this year. This will be his third time attending the Greenville fondo.
Gran Fondo Hincapie hosts events in Chattanooga, Fort Worth, Boise, and Greenville, SC. The Greenville ride, now in its seventh year, has topped charts and received stellar reviews, acclaimed for the cycling celebrities in attendance, as well as the careful attention to safety, on – site viewing screens, course and segment timing, live tracking and streaming, live bands at the rest stops, and free family festival.
For more information about the Gran Fondo Hincapie series, visit hincapie.com/granfondo.
Hincapie Events offers races and rides for cyclists of all ages and skill levels. From the season-opening Hincapie Spring Series to the ultimate cycling experience of the Gran Fondo Hincapie, the events create a community of cyclists and celebrate the sport of cycling. For more information about Hincapie Events, visit hincapie.com.
Hincapie and Armstrong:
No Vuelta for Dumoulin
Tom Dumoulin will not be starting the Vuelta a España in three weeks time. The Dutchman is still not sufficiently recovered from knee problems, which also prevented participation in the Tour de France.
Dumoulin suffered knee problems after a fall in the fourth stage of the Giro d’Italia. A day later he got on the bike again, but he had to stop fighting. He then tried to get ready for the Tour de France via the Critérium du Dauphiné, but the pain in his knee continued and he decided not to participate in the French Tour.
During the Tour it became known that further investigation had revealed that a tendon in the left knee was torn, so Dumoulin had to leave his bike for some time. Now it appears that the Vuelta a España is too early, wrote AD. His knee can still not take too much pressure due to tendon inflammation and cartilage injury.
“The focus is currently on full recovery and the Vuelta comes too early,” said a spokesman for his Sunweb team.
Dumoulin out of the Giro and most of 2019:
Sunweb for the BinckBank Tour – AUG 12-18
Michiel Elijzen – Team Sunweb coach: “We expect that the race will again be one which is decided by just seconds so we will focus on taking those seconds in the intermediate sprints, the short but heavy stage in the Ardennes, the TT and the last stage of the race. We head to the BinckBank Tour with a motivated team. In Søren we have a rider who can go for a strong result in the GC but we also have Marc who showed that he is in good shape at San Sebastian with a great third place and he should also go far into the race. We will look at each stage day-by-day to make the best plan and we will fight for every second on the road.”
Søren Kragh Andersen (DEN), Jan Bakelants (BEL), Roy Curvers (NED), Marc Hirschi (SWI), Joris Nieuwenhuis (NED), Casper Pedersen (DEN), Martijn Tusveld (NED).
Marc Hirschi 2nd in San Sebastián:
World’s Leading Teams Return to the OVO Energy Tour of Britain
Team INEOS, Team Jumbo – Visma and Team Sunweb headline the 20 teams confirmed for this September’s OVO Energy Tour of Britain, the UK’s biggest and most prestigious cycle race.
Eleven teams fresh from competing in the Tour de France will take part in the 16th edition of the modern Tour (Saturday 7 – 14 September), including the French AG2R La Mondiale squad of Romain Bardet, who make their first appearance since 2009.
In total the OVO Energy Tour of Britain will welcome 10 UCI World Tour teams in 2019 including Team Dimension Data of Mark Cavendish, EF Education First Pro Cycling, Lotto Soudal, Mitchelton – SCOTT, Team KATUSHA ALPECIN and the Movistar Team who won the team classification at the Tour de France last month.
Five UCI ProContinental squads will compete, led by Corendon – Circus Cycling Team, who are already confirmed as bringing rising star Mathieu van der Poel to the race, while the Israel Cycling Academy team will make their debut with a potential line-up including the last back-to-back stage winner in the Tour of Britain Matthias Brändle and former Irish national champion Connor Dunne.
Joining them will be Belgian squads Wanty – Gobert Cycling Team and Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise, who have both previously enjoyed riders winning jerseys in the OVO Energy Tour of Britain, and the Danish Riwal Readynez Cycling Team who impressed on British roads this spring with a stage win in the Tour de Yorkshire for Alexander Kamp.
British fans will also be able to cheer on the Great Britain cycling team once again, with the line again expected to feature the best British professionals from outside of the teams competing, combined with the next generation of home stars, such as Ethan Hayter who took four top 10 stage finishes during the 2018 race for Great Britain.
Four British UCI Continental squads will complete the field, having earned their places through a season long qualification criteria. OVO Energy Tour Series champions Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes will be joined by Madison Genesis, Team WIGGINS Le Col and making their race debut SwiftCarbon Pro Cycling.
Further announcements about the provisional rider list for the OVO Energy Tour of Britain will be made throughout August.
OVO Energy Tour of Britain Race Director Mick Bennett said: “Once again we’re delighted to welcome such a strong line-up of teams to the OVO Energy Tour of Britain. From fan favourites such as Team INEOS, Mitchelton-SCOTT and Team Jumbo Visma, alongside notable returnees AG2R La Mondiale, to the four British domestic teams who gained selection following a season-long qualification process, I think we’re in for an exciting eight days of racing in September.”
Commenting on the announcement, Julie Harrington, Chief Executive of British Cycling added: “There aren’t many road races outside a Grand Tour that attract such a staggering field of riders year after year, but the 2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain is one of them. With the hunt for the maillot jaune now wrapped up, what better way to whet the appetite for fans of our great sport than to say that those very same WorldTour and Pro Continental teams will be going wheel to wheel much closer to home, come September.
“We are now a short time away from watching the likes of Team INEOS, Mitchelton – SCOTT and Team Dimension Data doing battle on our doorstep, and with the race for British domestic team qualification at its end – well done to Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes, Madison Genesis, SwiftCarbon Pro Cycling and Team WIGGINS Le Col – we are soon to see just why the OVO Energy Tour of Britain is the pinnacle of British Cycling’s road racing calendar.”
The OVO Energy Tour of Britain gets underway from George Square in Glasgow on Saturday 7 September, finishing on Deansgate in Manchester city centre on Saturday 14 September.
ITV4 will once again screen live free-to-air coverage flag-to-flag of each stage in the UK, along with a nightly highlights programme of the best of the action.
The OVO Energy Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their doorstep and helping to build a great cycling nation.
OVO Energy Tour of Britain 2019 competing teams:
AG2R La Mondiale (France)
Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes (Great Britain)
Corendon – Circus Cycling Team (Belgium)
EF Education First Pro Cycling (USA)
Great Britain Cycling Team (Great Britain)
Israel Cycling Academy (Israel)
Lotto Soudal (Belgium)
Madison Genesis (Great Britain)
Mitchelton – SCOTT (Australia)
Movistar Team (Spain)
Riwal Readynez Cycling Team (Denmark)
Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise (Belgium)
SwiftCarbon Pro Cycling (Great Britain)
Team Dimension Data (South Africa)
Team INEOS (Great Britain)
Team Jumbo – Visma Cycling (Netherlands)
Team KATUSHA ALPECIN (Switzerland)
Team Sunweb (Germany)
Team WIGGINS Le Col (Great Britain)
Wanty – Gobert Cycling Team (Belgium).
Christmas Come Early for Women’s Tour of Scotland
Christmas, a converted track athlete, can’t wait for the first edition of the event. Check out the Lotto Soudal Ladies rider’s pre-race thoughts and our latest video as our partners Deloitte ride a lap of Holyrood Park with Eileen Roe to preview the big moments of the race.
If you’re looking for proof that it’s never too late to succeed in cycling, Dani Christmas is your answer. The former international 800m runner began her professional cycling career just 18 months ago, yet will be one to watch this weekend when she leads Belgium’s Lotto Soudal Ladies into the Women’s Tour of Scotland.
The three-day, three stage race starts in Dundee on 9 August and will stretch across five cities before concluding in Edinburgh on August 12. The Tour, the first of its kind to be instituted before a men’s equivalent, is set to become a permanent fixture in the UCI professional calendar and Christmas believes its introduction is exactly what is needed to take women’s cycling to the next level in Britain.
“I first heard about the race at the beginning of the year and the more I have thought about it since, the more I realise how important it is for women’s cycling in Britain,” said Christmas.
“We’re really lucky to have two huge World Tour races, but there are a lot of British riders who don’t get the opportunity to race them, so having a UCI race will help bridge that gap.
“It is fantastic to know the race can be watched by friends, family and the wider public – it’s going to provide such a platform to help women’s cycling. This race has the potential to be the highlight of the cycling calendar not only for the British riders, but for the international riders as well.”
Christmas, who initially thought her sporting career would be as a middle-distance runner, opted to change to life in the saddle in 2013 after a sustained period of injury forced her off the running track.
Her route into cycling may have been unplanned however the 31-year-old has not once looked back. Since turning professional in 2018, Christmas has raced with Bizkaia Durango in Spain and represented Great Britain at the 2018 European Championships before moving to Belgium at the turn of the year to compete in Lotto Soudal colours. Now, on her return to racing on home soil, Christmas is out to use her newfound platform to prove that cycling really is a sport for all.
“Being a British rider in an international team, it’s nice to be able to come back to Britain and race – somehow I’ve never competed with Lotto Soudal in the UK,” added Christmas. “I have really fond memories of racing at the European Championships in Scotland last year. There’s nothing better than a home crowd cheering you on.
“I did spend a year in the UK but I moved over to Belgium to gain more racing experience because there were more opportunities on the continent at the time, but I think events like the Women’s Tour of Scotland will prove how far cycling in Britain has come, and how far it can go from here.
“I’m claiming this as a home race – despite living in the south of Britain! I want to show what I can do on home roads but also, I want to make it an entertaining race to help inspire other women and young girls to get into the sport.”
Check out when and where to watch the Tour and how you can get involved in our activities here.
With an anticipated 100,000 spectators, the Tour will attract visitors, fans and cycling enthusiasts from across the UK, Europe and worldwide:
THREE days until #WTOS!
We are delighted to be supporting this landmark event for Scotland 🏴
— Deloitte in Scotland (@DeloitteUK_Scot) August 6, 2019
Worldwide Broadcast Coverage of Tour of Utah Includes 21 Hours in United States on FOX Sports Networks
Live Start-to-Finish Webcast Coverage Available All Seven Days
FOX Sports Networks, which includes FS2 and FSN regional channels, will provide a total of 21 hours of programming across the United States as the broadcast partner for the 2019 Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah on Aug. 12-18. Live start-to-finish webcast coverage will be provided free of charge with Tour Tracker® powered by Adobe®, available from the Tour of Utah website. All coverage on FS2, FSN and Tour Tracker will be available in high definition.
International broadcast coverage will be provided on networks and fee-based services across five continents, including Eurosport in Europe, L’Equipe in France, and ESPN in select countries in South America. The Tour of Utah will reach more than 400 million homes around the world.
The national FS2 broadcast schedule will feature live race coverage from 6-8 p.m. MT for the Salt Lake City circuit on Friday, Aug. 16, which is Stage Four presented by America First Credit Union. The other six days of racing will be shown via tape-delayed programming in the 5-7 p.m. MT time slot. The broadcast team will feature Tour of Utah veterans Steve Brown, Todd Gogulski, Chad Andrews and Kristen Kenney.
KJZZ-TV, which serves households across Utah and parts of five other states, will broadcast a 30-minute Preview Show on Aug. 11 at 8 p.m. MT. A nightly one-hour recap show will air race week on KJZZ-TV in Utah and regionally on FSN/AT&T SportsNet (check local listings).
The Zone Sports Network will provide hourly updates on the Tour of Utah during race weekdays on Aug. 12-16. Tony Parks will anchor the radio coverage heard on The Zone (1280 AM, 97.5 FM).
Tour Tracker® powered by Adobe® returns for a ninth year for live coverage for all seven days of racing. This award-winning global web and mobile platform provides enhanced coverage with GPS race tracking and analysis for every stage. The apps are free to download for iPhone, iPad and Android mobile devices. The Tour of Utah Tour Tracker® announcers will be Frankie Andreu, former professional cyclist and Tour de France veteran, and Brad Sohner, professional sports announcer. Links to the web and mobile apps are available at www.tourofutah.com/race/tourtracker.
The Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah is free to all spectators, making professional cycling one of the most unique sports in the world today. The Tour of Utah is a 2.HC-rated stage race on the UCI America Tour and one of the prominent road cycling events that is part of USA Cycling’s Pro Road Tour. More information about the Tour of Utah can be found by visiting www.tourofutah.com, as well as social channels Facebook (tourofutah), Twitter (tourofutah), Instagram (thetourofutah) and YouTube (tourofutah).
Mikel Landa to join Bahrain-Merida Pro Cycling Team
Bahrain-Merida Pro Cycling Team is proud to announce that Mikel Landa, one of the world’s top professional riders, will be wearing the team’s jersey from 2020. The Basque climber, a proven force in the mountains, will be a major contributor to our stage race objectives.
Landa, 29, turned professional in 2011 and since then has built an impressive Palmarès. In 2015 he achieved his first Grand Tour successes – winning a stage of the Vuelta a Espana and two stages of the Giro d’Italia, where he also finished 3rd overall. This year he was 4th overall at the Giro d’Italia and 6th in the Tour de France, where he also took the Combativity Award on Stage 15.
The Spanish rider, who still lives in his hometown, Murgia, is very proud of his Basque roots. His first professional team was the local Euskaltel-Euskadi and he has remained close to the Fundación Euskadi ever since. In 2018 he became the president of the local Euskadi Cycling Foundation, demonstrating his loyalty to the organisation that helped him become the cyclist he is today.
General Manager of the team Brent Copeland said: “It is with immense pleasure that we welcome Mikel to our team, he is a rider who brings excitement to racing with his incredible climbing skills which makes him one of the most competitive riders for the grand tours, his consistent results speak for themselves and his exceptional experience is something that we at Team Bahrain Merida know we can count on. With the arrival of McLaren to our team, we believe that Mikel will have even more benefits to take advantage of and this makes everyone at the team very enthusiastic, we are sure the fans are just as excited as we are about his arrival as we all looking forward to cheering Mikel on”.
Mikel Landa commented after signing a contract: “I feel very proud of Team Bahrain Merida who has chosen me to lead this project. I feel really excited for coming challenges.”
Mikel is confident in his form and eager to compete in Bahrain-Merida colours. We greatly respect his achievements to date and look forward to him contributing to the ongoing development and improvement of our team. We wish him a warm welcome and many further successes in our jersey.
Another new team for Mikel Landa:
One More Year for Rodrigo Contreras with Astana Pro Team
The Kazakh Astana Pro Team has signed a new one-year agreement with the 25-year-old Colombian rider Rodrigo Contreras.
“I am super happy with this big family named Astana Pro Team. I’ve got a great welcome immediately from the beginning and I am so glad to continue racing in Astana colours. I hope to continue giving my all for the team to help Astana in reaching the biggest goals. I really like this team: I like the group of riders we have here as well as all the management and the staff. I feel here like at home,” said Rodrigo Contreras.
Rodrigo Contreras has joined Astana Pro Team this season and already showed a good potential both as an attacking rider and strong helper for his teammates. In the beginning of the year Contreras finished twice in the Top-10 of the general classification at the Colombia 2.1 and Tour du Rwanda, where he won a very nice stage. At the Volta a Catalunya he was in service of Miguel Angel Lopez on his way to the overall win. These days, Rodrigo Contreras is racing at the Tour de Pologne.
“We are happy with Rodrigo in his first season in our team. He is a strong, motivated and fully dedicated to cycling young rider. He is loyal and always ready to help his teammates. Contreras is still missing some experience, but after this first season we are looking forward to see his progress in the next year. I am sure he has everything to get some important results in his career,” said Alexandr Vinokurov, the general manager of Astana Pro Team.
Edoardo Zardini Extends with Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia-KTM
Edoardo Zardini has been a member of Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia-KTM for two years. As a result, the Italian will stay with the team until the end of 2021 under team manager Angelo Citracca. “I am very happy with this new agreement. With this team I recovered myself after a few difficult years. I am part of a great group and I am ready to work again for my leaders and, in some races, to pursue the victory myself. Hopefully I will ride the Giro.”
Hugo Hofstetter Goes to Israel Cycling Academy
The rumour has been around for quite some time, but now has been confirmed by the Israel Cycling Academy: Hugo Hofstetter is leaving Cofidis and will be riding for the Israeli ProContinental team next season.
The 25-year-old Frenchman has a good season: this year, Hofstetter finished fourth in the Scheldeprijs and Halle Ingooigem, and also third in the Trofeo Palma.
Filosi on the Way to Bardiani-CSF
It seems that after a two year period, Iuri Filosi time with Delko-Marseille Provence will come to an end. According to various Italian cycling media, the 27-year-old is on his way to Bardiani-CSF. The official announcement is expected in the not too distant future. This year Filosi did not come close to a victory. His best classification was his sixth place in the opening stage of the Giro di Sicilia.
Cullaigh Becomes Blues’ first 2020 Signing
Young British talent, 23, looks forward to continue his growth as a sprinter and progress together with the rest of the Blues next season.
The Movistar Team confirmed on Monday that Gabriel Cullaigh (Holmfirth, GBR; 1996) has signed a two-year contract with Eusebio Unzué’s outfit, thus becoming the Telefónica-backed squad’s first confirmed addition to its roster for the 2020 season.
Cullaigh’s signing helps the Movistar Team increase its aspirations at sprint finishes, a speciality the Brit, a great rouleur, has steadily improved at during the last few years. In 2019, the current Team Wiggins rider notched up one stage victory in the Volta ao Alentejo, a race where he had already grabbed two wins last year.
Solid performances in Yorkshire (2019) and the Tour of Britain (2018), as well as in races of the UCI U23 Nations Cup or the 2018 GP Liberazione in Italy (3rd) and in top local races – He won the Rutland-Melton classic, with its famous off-road sections, in 2018 – complete the palmarès of the third ever rider from the United Kingdom to race for the Blues in their 40-year history.
Davide Martinelli Comes to Astana Pro Team
Astana Pro Team is happy to announce the arrival of the Italian rider Davide Martinelli, who will join the Kazakh team from January 1st, 2020. The agreement has been signed for 1 year.
“I want to say that I am very happy to come in this great team! I’d like to thank Alexandr Vinokurov for trusting in me. I had a great opportunity to get some good experience in another big team and I am sure that in Astana I will find a great atmosphere where I will have a chance to show my best. I want to thank my present team Deceuninck – Quick Step for these years. Now I am ready to do another step in my career,” said Davide Martinelli.
Davide Martinelli, 26, is a talented Italian rider with some good abilities in one-day races. Among his best results could be mentioned stage wins at the Tour de Pologne and the La Provence in 2016 as well as a gold medal at the U23 Italian National Championships and a bronze medal at the UEC U23 European Road Championships, both back in 2015. Together with his current team Martinelli won the general classification of the team’s competitions Hammer Limburg in 2018 and 2019.
These days Davide Martinelli is defending the colours of the Italian National Team at the UEC European Continental Championships in Netherlands.
“In Davide Martinelli we see a big potential, first of all in the classics and one-day races. He spent a few years in a team, who is heavily specialising in this kind of races, so, despite he is still young, he already has some important experience, which will help the rider on the way to his goals. In our team Davide will get an opportunity to show himself at the classics, I think, he has some good chances to continue progressing as a professional rider. I am happy to welcome Davide in Astana Pro Team,” said general manager Alexandr Vinokurov.
Íñigo Elosegui to race in Movistar Team colours in 2020
The ‘Lion of Zierbena’ from the Basque Country, Spanish U23 champion in 2018 + winner of the prestigious Memorial Valenciaga in 2019, takes the leap towards WorldTour racing with the Blues in 2020 as he signs a three-year contract.
The Movistar Team confirmed Wednesday that Íñigo Elosegui (Zierbena, Vizcaya; 1998), a Spanish rider from the development team Lizarte, will race in its Blue jersey as of next January and through the end of the 2022 season. Elosegui’s signing means the team of Eusebio Unzué will enjoy in its ranks the most talented from its home amateur peloton in the last few years.
The Spanish U23 road race champion in Castellón, in 2018, after a 60km break, as well as winner of the 2019 Memorial Valenciaga, the most prestigious race in the amateur scene, the Basque hopes to continue his solid, dazzling progression as a pro after brilliant exploits in his youth stage.
A perfect mix of skills for the flat, mountain and TT courses have earned this intelligent, team-committed rider numerous chances to race in the international peloton. Top-20 overall finisher in the 2019 U23 Giro, he’s been a member of the Spanish national team at World – Doha, 2016, junior – and European Championships, Mediterranean Games and several UCI Nations Cup events.
Lawrence Naesen, Andrea Vendrame and Clément Champoussin sign with AG2R-La Mondiale
Lawrence Naesen and Andrea Vendrame will join the squad on January 1, 2020, for the next two seasons. Clément Champoussin will wear the AG2R-La Mondiale jersey beginning on August 1, 2020 through 2022.
Lawrence Naesen: “I’m really excited about joining AG2R-La Mondiale. I’m going to race wearing the same jersey as my brother, and that’s really a dream come true. It was actually my goal when I turned professional. During the last two seasons, I have been able to take part in the great races that are close to my heart, but I am eager to continue my progression in racing the Flanderian classics.”
9 top 10s in 2019 (as of 05/08)
Vincent Lavenu: “Lawrence has the experience and culture of the races in Flanders. He is close to his brother Oliver, who is two years older, and his arrival will strengthen our group for the cobbled races where we will try to win a great victory.”
Andrea Vendrame: “Joining a UCI WorldTour team was one of my goals! I am very happy to wear the AG2R LA MONDIALE jersey, one of the most beautiful organisations in the peloton, for the next two seasons. I do not speak French yet, but I have an attachment to this country! Indeed, I have won three races as a professional, and each time it was in France.”
Winner Tro Bro Leon and 4th stage Circuit de la Sarthe (2019); winner of a stage Tour de Bretagne (2017)
24 top 10s in 2019 (as of 05/08)
Vincent Lavenu: “Andrea is a strong puncheur, and can do very well in the climbs, as he was able to demonstrate at the Giro this year when he took second place in a mountain stage. But he is also able to win in the sprint. His profile is interesting and at 25, he has a good margin for progress.”
Clément Champoussin: “I joined the Chambéry Cyclisme Formation with the aim of turning professional, and now it is a reality! I am really happy. I am very much aware that the Tour de l’Avenir (5th) and the World Championship (12th) were a great revelation for me. Joining the AG2R-La Mondiale team is the logical progression from the Chambéry Cyclisme Formation, especially since I already know some riders like Aurélien Paret-Peintre and Benoît Cosnefroy. I still have lots of things to learn, and before August 1st, I want to do well in my last months in the amateurs.”
3rd in the Ronde de l’Isard and in the Course de la Paix (2019); 5th Tour de l’Avenir (2018)
Vincent Lavenu: “Clément comes from MTB (Champion of France Juniors 2016), and he does not have a big handicap on the road. In any case, he has already accomplished some very beautiful things, especially in the mountains. He still has things to learn, but he also has great potential. He will start the season with Chambéry Cyclisme Formation before joining us on August 1, 2020 and remain until 2022.”
Clément Champoussin is the 17th rider from Chambéry Cyclisme Formation (CCF) to turn professional and wear the colours of AG2R-La Mondiale. Romain Bardet, Silvan Dillier, Pierre Latour, Ben Gastauer, Benoît Cosnefroy, Nans Peters, Aurélien Paret-Peintre, Nico Denz, Clément Chevrier and François Bidard are all part of the 2019 AG2R-La Mondiale team who were also previously members of the CCF.
Two more years with Rosti:
Since 2 seasons, we’ve been working closely with our technical partner in textiles to meet professional cycling needs. We are pleased to extend our collaboration with Rosti for the next two years.
Mikkel Bjerg Signs a Three-Year Contract with UAE Team Emirates
The twenty year-old Dane holds 2017 and 2018 Under 23 time trial championship wins
UAE Team Emirates will continue its youth development into 2020 with another young talent, Mikkel Bjerg, signing a three-year contract. Born in Copenhagen in 1998, Bjerg has proved himself as a top class time triallist, winning the world Under 23 title twice in a row (2017 and 2018).
Team manager Joxean Matxin comments on the signing: “Mikkel is one of the hottest prospects in the world when it comes to the time trial, he holds two u-23 World titles and now to have him along with McNulty they will both be a real force in that discipline.It’s also important to point out how close he has come in his attempts to break the World Hour record, and to do that at such a young age is extremely impressive. Mikkel will add great value to our team against the clock. He is not only a great time trial rider: he can become a very versatile cyclist, strong on the flat and on the cobbles and can also do well on the shorter climbs.”
Mikkel Bjerg commented on his move to UAE Team Emirates.
Mikkel, why have you chosen to join UAE?
“I opted for UAE Team Emirates because it is a team showing great interest in the development of young riders. It’s really exciting to be part of a World Tour team characterised by a base of experienced riders along with some of the best talents of the new generation, including Philipsen, Pogačar, McNulty and Ardila. In my current team, Hagens Berman Axeon, young riders work together and motivate each other and I think it will be interesting to do it next season with UAE.”
You’re excited about the move to a World Tour team?
“I’m more than excited for this step in my career. In the last two years I have had the opportunity to grow up in a perfect environment, which led me to the point I’m finally at now – joining the World Tour. I’m really excited to be stepping up and competing at this level.”
What is your goal for the immediate future?
“I would first like to continue to improve, both in road races and in the time trial. I am aiming also to get some good results, more important is to learn from my experienced teammates and get used to the jump in level.”
Vadim Pronskiy as Trainee and New Rider at Astana Pro Team
From August 1st, the 21-year-old Kazakh rider Vadim Pronskiy joins Astana Pro Team as a trainee. Together with the team Pronskiy will ride some one-day races in Italy and, also, will take part in the Tour of Almaty.
Furthermore, from January 1st, 2020 Vadim Pronskiy will join the only Kazakh team in the UCI WorldTour as a neo-pro rider.
“I am so happy that Astana Pro Team saw my potential and believed in me. By my opinion, Astana is one of the strongest teams in the WorldTour and this invitation is a great honour. I understand, that coming to this high level I have to learn a lot, I have to change myself, I have to work much more than I did it before. And I am ready for that. This is a big chance for me as an athlete and I will do my best to justify the trust put in me. I want to thank the management of Astana Pro Team and its general partner Samruk-Kazyna for this chance,” said Vadim Pronskiy.
Vadim Pronskiy is a very talented and promising young rider, who has already reached a number of solid results. Thus, in 2018 Vadim won the general classification of one of the most prestigious youth races Giro Ciclistico della Valle d’Aosta Mont Blanc. In the current season Pronskiy took a solid 3rd place in the overall standings of the Tour de Langkawi and won the youth classification at the Tour de l’Ain and the Tour of Austria.
“For a few years we are monitoring Vadim Pronskiy and year by year he is improving as a rider, showing a great potential. Last year he impressed us with his big victory at the Giro Valle d’Aosta, but we decided to give him some more time for development, since he is still very young. We decided to bring Vadim on a professional level step by step, providing him some possibilities to race together with our team as a trainee. I am sure, it will be a good experience for him ahead of a huge step into the WorldTour level. Also, during his time as a trainee, he will have a chance to prepare for the World Championships. And, from the next year we are bringing him in Astana Pro Team as a neo-pro rider. I am sure that in our team Vadim will meet all he needs for a qualitative development,” said Alexandr Vinokurov, the general manager of Astana Pro Team.
Georg Zimmermann Set to Turn Professional with CCC Team
German rider Georg Zimmermann will join CCC Team on a two-year neo professional contract for the 2020 and 2021 seasons after an initial period as stagiaire for the remainder of 2019, General Manager Jim Ochowicz announced.
Zimmermann, 21, will make his debut in CCC Team colours at the Tour of Slovakia in September where he will have the chance to gain more experience before turning professional in 2020.
“We are pleased to welcome Georg Zimmermann to CCC Team, first as a stagiaire and then as a neo professional from next year. Georg has already shown great talent and potential, most recently by winning the King of the Mountain jersey at Int. Österreich-Rundfahrt-Tour of Austria, where he raced against our riders, and with victories at Trofeo Piva and Coppa della Pace this year. By bringing Georg on as stagiaire for the rest of the year, we hope to accelerate his development and give him the chance to see how a WorldTour team operates before he makes the important step in his career as a neo professional,” Ochowicz explained. “Georg has already raced against WorldTour teams in the past and has demonstrated maturity beyond his 21 years of age. We believe he has a bright future ahead of him at CCC Team and with Germany a key market for our title sponsor CCC, and Reno, we are excited to add another German rider to our roster.”
Georg Zimmermann is excited to step up to the WorldTour level after racing for the past four years with Continental teams. “There’s not much more I can say other than I am really excited and really looking forward to joining CCC Team. It is a dream come true for me. Every cyclist dreams of being able to race at the highest level of sport so, to have that come true is a special feeling. I am excited to see how the team operates and race and train in a professional environment, with the best coaches and equipment. It will be a good opportunity for me as stagiaire this year before I officially join the team for the 2020 season,” Zimmermann said. “My goal is to keep improving as a cyclist. Together, with the team, I want to learn how to get the best out of myself and support the team as much as I can. I think I am well suited to one-day races but really, I will just be looking to gain as much experience as possible and will see how I develop.”
Zimmermann, who was fifth at the German National Road Race Championships this year, joins fellow countrymen Simon Geschke and Jonas Koch in the CCC Team roster.
Haidet, Hecht to Race for Donnelly-Aevolo Cyclo-Cross Team
Donnelly and Aevolo are joining forces for the 2019-2020 cyclocross season to create a powerhouse team with Lance Haidet and Gage Hecht. The Donnelly Pro Cyclocross Team will kick off their official partnership with Aevolo when they take to the start line on Sept. 7.
The partnership, Donnelly President Donn Kellogg stated, “is a natural fit.” He explained, “Since the inception of the company and throughout my many years involved in competition and coaching I’ve championed developmental racing. Helping racers realise their potential has long been my passion and has been part of Donnelly’s mission.” With a similar mission is Aevolo Cycling, a pro road team comprised exclusively of U23 whose tenant is developing elite cyclists.
“Our success on the road has exceeded all expectations ten-fold,” said, Aevolo owner Steven van der Zwan. “The foundation is built from a group of donors, sponsors and partners who are passionate about supporting cycling and youth development in general. This is precisely what Donn Kellogg has been doing throughout his career, particularly with cyclocross. There isn’t a better partner to help us enable these talented young riders to reach their highest possible level of success,” he added.
Representing the two ideologies of these contributing partners for the premiere of 2019-2020 Donnelly – Aevolo Pro Cyclocross Team are Lance Haidet and Gage Hecht – both current members of the Aevolo Cycling Pro Road Team. In 2015, when Kellogg began investing in the future of cyclocross by developing young riders, Haidet was one of the first riders involved. Two years later Haidet won the U23 USA Cyclocross Championship. This past July he added the U23 Road Championship title to his palmarès.
One of his Haidet’s biggest ‘cross rivals and the sport’s most promising racer is Gage Hecht. His is a name that was repeated in headlines throughout 2018 and one likely to be mentioned alongside Haidet’s in the coming season. On racing with his old nemesis, Haidet said, “Gage is a great friend of mine both on and off the bike and I am really excited to have him as a teammate this year on the team. I think together, our strengths will certainly make us a formidable force!”
No stranger to US titles, Hecht earned his first two in 2015 and 2016 as the Junior National Cyclocross Champion. He’s won two Pan Am Cyclocross titles, one as a junior and another last year in the U23 category. Even more significant was Hecht’s elite men’s 2018 bronze medal earned at the US Cyclocross National Championship after petitioning out of the U23 category so that he could race with the elites. “Lance and I have shared the Aevolo jersey since my first year in the U23 ranks,” said Hecht, “and we’ve gained a lot of experience racing together. Our riding styles, while different, will compliment each other well. I think every race is going to be worth watching!”
The team will ride Donnelly’s C/C framesets introduced last season and will select from a quiver of tubular and tubeless-ready cyclocross tires depending on conditions and terrain. Among the battery of weapons are the Donnelly LAS, the PDX, the MXP, and the BOS.
Haidet and Hecht:
Figures of Credibility as at 1st July
The cases revealed in cycling during the first semester of the year are not good. In total, 15 cases were revealed including 7 from the ‘Operation Aderlass’ police investigation.
“Always leave a light on”. MPCC President Roger Legeay’s famous punchline illustrates that it is necessary to stay vigilant at any time regarding the attacks to the credibility of cycling. The beginning of 2019 shows how accurate this phrase is.
15 cases were revealed since the beginning of the year, with 7 of them involving pro riders, in only 6 months. These are the worst results since 2014 – since we started accounting doping and corruption cases.
These results partly are the consequence of a German police investigation led in Austria: The Operation Aderlass. This operation involves 7 cases that were all revealed during the first semester. It shed a light on very modern techniques of – sometimes hard – doping (blood transfusions), which casts a shadow on the efficiency of antidoping fight and tarnishes the image of cycling.
Although, it is possible to relativize the reach of some of these cases as 4 of them are procedures regarding facts that happened years ago (2011-2013).
These 15 cases mainly concern 3 countries: Colombia (4), Slovenia (3) and Austria (3).
Hence, at the end of June, cycling was placing 4th in the “most affected by attacks to the sport’s ethics” ranking, coming after weightlifting, baseball and track and field. At the end of 2018, cycling was only coming in 13th position.
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Don’t forget to check the “NEWSWIRE” section, you can find it on the homepage, just above the EuroTrash section. The bits of news that missed the EuroTrash deadline are in there, plus any news as-it-happens will be added there too.