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Tour de France 1998 Ireland: 2e etappe Dokter Porte buigt over gevallen Boardman Foto: Cor Vos©1998

EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

An incredibly full and diverse EUROTRASH for your Thursday reading. Alex Dowsett and Chris Boardman fight over helmets – Top Story. MPCC call for resignation of WADA president, AG2R-La Mondiale on Eddy Merckx bikes, Molteni is back in London, Quick-Step Floors wins WorldTour team classification, Lotto Soudal report card, Cavendish, Gaviria and more contract news and Sunweb lose coaches. To finish: Video of the 2018 UCI Cycling Gala in Guilin.

TOP STORY: GB TT Stars Dowsett and Boardman Argue over Helmets
After his crash at the finish of Saturday’s stage of the Tout of Guangxu, Katusha-Alpecin’s Alex Dowsett started a Twitter battle between himself and ex Pro rider, World champion and hour record holder, Chris Boardman.

Tour of Guangxu stage 5 crash:

Dowsett Tweeted after his crash: “My helmet, it’s cracked, it saved my head” and that they should be “compulsory for all cyclists.” In a now deleted Tweet, Dowsett added a photo of his damaged Oakley helmet.

The former British TT champ Tweeted: “My helmet, it’s cracked, it saved my head, thank you @oakleybike! Now let’s chat about helmets. This is a topic that always causes some divided opinions but I’m certainly of the opinion that they should be compulsory for all cyclists, everywhere, all of the time. People like Chris Boardman have said like in places such as Holland where no one wears lids it’s not about wearing a helmet for safety but about infrastructure of the roads, which is a very valid point.” Adding: “I along with a few people in Holland I’m sure have crashed by my own errors without the help of any others road users, human error isn’t it! Rather than wearing a helmet in a car I actually think it’s more akin to wearing a seatbelt.”

As you would expect, this started a Twitter battle of words with Chris Boardman in opposition.

Katusha-Alpecin’s Alex Dowsett in London wearing a helmet, but using his mobile phone:

Chris Boardman responded with two retorts: “Tell me where in the world mandatory helmet use reduces head injury? (Hint: nowhere).”

And: “Tell me what happened in countries where made helmets mandatory? (Hint, it fell dramatically). ”

51 per cent of kids ride to school in the Netherlands. Tell me what their head injury rate is? (Hint, it’s the lowest in the world). Mandating will kill more people by other means than it saves. I researched it for 20 years and use evidence not opinions to understand.”

Dowsett later clarified his feeling: “Helmet post was every bit the can of worms I expected! I read and respected all the replies, positive and negative. I do fully understand there’s a lot more to it, infrastructure, uptake etc, I’m simply pro helmet and this is based off countless stories of them doing their job.”

Boardman crashing out in the Tour yellow jersey wearing a helmet:

MPCC Send Open Letter to WADA Calling for the Resignation of President M. Craig Reedie
After its annual General Assembly held on 24 October 2018 in Paris, the MPCC has decided to send the WADA an open letter, calling for the resignation of its President M. Craig Reedie.

Here is the letter in full:

Open letter to the World Anti-Doping Agency
The Movement for a Credible Cycling (MPCC)’s General Assembly met on this October 24th and adresses an open letter to the World Anti-Doping Agency. In this letter, MPCC highlights the consequences of a situation which hurts the whole world of sport and question the very foundations of the international rules and regulation. Thus, MPCC’s General Assembly calls for the resignation of WADA’s president, Mr. Craig Reedie.

When the World Anti-Doping Code was created in 2004, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) was instructed oversee the compliance to this code. Thus, it releases every year a List of Prohibited Substances and Methods, which is constantly updated following the results of scientific studies. The list applicable to 2019 was released on October 1st.

Tramadol, which is a very powerful synthetic opioid used as an analgesic, made its way into the list of WADA Monitoring Program in 2012. Though, it is still not part of the Prohibited Substances for 2019. The Movement For a Credible Cycling (MPCC) made a formal request to WADA to put Tramadol on the List of Prohibited Substances and Methods as early as 2014. This request has been renewed every year since with a strong emphasis, supported by cycling’s international federation, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).

Under article 4.5 of the World Anti-Doping Code, WADA shall establish this Monitoring Program and thus set and oversee the prevalence of usage of these substances. In 2015, Tramadol was detected in 5.9% of the samples taken in cycling. In 2017, this figure dropped to 4.4%. This level is dropping, but is still higher than in any other endurance sports. These sports are as much concerned about this as cycling. MPCC wishes to see this substance banned in competition for ethic reasons (performance enhancing), but also for the sake of the riders’ safety and health. To leave things as they are could endanger the health of our athletes.

MPCC laments the lack of evolution of the List of Prohibited Substances and Methods year after year, and the update for 2019 is nothing more than the confirmation of this trend.

Since its creation in 2004, The World Anti-Doping Code has been aiming at the standardization of the anti-doping rules and sanction across all sports and all countries in the world. As of today, more than 660 sport organization commit to the Code. Nevertheless, MPCC is not satisfied with how the Code is executed depending of the sports. The whereabouts rules, for example, are not applied in the same way for all the sports: collective sports, especially, benefit from a specific treatment as they can only be controlled during collective trainings, and not on an individual level, out of these slots.

We already highlighted a differential treatment about the Puerto Case since 2006. WADA failed in how it handled this case: MPCC regards this as a debacle for the World Anti-Doping Agency.

About Chris Froome’s case and specifically how that handled by WADA : MPCC laments the way sanctions are not applied equally and procedures are not followed equally, which is devastating for the credibility of the sport, for WADA itself, and thus is devastating for the confidence which athletes ought to have in the world’s anti-doping agency and its independence and integrity.

The World Anti-Doping Code states that it “is not consistent with therapeutic use of the substance and will be considered as an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) unless the Athlete proves, through a controlled pharmacokinetic study, that the abnormal result was the consequence of a therapeutic dose (by inhalation) up to the maximum dose indicated above”.

Though, in the press release following its decision, WADA admits that a CPKS would not have been practicable. The handling of Chris Froome’s case showed clearly how WADA was in contradiction with its own rules. Disrepute was brought upon the fight against doping, hurting cycling in a big way and spread confusion among the public and only achieved one thing : fueling suspicion around a case that was already at the center of the media attention.

On last September 20th, WADA announced the decision of its Board to reinstate the Russian Anti- Doping Agency (RUSADA), under a certain number of conditions. RUSADA was suspended since November 2015. This reinstatement relied upon two conditions: the acceptance of the conclusions of the McLaren Report on the reality of institutional doping on the one hand, and granting access to Moscow’s anti-doping labs on the other. These two conditions have not been met.
Several statements were made, rising up against this decision:

‘Such a step would seriously damage the credibility that the world anti-doping system had just begun to win back’

French Anti-Doping Agency(AFLD)
Press release following RUSADA reinstatement.

‘I am afraid that by opting for the easiest way out, it will ultimately hurt WADA in the future. We have to stand up for athletes all around the world.’

Linda Helleland
WADA’s Vice President, voted against the reinstatement of RUSADA.

‘This bewildering and inexplicable decision is a devastating blow to the world’s clean athletes.’

Travis Tygart
American Anti-Doping Agency (USADA)’s President

‘It is clear that given the circumstances (…), any decision by WADA to reinstate RUSADA would be a catastrophe for Olympic sport ideals, the fight against doping and the protection of clean athletes’

Grigory Rodchenkov
Former Moscow lab director.

MPCC refuses to be complicit in WADA’s dubious decisions.

MPCC reminds WADA that its primary role is to uphold clean athletes.

MPCC laments WADA’S lack of answers regarding the movement’s requests of the last 10 years, especially about corticoids, with are a very important topic.

MPCC calls for WADA to show more independence.

MPCC highlights the consequences of a situation which hurts the whole world of sport and question the very foundations of the international rules and regulation. Thus, MPCC’s General Assembly calls for the resignation of WADA’s president, Mr. Craig Reedie.

The MPCC asks the organizers, international or national associations, athletes, national anti-doping agencies and all the signatories of the code, to give voice and support our action.

MPCC invites all the stakeholders to join forces with all of those who have already raised their voices in this direction.

451 members of MPCC:
7 World Tours teams – 23 Pro Continental teams – 9 Continental teams – 6 UCI Women teams – 264 Riders – 98 Staff members – 6 Agents – 9 Federation members – 9 Organization members – 9 Sponsor members – 14 Members sympathizing with us.

AG2R La Mondiale Riding Eddy Merckx Bikes Until 2020
The AG2R La Mondiale team will compete during the 2019 and 2020 seasons on Eddy Merckx bikes. Vincent Lavenu, general manager of the AG2R La Mondiale team, and Jochim Aerts, CEO and owner of Belgian Cycling Factory, have agreed to a two-year contract, with the option of a two-year extension.

Vincent Lavenu: “We are proud to partner up for two seasons with Eddy Merckx bikes. Throughout our discussions, I appreciated the professionalism and the mindset of the management team, which is committed to providing our team with high-performance equipment.
Our two companies are driven by common values as well as the search for performance, and we are confident that the relationship will be strong and fruitful. We will have access to very high-end equipment, which is exactly what we are looking for in order to achieve the highest sporting goals when racing all over the world. Personally, I am happy to see the name of Eddy Merckx, one of my childhood idols, appear on the jerseys and bikes of our team. We thank Factor for the quality of the material that that brand has provided us for the past two seasons, and we wish them great commercial and sporting success in the future.”

Jochim Aerts, CEO of Belgian Cycling Factory: “It’s really marvelous news for our bike brand. Timing couldn’t be better either. Next year, the Tour de France will start in Brussels, with Eddy Merckx himself as the main guest. It will be 50 years ago Eddy has won his first Tour de France. The riders of AG2R La Mondiale will be the first to race with the 525, our new top-of-the line bike. The team is giving us the great opportunity to show to the entire world our Merckx bikes are once again at a world-class level. Without compromising our ‘Modern Heritage’ identity! And, take a look at the bike. The minimalistic lifestyle design of the AG2R La Mondiale team bike is already the perfect example.”

Eddy Merckx: “I’m proud to have a UCI WorldTour team riding Eddy Merckx bikes at the Tour de France next year as a perfect tribute to the 50th anniversary of my first Tour victory.”

More about Eddy Merckx 525
The new 525 is going to be the new flagship model of the Eddy Merckx collection. The bike will have the same distinctive, minimalistic artwork with striking, lifestyle colors, just as the other Merckx bikes. “The 525 weighs 6,8kg . We’ve managed to create a very light bike and our tests have shown the new 525 is performing brilliantly in the wind tunnel as well,” tells Toon Wils, R&D engineer Belgian Cycling Factory.

Eddy Merckx bikes is completely ready for a new future within the Belgian Cycling Factory. The plan is to expertly combine the unique Eddy Merckx bike design with BCF’s rich, proven history of technological know-how. The unparalleled career of Eddy Merckx is the source of inspiration for the Eddy Merckx bikes brand. It is not only his achievements as the best cyclist of all time that are inspiring, but also his career as a successful race bike creator.

In Brief:
The components of Eddy Merckx 525
Wheels: MAVIC
Pedals : LOOK
Kit stem-handlebar : DEDA
Crank – power meter : ROTOR
Chain : KMC
Cycling computer : LEZYNE
Bottle cages: ELITE

The new 525 will be in-store available at the start of the Tour de France 2019.
More news will appear on: www.eddymerckx.com

Molteni Brand Back on Track in London Launching a Foundation to Aid Former Riders in Need
The family bearing the name of Eddy Merckx legendary team undertakes a charity project to support unlucky heroes of cycling.

Mario Molteni (middle) with Adam Blythe (left) and Jon Dibben (right), the pair that took back the mythical Molteni jersey on track at the 6 Days of London

Why London
An imaginary time machine wows the cycling fans as the iconic Molteni brand suddenly returns on the scene over forty years later. This happens at Queen Elisabeth Olympic Park where the Six Days of London starts, with two pairs restoring the memory of the Italian food company’s brand over the suede-blue historical jersey that many champions brought to victory for 18 years (from 1958 to 1976) – one above the rest, Eddy Merckx.

The choice to revive the past on this occasion was not random, considering the wide international exposure of the Six Days of London, taking place in the most successful cycling Country of the last decade. The velodrome setting is also significant, as the Molteni team’s superstars were used to ride on track in winter time, tallying more victories on the way to the road season.

Solidarity’s goal
The project developed in close cooperation with Six Days of London’s organizers has no commercial purposes: the Molteni brand is off the grid from many years, and this return will not lead to any new sponsoring in sports on behalf of the Molteni family, whose unique goal is to remember Ambrogio Molteni and his commitment in cycling by unveiling here in London a big charity initiative.

Indeed, the Molteni family has started procedures to establish a permanent Foundation in the name of Ambrogio Molteni.

Mario and Pierangela Molteni, son and daughter of the team’s founder, were in London to announce the new project, whose official start up will happen in early 2019.

Jon Dibben and Adam Blythe on the stage of the 6 Days of London with the Molteni jersey

Why doing a Foundation
The Foundation aims to bring a real help to former professional cyclists struggling because of misfortunes, victims of disabling injuries or for different troubles, while also supporting prospects whose careers were spoiled by serious crashes will be in the Foundation’s focus.

The London’s fixture stages the launch of the new initiative that will take shape with charity and fund-raising actions to bring a moral and financial relief to the people in distress.

“Sad stories of athletes down of luck once their career is over are pretty common” – Mario Molteni explains – “regardless of the reason why; cycling is not an exception, even considering the hard consequences of crashes during races or training sometimes. Our family’s name has been relevant in cycling and we think our father would appreciate this strong will to help and support the less fortunate ones on bike.”

The colors of myth
Dusting off Molteni brand and team’s corporate identity while keeping the graphic and colors unchanged give an historical meaning to what the family will pursue in cycling.

That’s why the Molteni brand shows at the Six Days of London over the Madison World Champions Roger Kluge and Theo Reinhardt rainbow jerseys, while the Brit pairing made by Adam Blythe and Jon Dibben wears the glorious Molteni kit with the unmistakable suede color that Ambrogio Molteni chose by taking the cue from his company’s trucks.

The cooperation between the Molteni family and British organizers is also presented to the public in London by showing the team’s main successes and highlights.

A special gift by Mario Molteni to Mark Cavendish: the iconic suede-blue jersey

Molteni is widely seen as the very first international top team in post-war professional cycling due to the longstanding brand exposure on the riders outfit (18 years, from 1958 to 1976) and the unequalled number of victories, 663.

Molteni colors accomplished their supremacy in every kind of competition, considering the long Eddy Merckx domination – the Belgian dressed the Molteni shirt for six seasons, from 1971 to 1976, claiming 246 wins only he – besides many other top guns such as Rudy Altig, Gianni Motta, Michele Dancelli, Marino Basso.

A quick figures recap includes:
• 8 Grand Tours victories (4 Giro d’Italia, 3 Tour de France and 1 Vuelta a España) with 102 stage wins overall
• 23 national championships
• 15 “Monument” classics (3 Giro di Lombardia, 5 Milano-Sanremo, 5 Liege-Bastogne-Liege, 1 Paris-Roubaix, 1 Tour of Flanders)
• 3 Road World Championships (Altig 1966, Merckx 1971 and 1974)
• 1 hour record (Merckx 1972)

All in all, 124 riders wore the Molteni jersey throughout the whole 18-season period, 77 of whom were Italians.

Adam Blythe celebrates the win in the Derny race with the Molteni jersey

The World Champions Roger Kluge and Theo Reinhardt in action in the Madison race with the Molteni jersey

Quick-Step Floors wins World Tour Team Classification
The prestigious award was the cherry on the top of what has been a phenomenal year.

The 2018 season couldn’t have started any better, with new signing Elia Viviani opening the account by taking a stage victory at the Tour Down Under, in January. Little did the Italian know 17 more wins – including a GC one, seven Grand Tour stages and the prized National Title – would follow over the next eight months, making him the most successful rider of the year.

Viviani was one of the 15 different Quick-Step Floors riders to inscribe their name on the long list of successes which took our team to the top of the victory standings for the seventh consecutive year, a significant milestone for the outfit run by Patrick Lefevere, which since its inception in 2003 has amassed close to 700 UCI wins.

As the season progressed, The Wolfpack continued to shine, howling their way to other outstanding victories; among the squad’s high points were the Classics (E3 Harelbeke, Dwars door Vlaanderen, Ronde van Vlaanderen, Flèche Wallonne, Liège–Bastogne–Liège, Clasica San Sebastian, Cyclassics Hamburg), a handful of National Championships titles, two distinctive jerseys and 13 stages at the Grand Tours and the World Team Time Trial Championships for a record fourth time.

When the curtain came down last week at the Tour of Guangxi, Quick-Step Floors had scored 73 victories in 22 different countries across five continents. Of these wins, 37 were nabbed on the World Tour and saw our team beat the previous record, set in 2017. A superb consistency and a startling run of results throughout a long and intense year, capped off at the UCI Gala in Guilin, where Quick-Step Floors were crowned World Tour Champions.

“It’s truly extraordinary what we have achieved in 2018 and the whole squad is part of this success. It’s a fantastic proof of what you can accomplish through team spirit, hard work and dedication from everybody involved and an unstoppable motivation to win cycling races. It’s very much a once in a lifetime season”, a happy Patrick Lefevere said. “Topping the UCI World Tour Team Classification for the first time in the history of Quick-Step Floors with a total of over 13,000 points and such a hefty advantage is a culmination of all these things I have just mentioned and an achievement that gives me great pride.”

25 Victories for the WorldTour Team in 2018
Now the final racing kilometers have been covered at the Tour of Guangxi, the 2018 season has come to an end for Lotto Soudal. The WorldTour team gathered 25 victories this year. An overview.

Lotto Soudal could celebrate early, thanks to two stage wins of André Greipel at the Tour Down Under. The German sprinter won the first and last stage in Australia. After he had been out of competition for several weeks due to a crash in Milan-Sanremo, Greipel made a successful comeback at 4 Jours de Dunkerque, where he also won two stages. On stage five Greipel didn’t win a sprint, but he won from a breakaway! It was his second solo victory ever. Next, the former German national champion won two stages in the Belgium Tour and also at the Tour of Britain in September Greipel claimed two stage wins.

On March 3 Tiesj Benoot won Strade Bianche in an impressive manner. He finished solo on Il Campo in Siena at the end of a wet and muddy edition of this young Classic.

Tim Wellens was responsible for seven of the 25 Lotto Soudal victories. After winning one of the Trofeo’s of the Challenge Mallorca, he won a stage and the GC of the Ruta del Sol a few weeks later. In spring, Tim Wellens conquered the highest podium spot at the Brabantse Pijl. Tiesj Benoot joined him on stage that day as third. In May, Tim Wellens sprinted uphill to victory on the fourth Giro stage, his second stage win ever in this Grand Tour. In July, Wellens triumphed at Tour de Wallonie, claiming a stage win and the overall classification. Jens Debusschere was the fastest in the fifth stage of the Tour de Wallonie.

As mentioned earlier, André Greipel won twice for Lotto Soudal at the Belgium Tour, but also Jelle Vanendert won one of the five stages. Vanendert – who finished third at Flèche Wallonne one month before – was the best in the Ardennes stage, his second pro victory after winning a Tour stage in 2011. Jens Keukeleire completed the team’s success by winning the GC of the Belgium Tour. While his teammates won in the team’s home country, neo-pro Bjorg Lambrecht took his first pro win in Norway, as he won the third stage of Tour des Fjords.

The last Lotto Soudal victory of 2018 was conquered by Jelle Wallays, who successfully finished off an early breakaway on the eighteenth Vuelta stage. It was the second win of the season for the Belgian rider, after winning the sixth stage of the Vuelta a San Juan in January. Not only Wallays delivered success at the Vuelta; Thomas De Gendt won the KOM classification. De Gendt couldn’t win a stage at the Vuelta, but he did win a stage at the Volta a Catalunya and Tour de Romandie.

Lotto Soudal’s WorldTour team also has a Belgian national champion in the team since this summer. Victor Campenaerts was the fastest at the Belgian Time Trial Championship. In August he prolonged his European time trial title. At the Worlds in Innsbruck Campenaerts set the third time in the time trial, conquering a bronze medal. Also his Lotto Soudal teammate Bjorg Lambrecht could take a medal home. He got second in the U23 road race.

The 25 victories:
1. Tour Down Under Stage 1 (2.UWT) – André Greipel
2. Tour Down Under Stage 6 (2.UWT) – André Greipel
3. Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana (1.1) – Tim Wellens
4. Vuelta a San Juan Stage 6 (2.1) – Jelle Wallays
5. Ruta del Sol Stage 4 (2.HC) – Tim Wellens
6. Ruta del Sol GC (2.HC) – Tim Wellens
7. Strade Bianche (1.UWT) – Tiesj Benoot
8. Volta a Catalunya Stage 3 (2.UWT) – Thomas De Gendt
9. De Brabantse Pijl (1.HC) – Tim Wellens
10. Tour de Romandie Stage 2 (2.UWT) – Thomas De Gendt
11. Giro d’Italia Stage 4 (2.UWT) – Tim Wellens
12. 4 Jours de Dunkerque Stage 2 (2.HC) – André Greipel
13. 4 Jours de Dunkerque Stage 5 (2.HC) – André Greipel
14. Baloise Belgium Tour Stage 1 (2.HC) – André Greipel
15. Baloise Belgium Tour Stage 2 (2.HC) – André Greipel
16. Tour des Fjords Stage 3 (2.HC) – Bjorg Lambrecht
17. Baloise Belgium Tour Stage 4 (2.HC) – Jelle Vanendert
18. Baloise Belgium Tour GC (2.HC) – Jens Keukeleire
19. Belgian Time Trial Championship – Victor Campenaerts
20. Tour de Wallonie Stage 2 (2.HC) – Tim Wellens
21. Tour de Wallonie Stage 5 (2.HC) – Jens Debusschere
22. Tour de Wallonie GC (2.HC) – Tim Wellens
23. Tour of Britain Stage 1 (2.HC) – André Greipel
24. Tour of Britain Stage 4 (2.HC) – André Greipel
25. Vuelta a España Stage 18 (2.UWT) – Jelle Wallays

8 wins for André Greipel in 2018 for Lotto Soudal:
Lyndoch - Australia - wielrennen - cycling - cyclisme - radsport - Andre GREIPEL (Germany / Team Lotto Soudal) pictured during 20th Santos Tour Down Under (2.UWT) stage -1 from Port Adelaide to Lyndoch (145KM) - photo LB/RB/Cor Vos © 2018

Fernando Gaviria Joins UAE Team Emirates on a Three-Year Deal
UAE Team Emirates welcomes 24-year-old Colombian cyclist Fernando Gaviria. He joins the project of President Matar, putting his name on a three-year deal that starts with him joining the team at a training camp in the United Arab Emirates from tomorrow through October 30.

Gaviria, who became professional in the second part of the 2015 season, won 34 times in his career, including three stages and a day in the yellow jersey at the 2018 Tour de France and four stages and the points jersey at the 2017 Giro d’Italia, and the 2016 Paris-Tours.

“I change team after having always raced in the same group, which has given me the possibility to make the next jump to the highest level,” Gaviria said. “With the new jersey, I’m not going to hide my desires and I want the biggest wins. I’m happy to be able to race with my countrymen Henao, Muñoz and Molano. Thanks to the UAE Team Emirates for the faith it put in me.”

Fernando Gaviria in yellow:

Cavendish Steps Up for Team Dimension Data
Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka is delighted to announce that we have agreed with sprint legend Mark Cavendish to extend his contract as part of an exciting new step for our team.

Widely acknowledged to be the sport’s greatest ever sprinter, the next phase of his career will additionally see him take on a new and exciting leadership role within the team as part of a newly formed Supervisory Board.

“After spending my last three years with Dimension Data I’m delighted to extend my contract, stay with the team that I love and people that I hold dearest to me in the sport. It’s also an honor to be part of a Supervisory Board that will work together to continue the growth of the team in cycling.”

While for Team Principal, Douglas Ryder, Cavendish staying is an important moment in the future of the team. “Mark has made a significant impact in this team since joining us in 2016 – who’ll ever forget his four Tour de France stage wins to go with the yellow jersey as well as the green – and I am thrilled that he has agreed to continue with us and take on additional leadership responsibilities.

“As a team we believe in dreams and doing significant things both on and off the bike; and so we are extremely excited as to what 2019 and beyond will bring in terms of realizing our full potential.

“Mark has a huge amount of experience which we will look forward to harnessing in all spheres as we continue to move forwards in the sport.”

Cavendish’s palmarès speaks for itself: 30 stage victories at the Tour de France, 15 wins at the Giro d’Italia and three at the Vuelta a España, along with a World Championship crown both on the road and multiple on the track, an Olympic track cycling medal as well as a national road championship title; but it’s his increased leadership role together with winning races, that provides a new combined challenge.

The way he has bounced back from numerous set-backs has seen his hunger for future success only intensify and continues to drive his own ambitions, which are directly aligned with our team motto of “Better Together”.

“It’s no secret that both 2017 and 2018 have been very difficult years for me physically due to injury and illness.

“The physical fatigue suffered as a result of the Epstein-Barr is terrible but the most difficult part was the impact on my job which is my life and passion; not being able to do that is very difficult to handle and it takes a mental toll on you.”

It’s this drive that also speaks to the team’s higher purpose and its support for the Qhubeka charity which continues to change lives and, like Cavendish, endeavors to leave a lasting legacy.

“Growing up all I ever wanted was to ride my bike – I loved riding my bike – and so not being able to do it and not being able to succeed, which is the only thing that I know, well it’s incredible as you realize then just how tough it is when things don’t go right.

“In my 12 years as a professional with the teams that I’ve been in I’m proud to say that I’ve made some history within the sport and one thing that matters to me is leaving a legacy, and not just on the sporting side. The Tour de France record is massively important to me but equally is what we can give back by using the status we have within the growth of cycling, it’s hugely significant.

“The main reason that I joined Team Dimension Data in the first place is the Qhubeka charity and that’s something that grows within my heart every day. To be able to put underprivileged kids in Africa on bicycles is something that sounds incredible but it’s when you really see it, it really grows on you. You see the impact that it has on a kid, whether it’s being able to go to school or whether they just take the bike out and play with it, or whether it’s something that can be used for the family, it’s truly eye-opening. Something that I really look forward to every year is going to handover bicycles to a school.”

His role will also see him as a part of a number of structural changes within the team from 2019 including the signing of nine new recruits to the rider roster.

This new, streamlined focus is to match the increased level of competition on the World Tour by ensuring the team’s future sustainability, together with the support of our partners, while at the same time being able to provide a platform for elite African cycling talent to perform at the highest level.

“Partners and suppliers are incredibly important to me and I’m incredibly excited about our partners for next year and beyond. I’m proud that I’ve grown to know Dimension Data as a company over the past three years and will be taking a more active role closer to them in this next year. What Dimension Data do not just in cycling but outside of it is ground-breaking. To see the difference to how cycling can be viewed, particularly the Tour de France, and the technologies that can be used within cycling is something that’s exciting to work with and continues to develop.”

The team’s Head of Performance, Rolf Aldag, is also looking forward to continuing his long-standing working relationship with Cavendish.

“Mark needs to fight back from a difficult year, with crashes and health issues, but we believe that he can do this and return to old strength, if he is fully recovered. He has an outstanding palmarès already and we will support him to add some more great results. But Mark also gets more and more involved with our technology partners, helping them to make the best products. He shows some great skills in this realm and will continue to develop those relationships, so all our riders can benefit from his input and experience.”

Finally for Cavendish, his incredible achievement of 30 stage wins at the Tour de France continues to be one of the biggest talking points in the sport. This goal is clearly aligned with one of the key pillars of the team’s ‘Vision 2020’ campaign and for him, despite the recent setbacks, nothing has changed in terms of his objective.

“The Tour de France record, it’s no secret that it’s the one goal that I have left in cycling. After winning 30 stages in my career another four doesn’t seem that much but I’ve always been the first one to say that winning one stage of the Tour de France is something that makes a rider’s career, so I know how difficult it could be to win another four; but I’m never going to stop trying.

“I firmly believe that I will get it and I believe with the best people around me that I have the best chance of getting it. The day that I don’t believe I can challenge to get that record is the day that I probably stop riding my bike.”

“It seems that I’ve always made a career out of comebacks and I’m sure that 2019 is going to be no different after the couple of tough years with illness. I know that I’m on the right track to come back and dominate in the sport again.”

Mark Cavendish:

Stefan Denifl Returns to the WorldTour with CCC Team
Austrian rider Stefan Denifl will return to the WorldTour in 2019 as the latest rider to sign with CCC Team, the continuation of Continuum Sports.

Denifl, who raced with Aqua Blue Sport in 2017 and 2018, is known for his memorable solo stage win on stage 17 of the 2017 Vuelta a España.

“Stefan Denifl is great addition to CCC Team so it is a pleasure to welcome him to the team in 2019. Stefan had a breakthrough year in 2017 with a stage win at the Vuelta a España and overall win at the Tour of Austria and we believe he can reach his potential with CCC Team. Stefan has showed that he is capable of winning races and will be a valuable teammate at stage races and Grand Tours,” General Manager Jim Ochowicz said.

“Stefan brings a wealth of experience to the team and will be an asset at the Ardennes classics and the hillier Monuments, Milan – San Remo and Il Lombardia. We are looking forward to seeing what Stefan can do next year and we are excited to welcome the first rider from Austria, which is a key market for CCC, to the team.”

Denifl’s career spans 13 seasons, during which time he has lined up at four Grand Tours, twice at the Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España respectively, and 12 Monuments.

The 31-year-old is grateful for the opportunity to join CCC Team after the folding of Aqua Blue Sport.

“The end of Aqua Blue Sport was a big blow for all of us. I was under contract until the end of 2019 so I wasn’t talking to any teams. The rider market that late in the season is always complicated so I am very happy to sign with CCC Team. When looking at the teams with openings, it was clear that CCC Team was my first choice. It is an international squad with strong riders, good staff and a solid structure in place, as well as an impressive new sponsor on board, and top material. There is not much more you can wish for as a rider,” Denifl explained.

“I want to get back to my 2017 level where I was able to win a race here and there. Beside that, I am looking forward to racing as a team and making our fans and sponsors proud. Although my race program isn’t yet determined, the Giro d’Italia would be really cool and it is my dream to race the Tour de France one day. Racing at the WorldTour level means there are so many good racing opportunities so I am excited to return to this level.”

In keeping with team policy, no other details of the contract were released.

Stefan Denifl – Vuelta a España’17 stage 17:

Two UAE Contract Renewals: Rui Costa & Rory Sutherland
Much experience and the class of the former world champion confirmed in UAE Team Emirates.

The two contract renewals add to the robust UAE Team Emirates structure for the 2019 season. Rui Costa and Rory Sutherland (photos Bettini) reached an agreement with the team to continue their experience with the WorldTour team from the United Arab Emirates.

The Portuguese world champion from the 2013 Worlds, Rui Costa, suffered this season due to knee problems that are now all cleared by the medical team. He added another season to the already five-year run with the team.

Australian Rory Sutherland, 36 years old, will be reaching his 17th season. This year, he rode the Tour de France and helped the team to two stage wins, one with Dan Martin and one with Alexander Kristoff. Sutherland also signed for one year.

Costa and Sutherland, set for 2019:

Bernhard Eisel Extends his Deal with Team Dimension Data
Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka is delighted to announce that Bernhard Eisel has agreed a contract extension to continue his successful relationship with our team.

The 37-year old will build on the senior leadership role he has and will be a key factor in integrating both our current squad and the host of new riders joining in 2019.

“I am extremely happy that I can do another year with Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka; and while I always perhaps dreamed of retiring with an American team and spending my final days in Malibu, now I’ll probably retire in Camps Bay after 2019,” joked Eisel.

2018 was a very tough year for the Austrian as he suffered a major head injury in a crash during Tirreno-Adriatico which eventually saw him undergo brain surgery for a subdural haematoma ruling him out for a significant part of the season.

After making a slow recovery he returned to racing in August and concluded his season at the recently completed Gree-Tour of Guangxi.

“I’m looking forward to the new season. This year obviously wasn’t perfect and I had my ups and a lot of downs with injury but I’m super-happy that I’m back. That’s also a key reason in why I’ve decided to stay on; I had so much freedom from the team who supported me with everything that I needed with my injury. They gave me all the time that I required to come back, there was never a push from them. I basically didn’t race for five months this year and the team never complained about that.”

For team principal Douglas Ryder being able to retain Eisel is a crucial move. One of the most widely respected members of the peloton and also a road representative on the UCI’s Athletes’ Commission, his presence and leadership is invaluable both internally and externally.

“Bernie has one of those voices that lets everyone know that he’s around. He’s one of the great characters of the sport and has an unmistakable aura about him but, most importantly, he simply is an outstanding rider who leads by example in every way.

“As our road captain he’s become a major figure in our organization in every sense making his presence felt with staff and riders, being exceptional in interacting with all of our valued partners as well as the media and is a firm fan favorite too.

“Not only that, but his commitment to the Qhubeka charity ever since joining us in 2016 has been exemplary and he’s among the first to get involved whenever new campaigns are launched or bikes are being distributed.

“We are thrilled that his future lies is with us to continue and build on our wonderful partnership.”

While for Eisel the decision to stay on was a simple one. “When I spoke to Doug about renewing my contract for one more year it was an easy discussion. I’m really, really thankful that even after being a pro for 18 years it was definitely one of my easiest talks with a team owner about a new contract, so that also shows the character of Douglas.”

“I wasn’t done with cycling after the crash this year so I want to have one really good season before I think about retirement for good, although I think in my head I’d already retired three times this year!

“The injury was heavy but I made a full recovery so I want to complete one more year of racing from January until October and let’s hope that we win a lot of bike races in 2019.”

Head of Performance Rolf Aldag hailed the impact that Eisel has on the team. “Bernie is more than just a rider on this team. His tactical skills in the races give our sport directors an extra pair of eyes and ears in the peloton and lead us to make better decisions. He is a mentor for our young riders, sharing all his experience and due to the respect he earned over the last 18 years in the peloton, he can move in the bunch more freely to place our riders into the perfect positions in critical moments.”

The Qhubeka charity has become a cornerstone of Eisel’s relationship with the team and as someone who spends large portions of his time with his family in South Africa he’s set lofty goals for 2019. “We’ve achieved our goal of 5000 bikes this year already, which was a big one, and with even greater success in 2019 who knows, perhaps we can push that towards the 10,000 bike mark.

“That would probably be my achievement of the year, a defining moment, if we could manage to get Qhubeka above 10,000 bikes a year.”

Rolf Aldag with Bernhard Eisel:

Pawel Bernas to Target Classics Development With CCC Team
Pawel Bernas will focus on developing as a classics rider when he makes his WorldTour debut with CCC Team in 2019, becoming the latest rider to make the transition from CCC Sprandi Polkowice.

Bernas showed his potential when he was in the breakaway and went on to finish second at the inaugural Great War Remembrance Race in August this year.

“Pawel Bernas is the latest addition to our classics team for 2019, when we become CCC Team, and will play a key role in supporting Greg Van Avermaet in the spring. Pawel already has experience at some of the smaller spring classics and his result at the Great War Remembrance Race was a sign of what he can do, so we are excited to welcome him to the team,” General Manager Jim Ochowicz said.

“This is a unique opportunity for Pawel to make his debut with a WorldTour team that has a Polish title sponsor and as our main focus of the 2019 season will be the classics, it is a great fit for him. Under our guidance, we hope Pawel will gain more experience and develop further not just in the classics, but also stage races too.”

Pawel Bernas is thankful for the opportunity to step up to the WorldTour level. “This is absolutely the biggest step in my career so I can’t really describe just how excited I am. Joining one of the best teams in the world was always my top goal and achieving this wouldn’t be possible without the support of my family and friends, my coach, sport directors, colleagues and staff from CCC Sprandi Polkowice, and also my previous teams, so I’d like to thank them a lot for helping to make this happen,” Bernas said.

“I always believed that classics were my type of races but I needed that one good result that would prove this, so my result at the Great War Remembrance Race was definitely that self confidence boost that I needed. I’d love to focus on one-day races next season but I also want to become a solid part of the team during stage races as well. My main goal and ambition is to develop and show my potential during the season and stay racing at the WorldTour level. It would be amazing to do my first Grand Tour and Monument and this will show that everything is going in the right direction. If I can have a chance to take an opportunity, like at the Great War Remembrance Race, then this would be incredibly motivational.”

In keeping with team policy, no other details of the contract were released.

Pawel Bernas:

Emmanuel Morin to ride for Cofidis until 2020
Cofidis Solutions Crédits has offered a neo-professional contract to Emmanuel Morin for the next two years. Trainee from 1 August in the northern formation, the Nantais, now living in Bordeaux, managed to convince its leaders to offer him his chance in an ambitious team, dynamic surfing the wave of a successful season with now a staff increased to 26 riders.
Cycling just four years ago, the 23-year-old newcomer (born March 13, 1995) explained his joy after the signing of the official document. “Frankly, I still have trouble realizing what’s happening to me. Everything went very fast since my late beginnings in this sport where I found my way. The sacrifices made have paid off and I cannot wait for our first internship. So much it is true that I have integrated very well since my first race disputed on August 5 at La Polynormande. Then after the second event, I took the breakaway and then I started to board to help Nicolas Edet to win a stage and, as a bonus, the General Tour of Limousin. The guys welcomed me with open arms and I am sure that I will progress further in these next seasons to their contact. With the prime quality of being a puncher, there will definitely be work for my little one right from the start of the races.”

For his part, Cédric Vasseur, the general manager of Cofidis Solutions Crédits, is delighted to be able to give the opportunity to a hope of French cycling in the professional peloton. “It is one of the primary missions of Cofidis Solutions Crédits to discover young talents and offer them the opportunity to assert themselves during their two years of learning. Emmanuel Morin took advantage of the opportunity offered during his internship started on August 1st. He gave us full satisfaction and fulfilled his role brilliantly during the Tour du Limousin won by Nicolas Edet. He has a very interesting profile. His late arrival in cycling and his physical abilities should allow him to meet the challenge. We are happy to welcome him and allow him to flourish throughout his two years of contract. He will have the opportunity to test himself throughout this period on different types of terrain.”

Emmanuel Morin received his first jersey from Cédric Vasseur, manager of the Cofidis team:

Swift returns to Team Sky
Ben Swift will return to Team Sky for the 2019 season.

Having spent the last two years at UAE Team Emirates, Swift is back in Team Sky colors with a key role to play in 2019.

Twice a podium finisher at Milan-San Remo, the 30 year old also finished fifth in the World Championship road race last season in Norway.

With the team set to celebrate its 10th season of racing in 2019, Swift is excited to return to Team Sky, commenting: “It’s a great feeling to be re-joining Team Sky.

“Obviously I know the ins and outs of the team. I feel really comfortable here and it’s a place I’ve grown as a rider.

“There will be no teething troubles and I’ll be straight back in. I’m hoping that it will feel like I’ve never been away.”

Swift is well-aware of his responsibilities off the bike, as well as on it, in his second spell with the team, adding: “I’ve still got ambitions and aims for my own career, but I’m also really looking forward to going in and working with the young guys a little bit too. There’s an incredibly talented crop of young riders coming through and I’ve got a lot of experience now that I can lend them.

“On the bike, I feel I’ve also got the ability to put a bit back into the sport as a useful all-rounder for the team. I want to be someone who can do a job and take their opportunity when it comes around.”

Team Sky Performance Manager Rod Ellingworth added: “Ben has got a crucial role to play next season. He’s not only a fine rider in his own right, but he’s also a superb role-model for the younger riders on the team to learn from, as we look to bring through the next generation at Team Sky.

“In performance terms, he sits right in the middle of the team and he’s such a great team player. His attitude and professionalism sits perfectly in our team. He’s easy to work with and we can use him as a good example – he sets high standards and that’s what we’re about.

“He’s at that age now where he can start to pass some of his experience to the younger guys in the team. We’ve invested a lot now in some young guys and we need a few of the core older riders to pass their knowledge on and show them the Team Sky way of racing. We know Ben will do that.

“It’s great to welcome Swifty back to the team going into our tenth year.”

Ben Swift back in 2016:
Vendôme - France - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Ben Swift (GBR / Team Sky) pictured during 74th edition of Paris - Nice - stage 1 - Condé-sur-Vesgre to Vendôme - 198km - photo VK/PN/Cor Vos © 2016

Peter Stetina renews with Trek-Segafredo
Waterloo, Wisconsin – As Trek-Segafredo gathers for their October Camp at Trek Headquarters in Waterloo (WI) today, they take pleasure in announcing that American rider, Peter Stetina, 31, has extended his contract for one year.

All returning riders are currently visiting the Trek HQ where they were presented a factory tour and will undertake a bike and clothing fit for the 2019 season. Amongst them was an elated Peter Stetina, who was happy to confirm he has renewed his contract with Trek-Segafredo through 2019.

Stetina: “I am ecstatic to continue with the Trek family. They stood by me in a period of difficulty. Trek-Segafredo still believes in me and that is inspiring. I aim to take a nice offseason, totally reset my body and mind, and return to the level I have shown in the past. 2019 will be about returning to basics and enjoying the races: I want to help our leaders in the biggest mountain passes and also take my chance on a few climbs when the opportunity presents itself.”

Luca Guercilena, General Manager Trek-Segafredo: “Pete has showed a good end of the season, which confirmed his skills and value to the team as a strong helper in the climbing races. We are confident that in 2019 he will keep going at the same level and like always show his passion for cycling in general and for the American races in particular.”

Peter Stetina:

Taylor Phinney Extends with EF Pro Cycling for 2019
Taylor Phinney has re-signed with EF Pro Cycling for the 2019 season. The American had a great Spring Classics season finishing 8th at Paris-Roubaix, a race he has always had a huge admiration of.

“I think I always had a strong passion towards Paris-Roubaix, there’s just something about that race, there’s a level of drama it has that doesn’t exist in any other race on the calendar. It was always the race that I looked forward to watching before I started racing it.”

This will be Phinney’s third season with EF Pro Cycling having moved from BMC Racing Team at the beginning of 2017, after having raced six seasons with them. When asked about Phinney re-signing with the team for 2019 here’s what EF Pro Cycling CEO Jonathan Vaughters had to say:

“Taylor. I don’t even know where to start! Obviously he’s a talented bike racer with a depth of ability that’s uncommon, even at this level. We saw that at Paris-Roubaix this year. He’s clearly capable of great things, and he’s a very steady rider to have at a Grand Tour. He comes alive off the bike, too. His art, his point of view, his constant desire to wander. I like that about him, and I think as we expand our vision of what this team is moving forward he certainly fits into that really well.”

Phinney is highly motivated about the year ahead and being part of the team: “I mean I love it, there’s no other team that I could envision myself racing for in the professional peloton. I feel like I can be honest with everyone around me and myself and there’s not a ton of expectations thrown on you, on what you need to be and what you need to look like, and how you need to act. They just let you explore yourself and let you be who you want to be.

“The team obviously want to win races and do well and that’s a priority, but there’s not this cookie cutter that you need to be a certain way, or ride your bike a certain way to be on the team, which you’ll find on a lot of other programs.”

The 28 year old will look forward to the Spring Classics again in 2019, as well as being excited for the alternative race schedule that the team plan to race next year.

“I think that it is the greatest thing ever. I mean when we were first hearing little rumors about the change and that Rapha wanted to come on board, it felt like all these different ideas that I had been talking about … all these adventures I had been thinking about, it was like someone had read my mind.”

Taylor Phinney:

Quick-Step Floors sign Mikkel Honoré
The 21-year-old has been rewarded with a two-year contract after impressing as a stagiaire in the final part of the season.

Mikkel Honoré will ride for World Tour Team Classification winner Quick-Step Floors in 2019 and 2020, following a strong season in the amateur ranks, during which he won Circuit de Wallonie and finished in the top 10 at Gent-Wevelgem and Eschborn-Frankfurt, but also rode several races as a trainee for the squad, where he made himself noticed with the commitment and hard work put in for his teammates, but also his solid results, which served as confirmation of the talent and versatility he possesses.

“It’s a childhood dream coming true to sign with Quick-Step Floors. I was given the chance to ride here as stagiaire in the last months of the season, which has been really cool and I’ve enjoyed every moment, but I didn’t dare to dream of signing a contract, so this is truly an amazing feeling. Everybody has been super welcoming, which made the experience even better and made me feel at home from the first meeting”, said Mikkel, who will be the third Danish rider on the team, alongside Michael Mørkøv and Kasper Asgreen, the latter having joined our outfit from the same Team Waoo.

As every young rider who steps up to the World Tour, Mikkel Honoré has ambitions and races he would like to win one day, but also knows that the road lying ahead is long and challenging, so he prefers to take it one thing at a time and learn the trade before setting any personal goals.

“First of all, I’m looking forward to meeting the whole team during the off-season training camps and getting a good winter training under the belt to be as ready as possible for the 2019 season, where I hope to continue where I left off and prove myself worthy. I am not setting any specific goals for now, I am just keen on learning as much as I can from all the experience my teammates and staff can offer. I can’t think of a better platform for continuing my development over the next years than the one I am being offered at Quick-Step Floors.”

Quick-Step Floors CEO Patrick Lefevere is confident Mikkel will slot quickly into the team and help the squad – for the seventh season in a row the most successful in the world – remain at the top: “Mikkel’s quality, talent and maturity surfaced not only in the U23 ranks, but also when riding against the pros, in such races as Grand Prix d’Isbergues and Binche-Chimay-Binche, which weren’t a stroll in the park, so offering him a contract was the logical step to do. We welcome him to the Quick-Step Floors family and hope we will have a fruitful relationship over the next couple of seasons.”

Mikkel Honoré:

New Zealander Mikayla Harvey Signs with Cervélo Bigla
Mikayla Harvey is the latest rider to join the Cervélo Bigla Pro Cycling Team next year. Harvey is the Oceania Continental Champion both in the road race and the U23 individual time trial.
The 20-year-old says it has been a dream of hers to race professionally in Europe. She hails 2018 as her most successful season yet after finishing second in the young rider classification of the Tour Down Under along with the Oceania results.

“I believe Cervélo Bigla is the best team when it comes to developing young riders, especially within the European racing scene,” Harvey said. “The team is full of young and driven riders, which is a perfect environment for me to thrive in. I have so much to learn when it comes to bike racing in Europe, and Cervélo Bigla has all the right qualities that I look for in a team – which will help develop me into my true potential.”

Harvey says the team’s passion for the time trial discipline was also a major factor in her decision, as this is an area she’s looking to develop.

Team Manager, Thomas Campana weighed in on the signing: “It’s exciting for us to have a rider from New Zealand as this opens up a new market. Since Mikayla appeared on the international scene, we had the chance to see her racing in the Tour of Tuscany this year. It was clear that she has great potential on the road and the TT as well. The goal is to further develop her skills. 2018 was a good progression for her and we will look to continue that momentum into 2019.”

Speaking further about her ambitions for her career, Harvey said, “It has always been my passion to race professionally in Europe – races such as Strade Bianche and Giro d’Italia have been a dream of mine. With Tokyo 2020 just around the corner, it would be such a privilege to be able to wear the silver fern and represent New Zealand in the Time Trial and Road Race. I am a very driven person and I am always striving to be the best I can possibly be. I want to develop myself into a well-rounded rider and have longevity within the sport, and one day be one of the best female cyclists.”

Mikayla Harvey:

Patiño Completes 2019 women’s Movistar Team
Colombian youngster, 21, to be part of 12-rider roster for Telefónica-backed squad’s second year of activity.

The Movistar Team confirmed Wednesday Paula Patiño (La Ceja, Antioquia, COL; 1997) will be a member of the 2019 lineup directed by Jorge Sanz in its second season as part of the UCI Women peloton.

Patiño, one of the biggest up-and-coming talents of an expanding Colombian cycling, comes into the Telefónica-backed squad after cutting her teeth for the last season at the UCI World Cycling Centre in Aigle (Switzerland), an iniciative created to nurture talents from growing countries.

The climbing abilities shown by Patiño during 2018 have allowed her taking 4th in the GP Plumelec – with her future team-mate Jasinska in 2nd, behind Ashleigh Moolman (CBT) – 14th in the overall classification of the Tour de l’Ardèche and her biggest success to date: a stage win and a 6th spot in the GC of the Vuelta a Colombia, just under a minute off the race’s podium.

The signing of Paula Patiño marks the Movistar Team’s latest addition to its 12-woman roster for 2019, which also features Aude Biannic, Roxane Fournier, Mavi García, Alicia González, Sheyla Gutiérrez, Malgorzata Jasinska, Lorena Llamas, Eider Merino, Lourdes Oyarbide, Gloria Rodríguez and Alba Teruel.

Paula Patiño in the Tour Cycliste Féminin International de l’Ardèche 2018:

Adriaan Helmantel and Morten Bennekou to Take on New Challenges Outside of Team Sunweb
The work of Adriaan Helmantel (NED) and Morten Bennekou (DEN) at Team Sunweb is to come to end, as both trainers leave the team to take on new challenges. After joining the team at the beginning of 2016 Bennekou joins the Danish national cycling federation as Head of Performance whilst after six years within their ranks, Helmantel leaves for a different challenge elsewhere.

About leaving Team Sunweb, Helmantel said: “It is with pain in my heart that I say goodbye to this beautiful team, where I feel at home. I’ve worked with all riders and staff with much fun and professionalism and look back on this period with a smile. In every person’s life, sometimes you need to reconsider what you’re doing and together with the offer I received I decided to take on this new challenge, in a new environment. I am very thankful to Team Sunweb for all of the great memories and I will always follow what the team are up to in the future.”

“I look back on three very nice and memorable years working for and with Team Sunweb,” Bennekou said. “I gained a lot of new experiences with the team and I was part of many very exciting development projects with different kinds of riders. In that perspective it’s also with quite some mixed feelings that I leave now. The offer of the role of Head of Performance at the Danish cycling federation will not come around so often so it’s an opportunity I feel I must take now. I want to thank Team Sunweb and all the riders and staff there and wish them all the best for the coming season and the future.”

Head of coaching, Rudi Kemna (NED) said: “With Adriaan and Morten we see two very experienced and highly valued trainers go. Both have been great colleagues and have done so much for the team in their roles. Our motto is keep challenging, and this is exactly what they do with taking on the challenges that have come on their paths, and we’re proud of that. On behalf of the entire team I want to thank both for their huge effort and dedication and wish them all the best for the future.”

Team Sunweb will announce replacements shortly.

Adriaan Helmantel and Morten Bennekou:

2018 UCI Cycling Gala – Guilin
Some of the best moments from the 2018 UCI Cycling Gala in Guilin, China. The 4th edition of the UCI Cycling Gala and the second one in China. Featuring David Lappartient, Annette Edmondson, Matteo Trentin, Shelley Gautier, Sofia Bertizzollo and more!

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