EUROTRASH News Round Up Monday!
Davide Rebellin to race in 2018 – Top Story. A full weekend of cyclocross, reports, results and video. Lots of other cycling news in EUROTRASH Monday: Abu Dhabi Classic, Felice Gimondi and Bart Leysen talk Giro d’Italia, new coach for Sunweb, Gazprom-RusVelo 2018 roster, Bahrain-Merida training camp and Movistar read the numbers. Monday coffee time.
TOP STORY: Another Year for Rebellin
Davide Rebellin at the age of 46 will race as a professional in 2018. The aging Italian has signed a contract with the Belgian UCI Continental team Natura4Ever-Sovac for a next season, his 27th in the pro ranks. Rebellin turned pro for the GB-MG Maglificio in 1992 and over the next years he clocked-up many short stage race wins and one day Classics, including Liege-Bastogne-Liege, Classica San Sebastián, Amstel Gold Race and la Flèche Wallonne three times.
In 2008 Rebellin took the Olympic silver medal in the Elite men’s road race behind Samuel Sanchez, but it was found that he tested positive for Mircera (CERA) and he was stripped of his place. After a 2-year ban, Rebellin returned with the Miche–Guerciotti team in 2011 then moving to Meridiana–Kamen in 2012 and riding for the Polish CCC–Polsat–Polkowice from 2013 to 2016. In 2017 he won three times riding for the Kuwait–Cartucho.es team.
His new team, Natura4Ever-Sovac is run by Geoffrey Coupé, an ex-professional rider who set up the team for the 2017 season. The team made this statement: “Davide Rebellin will be an important part of our team, both in terms of his sporting qualities and in terms of the experience he can bring to our young riders.”
So at 46, a rider who was guilty of doping gets a race contract when there are many young riders who can’t get a foot on the pro ladder. A clean young rider like Alexey Vermeulen, who has raced in the WorldTour for the last two year, is out of contract and at the moment, but has nothing on the horizon, is that correct?
Davide Rebellin – Ardennes triple 2004:
Zilvermeercross – Mol 2017
Van der Poel won the Zilvermeercross in Mol on Sunday, but it wasn’t Mathieu, but brother David van der Poel (Beobank-Corendon). Like Saturday Wout Van Aert and Matthieu van der Poel were missing. The younger Van der Poel soloed from a large group at the half-way point of the race and held on to take the win. Saturday’s winner in Hasselt, Corne van Kessel (Telenet Fidea) was close to catching Van der Poel as he out-sprinted Tom Meeusen (Beobank-Corendon) for second.
Meeusen was the fastest starter and after the first lap he had eight men with him. With Meeusen was Van der Poel, Van Kessel, Jim Aernouts (Telenet Fidea), Adam Toupalik (Beobank-Corendon), Tim Merlier (Crelan-Charles), Rob Peeters (Pauwels Sauzen-Vastgoedservice), Weiste Bosmans (ERA-Circus), and Klass Vantournhout (Marlux-Napolean Games).
Van der Poel and Merlier eased off the front half-way through the race and hand a 5 second gap with four laps to go, as Van Kessel led the chase. A lap later Van der Poel dropped Merlier. Van Kessel worked hard behind and pulled back Merlier and then Van der Poel with some other riders on his wheel. Van der Poel, Meeusen, Merlier, Aernouts and Van Kessel eased slightly allowing Vantournout and Peeters to join them.
Van der Poel then made his winning move as the Peeters and Vantournout joined the front group. With one lap to go; Van Kessel was on his own only a few seconds behind Van der Poel, but had no chance to pull back the Dutchman. Meeusen managed to tag onto Van Kessel, but would not help the chase behind his teammate Van der Poel.
Van der Poel took the win comfortably, as Van Kessel out-sprinted Meeusen for second. Merlier was fourth with Vantournhout in fifth.
Zilvermeercross – Mol Result:
1. David van der Poel (Ned) Beobank-Corendon in 58:25
2. Corne van Kessel (Ned) Telenet Fidea Lions at 0:01
3. Tom Meeusen (Bel) Beobank-Corendon
4. Tim Merlier (Bel) Crelan-Charles at 0:26
5. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games at 0:42
6. Jim Aernouts (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions at 0:52
7. Rob Peeters (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Vastgoedservice at 1:18
8. Wietse Bosmans (Bel) ERA-Circus at 2:00
9. Adam Toupalík (Cze) Beobank-Corendon at 2:23
10. Joeri Adams (Bel) kalas-H.Essers-Nnof at 2:39.
Soudal GP Hasselt 2017
With World champion Wout Van Aert and European champion Matthieu van der Poel not competing, Corne Van Kessel (Telenet Fidea) took his first victory of the 2017/18 cyclo-cross season round 3 of the Soudal Classics. Van Kessel out-sprinted his teammate; Toon Aerts in the sprint, David Van der Poel (Beobank-Corendon) was 3rd at 21 seconds.
Van Kessel started fast, but crashed at the first corner and spent most of the race fighting his way through the field, only catching the leaders with two laps to go.
The race stayed together for the early laps until Tim Merlier (Crelan-Charles), Jim Aeronauts and Toon Aerts (Telenet Fidea Lions), David van der Poel and Tom Meeusen (Beobank-Corendon) split off the front. They stayed together until Van Kessel caught them on lap six and then attacked. Van der Poel and Aerts managed to go with Van Kessel, Meeusen and Merlier were dropped. Van der Poel was eventually dropped, leaving the Telenet Fidea pair to fight it out on the last lap. Van Kessel jumped into the final corner to take the victory over his teammate Aerts. Van der Poel soloed in for 3rd ahead of a shattered field.
Soudal GP Hasselt Result:
1. Corne Van Kessel (Ned) Telenet Fidea Lions in 1:01:54
2. Toon Aerts (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions
3. David Van Der Poel (Ned) Beobank-Corendon at 0:21
4. Tim Merlier (Bel) Crelan-Charles at 0:30
5. Tom Meeusen (Bel) Beobank-Corendon at 0:42
6. Quinten Hermans (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions at 0:56
7. Wietse Bosmans (Bel) Era-Circus at 1:03
8. Vincent Baestaens (Bel) at 1:13
9. Dieter Vanthourenhout (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games
10. Diether Sweeck (Bel) Era-Circus at 1:22.
UAE Team Emirates’ Yousif Mirza Second in First Abu Dhabi Classic
UAE Team Emirates’ Emirati rider Yousif Mirza came second to Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) at the inaugural Abu Dhabi to Al Ain Classic in the UAE today. Yousif was joined by Italian teammates Roberto Ferrari – who joined Mirza on the podium – and Manuele Mori, as well as 200 other riders at the start line.
Speaking after his finish, Yousif Mirza said: “It was a great race from Abu Dhabi to Al Ain. It was quite windy and on the flat that can affect the outcome of the race. The quality was really high and all the top professionals finished in the main group. We are really proud of the strides we’ve taken in cycling here in the UAE over the past few years, thanks to UAE Team Emirates, Abu Dhabi and Dubai Sports Council. I am so proud that we have another world class cycling event right here in the UAE!”
The race, the first of its kind in Abu Dhabi, was hosted by Abu Dhabi Cycling Club and was under the patronage of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council. The race started on the Corniche and ended in the Garden City of Al Ain, 175km later.
Abu Dhabi Classic Result:
1. Mark Cavendish (GB) Dimension Date 4:31:49
2. Yousif Mirza (Emr) UAE Team Emirates
3. Roberto Ferrari (Ita) UAE Team Emirates.
Cavendish gets the win from Mirza and Ferrari:
Gimondi Bids on Froome for the Giro: “Ready for the Triple Crown”
The Italian legend believes the British rider can join the “club” of the champions able to win Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España. Felice rounded-out his grand slam in 1968 Vuelta: next GF Gimondi Bianchi (May 6th, 2018) is dedicated to that victory.
Felice Gimondi (left) in the action at 1968 Vuelta a España (Credits GF Felice Gimondi)
Felice Gimondi celebrated his grand tour triple crown in 1968, adding the Vuelta a España to his roll of honors, after the overall triumphs at Tour de France and Giro d’Italia (first out of three). The feat at 1968 Vuelta, to be celebrated in GF Gimondi Bianchi’s 22nd edition next May 6th, 2018, allowed Gimondi to enter the élite group of the champions able to top all the Grand Tours, including Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault, Alberto Contador and Vincenzo Nibali, the most recent. Three years after this latter’s achievement, there’s a further pretender aiming for the triple crown: Christopher Froome, four times king of the Tour and winner of the 2017 Vuelta.
“Froome wouldn’t have missed the Pink Race: after the Vuelta and multiple Tour de France wins, he must try to win the Giro d’Italia. I think he can succeed and get the double Giro-Tour in the same year, so that he can definitively settle himself as one of the greatest riders ever.” Gimondi looked for the double in 1967 without getting it: one of the main regrets of his career. “The deepest, I can say. I thought I could get it at the Tour: I was in a brilliant shape, but some intestinal problems knocked me out. We were on riding on the Pyrenees, I was looking for water since 30 kilometers: I took a bottle of cold water from the service van of the Tour and I drank it in one shot,” Gimondi tells. After the success in Briançon, Gimondi also topped the Puy-de-Dome stage, but he couldn’t be enough to fight for the overall win.
“Froome can do it”, Felice added. “It’s difficult to outdistance him on the climbs, because he’s properly skilled and supported by a strong team. He can also perform well in the TT stages, without losing too much from specialists like Dumoulin. Anyway, the battle will include other riders, starting from Aru, who won’t give up before having played all his cards.”
Christopher Froome celebrates win in 2017 Vuelta a España’s stage-9
The GF Gimondi Bianchi “Remembering the Vuelta” will be held on the three classic routes – short (89,4 km), medium (128,8 km) and long (162,1 km) – personally drafted by Felice Gimondi and deeply appreciated by many participants from all over the World.
From November 2nd, 2017 to March 31, 2018 the entry fee is 35 euros, including front and rear race number, magazine/schedule, information material, subscriptions, timing service, TDS timing chip, memory medal (after the finish), proof of participation, parta party voucher, parta party plus one voucher, medical and mechanical (spare parts excluded) assistance, bike storage after the finish, food services during and after the race, showers, bike parking, transmission of results by SMS and e-mail. The entry fee will be 50 euros from April 1st to 13th 2018, registrations’ closing date.
GF Gimondi’s 22nd official jersey designed by Santini Maglificio Sportivo – Made in Italy, in Energy fabric, with short sleeves and zip and “Remembering the Vuelta” limited edition special design, can be also be joined to the grid spot in a single package. This option’s cost is 68 euros from November 2nd, 2017 to March 31st, 2017, 83 euros from April 1st to 13th, 2018.
DS Bart Leysen Shares his First Impressions of the Giro d’Italia Route
Yesterday, the route of the 101st Giro de Italia was unveiled. The first Grand Tour of 2018 starts in Jerusalem on Friday 4 May. After spending three days in Israel, the Giro peloton will head to Sicily for stages four, five and six. Afterwards the riders will set foot on the Italian mainland and will cross that from south to north. On Sunday 27 May the Giro ends with a stage in the capital Rome.
The number of time trial kilometers is limited to 9.7 kilometers on day one and 34.5 kilometers in the sixteenth stage. There are not many opportunities for sprinters, with only seven stages that are marked as flat. The climbers will be enthusiastic about the course as there are eight summit finishes, among other on the Etna and Zoncolan.
Lotto Soudal sports director Bart Leysen shares his first impressions of the route of the upcoming Giro.
Bart Leysen: “The riders have a hard and exhausting Giro ahead of them. I think there will be maximum five sprints. There are two sprint stages in Israel and we can also expect a sprint at the end of the first stage on the Italian mainland. The twelfth stage to Imola is also a flat stage, but with less than fifteen kilometers to go the riders face a climb that will very likely be too tough for sprinters. A day later the sprinters have more chance of battling for victory. And then they will have to wait until the last stage.”
“I don’t think it will be a walk in the park for one rider and his team to control the race for three weeks. The positions on GC will switch several times. The course in Sicily is tough and there are a lot of narrow roads. Those three stages will already influence the GC. Due to the nature of the Giro course it could be fatal for a GC rider to wear pink early in the race and that creates opportunities for breakaway riders. Although those guys will need to climb well if they want to claim a stage win. You can compare the Giro to the Vuelta as there are hardly any flat stages.”
“The first pink jersey will be at stake in a time trial and that’s why we might take Victor Campenaerts to the Giro. The first rider who claims the pink jersey will probably wear it three days, until the first stage in Sicily. Of course we will also need to have a sprinter in our team and riders who can climb and aren’t afraid to attack. Hopefully we can continue the success we had in the past Vuelta.”
Lotto-Soudal’s Bart Leysen and Tiesj Benoot:
Coach Brian Stephens leaves British Cycling for Sunweb
Senior academy endurance coach Brian Stephens is leaving the Great Britain Cycling Team to take up a position with professional Dutch team Sunweb. Stephens joined British Cycling in 2015, from Cycling Australia to develop the Great Britain Cycling Team’s rider pathway. He has been working with under-23 riders in Manchester and the Italian training base in Montichiari.
Brian Stephens said: “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time at British Cycling. I’ve made great friends among the coaching and support staff, and have had the pleasure of working with some fantastically talented young riders who all have big careers ahead of them, looking at Tokyo 2020 and beyond. Whilst looking forward to taking up my role at Team Sunweb, I wish British Cycling the very best and am confident that the staff here will go on to achieve similar success to that which we have enjoyed during previous Olympic cycles.”
Gazprom – RusVelo unveil team roster for 2018
Russian Pro-Continental cycling team Gazprom – RusVelo announced the final roster for 2018. The team was reinforced with three more signings of young talented riders: Evgeny Kobernyak, Stepan Kurianov and Alexander Vlasov.
This year Kobernyak and Kurianov were competing in the development team of Gazprom – RusVelo and proved to be valuable riders, who are ready for the new professional challenge. In the recent years, Alexander Vlasov was a rider of one of the Italian cycling squads and showed impressive results at several prestigious races. That’s what he said about signing the contract with the team: “I am glad to start my professional career at Gazprom – RusVelo. This is definitely a big step up in my life, which requires hard and continuous work. Speaking about the team, the atmosphere is very friendly and I am sure I won’t have any problems with adaptation because I am acquainted with most of the riders and employees of the squad. I am thankful to Gazprom – RusVelo for the faith they have placed in me and I will do everything possible to forge ahead and justify the given honor.”
General Manager of Gazprom – RusVelo Renat Khamidulin reflects on changes for the upcoming season: “We announce the new team roster for 2018, which was reinforced with young talented athletes. This is a new generation of riders, which has been grown in our system. Soon they will grow into strong and stable professionals, claiming victories for Gazprom – RusVelo and the Russian national team.
Alexey Markov and Olivano Locatelli are our key Sport Directors. They are experienced professionals, who will be responsible for the training process and preparation of the newcomers. Moreover, in close cooperation with the Russian Cycling Federation we continue to work with the development team. Only by finding and developing young talents, we can think about the long-term success.”
Gazprom – RusVelo team roster for the upcoming season includes 18 riders:
Ildar Arslanov, Igor Boev, Alexander Vlasov, Evgeny Kobernyak, Dmitry Kozonchuk, Stepan Kurianov, Sergey Lagutin, Roman Maikin, Artem Nych, Alexander Porsev, Ivan Rovny, Alexey Rybalkin, Nikolay Trusov, Sergey Firsanov, Alexander Foliforov, Nikolay Cherkasov, Evgeny Shalunov, Sergey Shilov.
Gazprom-RusVelo Team 2018:
BAHRAIN MERIDA Pro Cycling Team’s Training Camp on Croatian Island Hvar
BAHRAIN MERIDA staff and athletes will be spending half of this December on Croatian island Hvar, where the Team’s last training camp before the challenges of the new season will take place.
The key goal of the training camp that will begin on 6th and end on 19th December will be to put finishing details on 2018 strategy and to strengthen the team spirit before the challenges of the new season begin. “We are looking forward to spending these few days together. There will be some hard work of course, but also enough time to strengthen the bonds between us, to welcome our new members and also to have fun and to enjoy these last free days before the beginning of the next season,” commented Vladimir Miholjević, sports director and coordinator of this training camp.
The training camp will take place on the beautiful island of Hvar, where we found the perfect partner and generous host in the Hvar Tourist Board, that contributed a great deal in the organizational part, and also Sunčani Hvar Hotels, which will be an excellent base location for the whole team, our guests, journalists, and sponsors. Hotels are located right by the sea and offer top conditions for relaxation of athletes and staff after hard work and also all facilities needed for perfect execution of the full schedule of activities planned for the training camp. Sunčani Hvar Hotels is the leading hotel group on Croatia’s premier island Hvar with a diverse collection of modern, luxury and budget hotels. The emphasis is on fostering unique experiences in one of the most beautiful islands in the Adriatic with a goal of delivering unrivaled propositions to travelers from all over the world. Hotel Pharos, where the Team will be staying, is the first-ever millennial hotel in Croatia that goes beyond the traditional guest experience, inspiring individuals to connect and explore. Branded as a bike hotel, hotel Pharos offers spacious and modern areas for get-togethers and relaxation after discovering the exciting bike routes of island Hvar. Some meetings and trainings will take place also in Hotel Amfora, another top-notch hotel in Sunčani Hvar Hotels, which offers just the right facilities for our Team’s needs.
The organization of the training camp was also easier due to a great support from The City of Hvar and Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board that will help us prepare activities through which our team members and guests can fully experience and appreciate this destination. Rare are the regions that can be as proud of so many natural varieties as Split – Dalmatia County. From beautiful Mediterranean islands with perfect pebble beaches to breathtaking mountain chain that rises from the coast, wild rivers and deep lakes on land to underground caves, that are still waiting to be explored. Although on a small geographical territory, these diverse natural conditions offer almost endless possibilities for different sports and activities – from rafting, canoeing, free climbing, trekking, and cycling on land to kayaking, sailing, and scuba diving on and in the sea. One of the most precious gems of this county is the island Hvar itself. Incredible natural beauties, stunning bays and heavenly beaches with crystal clear water are just a fraction of what Hvar offers. The island has a 2.400-years long tradition of producing top quality olive oils and sophisticated wines that are top-rated by most famous sommeliers. Unique gastronomy that combines traditional and modern cooking and rich cultural and historic heritage are another two reasons that the island Hvar is considered to be one of the 10 most beautiful islands in the world. Next year Hvar will celebrate 150 years of organized tourism on the island. In the last few years a lot of efforts were put into developing Hvar as an attractive destination for cycling-tourism. It has perfect natural conditions for such activities, which are also supported by the right infrastructure. The island has just the right amplitudes to offer great training conditions also to professionals. On this training camp our guests, riders and staff will have the chance to experience the island through visiting traditional villages, riding through magnificent landscapes, pass picturesque vineyards and lavender fields, and through enjoying unique gastronomy that will all contribute in an exclusive experience for all senses.
The training camp will be attended by the whole team and staff of BAHRAIN MERIDA. Top management, sports directors, masseurs, mechanics, PR managers, medical team, nutritionist, osteopath and other staff members will be there to support the athletes and to make sure that everything in the team runs smoothly before the beginning of the new season. Also Joaquim Rodriguez will join us on the training camp as ambassador of the team and motivator and he will also join our athletes on trainings and give them precious advices.
During media days, from 13th to 16th December, journalists and photographers from all over the world will join the Team on Hvar and have a unique opportunity to spend some time with BAHRAIN MERIDA athletes, to carry one-on-one interviews with them and to even ride bicycles side by side with them. Also a formal press conference will be held on 14th December at 2:30 pm, where the Team representatives will talk about key strategies and tactics for 2018. Some of the Team’s sponsors will also join the athletes and staff and spend some time on the beautiful island of Hvar and also give final inputs about the new equipment that BAHRAIN MERIDA Team will use in the new season.
All-in-all, some hard-working but also fun and interesting days are ahead of us and the team is looking forward to the training camp, spending time on beautiful island Hvar and of course the next season together with all the challenges it will bring.
BAHRAIN MERIDA Pro Cycling Team’s Training Camp on Croatian Island Hvar:
Big Data: How it helps Movistar Team
Telefónica’s LUCA unit has recently been a great support for the Movistar Team in its sport planning and the team directors obtain better results. Great bit of motivation.
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