EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!
The Tour de France is behind us, but the cycling World keeps on rolling and we have a very full EUROTRASH Thursday. UCI president David Lappartient wants a budget ceiling – Top Story. Results from the Tour de Wallonie and the Circuit of Getxo, plus we preview the Tour de Pologne and the San Sebastiàn Clasica. New team signing and stagieires, Vincenzo Nibali has successful surgery, memories from the Tour by Quick-Step, Sunweb and Mitchelton-Scott, Lawson Craddock raises over $195K, Dunne unveils new Irish national champ’s jersey and Ed says goodbye to Andreas Kappes. Eyes down for a full house!
TOP STORY: Less Money in Pro Cycling, Not More!
UCI president David Lappartient has said he wants to put a ceiling on pro team budgets so that team like Sky can’t dominate the Grand Tours, particularly the Tour de France. His plan is that if the teams have less money they can’t employ the best riders to work for their team leader and so making the race more open as the riders would be spread more evenly amongst all the teams. The Frenchman suggests that teams be reduced to 6 riders from the present 8. It wasn’t that long ago that teams had 10 riders. His idea is that 6 riders would tire quicker and so leave the team leader more vulnerable and less protected.
Now on paper that all sound OK, but at a time when team are struggling to find sponsors, why would you take less money. Instead of restricting income, maybe the UCI should be trying to help all the teams to have a bigger budget. Football (soccer) has a crazy amount of money, but only for the teams at the top and in the countries who have the big TV deals. The ‘lesser’ teams in smaller countries run on budgets that wouldn’t cover one of the big players wages for a year, but that’s the way of the World. The money in cycling is lose change compared to Formula 1, soccer and tennis.
Lappartient also want’s to look at power meters and race radios as a way to make racing more exciting. The riders and teams want every advantage modern technology can bring and also the safety element of radios has always been very important. Not having power meters during races might make a difference, riders might go for a solo attack in the mountains, or miss judge his effort in a time trial.
Putting a cap on budgets and wages will only mean more brown envelopes, and I don’t mean jiffy bags.
“Hey Peter, what about a pay cut and less teammates to make your job even harder?”
Tour de Wallonie 2018
Double success for Lotto Soudal during the Final Stage 5 of the Tour de Wallonie. Jens Debusschere sprinted to the victory in Waremme and took his first win since the fifth stage of last year’s Baloise Belgium Tour. Tim Wellens won the general classification after he took three bonification seconds during a furious opening phase of the race. Wellens as well as Quinten Hermans finished the Tour de Wallonie in the same time, but eventually the cumulated stage results proved to be decisive.
During the hectic start of the race, many riders attacked. Also Tim Wellens was up there and won the first intermediate sprint, which earned him three bonification seconds. That way, he was placed in the same time as the leader Quinten Hermans. Somewhat later, a big group of riders escaped the peloton, including a couple of riders who were close on the general classification. Tosh Van der Sande represented Lotto Soudal and did an excellent job for the team. In the peloton, Lotto Soudal and Telenet-Fidea led the chase. They had to give their all, but when some other teams decided to cooperate, the advantage of the break visibly decreased. Some riders tried to avoid a bunch sprint but were caught in the final kilometers. Eventually, it was Lotto Soudal rider Jens Debusschere who sprinted to the victory. The Colombian Hodeg and the South-African Gibbons completed the podium. As Quinten Hermans finished in fourth place, he just missed out on the bonifications. That way, Tim Wellens won the Tour de Wallonie.
Stage 3 winner, Odd Eiking (Wanty-Groupe Gobert): “This is my most beautiful moment on a bike. This is only my second pro victory after Boucles de l’Aulne in 2017. On the final climb I was suffering, but I was able to hang on. On the summit we were looking at each other. There were a lot of attacks and it was difficult to get away because Quick-Step was present with a strong collective and also Wellens made a good impression. But I chose the right moment on an uphill slope. I looked behind and did not see anyone coming. Thus I went full gas in the descent! I love these kind of hilly stages. Of course I was disappointed for not being selected for Le Tour. In the beginning of the season I was not feeling too good because of multiple sickness. But this beautiful victory makes up for a lot… I feel very good at team Wanty-Groupe Gobert. We ride a nice program and I get my opportunities here. Tomorrow another hilly stage awaits, that should suit me. After Tour de Wallonie my next will be a home race for me: the Arctic Race!”
Stage 5 winner, Jens Debusschere (Lotto Soudal): “Due to some setbacks in the past period, it had been a while since I was able to win. During the first stage, my chain also came off. So it’s really nice to win. We had two different goals today. I also did some work at the front to close the final gap. We were running out of Lotto Soudal riders, so I had to pull at the front until the last fifteen kilometers. Then, I tried to recover a bit, so I am very happy that I was able to sprint to the victory. It was also necessary that I would sprint, otherwise Quinten Hermans would take the overall victory. Initially, I wasn’t supposed to sprint, but luckily I did. During the last few kilometers, Tosh Van der Sande was still in the bunch but I told him that he should take care of Tim Wellens. I would do my own thing in the sprint. Cofidis and Katusha did a kind of lead-out and increased the pace. I was right behind them, close to Hodeg and Dehaes. Then, I chose the right moment to accelerate. It was close, but in the end, it was enough to take the win.”
Final overall winner, Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal): “It wasn’t easy at all to take the three bonification seconds but the team did a great job today. In the beginning, they made sure that no one could escape. Finally, everything stayed together and I could take some advantage together with two other riders. That way, I was able to take three seconds. Afterwards, a dangerous group of riders escaped but the team did once again an excellent job to catch those guys. There was some panic when they managed to break away, but we played it smart. We first let some dropped riders return. Then, the team rode with six guys, Jens Debusschere included, at the front of the bunch. It was not easy to catch the break, but finally we did at the right moment. The idea was to be good during the Tour de Wallonie and not to compete anonymously. I was really strong, but so was the team. That way, we could take two victories and the general classification. The Tour de Wallonie has been the perfect preparation for San Sebastián on Saturday, but I haven’t performed well in that race so far. I still have some doubts about that race, despite the good shape I am in.”
Stage 1 Winner: Romain Cardis (Fra) Direct Energie.
Stage 2 Winner: Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal.
Stage 3 Winner: Odd Christian Eiking (Nor) Wanty-Groupe Gobert.
Stage 4 Winner: Quinten Hermans (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions.
Stage 5 Winner: Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Soudal.
Tour de Wallonie Final Overall Result:
1. Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal in 20:22:26
2. Quinten Hermans (Bel) Telenet Fidea Lions
3. Pieter Serry (Bel) Quick-Step Floors at 0:07
4. Quentin Pacher (Fra) Vital Concept Club at 0:09
5. Jhonatan Narvaez (Ecu) Quick-Step Floors at 0:11
6. James Knox (GB) Quick-Step Floors at 0:12
7. Viacheslav Kuznetsov (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin at 0:13
8. Lorrenzo Manzin (Fra) Vital Concept Club
9. Frederik Backaert (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert
10. Fabio Aru (Ita) UAE Team Emirates.
Tour de Wallonie 2018 Stage 5 Final Kilometers:
Aqua Blue Sport acquires Sniper Cycling
Cyclocross World Champion Wout Van Aert will ride for Aqua Blue Sport in 2019 following the acquisition of his present team, Sniper Cycling (Vérandas Willems–Crelan).
Aqua Blue Sport, the company behind the www.aquabluesport.com ecommerce platform and the Irish-registered Pro Continental squad of the same name, have confirmed the purchase of Sniper Cycling team and all of its assets in a move designed to broaden the reach of its online cycling marketplace.
Founded in 2016, Aquabluesport.com is a multi-retailer online marketplace, which funds the cycling team, which in turn advertises the website. By adding the Sniper Cycling team to its cycling investments, Aqua Blue Sport hopes to further extend the business across other cycling disciplines such as cyclocross.
Van Aert, the current Cyclocross World Champion will ride in the navy and gold of Aqua Blue Sport for 2019 in both CX and road disciplines. Current Sniper Cycling team co-owner and general manager Nick Nuyens will also join the team management.
In addition, Tom Timmerman, former CEO of United Dutch Breweries, has been appointed as CEO across the Aqua Blue Sport team and website. He said: “I’m very excited to be a part of Aqua Blue Sport and looking forward to driving this project forward, beginning with our franchise cycling store models.”
Aqua Blue Sport founder Rick Delaney said: “This is a golden opportunity to expand our project internationally, and increase our audience for the ecommerce project. Wout will be a huge addition to the Aqua Blue Sport squad and we are currently in negotiations with a number of other high-profile riders for the 2019 season. We will hopefully announce these signings shortly. I am delighted with this project’s success to date, on and off the road, and the opportunity to acquire Sniper Cycling was a no-brainer for us. Having Sniper Cycling personnel involved with us is a huge bonus as it brings years of experience and expertise to Aqua Blue Sport.”
Commenting on the acquisition, Nick Nuyens said: “Aqua Blue Sport is going from strength to strength, on the road and also off it. I am very excited to be able to be involved in the team going forward. There is a lot of potential, and it is a dream for me to be working with the riders that are already there, and will be joining soon. It’s a good day for Sniper Cycling and Aqua Blue Sport.”
Soon after the Aqua Blue press release, Sniper Cycling issued this email:
“Dear press contact,
We dissociate ourselves expressly from all communication that has been published today regarding the supposed acquisition of our team by Aqua Blue Sport.
We can confirm however that Sniper Cycling and Aqua Blue Sport are currently holding talks to look into a possible collaboration from 2019 onwards. Out of respect to all parties involved, we will currently refrain from further comments.
Management Sniper Cycling.”
Will cyclocross World Champion Wout Van Aert be with Aqua Blue in 2019?:
Alex Aranburu Wins in Getxo After a Great Collective Performance
Great day for Caja Rural-Seguros RGA culminated with the victory of Alex Aranburu in the Circuit of Getxo-Memorial Ricardo Otxoa. The Basque was able to finish the good work of his teammates, adding the fourth victory of the season and the first for him as a professional cyclist.
The attitude of the green squad was once again full of combativeness. It was proved from the beginning with Justin Oien in the main breakaway of the day, along with López-Cózar (EUK), Torres (BBH) and Mihaylov (DMP). The four worked together to handle differences around two minutes.
The work of Movistar and Euskadi-Murias ahead of the bunch was getting the differences down until the break was over. From there, Caja Rural-Seguros RGA was in every break: first Fabricio Ferrari, then Álvaro Cuadros followed by Miguel Ángel Benito… Two hundred meters away came the decisive attack of Alex Aranburu, who did not look back until he raised his arms in front of Carlos Barbero (MOV) and Jon Aberasturi (EUS).
Alex Aranburu: “The presence of Justin in the break allowed us to be calm in the first part of the race. In the end we chose to move the race with several attacks. To finish off the great work of my teammates, this victory gives me a lot of confidence to face the final stretch of the season”.
Alex Aranburu Wins in Getxo:
Michal Kwiatkowski will be on the Start Line for the Tour de Pologne
After a fantastic Tour de France, the Polish rider from Team Sky will be racing on the roads of his native land.
Michal Kwiatkowski has confirmed that he will definitely start the 75th edition of the Tour de Pologne – UCI World Tour. Along with him the Team Sky line-up also includes another two Polish riders, Michal Golas and Lukasz Wisniowski. On Sunday Kwiatkowski finished a very successful Tour de France for Team Sky (Geraint Thomas 1st and Chris Froome 3rd). The day after the celebrations in Paris, he announced he will be starting in the Tour de Pologne.
“I’ve decided to start in the Tour de Pologne; it is wonderful to get the chance to ride in Poland for the delightful Polish fans, my greatest fans. When I saw the route for the Tour de Pologne I thought it would be better to start in Poland instead of the Spanish classic -Clasica San Sebastian- (which Kwiatkowski won in 2017). It is a good decision in terms of sports goals and I can meet my Polish fans as well. I have lovely memories surrounding this race. In any case it will be the road that dictates what my ambitions can be. I’m coming off of three very intense weeks at the Tour de France, where every day I gave it my all to help the team obtain this fantastic result,” says Michal Kwiatkowski, who is currently the Polish road National Champion.
Kwiatkowski is coming back to Polish roads after two years. Last spring when he was visiting the Tour de Pologne mobile museum in Grudziadz, he said, “When I look through the museum collection, I see that my part in Tour de Pologne history is very small. But I have an advantage over a lot of the others; I can still ride and win.”
Michal Kwiatkowski’s best ever result at the al Tour de Pologne dates back to the 2012 season, when he closed out the general classification in second place (after having worn the leader’s yellow jersey for two days) at the end of a fantastic duel that lasted all week between him and Moreno Moser, who ended up winning that edition.
“We are happy to see Michal Kwiatkowski back on the roads of the Tour de Pologne. His presence will contribute to making celebrations marking 90 years of the race and the centennial of Polish independence even more special. With all the important victories he has accrued, Kwiatkowski has become one of the most shining beacons in Polish cycling. I fondly remember 2015, when he raced here in Poland wearing the World Champion’s jersey he won in Ponferrada. Furthermore, it means a lot to me and I get emotional when I remember a super young Michal Kwiatkowski making his first moves on the pedals in the Mini Tour de Pologne, the children’s race which now goes by the name of Kinder+Sport Mini Tour de Pologne. Kwiato is the best example there could be for all the kids who take part in this initiative,” says Czeslaw Lang, General Director for the Tour de Pologne.
At the Tour de Pologne – UCI World Tour from August 4 to 10, Team Sky will line up the following riders: Michal Golas (Pol), Sergio Henao (Col), Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol), Salvatore Puccio (Ita), Pavel Sivakov (Rus), Ian Stannard (GB), Lukasz Wisniowski (Pol).
Sport Director: Brett Lancaster.
Tour de Pologne
Team Sunweb coach Aike Visbeek (NED): “We go to Poland with a GC goal with Sam and stage results with Phil. The parcours are challenging but the course suits us with the line up that we have. We can ride offensively and make sure that we get Sam into the best GC position for the last two stages, where the overall result will really be decided. It’s most of our riders first race back after a summer break so it will be interesting to see how it goes. Everyone is feeling motivated for a good race.”
Tour de Pologne (WT)
Phil Bauhaus (GER), Johannes Fröhlinger (GER), Lennard Hofstede (NED), Sam Oomen (NED), Michael Storer (AUS), Mike Teunissen (NED), Louis Vervaeke (BEL).
Coach: Aike Visbeek (NED).
Defending Champion Dylan Teuns Returns to Tour de Pologne
After claiming his maiden UCI WorldTour stage race victory at the 2017 Tour de Pologne, Dylan Teuns will return to the seven-stage race this Saturday to defend his title.
Teuns will be joined by a strong team at the tough stage race, including Rohan Dennis, Sports Director Maximilian Sciandri said.
“We are lining up with the defending champion, Dylan Teuns, and realistically it would be good to have another podium again. Of course winning is the goal, but it’s always hard to at UCI WorldTour stage races especially ones like Tour de Pologne which is won and lost by seconds like last year. So, a podium result with Dylan would be great and we will also target a stage win with any of the guys. We have a great team with a lot of strong guys like Rohan Dennis, Jurgen Roelandts, and Alberto Bettiol,” Sciandri explained.
“I think it will be a pretty open race. The stages are shorter than last year, they are all around 150-160km so I’m expecting fast and aggressive racing.”
Dylan Teuns is looking forward to returning to Poland and starting the second half of the season.
“I think Tour de Pologne has more or less the same hard stages every year, with the tough uphill finishes that suit me well. They are hard stages but last year I survived, and the stage where I took the stage win last year is coming back so overall it’s a nice course, and one I’m looking forward to,” Teuns said.
“Of course, it will be hard to get the same result but after the hard work I have put in the last month I am pretty confident about my shape. I’m ready to fight again to try to have some nice results.”
Tour de Pologne (4-10 August):
Alberto Bettiol (ITA), Alessandro De Marchi (ITA), Rohan Dennis (AUS), Nicolas Roche (IRL), Jurgen Roelandts (BEL), Dylan Teuns (BEL), Danilo Wyss (SUI).
Sports Directors: Maximilian Sciandri (ITA), Klaas Lodewyck (BEL).
Clasica San Sebastian:
Team Sunweb coach Luke Roberts (AUS): “CSS is a hilly race, with a technical descent into San Sebastian for the finish. Our goal is to go for a result with Michael, and we’ve got some strong legs coming out of the Tour de France with Laurens, Simon and Chad to support him on the tougher parts of the race. We’ve also got Aussie duo Jai and Chris, alongside Martijn who will also play a vital role in a solid result. Michael is back in good shape after abandoning the Tour with sickness, so we line up with confidence that we can take a nice result.”
Clasica San Sebastian (WT)
Laurens ten Dam (NED), Simon Geschke (GER), Chad Haga (USA), Chris Hamilton (AUS), Jai Hindley (AUS), Michael Matthews (AUS), Martijn Tusveld (NED).
Coach: Luke Roberts (AUS).
Laurens ten Dam:
Izagirre brothers leading TBM at their homeland Clásica de San Sebastián
Selected riders of Bahrain-Merida Pro Cycling Team are already focusing on the upcoming Clásica de San Sebastián. 38th edition of this Spanish one-day race will be held on Saturday, the 4th of August.
228,7 kilometers long, Clásica de San Sebastián is played out on a route through the steep hills of the Basque Country, Spain. The course goes over eight climbs with the steep Murgil Tontorra as the last challenge. It’s a 2.5 kilometers climb with a gradient of 9% and the steepest ramp of 22%.
Ion and Gorka Izagirre will be the TBM leaders through their homeland race with a their strong and motivated teammates.
Alberto Volpi, TBM Sports director, gave us some clean and simple key points for the strategy: “This is one of the hardest races at the World Tour. Very warm weather conditions and hard climbs. We have Ion and Gorka Izagirre to be our leaders here. They both have shown good form at Tour de France and our objective is to win this race with a teamwork that will help the brothers. We have riders able to do a good race without big suffering and the last climb at 7 km from arrival could be decisive”.
The Bahrain-Merida lineup for Clásica de San Sebastián:
Manuele Boaro / Antonio NIbali / Gorka Izagirre / Ion Izagirre / Kanstantin Siutsou / Luka Pibernik / Hermann Pernsteiner.
UAE Team Emirates – Martin and Ulissi in the Basque WorldTour race
Many of the riders who stood out as major players in the Tour de France will meet again for the Clasica San Sebastian (4 August), as they set out on another mission to capture a prestigious result in a World Tour race.
Under the leadership of Joxean Matxin (Spain), UAE Team Emirates will come to the race with these 7 riders:
– Kristijan Durasek (Croatia)
– Vegard Stake Laengen (Norway)
– Daniel Martin (Ireland)
– Manuele Mori (Italy)
– Jan Polanc (Slovenia)
– Aleksandr Riabushenko (Belarus)
– Diego Ulissi (Italy)
These were Joxean Matxin’s thoughts as he looks forward to the race: “For lots of riders the Clasica San Sebastian is an opportunity to take advantage of the physical conditioning they’ve gained at the Tour de France. Our line-up will be made up of two riders who have raced in the Grande Boucle: Daniel Martin, who was always brilliant and combative in France; and Kristijan Durasek, who was constant on French climbs.
Ulissi has the skills to be an important rider in this race and recently in London he proved to be in top form. The competition is going to be fierce; it will be essential to make it to the final in a good position and with enough energy left to spend on what, in these last few years, has turned out to be the crucial part of the route: the climb on Murgil Tontorra, coming off the back with 8 km to go to the finish line.”
Quick-Step Floors Cycling Team to Clasica San Sebastian
The only Spanish World Tour one-day race contains eight leg-sapping ascents jammed in a 229km-long course
Less than a week from the end of the Tour de France, many of the riders who completed the second Grand Tour of the season will line out for the 38th edition of Clasica San Sebastian, a spectacular race to the taste of climbers and puncheurs alike. Starting and finishing in the charming city that lies on the coast of the Atlantic, the race should get off to a quiet start before coming to life on the first of the two laps of the Jaizkibel (8.3km, 5.3%) – Arkale (2.6km, 6.3%) combo, which will make a first selection in the peloton.
With 55 kilometers to go, the riders will take again on the two iconic climbs, which could give the cue for some other moves from the bunch, although it’s widely expected that the big and potentially decisive attacks will be launched on the brutal Murgil Tontorra (1.8km, 11.5%), whose steep and grueling gradients and narrow roads can be used as springboard to victory, especially as the hill tops less than eight kilometers from the finish on the famous Boulevard.
One of the standout riders of the Tour de France, where he conquered two prestigious mountain stages en route to winning the prized polka dot jersey, Julian Alaphilippe will look to keep the momentum and be in the thick of the action at Spain’s only World Tour one-day race, where he’ll be joined by neo-pros Kasper Asgreen, James Knox and Jhonatan Narvaez, Liège–Bastogne–Liège victor Bob Jungels, Rémi Cavagna and Pieter Serry.
“San Sebastian is an iconic and beautiful race, but also a hard one with a very tough final. We hope to have a few cards to play on Saturday, if everything goes well. Julian and Bob have enjoyed an impressive Tour de France and they could be in contention. The rest of the team will come across from Wallonie, where they rode a strong race and were always up there, so the signs are good, especially as they all came after an altitude training camp. It’s never easy to win a race, and this one is no exception, especially with the depth of the field, but we are going to the start very motivated and confident”, said sports director Wilfried Peeters, who’ll lead the team from the car on Saturday.
04.08 Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian (ESP) 1.UWT
Julian Alaphilippe (FRA), Kasper Asgreen (DEN), Rémi Cavagna (FRA), Bob Jungels (LUX), James Knox (GBR), Jhonnatan Narvaez (ECU), Pieter Serry (BEL).
Sports Director: Wilfried Peeters (BEL).
Van Avermaet to Lead BMC Racing Team at Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian
Greg Van Avermaet will be back in action this weekend after a successful Tour de France campaign as he leads BMC Racing Team’s Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian roster.
Sports Director Allan Peiper said that BMC Racing Team will be lining up with a strong group of riders in support of Van Avermaet. “Greg will lead our team in San Sebastian. It’s a race where he has featured prominently every year and coming into it from the Tour de France, he will have the legs to compete for the top place,” Peiper explained. “We’ll have a strong team around Greg on Saturday, including Simon Gerrans and Michael Schär who are also coming out of the Tour de France. I think everyone will be ready to support Greg to go for a good result.”
Greg Van Avermaet is coming into the UCI WorldTour one-day race in good shape after showing strong form at the Tour de France. “I was happy with my form at the Tour de France and I had some nice results so, I’m going into the Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian feeling motivated to do a good race. It’s a challenging course but I like it and that style suits me so if my shape is good, another top ten finish would be great,” Van Avermaet said.
Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian (4 August)
Patrick Bevin (NZL), Simon Gerrans (AUS), Michael Schär (SUI), Miles Scotson (AUS), Greg Van Avermaet (BEL), Francisco Ventoso (ESP), Loïc Vliegen (BEL)
Sports Director: Allan Peiper (AUS).
Greg Van Avermaet had a good Tour de France:
Vincenzo Nibali has Successful Surgery
Bahrain-Merida Pro Cycling Team rider Vincenzo Nibali has undergone a successful surgery today after fracturing the tenth thoracic vertebrae in a crash during Stage 12th of Tour de France.
The operation was performed by Neurosurgeon Prof. Giovanni Broggi, assisted by Dr. Levi, this early morning at the clinic “La Madonnina” in Milan.
“Vincenzo Nibali underwent percutaneous bilateral vertebroplasty surgery of the 10th thoracic vertebra” explains Bahrain-Merida Team Doctor Emilio Magni, who was present at the operation “It consisted of the injection of biocompatible cement into the body of the vertebra”.
This afternoon Vincenzo will be able to get out of bed and tomorrow he will be released. In a few days, he will be able to go back to training, initially on a static bike and then back on the road.
Quick-Step Floors: Memories from the 2018 Tour de France
The Quick-Step team talked with their riders and staff about their personal highlights at the end of three long and arduous weeks on which we can look back with pride and happiness, after winning four stages and the iconic polka dot jersey.
The Decisive Week
Team Sunweb take you behind the scenes during the final week of the Tour de France with their latest #InsideOut feature; The Decisive Week. The fly-on-the-wall documentary features exclusive footage of Team Sunweb’s journey to 2nd at the Tour de France.
Mixed Emotions for Mitchelton-Scott as the Tour de France Concludes in Paris
The Tour de France wrapped up in Paris today with Mitchelton-Scott walking away proud, albeit without the desired results.
The Australian outfit selected and prepared a strong eight-rider squad to support young general classification hopeful Adam Yates. When difficult days on stages 11 and 12 forced a regroup and refocus, they were up to the task.
The team went on to animate or feature in the break in most of the remaining stages. And, with a little more luck may have walked away with a couple of stage wins.
Amongst the highlights was the stage three team time trial, where the team fell just nine-seconds short of the victory, despite a heavily fall to Luke Durbridge and Daryl Impey the day prior.
Giro d’Italia stage winner Mikel Nieve came agonizingly close on stage 11 when he led solo up the final climb only to be caught by eventual yellow jersey winner Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) in the final few hundred meters.
Having regrouped from his disappointment, Yates also featured in several breakaways in search of a stage victory. His best chance was on stage 16 when he led solo down a final descent only to crash with five-kilometers to go and relinquish his lead.
Despite walking away without the results, head sport director Matt White couldn’t fault the endeavor of the team throughout the month. “We set the bar high so of course we leave a little disappointed results-wise but we couldn’t have asked more of the boys,” White said. “The true test of character this Tour de France was their adaptability when the focus shifted. They never stop fighting, we really animated the race from the moment we switched focus and they continued to put themselves in the right position to try for a result each day. We were close a number of times and things didn’t fall our way, but that’s professional cycling, that’s sport, and it certainly wasn’t through a lack of effort.”
It was a big three weeks with plenty of ups and downs at Le Tour de France but, like always, we couldn’t be prouder of our riders and staff. 100% every single day.
Katusha-Alpecin Continue to Sign/Re-sign Talent for Next Season
Team Katusha-Alpecin are happy to announce three more agreements with riders for the current and next cycling season. Returning riders Willie Smit and Viacheslav Kuznetsov have both signed one-year agreements for 2019, while Dmitry Strakhov will join the team as a stagiaire for the rest of the 2018 season.
Smit, age 25, is still in his first year of racing at the highest level, but General Manager José Azevedo likes what he’s seen from the South African.
Azevedo: “He came to us from a continental team as first in the African ranking, so this has been a very big step for him. This year he did a few WorldTour races, and we know that’s a lot to ask, so it was a bit of a test to see his capacity and potential. He’s had some interesting results – as an example in Amstel Gold race he rode almost all day in the break when he had never raced at all in Holland. It’s complicated for riders when they don’t know the race. In other races he’s tried to sprint. So he has shown us his potential but he needs time and we’ve re-signed him for another year. We believe in him and I believe after this learning year, next year he can show his true self.”
A returning veteran of 6 years on the team is 29-year old Russian ‘Slava’ Kuznetsov.
Azevedo: “Kuznetsov has been with us many, many years and we know him very well. He’s a rider who is part of the classics group, but he’s also fast and sometimes when we need him to work for our leaders, he is able to do this job. We want to keep Slava in the team for two reasons – one, because he is an important rider for the classics to work for our leader and two, he’s also a rider when given some freedom can get a result. We want to continue our work with him from these last years.”
A new face on the team will be 23-year-old Russian Dmitry Strakhov, who will come on board as a stagiare August 1st.
Azevedo: “I have followed him these last two years. He’s a fast rider. In 2018, in Spain and Portugal, he’s won five races in a sprint, most of the time when the stage has been hard. So he can pass over parcours that include medium mountains and then still sprint. He’s a rider that has some possibilities in the classics. He has shown us some of his potential so we believe in him and are happy to bring him onto the team as a stagiare with the idea to keep him on the team for the next two years.”
Matti Breschel to Return to #PinkArgyle
#PinkArgyle is pleased to announce that Matti Breschel has extended his contract with the EF Pro Cycling organization. Breschel — a fan and staff favorite who isn’t afraid to belt out old rock and roll songs on the bus — has long been a steady hand in the northern classics and reliable captain.
Matti Breschel has twice ridden for the team… His first stint in argyle came in 2016; he left for the following season but returned at the start of 2018. “It was totally a no brainer for me. I was hoping the whole year to re-sign, and I’m happy it worked out. I’m thrilled to be a part of the team for next year,” Breschel said. “I’m already looking forward to the classics. Helping a guy like Sep Vanmarcke gives me a lot of inspiration.”
The upcoming season will be Breschel’s 15th as a professional cyclist. The 33-year-old Dane has nine stage wins at the Tour of Denmark on his palmarès, a victory at the Tour de Luxembourg and a win at the Philadelphia International Championship. He’s finished both second and third in the Worlds road race (2010, 2008, respectively).
“I’m super happy,” said Breschel. “I like riding for this team — there’s a democratic feel, no rigid hierarchy, and a friendship among riders. And we turn it on when we need to.”
“It’s great to be able to bring Matti back,” EF Pro Cycling CEO Jonathan Vaughters said. “He’s a solid rider in many different types of races. Ok, the classics we know he’s reliable as a helper and also capable of striking off on his own, should tactics allow. But also in a road captain sense he’s very good. He knows where guys are supposed to be and when, and we can trust him to keep riders in good position. He can lead out a sprint, too.”
Guillaume Martin extends with Wanty-Groupe Gobert until 2020
Wanty-Groupe Gobert can count on Guillaume Martin for two more years. The French climber, who finishes his second Tour de France in 21st position, decided to extend his commitment until the end of 2020. In 2016 the 25-year-old Martin became a professional at Wanty-Groupe Gobert. He won the Giro della Toscana in 2017 and the Circuit de la Sarthe in 2018.
Guillaume Martin: “It was not an easy choice, so I thought about it for a long time. I am now 25. I have been a professional for three years now, so I am at an important point in my career: I started this wonderful adventure three years ago and I do not forget that Jean-François Bourlart was the first to trust me. We have built something in the past three years. It was not always perfect and we made some mistakes, but we are always trying to make progress. I am an important pawn in this project, which I appreciate. ”
“I am happy to continue with Wanty-Groupe Gobert. I am growing bit by bit, just like the team and it is positive that our evolution is growing together. We continue together. I have never hidden that I am ambitious and I want the team to be ambitious too. I noticed that Jean-François Bourlart is ambitious and we will certainly take steps together. ”
“Of course the last two participations in Tour de France play an important role. I hope we will be invited again, especially with a Grand Départ in Belgium. Few teams can give me the status and responsibilities that I get in this team.”
Jean-François Bourlart: “We are a young team that develops its identity and strives to build on every year. Guillaume Martin is a talented rider who has the same goals as ours, which allows us to evolve together. Guillaume is a real leader in the stage races, appreciated by the public and able to win stages and play a role in the general classification in grand tours.”
“His commitment to the end of 2020 is a great sign of confidence in our project and the evolution of its operation. For our team Guillaume is a real asset because it is a leader who allows us to position ourselves as a serious candidate for a third Tour de France, with a departure in Brussels. This allows us to finish a second Tour in a positive way. We did not finish in the top 15 as hoped, but Guillaume was long in the battle for the white jersey. We wore the polka dot jersey for three days, our first distinctive jersey ever in a grand tour.”
Guillaume Martin on the attack in the 2018 Tour:
Corrigendum – Bagioli, Covi and Tivani: UAE Team Emirates’ Trainees
Starting August 1st, the two Italians and the Argentine will race with the Emirati formation.
The heads and technical staff of UAE Team Emirates have chosen three young cyclists who will get the chance to race in the ranks of the Emirati team starting August 1st; details of their schedule are still being worked out. Keeping a constant eye on identifying cycling talent, UAE Team Emirates is expanding its orbit to include Andrea Bagioli (Italy), Alessandro Covi (Italy) and German Nicolas Tivani (Argentina).
Andrea Bagioli, born in Sondrio (Italy) on 23/03/1999, has shown a proclivity for climbing: in 2018, his first year in the Under 23 class wearing the Team Colpack jersey, he achieved two successes (3rd stage and general classification in the Toscana Terra di Ciclismo-Eroica Under 23), in addition to three second places and two third places.
Alessandro Covi was born in Borgomanero (Italy) on 28/09/1998. In two years in the Under 23 class riding for Team Colpack he celebrated six victories, four of them in 2018. He is a resistant rider who has also shown agility on climbs as well as fine sprinting skills.
German Nicolas Tivani was born in Pocito (Argentina) on 31/10/1995. A sprinter who doesn’t seem to suffer on climbs of medium difficulty, he has honed his skills at the UCI Centre Mondial du Cyclisme. He’s already scored four successes in 2018, to add to the five victories he enjoyed in 2017.
Trek-Segafredo Registers Two Stagiaires for Remainder of 2018 season
Beginning August 1, two riders from the UCI continental team Polartec-Kometa will join Trek-Segafredo as stagiaires to fulfill their 2018 season.
It’s no surprise that one of them is 21-year-old Italian Matteo Moschetti. Moschetti was a stagiaire with the team in 2017 and subsequently moved to Trek-Segafredo’s feeder team, Polartec-Kometa, for further development. That decision proved to be fruitful: Moschetti has seven victories this season, a second place in stage 3 of the Baby Giro, and multiple top ten finishes.
Trek-Segafredo already announced they had signed Moschetti for the 2019-2020 seasons. He will join the team again as a stagiaire until the end of the season before turning pro with Trek-Segafredo on January 1, 2019.
Moschetti: “I am really looking forward to going back to Trek-Segafredo, after the great experience I had with the team last year. I have improved and strengthened and gained a lot of experience since I joined the team for the first time about one year ago. I hope to be able to prove the team right in giving me the chance to turn pro as of next year, and I am eager to get some results.”
The second young gun joining Trek-Segafredo is Michel Ries, a 20-year-old talented Luxemburgish climber who recently finished ninth overall in the Baby Giro d’Italia.
Ries: “I am really honored to get this opportunity to race for Trek-Segafredo for the rest of the season, and I am really looking forward to learning as much as possible doing races with the team. For me, the most important will be to develop myself further as a rider, and I am really excited to start racing with them in the Tour of Utah. It’s kind of a dream coming true.”
Luca Guercilena, General Manager: “We are always on the lookout for young talents to whom we can give the opportunity to experience racing in a World Tour team. With Matteo Moschetti joining the team as neo-pro as of January 1st, it was an obvious choice to have him as a stagiaire again. He has made a big step forward, and we’re curious to see him racing with the team again.
“Michel Ries is a strong climber that we were following closely for a while now. After his great performance at the Baby Giro recently there was no doubt anymore that he would be our second stagiaire. We are looking forward to welcoming both guys in the team and are confident that they will perform well.”
Moschetti and Ries:
Two Riders Move Up To Team Novo Nordisk Pro Squad as Stagiaires
Standout development riders – Oliver Behringer and Declan Irvine – will race as stagiaires with the men’s pro squad for the remainder of the 2018 season.
Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team, is bringing up two of its standout development riders, Swiss Oliver Behringer and Australian Declan Irvine, onto the men’s pro squad as stagiaires for the remainder of the 2018 season.
Behringer has raced bikes since his childhood. When the now 22-year-old was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 11, he received an overwhelming amount of negative information and stopped racing. His approach and mindset changed after a meeting the team’s predecessor, Team Type 1, at the 2011 Tour de Suisse. From that day forward, he set his sights on racing for the team and showing the world what may be possible with diabetes. By 2013, he was racing as a U19 rider in Switzerland as part of a local development team. He joined Team Novo Nordisk’s development squad in 2017 season and has shown a remarkable ability to climb in the mountains. In his first year with the team, he earned four top 10 finishes including third on Stage 5 of the Georgia Grand Prix Series and fourth at the Upstate Cycling Classic Time Trial.
“I’m so happy that the team believes in me and is providing me with this amazing opportunity. I feel blessed to have the chance to race as a stagiaire with the pro team,” Behringer said. “I know this means even harder work and suffering. Racing on that new level won’t be easy, and I want to show that I belong there.”
“Team Novo Nordisk remains a relatively young project and we are still in the development phase. One aspect of our strategy is to locate talented and promising type 1 diabetes riders and provide them with a program so they can evolve into professional athletes,” Team Novo Nordisk General Manager Vassili Davidenko said. “Both of these riders started with our Talent ID summer camps and come with pure talent and true dedication.”
Nineteen-year-old Irvine had an active childhood in Australia competing in everything from motocross to sailing. At 12 years old, he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes after losing a significant amount of weight and temporarily lost his vision. When he was 14, Irvine started doing triathlons and quickly got addicted to the training and competing. As a junior, he came in second at the Australian Duathlon Championship and represented Australia at the 2015 World Duathlon Championships. In 2015, Irvine joined Team Novo Nordisk’s junior team. He won three races in Belgium and earned multiple podium finishes. Since moving up to the development team, he has won the New South Wales road race and criterium state titles. This season his results include winning Stage 2 of the Georgia Grand Prix and finishing eighth overall at the UCI 2.2 classification Vuelta Republica Dominicana where he also took second on Stage 1.
“Declan has been with our program for years and has quickly and efficiently moved through the ranks of the junior and development teams,” Davidenko said. “He is an all-around rider who at just 19 years old will bring a youthful boost to the professional team.”
“To be asked to stagiaire with the pro team is a dream come true. Being a part of Team Novo Nordisk means the world to me; this organization has become my extended family,” Irvine said. “Racing for Team Novo Nordisk is about so much more than riding our bikes–we race to inspire, educate and empower people living with diabetes and all the people we meet at races and interact with through social media serve as my inspiration.”
Behringer is slated to make his professional debut at the Tour of Rwanda, which begins Sunday, while Irvine will make his pro debut later this season in Asia.
For more information, go to www.teamnovonordisk.com.
Team LottoNL-Jumbo Secures Young Danish rider Vingegaard for Two years
Team LottoNL-Jumbo continues to build on the future by contracting the 21-year-old Danish talent Jonas Vingegaard. Both parties have agreed on a two-year deal. Vingegaard is a climber and comes from the Danish ColoQuick Cycling Team. “Our ambition is to have the world’s greatest talents in our team. We have followed and tested Jonas extensively and he’s been discussed by our scouting team. We believe he has a bright future. Like all our talents, Jonas will get a long-term development plan. We will guide him intensively”, sportive director Merijn Zeeman of Team LottoNL-Jumbo explains.
The Dane is delighted with his move to the Dutch WorldTour squad. “I’m very pleased to have signed a contract with Team LottoNL-Jumbo, which is a big dream coming true. I am really looking forward continuing my development at a professional cycling team like this. Team LottoNL-Jumbo is the right choice for me in the way they are focusing on the process and not only on the results. I hope that I can contribute to the teams’ future success. Meanwhile, it has been amazing being a part of ColoQuick. I couldn’t have achieved this without them.”
According to the current sports director of Vingegaard, Christian Andersen, Team LottoNL-Jumbo is the logical next step for his pupil. “This team reflects the core values of ColoQuick and the way we work with young talents. There is no doubt that Team LottoNL-Jumbo is the right team for Jonas. They really show a passion in the way they take care of the young riders.”
Tom Devriendt Extends for Two Years
Tom Devriendt has extended his contract with Wanty-Groupe Gobert for two years. The Belgian won the Omloop van het Houtland in 2017 and finished on the podium in Binche-Chimay-Binche. This year he showed himself as a classic rider in the Tour of Flanders, where he finished 30th. He also finished third in the second stage of the Rhône-Alpes Isère Tour. Devriendt joined our pro-continental formation in 2015, now he will definitely stay until the end of 2020.
Tom Devriendt: “The team soon already made clear that they wanted to extend my contract, which is a nice sign of confidence. I showed myself in the spring classics, and I have also grown as a trusted rider in the train for Timothy Dupont. Next year I want to profile myself even more in the spring classics. My performance in the Tour of Flanders gave me hope. I am not made to be a leader. But in a free role I can perform strongly in certain classics. ”
“The team knows that they can count on me. I may not be the most consistent rider, but in the races where they count on me, I will stand ready to support the team. I am also a mood maker and I feel very good in the team. The contract extension of Xandro Meurisse was also very important to me. We are best friends for a long time and I get energy boosts from guys like him. ”
“I have been struggling with my knee over the past few weeks, that is why I had to abandon in Tour of Austria. I hope that these problems are now gone. I still aim to perform over the next weeks, like last year. First I go to the Tour of Denmark, where I will support Xandro Meurisse.”
Lawson Craddock Raises $195K and Counting en Route to Paris as Tour’s Lanterne Rouge
EF Education First – Drapac p/b Cannondale’s Lawson Craddock became the first American to earn the unlikely honor of “Lanterne Rouge” when he crossed the Tour de France finish line in Paris on Sunday. The title, an informal one, is awarded to the rider that finishes in last place on the general classification.
The Texan has occupied the final spot on the leader’s board for the duration of the race. He crashed on the opening stage when he hit a water bottle and bounced off the road. Craddock climbed back on the back and finished the stage.
“It’s been an incredibly testing three weeks,” said Craddock. “I’ve pushed myself well beyond my limits. There were many times during the race that I wasn’t sure if I could make it, but the encouragement and generosity the whole world has shown me motivated me every step of the way. To reach the finish line in Paris has been incredibly emotional.”
Craddock went straight from the stage one finish line in Fontenay-le-Comte to the Tour’s mobile x-ray truck. Diagnosis? Stitches required for a laceration above the left eye and a broken scapula.
He broke down in tears when the media questioned him following x-rays.
When Craddock expressed a desire to stay in the race, the team rallied around him to help make it happen. He required chiropractic sessions three times a day, regular consultation with the team’s medical staff, and assistance from team directors and his teammates en route to the finish line.
While the team’s efforts largely addressed Craddock’s body, the Texan knew he needed something to hold onto to address the mental challenges. Lying in bed the night after his crash, he landed onto what he came to describe “a way to turn a negative in a positive.” He would donate $100 to Alkek Velodrome for every stage he finished. Craddock grew up racing on the Houston track that was hard-hit by Hurricane Harvey.
He sent out a tweet announcing his intentions and challenged others to match his donation. He went to sleep shortly after sharing his plans and woke to hundreds of responses – a choir of “how do we donate, too?”
Craddock set up a GoFundMe in response. At the time of publication, he has raised $195,000 for his home velodrome.
“Without the fundraiser, I probably would have gone home a couple of weeks ago,” said Craddock. “Especially in the days immediately after the crash and in the recovery process, I drew a lot of motivation from the campaign. It’s going to change the future of the track.”
Craddock’s story of strength, courage and positivity resonated around the globe. Fans used #CraddockWatch on Twitter to trade notes on Craddock’s location throughout any given stage. Media requests poured in.
“It was a very selfless thing Lawson did – to stay in the race and to raise money for the velodrome he grew up racing on,” said #PinkArgyle CEO Jonathan Vaughters. “Across the board, the team was also very selfless in supporting him on a day-to-day basis to get him through the race. From the first day, when he broke the scapula, from Pierre Rolland opening up gels for him to feed him at the very back to the incredible work our chiro did.
“In the end, it was down to Lawson’s grit and his determination. He did that with a lot of panache and a lot of honor.”
Dunne Unveils New Irish National Champion’s Jersey
Newly-crowned Irish National Road Race Champion Conor Dunne has revealed his special edition team jersey for the next 12 months.
Dunne, who soloed to victory in the Elite Men’s competition held in Coolaney, Sligo on July 1, will wear the jersey and matching kit in competition and training for the remainder of 2018 and the first half of 2019, honoring the entitlement of a national cycling champion.
Designed by Aqua Blue Sport in collaboration with Cycling Ireland, the sport’s governing body in this country, the jersey has been manufactured by team kit partners Vermarc Sport of Belgium. It features a striking white base with a green band across the chest and back augmented by subtle shamrock detail, with the iconic gold chevron of Aqua Blue Sport still in situ. On the sleeves, the jersey features a green, white and gold tricolour band in a double nod to the Irish national flag and to the Aqua Blue Sport team colors, a detail which is duplicated on the cuff of Dunne’s matching bib shorts. The Irish tricolour is also found – as it is on all Aqua Blue Sport jerseys – on the inside collar. On the rear of the jersey, Dunne’s name is emblazoned in green across the shoulders, in keeping with standard team edition kit.
The official Irish National Road Race Champion 2018/19 jersey is now available for pre-order from www.aquabluesport.com.
RIP Andreas Kappes by Ed Hood
It’s with much sadness that we report the death of former six day and road star, Germany’s Andreas Kappes at just 52 years of age. He was stung by a bee whilst on cycling team management duties and died from ‘allergic shock’ on 31st July.
Kappes was one of the all-time great six day men, rated 18th in the last edition of the six day results ‘bible’ – ‘Statistieken.’ Off 122 starts he recorded only two DNF and scored 24 wins, 24 second places and 26 third places. Of those 24 wins, 13 came with Belgium’s Etienne De Wilde off 30 starts, making them the 11th most successful team in history – the Swiss duo of Bruno Risi and Kurt Betschart are the most successful with 37 wins off 130 starts.
His career was also noteworthy for it’s longevity, from 1987 to 2008 – Danny Clark had the longest career, from 1974 until 2000. He is ‘recordman’ on rides at Bremen – his home city – with 22 starts but despite his six wins there he’s not ‘recordman’ on victories with that honor going to Dutch six day great, Rene Pijnen on seven wins.
And whilst Kappes’ first big success came on the track, winning the World Junior Points Race title in 1983 he was also a gifted road rider with the season-opening Omloop Het Volk and multiple stages – including one in the Giro – to his credit. He was an Olympian at Los Angeles in 1984 with his pro career beginning with the West German, Buss team in 1987; but he was snapped up by Toshiba and finished the year with stage wins in the Ruta del Sol and Red Zinger (USA) stage races.
Still with the French team for 1988 he scored stage wins in the Midi Libere, Paris-Nice and Giro.
He won his first Bremen six in 1989, again with Toshiba, as well as the six days in Dortmund and Munich.
On the road he won Paris-Camembert, the Ronde de L’Oise and two stages in the Tour of Switzerland – and managed a top 12 placing in the Tour of Lombardy. Toshiba again in 1990 with winning the Cologne six as the hi-lite. He transferred to Belgian team Histor for 1991, took the prestigious one day Spanish race the Trophy Luis Puig, Omloop Het Volk, a stage in Paris-Nice and was second in the tough GP Plouay.
On the track there were six day wins in Cologne, Bremen, Munich and Stuttgart. He won Bremen again in the colors of Telekom in 1992; and was with Mecair-Ballan for 1993 with a win in the Stuttgart six day and an impressive 13th spot in the World Road Race Championship in rain sodden Oslo behind Lance Armstrong.
In 1994 with Trident he was back on the podium at Het Volk and won stages in the Dunkirk Four Day and Tour of Switzerland – and there was another win in Bremen. In 1995 he was in the colors of Italian team, Refin winning the Gent six day and the hotly contested and lucrative Coca Cola criterium series in Germany. He remained with Refin into 1996 and won in Cologne again as well as taking a stage in the GP Tell in Switzerland. With Mediapark Koln for ’97 he won the Bremen and Stuttgart six days. German squad Gerolsteiner in ’98 and wins in the Cologne and Leipzig six days with only points race master Juan LLaneras able to best him in the Worlds. Agro Adler was the name on the jersey for the next three seasons and in ’99 there were wins in the six days of Berlin, Munich and Stuttgart – and a stage win in the Deutschland Tour. The Bremen six day fell to him in 2000, as did Stuttgart. There were no wins in 2001 but he made the podium in Berlin, Bremen, Dortmund, Gent and Stuttgart. In 2002 he followed the route of many six day men of the era and rode for ‘personal’ sponsors, recording his penultimate six day win in Dortmund. The following year saw him win the European Madison Championship with Andreas Beikrich and still be able to burn up the German criterium scene. It was 2004 when he won his last six day, Stuttgart with Beikirch and Gerd Dorich [three man teams] with podiums too in Bremen, Berlin, Dortmund, Munich and Gent.
In 2005 he was still active on the German criterium circuit and was second in the Stuttgart six day. A year later, in 2006 he won the German Derny title to add to the stayer title he took in 1999. It was 2008 when he finally called time after winning a Derny paced race in Rhede. His career was winding down just at the time I started working at the six days but remember being excited about being in the presence of one of my six day idols. With that tan and thick black hair he always looked a million dollars. The last time I saw him he was working as a mechanic at the London Six Day; I meant to get an interview but never did. A big mistake on my part, that opportunity has now gone forever.
Andreas Kappes, bona fide six day vedette, Het Volk winner, Giro stage winner and cool guy, rest in peace sir.
The PEZ INSTAGRAM Take a look at our Instagram page for a live feed of #PeloPics, #DailyDistractions, and giveaways straight from your phone: https://www.instagram.com/pezcyclingnews
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.