Strade Bianche is the first course of the new 2020 race menu on the 1st of August. Worlds could move to April next year – Top Story. Race report from the Croatia National road champs. So much other cycling news: Van Avermaet to AG2R-La Mondiale, INEOS Grenadiers, Colombians in Madrid, except Betancur and UCI wanted late Milan-Sanremo. Rider news: Chris Froome, Philippe Gilbert, Marianne Vos, Niki Terpstra, Dylan Teuns and Thomas De Gendt. Race news from Tour of Burgos, Critérium du Dauphiné, Tour of Wallonie, Cyclassics Hamburg and 2024 Tour de France. Team news: AG2r-La Mondiale on BMC, Sunweb and Cofidis. Plus Alberto Contador Foundation race postponed, Georg Preidler convicted of sporting fraud and Movistar to wear charity jersey at Strade Bianche. Big EUROTRASH Thursday!
TOP STORY: Moving the World Championships to April 2021 Possible
There is a chance that if the World championships cannot take place in September, the global title race in Switzerland will move to April next year, according to La Dernière Heure. The Belgian newspaper says the UCI has examined the option of postponing to April.
The World championships should take place in the week after Liège-Bastogne-Liège. It would mean that the rainbow jersey will be awarded twice in 2021. The revival of the corona virus worries the various parties. The World championships is on the calendar from September 20 to 27. If the guidelines of the cantons of Valais and Vaud make the organisation impossible, the UCI will keep the option open to move the World championships to April 2021. However, the organisation does not consider this scenario very likely. “This option is not completely excluded, but it is unlikely that we will use it,” said Nicolas Voide, member of the organising committee.
The organisers remain optimistic for the time being that the World championships will continue in September. In Switzerland it is assumed that the second wave of infections (if it occurs) is not expected until late October, early November. Every two weeks it is examined whether the health rules need to be adjusted.
Worlds plan ‘C’
Croatia National Road Race Championships 2020
Josip Rumac also successfully defended his title in the road race one day after succeeding himself as Croatian time trial champion. This makes the Androni rider the first Croat to win “the double” for the second year in a row. Maja Perinović extended her title to the women.
The Croatian championships were held in the port city of Zadar, where the elites, who competed with the promises, had a 11.6-kilometre lap that had to be covered twelve times. After almost three and a half hours of racing, Rumac crossed the line. Viktor Potočki finished second, Antonio Barać third. For Rumac, it was his third title in the road race, after also being the best in 2017 and 2019.
Croatia National Championships Result:
1. Josip Rumac (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec) in 3:23:39
2. Viktor Potočki (Ljubljana Gusto Santic)
3. Antonio Barać (Meridiana Kamen Team)
4. Filip Kvasina at 0:03
5. Carlo Jurisevic (Ljubljana Gusto Santic) at 0:05
6. Matija Lojen (Meridiana Kamen Team)
7. Anthony Bilić
8. Silvije Tomac at 0:09
9. Mateo Bratic at 0:11
10. Jopic Toljan at 1:12.
Van Avermaet to AG2R-La Mondiale
AG2R-La Mondiale needs to find replacements for Romain Bardet and Pierre Latour. According to L’Equipe, both riders (who are part of the pre-selection for the Tour) have decided to leave the French WorldTour tam at the end of the season, Greg Van Avermaet could be on his way to the team.
29-year-old Bardet has long been associated with Sunweb, where he is to replace Tom Dumoulin, where the team would like to use him as leader for the Grand Tours. According to L’Equipe, in addition to Sam Oomen, Wilco Kelderman will also leave Sunweb.
Latour (26) – who, like Bardet, has Joona Laukka as agent – would move to Total-Direct Energie. There he would like to regain his form after a period of injuries and focus on week long stage races. In addition, he prefers a free role in the Tour as opposed to undisputed leadership.
AG2r-La Mondiale team boss Vincent Lavenu is clear about the departure of his two leaders. “I am not afraid of what will happen if this or that rider leaves. We control the future of the team. We remain a project with a lot of ambition and will continue to make talented riders into great riders,” he says. Lavenu indicates that the team will continue to focus on stage races. “The goal is not to lose and replace leaders in the mountains.”
Bardet came from the training team Chambéry Cyclisme Formation nine years ago. “Although I dare not claim that we ‘made’ Romain,” said Lavenu. “He did that himself, together with his family and his environment. But we are proud to have accompanied him.”
Lavenu recently extended the contract of 24-year-old talent Benoît Cosnefroy. He is seen as a rider for the Ardennes classics and short stage races. Oliver Naesen also recently extended his contract. According to the French sports newspaper, his training partner Greg Van Avermaet – who is in uncertainty after the withdrawal of main sponsor CCC – has offered his services to the French formation.
Where will Van Avermaet end up next year?
Team INEOS to become the INEOS Grenadiers
Team INEOS has today confirmed they will switch to become the INEOS Grenadiers, effective from the start of the Tour de France on August 29th 2020.
The change will align the team with the Grenadier, a no-nonsense 4×4 vehicle designed, engineered and manufactured by INEOS Automotive.
In 2017, INEOS Chairman, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, a car enthusiast and experienced adventurer, identified a gap in the market for a stripped back, utilitarian, hard-working 4×4 vehicle, built on purpose. The Grenadier’s design was unveiled in July 2020 and will go into production in late 2021.
The Team’s new name and brand will officially launch in the week leading up to the Tour de France in Nice.
Colombian Riders Land in Madrid
The flight with many Colombian athletes on board, including Egan Bernal and Nairo Quintana, has arrived in Madrid. The plane landed at Barajas Airport on Monday morning, just after nine o’clock.
Because of the measures regarding the corona virus, and air traffic, it was long questioned whether the Colombian riders would be in Europe in time to participate in, for example, the Tour de France. But in early July, it was announced that the riders from the South American country could fly on July 19. The athletes were pre-tested for corona. After this, they received a certificate allowing them to enter Spain without having to quarantine for fourteen days.
Yesterday it was time and the athletes could board the plane, which was ready at the El Dorado airport just outside Bogotá. Among them were Egan Bernal, Rigoberto Urán, Nairo Quintana, Miguel Ángel López, Fernando Gaviria and Esteban Chaves, as well as athletes from basketball and football who traveled with them. They were welcomed at the airport by President Iván Duque, Sport Minister Ernesto Lucena and the Spanish ambassador to Colombia.
“We’re starting our national holiday (July 20, Colombia’s independence) with this sporting flight, which was accomplished through teamwork. Thanks to a concerted effort, our athletes can resume their competition in Europe so that they can continue to delight us with their successes,” said sports minister Lucena. Flight AV 152 was expected in Madrid at 10:00, but the aircraft with the athletes landed an hour earlier.
Health Problems Keep Betancur from Special ‘Athletes Flight’
Carlos Betancur did not return to Europe with his countrymen early this week to prepare for the resumption of the season. The Colombian missed the special ‘athletes flight’ because someone in his close family had serious health problems.
Athletes from the Medellín area, such as Betancur, would travel with two small planes to Bogotá, where they would catch the special ‘athletes flight’. The other athletes were waiting for him until the last moment, but the Movistar rider did not show up at José María Córdova airport. However, according to Zikloland, the Colombian was able to justify his absence due to a serious health problem in his immediate family.
The corona measures in air traffic between South America and Europe jeopardise Betancur’s participation in the second half of the season. Betancur should have had an Italian program including Strade Bianche on August 1, Tirreno-Adriatico, the Giro d’Italia, where he would assist Marc Soler in the mountains, and the Tour of Lombardy. He would also participate in the Flèche Wallonne.
Carlos Betancur missing:
UCI did Not Want Milan-San Remo on the Calendar After Summer
It was the UCI that decided to place Milan-San Remo on the updated calendar on August 8. City councillor Alessandro Sindoni of San Remo told Tuttobiciweb that the mayor of the coastal town had insisted with organiser RCS on a date after the summer.
“To those asking why Milan-San Remo has not been moved to November, I say Mayor Alberto Biancheri has asked RCS for a date after the summer,” said Sindoni. “But we were told it is a UCI global event, so something else was decided. So the new date has not been determined by the RCS or the municipality.”
Meanwhile, RCS, led by Mauro Vegni, have their hands full preparing for Strade Bianche on August 1. “We try to have everything ready on time,” says Vegni.
“The goal is close by and we want to get it right, but it is clear that we must do everything according to the measures imposed by the minister’s decree. We must also take account of the regulations per region. It is currently very difficult and stressful, but we knew that in advance,” said the president of the RCS.
Alaphilippe – First in Sanremo 2019:
Chris Froome Resumes Season in the Route d’Occitanie
Chris Froome resumes his season on August 1-4 in the Route d’Occitanie. The leader of Team Ineos, who will leave for Israel Start-Up Nation after this year, will also ride the Critérium du Dauphiné (12-16 August) in the run-up to the Tour de France.
Froome may also ride the Tour de l’Ain between the Route d’Occitanie and the Dauphiné (7-9 August), along with Geraint Thomas and possibly Egan Bernal. The Colombian probably starts again – like Froome – in the Route d’Occitanie.
The leaders of Team Ineos will then all ride the Dauphiné as the final preparation for the Tour de France. There is no question yet of a designated leader. That decision will not be made until the season starts. “All three have shown that they are able to lead the team and are ready to do that,” the team said. “A definitive division of roles will be made by then, when there is more information about the shape level and which division of roles best suits the strategy.”
Froome to start season in the Route d’Occitanie:
Team Ineos Technical Director Does Not Believe in Chris Froome Tour Victory
Technical director Casper Jeppesen has little faith in a Tour de France victory for Chris Froome. The Dane says the 35-year-old Briton “incredibly committed” and “a fantastic athlete,” but a Tour victory seems far away.
“There is no doubt that he has spent a lot of time in his rehabilitation, and as always Chris has been a fantastic athlete and incredibly dedicated. I don’t think there are other riders who trained as hard during this corona crisis as he did,” Jeppesen said to Danish TV2. “But I am not one hundred percent sure that he was able to prepare enough to be where he should be in order to win.”
Froome won the Tour de France in 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017. This year, if selected, he will have to share the lead with Geraint Thomas (winner 2018) and Egan Bernal (winner 2019). “A lot has happened since Froome last won. We won the Tour with both Geraint and Egan, and Froome has aged and experienced a very serious crash last year. I really think they all have so much respect for each other that it won’t be a problem.”
No 2020 Tour win for Froome?
Daniel Martin Looking Forward to Race with Froome
Daniel Martin is the top GC rider within Israel Start-Up Nation this season, but the Irishman will race in 2021 with Chris Froome. “We can complement each other well,” Martin told Velonews.
Sylvan Adams, the man behind Israel Start-Up Nation, is eager to win the Tour de France. As a four-time winner, Froome has to help the Israeli team with a first Tour victory. The question is whether 33-year-old Daniel Martin can still have personal ambitions in the most important cycle race of the season next year.
Martin is however looking forward to the arrival of Froome, who is still riding for Team Ineos. “We all have to step up a gear now, with the result that the team will only get better. I am also convinced that I can learn a lot from him. We know each other well and are even friends. I am especially very enthusiastic.”
Team owner Adams is a wealthy man and has the budget to attract even more strong riders. “However, I don’t expect the team management to attract one rider after the other. The riders must fit within the team and within the friendly and family atmosphere. The team has a certain vision. It all contributed to the sporty growth. I can’t wait to race with Froome. Chris is one of the best riders of his generation and he can really inspire you,” said Martin.
Froome and Martin together next year:
Team Ineos with Carapaz and Sosa to Tour of Burgos
Team Ineos will start the Tour of Burgos in exactly one week with defending champion Iván Ramiro Sosa and Richard Carapaz. According to the organisation of the Spanish stage race, the British team will also bring Eddie Dunbar and Filippo Ganna.
22-year-old Sosa has won the past two editions of the Tour of Burgos and may also be one of the favourites for the overall victory this year, although there will be more top riders this season. Carapaz finished third with Movistar last year and now hopes to shine for his new team Ineos.
Both riders have now made the trip from South America to Europe, just like Sebastián Henao, who is also part of the seven-man selection. Dunbar, Ganna, Christian Knees and the young Spaniard Carlos Rodríguez will also be in action in northern Spain.
Team Ineos for the Tour of Burgos (July 28-August 1):
Richard Carapaz (Ecu)
Eddie Dunbar (Ire)
Filippo Ganna (Ita)
Sebastián Henao (Col)
Christian Knees (Ger)
Carlos Rodríguez (Spa)
Iván Ramiro Sosa (Col).
Carapaz to lead Ineos in Burgos:
UAE Team Emirates with Star Line-Up for Tour of Burgos
UAE Team Emirates will bring Fernando Gaviria, Alexander Kristoff, Fabio Aru and David De la Cruz to the Tour of Burgos next week. These riders are on the provisional list of riders, according to the race organisation.
The WorldTour team has selected three climbers with Aru, De la Cruz and the young Colombian Andrés Camilo Ardila. Aru hopes to return to his old level after a few difficult years. Unlike Aru, de la Cruz (31) is a regular in the Tour of Burgos. Last year, the Spanish climber finished eighth in the final classification, in 2017 and 2018 he finished third. The ten years younger neoprof Ardila, last year’s glorious winner of the Giro d’Italia U23, may surprise.
UAE Team Emirates can count on top sprinters Gaviria and Kristoff on the flat stages. Gaviria became infected with the corona virus during the UAE Tour, but was declared cured at the end of March. Lead-out men Maximiliano Richeze (also an ex-corona patient) and Sven Erik Bystrøm will also start in Burgos.
UAE Team Emirates for the Tour of Burgos (July 28-August 1):
Andrés Camilo Ardila (Col)
Fabio Aru (Ita)
David De la Cruz (Spa)
Fernando Gaviria (Col)
Alexander Kristoff (Nor)
Sven Erik Bystrøm (Nor)
Maximiliano Richeze (Arg).
Stage wins for Gaviria:
Philippe Gilbert: “Better races without an audience than no races at all”
Philippe Gilbert is looking forward to the restart of the cycling season. In an interview with RTBF, he discusses the question marks surrounding the restart and expresses his concerns about recent developments.
At the moment, Gilbert is with his teammates of Lotto Soudal in a training camp in the Vosges, adapting to the new situation. “We try to stay within certain bubbles,” he explains. “There are also only two sougniers and a mechanic present. So it is minimal. It almost looks like we are a continental team.”
Gilbert’s return is scheduled for August 1, when he is at the start of the Strade Bianche. “We don’t yet know exactly how this restart will go,” he says. “The UCI, the organisers and the teams have drawn up many rules,” said Gilbert. “Two corona tests are compulsory for each race. It’s not fun, but it’s part of it.”
The competitions will be organised in a special way this autumn. The Tour of Poland has already indicated that it will hold the race without an audience. “I like to watch other sports. Formula 1 started without a spectator, which feels a bit strange,” said Gilbert. “But in the meantime there is a competition that can be followed via the media. If we can do that too, we will save cycling. We can also offer spectacle without contact with the public. Better races without an audience than no races at all.”
Nevertheless, he remains cautious about how the situation will develop in the coming weeks. “I hope we can race soon. If you look at the current situation, you can see that the numbers are increasing daily. It will be worrying again.”
Gilbert starts the season again:
Vos is not worried about CCC-Liv’s future
Marianne Vos is not worried about the future of her team CCC-Liv. Main sponsor CCC will not continue with the men’s team, but the women need not fear that the sponsorship will be stopped. Vos tells the NOS that the team has been given certainty about the future.
“Our management has kept us informed and they are not worried. So that’s great,” said Vos. “The team management has provided certainty. That’s nice.” The three-time world champion on the road is on the eve of her return. Vos will start three one-day races in the Basque Country on Thursday. Vos is looking forward to the restart. “I feel very good,” said Vos. “Exciting how everyone is doing and how it will go. I think everyone has been looking forward to taking action again.”
The 33-year-old Vos had surgery on her left groin area in January, after which she could not train for six weeks. “My recovery went very well. Actually I was ready for the first race at the end of March, beginning of April. I have rarely had a period in which I was able to train so well. With enough rest, so I’m not afraid of a relapse after my injury.”
Vos will be working hard in the coming months. “The season has actually been crammed in two months. If everything goes through, you will have a very busy period,” said Vos. Paris-Roubaix for women is high on her wish list. “It is great that it has been added to the calendar. But I don’t know yet how well that race will suit me. It requires a very specific preparation, but it seems very nice to me.”
On Thursday the Emakumeen Nafarroako Klasikoa awaits, where she will meet Anna van der Breggen and Annemiek van Vleuten, and the others of the peloton. “Many measures are being taken. Both from the organisation, the international cycling association and the teams. Protocols are followed, so it must be safe. Sport is very beautiful. We want nothing more than to race, but it must be justified.”
Marianne Vos starts racing today:
AG2R La Mondiale Switches to BMC Bikes
The riders of AG2R-La Mondiale will race next year on bikes from the Swiss company BMC. The French WorldTour team of Vincent Lavenu and the bicycle manufacturer have agreed.
AG2R-La Mondiale is currently using Eddy Merckx bikes for the second consecutive season, but the collaboration with the Belgian bicycle brand is not continuing. The French team joins forces with BMC, which has been bicycle supplier to NTT Pro Cycling since last year. Before that, the Swiss company supported the BMC Racing Team.
The cooperation of AG2R-La Mondiale and BMC may also explain the interest in Greg Van Avermaet. From 2011 to 2018, the Belgian classic specialist of (now) Team CCC competed continuously for the BMC Racing Team for eight years, achieving his greatest successes on a BMC bike. According to L’Equipe, he is said to have offered his services to the French formation.
Van Avermaet and BMC together again?
Spekenbrink: “If we want to win the Tour, we cannot be concerned with the opinion of others”
Team Sunweb wants to win the Tour de France within six years. Team boss Iwan Speelbrink explained in an interview with De Telegraaf that his team is in a transition period, with the ultimate main goal of winning the final classification of the most important race of the cycling calendar. “Within six years? That may also be faster,” said Spekenbrink.
The team will deliberately focus on young riders. “They are super ambitious. Because they improve quickly, it is easier to be committed.” He is aware that his team demands a lot from his people. “One of the things is that you are open to improvements and innovations, without causing trouble immediately.”
The ultimate goal of the team is to win the Tour de France. In doing so, the team follows its own course. “If we want to win the Tour, we cannot be concerned with the opinions of others.” Spekenbrink disagrees with the criticism of his team’s protocols. “We only have one protocol and that is respect. You need that if you want to perform together with more than 120 people,” he says. “Everything is negotiable with us. We want to do everything: invest hours, pay millions, make knowledge available, put the entire team on top. At the same time, we also say: we do not cross the line of respect. Once it becomes a fighting relationship, it takes too much energy and you have to put an end to it.”
Spekenbrink is convinced of the possibilities of his selection. “From this group, supplemented with what is still to come from the training team for next season, you have to look at the team photo in fifteen years. Then you don’t know what you see. A lot of world class players. By that time, you don’t believe this has all ridden in a team. I am convinced.”
Sunweb looking to the future:
Terpstra Back on the Bike
Niki Terpstra is recovering well from his crash, almost five weeks ago. The classic specialist of the Total Direct Energie team announced on his social media that he has already completed his first bicycle rides.
Terpstra Tweeted: “Really happy I could start rehabilitation process with treatments&exercises bt physiotherapist under supervision of the team. Thnx to the good recovery I was able to do my first bike rides. Not smooth or fast, that’s still a very long way to go, but the first steps have been taken.”
First rides for Terpstra:
World Championships Teuns Main Goal
Dylan Teuns resumes his season in less than two weeks with the participation in Strade Bianche. Then the Tour de France, where he has a domestique role, and the World championships stand out on his program. The Bahrain-McLaren rider wants to assert himself especially in the battle for the rainbow jersey.
Teuns recently announced that he will help leader Mikel Landa in the coming edition of the Tour de France to a good classification. To Sporza he also mentions Wout Poels. “The team is very ambitious with Landa and Poels, so I will have to drive more in service. Together with Damiano Caruso and Pello Bilbao we can divide the work on the cols.”
For the Belgian rider it is important not to leave the Tour completely empty in view of the Classics and the World championships in Swiss Aigle and Martigny. “I had already touched on the World championships last winter and that has not changed now. It would be good to have a nice World championships on the super compensation of the Tour. That’s my main goal this autumn.”
Thomas De Gendt Renews His Contract for Two Years with Lotto Soudal
On Lotto Soudal’s training camp in the Vosges, Thomas De Gendt (33) announced extending his contract with the Belgian World Tour team until the end of 2022. De Gendt had an agreement with the team until end 2020.
“It was so obvious for me. It never entered my mind to change teams. Why should I?” Thomas De Gendt said. “I know this house already for six years. Honestly, I have never been interested in another team. Lotto Soudal knows me and gives me the freedom I need, a freedom that I would never get somewhere else. In the past, we have won many nice races together. I am convinced that together we still have nice years ahead of us.”
As a multiple winner of stages in Grand Tours – Tour (2x), Giro and Vuelta – Thomas De Gendt will continue to focus on stage races.
“For the classics we have other champions such as Philippe Gilbert, Tim Wellens and John Degenkolb. I will help them where I can. My personal dream is to win a stage in the ten biggest stage races. As I have already won in Catalunya, Paris-Nice, Suisse, Romandie and Dauphiné, I just miss Tirreno and País Vasco. Unfortunately, this will not be possible in 2020 but I hope to achieve it in the coming years, with the support of the team.”
“I am happy to see that Thomas loves his current environment,” General Manager John Lelangue adds “He can win races but is a perfect team player as well. This contract extension is good for the stability and continuity of the team. Thomas understands that Lotto Soudal really has a vision. Moreover, he has been so successful and loyal to the team. We need him. With Thomas we continue to build on the team’s future. More agreements will be announced soon.”
Thomas De Gendt:
Two Stagieires Join Cofidis
Nicolas Prodhomme (23) and Enrico Zanoncello (22) get the opportunity to prove themselves at Cofidis. Prodhomme is known as a promising climber, Zanoncello is more of a sprinter.
Prodhomme finished eighth in the U23 edition of Paris-Roubaix and also finished fourth in Il Piccolo Lombardia. Last season he finished sixth in Le Tour de Savoie Mont Blanc and ninth in the Grand Prix Priessnitz Spa, a highly regarded stage race in the Czech Republic. Prodhomme, winner of the Orlen Nations Grand Prix, also rode the Tour de l’Avenir in 2019. He finished 24th on the overall, almost forty minutes behind final winner Tobias Foss. The climber was a stagieire for AG2R-La Mondiale two years ago.
The Italian Zanoncello, from the Zalf Euromobil Désirée Fior team, recently won the Coppa San Geo and the GP dell’Industria a Civitanova Marche. They will join Cofidis on August 1st.
New riders for Cofidis:
Critérium du Dauphiné 2020: The Race for the Summit
The 72nd edition of the Critérium du Dauphiné has already earned its place in the history books. The race presents a new five-stage format with no time trials, in addition to an unprecedented starting point in the capital of the Massif Central. Indeed, the opening day will serve as a dress rehearsal for the city of Clermont-Ferrand, before riders gather there again for the 14th stage of the Tour de France in September. Stage 1 will offer the competitors precious little opportunity to find their legs: covering a total of 218.5 km and culminating in a final circuit around Saint-Christo-en-Jarez, the route throws up constant changes in pace and gradient – riders beware, your refuelling strategy may be crucial!
Having been partially redesigned in order to ensure the race’s integration into the revised international calendar, the 2020 route will mark a break with tradition. Gone is the sprint finish in Bourg-de-Péage, with the riders embarking from the second day on a quartet of alpine stages that are guaranteed to push the peloton to its limit. The racing on Thursday and Friday will follow a dense and cadenced itinerary featuring a succession of technical descents, including the Côte Maillet, as well as the first cols. Notable among the latter will be a new route up to the Col de la Madeleine, a climb also featuring in the Tour de France for the first time on the 17th stage of this year’s race.
The real showdown in the mountains is reserved for the weekend, however, with 4,700 metres of elevation gain to tackle on Saturday alone. In order to prevail, stage contenders will need to keep enough energy in the tank for one final flight up to the altiport of Megève. Sunday’s grand finale, also in Megève, will unfold on a loop punctuated with four major tests: the Côte de Domancy, the Col de Romme, the Col de la Colombière and lastly, in the shadow of Mont Blanc, the gruelling Côte de Cordon. The stage is set for an alpine extravaganza, played out against the backdrop of the Grand Départ of the Tour de France, which will be just over the horizon on 29th August in Nice.
Ø Following the revision of the UCI calendar due to the coronavirus epidemic, the Critérium du Dauphiné 2020 will start on Wednesday 12 August in Clermont-Ferrand and finish on Sunday 16 August in Megève.
Ø The shortened five-stage race, which includes neither time trial nor prologue, will feature a series of climbs building up to Sunday’s climax in Megève. The last four stages remain unchanged from the original route, while the new first day will see the riders traversing undulating terrain between Clermont-Ferrand and Saint-Christo-en-Jarez.
Ø The favourites for the forthcoming Tour de France already have their sights set on the intense examination in the mountains: Primoz Roglic, Egan Bernal, Tom Dumoulin, Julian Alaphilippe, Romain Bardet and Thibaut Pinot have all identified the Dauphiné as a key objective in their preparations for the Tour.
Route of the Critérium du Dauphiné 2020:
Ø Wednesday 12 August – 1st stage – Clermont-Ferrand (63) > Saint-Christo-en-Jarez (42) – 218.5 km
Ø Thursday 13 August – 2nd stage – Vienne (38) > Col de Porte (38) – 135 km
Ø Friday 14 August – 3rd stage – Corenc (38) > Saint-Martin-de-Belleville (73) – 157 km
Ø Saturday 15 August – 4th stage – Ugine (73) > Megève (74) – 157 km
Ø Sunday 16 August – 5th stage – Megève (74) > Megève (74) – 153.5 km
2020 Tour of Wallonia Route
The Tour of Wallonia organisation has completed the stage schedule for the four-day stage race. Frasnes-lez-Anvaing near Ronse takes the place of Tubize, which no longer wanted to organise the start of the second stage.
The organisation had to go back to the drawing board, after the municipality of Aat indicated that it did not want to take any risks during the corona period and withdrew as the finish of the opening stage. And then Tubeke also waived the start of stage two. After Templeuve previously appeared as a replacement for Aat, the organisation has now completed the stage schedule as Frasnes-lez-Anvaing takes the place of Tubize.
“We would like to thank Templeuve and Frasnes-lez-Anvaing for quickly replacing the places Aat and Tubize, which recently withdrew,” the organisation said in a press release today. Full details of the four stages of the Tour of Wallonia will be announced shortly. Last season, Loïc Vliegen won the final victory and won the stage to Beyne Heusay.
Tour de Wallonie Stages (August 16-19):
16/8 – Stage 1: Soignies – Templeuve
17/8 – Stage 2: Frasnes-Lez-Anvaing – Wavre
18/8 – Stage 3: Montzen – Visé
19/8 – Stage 4: Blegny – Erezée.
Loïc Vliegen – 2019 winner:
Cyclassics Hamburg Canceled
No Cyclassics in Hamburg this year on the cycling calendar. The organisation of the German WorldTour event has decided, in consultation with the regional authorities, to cancel the competition. Earlier, the Cyclassics was moved to October 3.
It was a tough quest for the German organisers to find a new place on the calendar. Not August 16, but Saturday October 3 was found for the Cyclassics. This is in contrast to Eschborn-Frankfurt, which was previously moved to 2021.
“When we shifted the Cyclassics Hamburg, we were confident that we could deliver an exceptional event on the new date,” the organisers said in a statement. “Unfortunately, due to rules related to the current Covid-19 pandemic and after discussions with the local authorities in Hamburg, we regret to report that the course cannot continue in 2020.”
The eyes of the organisation are now moving towards 2021, when the one-day race for sprinters is scheduled for August 22. This makes Elia Viviani the last winner of the Cyclassics for a year longer.
Viviani won in 2019:
Possible Grand Départ in Northern Italy
Christian Prudhomme was in Bologna on Wednesday morning to talk about a possible start to the Tour de France in Emilia-Romagna and Florence. It is reported that the Grand Départ of 2024 will be the first time that the Tour de France starts in Italy.
Tour director Prudhomme met the regional headquarters of the Emilia-Romagna region in Bologna with regional president Stefano Bonaccini, mayor Dario Nardella of Florence and Italian national team coach Davide Cassani, who is also involved in the tourism promotion of the region. The topic of discussion was the possible start of the Tour de France in Emilia-Romagna and Florence in one of the upcoming editions.
“There is a common desire to implement a large and high-quality project, a historic event since the great French competition has never started in our country,” said the region. According to sports newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, Emilia-Romagna and Florence are targeting the Tour start in 2024. The Tour de France will start in Nice next month, next year will be Copenhagen.
Two months ago, Florence expressed the ambition to organise the Grand Départ of the Tour de France in the near future together with the Emilia-Romagna region. According to Mayor Nardella, winning the Tour start is one of the ways to breathe new life into Florence. “Our wish is to bring major international sporting events to the city. I am also thinking of working with Emilia-Romagna to organise the Games in 2032.”
Tour’24 to start in Italy:
The Alberto Contador Foundation’s Race for Cycling Academies Postponed Until 2021
The fourth edition of the Alberto Contador Foundation Race for Cycling Academies will have to wait until next year. The organisation, after carefully studying the ‘Protocol for the Adaptation of the Competition on the occasion of the COVID’ published by the Madrid Cycling Federation in early July, raises a series of logistical complications of complex solution that invite to focus on the 2021 edition.
More info, here.
Next year for the Contador ride:
Former Pro Rider Georg Preidler Convicted of Sporting Fraud
Georg Preidler has been sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment for committing commercial sporting fraud by an Innsbruck court. The former pro of Team Sunweb and Groupama-FDJ has also been fined €2,880.
The prosecutor had accused Preidler of misleading cycling teams, organisers and supporters from March 2017 to March 2019 through the use of blood doping and growth hormones. Partly due to the payment of premiums paid, sponsorship money and prize money, compensation of €286,000 was demanded.
The case of the 30-year-old Austrian former pro was assessed by an Innsbruck court. The judge did not go along with the damages claimed, but did impose a 12-month suspended prison sentence and a fine of €2,880. Preidler had previously admitted partial guilt.
U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame Announces Four 2020 Inductees
Four legends of American cycling have been voted into the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame. The Class of 2020 inductees are: Jeff Pierce (Modern Road & Track Competitor), Marianne Martin (Veteran Road and Track Competitor), Leigh Donovan (Off-Road Competitor), and Joe Breeze (Contributor to the Sport). There are now 161 Inductees in the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame.
Normally held each November, the 34th annual USBHOF induction ceremony has been postponed until coronavirus restrictions have been lifted for large gatherings.
The Class of 2020 Inductees include:
Jeff Pierce – Modern Road and Track: Jeff Pierce is the only American besides Greg LeMond to have won (in 1987) the final stage of the Tour de France. Pierce began racing in 1975 with the Wolverine Sports Club in Detroit, Michigan. He raced for three teams in his career: Schwinn (Schwinn Wolverine, Schwinn National Team, Schwinn Icy Hot), Team 7-Eleven and Chevrolet LA Sheriffs. Pierce raced in seven Grand Tours, all with the legendary Team 7-Eleven.
Pierce won multi-stage bicycle races such as the 1985 Berliner Etappenfahrt, the 1986 Vuelta de Bisbee, and the 1987 United Texas Tour and finished second overall in the 1987 Coors Classic and the 1994 Redlands Bicycle Classic. He also won the 1985 Nevada City Classic and the 1986 La Jolla Grand Prix. Pierce teamed with Steve Hegg to win the 1995 U.S. National Championship in the Madison race category.
Marianne Martin – Veteran Road and Track: Martin remains the only American woman to win the Tour de France Féminin or succeeding versions of the road race. The 1984 Tour de France Féminin covered about 1,080km of the 4,000km for the men’s race due to strict UCI rules about how far women could ride in stage races. The women’s course followed the men’s, including all the climbs. Martin earned the polka-dot jersey as the Tour’s best climber by winning the 45-mile 12th stage that took riders over two Alps mountain passes. Two stages later, Martin nabbed the race leader’s yellow jersey and held it until the finish in Paris.
Leigh Donovan – Off-Road: Donovan was a champion BMX and mountain bike racer from 1992 to 2001. When she retired from racing in 2001, Donovan was the most decorated U.S. cycling downhill and slalom rider after winning nine National Off-Road Bicycle Association (NORBA) championships and a UCI world title. Leigh was elected to the BMX Hall of Fame in 2013 and the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in 2014. She is the only woman to be elected to both.
In 1995 Leigh won a cycling triple crown by winning the U.S. national slalom championship, the national downhill championship and the UCI Mountain Bike World Championship in downhill – an accomplishment that has never been repeated. She was a 3-time UCI World Championship medalist
Donovan won the 2001 World Cup Dual slalom championship in Vail, CO. In UCI World Cup competition, she earned 5 overall wins and finished on the top three podium in 39 races.
Joe Breeze – Contributor: Joe Breeze was an early pioneer in the development of mountain bikes and is widely considered to be one of its inventors. One of the group of riders in northern California’s Marin County in the 1970s to take balloon tire bicycles to the trails in the hills, he used his frame-building skills to create the first prototype modern mountain bike (Breezer #1) in 1977 and rode it to victory in its first race. Breezer #1 has been displayed at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History.
Joe is a founding member of NORBA (National Off Road Bicycle Association), which later became the mountain bike racing division of USA Cycling. Joe is also a charter member and manager of the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame into which he was inducted in 1988. His industry innovations include the Hite-Rite seat post spring and the Apex disc brake mount as well as development of early lightweight off-road frames utilizing modern tubing.
About the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame
The Hall of Fame has been located in Davis, Calif. since 2010 and it boasts 8,000 square feet of displays and exhibits that tell the story of American cycling history along with a collection of bicycles from the 19th and 20th centuries. For information, visit: www.usbhof.org.
Jeff Pierce – Final stage of the Tour de France winner:
Movistar Team to Wear Fan-Selected Charity Jersey at Strade Bianche
Women’s and men’s outfits sponsored by Telefónica will use a multi-colour jersey, designed by Italian artist Loris Gobbi, together with a special-edition Abus StormChaser helmet on Saturday 1st August in Italy; auction will support Spanish Red Cross and Italy’s Protezione Civile
The Movistar Team will wear on Saturday 1st August, at the first UCI WorldTour event post-pandemic, a Charity Jersey created by its fans. The Strade Bianche, the famous Italian classic with its challenging ‘sterrato’ sections, will see the Blues put on a multi-colour jersey designed by local artist Loris Gobbi, which team partner Alé has implemented on the current kit sported by the Telefónica-backed squad.
Other than the jersey and gloves, the Movistar Team’s women’s and men’s outfit will also wear the kit selected by the social media followers from the Spanish squad (nearly 400 participants; more than 3,000 votes to pick the winner) on its Abus helmet. The StormChaser, the latest creation from the German brand, which the fans will see in the next few races – with a new livery for the team, in a predominant white over blue – will also feature details from the Charity Jersey.
The Movistar Team is also announcing that the jerseys will be made available to the public through an auction of 10 pieces, signed by team members, whose proceeds will go to the Spanish Red Cross. The Telefónica-backed outfit will communicate in the next few days which platform will be used for the auction. The relief effort is entirely focused to help those most struck by the COVID-19 crisis and all people who do their best to support them.
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