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EUROTRASH Thursday: Race, Rider and Team News from the Peloton

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Giro del Veneto and the Sluitingsprijs Putte-Kapellen bring the European road season (nearly) to an end. Reports, results and video. Vaughters critical of UCI relegation system – TOP STORY. Other news: Evenepoel looking at the Tour, Boonen thinks Van Aert could have done better, Repsol to co-sponsor Movistar, Shell to sponsor British Cycling, Gilbert not the new Lotto-Dstny manager, Roglič has surgery, Pauline Ferrand-Prévot joins INEOS Grenadiers, Terpstra’s last race, Romeo debuts with Movistar, Thomas thinks about retirement, McLay extends with Arkea-Samsic, López has nose surgery and Dowsett impressed by Ganna. Team news: DS’s leave INEOS Grenadiers, Kern Pharma extends sponsorship, Movistar and Kern Pharma are exchange deal, Cynisca Cycling announces inaugural roster of talented, young riders and Jumbo-Visma switches to SRAM. Race news: Gilbert to ride Beking Monaco and Flanders Classics announces dates. Plus Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame to induct five new members. Coffee Thursday!

 

top story
TOP STORY: Vaughters Critical of the UCI Relegation System
EF Education-EasyPost no longer has to worry about a possible relegation from the WorldTour, but that doesn’t stop team boss Jonathan Vaughters from being critical of the system in a comments to VeloNews. “Let me be open: I am against promotion/relegation in cycling,” he begins.

“If the teams had a vote on this (they say we had a vote, but I can assure you they didn’t), I would have voted no,” continued Vaughters. According to him, the current system is “destructive” to the sport. “It affects athletes. It destroys teams. It takes the value of the sport down. And it encourages doping.”

“I realise that statement could become an article headline, but I would point out that fair play is often compromised when desperate situations arise in the sport,” said the team boss. “The system takes care of all the things mentioned, because (like doping) it causes widespread instability: sponsors no longer feel safe in cycling and teams are falling apart. Sponsors don’t want to go from one team to another, looking for a stable platform that actually plays in the WorldTour.”

Vaughters says he understands the proponents of the system. “It opens up the top level of the sport to new sponsors, new ideas, new people. It keeps teams from resting on their laurels,” he sums up their argument, before saying it “doesn’t work like that”. He states that sponsors probably no longer know which team is telling the truth if they say they are riding the Tour de France. As a result, these lenders will slowly but surely withdraw from the sport.

According to Vaughters, all teams are fighting for sponsors, when it should actually be the other way around. “We need a climate where new sponsors have to bid to get into the sport. This requires a limited number of teams, which increase the value as a result. We don’t need teams that kill each other by serving the sponsors for the lowest possible price. Of course, teams are already fighting for sponsors, but this system takes it even further.”

In the remainder of his commentary, Vaughters proposes leverage points for a new system. A form of promotion/relegation can remain, he judges, but then some things have to change. For example, the WorldTour teams must compete more often and there must be financial compensation for the teams that relegate, so that they have a fair chance to return to the top division. Furthermore, Vaughters thinks, for example, that the scoring should change, citing as an example that winning a 1.1 race currently yields more UCI points than a stage win in the Tour de France.

Jonathan Vaughters not happy with UCI:
Jonathan Vaughters

 

veneto
Giro del Veneto 2022
Matteo Trentin won the Giro del Veneto on Wednesday. The UAE Team Emirates rider beat Rémy Rochas and Mattéo Vercher from a leading group. Mathieu van der Poel, the big name on the start list, abandoned after 100 kilometres.

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The Giro del Veneto is one of the last Italian one-day races of the year. On the menu was a race of 159.8 kilometres on a hilly course. The race started in Padova and finish in Vicenza with five tough hills.

The first part of the Italian race was relatively flat and a group managed to escape: Ludovic Robeet (Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB), Andrea Pietrobon (EOLO-Kometa), Mattéo Vercher (TotalEnergies) and Matteo Zurlo (Zalf Euromobil Fior). The young Italian Pietrobon was only part of the breakaway for a short time, he crashed and was unable to rejoin the front group. The escapees had a maximum lead of 4 minutes. On the Perarolo, the third climb of the day, Zurlo jumped away from the leading group, but the Italian had a large group behind him, as a number of riders had escaped from the peloton. Miguel Angel López, Matteo Trentin, Diego Ulissi, Jay Vine, Andreas Kron and Natnael Tesfatsion and some other riders, joined Robeet and Vercher. The group of fifteen soon caught Zurlo in no time. The new leading group meanwhile had a 1 minute lead over the peloton. The front riders started the final of the Giro de Veneto with a good lead, but they still had the Arcugnano (2.8km at 4.4%) to climb twice.

In the peloton, the initiative came from the smaller teams; Uno-X and Tudor. The fifteen leaders didn’t lose any time and started the last 10 kilometres with a lead of 40 seconds. An attack by López was caught by home rider Trentin, early breakaway Vercher, Rémy Rochas and Alessandro De Marchi. The five kept the pace high. López tried to avoid a sprint with another attack, but that didn’t work. A late jump by De Marchi and Rochas caused some chaos. Trentin sat tight on Rochas’ wheel and started the sprint from an ideal position. The Italian was clearly the strongest and could raise his hands well before the line. Rochas took second place, Vercher was third. The big star on Wednesday was Mathieu van der Poel. After his third place at the Gravel World Championship on Sunday, the Dutchman started in Padova, but played no significant role in the Giro del Veneto and gave up after 100 kilometres when he passed the team buses.

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Race winner, Matteo Trentin (UAE Team Emirates): “This year, every time my condition was very good, I had problems. At Paris-Nice I fell and suffered cranial trauma. I returned to training, then at the Tour de France I had Covid and went home without racing. So this was my third start. Finally, I had three months with no illness or injury, and my form came. I was 4th last week at Bernocchi, I had asthma at Gran Piemonte, I punctured in a bad moment at Paris Tours. My form was good, but I brought nothing home. My directors Marco Marcato and Fabio Baldato. Baldato lives on the race route, so they knew every metre. And, with the riders we have, it is better to attack than to wait. We had a good pre-race meeting, and, at km 85, in a section of narrow, twisting roads, the whole team went at 100% and split the peloton into groups. I went with every attack, and made the final fifteen. It was normal that everyone was racing against me. De Marchi was the rider I most feared. When he attacked, I knew I had to follow. When Rochas went, I followed, and came out the winner.”

2nd, Rémy Rochas (Cofidis): “On paper it was a race for sprinters who could get over the little climbs. Mid-race, UAE decided to take the race in hand. I covered the moves, and until the final circuit, I tried to use as little energy as possible. Not he final climb. Miguel Angel Lopez attacked, then Trentin. The move lost momentum. The group was down to five riders. In the final, De Marchi attacked. With 500m to go, I knew I had lost, but I kept going and kept my third place.”

3rd, Matteo Vercher (Total Energies): “It was hard. I got into the breakaway early on. We were caught from behind, but I stayed in the group. In the final, I messed it up a bit, but third place isn’t bad for a stagiaire. It was fun to be at the front, and it’s good result for me and the team. It shows that I managed my energies well. I have good form, even if it’s the end of the season.”

4th, Miguel Angel López (Astana Qazaqstan): “Since there were no more climbs in the absolute final phase, I didn’t have many options to win. It was a fast and hard day overall. There was full driving all day, there was no time to recover. However, I felt pretty good and I’m happy to be able to fight for a good result.”

Giro del Veneto Result:
1. Matteo Trentin (Ita) UAE Team Emirates in 3:37:54
2. Rémy Rochas (Fra) Cofidis at 0:01
3. Mattéo Vercher (Fra) TotalEnergies at 0:02
4. Miguel Ángel López (Col) Astana Qazaqstan
5. Alessandro De Marchi (Ita) Israel-Premier Tech at 0:04
6. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates at 0:21
7. Nicola Conci (Ita) Alpecin-Deceuninck
8. Davide Bais (Ita) EOLO-Kometa
9. Alexandre Balmer (Sui) BikeExchange-Jayco
10. Andreas Kron (Den) Lotto Soudal.

Veneto’22:

 

putte
Sluitingsprijs Putte-Kapellen 2022
Arne Marit won the Sluitingsprijs Putte-Kapellen on Tuesday, the traditional end of the Flemish road season. The 23 year-old Belgian was faster than the Dutchman Coen Vermeltfoort in the sprint. Milan Fretin came third.

putte kepellin

Quite a few well-known riders were at the start in Putte, north of Antwerp, for the Putte-Kapellen Sluitingsprijs (Closing Prize). This traditional end of the Flemish road season has not been a UCI race since 2018, but there were a few pros at the start. The participants were faced with 167 flat kilometres, a bunch sprint was expected.

Several riders tried to get away right after the start, in the hope of staying out of the grip of the sprinter’s teams. A leading group of four riders did escape and by the halfway point there was a break of 17 riders. With 15 kilometres to go there was a regrouping and in the last kilometres the peloton got ready for a bunch sprint. In the sprint Arne Marit crossed the line first. The 23 year-old Belgian of Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise just beat the experienced Dutchman Coen Vermeltfoort. Marit has been in excellent shape in recent weeks. He was ninth in the Gooikse Pijl, eleventh in the Sparkassen Münsterland Giro and tenth in the Memorial Rik Van Steenbergen. Marit will ride for Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert next year.

The race was dominated by Iljo Keisse. The 39 year-old looked to have finished his last road race as a pro last Sunday in the Memorial Rik Van Steenbergen. However, Keisse decided to ride Putte-Kapellen on Tuesday. The Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl rider attacked in the final, but was caught. Keisse will stop completely on November 24, when a farewell track meeting is scheduled in the Kuipke.

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The riders will be at a big party after the race.

Sluitingsprijs Putte-Kapellen 2022:
1. Arne Marit (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise
2. Coen Vermeltfoort (Ned) VolkerWessels
3. Milan Fretin (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise
4. Emiel Vermeulen (Bel) Go Sport-Roubaix Lille Métropole
5. Benjamin Declercq (Bel) Arkéa-Samsic
6. Sebastian Larsen (Den) Uno-X Development
7. Tomáš Kopecký (CZ) ABLOC
8. Gil D’heygere (Bel) Minerva
9. Brent Van Der Eycken (Bel) VP Consulting CT
10. Kobe Vanoverschelde (Bel) Tarteletto-Isorex.

Putte-Kapellen’22:

 

quick-step-alpha
Evenepoel: “Tour Will Now Receive Priority, but do Not Rule Out an Intermediate Station in 2023”
Remco Evenepoel will be relaxing on honeymoon after a very successful but also tough season, but the Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl rider looked back on the past few months and ahead in an extensive interview with Het Laatste Nieuws.

Het Laatste Nieuws managed to get Evenepoel and former rider Dirk De Wolf for a double interview, as part of the Kristallen Fiets. Evenepoel looked back on an extremely successful season, but he also spoke of 2023. The big question is whether the rainbow jersey will be in the Tour de France next year. “The ‘Tour de France’ mission will now be given priority. One day I want to win there too, that’s the ultimate dream. Which does not exclude an intermediate station in 2023. So far, the Giro d’Italia looks very nice,” said Evenepoel.

Team manager Patrick Lefevere will also have to take into account the wishes of sprinters Fabio Jakobsen and newcomer Tim Merlier. “Of course I will have to take our two sprinters into account when choosing a Grand Tour. But actually we can divide it neatly,” Evenepoel believes. “You could say: me the Giro, Fabio (Jakobsen) the Tour, Tim (Merlier) the Vuelta.”

The Belgian prefers total leadership in a Grand Tour. “Yes. I like that better. Otherwise you risk division. That also applies to a sprinter, who deserves a strong lead-out, at least two riders. Then the combination becomes difficult, doesn’t it? Fabio and I get along well and in a regular race I like to be part of his sprint train. But in a Grand Tour it is different.”

One thing is certain: Evenepoel will only race one Grand Tour in 2023. Even if the World champion decides to contest the Giro in the spring. “Then it will be the Clásica San Sebastián, World championship and the Tour of Lombardy in the autumn. In the spring I will again ride a limited program, schedule training camps and work on climbing and time trialing. Actually, I can copy-paste my Vuelta preparation every year from now on. Because that has worked well.”

Lefevere said in July that he would rather see Evenepoel ride the Giro d’Italia in 2023, so that his young rider can debut in the Tour de France in 2024. The Giro also seems tailor-made for time trial specialist Evenepoel in 2023, as the Italian tour is said to contain three chronos. In total, sixty to seventy kilometres against the clock.

Giro’23 for Evenepoel?
vuelta22st19

 

belgium
Tom Boonen: “Wout van Aert Could Have Done Better this Year”
Wout van Aert can look back on a successful season with victories in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, the E3 Saxo Bank Classic and the Tour de France, but Tom Boonen nevertheless makes a critical comment in an analysis for Het Laatste Nieuws. “I hear he couldn’t have done better this year, but I don’t agree with that.”

Nine wins. Success in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and the E3 Saxo Bank Classic. Three stages in the Tour de France, with the green points jersey as icing on the cake. Wout van Aert managed to achieved great successes in 2022, but according to Boonen there is still room for improvement. “The only thing missing this year is a Monument, they say. But that’s also all that matters. A rider of his level is racing to win those races.”

“It’s nice to be called the best rider in the World for months, but that’s not the point. Wout has to win classics. Ask him himself: he will also say that that is what he wants. At the same time, I don’t want to be too strict. Wout was having a very nice spring and he had the bad luck that he dropped out due to corona at a crucial moment, just before the Tour of Flanders. The result was hard: once again lost a chance to win the Ronde or Roubaix.”

Boonen emphasises that Van Aert also does not have eternal cycling life. “Make no mistake: meanwhile, the years are ticking. I am convinced that he will still succeed, but will he win the Ronde three times and Roubaix four times? Champions race for those kinds of records.” In addition, that other standard-bearer of Belgian cycling, Remco Evenepoel, has taken a giant step this year with a win in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the Vuelta a España and the World championships.

“Becoming world champion won’t get any easier after this year. Evenepoel has set a serious precedent,” said Boonen. “Last year you had the debacle in Leuven and the quarrel that followed, but at that time Remco was not really a competitor of Wout. He hadn’t been anywhere until this year. There was a clear ranking: Wout was the leader and Remco was still the servant. But in 2022 everything will have changed.”

“Remco will never be under Wout again. That shift is final and also lives at the cycling federation. That might sting Wout – it will excite him in any case. The relationship between Wout and Remco will be interesting to follow. As it is now, it will not always be. But it is certain that they will often meet and often need each other.”

Boonen and Evenepoel:
boonen evenepoel

 

movistar
Repsol to Co-Sponsor Movistar and Double the Budget
The Spanish oil and gas company Repsol will join Movistar Team as a sponsor from 2023, reported Onda Cero. Repsol will double the WorldTour squad’s current budget, according to the Spanish radio station.

2023 would be a transition year for the Spanish team, it is not yet known whether it will also bear the Repsol name. The plan is to set up a top team by 2024, according to Onda Cero. With that goal in mind, it also wants to bring Carlos Rodríguez in. The 21-year-old champion of Spain’s contract with INEOS Grenadiers expires at the end of 2023.

Fernando Gaviria looks like he will be the first transfer for the coming year. The Colombian sprinter, who rode for UAE Team Emirates, has been associated with Movistar.

Repsol and Movistar are already collaborating in other areas. Since last summer, both have owned a fifty percent share in the company ‘Solar 360’, which should help families and companies to switch completely to solar energy. Repsol is also known for MotoGP, where it sponsors Honda (Marquez’s team).

Spanish journalist Jorge Calabrés, who works for Marca Radio, has stated on social media that the rumour is not true. According to him, Abarca Sports, Movistar Team owners, is indeed looking for a co-sponsor, but it will not be Repsol.

Repsol and Carlos Rodríguez for Movistar?
vuelta22st14

 

BritishCycling
Shell to Sponsor British Cycling
British Cycling will be sponsored by Shell UK from next month. The oil company will sponsor the British cycling federation until the end of 2030.

“We look forward to working with Shell UK for the remainder of this decade,” British Cycling CEO Brian Facer said in a press release. “Together, we want to increase access to the sport, support our elite riders, help our organisation and sport, and take important steps towards energy neutrality – things we know our members are passionate about.”

David Bunch, the CEO of Shell UK, says he is ‘proud’ that Shell is becoming an official partner of British Cycling. “The partnership reflects the shared ambitions of Shell UK and British Cycling to become energy neutral in the UK, and to encourage low-emission modes of transport such as cycling or electric transport.”

Shell is also starting a specific project within British Cycling called ‘Limitless’. This program aims to break down the barriers that disabled people have to access cycling.

Shell backing British Cycling:

 

lotto
Gilbert: “I will not be the new manager of Lotto-Dstny”
Now that John Lelangue is leaving Lotto Soudal, the team has to look for a new team manager. The name of Philippe Gilbert has been mentioned. “I can hereby confirm that I will not be the new manager, I don’t feel ready yet,” the 40-year-old Belgian made it clear.

Gilbert, who rode his last race, Paris-Tours last Sunday, said in a video message that he is not yet thinking about a role as manager. “I want to respond to a rumour that is circulating in the cycling world. Yes, it has been discussed. The team introduced me to the role and it was certainly a nice offer, but I don’t feel ready for it at the moment. Maybe in the future, when I have more experience.”

“I always need a goal in my life, but now I first want to have a few months of peace and tranquility and enjoy my new life. Becoming the new Lotto manager comes with a lot of responsibilities, long days and a lot of travel. I can hereby confirm that I will not be the new manager, I do not feel ready yet. Later I will let you know which challenge I will take on, but first I will take advantage of my new life with my family.”

It is not yet clear what Gilbert will do now he has stopped racing. Next Saturday Gilbert will have his farewell party on the Cauberg in Valkenburg. On this famous Limburg climb, he triumphed no less than four times in the Amstel Gold Race and became World champion in 2012.

Gilbert not the next Lotto manager:
lotto

 

jumbo-visma
Primoz Roglič Undergoes Shoulder Surgery
Primož Roglič went under the knife on Monday. The Jumbo-Visma leader underwent surgery on his shoulder in his home country of Slovenia, he said to the radio program Val 202 at the weekend. After the intervention, Roglič will only slowly resume training after six to eight weeks.

“That shoulder needs to be repaired,” Roglič said. “It is no secret that I have dislocated my shoulder several times. It’s not nothing that’s going to happen. They cut off a piece of the bone and moved it to where the shoulder dislocated.”

The recovery will take at least a month and a half, according to the Slovenian. “I have now reached a limit. It needs to be resolved so that I can come back even stronger and prepare for new challenges in the upcoming season,” he continued. “I have to respect what the doctors tell me. We will do everything we can to get me back on my bike as soon as possible.”

As far as Grand Tours are concerned, Roglič will soon want to forget the past season. In the Tour de France he fell hard in the cobblestone stage, he had to put his shoulder back in place himself and his back started to hurt. In the end he had to give up. Roglič also did not finish the Vuelta a España, after a bad crash in the final of the sixteenth stage. At that point he was second behind the eventual overall winner Remco Evenepoel.

Primož Roglič was awarded the Golden Order of Merit by Slovenian President Borut Pahor for his outstanding sports achievements this weekend at a cycling event in the Podravje region.

Roglič has had a shoulder operation:
vuelta22st16

 

ineos
Pauline Ferrand-Prévot Joins INEOS Grenadiers’ Off-Road Roster
The INEOS Grenadiers are delighted to announce that Pauline Ferrand-Prévot will be joining the team on a two-year contract from 2023, supporting the 30 year old French rider’s target to win gold at the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

The four-time World Champion is the latest addition to the growing number of multi-disciplinary athletes racing for the INEOS Grenadiers.

Confirmation of the off-road star’s signing comes after a record-breaking 2022 season which saw Pauline win the short track, cross country and marathon mountain bike World Championships, as well as the inaugural UCI Gravel World Championships. Having also held rainbow jerseys in both road cycling and cyclocross along with mountain biking, makes her one of the most decorated cyclists of all time.

Pauline said: “Signing with the INEOS Grenadiers is a dream for me. I’m super excited to be joining the off-road team and becoming part of a wider group of riders and the INEOS family of athletes. The INEOS Grenadiers’ professionalism is world-renowned and I have always admired the team’s ethos and spirit. To have the 2024 Olympics in Paris is huge for me. I want to be the best rider I can be in front of a home crowd and that will be my main goal over the next two years. An Olympic gold medal is the only one missing from my palmarès so it’s the one I want the most. It was a key reason to join this adventure with the INEOS Grenadiers. I still have a lot of things to learn and it is the best team to help me reach my goal.”

Rod Ellingworth, Deputy Team Principal, welcomed Pauline and praised her talent and dedication: “Signing a world-class rider like Pauline is a huge boost as we grow the number of multi-disciplinary athletes racing as Grenadiers. “Pauline is a unique talent. Her palmarès speaks for itself, especially after just winning four world titles in the space of two months. But what sets her apart and makes her a great addition to the Grenadiers is her drive and grit. She loves the sport and is a natural born racer and that comes through in the way she rides. Pauline is on her own journey to try and win gold at her home Olympics and this is an area where we thrive and have proven success. We are excited to support that ambition and help her achieve her goals over the coming years.”

Reflecting on her season to date and the months coming up, Pauline is still hungry for more racing: “The main goal of the season was to be World Champion in Les Gets. I wanted to prove to myself that I could win in my home country with the increased pressure and media attention that brings. Because of the Paris Olympics in 2024 that was an important test for me, and it went perfectly. I had all my family there so it was really cool to win in front of them all. I have now won four World titles in one year and I’m really happy with that! I’m still feeling super good at the moment and really motivated so I’m looking to start cyclocross again in November and try and become European Champion in Namur. After that I will take a small break and then I want to start cyclocross again and be in the best condition for those World Championships.”

ineos

 

total
Niki Terpstra: Last Place in His Last Race
Niki Terpstra’s career finished after Paris-Tours last Sunday. He made it to the finish, but the experienced rider of TotalEnergies had a bad crash during the race. “For the first ten seconds I thought: this was it. But I also went on too,” he shared his thoughts with NOS.

“It went well until halfway through, but then I crashed and it hurt quite a bit,” said 38-year-old Terpstra, who continued with a scraped hip and eventually crossed the finish line in Tours, 128th and last rider. That was more than 20 minutes after winner Arnaud Démare. “I have never enjoyed cycling again. It doesn’t feel good. I said yesterday it was going to be dangerous, and that’s the dark side of cycling. That is unfortunately part of it.”

Afterwards, Terpstra’s family, wife Ramona and the children, were waiting for him. In addition to Terpstra, Sebastian Langeveld, Philippe Gilbert, Dimitri Claeys also concluded their careers in Paris-Tours.

Niki Terpstra’s last race:
Niki Terpstra

 

movistar
Iván Romeo Makes Professional Debut with Movistar in 2023
The transfer has been in the air for some time, but WielerFlits reports that Movistar will soon announce the transfer of Iván Romeo. The 19-year-old Spaniard rode for Hagens Berman Axeon last season. The youngster turned out to be a solid time trialist. He is said to be signing until the end of 2025.

Romeo had his main results this year in races against the clock. He was 9th in the Spanish time trial championship for professionals, he was 8th at the European U23 time trial and 9th in the Flanders Tomorrow Tour, a Belgian U23 race at the 2.2U level. He owed that final classification to two seventh places, including one in an individual time trial. It shows the engine that is in the Spaniard, who also hopes to shine in the future.

Movistar already had the youngster on the radar in 2021, when he became Spanish champion on the road and time trial as a last-year junior. He also won stages in the Tours of Besaya, Basque Country and Valladolid. He won overall in Valladolid, finishing fifth and third respectively in the other two. Romeo also finished second in the Clásica San Sebastián for juniors last year. Movistar was hesitant to let him make the switch to the pros right away.

The Spanish team missed out on signing Juan Ayuso and Carlos Rodríguez. For Romeo, a big dream is also coming true. He has been a big fan of Alejandro Valverde since his childhood.

Iván Romeo to ride for Movistar:
Iván Romeo

 

ineos
Geraint Thomas Thinks about Retirement and Participation in Giro
Geraint Thomas has indicated that he will possibly be at the start of the Giro d’Italia in 2023, and not the Tour de France. The INEOS Grenadiers rider told Cyclingnews that he has nothing to prove after his third place in the Tour this year.

“It was nice to participate in the Tour de France again this year. People thought I was no longer able to compete with the better.” The 36-year-old Thomas was unable to follow Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar in the Tour, but was clearly the best of the rest. “It’s always extra motivation to show that you can still do it. I feel like I have nothing to prove now.”

In addition to his third place in the Tour de France, Thomas also won the Tour de Suisse. “It was a very refreshing year for me. I have ridden a number of new races such as Liège-Bastogne-Liège, the Flèche Wallonne and the Tour of the Basque Country, races I had never or almost never ridden before.”

Thomas still has a contract with INEOS Grenadiers until the end of 2023. Whether that will be the last year of the rider from Wales is not yet certain. “We have yet to decide. It may be my last year. I want to make the most of it,” said Thomas. “Honestly, I don’t even know if I’ll do the Tour, maybe I’ll do the Giro. I wouldn’t mind doing something else.”

Final year for Geraint Thomas and Giro?
tdf22st13

 

arkea
McLay Extends Contract with Arkea-Samsic
Daniel McLay has extended his contract with Arkea-Samsic. The 30-year-old Briton finished fourth in Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne this year, seventh in the Scheldeprijs and third in stage three of the Vuelta. “I feel like I’m continuing to make progress year after year, which is encouraging.”

“I’m happy to stay with Arkéa-Samsic, especially because we will probably ride a WorldTour program in 2023. In my three years with the French team I have been able to find my way in the sprint field, but I also enjoy the cobbled classics,” McLay said on the Arkéa-Samsic team website.

“I feel like I’m continuing to make progress year after year compared to last year, which is very encouraging.” General manager Emmanuel Hubert also sees that progression and is happy with the contract extension of the 30-year-old Briton. “His experience and composure benefit the whole team. He also has experience on the WorldTour circuit and has already won at that level. This is important.”

Dan McLay staying with Arkea-Samsic:
wallonie20

 

trek segafredo
Juan Pedro López has Successful Nose Surgery
Juan Pedro López had to undergo surgery in a hospital in Seville last weekend. Trek-Segafredo’s 25-year-old Spanish climber suffered from sinusitis, a sinus infection.

The operation went well, López said via his social media. “It’s not the way I wanted to end the season, but I had to do it. I had sinusitis surgery yesterday but everything went well. I would like to thank the doctors of the Sagrado Corazón Hospital in Seville for their professional guidance. I hope to look even better in 2023!”

López had his breakthrough with the pros this year. In the Giro d’Italia he turned out to be one of the revelations. The Spaniard took the pink jersey on the 4th stage finishing on Mount Etna and managed to hold it for ten days. López finished 10th in the final overall.

Juan Pedro López recovering:
Juan Pedro López

 

israel
Dowsett Impressed by Ganna: “Hard to see who can break the hour record”
Filippo Ganna set a new World Hour Record on Saturday in Grenchen, Switzerland. The Italian covered 56,792 kilometres in one hour. Former hour record holder Alex Dowsett was impressed by the Italian. “What Ganna is doing is at the limit of human achievement,” he said to Velonews.

Dowsett, who covered 52,937 kilometres on the Manchester velodrome in 2015, breaking the then hour record of Rohan Dennis, is full of praise when it comes to Ganna’s performance. “I was suprised. While we all know Ganna’s net worth, I didn’t expect him to set the record like this. What the Italian is doing is at the limit of human achievement. Being able to make the difference between 56 and 57 km/h after all those laps is very strong.”

Victor Campenaerts talked about a ‘phenomenally fast’ performance, but also commented: “I don’t think he started in optimal condition. Who can knock this distance? Wout van Aert and Remco Evenepoel are the perfect men. But such preparation is almost impossible to fit into their busy calendar.”

Dowsett does not fully agree with the Belgian: “I’m going to upset the whole of Belgium now, but it’s hard for me to see who can break it. The experience in track cycling has a major influence. Wout van Aert and Remco Evenepoel have no experience on the boards. Even though they belong to the strongest time trialists of the moment, that will be decisive at the finish. Should Remco focus on track cycling, it might be possible in the future due to his natural aerodynamics. Though that is just speculation.”

Dowsett’s hour record:
Talk of the 'Hour Record' had gone quiet of late since Bradley Wiggins put the distance at 54.526 kilometers in June 2015, beating Alex Dowsett's previous mark of 52.397. Dowsett is thinking of going for the record again in 2017, but when? Dowsett has a full road season with Movistar. Could he put the 'Hour' at 55K? Pic:Crankphoto.

 

ineos
INEOS Grenadiers Confirms DS Servais Knaven is Leaving
INEOS Grenadiers has announced via social media that Servais Knaven is leaving the team as DS. The team also says goodbye to Gabriel Rasch and Brett Lancaster. Rasch will be in the team manager’s car of Uno-X next year.

Knaven has been with the British team as DS since 2011, Rasch started working in 2014 and Lancaster since 2016. It is still unclear how Knaven and Lancaster will continue their careers. INEOS Grenadiers already has one replacement: ex-rider Ian Stannard. Davide Bramati was moving to INEOS Grenadiers, but now the Italian is staying with Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl.

The British is also making a lot of changes to their rider roster. Richard Carapaz, Dylan van Baarle, Adam Yates, Richie Porte, Andrey Amador and Eddie Dunbar leave. Thymen Arensman, Connor Swift, Leo Hayter, Michael Leonard and Joshua Tarling join.

Servais Knaven:
Servais Knaven

 

kern
Kern Pharma Extends Sponsorship
The Spanish cycling team; Equipo Kern Pharma has a settled future. Their main sponsor Kern Pharma has decided to extend the sponsorship contract with the team for two more years until the end of 2024.

The Spanish team has been registered as a UCI ProTeam since the beginning of 2021 and hopes to grow in the coming years. Kern Pharma, a pharmaceutical company, will support founder Manolo Azcona and team manager Juanjo Oroz’s project for at least two more seasons. Oroz: “We learn something from our sponsor every day and we want to grow even further. We have done an extraordinary job for three years now, our training is now known worldwide.”

Manuel Garrido, the CEO of Kern Pharma, is also delighted with the partnership. “The cycling team is a very important project for us. Not only because of the brand awareness it gives us, but because we are a company that is 100& committed.”

The team has had two wins in the 2022 season. Roger Adrià won a stage in La Route d’Occitanie in June and promising all-rounder Raúl García Pierna took the Spanish time trial title the same month.

Kern’s TT champ Raúl García Pierna:
vuelta22st10tt

 

movistar
Movistar and Equipo Kern Pharma are Considering an Exchange Deal
Movistar will announce several transfers this week, Spanish sports newspaper Marca reports. The team is also said to be working behind the scenes with a ‘swap deal’ with Equipo Kern Pharma.

Movistar is said to be very interested in Raúl García Pierna. The 21-year-old Spaniard currently rides for Equipo Kern Pharma, but Movistar manager Eusebio Unzué hopes to recruit the promising Spaniard as soon as possible. García Pierna is the reigning Spanish time trial champion and made his first Grand Tour appearance this year, finishing 47th in his first Vuelta a España.

Movistar wants to put an exchange deal to Equipo Kern Pharma, according to Marca. The Spanish climber Óscar Rodríguez, who rides for Movistar, would make the opposite move. The 27-year-old Rodríguez has been racing for Movistar this year, before that he was with Astana and Euskadi-Murias. The two Spanish riders are still under contract with their current teams until the end of 2023, but they have the same manager, the well-known agent Giuseppe Acquadro.

Óscar Rodríguez going back to ProTour?

 

cynisca
Cynisca Cycling Announces Inaugural Roster of Talented, Young Riders
Cynisca Cycling, a new pro women’s cycling team committed to advancing women in the sport both on and off the bike, announces its inaugural roster of cyclists for the 2023 season. Comprised of 75% North American women, Cynisca Cycling‘s roster boasts some of the most promising young talent emerging on the international race scene.

“We’re excited about the Cynisca project and to announce the first riders,” said Chris Gutowsky, the team’s general manager and co-founder. “Cynisca will provide the platform for these talented cyclists to train and compete at the highest level and help aspiring athletes realize their dreams. These women represent the future of cycling.”

USA Cycling CEO Brendan Quirk commented on the partnership with Cynisca, “USA Cycling is committed to developing more women into elite cyclists, and this partnership is a critical step forward towards our long-term goals at the Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028 Olympics. Thanks to Cynisca, we’ll welcome a new team of American women into the European peloton and strengthen the next generation of up-and-coming riders.”

The Cynisca Cycling Team announced the riders on social media with a nod to the team’s namesake, with each athlete declaring “I am Cynisca!”

The Team members includes:

Pauline Allin
Saint Dizant-du-Gua, Charente-Maritime, FRANCE: A very experienced French pro, Pauline has most recently raced for UCI Continental Team Arkéa Pro Cycling. She has scored some impressive results including stage victories at Tour l’Ardeche. She has also competed in Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Paris-Roubaix Femmes and the Giro d’Italia.

Émilie Fortin
Laval, Quebec, CANADA: Émilie is a mix of a climber and rouleur who can be strategic in the hard races. Coming back from crashes and Covid, she had an impressive 2022 with several top five finishes in French Cup races and a win at La Charente Maritime. Her consistent results in late-summer 2022 point towards a strong 2023 season.

Chloé Fourmigué-Villacampa
Bagnères de Bigorre, FRANCE: Chloé lives in the Pyrenees and brings solid climbing skills with promising results in 2022 in the mountains as well as top-20 performance in the French National TT championships. As a former elite-level cross-country skier, her endurance background is perfect for a developing cyclist.

Cara O’Neill
Tucson, Arizona, USA: While completing her degree at University of Arizona, Cara captured multi-year USA Cycling Collegiate National championships in road, TTT and podium finishes in criterium and CX. In 2022 she also raced with the USA Cycling development team for six weeks in Europe. Her goal is to focus on stage racing in 2023 with the goal of learning to race tactically and as a valuable teammate.

Zoe Ta-Perez
Orange, California, USA: Called the 2022 “US elite nationals breakthrough star,” Zoe claimed the USA U23 national time trial (TT) title and 3rd in overall elite women. A junior World Champion in the Madison, Zoe continues a strong comeback following a break from cycling in 2021.

Greta Richioud
Tournon-sur-Rhône Ardèche, FRANCE: Greta brings more than seven years of World Tour riding experience to the team with strong performances in Strade Bianche, Giro d’Italie, l’Ardeche and several classics. She has ridden for FDJ, Hitec Products and most recently Arkea. She is looking forward to the new opportunities on the Cynisca Cycling team.

Katherine Sarkisov
North Potomac, Maryland, USA: The 2022 USA National Junior road race and time trial Champion, Kat started cycling when she was 10 years old, winning her first National Championship in cyclocross (CX) at age 13. Along with 11th place at the CX junior worlds, her stellar 2022 season included wins at the USA Junior National road race, TT and CX. Her 2022 season also included a block of European racing with the Cynisca Cycling-sponsored USA Cycling development team and strong finishes in the UCI World Junior road and time trial championships in Australia.

Kyleigh Spearing
Frankfurt, Illinois, & Boulder, Colorado, USA: Kyleigh has a unique multi-sport background, having won the Junior Elite Triathlon National Championship in 2017. While in college (Notre Dame, Cornell), she ran D1 cross country, while still competing at the elite level in triathlon. She is currently focusing on professional cycling in both road and gravel, joining the Cynisca-sponsored USA Cycling development team in Europe.

Maddy Ward
Poway (San Diego), California, USA: The 2022 season included multiple podium finishes for Maddy, including wins at the Tour of the Gila and Snake Alley Criterium. Injury limited her stint on the Cynisca Cycling-sponsored racing tour in Europe representing USA Cycling. She has previously raced for InstaFund and TIBCO-SVB.

Grace Williams
Bloomington, Indiana, USA: A former D1 endurance runner, Grace moved over to cycling, becoming a strong collegiate rider and winner of the Indiana University Little 500. Her 2022 season included multiple 1st place and podium finishes in the US and a sterling 5th place finish at Unbound Gravel (100).

Claire Windsor
Travelers Rest, South Carolina, USA: Claire is a committed and hard-working teammate and was a leader on the LUX team. She has an aggressive racing style and is well-suited to punchy climbs. Her busy 2022 racing season included 15 top ten and five podium finishes plus a solid UCI race block in Europe. In 2021, she finished 3rd in the USA U23 National criterium and 4th in the U23 road race championships.

Cynisca Cycling will be supported by the team sports director Marion Clignet, general manager Chris Gutowsky and operations director Robin Farina among others, all dedicated to the success of these talented young women and the advancement of women in all disciplines of the sport. The team is initially funded by Solution Tree, a leader in professional development for K-12 educators.

For the launch of the team, UCI President David Lappartient offered these encouraging words: “The UCI works very hard to develop women’s cycling and is glad of the support it receives for this mission. So, many thanks go to Jeff Jones and Chris Gutowsky, who had the vision to launch another pro cycling team in Europe. The Cynisca riders have a great name to live up to. I’m sure this will motivate them to reach for the stars.”

 

jumbo-visma
Jumbo-Visma Switches to SRAM
Jumbo-Visma will switch to the American equipment manufacturer SRAM next year. According to industry sources, SRAM offered a sponsorship amount that Shimano didn’t want to compete with. The team is now also free to switch to another manufacturer for various other products, such as the shoes. There is still an ongoing contract with Lazer helmets.

Since the foundation of the Rabobank team in 1996, Shimano has been involved in the Dutch team as an equipment sponsor. Even when the team had to run as Blanco after 2012, Shimano remained loyal to Richard Plugge’s team during this difficult period. Because Shimano’s European headquarters has been located in the Netherlands for many years, there have always been strong ties between the team and the company.

After SRAM made an offer last summer to become Jumbo-Visma’s new sponsor, Shimano said last week that this amount was too high for them. The Japanese company is sponsoring eight WorldTour teams this year, there are also seven WorldTour teams that pay for the Shimano groups themselves. This year’s WorldTour will be riding Trek-Segafredo and Movistar on SRAM. Campagnolo works together with AG2R Citroën Team, Cofidis and UAE Emirates. All other teams ride with Shimano. Rumour is that UAE Team Emirates may also be on Shimano next year.

SRAM for Jumbo:
vuelta22st14

 

biking
Philippe Gilbert: “My Last Season is Not Over, in Beking I Race in the Name of Solidarity and Sustainable Mobility”
The 2012 World Champion has a special connection to this project and will close his legendary career on the Monaco circuit.

Eighty career victories, including the 2012 World Championship in Limburg and five ‘Monument’ victories – a Ronde van Vlaanderen, a Paris-Roubaix, a Liège-Bastogne-Liège and two Giro di Lombardia: Philippe Gilbert not only has an outstanding record, but can also be considered one of the most charismatic protagonists of international cycling in recent years.

At the age of forty, of which nineteen years of professionalism behind him, the Belgian champion has announced his retirement from competition, but fans will be able to see him compete on the road once again on 27 November, on the Beking Monaco 2022 circuit, a project of which he is one of the most convinced supporters.

beking

“I believed in this initiative from the start,” he explained. “The thing that immediately got me involved was the aspect of promoting cycling in schools: it’s important to introduce our wonderful sport to young people and it’s a subject very close to my heart. My favourite part of this day will actually be in the morning, when I will be able to ride with the children on the closed circuit, as it is the only time of the year you can do this in Monaco.”

In addition to bringing the kids closer to cycling, one of the many social implications of Beking is also the promotion of the bicycle as a sustainable transport mode for getting around the city, saving time, avoiding hours in traffic and – last but not least – having a moment to oneself during which one can practise sport in the open air.

“Sport is a social vehicle and plays an important role in the development of children and human beings in general, because we are meant to be active,” Gilbert said. “When I leave for training in the early hours of the day, I am always happy to pass people cycling to work in Munich. The clerk in my shop comes to work almost all year round on a bike and this definitely gives him a different twist to get through the day, he gains health and also happiness, an ingredient we all need, every day.”

beking

The appointment is for Sunday, 27 November where the great champions will compete in a criterium that is the heart of the event and fans – young and old – will be able to experience a day alongside the most famous names in international cycling.
“I hope for a great success of the second edition,” he concludes. “I hope that the weather will also be on our side, so that we can enjoy this day with as many people as possible. For me Beking is a celebration of our sport.”

“Beking Monaco is an event that supports charities through cycling while raising awareness of cycling as a synonym for sustainable mobility. The event, organised by CMT and AWE, is open to the public, and will take place on 27 November at the Port Hercule in Monaco, with a variety of activities under the banner of sport and solidarity.”

beking

 

flanders
Flanders Classics Announces Dates for the Spring Classics 2023
Flanders Classics is looking ahead to next season. On Wednesday morning, Flanders Classics announced the dates for the spring classics in 2023.

The Flanders Classics season will kick off on February 25, 2023 with Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, followed by Gent-Wevelgem (March 26), Dwars door Vlaanderen (March 29), the Ronde van Vlaanderen (April 2), Scheldeprijs (April 5) and the Brabantse Pijl (April 12).

In the summer, Flanders Classics also organises three more one-day races with the Ronde van Limburg (29 May), the Brussels Cycling Classic (4 June) and the Druivenkoers in Overijse (19 August).

Flanders – The home of the Classics:
Flanders Classics Calendar for 2023
Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (Bel) 25 February
Gent-Wevelgem (BEL) March 26
Dwars door Vlaanderen (Bel) March 29
Ronde van Vlaanderen (Bel) April 2
Scheldeprijs (Bel) April 5
Brabantse Pijl (Bel) April 12
Ronde van Limburg (Bel) May 29
Brussels Cycling Classic (Bel) June 4
Druivenkoers in Overijse (Bel) 19 August.

la passione

 

canada
Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame to Induct Five New Members
Five new members will be inducted into the Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame on October 29th in Ottawa, ON, as part of Cycling Canada’s Annual Conference. Tara Whitten, Patrice Bonneau, Ron Hayman, and Archie McEachern will be inducted as athletes, while Tour de l’Abitibi will be recognised for their tremendous achievements as builders.

The Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame was created in 2015 to recognise outstanding achievement and contribution to the sport of cycling by both athletes and builders. With this induction, the Hall of Fame will count Thirty-two members, including twenty-six athletes and six builders.

No stranger to high performance competition, Tara Whitten is a dual Olympian and Olympic medallist, having competed for 13 years in cross-country skiing before switching over to track and road cycling. By 2009, Whitten had already become an elite rider and won silver at the Track World Championships. She quickly made a name for herself, becoming World Champion in both the Omnium (2010 & 2011) and Points Race (2010). She won four medals at the 2010 Commonwealth Games (one gold & three bronze) in both track and road, and was named Canada’s Closing Ceremony flag bearer. Whitten made her Olympic debut at London 2012, where she won bronze as a member of the Team Pursuit squad.

At an early age, Patrice Bonneau was involved in para-sport, after having his right foot amputated at the age of three. In 1987, he bought his first racing bike, with sights set on the 1992 Paralympic Games in Barcelona. Bonneau won his first international race qualifying him for the Barcelona Games where he went on to win a gold medal. In 1994, he won gold in the road race at the World Championships on Belgium and distinguished himself on the track, setting a world record in the 1000m time trial. Bonneau ended his cycling career in 1997 after the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games, where he won his second Paralympic medal, a bronze in the road race.

As one of the first Canadian cyclists to turn professional in the late 1970’s, Ron Hayman inspired future Canadian cyclists that followed. Hayman made his Olympic debut in Munich at the 1972 Olympics in the Individual Pursuit, followed by participating at the 1976 Olympics in the Team Pursuit. He raced as a professional from 1979 through to 1988, best known for his time with the 7-Eleven Cycling Team. Hayman has many career highlights, winning three straight Gastown Grand Prix races, four stage wins in the Coors Classic, and winning the 1979 Tour of Ireland.

Archie McEachern (1873-1902) was a Canadian track cyclist and in 1900 became world champion in the 25-mile Championship race in Boston. He won many races in Toronto before seeking greater glory in Philadelphia in 1899. In 1902, he broke the world indoor bicycle record for 5 miles behind a motor-paced vehicle. While training at the Atlantic City, NJ, velodrome, prior to its official opening, McEachern was injured when the bike’s drive chain broke and he died shortly thereafter.

The Tour de l’Abitibi was created in 1969 and is now an international cycling race, welcoming 150 riders annually for an intense stage race competition. This is the sole UCI Junior Nations Cup in the Americas, and attracts riders and teams from around the world. Many renowned cyclists, including Hall of Fame member Steve Bauer, participated in the Tour de ‘Abitibi before they launched their professional careers.

Tickets for the 2022 Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame Event can be purchased here. Proceeds from all ticket sales will go towards supporting the National Capital Region Cycling Bursary.

Ron Hayman to the Canadian Cycling Hall of Fame:
bc week hayman

 


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