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EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

All the latest cycling news

Will Mathieu van der Poel ride Paris-Roubaix? Tour de Luxembourg, Grand Prix de Wallonie and Giro della Toscana with results and video. Will Mark Cavendish stay with Lefevere? – TOP STORY. Sánchez and Landa with Bahrain Victorious and Mathieu van der Poel for Worlds and Roubaix. Teams for the World championships: Belgium, Slovenia, Britain, Spain, Norway, Denmark, Switzerland and Canada. Deceuninck – Quick-Step for the next Belgian races, 2022 Vuelta a España starts in the Netherlands, 2021 Paris-Roubaix course, young Tormans-Circus Cyclo Cross riders, Merhawi Kudus to EF Education-Nippo, Ben Hermans stays with Israel Start-Up Nation, Rolf Aldag to BORA-hansgrohe and behind the scenes at the Tour of Britain with INEOS Grenadiers. EUROTRASH coffee time!

top story
TOP STORY: Mark Cavendish Offered a 1 Year Contract with Quick-Step-Alpha Vinyl
Mark Cavendish can extend his career for at least one season. At the end of last year Cavendish was emotional in front of the cameras after his last races because it could possibly be his last, things are now different. ‘Cav’ won four stages in the 2021 Tour de France and at that point the conversation about an extension was difficult.

The 36-year-old Manx Missile equaled the victory record of 34 stage wins held by Eddy Merckx in the Tour de France. He also won the points classification and again Patrick Lefevere caused a revival with an ex-top rider. The success has a downside, because the Cavendish camp would now like more money than the Belgian team manager is willing to offer, according to Het Nieuwsblad.

During the most recent Tour of Britain, Lefevere officially proposed a one-year contract to the British 2011 World champion. In recent weeks, talks between the two parties are said to have been strained, because they are financially far apart. According to the Belgian newspaper, Lefevere has made a proposal based on bonuses to Cavendish.

In addition, the flamboyant team manager has appointed Fabio Jakobsen as the first sprinter for 2022. The 25-year-old Dutchman – recently the winner of three stage victories in the Vuelta a España and the points classification – can prepare for his debut in the Tour de France next year. Cavendish would like to take one more stage win, with which he would be the record holder.

“However, the premise is simple,” Lefevere recently stated in one of his columns for the same newspaper. “We would like Mark to stay with the team and I think he knows himself that the grass is not greener anywhere else. Only he should not overestimate his market value in the euphoria of the Tour. If everyone acts normally, we’ll figure it out,” was his thought at the time.

Can Cavendish win in another team?
tdf21st4

 

luxembourg
Tour de Luxembourg 2021
João Almeida became the first Portuguese rider since the legendary Acacio da Silva, in 1990, to win a stage of the Tour de Luxembourg on Tuesday. Stage 1 was a short and hilly 140km stage that finished with a reduced bunch sprint.

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An interminable succession of climbs awaited the peloton, who allowed a six-man group to build a maximum gap of 4 minutes after rolling out from the country’s capital. Deceuninck – Quick-Step hit the front with 20 kilometres from the start, asserting their control over the race and steadily chewing into the gap of the men up the road. Fausto Masnada, who made his first appearance in almost three months for the Wolfpack, was among those devoting all their energies to bringing back the breakaway, which was mopped up inside the closing 3 kilometres. Deceuninck – Quick-Step reeled in some late attacks before bringing Almeida to the front as the road began rising ahead of the flamme rouge, and the 23-year-old patiently waited for the finishing straight before bursting clear from his opponents, courtesy of a truly ferocious sprint unleashed 200 meters from the line that brought him his fifth victory of the season.

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Stage winer and overall leader, João Almeida (Deceuninck – Quick-Step): “It was a very hard stage, and to be truthful, I didn’t feel great, but I had a strong team around me who did an amazing job, chasing the escapees and protecting me throughout the day. I knew that if I had the legs, the uphill finish would suit me. I played it smart there and I’m happy I could pull it off. Donning the yellow jersey is a nice bonus, but we won’t think of the GC just yet, and instead continue to take it day by day and see how things go.”

2nd on the stage and overall, Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo): “Actually I didn’t feel very well at all, I think I could still feel the efforts of the European Championship and the travel day in my legs. I finally managed to keep myself a bit aloof. I think we can be happy with how the stage went. Our intention was to control things, in order to keep the break in check. That was important in view of the classification and for the stage win. Alex (Kirsch) has done a good job almost the entire race. We took our responsibility, because we saw that the leading group was riding very strong. With a three minute lead, it was wise to do our share of the work. It’s important to keep the situation under control during short stages like this. Vincenzo (Nibali) and Mattias (Skjelmose) were also still in the group, but neither of them had a great feeling. In the last 20 kilometres I decided to move up as the road was slippery and there were a lot of bends. I came out of the last corner well and I wanted to launch my sprint with 200 meters to go, but Almeida managed to get past me quickly. I couldn’t do much else. I’m quite happy and satisfied with my performance, as it’s only the first day of this Tour de Luxembourg. I am now looking forward to the next days.”

3rd on the stage and overall, Marc Hirschi (UAE Team Emirates): “Today was a really hard day : up and down roads with two big climbs towards the end which were hectic as guys fought to get into position. We covered all the attacks and in the end we were 20-30 riders left for a sprint. I’m pleased with 3rd today and we will look for more opportunities as the week goes on.”

Tour de Luxembourg Stage 1 Result:
1. João Almeida (Por) Deceuninck – Quick-Step in 3:16:09
2. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
3. Marc Hirschi (Swi) UAE Team Emirates
4. Clément Champoussin (Fra) AG2R Citroën
5. Nairo Quintana (Col) Arkea-Samsic
6. Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis
7. David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
8. Andrea Vendrame (Ita) AG2R Citroën
9. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
10. Kobe Goossens (Bel) Lotto Soudal.

Tour de Luxembourg Overall After Stage 1:
1. João Almeida (Por) Deceuninck – Quick-Step in 3:15:59
2. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo at 0:04
3. Marc Hirschi (Swi) UAE Team Emirates at 0:06
4. Clément Champoussin (Fra) AG2R Citroën at 0:10
5. Nairo Quintana (Col) Arkea-Samsic
6. Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis
7. David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
8. Andrea Vendrame (Ita) AG2R Citroën
9. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
10. Kobe Goossens (Bel) Lotto Soudal.

Luxembourg’21 stage 1:

 

Marc Hirschi won the Queen Stage 2 of the Tour de Luxembourg. On the final climb to Eschdorf, the Swiss rider of UAE Team Emirates broke away from the favourites group and took his first victory for the Arab team. Thanks to his lead at the line and the bonuses, he also took over the yellow leader’s jersey from his future teammate João Almeida.

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The second stage covered 186.1 kilometres from Steinfort to Eschdorf, in the northwest of Luxembourg. The route went up and down through and around the valley of the Sûre. The riders were sent across the Côte de Holtz, the Côte de Boulaide, the Côte de Ringel and the Côte de Kaundorf before arriving at the finalé, which involved three climbs of the Côte de Eschdorf – an average climb of 8.4% with ramps up to 12.4%. The finish is 800 metres after the last climb.

In the first hour a leading group was formed with four men: Sebastian Schönberger (B&B Hotels), mountain classification leader Kenny Molly (Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB), Adam de Vos (Rally) and Kamil Gradek (Vini Zabù). They got 5 minutes away from the peloton, where Almeida’s team, Deceuninck – Quick-Step, controlled the race. The difference to the leading group fluctuated between 4 and 5 minutes for a long time. When Groupama-FDJ, the team of David Gaudu and Thibaut Pinot, and the UAE Team Emirates of Marc Hirschi also got involved in the chase, the difference started to shrink. The escapees had 2 minutes left when they rode up the Côte de Eschdorf for the first time, 48 kilometres from the finish. There the peloton exploded and the large group split. The first large group, led by Groupama-FDJ and Trek-Segafredo, quickly caught the leading group, which was almost caught with 40 kilometres to go. Molly and De Vos were caught first, after which Schönberger and Gradek were allowed to continue ahead for a while. The Austrian from B&B Hotels soon caught and the Polish rider also quickly realised that staying ahead was pointless, and with 30 kilometres from the finish the peloton was complete again. The Côte de Eschdorf soon followed for the second time, where Arkéa-Samsic started the race, but Deceuninck – Quick-Step took control again.

The Côte de Eschdorf did not cause any attacks, but the pace of Deceuninck – Quick-Step and Groupama-FDJ ensured that the peloton was considerably thinned out. At the passage of the line, there was a sprint for the bonuses, with Almeida taking 3 seconds and again leading the competition. With 20 kilometres to go, Anthony Turgis escaped. The French Classics specialist, 21st in the standings 10 seconds from the yellow jersey, took a nice gap on the peloton. Mauri Vansevenant turned inside out for his leader Almeida, but Turgis used the camera motorbike and managed to take 30 seconds. Because the peloton didn’t come any closer, UAE Team Emirates came to lend a hand 6 kilometres from the finish. With renewed forces, the difference began to narrow. Turgis started the final climb to Eschdorf with only 10 seconds lead, and was passed by the large group with 3 kilometres from the finish. Hirschi then took a small lead along with Davide Formolo and Nairo Quintana. With 2 kilometres to go, Hirschi jumped away from his fellow escapees, while leader Almeida had to chase with Groupama-FDJ. Partly because people looked at each other behind him, the Swiss rider was able to stay ahead and win this second stage. His lead at the line was 8 seconds over the group with Almeida, Gaudu, Formolo, David De la Cruz and Pinot.

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Stage winner and overall leader, Marc Hirschi (UAE Team Emirates): “To win here solo is a really nice feeling. On the last climb the gap opened and I went full gas because I had nothing to lose. It was a very long day because of the rain and each time up the climb the pace was really hard. It’s nice also to take yellow though I think it’s going to be difficult to defend it in the time trial because I know Almeida is very strong.”

Tour de Luxembourg Stage 2 Result:
1. Marc Hirschi (Swi) UAE Team Emirates in 4:45:12
2. João Almeida (Por) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:08
3. David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
4. Davide Formolo (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
5. David De la Cruz Melgarejo (Spa) UAE Team Emirates
6. Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
7. Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies at 0:20
8. Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) Groupama-FDJ
9. Nairo Quintana (Col) Arkea-Samsic
10. Clément Champoussin (Fra) AG2R Citroën.

Tour de Luxembourg Overall After Stage 2:
1. Marc Hirschi (Swi) UAE Team Emirates in 4:45:12
2. João Almeida (Por) Deceuninck – Quick-Step at 0:08
3. David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
4. Clément Champoussin (Fra) AG2R Citroën at 0:20
5. Attila Valter (Hun) Groupama-FDJ at 0:41
6. Oier Lazkano Lopez (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
7. Kobe Goossens (Bel) Lotto Soudal
8. Juan Ayuso Pesquera (Spa) UAE Team Emirates at 1:13
9. Jan Maas (Ned) Leopard Pro Cycling at 1:24
10. Kevin Colleoni (Ita) BikeExchange at 1:31.

Luxembourg’21 stage 2:

 

wallonie
Grand Prix de Wallonie 2021
Christophe Laporte won the Grand Prix de Wallonie. On the difficult climb to the Citadel of Namur, the French puncheur had the best legs in the final sprint after a lot of preparatory work by his Cofidis team, which he will leave after this season for Jumbo-Visma.

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After a year of absence due to corona, the Grand Prix de Wallonie was back on the calendar for 208.1 kilometres. It took a long time before the break of the day escaped. It was eventually Larry Warbasse (AG2R Citroën) and Laurenz Rex (Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB) who eventually got away. They were later joined by Matthew Riccitello (Hagens Berman Axeon), the third youngest rider to start. Jens Reynders of Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise also managed to cross. The peloton let them go and the 4 escapees were able to ride away from the big pack for a 5 minute lead. BORA-hansgrohe took the initiative behind. The German team had Giovanni Aleotti, Emanuel Buchmann, Patrick Konrad and Ide Schelling in the battle for the race. Lotto Soudal, the team of Tim Wellens and Tosh Van der Sande, also took the lead and the gap to the leading group quickly decreased. With 88 kilometres to go the lead had fallen to 1 minute, but the rumblings started in the leading group. Reynders tried to pull away, but the Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise rider was pulled back by his fellow escapees.

Lotto Soudal did a lot of work in the chase, but saw Steff Cras and Sylvain Moniquet crash on a corner. However, the chase for the leading group continued unabated, also by Alpecin-Fenix. On the Côte de Warnant, there was a rapid acceleration from the peloton. Nils Politt among others, ensured that the escapees were almost caught. Riccitello was the first to be caught. Rex and Reynders tried to stretch their attack attempt a bit, but the peloton was all together again. Lotto Soudal, Uno-X and AG2R Citroën in particular were very active in the first kilometres of the circuit around Namur. On the first ascent of the Tienne aux Pierres, Ide Schelling attacked and the Dutch rider from BORA-hansgrohe had Maxim Van Gils and Michael Gogl with him. Their escape attempt was short-lived, but it did spark new attacks from the favourites. Politt attacked again, together with Louis Vervaeke, Wellens and Baptiste Planckaert. In the end, a leading group was formed with Sep Vanmarcke (Israel Start-Up Nation), teammates Christophe Laporte and Rémy Rochas (Cofidis), the Lotto Soudal duo Andreas Kron and Wellens, Tiesj Benoot (DSM) and Rasmus Tiller (Uno-X). This strong group was brought in again, but the race was on. Politt made a very strong impression and gave it a try 55 kilometres from the finish. Nevertheless, the peloton entered Namur for the first pass of the citadel climb. The peloton came over the top together, but the attacks kept coming and going. In the run-up to the final passage of the Tienne aux Pierres, calm returned and it was mainly Israel Start-Up Nation ahead of Ben Hermans and AG2R Citroën who controlled the race. The closer the peloton got to the climb, the more teams came forward. Israel Start-Up Nation then rode up the climb at a brisk pace. When Vanmarcke pulled over, Victor Campenaerts accelerated.

The Qhubeka-NextHash rider had been very active throughout the race, but was not given any space. The second ascent of the Tienne aux Pierres caused a significant thinning of the peloton, it would all be decided on the Citadel of Namur. After the climb, however, it remained restless, with Ilan Van Wilder and Wellens mixing it. Thirteen kilometres from the finish, Warren Barguil made a strong push, but the gap was closed by Wellens. With 10 kilometres to go Rochas and Iver Skaarseth rode away and although Rochas initially did not want to participate because of his leader Laporte, he took a gap, but this lead was also closed. There was a moment of quiet, which Gogl tried to take advantage of, but the Austrian was also caught. Cofidis took the lead in the pack, which had again increased in size. The French team set its hopes on Laporte. Vervaeke tried again 2 kilometres from the finish. The Belgian from Alpecin-Fenix ​​rode off the front for a while, but everything was back together with 1 K to go. Cofidis did everything for Laporte, who rewarded his team’s hard work with the win. Barguil stayed closest and came second. Tosh Van der Sande took third place. Godon and Tiller completed the top-5. This was Laporte’s fourth win of the season.

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Race winner, Christophe Laporte (Cofidis): “The team has done a great job. We were always up front and we controlled the race as best we could. There was a lot of attacking in the final, but we were always in the right place. Simon and Rémy were very active in answering all the attacks. I still felt good on the last climb and I was able to do a good sprint. I am really happy and I have to thank the whole team.”

Grand Prix de Wallonie Result:
1. Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis
2. Warren Barguil (Fra) Arkea-Samsic
3. Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) Lotto Soudal
4. Dorian Godon (Fra) AG2R Citroën
5. Rasmus Tiller (Nor) Uno-X
6. Patrick Konrad (Aut) BORA-hansgrohe
7. Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Israel Start-up Nation
8. Tiesj Benoot (Bel) DSM
9. Dimitri Claeys (Bel) Qhubeka NextHash
10. Lennert Teugels (Bel) Tarteletto-Isorex.

GP Wallonie’21:

 

toscana
Giro della Toscana 2021
Michael Valgren won the 2021 Giro della Toscana-Memorial Alfredi Martini. The 29-year-old Dane was the strongest of an elite group in Pontedera, from which he broke away in the last 10 kilometres. Behind him, Alessandro De Marchi and Diego Ulissi rode to second and third place.

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The Giro della Toscana has the double passage of the Lajatico climb, then in the final, the climb of the Monte Serra twice: this mountain has returned to the course after a year of absence.

Six riders managed to escape after about 15 kilometres: Davide Bais (eolo-Kometa), Valentin Ferron (TotalEnergies), Marco Frapporti (Vini Zabù), Angel Madrazo (Burgos-BH), Edoardo Martinelli (Mg.k Vis VPM) and Nicolas Nesi (D’Amico-UM Tools). The six had a lead of more than 4 minutes. With the first climb to Latajico on the horizon, EF Education-Nippo took control of the peloton. Bahrain Victorious also contributed in the pursuit with the new European champion Sonny Colbrelli. After more than 80 kilometres the finish line was crossed for the first time and the peloton could prepare for the Monte Serra. This climb was 8.3 kilometres long at a 7.2% average gradient. The break started with a 2 minute lead. One after the other of the break was dropped; only Bais and Ferron remained. In the meantime, UAE Team Emirates had taken over the work and the back door was wide open. One of the main victims was Colbrelli, who had to stop early. 80 kilometres from the finish the pack had swallowed the early breakaways. Valgren was first to the top, which started attacks from his teammates. Rigoberto Urán and Sergio Higuita jumped away on the descent together with Lorenzo Rota of Intermarché-Wanty Gobert. Going into the last lap with more than 55 kilometres to go, the leading trio had a good minute lead. In the peloton it was then INEOS Grenadiers that set the pace, led by Geraint Thomas. At 38 kilometres from the finish, the three leaders were caught. Marco Frigo (SEG) jumped away at the foot of the Monte Serra for the second and last time. The youngster was caught by Davide Villela (Movistar), Neilson Powless (EF Education-Nippo) and Rafał Majka (UAE Team Emirates).

Alexander Cepeda (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec) and Luca Wackermann (eolo-Kometa) also joined the lead. Gianni Moscon set the pace behind in a group that thinned out rapidly. The five were pulled back, after which Daniel Muñoz (Androni) tried again with Powless. In the end it was Majka who passed them and emerged first, but the differences were small. The American then closed the gap and continued on his own, but was pulled in by Tao Geoghegan Hart of INEOS Grenadiers. EF Education-Nippo then sent Higuita forward, with Stephen Williams (Bahrain Victorious) on his wheel, but due to the presence of the young British rider, Higuita sat up. Valgren then attacked and the elite group looked at each other. With 12 kilometres to go he had a good gap, which got bigger. Behind him, the collaboration was not good and Powless and Higuita held the chase back. Valgren rode on for the victory.

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Race winner, Michael Valgren (EF Education-Nippo): “This win was much tougher than the one in the Amstel Gold Race. This is an uphill race and I’m not a climber. I had to go really deep to survive the climbs at all, so this was definitely tougher than the Amstel Gold Race I won in 2018. Although I must say I knew the Monte Serra. My first year as a pro I lived in Luca, close by. I think it’s a nice climb, so it was nice to be there and fight for the win. At six kilometres from the end I knew I was going to win. I had a lead of fifty seconds at the time, I knew it was enough. I also have to thank my team. Our tactic was to make the race hard. In the final we were superior to our opponents and we were able to play out the numerical surplus. I have seen a strong team and I consider myself lucky to have fantastic teammates. I gradually hope to return to my level of 2018. Every race I feel better and better. I really have to thank the team for that, I’m in the right place here. I’m hoping for a good season now. First at the World champs with Denmark, where we have a very strong and ambitious team. After that, I want to play a leading role in Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Lombardy.”

4th, Lorenzo Rota (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux): “I felt mentally and physically fresh after a week of rest at the end of a busy period with the Tour de France, San Sebastian and the Tour de Pologne. I trained for two weeks in Tignes, on altitude, where I focused on climbing and power. This training was fruitful as I felt ready to come back in competition and performed well today. Tactically the final was not easy today, because EF outnumbered the other teams. They attacked one by one and it wasn’t possible to follow all attempts of those four riders. So with Valerio Piva we thought the best option was to focus on the sprint. In the end, I finished close to the podium. Even if it was possible to get a better result, I’m very satisfied about my performance which is promising for the next races.”

Giro della Toscana Result:
1. Michael Valgren (Den) EF Education-Nippo in 4:33:37
2. Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) Italy at 0:13
3. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 0:18
4. Lorenzo Rota (Ita) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
5. Davide Villella (Ita) Movistar
6. Marco Canola (Ita) Gazprom-RusVelo
7. Sergei Chernetskii (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo
8. Gianni Moscon (Ita) INEOS Grenadiers
9. Sergio Higuita Garcia (Col) EF Education-Nippo
10. Samuele Battistella (Ita) Astana-Premier Tech.

Toscana’21

 

bahrain
Bahrain Victorious Signs Sánchez and Extends with Landa
As expected, the Bahrain Victorious team has committed Luis Léon Sánchez for the next two seasons. The 37-year-old rider has raced for Astana-Premier Tech and Astana for the past seven seasons.

At Bahrain Victorious, Sánchez will be riding alongside another Spanish rider. There was some uncertainty about Mikel Landa’s future, but the 31-year-old climber has extended his contract with the WorldTour squad. Landa, who won the Vuelta a Burgos this year, will be with the team until the end of 2023. Both deals have yet to be officially confirmed by Bahrain Victorious.

More wins for Sánchez:
ordizia

 

alpecin fenix
Mathieu van der Poel Changed His Program Before the World Championships
Mathieu van der Poel experienced back pain on Monday after Sunday’s Antwerp Port Classic, which he won. There is always a question mark on his participation in the World championships and Paris-Roubaix, but there is now slight hope for Alpecin-Fenix. The 26-year-old Dutchman will not ride the Championship of Flanders on Friday, the Belgian newspapers write.

Sports director Christoph Roodhooft explained to Het Laatste Nieuws. “We are trying to put more quality in the training sessions this week. And then we keep the distance between the races as large as possible.” Instead of the race in Koolskamp (UCI 1.1) on Friday, Van der Poel will now complete the Impanis Classic (UCI 1.Pro) on Saturday. A slightly harder race, where he may also meet Julian Alaphilippe. Gooikse Pijl will follow on Sunday; that race often ends in a sprint.

The question is whether MvdP can now get fit in time for the World championships, which will take place in Leuven in less than two weeks. The back really bothered him on Monday. “We like to think that he can train well again on Tuesday,” says Roodhooft. “The towel for the World championships has not yet been thrown. It is true that he misses training work and competition kilometres. There’s not much we can do about that now. It’s not like he can train ten times six hours. But is that a problem?”

Roodhooft admits in Het Nieuwsblad that a World champs participation of their leader after the Antwerp Port Epic has ‘obviously become more likely’. The sports director also clarifies that the pain in Van der Poel’s back does not upset his planning. “The reaction in his back to the race is normal. We will continue as planned. If I were national coach Koos Moerenhout, I would select Mathieu anyway. If necessary, you can always remove him from the selection.”

Worlds and Roubaix for Van der Poel?
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alpecin fenix
Mathieu van der Poel on the Alpecin-Fenix Paris-Roubaix Start List
Mathieu van der Poel has been put on the start list of Paris-Roubaix by Alpecin-Fenix. The Dutch leader has been confirmed by the Belgian ProTeam for the Hell of the North on 3rd October.

On Tuesday evening, national coach Koos Moerenhout confirmed that Van der Poel is in the selection for the World championships in Flanders, despite the fact that there is still some doubt about the back injury of the all-rounder. He will decide after next weekend whether he will race. In the run-up to the world championships, Van der Poel will ride three more races, Alpecin-Fenix ​​confirms. These are the Primus Classic (Saturday 18 September), the Gooikse Pijl (Sunday 19 September) and the GP de Denain (21 September). And then – probably – first the World championships and then on October 3, Van der Poel’s debut in Paris-Roubaix.

Sprinters Tim Merlier and Jasper Philipsen will also start in Paris-Roubaix for Alpecin-Fenix. Merlier will compete in the Championship of Flanders (September 17), the GP d’Isbergues (September 19) and the Omloop van het Houtland (September 23). Philipsen has the Championship of Flanders (September 17), Eschborn-Frankfurt (September 19), GP de Denain (September 21) and Paris-Chauny (September 26) on his way to the Hell of the North.

Let’s hope Roubaix goes better than the MTB Olympics for MvdP:
olympics

 

belgium
National Belgian Coach: “The European Championships Gives a Lot of Confidence for the World Champs”
Sven Vanthourenhout goes to the World Championships in his own country with confidence. The national coach of the Belgian team looks back with satisfaction on the European Championship in Italy. “We take three medals with the U23 and the pros, so that’s fantastic.”

“We have had a fantastic week in which the youth has ignited a lot and we have been able to continue that line. Especially with Thibau Nys taking gold. That is of course fantastic, for many a surprise. We were also very happy that he could make that happen. But Lennert van Eetvelt is the man of the European Championships for us,” said Vanthourenhout.

Remco Evenepoel was the big man of Belgium in the men’s road race. He made the race hard, but was unable to drop Sonny Colbrelli. Evenepoel had to settle for silver. “We got the most out of Remco. I have seen a fantastic team and with the federation we have done a really good supporting job. The results were there,” said the national coach.

This weekend the World championships will start with the individual time trial between Knokke-Heist and Bruges. Vanthourenhout indicates that the European Championship has given the team a boost. “This gives a lot of confidence. Especially because we feel that the operation is okay. Everyone is sharp. If you can go to the World champs with this result, it gives a lot of confidence, both for the guys who have to do it on the bike and the people who are on the sidelines.”

A strong Belgian Worlds team:
euro21

 

slovenia
Tadej Pogačar to Ride the Worlds Time Trial and Road Race, Primoz Roglič Road Race Only
Tadej Pogačar and Primož Roglič lead the Slovenian selection at the World championships in Flanders. The winners of the Tour de France and the Vuelta a España will ride the road race between Antwerp and Leuven. Roglič misses the time trial.

Roglič’s place in the time trial is taken by Jan Tratnik. The ITT between Knokke-Heist and Bruges is the opening of the World championships week in Flanders on Sunday 19 September. In addition to Pogačar, Roglič and Tratnik, Matej Mohorič, Domen Novak, Luka Mezgec, Jan Polanc and David Per will also ride the road World champs. Žiga Jerman has been designated as a reserve by the national coach.

Among the women, Eugenia Bujak, Urška Žigart, Urška Bravec and Špela Kern have been called up for the Worlds. Bujak combines that with the time trial.

Slovenia squad for the 2021 World Championships
Road race elite men:

Luka Mezgec
Matej Mohorič
Domen Novak
David Per
Tadej Pogačar
Jan Polanc
Primož Roglič
Jan Tratnik

Elite men time trial
Tadej Pogačar
Jan Tratnik

Road race elite women
Urška Bravec
Eugenia Bujak
Pela Kern
Urška Žigart

Elite women time trial
Eugenia Bujak.

Pogačar and Roglič together at the Worlds:
roglic pogacar

 

gb
British Worlds Squad with Tom Pidcock, Mark Cavendish and Ethan Hayter
The British Cycling Federation has announced which riders will be at the start of the World championships in Flanders, which will be held next week. Mark Cavendish, Tom Pidcock, Ethan Hayter and Lizzi Deignan are the top names in the roster.

Hayter finished second in the Tour of Britain last weekend behind Wout van Aert, after he also finished second in the Volta ao Algarve this season and won the Tour of Norway. The versatile 22-year-old INEOS Grenadiers rider has been selected for both the road race and the time trial. In the road race he will be joined by Mark Cavendish, last summer’s green jersey winner in the Tour, Olympic MTB champion Tom Pidcock, Luke Rowe, Fred Wright and Jake Stewart, as well as Connor and Ben Swift.

In the women’s race, winner of the Tour of Switzerland Lizzie Deignan has been selected, as has SD Worx riders Anna Shackley, Alice Barnes, Anna Henderson (Jumbo-Visma), Pfeiffer Georgi (DSM) and Joscelin Lowden. Georgi and Lowden also ride the time trial. “I’m really looking forward to the World Championships on the road as we have some serious medal contenders in every category,” performance director Stephen Park said in a press release. “It will be great to see Mark and Lizzie bring their form and experience to a squad that is eager to win medals.”

Park is looking forward to the men’s road race with interest. “Based on what we know about the course and with so many riders in top form, we decided not to choose just one leader. So we have a number of options in the race. The race can really go to anyone! We expect strong performance across the board. It’s great to have the team back together.”

Great Britain squad for the 2021 World Championships
Road race elite men

Tom Pidcock
Luke Rowe
Fred Wright
Jake Stewart
Connor Swift
Ben Swift
Mark Cavendish
Ethan Hayter

Elite men time trial
Ethan Hayter
Dan Bigham

Road race elite women
Lizzie Deignan
Anna Shackley
Alice Barnes
Anna Henderson
Pfeiffer Georgia
Joss Lowden

Elite women time trial
Joss Lowden
Pfeiffer Georgia

Mixed Relay Team Time Trial
John Archibald
Dan Bigham
Alex Dowsett

Alice Barnes
Anna Henderson
Joss Lowden.

Ethan Hayter for the road race and TT:
norway21st2

 

spain
Spain Relies on Aranburu, García and Serrano for the Worlds
The Spanish selection for the World championships in Flanders has been announced. The men’s road squad includes strong puncheurs and classic types such as Alex Aranburu, Iván García and Gonzalo Serrano. The talented Carlos Rodríguez makes his World championships debut: he combines the road race with the time trial.

In addition to Aranburu, García, Serrano and Rodríguez, experienced riders such as Imanol Erviti and Gorka Izagirre are also part of the World champs selection. In addition, Roger Adriá and Antonio Jesús Soto get a ride. They also rode a remarkable European championships last week for the Spanish team. INEOS Grenadiers talent Rodríguez is the only time trial rider on behalf of Spain. The 20-year-old recently finished second in the Tour de l’Avenir and tenth in the Tour of Britain.

Among the women, six riders have been called up for the road race, including the strong climber Mavi Garcia. Ziortza Isasi will ride the time trial. Earlier this summer, she finished sixth at the Spanish Time Trial Championship.

Spanish team for the 2021 World Cycling Championships
Road race elite men

Roger Adriá
Álex Aranburu
Imanol Erviti
Iván García
Gorka Izagirre
Carlos Rodríguez
Gonzalo Serrano
Antonio Jesus Soto

Elite men time trial
Carlos Rodríguez

Road race elite women
Mavi Garcia
Sheyla Gutierrez
Sara Martín
Eider Merino
Lourdes Oyarbide
Ane Santesteban

Elite women time trial
Ziortza Isasi.

Carlos Rodríguez:
Carlos Rodríguez

 

norway
Alexander Kristoff Leader in Norwegian Worlds Team
Alexander Kristoff is the leader of the Norwegian six at the upcoming World championships in Flanders. The strong sprinter, who won silver at the World championship in 2017, will be accompanied by Vuelta revelation Odd Christian Eiking.

Kristoff will be accompanied by two teammates from UAE Team Emirates in the road race; Sven Erik Bystrøm and Vegard Stake Laengen. Eiking is the other WorldTour Norwegian on the roster. Uno-X riders Markus Hoelgaard and Rasmus Tiller complete the roster. This year they have shown that they can perform well in the Flemish races. Andreas Leknessund will ride the individual time trial. He is the only Norwegian at the World time trial championships. Leknessund is the first reserve for the road race.

Norway squad for the 2021 World Championships
Road race elite men

Sven Erik Bystrøm
Odd Christian Eiking
Markus Hoelgaard
Alexander Kristoff
Vegard Stake Laengen
Rasmus Tiller

Elite men time trial
Andreas Leknessund

Road race elite women
Susanne Andersen
Katrine Aalerud
Stine Borgli
Emilie Moberg
Anne Dorthe Ysland
Ingvild Gåskjenn

Elite women time trial
Katrine Aalerud.

Kristoff and Bystrøm:
Bystrøm Kristoff

 


Denmark Worlds with Kasper Asgreen, Magnus Cort and Mads Pedersen
Tour of Flanders winner Kasper Asgreen, three-time stage winner in the Vuelta a España Magnus Cort and former road World champions Mads Pedersen and Amalie Dideriksen are part of the Danish squad for the World championships in Flanders. Surprisingly Søren Kragh Andersen and Michael Mørkøv are not riding.

Danish national coach Anders Lund is ambitious but at the same time tempers expectations for the road race for elite men. “We have to keep our feet on the ground and humble in a road race where we are clearly not the only strong team. But even with all the realism and humility, there is still a chance of a Danish world champion. It is with that mindset that we start this task.”

Kasper Asgreen and Mikkel Bjerg will contest the individual time trial. Both riders also rode the European Time Trial Championships, but missed the medals. Asgreen was seventh and Bjerg 21st. “Although the European Championships were not flashy, I think both Bjerg and Asgreen have more in the tank and can get closer to the top at the World Champs,” Lund said.

Denmark squad for the 2021 World Championships
Road race elite men

Kasper Asgreen
Mikkel Bjerg
Magnus Cort
Mikkel Honoré
Andreas Kron
Mads Pedersen
Michael Valgren
Mads Würtz Schmidt

Elite men time trial
Kasper Asgreen
Mikkel Bjerg

Road race elite women
Amalie Dideriksen
Trine Holmsgaard
Marita Jensen
Rebecca Koerner
Julie Leth
Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig
Emma Norsgaard

Elite women time trial
Emma Norsgaard
Rebecca Koerner

Mixed Relay Team Time Trial
Mikkel Bjerg
Magnus Cort
Mathias Norsgaard

Amalie Dideriksen
Emma Norsgaard
Julie Leth.

Kasper Asgreen:
tdf21st20tt

 

swiss
Switzerland Worlds Team: Hirschi, Küng and Bissegger
The Swiss squad for the World Cycling Championships in Flanders has been revealed. Stefan Küng and Marc Hirschi lead the men’s road team, while the brand new European time trial champion is also going for gold in the time trial. Stefan Bissegger is the second time trialist on behalf of Switzerland.

The Swiss road team is six men. In addition to Küng, Hirschi and Bissegger, Silvan Dillier, Fabian Lienhard and the experienced Michael Schär are also allowed to report for the road race between Antwerp and Leuven. Among the women there is also a six-member selection, led by speed skaters Marlen Reusser and Elise Chabbey. Striking name is that of Sina Frei. The mountain bike star won silver at the Olympics and is the reigning World Short Race Champion.

The Mixed Relay team time trial also takes the Alpine country seriously. Küng and Bissegger are part of the men’s team, along with promise Mauro Schmid. The women’s team consists of Reusser, Chabbey and Nicole Koller.

Switzerland squad for the 2021 World Championships
Road race elite men

Stefan Bissegger
Silvan Dillier
Marc Hirschi
Stefan Küng
Fabian Lienhard
Michael Schär

Elite men time trial
Stefan Bissegger
Stefan Küng

Road race elite women
Caroline Baur
Elise Chabbey
Sina Frei
Nicole Koller
Marlen Reusser
Noemi Rüegg

Elite women time trial
Marlen Reusser

Mixed Relay Team Time Trial
Stefan Bissegger
Stefan Küng
Mauro Schmid

Marlen Reusser
Elise Chabbey
Nicole Koller.

Marc Hirschi – Outside bet:
Hirschi Bauke Mollema

 

canada
19 Athletes to Represent Canada at Road World Championships in Belgium
A strong and experienced team of nineteen riders will represent Canada at the 2021 UCI Road Cycling World Championships in Flanders, Belgium, from September 19-26, in the road race and time trial events across the Junior, U23 and Elite categories.

Canada qualified to enter six riders in the Elite men’s road race. The team will be led by Olympians and WorldTour professionals Hugo Houle, Antoine Duchesne and Guillaume Boivin, who was crowned Canadian road champion on Saturday. They will be joined by development riders Ben Perry, Nickolas Zukowsky and Pier-André Côté. Houle, who became Canadian ITT champion on Friday, will be competing in the time trial alongside Zukowsky. Michael Woods and James Piccoli both declined their selection to the road race, while Rob Britton declined selection to the time trial.

On the women’s side, Canada qualified three spots and the team will be made up of the same athletes who represented Canada at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games: Karol-Ann Canuel, Leah Kirchmann and Alison Jackson. The two former team time trial world champions will be competing in both the time trial and road race, while Simac Ladies Tour stage winner and two-time 2021 Canadian champion Jackson will be joining them for the road race.

Due to the lack of points-scoring opportunities during the pandemic, Canada only qualified one starter in the U23 men’s road race. Raphael Parisella will apply the experience he gained during the Tour de l’Avenir in the road race and will also compete in the time trial alongside Francis Juneau.

Both the men’s and women’s Junior squads will be heading into the event in peak form after training in Europe and competing at several high-profile international races over the last month. The men’s field will see incredible depth, with junior world points race champion Dylan Bibic, Michael Leonard, Matisse Julien, and Quentin Cowan all having achieved podium results in European road races this season. We can also expect aggressive riding from the women’s team of Nicole Bradbury, Lilly Ujfalusi, Dylan Baker and Isla Walker, with the four athletes leaving a strong impression in their pre-Worlds races in Spain and The Netherlands.

“Our development athletes have really shown that they are fierce competitors who can apply what they learn at each new race,” said Cycling Canada’s Elite Road Manager, Shawn Clarke. “The growth we’ve seen in the past few weeks is impressive and we can expect to see an exciting race from them at Worlds.”

The world championships begin on Sunday, September 19 with the Elite men’s time trial, and conclude on Sunday, September 26th, with the Elite men’s road race.

Team Canada [TT – Time Trial, RR – Road Race]

Elite Men
Guillaume Boivin – Montreal, QC [RR]
Pier-André Côté – Levis, QC [RR]
Antoine Duchesne – Saguenay, QC [RR]
Hugo Houle – Sainte-Perpétue, QC [TT, RR]
Ben Perry – St.Catharines, ON [RR]
Nickolas Zukowsky – Ste-Lucie-des-Laurentides, QC [TT, RR]

Elite Women
Karol-Ann Canuel – Gatineau, QC [TT, RR]
Alison Jackson – Vermilion, AB [RR]
Leah Kirchmann – Winnipeg, MB [TT, RR]

Under-23 Men
Francis Juneau – La Prairie, QC [TT]
Raphael Parisella – Boucherville, QC [TT, RR]

Junior Women
Dylan Baker – London, ON [RR]
Nicole Bradbury – Hamilton, ON [TT, RR]
Lilly Ujfalusi – New Westminster, BC [TT, RR]
Isla Walker – Victoria, BC [RR]

Junior Men
Dylan Bibic – Mississauga, ON [TT, RR]
Quentin Cowan – Calgary, AB [RR]
Michael Leonard – Oakville, ON [TT, RR]
Julien Matisse – Laval, QC [RR].

Guillaume Boivin:
Guillaume Boivin

 

deceuninck
Deceuninck – Quick-Step Ready for a Trio of Belgian races
Julian Alaphilippe and Fabio Jakobsen will be among the riders in action for the Wolfpack.

A busy weekend looms on the horizon for our team, who will be involved in three one-day races – Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen, Primus Classic and Gooikse Pijl – which the Wolfpack has won a total of six times at the previous participations. Of these, two will be perfectly suited to the sprinters, although the weather and strong winds could alter the dynamic, while the Primus Classic promises to be an affair between the puncheurs, who will take on a 197.7km course peppered with 18 climbs, the last of which will be crested 20 kilometres from the finish.

Only the eighth Dutchman in history to have won the points classification in a Grand Tour, Fabio Jakobsen will return to competition for the first time since concluding La Vuelta with three stage victories and the green jersey in the bag. The 25-year-old is set to lead the team at Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen, a race won by our team on four occasions, where he will be joined by Tim Declercq, Ian Garrison, Mikkel Honoré, Florian Sénéchal, Bert Van Lerberghe and stagiaire Stan Van Tricht, who recently won Gullegem Koerse.

Two days later, Jakobsen will have another chance of fighting for a good result at the 199km Gooikse Pijl, where Omloop Het Nieuwsblad champion Davide Ballerini and Zdenek Stybar will replace Honoré and Sénéchal, who will instead race Primus Classic.

The 23rd edition of that event will start from Brakel and finish in Wespelaar and is where World Champion Julian Alaphilippe – fresh off the Tour of Britain, which he concluded a solid third, while helping the Wolfpack win the team classification – is set to make his final outing in the rainbow jersey he conquered last year in Imola. Rounding out the Deceuninck – Quick-Step team for Saturday’s appointment will be Andrea Bagioli, Ballerini, Garrison and Stybar.

“For Koolskamp and Gooikse Pijl, we have a fair chance of fighting for a good result with Fabio, who had a great La Vuelta and will rely on an experienced lead-out train, but also on a very strong team capable of controlling the races. Saturday, Julian will show his beautiful rainbow jersey in the Primus Classic, a race that includes a local lap in Overijse, which will be a good test for the riders doing the World Championships. Overall, we head into the weekend with a lot of motivation and confidence that we will get some good results in the three races”, said Deceuninck – Quick-Step sports director Geert Van Bondt.

17.09 Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen (BEL) 1.1
Riders:

Sam Bennett (IRL)
Tim Declercq (BEL)
Ian Garrison (USA)
Fabio Jakobsen (NED)
Florian Sénéchal (FRA)
Bert Van Lerberghe (BEL)
Stan Van Tricht (BEL).
Sports Director: Geert Van Bondt (BEL).

18.09 Primus Classic (BEL) 1.Pro
Riders:

Julian Alaphilippe (FRA)
Andrea Bagioli (ITA)
Davide Ballerini (ITA)
Ian Garrison (USA)
Mikkel Honoré (DEN)
Florian Sénéchal (FRA)
Zdenek Stybar (CZE).
Sports Director: Geert Van Bondt (BEL)

19.09 Gooikse Pijl (BEL) 1.1
Riders:

Davide Ballerini (ITA)
Tim Declercq (BEL)
Ian Garrison (USA)
Fabio Jakobsen (NED)
Zdenek Stybar (CZE)
Bert Van Lerberghe (BEL)
Stan Van Tricht (BEL).
Sports Director: Geert Van Bondt (BEL).

Sam Bennett to ride the Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen?
bennett

 

vuelta22
The 77th Edition of La Vuelta will take Place From the 19th of August to the 11th of September 2022, with an Official Departure from the Netherlands
La Vuelta 22 will take off on the 19th of August with a team time trial through the streets
of the Dutch city of Utrecht. The second stage will be held on the 20th of August between
‘s-Hertogenbosch and Utrecht. On Sunday the 21st of August, the peloton will continue
to ride through the North Brabant Region in a circuit stage, both commencing and
concluding at Breda. The team presentation will take place on Thursday the 18th of
August in the centre of Utrecht. This act will inaugurate Holland’s official La Vuelta
departure.

vuelta22

La Vuelta 22 will pass through 34 Dutch municipalities over three stages. The local organising committee, led by the cities of Utrecht, Breda and ‘s-Hertogenbosch and the provinces of Utrecht and North Brabant, is made up of a group of public institutions led by Sharon Dijksma, Mayor of Utrecht. “We have finally an official date. We were looking forward to get back on track with La Vuelta Holanda’s project and now we can’t wait to get back to work. We’re putting together a wonderful program for residents and businesses as well as for all our international guests. Our aim is to further reinforce the special link that already exists between Spain and the Netherlands”.

vuelta22

This vision is shared by Javier Guillén, General Manager of La Vuelta: “We’re establishing new dates for a project with almost 6 years of work behind it. These extra months of waiting haven’t reduced one bit our eagerness to work together, nor the enthusiasm and ambition we have put into organising this official departure from the very first day. This departure will go down in history, marking an important milestone for both Spanish and Dutch cycling”.

vuelta22

A Vast Activity Program
The activity program connected with the official departure of La Vuelta from Holland will
commence much earlier. The events that have been designed to entertain the regions and
cities visited by the race will begin several months before it takes off, making the La Vuelta Holanda project a concept that goes far beyond just the three days during which it will host the stages. The organising committee has woven a contact network featuring sports clubs, schools, cultural institutions and local entrepreneurs in order to build a vast idea and activity program revolving around cycling, a healthy urban lifestyle and sustainability.

The official departure of La Vuelta from Holland also coincides with a very special occasion for the city of Utrecht, which celebrates 900 years since it was officially recognised as a
city.

Dutch Vuelta winners, Joop Zoetemelk and Jan Janssen:
vuelta22

 

roubaix
Paris-Roubaix 2021: Such a Long Wait
Between the victory of Philippe Gilbert in Roubaix in the spring of 2019 and the following edition, for which the pretenders to the crown will take starter’s orders on 3rd October in Compiègne, no less than 903 days will have passed… Due to the necessary postponements obliged by the health crisis, “la Pascale” has never worn one of its nicknames so badly, but fate has placed an unprecedented campaign through Flanders in the heart of autumn, with the race for the World Champion’s rainbow jersey taking place one week before not far away. For its return to the cycling calendar, Paris-Roubaix has undergone some slight adjustments. It is never trivial to take an interest in changes that affect the first part of the route, bearing in mind that on the last 16 editions, the race has been won three times by a member of the morning’s breakaway (Magnus Backstedt in 2004, Stuart O’Grady in 2007 and Mathew Hayman in 2016). It is precisely the arrangement of these first cobbled sections that has been modified. The riders will be given the shakes for the first time, as usual, after one hundred kilometres from the start in Compiègne, but unlike in 2019, the Troisvilles section will be ridden in its 2.2-km entirety. Well-known by regulars, the Vertain section (#25) will be tackled in the opposite direction as it usually is and will spice up the race, because this time the riders will have to climb up it. The bumpy ride through Cambrésis and the area south of Valenciennes will also reintroduce the riders to the section at the Hameau du Buat (#24), discovered in 2005, which has not featured on the route since 2016. After leaving this cobbled section that winds over more than a kilometre, there will be a thirty-kilometre gap to prepare for the challenge of the Trouée d’Arenberg (km 162,4), which often witnesses key developments in the race, just as on the other significant sections at Mons-en-Pévèle (after 209.1 km) and the Carrefour de l’Arbre (after 240.5 km).

roubaix
Men’s Roubaix profile

The major new feature on Paris-Roubaix 2021 will be the creation of the women’s race, whose start will take place in Denain. Three laps of a circuit through the town will immediately lend a dynamic tone to the contest, which will witness a raising of the stakes as the riders reach the municipality of Hornaing (after 31 km), where the routes of the two races merge. From thereon in, there will be a little more than 85 kilometres separating the participants from the vélodrome de Roubaix cycling stadium and the outcome of this historic battle, whose decisive phases will perhaps take place on the two sections with the highest classification of difficulty: Mons-en-Pévèle and the Carrefour de l’Arbre, which have decided the destinies or sealed the fates of Paris-Roubaix riders through the generations.

roubaix
Women’s Roubaix profile

Paris-Roubaix Challenge – Saturday, September, 2nd
24 hours before the elite race and a few hours before Paris-Roubaix Femmes, a peloton of amateur riders will measure themselves on this legendary spring classic and its fabled cobblestone sectors. Three distances are on offer to cyclists, in order to accommodate all the preparation levels: 70, 107 and 145 kms. Every rider will find an appropriate legend.
Information and registration here and on timeto.com.

Key points:

  • After a one-and-a-half-year delay caused by the health crisis which has shaken up sporting schedules, starter’s orders on the 118th edition will eventually be given in Compiègne on 3rd October at 11.00, for a 257,7-kilometre route including 55 kilometres of cobbles spread over 30 sections (as opposed to 54.5 km and 29 sections in 2019). The cobble specialists will notably have to tackle the ascent of the sloped section at the Hameau du Buat.
  • 2021 will also be the year that witnesses the first edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes, on 2nd October. The women’s pack will start from the Northern French town of Denain to cover a 116.4-km route with 17 cobbled sectors and the same last 85 kilometres as the men’s race, including the prestigious finish at the vélodrome de Roubaix cycling stadium.
  • The cobbles are coming:
    roubaix

     

    tormans
    Tormans – Circus Cyclo Cross Team Promotes Two Young Talents
    Tormans-Circus Cyclo Cross Team welcomes two young talents this winter. Marie Schreiber and Joran Wyseure step up from development team Tormans-Acrog Balen BC.

    18 year old Marie Schreiber will start in the U23 category this winter and joins Shana Maes as a seconds woman on the team. The multiple cyclocross, road and time trial Luxembourg champion in the junior category didn’t receive many opportunities to show herself during the Covid period, but with a 2nd place in the only World Cup of the season in Tabor behind teammate Zoe Backstedt and top 20 places in international elite races, Schreiber has shown her capacities. The resident from Luxembourg also finished 7th at the Junior European Road Championships in 2020 and is determined to stand out in her first season in the U23 category.

    Joran Wyseure made a good impression at the end of last season by finishing twice in the top 10 in the elite category in Gullegem and Sint-Niklaas. The rider from Lichtervelde was rewarded with a first selection for an international championship and confirmed with a 12th place at the U23 World Championships. The winter before, the 20 year old talent showed promising results in hilly races such as Ronse (3rd), Boom (5th) and the Koppenberg (7th).

    Next to two newcomers, Tormans Cyclo Cross Team extended the contracts of Swiss champion Kevin Kuhn, Frenchman U23 rider Théo Thomas and Shana Maes.

    Marie Schreiber: “The best period of the year is coming and I can’t wait to pin my first number on my new jersey from Tormans – Circus Cyclo Cross Team! After a year with little races because of the Covid pandemic, I’m looking forward to my next challenge. The step up to the U23 category won’t be easy, so I’m curious to know how I will deal with this new difficulty. I can’t predict how I will perform in my new category, but I want to be ready from the first World Cups in the USA. After a couple of races, we’ll know more and we’ll set goals towards the World Championships. Thanks to the team training camp in Livigno I had an optimal preparation. It’s an honour to be coached individually and learn from the pros in our team at the same time. I progressed well since I can rely on the support of the Wellens brothers and I hope to continue this with the pro team!”

    Joran Wyseure: “After months of support from the team, I am finally officially a member of the Tormans – Circus Cyclo Cross Team! I’m very happy to join the team, because working together has already paid off last winter. When the Wellens brothers noticed my performances in the colours of Tormans – Acrog, I was welcomed with open arms at the team training sessions and I could rely on coaching during the races. I’m determined to continue the hard work and pursue progress. Last winter, it wasn’t always easy to battle with the professional riders, but I was nevertheless able to show myself and I’m convinced that I’m taking this experience to the upcoming season. I’m looking forward to race for the podium in the U23 category with my teammates this season. I already realised that the professional approach and relaxed atmosphere within the team provide excellent circumstances!”

    Bart Wellens: “Marie Schreiber is definitely one of the young upcoming talents in the women’s category. Just like the other riders of her age, she didn’t have many opportunities to show herself. But the little results she can present are very promising. With her teammate Zoë Backstedt she dominated the only junior World Cup in Tabor. Although we don’t put pressure on her, I expect her to break through soon in the U23 category. For the development of this young rider, we strive towards an optimal balance between individual coaching and training in the slipstream of our men. I’m looking forward to watch Marie battle against the Dutch talents!”

    “I’m convinced that Joran will grab his chance with Tormans – Circus Cyclo Cross Team with both hands. It was clear immediately that this talented cyclocross rider has a character with great perseverance and an exceptional commitment. These qualities were of great importance last winter, as he had to battle against the pros each race. It was nice to follow his performances in this particularly difficult period, topped of with 12th place at the U23 World Championships. Last year, he developed by training with Quinten Hermans and Corné van Kessel and I’m convinced that he will continue taking advantage from our collective training sessions, in which he can push his limits.”

    Composition Tormans – Circus Cyclo Cross Team:
    Men Elite:

    Quinten Hermans (BEL)
    Kevin Kuhn (SUI)
    Thomas Mein (GBR)
    Corné van Kessel (NL)

    Women Elite:
    Shana Maes (BEL)

    Men U23:
    Théo Thomas (FRA)
    Emiel Verstrynge (BEL)
    Joran Wyseure (BEL)

    Women U23:
    Marie Schreiber (LUX)

    tormans

     

    ef nippo
    Merhawi Kudus to join EF Education-Nippo in 2022
    EF Education-NIPPO is proud to announce the signing of Merhawi Kudus. The Eritrean brings his climbing expertise to the team’s roster.

    “I am a climber,” Kudus says. “I can climb for GC or I can climb to support someone for GC, but I am definitely a climber,” he laughs. Hailing from the Eritrean capital of Asmara, which sits at over 2,000 meters elevation, perhaps it’s no surprise he’s so comfortable in the mountains.

    “I like to ride because it’s so common, so popular where I’m from, it’s just the obvious thing to do,” Kudus says. Not only is cycling a vital form of transportation in Eritrea, it’s also the country’s most popular sport with races shutting down streets in the capital city most weekends. “My cousin was a local amateur rider,” he recalls. “I went to see him in races and I looked up to him.”

    Years later, Kudus is now the rider that everyone looks up to.

    His palmarès are impressive – a slew of GC podiums and stage results in races from Asia to Africa to Europe – but the 27-year-old believes he has more to give. “I think this team is the right place to explore my full potential,” he says. “Here, I can achieve more, but I cannot do it alone. With teamwork you can achieve more and go further than you imagine and I have always seen strong teamwork within EF. I believe in the team’s spirit.”

    “He’s a rider I was looking at for a long time and the pieces fell together,” says team CEO Jonathan Vaughters. “I’m really excited to have him on the team. He really wanted to be on this team and that’s something that really means a lot to me when somebody says ‘this is the team I want to be at because I feel like you guys are the ones that are going to take me furthest in my career.’ That’s music to my ears especially when I hear that from a guy like him because he’s had to break his way into cycling the tough way.”

    Kudus is an ideal fit with the team’s ethos. “I enjoy meeting people from different cultures,” he explains. “Yes, I like to ride and train hard and race and all the stuff that is part of the job, but with that comes laughing and traveling and enjoying which I like to share with new people.”

    Looking ahead to the 2022 season, Vaughters envisions a clear path for the Eritrean. “I see him focused on mountain jerseys and stage wins,” says Vaughters. “He can also do well in week-long stage races. And he’ll be great to help out guys that have GC ambitions. He’s a rider that can make that critical group of 20 to 30 riders in the mountains and be there to support.”

    Kudus is open to new goals and challenges. “I want to support the team and also ride for myself, whatever that looks like,” he says. While he hasn’t yet decided which races he will target next season, he knows his ultimate goal. “A stage victory in the Tour de France, that is the ultimate dream.”

    Since joining the school mountain biking team as a 14-year-old, Kudus has raced all over the world and been away from home for much of his life. While that can be hard, he doesn’t hesitate to say what makes it worth the sacrifice. “Cycling is my community, no matter where I am,” he says.

    We couldn’t be happier to welcome you to the team, Merhawi.

    Natnael Berhane and Merhawi Kudus:
    Natnael Berhane Merhawi Kudus

     

    israel
    Two Years More for Ben Hermans at Israel Start-Up Nation
    Ben Hermans has signed a new contract with Israel Start-Up Nation. The 35-year-old Belgian won the Giro del Appennino, the Tour of Norway and the individual time trial in the Tour Poitou-Charentes this season. Hermans will have his fifth and sixth season with the WorldTour team. “Proof that I feel very comfortable here,” he said in a press release.

    In an earlier interview with WielerFlits, the Belgian had already indicated that he would like to stay. “I like the atmosphere in the team and I am happy with the equipment that our sponsors are making available. I didn’t want to change teams at all in 2022. I’m also far from done, but I’m ambitious for the future. I’m sure I’ll find great goals in 2022 and 2023. I’m more than happy that the team has given me another confidence, now for the next two years. I want to make the most of that.”

    Team manager Kjell Carlström is also happy that Hermans is staying longer, who he believes has developed into a winner with his team. “Ben has found the place where he can really perform well. We look forward to seeing him achieve even more great success. With Ben we want to achieve all the goals of the team and himself.”

    Ben Hermans:
    arctic21 st3

     

    bora
    Rolf Aldag to be New Sports Manager at BORA-hansgrohe
    At BORA-hansgrohe, the broom will not only go through the rider roster after this season, but also through the management. According to Radsport-News.com, sports directors Enrico Poitschke, André Schulze and Steffen Radochla may leave after years of service. Rolf Aldag will become the new sporting manager.

    Several sources reported to the German media that Poitschke, Schulze and Radochla will no longer be in the staff of BORA-hansgrohe in 2022. As the new sports manager, the WorldTour team will have former cyclist Rolf Aldag at the helm. That role is currently filled by Poitschke. Aldag works at Bahrain Victorious, but will make the switch. Former pros Torsten Schmidt (49) and Enrico Gasparotto (39) are said to be the other team leaders of BORA-hansgrohe. Schmidt has a past as a sports director at Katusha-Alpecin and now works as a youth trainer active in the North Rhine-Westphalia region. Gasparotto is sports director at Nippo-Provence-PTS, a continental team connected with EF Education-Nippo.

    BORA-hansgrohe doesn’t want to confirm, but also not deny the changing of the guard in management. The team does announce that Jan Valach is leaving together with the Peter Sagan camp. “That’s why we have to look around us. Nothing has been decided about that yet,” said press officer Ralph Scherzer.

    aldag

     

    ineos grenadier
    Inside the Tour of Britain 2021 | INEOS Grenadiers Off-Script | Behind the Scenes Highlights
    Join us behind the scenes at Tour of Britain 2021 in the latest episode of INEOS Grenadiers Off-Script.

     


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