What's Cool In Road Cycling
Amstel Goldrace, foto Cor Vos ©2002 Armstrong en Boogerd

EUROTRASH Boogerd Thursday!

Michael Boogerd receives his ban from 10 years ago as Jonathan Tiernan-Locke plans his comeback from his suspension. Race news from Australia, routes for Langkawi and the Arctic, team news from Axeon Hagens Berman, Cervelo-Bigla, Funvic-Carrefour, BMC and Southeast. Plus rider news from Martin, Valls and a new bike for Peter Sagan. A packed EuroTrash Thursday.

 

TOP STORY: More Doping News!
After admitting his doping on Dutch TV in 2013, Michael Boogerd has been given a 2 year suspension by the UCI until the 21st of December, 2017. Boogerd will now not be able to be directeur sportif for the Roompot ProContinental team and will lose his results from 2005 to 2007. In his 2013 television interview he admitted using EPO, cortisone and taking blood transfusions. Boogerd accepts the ban, saying: “I am bearing the responsibility and accept the consequences of decisions that I have taken in the past.”

The other bit of doping news concerns the banned British rider, Jonathan Tiernan-Locke is planning on returning to cycle racing on the 28th of February this year in a local South West of England race. Tiernan-Locke has never admitted to any wrong doing and claims that the anomalies in his biological passport in 2012 was due to his celebrations after he won the Tour of Britain.

Boogerd didn’t admit his doping until 6 years after his retirement, you could say he didn’t have to, but he did and is now paying for that. Tiernan-Locke on the other hand claims his innocence, which may be true, but he was found guilty and will have served his two year ban, now might be the time to come clean and fess-up. He won’t be banned again for the same offense and it might make him look a bit better in the public eye… or he could be innocent?

Boogerd and another admitted doper:

 

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Dennis and Porte stamp their mark on the Individual Time Trial
Rohan Dennis has kicked the 2016 season off in winning form, taking out the Individual Time Trial at the Australian Road National Championships.

Dennis set a blistering pace to storm home in 51:13, 38 seconds ahead of Richie Porte, who made his debut for BMC Racing Team, with Sean Lake in third.

The green and gold jersey is a dream come true for Dennis.

“It’s always a dream to win the Aussie nationals. I’ve won the Under 23’s and now I’ve got a senior medal. To be able to wear the green and gold in every time trial this year is a true honor. We can have a bit of a celebration tonight and say job well-done for Thursday. I put a lot of pressure on myself to be the best at whatever I aim to be at, so the time trial at Rio is my big goal for this year.”

Runner-up Porte was happy with the result in his first race for the team.

“It was more of a relaxed start to the year but I’m happy to be on the podium to be honest and I’m not surprised that Rohan has taken this win. He deserves it, he’s hungry and I know how much he’s wanted that national jersey. We’re teammates now so I’m thrilled to see him win. I’ve been waiting to put the colors on and I’m happy. It’s a great team and I’m really looking forward to 2016. To be a month into the season and to finish second to a class time trialist like Rohan is a great way to start the season.”

BMC Racing Team Sports Director, Marco Pinotti, said the result could not have been better.

“It was a perfect start to the season. I’m happy for Rohan because he did better than last year so he has improved one year on and is getting stronger, and I’m happy for Richie because he hasn’t raced since the Tour de France and he did as well as last year. The course was very demanding a quite a long time trial for this time of the year.”

Looking towards the road race:
Pinotti said today’s result bodes well ahead of the road race on Sunday.
“The result is a confidence boost for Sunday. The road race will be more of a lottery but we have two strong guys in the field.”

“Richie and I are strong, 1-2 in the time trial so I’m sure we can play a good card and hopefully take another green and gold,” Dennis said.

Australian Time Trial Championship 2016 Result:
1. Rohan Dennis (Sa) in 51:13
2. Richie Porte (Tas) at 0:38
3. Sean Lake (Vic) at 1:34
4. Damien Howson (Aus) at 1:51
5. Ben Dyball (Nsw) at 1:56
6. Nick Bensley (Vic) at 3:11
7. Matthew Clark (Vic) at 3:19
8. Rhys Gillett (Vic) at 3:55
9. Nicholas Squillari (Vic) at 4:12
10. Jack Bobridge (Sa) at 4:20.

Rohan Dennis:
Tour de France 2015 - stage 1

 

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Ewan wraps up third Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic title with third victory in four days
21-year-old Caleb Ewan has wrapped up a third Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic title with another victory in Williamstown today. Ewan, who also won back-to-back on the opening stages in Geelong, becomes the second most successful rider of the 26-year running event, behind Australian sprint legend Robbie McEwen (6titles). A dominant ORICA-GreenEDGE again controlled racing on the final day, former Australian champion Luke Durbridge and debutant Jack Haig denying any attempts to break up racing.

“Look – the boys again, I always say it, they were so strong,” Ewan said. “They rode the whole race on the front. They were so impressive.”

“Luke and Jack rode the front the whole time. Even at the end, they could it up still. “Keeping me up near the front makes it a lot smoother for me so I can save a lot of energy. At the end of the race, I was feeling really good because of the position I was in. They delivered me perfectly.”

After a solid lead out by multiple track world champion Alex Edmondson, Ewan hit the final corner in front and sprinted to victory. Despite taking the corner at speed, Ewan used experience to better his rivals who battled fiercely for his wheel. “I thought I braked enough going into it, but as I was going through it I was thinking, ‘Oh gosh. I’m going a bit fast’ but I got around it alright,” he said. “I had a little gap coming out of it. It’s not far from that corner to the finish so you really have to go through it in first place to win here.”

Ewan’s third victory saw him finish the series on 43points, 13points ahead of Brenton Jones (Drapac Professional, 30points) and 16points from Patrick Shaw (Avanti IsoWhey Sports, 27points).

How it happened:
Looking for a final stage victory and to wrap the series, ORICA-GreenEDGE controlled racing on the final day of racing. Various attacks proved unsuccessful as Luke Durbridge and Jack Haig pulled the peloton to keep any moves under control. As the peloton rode around for the bell Alex Edmondson took over at the front and led Ewan out much of the final lap before Ewan kicked into the final corner to led first into the final straight and hold on for victory. The Australian Summer of Cycling now moves to Ballarat for the Mars Cycling Australian National Championships.

Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic – Men Final Result:
1. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEDGE) 43pts
2. Brenton Jones (Drapac Professional) 30pts
3. Patrick Shaw (Avanti Isowhey Sports) 27pts
4. Samuel Spokes (Drapac Professional) 16pts
5. Leigh Howard (Chain Reaction Cycles) 16pts
6. Kazushige Kuboki (Novotel Geelong/Japan) 13pts
7. Luke Parker (State Of Matter/Maap) 12pts
8. Bernard Sulzberger (Drapac Professional) 10pts
9. Daniel Fitter (State Of Matter/Maap) 10pts
10. Alexander Edmondson (Orica-GreenEDGE) 8pts.

Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic 2016 – Day 1 – Highlights:

 

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Williams stunning solo stage in Williamstown, Elvin wraps up Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic title
In a perfect day on the road, ORICA-AIS has walked away from the final day of racing at the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic with the stage win, overall title and team classification. An impressive performance saw 2015 SwissEver GP Cham-Hagendorn Lizzie Williams ride breakaway companion Julie Leth (Ale Cycling) off her wheel with three laps remaining to win solo. Behind, two-time Australian champion and day one winner Gracie Elvin secured her yellow jersey and the overall title with a fifth placed finish out of the bunch.

Williams, who backed herself before the start of racing, said the day capped off a big four-days of racing for ORICA-AIS. “To get the overall win and my first win of the season, it’s exciting times for our team,” Williams said. “I could tell I was feeling good. I was looking at my watts on the rollers and you can just tell if you are going to have a good day. So I thought, ‘I’m going to go and I’m going to go full gas and see what happens’. And it worked.

“I actually had the easier turn, she was doing the harder turn into the wind but we were working really well. Then, I could tell she was struggling and I thought, I’m not going to take the chance, I think I can do it alone.” Elvin, who has held the yellow jersey since her opening win in Geelong on Friday, finished on 38points ahead of teammate Williams and Valentina Scandolara (Ale Cycling) on 32points.

“I was still a bit nervous today, I had the shakes a bit,” Elvin said when asked if the title was ever in doubt. “It was a good day out. We had strong girls this week and it’s been so awesome to all be in great form together after a good training camp in November. “We were still here today for the stage win, that was goal but to take away the yellow jersey, we are pretty stoked about that.”

How it happened:
Just 30 riders lined up for the women’s final criterium of the Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic in Williamstown. Williams rode off the front with Julie Leth (Ale Cycling) and the pair worked together to build a sizeable gap that extended beyond 40seconds – the equivalent of over half a way. A couple of minor attacks and a solo bridge attempt by Kajihara Yumo (Novotel Geelong/Japan) proved unsuccessful as the duo continued to extend their lead. After 40minutes of racing and with just over three laps remaining Williams rode Leth off her wheel to victory. Behind, the peloton settled for the final points on offer, Elvin finishing fifth behind Scandolara to secure the overall title.

Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic – Women Final Result:
1. Gracie Elvin (Orica-AIS) 38pts
2. Lizzie Williams (Orica-AIS) 32pts
3. Valentina Scandolara (Alé Cycling) 32pts
4. Sarah Roy (Orica-AIS) 26pts
5. Kimberley Wells (High5 Dream Team) 24pts
6. Julie Leth (Alé Cycling) 21pts
7. Peta Mullens 14pts
8. Amanda Spratt (Orica-AIS) 11pts
9. Kajihara Yumi (Novotel Geelong/Japan) 10pts
10. Lauretta Hanson (Total Rush Hyster) 7pts.

2016 Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic promo:

 

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A High Speed Occasion in the 21st Edition of LTdL
The 21st edition of Le Tour de Langkawi (LTdL) from February 24 to March 2 will be marked by a first ever grand finish in the historic city of Melaka, while an eight-stage race format will see teams preparing for another grueling challenge, this time on the West Coast of Peninsula Malaysia.

Minister of Youth and Sports YB Khairy Jamaluddin announced today that the 2016 race route will redefine LTdL as ǮAsiaǯs Ultimate Challengeǯ, a battleground where top 11 world class teams from Europe will compete against 11 of Asia’s best.

“Not only that, we are expecting exciting competition from all the riders. The composition of the route will test all aspects of their capabilities, it will be an open race until the very end, which will definitely keep the fans excited,” said Khairy.

From the 165.5 kilometer first stage that starts in Kangar, Perlis and ends in Baling, Kedah where riders will be faced with a challenging Cat. 3 climb at Weng just 30km to the finish on February 24, followed by the 159.2km second stage that starts in Kulim and ends with the race’s first visit to the Penang Island since 2004.

The peloton will enter the island through the Penang Second Bridge, Jambatan Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah and will be greeted with two grueling climbs on the island at Balik Pulau (Cat.4) and 0 to 200m gradient uphill at Teluk Bahang (Cat.3), the race will be marked by significant differences, offering significant opportunities particularly for a thrilling battle among sprinters.

For a second year running, renovation works at the summit of Genting Highlands will mean the race will not feature its famous queen stage again and this time the similarly grueling climb up Cameron Highlands will play its part as the decisive stage that can determine the overall winner.

After a short 107km Stage Three from Kuala Kangsar to Tapah on February 26, the following day will be where the protagonists for the overall title will surface in the 129.4km Stage Four from Dataran MBI in Ipoh to Tanah Rata in Cameron Highlands.

From Stage Five, which covers 149.9km from Tapah to the previous traditional grand finish Dataran Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur, it will be a matter of how well the yellow jersey holder from the finish in Cameron Highlands controls the race as it is set for an epic battle for the points classification with the sprinters having four more stages clear of massive climbs to do battle.

The 147.6km Stage Six will pay homage to the main sponsors of the race – the Youth and Sports Ministry of Malaysia – with a start at Wisma KBS in Putrajaya and a finish in Rembau, Negri Sembilan, the hometown and constituency of Youth and Sports Minister YB Khairy Jamaluddin. This stage will feature a run through popular cycling routes and four short but tricky climbs in Broga, Lenggeng, Bukit Putus and Bukit Miku.

Then, the penultimate stage will feature the longest route of this year’s LTdL, covering 203.2km from Seremban to Parit Sulong, offering an unpredictable situation with tiring legs mixed among those still hungry to make a difference in the standings.

The final day of the race sees a start in Batu Pahat, Johor, covering 119.9km with three 8.3km loops along major attractions and through the narrow roads of the world famous Jonker Street before the finish in Dataran Pahlawan, Melaka.

LTdL 2016 chief executive officer Emir Abdul Jalal said with the profile of the race set this way, teams will likely line up with some climbers set for the battle for the overall title in Cameron Highlands, while many are expected to come prepared for battles in the flat finishes, which will offer spectators the unbeatable spectacle of bunch sprints.

“We can expect it to be a race for the spectators at the finish lines to enjoy. We can already visualize the peloton hitting top speed on a number of occasions,” said Emir.

“Besides the route, we aim to re-position LTdL back to the top level of organization, the “excellent level of organisation” certificate was attained from 2010 to 2014 acknowledged by the International Cycling Union (UCI).

“In terms of promotion, we will continue our collaboration with sports channel Eurosports. 8 hour Highlights of the race will be broadcasted in Eurosports Asia Pacific and 80 minutes in Eurosport 1, Eurosports 2 to over 100 countries at an estimation of 500 million viewers. Also with Internet TV site Cycling TV that has over a million subscribers worldwide.

Also present in the launching were Ministry of Youth and Sports Secretary General Datuk Jamil Bin Salleh, National Sports Council Director General Datuk Ahmad Shapawi Ismail, Ministry of Defence Chief of Defence Forces Jeneral Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin, Royal Malaysia Police Federal Traffic Chief YDH Tuan SAC Mohd Akhir Darus, Malaysian National Cycling Federation president Datuk Haji Abu Samah Abdul Wahab, state officials and tour sponsors.

Le Tour de Langkawi 2016 Route
STAGE 1, Wednesday 24th February 2016 : Kangar – Baling (165.5km)
STAGE 2, Thursday 25th February 2016 : Sungai Petani – Georgetown (159.8km)
STAGE 3, Friday 26th February 2016 : Kulim – Kuala Kangsar (107km)
STAGE 4, Saturday 27th February 2016 : Ipoh – Cameron Highlands (129.5km)
STAGE 5, Sunday 28th February 2016 : Tapah – Kuala Lumpur (149.9km)
STAGE 6, Monday 29th February 2016 : Putrajaya – Rembau (147.6km)
STAGE 7, Tuesday 1st March 2016 : Seremban – Parit Sulong (203.2km)
STAGE 8, Wednesday 2nd March 2016 : Batu Pahat – Melaka Loop (119.9km)
TOTAL DISTANCE : 1182.4km.

RaceRoute16

 

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2016 Arctic Race of Norway: Up and Down the Arctic Circle
The route of the 4th Arctic Race of Norway, which will be held from August 11th to 14th, was released this morning in Oslo.

After traveling through the paradise islands of Lofoten and Versterålen in 2013, then leading the peloton all the way to the North Cape in 2014 before continuing its exploration of the hidden treasures beyond the Arctic Circle in 2015, the Arctic Race of Norway will play with the Arctic Circle with 2 stages below and 2 stages above its line drawn at 66°33′46.0″ north of the Equator, including a start at its exact location. It will offer varied scenarios, where sprinters, but also punchers and even climbers will delight the Norwegian spectators enthusiastic as ever about the idea of welcoming some of the best cyclists in the world.

Discovering the Seven Sisters
The 2016 Arctic Race of Norway will start in Fauske on Thursday August 11 with this year’s most northern stage. After crossing the Straight of Saltstraumen, known for its tidal currents that are among the most powerful in the world, which create the famous “maelstroms” dear to Norse mythology, sprinters and punchers will battle for the victory in Rognan. The following day, after crossing the Arctic Circle during the transfer, the riders will have to cope with the risks of side winds before the finish at Sandnessjøen, at the foot of the “Sju søstre”; seven aligned peaks, which are among the most beautiful and most famous in Norway.

The Korgfellet as the decider
Stage 3 will without a doubt be the highlight-stage of 2016. The general classification will be up for grabs on this 160km stage, with the start given at Nesna, in the heart of the fjords, before two runs through the Mo I Rana, the main industrial zone of the northern region of the country. The stage victory will be decided on the Korgfjellet (8.9 km at 6.3%), with an arrival that is already part of the race’s history because no other stage of the Arctic Race of Norway has ever finished such an altitude.

A start from the Arctic Circle before the big outcome
The start of the final stage of this 4th edition will be given on the exact location of the Arctic Circle, before the peloton heads towards the north to Bodø, using then the same roads that will be used in the 2016 Norwegian Championships and on a route similar to the first stage of the maiden edition of the race. The arrival at Bodø will rekindle memories of 2013 when the town was the host of an exceptional sprint finish. The rider in the leader’s blue and orange jersey at the start of the stage will most certainly have to fend of the attacks of his rivals in the final circuit before perhaps joining past winners Thor Hushovd (2013) Steven Kruijswijk (2014) and Rein Taaramäe (2015) in the record books.

Thor Hushovd, winner of the first edition of Arctic Race of Norway, and race ambassador: “This 4th edition of the Arctic Race of Norway promises to be balanced and exciting. All types of riders will have good opportunities, with at least two sprint finishes and stage 3 as Queen Stage. I can hardly tell which rider is going to be the race leader at the end of every stage and I am curious to see to what extent can the likes of Alexander Kristoff be fighting for the overall victory”

The stages of the 2016 Arctic Race of Norway:
Ø Thursday 11 August, stage 1: Fauske – Rognan, 176 km
Ø Friday 12 August, stage 2: Mo I Rana – Sandnessjøen, 198 km
Ø Saturday 13 August, stage 3: Nesna – Korgfjellet, 160 km
Ø Sunday 14 August, stage 4: Arctic Circle (Rana Kommune) – Bodø, 193 km


Route presentation in 3D – 2016 Arctic Race of… por arcticraceofnorway

The Arctic Race of Norway can rely on its partners!
The organizers are pleased that two of the most important partners of the race, Statoil and Sparebank1 Nord-Norge, who have been sponsors since the beginning of the adventure, will continue on for three more years. The race is equally proud to announce the addition of three new Official Fans: Byggmakker, Mo Industripark and Scandic.


2013-2015 Best of Arctic Race of Norway por arcticraceofnorway

 

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Axeon Hagens Berman Jersey Revealed
Axeon Hagen Berman, one of the world’s leading cycling development teams, unveiled its new look for the 2016 season Wednesday.

The Axel Merckx-led squad features a blue-and-black color scheme on its Alé jerseys, representing the new title sponsorship of Hagens Berman, a Seattle-based national class-action law firm. Returning sponsors NEON Adventures, SRAM and Zipp and the American Proficiency Institute also feature prominently, along with the logos of new sponsors Specialized, California Giant Berry Farms and Velofix.

The back of the jersey sports the logos of Velofix, Quarq and Métier Racing & Coffee on the pockets, along with the familiar “Axel’s Axes” logo across the top. Predominantly black shorts feature SRAM-red piping on each leg and the logos of Hagens Berman, Neon Adventures, Quarq and Alé.

“The new jersey keeps our distinctive look, which is a nod to the old Renault-Elf kit of the 80s,” Merckx said. “The blue-and-black color scheme also reflects the working class nature of our program, guys working hard to become professionals.”

The United States-registered UCI continental team has sent 18 riders to the WorldTour since its inception in 2009. The team’s 2016 roster will be formally announced later this month during a training camp in Agoura Hills, California.

About Axeon Hagens Berman
Founded in 2009 by world-renowned Belgian cycling champion Axel Merckx, Axeon Hagens Berman has the goal of developing the best young talent into professional riders. With the backing of an international racing program, the team strongly supports talented young cyclists in their journey toward becoming top athletes and role models. The program has advanced 18 riders to the WorldTour ranks, including Giro d’Italia stage winner Taylor Phinney, past U.S. national road champion Ben King, two-time Amgen Tour of California “best young rider” Lawson Craddock, 2015 Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah winner Joe Dombrowski and 2009 junior world road champion Jasper Stuyven.

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Team Manager, Thomas Campana speaks ahead of the 2016 season
Happy new year to everyone. We are very excited about 2016 and welcome Cervélo to the team as a title sponsor. Cervélo Bigla Pro Cycling have wonderful partners on board and we are really excited about our team roster.

We have nine riders for this season, down from 14 the previous year. We reduced the roster as it is an Olympic year. We have a good chance of having two thirds of our roster going to the Olympics so we’ve had to adapt to such an important event. The Olympic games are still very important to women’s cycling. Men’s cycling has the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia but for women, the Olympics is a big event bringing added coverage that women’s cycling doesn’t get every season. We have 5 – 6 athletes with a good possibility of being selected for the games. We’ve adapted the program and the group to the event.

We’ve added two new riders in Stephanie Pohl and Gabrielle Pilote Fortin. Stephanie is a world champion on the track and Gabrielle is the Canadian under 23 road champion. We’ve kept a good balance in the team with a mix of experience and really good young talent. On paper the team might not look as strong as last year but I believe the team will be stronger. Unfortunately, we had an early set back when the organizers of the Tour of Qatar didn’t accept our application to the race even though we were ranked fifth in the world at the time of issuing invites. For Stephanie and for Lisa Klein, the event would have been the last preparation before the track world championships. That’s just an example of how these decision affect the riders but more importantly, it has a major effect on sponsors.

It’s a delicate situation and causes problems for our sponsors. Sponsors sign up to get coverage in certain parts of the world. In terms of Qatar, we can see that the UCI rules aren’t working. There’s a lot of loopholes within in the rules and race organizers can interrupt them they way they want. If UCI and ASO doesn’t understand how decisions like this can effect title sponsorship of a team, then they don’t understand how to grow the sport. Teams need guarantees of a race program in order to approach sponsors.

This result has motivated the girls to show what they’re made of. We’re in preparation for our training camp and everyone is excited about it. We’ve had a great response from the other race organizers so we’re very much looking forward to a great Spring campaign.

Thomas Campana:
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No Name Change for Southeast
The rumor was that the Southeast team would be changing name for 2016, but in the end it has presented its new jersey with Southeast as the main sponsor. The gray, black and fluorescent kit is designed by Filippo Pozzato and made by his clothing line PP, Pippo Pozzato Design. Venezuela also appears as second sponsor.

Rider line-up:
With Pozzato will be: Enrique Sanz (Movistar), Julen Amézqueta (Baqué-Campos amateur), Cristian Rodriguez (Caja Rural amateur), Daniel Martinez (Team Colombia), Matteo Draperi, Gilbert Ducournau and Mirko Trosino are additions from the Italian team Citracca Angelo. Jakub Mareczko, Manuel Belletti, Liam Bertazzo, Matteo Busato, Samuele Conti, Andrea Fedi, Giuseppe Fonzi, Tomás Gil, Mirko Tedeschi and Eugert Zhupa are still on the team.

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Tony Martin: “Cobblestone Races – A New Challenge”
Besides the usual races he does each season, the 30-year-old German wants to ride in 2016 two of cycling’s toughest one-day events.

Last year saw Tony Martin take five wins, one of which came in the Tour de France, where he finished first in stage four to Cambrai, after an audacious attack inside the final three kilometers of the day. That victory – his fifth in the Grande Boucle – allowed him to don the prized yellow jersey for the first time in his career. Unfortunately, just two days later, the German was forced to retire from the race due to a fractured collarbone he suffered in the run-in to Le Havre and had to take a break in order to recover, which delayed his preparations for the World Championships.

“2015 was a season with a lot of up and downs. My main goal was to take a stage and the yellow jersey in the Tour de France. I reached my goal, and that was brilliant. On the other hand, I didn’t win as much as I expected in the spring. The condition was always good, but I missed some luck. Then, as I was approaching the last part of the season, I had my mind on the Richmond World Championships, but did not mange to win the rainbow jersey, and that was a huge disappointment”, said Tony Martin of his eight season in the pro ranks.

For next year, things are pretty much clear in terms of racing schedule and goals. The German powerhouse will be gunning for a record-equaling fourth world time trial title and another stage victory in the Tour de France. But there’s more than just stage races and the World Championships for Tony Martin, who made an important addition to his program for 2016 and is now set to ride the cobbled races campaign for the first time in his career. Previously, his sole experience in a Northern semi-classic came in 2008, at Dwars door Vlaanderen, where he finished 42nd.

“I wanted to try some new things, so that’s why I talked with the team at the end of last season and agreed to go for the Belgian classics and semi-classics.”

“I will mix the regular races I usually do with the one-day races, which means I’ll line-up for Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Dwars door Vlaanderen, and if everything will work well I will try to be part of the team that will go in Gent-Wevelgem, Ronde van Vlaanderen and Paris-Roubaix in the following months. Obviously, I can’t say that I want to win there, but to test myself, to see how I do in this kind of races. It would be great to be useful to the team in those races that are really important for us, as we are a team with Belgian roots. This spring will be a test and if the signals will be good, then I’d like to continue on this road. But first I need to gain some experience, so that’s why I’m downplaying any expectations,” concluded Tony Martin, who is now attending Etixx – Quick-Step’s second training camp of the winter, in Calpe.

Tony Martin:
Cycling: Team Etixx Quick-Step 2016

 

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José Serpa not Retiring
José Serpa wants to remain active for “about two years” and try to win his home tour, the Tour of Colombia.” He want’s a new start after a decade in Europe for the “Lion of Bucaramanga,” riding first for Androni and then Lampre-Merida.

Serpa (1979) told BiciCiclismo last week that he has started a new “cycle in my life.” He added, “I spend time with my family, but go cycling. I was many years in Europe and now want to race here.”

“I put something on social networks, but saying goodbye to Europe, where I raced a lot and for several years, but I’m retiring because I want to race in Colombia for about two years.” Serpa still has goals to accomplish. “I want to win the Tour of Colombia. I have never raced in my country. The goal is that, if I feel good, then I’ll try to go for that title.” Serpa raced in seven Giro d’Italia, three Tours de France and one Tour of Spain.

For weeks, there was speculation he would ride for Continental team, Orgullo Antioqueño in Colombia, but this has not been officially confirmed or denied by himself.

José Serpa:
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New Jersey for a New Team
Funvic-Carrefour-Soul Cycles, the new Brazilian ProContinental team and the only one in Latin America next season, has revealed their all white kit and their riders for 2016. The team is looking to the future saying: “MTN-QHUBEKA is our model”.

Team line-up 2016:
Pablo Urtasun, Antonio Piedra, Octavio Bulgarelli, Flavio Cardoso, Francisco Chamorro, Alex Diniz, Murilo Ferraz, Joao Gaspar, Manarelli Carlos Magno Nazaret Prado, Roberto Pinheiro Kleber Ramos, Andre Souza, Pedro Nicacio, Nathan Mahler and Rodrigo Ribeiro dos Santos Quirino.

Funvic-Carrefour-Soul:
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New Lotto Soudal Signing: Rafa Valls
New to the Lotto Soudal team: Spain’s Rafa Valls will make his debut for the Belgian team in the Tour Down Under starting on the 19th of January in Adelaide. Last year with Lampre-Merida Valls won the Tour of Oman and had a string of top ten places. He will be joined in Australia by: Lars Bak, Thomas De Gendt, Gert Dockx, Adam Hansen, Greg Henderson & Pim Ligthart.

Lotto - Soudal team training 2016

 

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Peter Sagan’s New Bike
As World champion, Peter Sagan, can have a special Specialized bike and here it is. It’s very similar to Michal Kwiatkowsi’s of last year, but nice all the same.

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Behind the scenes: BMC Racing Team 2016 kick off
What does it mean to be part of BMC Racing Team? Find out what Rohan Dennis, Tejay Van Garderen, and Greg Van Avermaet had to say as we take you behind the scenes at the BMC Racing Team 2016 kick off in Denia, Spain.

 


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The PEZ NEWSWIRE!
Don’t forget to check the “NEWSWIRE” section, you can find it on the homepage, just above the EuroTrash section. The bits of news that missed the EuroTrash deadline are in there, plus any news as-it-happens will be added there too.

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Any comments drop me a line, email address: [email protected] or Twitter. And check the PezCyclingNews Twitter and Facebook Fan Page.

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