What's Cool In Road Cycling

EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

Everyone is looking forward to the racing restarting. Doctor says COVID-19 doesn’t affect the heart – Top Story. Lots of riders talk new season, Marcel Kittel could have joined Jumbo-Visma, Froome and his future, Contador on Quintana, Carapaz on Movistar, Keisse wants a contract, Van Asbroeck has a contract, Soler for the Tour, Villalobos suspended, return of the Maastricht 6 Days, The Challenge of Stars, Bahrain McLaren Train as One, BEAT news and USA Cycling Return to Riding. Stay safe.

top story
TOP STORY: Cardiologist says there is no evidence that COVID-19 causes problems with the heart
The UCI is not taking any risk with its medical protocol, as any rider with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection is asked to perform additional tests to determine if there are any heart defects. Flemish cardiologist Marc Gewillig is critical of this approach. “There is no evidence that the virus causes heart problems. A cold is just as dangerous.”

“More research is needed on COVID-19, but the preliminary findings still seem to indicate some heart muscle sensitivity,” said Lotto Soudal team doctor Jens De Decker. The team already had its Belgian riders take blood tests last week. None of them tested positive for the virus, but the next step was a heart test. Because viral infections (mumps, flu and therefore also Corona) can cause inflammation and affect organs such as the heart.

In doing so, cells are broken down, which can lead to scar tissue growth. That, in turn, can be the cause of arrhythmias. Therefore, the UCI does not want to take any risks and requires cardiological examinations on any rider suspected or effectively infected with COVID-19. But cardiologist Marc Gewillig of UZ Leuven thinks this approach is exaggerated. “There is a risk, like with any viral infection, but it is no greater than the chance of having an airplane crash on your head while cycling. The corona patients diagnosed with heart problems are mainly old, fat men,” he told Het Laatste Nieuws.

“You cannot extrapolate that data to healthy young athletes. I make it a caricature, but you can’t compare a young top athlete with a 65+ who hasn’t seen his toes in years because his guts gets in the way. There is no evidence that COVID-19 causes significant problems with the heart. Right now, a snotty nose is equally dangerous. These are exceptions from exceptions from exceptions.”

Gewillig says to look at the matter from a broader perspective. “I don’t know how much this will cost, but it would be better to invest the time, money and energy in compulsory teaching the ABC of First Aid. If every rider, team DS and coach can deliver the first care and chest compressions, we will save more lives. I suspect the results of all those tests will be sad.”

One of the few riders to contract COVID-19 – Fernando Gaviria:
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trek segafredo
Nibali for the Giro, Mollema to ride Tour and Vuelta
Bauke Mollema is one of the leaders of Trek-Segafredo in the 2020 Tour de France. The Dutch rider shares that role with Richie Porte. A month later, Mollema will then be looking for stage wins in the Vuelta a España. Vincenzo Nibali will focus on the Giro d’Italia.

“My goals for the rest of this season are basically the same,” said Mollema. “I look forward to racing again. Until now I mainly had to stay fit, but with a new calendar we can work towards our goals. It will be a busy month, but I hope I can make the fans cheer again.”

Porte doesn’t know what to expect from a Tour in September. “I don’t expect it to get as hot as normal, but the weather can be more erratic in the mountains,” he predicts. “The fire has started up again towards the Tour, but if you have not been able to cycle on the road for nine weeks, it does shock the body. You need a goal in cycling, so it’s good that we can work towards something now.” Mollema and Porte will return to action during the Tour de l’Ain in France, scheduled for August 7-9, if everything goes as planned.

Vincenzo Nibali will lead Trek-Segafredo, with fellow countryman Giulio Ciccone. “This calendar brings a wave of positivity and optimism into a very difficult season,” said the Shark of Messina. “A schedule full of events awaits us in just three months. We have to do everything to get ready. I focus on a mainly Italian program in which the Giro is central. I am also waiting for news about the World championships.”

Nibali plans to go on an altitude training camp in July. He is looking forward to novelties such as autumn climbs in the Giro and Milan-San Remo in August. “But I like new challenges. From the first altitude training in July, I can fully immerse myself for four months. I am motivated and optimistic that we can race again,” said Nibali, who should start his season on August 1 in Strade Bianche.

Nibali in Paris-Nice this year:
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bahrain
Mikel Landa is Preparing for Tour de France
Mikel Landa met several Spanish sports journalists online on Thursday afternoon. The first point discussed was the end of lockdown and the start of a return to normal life. “The first thing I did – said Mikel – was to go uphill near my house and I remember a strong feeling of freedom.”

The Basque rider has started training gradually again without excessive workloads: “During the lockdown, I tried to maintain my fitness, and now I’m starting to work on intensity and endurance. I feel like I did in December – today to give an example, I trained for 5 hours. Mine and the team’s focus is to make us ready for when we return to the races.”

The first major goal remains the Tour de France which will leave Nice on Saturday, August 29. “I hope the audience can be part of the show; a closed-door Tour would have a different taste. We have yet to agree on the races preceding the Grande Boucle, but the ideal route is the one that passes through the Critèrium du Dauphinè which starts on August 12.”

On the team’s performance at the start of the Grande Boucle, Mikel has a clear idea: “We will be one of the strongest and best-equipped teams to try and win. Together with me, there will be excellent runners such as Wout Poels, Dylan Teuns, Pello Bilbao and the Ivan Garcia Cortina.” On the first months in the new team, Mikel said: “I am very happy with how I am working with the team; these are the most important years of my career, and I am aware of being in a squad that wants to achieve important goals.”

The Vuelta 2020 starts from the Basque Country, and Mikel commented that he would consider being at the departure. “I like the route with many climbs and many stages in Northern Spain. I would like to be at the start, but I will decide only after the Tour.”

Finally, Mikel commented on the difficult season, “We hope that the worst has passed and we look to the future with confidence. We now have a race calendar, and in a year that’s been as unusual as this it’s important to finish the season by competing.”

Landa having a chat:
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jumbo-visma
Jumbo-Visma Had a Place for Marcel Kittel
It’s now a year since Marcel Kittel had his last race as a professional rider. He left Katusha-Alpecin and finished his career. For a while a contract with Jumbo-Visma was still in the air, but the German chose a life away from the bicycle.

“It was clear to me that last year that team was the only option if I wanted to continue,” said Kittel in an extensive interview with the AD. “I had the best option on the table. And that makes it even more understandable how important it was for me to find out what I really wanted. In the end, I made the decision to quit, not because I had to, but because I wanted to.”

The 32 year-old German, celebrated his birthday last week, is impressed by Jumbo-Visma. “The development is incredible and the result of consistent policy and clear values ​​such as team interest and the athlete at the centre. They recognise what else is needed to deliver peak performance. That goes beyond just physical strength, but also psychology. It is fair to say that it is not only the work of Merijn Zeeman.”

Kittel and Zeeman worked together at Skil-Shimano and Argos-Shimano. “But when I talk to Tony Martin, for example, I hear that Merijn is really one of the key figures in the team. He pleases everyone, but is also the one who answers honestly or gives feedback. He tries to understand riders and make them better. That is the Merijn I got to know in 2011.”

Marcel Kittel at the 2019 Tour de France:
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ineos
Chris Froome Talks of His Future
Is Chris Froome staying with Team Ineos this year? The four-time Tour winner still does not want to respond to the latest rumours, but broke the silence on Tuesday. Froome remains tightlipped in conversation with La Gazzetta dello Sport about his future.

Chris Froome may leave Team Ineos midway through the season. The Brit wants to be the leader in the Tour de France this year, but given the competition from Egan Bernal and Geraint Thomas within his own team, he is looking into the possibilities of leaving this summer. Two teams would be open to Froome arriving. For example, Movistar was mentioned in the corridors as a new final destination, but the Spanish formation denied last Sunday that the Tour rider will make the switch to the team this season. Froome himself says nothing about the Eusebio Unzué team.

The 35-year-old rider is busy with his future as a cyclist, he tells La Gazzetta dello Sport. “I have to take many aspects into account, I am now fully involved in that process. I will take new steps in the coming weeks and months,” said Froome, who is further down the line.

“I hope to have a clearer picture of my future by then. Then all discussions are over and we know where we are.” Team Ineos previously announced that there will be no transfer for Froome during the season. “He will continue to race for us in 2020.”

Chris Froome:
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arkea
Alberto Contador Thinks Nairo Quintana Can Still Win the Tour
Nairo Quintana hopes to finally win his first Tour de France this year, but the question is whether the Colombian is still able to win the most important race of the season. “I still believe in it,” said Alberto Contador said to AS. “His start to the season was nothing short of impressive.”

Quintana appears to be reborn as he wears Arkéa-Samsic jersey this season. The former Movistar rider already won the Tour de la Provence and the Tour des Alpes-Maritimes et du Var and he was the best in the queen stage of Paris-Nice. Contador: “Many people no longer believe in Nairo Quintana, but he really started the season very well.”

“Quintana managed to dominate all the mountain stages and no one was able to follow him. He can still win the Tour de France,” said Contador, who has even more confidence in Egan Bernal. “The top favourite is without a doubt Egan Bernal. He is so very mature, both on and off the bike.”

“I still have the most confidence in Bernal and Chris Froome. Both riders have the potential and know how to win the Tour. I therefore estimate Tom Dumoulin and Primož Roglič a little lower.” The question is whether Bernal and Froome will work together next summer, after previous statements by the Colombian.

Bernal is willing to work for Froome or Geraint Thomas, but will not just put his own ambitions aside. “Even though I’m still young, I’m not going to waste an opportunity to win the Tour de France.” Contador: “It is a champion’s answer. And a champion will not simply give up. He will keep to the agreements made.”

Can Quintana win the Tour?
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ineos
Richard Carapaz: “At Movistar it was as if there was always a knife hanging above you”
Richard Carapaz commented on his time at Movistar in a video interview with athlete Valentí Sanjuan. The Ecuadorian, who now races for Team Ineos, had difficulties in the Giro d’Italia last year with the shared leadership with Mikel Landa. “There were situations in the race that you didn’t know who was riding for whom.”

Carapaz became the winner in 2019 in the Giro, where he shared the leadership with Mikel Landa at Movistar. He found it difficult to race under those conditions. “You never knew if it was your turn tomorrow, or if the team was not waiting for you because the other was the leader. It was as if you were hanging a knife over you and you didn’t know if it would fall today or if it would happen tomorrow. There were situations in the race that you didn’t know who was driving for whom.”

The Ecuadorian thinks he made the right choice by transferring to Team Ineos after last season. “I don’t think what it would have been like if I had stayed with Movistar as a leader. It was the right time and I don’t regret anything. At Ineos, I was told, ‘Richard, we are going to adapt to you, you are not the one who has to adapt to us.’ At Movistar I never had the chance that the group would adapt to me.”

Carapaz speaks highly of his current employer. “Ineos is similar to NASA. When I got here, there were many things that surprised me that I had never experienced before.” First he wants to defend his title in the second part of the season in the Giro d’Italia. “This year I am the only leader of Ineos. With the support of the entire team, it is our ambition to repeat my 2019 success.”

Giro win again for Carapaz?
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deceuninck
Iljo Keisse Doesn’t Want To Go to Any Other Team
Iljo Keisse is at the end of his contract with Deceuninck – Quick-Step. The 37-year-old hopes for an extension, but realises that he will have to prove himself first. “You’re only as good as your last race.”

For the older riders who are at the end of their contract, the corona pandemic is not good news, Iljo Keisse knows that too. “Under normal circumstances, my contact extension might already have been in jugs and jars,” he told Het Nieuwsblad. “I have already spoken to Patrick Lefevere, but it makes sense that he can do nothing now.”

Keisse focused on spring and the Giro. “Those goals have shifted, but now they overlap. So it becomes one or the other. And perhaps I will also ride races for which I normally do not qualify. It is up to me to prove that I am still worth a contract for 2021. I will have to enforce it by bike.”

Keisse says that he does not see himself racing for a team other than Deceuninck – Quick-Step. “Never say never. But I’ve been on this super team for ten years, one of the best teams in the world. Taking a step back becomes difficult. Even if I could earn more with another team, I still want to stay here.”

Iljo Keisse:
Iljo Keisse


Two Years More with Israel for Van Asbroeck
Good news for Tom Van Asbroeck in tough corona times as his contract with Israel Start-Up Nation has been extended by two years, the WorldTour team announced on Monday. Van Asbroeck is in his second season with Israel Start-Up Nation.

“I joined this team because I saw a growing project, but the great thing is that I have continued to grow myself,” said Van Asbroeck, who won Binche-Chimay-Binche last season. “I grew up here and 2019 showed that. When the team came to me a few weeks ago for a contract extension, right in the middle of the corona crisis, that was an easy decision for me. I immediately said yes. I think it is a great honour and a great reward.”

“We are very happy with Tom the last two seasons,” said manager Kjell Carlström. “He is 100% committed, shows insight and helps the team to success. In the classic team and in a Grand Tour he can show his powers. That we keep him is important for the coming years. That is why we offered him a two-year extension.”

Van Asbroeck previously rode for Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise, LottoNL-Jumbo, Cannondale-Drapac and EF Education First.

Tom Van Asbroeck winning in Binche ’19:
Tom Van Asbroeck

movistar
Tour and Vuelta for Marc Soler
Marc Soler, after studying the revised WorldTour calendar, has decided to focus on the Tour de France and the Vuelta a España. “Those are the most important competitions for our team, although we are still waiting for the full calendar,” said the Movistar climber in conversation with sports newspaper Marca.

For Marc Soler, 2020 may be the year of truth as he moves up the ladder at Movistar. The Spanish climber recently saw Nairo Quintana, Mikel Landa and Richard Carapaz leave the team. The 26-year-old Soler will now have to carry the team together with veteran Alejandro Valverde and newcomer Enric Mas.

“I have been enslaved for leaders for years, but now I want to achieve results myself,” said Soler earlier about his new role. The Catalan therefore mainly looks at the upcoming Tour de France. The most important race of the year starts on August 29 in the southern French city of Nice. “It is so important for cycling that the Tour continues.”

Soler: “There are a lot of jobs at stake. If the Tour does not go through, it will be a big blow to cycling and we will have a hard time,” said Soler. The former winner of Paris-Nice is postponing his debut in the Giro d’Italia for a while. “The Giro is no longer an option at all, given the new place on the calendar.”

It promises to be interesting racing months for the blue brigade, since Movistar has attracted no fewer than fourteen new riders. Soler was not worried before after the departure of some figureheads. “I think we can surprise, despite the youthfulness of the selection.”

Marc Soler winning in Mallorca 2020:
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Villalobos Suspended for Adverse Analytical Finding while Racing for Aevolo
The team was notified Monday, May 18, 2020 of a potential anti-doping rule violation committed by Luis Villalobos in 2019 while riding for the Aevolo team. Villalobos is suspended from the team indefinitely.

According to a letter sent from the UCI, the sample was taken out of competition on April 25, 2019 in Lago de Moreno, Mexico, and indicated the presence of GHRP-6 in the rider’s A sample. GHRP-6 is a growth-hormone releasing peptide. Villalobos joined the team on Aug. 1, 2019.

“This team was set up to protect the health and the rights of riders across the sport, particularly the younger riders as they entered the professional level. It’s hugely upsetting for us when these young riders fall under the guidance of amateur doctors and trainers who ultimately ruin their careers,” EF Education First CEO Jonathan Vaughters said Monday, upon learning of the situation.

The team is profoundly disappointed to learn of the potential violation more than a year after the sample was taken and is exploring its legal rights with regard to the extremely delayed notification. Only World Anti-Doping Agency accredited labs are able to test for GHRP-6, and teams are not allowed to use those labs in the internal screening processes of athletes due to potential conflicts of interest.

“If we’d have known, we would not have signed Luis,” Vaughters said. “The burden of this is on the UCI because there is no internal testing program that has access to the level of equipment needed to screen for GHRP-6.”

As noted by the UCI, Villalobos, 21, now has the right to request the opening and analysis of the B sample, which was collected at the same time as his A sample.

“Everyone deserves better. Luis deserved better guidance and mentoring from his past trainers and doctors. And the team deserved better from the UCI than to learn of this situation more than a year after the fact,” Vaughters said. “While it’s encouraging that the system is catching riders, it has to be more transparent and accountable than this. We are going to encourage Luis to not fight this and to tell the truth, whatever that may be.”

Luis Villalobos in the Tour de Provence’20:
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Former Aevolo Rider Villalobos Suspended for Adverse Analytical Finding
Aevolo Cycling is deeply shocked and saddened to hear today’s UCI announcement regarding former rider Luis Villalobos’ positive result for an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for GHRP-6 (Peptide hormones, growth factors, related substances, and mimetics) in an out of competition sample.

“I’m blindsided and heartbroken,” Aevolo team director Michael Creed said. “I want to know how this happened and I hope that Luis can help us with that by being open and honest.”

As a UCI Continental U23 development team, Aevolo is fully committed to clean cycling and has a zero-tolerance policy. The team was unaware until today that the World Anti-Doping Agency was conducting the analysis.

“We have been in a bit of a daze since hearing the news this morning,” co-director Jono Coulter said. “This team prides itself on developing athletes as cyclists and fine young people, this is just a kick in the guts.”

According to the UCI, the sample was collected by the Mexican National Anti-Doping Organisation on April 25, 2019 while Villalobos was riding for Aevolo Cycling. He subsequently transferred to the EF Pro Cycling Team on August 1, 2019. The UCI states Villalobos now has the right to request the opening and analysis of his B sample.

Villalobos on the Utah podium on the right:
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Return of the ‘6 Days’ of Maastricht
The Six Days of Maastricht may return to the calendar within the next two years. Former rider Fred Rompelberg, known for his speed records, has put in the work to bring the race back, it was last held in 2006.

The Maastricht Six Days took place from 1976 to 1987. In the Eurohal, with names such as Patrick Sercu, Eddy Merckx, René Pijnen and Gerrie Knetemann on the start list. The event disappeared due to a shortage of finances and declining visitor numbers. In 2006, the event returned to the MECC thanks to sufficient support from government and business, but the revival turned out to be a one-off because the organisation was unable to balance the budget a year later.

Now there are again plans to revive the six-day, reports De Limburger. After a previous failed attempt in 2009, Rompelberg thinks it will work out now. He wants to have the event back on the calendar next year or at the latest the following year, under strict conditions. “The money, I estimate about 500,000 euros, must be received in advance. The stands and the middle area must be full for six days. That will be quite a task.”

Rompelberg acknowledges that the coronavirus can thwart his plan. “Still, I think the look should be possible in 2022. The 2009 foundation has never been disbanded, I am talking to potential co-organisers and working to find sponsors.”

Fourteen years ago, Bruno Risi and Franco Marvulli won the last Six Days of Maastricht. On the final day, the Swiss pair held off Iljo Keisse and Marco Villa. The Dutch duo Danny Stam/Peter Schep finished third. For Risi and Marvulli, it was the 39th six-day victory.

Risi and Marvulli winning the last ‘6 Days’ of Maastricht in 20016:
maastricht

challenge
The Challenge of Stars: Start List Announced Including Chris Froome
16 of the cycling world’s top names line up for The Challenge of Stars, the virtual tournament in collaboration with BKOOL and with the official partnership of Enel and Tissot, to be raced on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 May.

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Chris Froome is one of the climbers who will line up for The Challenge of Stars

The start list for The Challenge of Stars, the first ever virtual cycling knockout tournament, has been officially announced. Sixteen of the world’s greatest riders – eight climbers and eight sprinters – will compete on 23 and 24 May.

The pros will compete, two at a time, in virtual races through some of the most world-famous Italian locations: the Stelvio and the Tuscan countryside. The characteristics of two different profiles (flat and uphill) will be recreated by the BKOOL software running on the interactive smart trainer with which all the riders will be equipped.

Among the big names set to contend for victory are Chris Froome (Team Ineos), Vincenzo Nibali and Giulio Ciccone (Trek – Segafredo), Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team), Matteo Trentin (CCC Team), Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix), Pascal Ackermann (BORA-Hansgrohe), Warren Barguil (Arkéa–Samsic), Rafał Majka (BORA-Hansgrohe), the UCI Road World Champion Mads Pedersen (Trek – Segafredo), Nacer Bouhanni (Team Arkéa Samsic), Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck – Quick Step), Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal), Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Simon Geschke (CCC Team) and Filippo Ganna (Team Ineos).

Chris Froome said: “At a time like this when we are unable to race it’s great to be able to use technology to put on an event like The Challenge of Stars and bring entertainment to the cycling fans. I’m looking forward to taking on this new type of challenge against some of the top riders in the sport.”

Jakob Fuglsang said: “Certainly given the current situation, with many races that have been canceled or moved, indoor cycling is an excellent alternative to training while waiting to return to competing outdoors. We look forward to being able to ride the races that have been placed on the new international calendar, and in the meantime it is nice to be able to taste a little competition and race other pros virtually, as with The Challenge of the Stars.”

The Two Routes
The sprinters will race a 1.2km course with an average gradient of 0.97% and maximum of 2.53%, while the climbers will face a 2.9km ascent with an average gradient of 8.69% that peaks at 12.75%.

The Stars Set to Compete – The Sprinters / Rouleurs
Pascal Ackermann (BORA-Hansgrohe)
Mads Pedersen (Trek – Segafredo)
Nacer Bouhanni (Team Arkéa Samsic)
Tim Merlier (Alpecin-Fenix)
Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck – Quick Step)
Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal)
Matteo Trentin (CCC Team)
Filippo Ganna (Team Ineos)

The Stars Set to Compete – The Climbers
Rafał Majka (Bora–Hansgrohe)
Vincenzo Nibali (Trek-Segafredo)
Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo)
Warren Barguil (Team Arkéa Samsic)
Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team)
Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal)
Simon Geschke (CCC Team)
Chris Froome (Team Ineos)

climber

The Challenge of Stars on Social Media and on TV
Fans will be able to follow all the build up leading to the tournament’s start on the event’s official social media channels (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). The competition structure and scoreboard and an exciting opportunity to predict the tournament’s two winners (one climber and one sprinter), will be available to all fans before the two-day tournament. In addition, The Challenge of Stars will be broadcast internationally, with VRT Sporza being the event’s host broadcaster.

Jacob Fuglsang spins on his indoor trainer ahead of competing in The Challenge of Stars
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bahrain
Bahrain McLaren Launches ‘Train as One’ Program
Giving fans access to cycling based strengthening and mobility sessions, plus nutrition advice from the team’s experts.

On Friday, May 22nd Team Bahrain McLaren will launch #TrainAsOne, a training program for cyclists and hosted by the team’s experts alongside riders.

The first series, hosted by Team Bahrain McLaren’s lead physiotherapist Alice Rawlinson, will show participants a series of strengthening and mobility exercises that will benefit riders at all levels. Each of the live sessions will also feature a training buddy – one of the team’s riders. Additionally, fans will receive tips on nutrition from the team’s dietitian Laura Martinelli.

“Due to the current circumstances, more and more people are riding bikes to stay fit and healthy, which is great news for the sport. The ‘Train As One’ program is all about helping cyclists get the most out of their time on the bike by giving them insight into the off-bike training we do with our pro riders.” Says Alice Rawlinson, Lead Physiotherapist at Team Bahrain McLaren.

The idea for the program came about from feedback received by staff members who are benefiting from the team’s weekly internal ‘virtual’ training session.

The program starts on May 22nd and consists of two 30-minute sessions a week. To participate, visit Team Bahrain McLaren’s Instagram Live channel at 5 p.m. CET every Monday and Friday from 22nd May until 15th June.

For those who can’t make the live sessions, they can watch them later on Team Bahrain McLaren’s IGTV and Facebook page.

An overview of that participants will learn:
Strengthening and Mobility:

Alice Rawlinson, the team’s lead physiotherapist, has designed an exercise program for cyclists covering all the critical areas, including core control, hip and shoulder strength, and increasing flexibility to name just a few.

Nutrition:
Laura Martinelli, the team’s dietitian with experience of more than 6 years, will cover topics including recovery, managing weight, improving immune system efficiency, hydration during training, and coping with mental fatigue, together with our team’s food partners: Fructal, Polo, So.Group, Dalla Costa, Bristot, SiS.

This program is one of several initiatives that aim to give fans opportunities to get closer to the people who make up Team Bahrain McLaren and be inspired by the sport we love.

bahrain


BEAT Begins Preparations for New Track Season Without Roy van der Berg
After originally announcing a reform of track cycling a year ago without commercial track teams, it now seems that the UCI will allow commercial teams to participate in top-level track cycling. BEAT has held several discussions with the UCI in recent months in which the UCI also expressed its intention to invite commercial track teams to participate at the highest level in 2021.

Although a final decision has not yet been made and parts of the new structure are still unclear, BEAT has decided to begin preparing for its license application for the next track season, until the Olympic Games of 2021. We are currently consulting with the riders, staff, and current and potential partners. What the program and the team will look like for the coming year will become clearer in the next few months. We expect to have the plan in place by August.

Roy van den Berg
Ahead of the new season, Roy van den Berg has indicated that he wishes to fully focus on his place as a starter in the Dutch national selection. We have collectively determined that he will fully focus on the Olympic Games in the coming year and that his role as a starter on the BEAT Track Team is not compatible with this focus.

Van den Berg said: “I owe a lot to BEAT. In 2017 I joined the team and I was able to develop as a starter through the BEAT race program. We have achieved wonderful results in recent years. I am grateful to BEAT for everything they have done for me.”

Geert Broekhuizen, co-founder of BEAT, said: “Roy has made tremendous progress in recent years and has achieved major successes for the club. We are very grateful to him for that. Roy and BEAT will always be able to look back positively on our successful collaboration. We wish him every success in preparing for the Olympics.”

Roy van den Berg:
Roy van den Berg


USA Cycling Releases ‘Return to Riding and Racing Events’ Guidelines and Toolkit
In an industry webinar USA Cycling, the National Governing Body for cycling in the United States, presented guidelines, a toolkit and medical observations from USA Cycling Chief Medical Officer Dr. Michael Roshon and USOPC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jonathan Finnoff.

With the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, USA Cycling hosted a free webinar presenting guidelines and a toolkit for those in event organisation as well as communities hosting cycling events.

USA Cycling shared data insights from a nation-wide rider survey regarding, among other things, what respondents hope to see from events moving forward. USA Cycling also introduced and explained an event risk assessment tool and return to cycling events guidelines derived from those created by the CDC, WHO and, United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC). These resources and the recording of the webinar can be found here.

The webinar also included a live panel with medical experts Dr. Michael Roshon (USA Cycling Chief Medical Officer) and Dr. Jonathan Finnoff (USOPC Chief Medical Officer).

USA Cycling’s current ban on event permits is set to expire on May 31, 2020, and will be replaced with a set of guidelines that will consider local and regional health policies and regulations, the type of activity, and risk to the community and participants. With cycling events now often subject to requirements for mass gatherings and social distancing as set by local health authorities, it is critical that event organisers consider how to make their events safe in the time of COVID-19.

Visit USACycling.org for more information on the athletes, events and membership programs, and follow @USACycling across all channels for the latest on Team USA.

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