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EUROTRASH: Drone Steals Show at CX Worlds

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All the latest cycling news: Augustijn Parkcross in Maldegem and Diana Peñuela defended her Colombian national road title.

The drone was the star of the World cyclocross championships – TOP STORY.

Rider news: No UAE Tour for Tadej Pogačar, Mark Cavendish praises Alexandre Vinokourov, heavy prison sentences for Mark Cavendish robbers, Daniel Felipe Martínez for the hilly Classics, Annemiek van Vleuten to ride la Vuelta, Giro and Tour in her final season, Egan Bernal not fit yet, Eddie Dunbar suffered a broken hand in Valencia, Jérôme Pineau to tell his story, teamless Nairo Quintana in talks with UCI and MPCC, Philippe Gilbert to be on a Eurosport motorbike and Ibai Salas’ suspension was Illegal.

Team news: Arkéa extends contract until the end of 2025, UAE Team Emirates Clasica Jaén & Vuelta Andalucia line-ups confirmed, AG2R Citroën to Muscat Classic & Tour of Oman, UCI allows Russians back to the World champs on certain conditions, DSM to UAE Tour & Figueira Champions Classic and FDJ-SUEZ Critical of the Giro and the Vuelta.

Race news: A longer women’s Amstel Gold Race, teams for the Muscat Classic/Tour of Oman, World champion confirmed for the UAE Tour, Longo Borghini, Cavalli, Brown, Bastianelli and Wiebes ready to light up the first-ever UAE Tour Women and many town councils want to be part of the 75th anniversary of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana.
EUROTRASH coffee time.


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TOP STORY: The Drone was the Star of the World Cyclocross Championships
At the cyclocross World championships in Hoogerheide, all eyes were on the battle between Mathieu van der Poel and Wout van Aert, but ‘the drone’ was the other star of the show. The black mini-aircraft provided spectacular images during the race.

In the forest, between low-hanging branches and through sharp bends, the television viewers were following the cross riders on the course in Hoogerheide. Two young Flemish men were responsible for the unique drone images: pilot Jan Crommelinck and spotter Tim Verbruggen. Crommelinck piloted the drone during the various races, Verbruggen had to determine when it was safe to take off.

The two had their own tent in the middle of the forest during the World championships, away from the crowd. A small scaffolding had been built in front of the tent, where Crommelinck controlled the self-built drone with his virtual reality glasses. Verbruggen, on the other hand, consulted with the director and was in close contact with his Flemish colleague. “One word: live. And then I fly with the riders through the woods. I have to be fully focused because safety is everything. Nothing can go wrong,” Crommelinck explained to NOS.

Drones are already being used in many Belgian cyclocross races, but the UCI held back. “They have also asked several times in recent days to fly higher. They wanted three meters. That is not possible, because the camera is right on the drone. Then you look over the riders. The higher, the safer. How? In this case, higher is certainly not safer.”

Crommelinck, one of the best drone pilots in Europe, outlines the dangers. “The most difficult assignments are when you have to fly through people in one shot. You never know if someone will make an unexpected move. It is not dangerous if it falls from the sky. The blow is equivalent to a light nudge. But such a scenario is my nightmare. Safety is everything to me. Today, most drones work on a GPS system, but it is completely manual. A GPS can interfere, so I want to keep everything in my own hands. And it is also much more manoeuvrable.”

Pim Marks was responsible for directing the cyclocross world championships on behalf of the NOS, and is very enthusiastic about the new drone images. “We also used a drone at the Netherlands cyclocross national championships in Zaltbommel. There are still strict regulations regarding the use of drones. For example, you are usually not allowed to fly over public. Now it was a bit more complicated, because the UCI in particular was very concerned about the safety of the riders.”

“As the weekend progressed and everyone saw how beautiful the images were and confidence in the UCI grew, we were able to take more risks. With the men, the viewer really sat on the shoulder of Mathieu and Wout. I think I opted for the drone images in half of the cases with the pros. Maybe more often.”

Will we now see the drone more often at sporting events? “I certainly think so. Sport on a closed course is very suitable for this. But it can also be an added value at the finish of a cycle race. In cyclocross, this could well be the breakthrough of the drone,” said Marks.

More drones at cyclocross:


Augustijn Parkcross Maldegem – Men 2023
Michael Vanthourenhout won the Parkcross in Maldegem. The European champion of Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal pulled back Laurens Sweeck in a tactical race in the final and then beat him in a sprint.


The riders of Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal were dominant in Maldegem on Wednesday. Vanthourenhout and Eli Iserbyt kept the pace high at the front of the race in the first laps. This didn’t cause a big selection, because in the first laps a group of about fourteen riders remained together.

Iserbyt was able to take advantage of his team’s pace on the fourth lap. When Iserbyt started, Vanthourenhout eased off and Iserbyt was able to create a gap on the others. In the following laps, the Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal rider defended this lead, while Vanthourenhout and later Ryan Kamp worked to slow the chase. Sweeck counter-attacked around halfway to bring back Iserbyt but was unsuccessful at first. Kamp and Vanthourenhout in the group, Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal clearly had the race under control, until Iserbyt made a mistake in the sand and suddenly there were four leaders: Kamp, Vanthourenhout and Iserbyt, all Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal and Sweeck.

In the final laps, Sweeck jumped away. despite the number of Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal riders. The Crelan-Fristads escaped from Iserbyt, Vanthourenhout and Kamp and looked to be on his way to victory, but first Iserbyt and then also Vanthourenhout got back to him. Vanthourenhout then beat Sweeck in a sprint, while Iserbyt dropped out of contention in the final of the race after a collision with Sweeck.


Race winner, Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel): “Eli Iserbyt was very strong, just like Laurens Sweeck by the way. Ryan Kamp and I had to bite to stay on the wheel with them. It is not easy when those men open their throttle. In the end I had to give everything to be the first to use that last piece of sand. That worked and I was also the first to pull into the finish straight. The World championship was good, but not great. There will be another very important cross on Saturday. In Middelkerke I try to keep my second place in the Superprestige and then some nice races follow. So the season is definitely not over yet. I think that was a tough duel in the race. I really don’t know what’s good about it. It was a mess for the pits. Both wanted to keep their place and then sometimes things happen.”

2nd, Laurens Sweeck (Bel): “There was a duel in full race and in full final with Iserbyt. Those things just happen in a cross. Easy. No more, no less. Eli was on the attack halfway through. I was trapped by the men of his team,” explained the Crelan-Fristads crosser. “But Iserbyt made a mistake in the sandbox. Then I was able to close the gap. I did not hold back and continued on my momentum and immediately launched the attack.”

5th, Eli Iserbyt (Bel): “Laurens Sweeck should be disqualified. He rode me into the fences. This is not possible. It is not the first time he has done something illegal in the cross. It was just the same as in Otegem. Sweeck shouldn’t be allowed on the podium.”

Augustijn Parkcross Maldegem – Men Result:
1. Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel)
2. Laurens Sweeck (Bel)
3. Ryan Kamp (Ned)
4. Niels Vandeputte (Bel)
5. Eli Iserbyt (Bel)
6. Kevin Kuhn (Sui)
7. Lander Loockx (Bel)
8. Emiel Verstrynge (Bel)
9. Joran Wyseure (Bel)
10. Vincent Baestaens (Bel).



Augustijn Parkcross Maldegem – Women 2023
The Parkcross in Maldegem was won by Annemarie Worst. She dropped Inge van der Heijden, Denise Betsema and Manon Bakker in the last laps and crossed the line solo.


Without Lucinda Brand, Fem van Empel and Puck Pieterse, but with top riders such as Denise Betsema, Inge van der Heijden and Annemarie Worst, the Parkcross was missing the cream on Wednesday.

Worst and Van der Heijden were the fastest starters. They had Leonie Bentveld and Laura Verdonschot on their wheels, but the situation didn’t stay that way for long. On the first lap, Van der Heijden went solo. She was caught a lap later by Manon Bakker, after which Worst and Betsema also joined them. After that it was a constant attack and chase by the four riders at the front. Two laps from the finish, the four were together again, and it was a matter of waiting for a decisive move. It eventually came from Worst. The 777 rider powered away from her three competitors and slowly expanded her lead. With half a lap to go the lead was 7 seconds. After four months without a win, Worst was first over the line followed by Bakker and Betsema.


Race winner, Annemarie Worst (Ned): “Even if they sometimes change the course, I still manage to win here. This victory is good. I had started reasonably well and was able to maintain myself at the front. I lost touch with the head of the race for a moment, but halfway through the cross I was able to claim my place in the front again. The winner was clearly in our group and in the penultimate lap I felt it was my time to go. I was able to immediately create a gap and thus start the final lap with some lead. Then I had to stop making mistakes and I succeeded.”

Augustijn Parkcross Maldegem – Women Result:
1. Annemarie Worst (Ned)
2. Manon Bakker (Ned)
3. Denise Betsema (Ned)
4. Inge van der Heijden (Ned)
5. Laura Verdonschot (Bel)
6. Leonie Bentveld (Ned)
7. Rebecca Gariboldi (Ita)
8. Anna Kay (GB)
9. Francesca Baroni (Ita)
10. Julie Brouwers (Bel).



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Diana Carolina Peñuela Successfully Defends Colombian National Title
Diana Peñuela rounded the final corner, out-kicking Paula Patiño (Movistar Team) in a thrilling sprint to successfully defend her Colombian national road title on Friday. Peñuela’s win in Bucaramanga came a day after earning a silver medal in the individual time trial championship as the 36-year-old embarks on her second season with DNA Pro Cycling.

“There is nothing better than having the opportunity to represent the tri-color national champion jersey around the world,” Peñuela said following her second consecutive victory. “Last year, I put forth almost a desperate mental and physical effort, after coming so close for many years. The plan this year was to have patience, to know which break and attacks to control, and of course, to mark riders like Paula (Patiño) and Natalia (Franco), who are very strong. I stuck to it, kept a cool head on my shoulders and everything turned out great.”

Peñuela spent much of the offseason training at home in Colombia, preparing for her first objective of the season. Much of the championship circuit was held on the same roads as the final stage of last season’s Vuelta a Colombia, where Peñuela won 4 stages and the general classification.

“December and January were good months for training with little rain, so I was able to put in a solid block of training … I knew it was going to be tough. I knew I had to have the speed to stay with multiple attacks, be able to climb with the best, and have reserves for the final sprint,” she said.

The victory came in the final 50 meters of the 118.5km circuit race that included 5 times up the Alto Parqueadero climb with an average 8% gradient. Towards the end of lap 3, three riders escaped– Lina Rojas, Carol Henao, and Karina Flores – this breakaway later grew to 10, with both Peñuela and Patiño joining. Natalia Franco, who races with the UCI WCC Team, was also part of this break. Franco broke away solo on the penultimate lap but was caught on the final climb before a remaining group of 8 raced to contest the finish.

“When you’re on your own in a race, versus with teammates, you must consider strategies and tactics very carefully. I’ve gained more experience each year, and with the pre-race direction from Cathy and Jack (DNA Pro Cycling directors), I was able to approach the race more calmly and with a plan,” Peñuela said.

The 2X Colombian National Road Champion will have the opportunity to race in her national jersey as she begins her 8th season racing professionally.

“This was my first objective of the season. Not only for my trade team, but also to be part of the Colombian National Team to race in the Pan American games,” she said. “I’m looking forward to an exciting season with DNA Pro Cycling, with upcoming races in the United States and Europe. I’m especially looking forward to supporting our new young riders and hopefully help them to secure results.”

DNA Pro Cycling, based in the United States, has been an elite women’s cycling team for over 10 years and is a joint venture owned and operated by K4 Racing LLC and TREND Cycling Collective. The team is a UCI Women’s Continental Team and has riders from the US, Canada, Colombia, Mexico, and Great Britain. The team’s website is www.DNACyclingTeam.com. Official social media properties are: facebook.com/k4racing; instagram.com/dnak4; twitter.com/DNA_K4.

Diana Carolina Peñuela Colombian national champion again:


No UAE Tour for Tadej Pogačar, Season Debut in Spain
Tadej Pogačar will not defend his title in the UAE Tour (February 20-26), his UAE Team Emirates has announced. The Slovenian misses the race in the Emirates to contest the Ruta del Sol (February 15-19).

Pogačar won the UAE Tour, which is very important for his team UAE Emirates, in both 2021 and 2022. This year he would race against World champion Remco Evenepoel in the Middle East, but that will now not happen. In the Ruta del Sol, Enric Mas, Carlos Rodríguez and Mikel Landa are on the provisional start list.

Pogačar’s season debut is two days before the start of the Ruta del Sol. On February 13, the two-time Tour de France winner will be at the start of the Clásica Jaén Paraiso, a gravel race in Andalusia. “I’m looking forward to these games, to put on a number again and be with the team,” Pogačar said on the UAE Team Emirates website. “I’ve been watching races on television for the past few weeks. I enjoyed that, but I also wanted to participate in the action. The preparation has been good. I had stomach flu in January, which was not very nice, but luckily that is over and I feel healthy again.”

“It is nice to discover some new competitions. I look forward to what Jaén and Andalusia have in store for us. I can’t wait to race again,” said the 24 year-old. In the Clásica Jaén Paraiso, Pogačar leads a team that includes Sjoerd Bax, Alessandro Covi, Marc Hirschi, Domen Novak, Matteo Trentin and Tim Wellens. In the Ruta del Sol, George Bennett and Rafal Majka are there instead of Marc Hirschi and Matteo Trentin.

Pogačar to Spain, not UAE:
uae tour


Mark Cavendish Praises Alexandre Vinokourov
Mark Cavendish will start his first race of the new season this week in Oman. The 38 year-old his debut in the colours of Astana Qazaqstan. In an extensive interview with The Sunday Times, Cavendish speaks highly of the Kazakh team and manager, Alexandre Vinokourov.

For a long time it looked like Cavendish would be with the French B&B Hotels-KTM team in 2023, but that project eventually collapsed. Vinokourov was then quick to contact t the Manxman. “Vino called up and asked me, ‘What do you think? I can’t pay you what a B&B would do, but come here, there’s no pressure,'” Cavendish says.

“We talked about the benefits, but also what would happen if I wasn’t successful, if it went the other way. He just said, ‘It doesn’t matter. If you don’t win, you don’t win. But we’re going to try.’ It’s been a long, long time since anyone spoke to me like that. I’ve been on teams where they praised me, that’s tough. You feel isolated, you feel the pressure. I have also been in teams where I was kicked, not physically, but that is not nice either. Here I feel respected for what I have achieved, what I can still achieve, and as a person.”

After riding for Dimension Data for four years, Cavendish then went to Bahrain Victorious in 2020, there he didn’t achieve anything. However, Deceuninck – Quick-Step signed him and he won four stages in the 2021 Tour de France. The following year, however, Fabio Jakobsen went to the Tour as a sprinter and Cavendish stayed at home.

“I feel like I’ve been jumping through hoops for years. First there were the years at Dimension Data. There I fell ill due to the fault of the team (mononucleosis), but I was presented with the bill myself. That hurts. At Bahrain, and even at Quick-Step, I couldn’t prepare for anything, set a goal. This is the first time I can work towards something instead of feeling like I have to prove myself to get a chance.

Cavendish is also impressed by Vinokourov on a personal level. Vino was ‘brilliant’ when the trial began early this year against the suspects of the robbery at his house in November 2021. “The team has been extremely supportive, incredible. The signing of the contract was delayed because they gave me time. Vino said, ‘Take your time, be with your family if you need to.’ It took a lot of pressure off, which allowed us to deal with it.”

Cavendish racing soon:
astana cav


Heavy Prison Sentences for Mark Cavendish Robbers
The two men responsible for the brutal robbery at the home of Mark Cavendish and his family have been sentenced to very long prison terms. 31 year-old Romario Henry was sentenced to 15 years in prison, 28 year-old Ali Sesay has to go to prison for 12 years for the robbery.

During the so-called ‘homejacking’ of Cavendish’s house on November 27, 2021. The British cyclist was sleeping in bed with his wife Peta Todd and one of his children when four armed robbers broke into the house. They attacked Cav and threatened to stab him. Several items were stolen, including two Richard Mille watches with a combined value of around €800,000. Cavendish is an ambassador for this exclusive brand.

Fingerprints on Cavendish’s wife’s phone helped track down one robber, leading to more arrests. Chelmsford Crown Court has now sentenced Henry to 15 years in prison, Sesay to 12 years. The latter also admitted six other crimes in court, for which he was sentenced to a further eight years in prison, in addition to the 12 year prison sentence for the Cavendish robbery.

Judge David Turner was clear in his verdict. “This was a planned, targeted, organised and ruthless crime targeting an internationally renowned sportsman and his wife who happened to be brand ambassadors for exceptionally valuable Richard Mille brand watches.” The search for the other two robbers is still ongoing.

Cavendish robbers sentenced:


Daniel Felipe Martínez is Aiming for the Hilly Classics
Daniel Felipe Martínez will again be at the start of the hilly classics this year, Revistamundociclistico reports. The INEOS Grenadiers Colombian climber opts for his usual schedule of the Amstel Gold Race, la Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

The 26-year-old Martínez will ride, the same as last year, the Volta ao Algarve (February 15-19), Paris-Nice (March 5-12) and the Tour of the Basque Country (April 3-8), before taking part in take part in the Amstel Gold Race (April 16), Flèche Wallonne (April 19) and Liège-Bastogne-Liège (April 23). This will be the first time Martínez will be at the start of the Amstel Gold Race.

Last year Martínez was third in the Volta ao Algarve and Paris-Nice and won the Tour of the Basque Country. He also rode well in the hilly classics, with 5th in la Flèche Wallonne and 4th in Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

The INEOS Grenadiers rider, who will be co-leader in the Tour de France, started his season in the Vuelta a San Juan, where he finished 25th and was second in the Colombian road championships behind Esteban Chaves.

Daniel Felipe Martínez race schedule:
15-02 – 19-02 Volta ao Algarve em Bicicleta
05-03 – 12-03 Paris-Nice
03-04 – 08-04 Itzulia Basque Country
16-04 Amstel Gold Race
19-04 La Flèche Wallonne
23-04 Liège-Bastogne-Liège
01-07 – 23-07 Tour de France

Another hard spring for Martínez:
basque22 st6


Annemiek van Vleuten to Ride Vuelta, Giro and Tour in her Final Year
Annemiek van Vleuten is preparing for a very busy farewell year. The reigning world champion will appear at the start of La Vuelta Femenina, the Giro d’Italia Donne and the Tour de France Femmes in 2023. Last year, Van Vleuten succeeded in winning all three.

Van Vleuten, who is now 40 years-old, has announced her 2023 race schedule on her own website. The Movistar rider will start the season in the Setmana Ciclista Valenciana (16-19 February). Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (February 25) and Strade Bianche (March 4) are then on the programme, followed by an altitude training camp in Tenerife (March 5-31).

On Tenerife, Van Vleuten hopes to prepare for the most important spring classics, with the Tour of Flanders (April 2), Amstel Gold Race (April 16), Flèche Wallonne (April 19) and Liège-Bastogne-Liège (April 23). A week after Liège-Bastogne-Liège, La Vuelta Femenina (May 1-7) will be the first ‘Grand Tour’ of 2023. It was unclear whether she would ride the Vuelta, but Van Vleuten has now made the decision.

After the Spanish tour, Van Vleuten will take a rest and a her next altitude training camp, although the location is not yet known, of more than three weeks in the run-up to the Dutch road championship (June 24, subject to change) and the Giro d’Italia Donne (June 30-9 July). After the Giro, Van Vleuten will head straight to Livigno, where she will stay at altitude for another two weeks and will work towards a final peak of form for the Tour de France Femmes (July 23-30) and the World Championships in Glasgow (August 10-12). .

After the World Time Trial Championships (August 10) and the Road World Championships (August 12), Vleuten’s career will finally be over.

Annemiek van Vleuten Race Schedule:
Setmana Ciclista Valenciana (February 16-19)
Omloop Het Nieuwsblad (February 25)
Strade Bianche (March 4)
Altitude training in Tenerife (5-31 March)
Tour of Flanders (April 2)
Amstel Gold Race (April 16)
La Flèche Wallonne (April 19)
Liège-Bastogne-Liège (April 23)
La Vuelta Femenina (May 1-7)
Altitude training (May 29-June 22)
Dutch road championship (June 24)*
Giro d’Italia Donne (June 30-July 9)
Altitude training in Livigno (July 10-22)
Tour de France Femmes (July 23-30)
World Time Trial Championship (August 10)
World Road Championship (August 12)

A busy last year for Van Vleuten:
giro donne 22 st7


Bernal Not Race Fit Yet
Egan Bernal had to miss the Colombian road championship on Sunday, won by Esteban Chaves, after he had to leave the Vuelta a San Juan with a knee injury. “I am still recovering from a knee injury and hope to race again soon,” the 2019 Tour winner sounded optimistic.

Egan Bernal showed that he was approaching his old level again with a fourth place in the Queen stage of the Vuelta a San Juan, but the next day he suddenly abandoned with knee problems. INEOS sports director Xabier Zandio was unconcerned, however, Bernal hoped to be fit in time for the Colombian championships, but the national title fight came too soon for the two-time grand tour winner.

Bernal has now spoken on social media. “How exciting the national championships were! I want to congratulate Esteban on his victory and Daniel (Felipe Martínez) and Nairo (Quintana) for their podium finishes. I am still recovering from a knee injury myself and hope to race again soon.”

It is not yet known what exactly Bernal’s program will look like. Marca previously reported that the 26 year-old rider would start his European campaign with Paris-Nice (March 5-13). Bernal is one of the leaders of INEOS Grenadiers in the upcoming Tour de France, alongside his Daniel Felipe Martínez and young Spaniard Carlos Rodríguez.

Bernal not fit yet:


Eddie Dunbar Suffered a Broken Hand in the Tour of Valencia
Eddie Dunbar suffered a broken hand in his crash on the opening stage of the Tour of Valencia. The break was discovered after further investigation, his team Jayco AlUla said on social media. Dunbar left the Spanish stage race immediately after his fall.

“After his crash on the first stage of the Tour of Valencia, Eddie Dunbar has undergone new tests for the pain in his hand. An X-ray showed a small fracture,” wrote Jayco AlUla. “As a result, he will take some time to rest and recover in the coming weeks. Get well soon, Eddie!”

Dunbar left INEOS Grenadiers last year for the Australian team. With his new team, the Irishman should have more opportunities, especially in the stage races. For example, he will be seen as the leader in a big round this year. “Currently, the Giro d’Italia is the plan. There he will be our man for the GC,” Matt White, performance director at Jayco AlUla, told The Irish Times.

Broken hand for Dunbar:


Jérôme Pineau Will Soon Tell his Story
Jérôme Pineau will soon tell more about the reasons behind the collapse of the B&B Hotels-KTM team. The former rider told the French sports newspaper L’Équipe; “Now it is still too early, but I will certainly do it.”

The story of B&B Hotels-KTM is now well known. The French team had big plans for the future last year and wanted to take the next step with a new sponsor(s). However, the intended sponsorship deal with the city of Paris eventually stalled and Pineau was unable to find an alternative sponsor. The initially ambitious B&B Hotels ceased to exist all together.

Things then remained quiet around team boss Pineau for a long time, but the now 43 year-old Frenchman has indicated that he will soon tell his side of the story. “It is still too early, but I will certainly do it. I intend to come out with my story in a few weeks. I hope to do it before the start of Paris-Nice. There are some things I need to fix first.”

Sports newspaper L’Équipe also reports that several former riders of B&B Hotels-KTM have spoken to lawyer Romuald Palao. According to Palao, the salaries still to be paid for 2022 are now in order and riders can even claim compensation.

Jérôme Pineau’s story to come out soon:


Teamless Quintana Flies to Europe for Talks with UCI and MPCC
It is early February and Nairo Quintana still has no team. However, the Colombian hasn’t just given up and will fly to Europe this week for talks with the UCI, MPCC (Movement for Credible Cycling) and Tour organiser ASO, in the hope of breaking the impasse.

According to the Colombian El Tiempo, Quintana will sit at the conference table with people from the UCI, MPCC and ASO in the coming days to discuss the handling of his Tramadol case and his uncertain future. Quintana hopes for a breakthrough as soon as possible and to sign with a new team. The 33 year-old rider has already indicated that he only wants to compete at a professional level.

Quintana raced for the French Arkéa-Samsic team for the past three seasons, but at the beginning of October 2022, both parties decided, despite an earlier verbal contract extension agreement, to part ways. The climber had been removed from the Tour de France two months earlier after testing positive for Tramadol. This painkiller is not on the WADA banned substance list, but it is banned by the UCI.

The two-time winner of a Grand Tour raced last Sunday in the Colombian road championship in Bucaramanga. Quintana took the bronze medal as an individual rider in a white jersey without sponsors.

Quintana – 3rd in the Colombian champs:


Gilbert to Replace Wiggins on a Eurosport Motorbike
Philippe Gilbert retired from his professional cycling career last autumn at the finish of Paris-Tours, but the 2012 World champion will be part of the peloton. According to L’Équipe, the Belgian will be on the back of a motorbike during several major races, reporting for Eurosport. Bradley Wiggins and Alberto Contador have also done this for the sports channel.

Gilbert’s debut would be the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, a race he won twice as a rider in 2006 and 2008. Then he will ‘ride’ the Strade Bianche on March 4 and Paris-Nice, April 5-12. Gilbert will also be part of the preview and summing up of various races. It is not the first time that Gilbert has be a TV analyst. He also commentated for Eurosport during the World championships in 2018 and Paris-Tours 2020.

Swapping the bike for the moto:


Doping Suspension on Ibai Salas was Illegal
Ibai Salas should not have been suspended for four years, according to the Spanish national court. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) suspended the former Burgos-BH rider in 2020 for a violation of anti-doping rules.

Salas’ doping case has been going on for several years. The Spanish rider was suspended for four years in October 2018 by the Spanish Anti-Doping Agency (AEPSAD), after deviating values were found in his biological passport in the period from January 25 to August 3, 2017. But four months later, that decision was overturned by the Spanish Administrative Court for Sport. It ruled that the biological passport may only be used as additional evidence, not as the sole reason for a suspension.

In March 2019, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) appealed to the CAS requesting that Salas be suspended for four years. The arbitration panel ruled that the values in the blood passport were “highly abnormal and indicated a high likelihood of doping”. Nor did Salas give any credible physiological or pathological reasons to explain the deviations in his values. In addition, the timing of the deviating values and his racing was notable.

That is why the CAS decided to impose a four-year suspension on Salas. All results of the Spaniard were also deleted from January 25, 2017. Since the rider was free to race pending the assessment of his case, his suspension started on the date of the CAS ruling, August 4, 2020.

Salas challenged the decision again and was upheld by Court 7 (for Administrative Appeals) in Madrid. WADA appealed against this ruling, but that appeal has now been rejected by the Spanish national court. Two reasons were given for this.

First, the judge argued, a suspension would contradict the principle of the presumption of innocence. “The principle of the presumption of innocence was not respected because the conviction was based on the statement that there is ‘a high probability’ that illicit substances or methods were used. However, punishment cannot be based on probabilities, but only on the basis of indisputable certainties.”

In addition, the charged facts are “not correctly qualified”, they said, since “the means or methods used are not described”. The results of the biological passport, which speak against Salas, are not in themselves sufficient to hand out a penalty to the ex-rider. Only since December 2021 has it been legally established in Spain that a biological passport can serve as proof.

Ibai Salas innocent?


Arkéa Extends Sponsorship Contract Until the End of 2025
Good news for Arkéa-Samsic. Arkéa, the main sponsor of the French WorldTour team, has extended its contract with the team for two seasons. They will remain sponsor to both the men’s and women’s teams until at least the end of 2025.

Emmanuel Hubert, the manager of both teams, is happy with the extension. “The most beautiful stories emerge over time. Our story with title partner Arkéa began in 2014 through their online banking subsidiary, Fortuneo. From 2019, Arkéa will be on our shirts and the women’s team will also start its fourth season. We share common values with Arkéa.”

“Extending our partnership is a great reward for all the people who are part of our two teams. The riders and the staff. This renewed commitment also allows us to continue building our place within the UCI WorldTour. Seriousness, work, daring and humility will remain the values that we will try to emphasise every day to make our red and black colours shine at the highest level.”


Clasica Jaén & Vuelta Andalucia Line-ups Confirmed
Emirati squad looking for first European win of the year

UAE Team Emirates continue to ramp-up their season with two Spanish races: Clásica Jaén Paraíso Interior on 13 February followed up closely by the Vuelta Andalucia from 15-19 February.

Tadej Pogačar will begin his 2023 campaign, with the two-time Tour de France champion lining-up for both races for the first time in his young career.

The team will count on a wealth of experience and talent for the gravel roads of Jaen Paraiso in a squad well suited to the terrain.

Clásica Jaén Paraíso Interior [1.1] – 13-Feb-2023
Sjoerd Bax (Ned)
Alessandro Covi (Ita)
Marc Hirschi (Swi)
Domen Novak (Slo)
Tadej Pogačar (Slo)
Matteo Trentin (Ita)
Tim Wellens (Bel).

Pogačar: “I’m excited for these races and to pin on a number again and be with the team. I’ve been watching the first races last weeks on the TV and enjoying it, but also wishing a bit to be there in the action. The preparation has been good. I had a bit of gastroenteritis in January which wasn’t very pleasant but thankfully I’m over it and feeling healthy. It’s nice to experience new races and I’m looking forward to what Jaen and Andalucia have in store for us. I can’t wait to start racing again.”

Sports Manager Joxean Matxin Fernandez (Spa) will lead the team in Jaen, being joined by Sports Directors Andrej Hauptman (Slo) and Manuele Mori (Ita) who will also continue for Andalucia.

Joxean Matxin Fernandez (Sports Manager): “For Jaen and Andalucia we have a highly experienced team who we believe can do great things. Obviously the gravel aspect of Jaen makes it a good place for us to test material and bikes, so it’s a race that offers a lot. But of course, like any race we do we are also there to target victory. We are taking a roster with a lot of quality which will be headed by Pogačar who will also make his season debut here. Though we have many riders in the team who can step-up for a big result. For Tadej the plan this year was to keep the base of the calendar more or less the same while making a few adjustments, which is what we’ve done. Tadej is a rider who likes to keep things fresh and try new things so starting the year here in Jaen and Andalucia made sense. The season will be long so our idea is to build up gradually to the biggest targets.”

Vuelta a Andalucia Ruta Ciclista Del Sol [2.Pro] – 15-Feb-2023 / 19-Feb-2023
Sjoerd Bax (Ned)
George Bennett (NZ)
Alessandro Covi (Ita)
Rafal Majka (Pol)
Domen Novak (Slo)
Tadej Pogačar (Slo)
Tim Wellens (Bel).

Pogačar to start his season in Spain:


ag2r cirtoen
Muscat Classic (10 février) & Tour of Oman (11-15 février)
Geoffrey Bouchard: “I am coming out of a very good two-week training camp (from January 18 to February 2) at altitude in Sierra Nevada. The conditions were cool at the summits, but we were able to work really well. I felt my form improve over the days. I’m coming out of a good winter, without any problems. I was able to train as I wanted. So inevitably, I am very motivated for my first races of the season at the Muscat Classic and the Tour of Oman. These are two events that I will race for the first time, but I know that the courses suit me pretty well. We will have an ambitious AG2R CITROËN TEAM, mixed with climbers and classic racers, all with the desire to perform well.”

The AG2R CITROËN TEAM has already been on the podium in the Tour of Oman. In 2016, Romain Bardet took 2nd place in the general classification behind Vincenzo Nibali.




UCI Allows Russian Athletes Back to the World Champs on Certain Conditions
Riders from Russia and Belarus are allowed to compete again in events on the UCI international calendar under certain conditions. According to a press release from the International Cycling Union. From March 1, 2022, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Russians and Belarusians were not welcome at European and World Championships.

We will not see Russian and Belarusian national teams and/or national selections in events for the time being, but individual riders may be able to participate again. The UCI supports a resolution adopted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on 25 January 2023. It states that the participation of Russian and/or Belarusian athletes and officials in international events of the UCI should be possible again “under strict conditions”.

One of those conditions is that the riders participate in the competition in question as ‘neutral athletes’. They may not represent their state nor any organisation within their country. As a second condition, the UCI says that only “athletes who fully respect the Olympic Charter” may participate. This means that an athlete has not actively defended the war in Ukraine. In addition, he or she must subscribe to the World Anti-Doping Code. This will be checked with every athlete who is registered for an event.

From 3 to 13 August, the Super World Championships will take place in Glasgow, Scotland. There will be races for World titles in thirteen disciplines, including road, track and cross-country mountain biking. A Russian rider like Aleksandr Vlasov, who was not welcome in Wollongong in 2022, will have the opportunity to participate in this World champs.

In the statement, the UCI reiterates that it condemns the aggression towards Ukraine by the Russian government. It also emphasises that support for Ukrainian athletes will continue. Furthermore, all other measures imposed by the UCI on 1 March 2022 will remain in force. All applications of Russian and Belarus events for the UCI calendar are denied and national championships of Russia and Belarus are not registered on the UCI calendar.

Vlasov might go to Glasgow:


UAE Tour – FEB 09 – 12
Albert Timmer – Team DSM coach
“We are looking forward to starting the new season with our Women’s program at the first edition of the UAE Tour. The first day should likely end with a bunch sprint, while we could see some echelons on stage two. On the third day, we will see the big GC fight with the climb of Jebel Hafeet, before an expected sprint on the last day. Our goal will be to focus on the sprints with Charlotte as the team’s finisher and work on the new setup with our sprint train. On the mountain day, we will look after Esmée before she can test herself on the tough climb.”

Pfeiffer Georgi (GBR)
Daniek Hengeveld (NED)
Franziska Koch (GER)
Charlotte Kool (NED)
Esmée Peperkamp (NED)
Maeve Plouffe (AUS).

Figueira Champions Classic – FEB 12
Pim Ligthart – Team DSM coach: “The inaugural edition of this Portuguese one-day race will be our first race in Europe this season. We would like to get the same momentum going on European soil as we did across the world with the strong results and performances from the team in Australia and Argentina. Figueira Champions Classic on paper looks like a hard final with some steep climbs like we see at Liège-Bastone-Liège before a flatter finish. We will race with an open mind and look for opportunities with Oscar and Kevin if the race explodes on the climbs.”

Pavel Bittner (CZE)
John Degenkolb (GER)
Nils Eekhoff (NED)
Jonas Hvideberg (NOR)
Oscar Onley (GBR)
Casper van Uden (NED)
Kevin Vermaerke (USA).

Pfeiffer Georgi to UAE Tour:


FDJ-SUEZ Critical of the Giro and the Vuelta
Stephen Delcourt, the team manager of the women’s FDJ-SUEZ team, has criticised the organisers of La Vuelta Femenina and the Giro d’Italia Donne to Velonews. Both Grand Tours have still not revealed the women’s route, much to Delcourt’s dissatisfaction.

“We have been talking a lot lately about things like professionalisation, prize money and visibility, but we want to focus on the three grand tours, for example. However, there is only one round that respects the women and that is the Tour de France Femmes. At the moment we still have no clarity about the routes of the Giro and Vuelta. And that while the Vuelta already starts in the first week of May. There are only some rumours, but if we take the women seriously, we really have to deal with this.”

Delcourt didn’t stop there: “I know that the UCI is really trying to improve certain things, but I don’t see such a development with organisers. This is also the case with the teams themselves. I see a lot of development with ten teams, but we have to wait for the rest. For example, our ladies can already handle a two-week Tour de France, but this only applies to about ten teams.”

The current calendar also causes some headaches for Delcourt. “Take the Simac Ladies Tour now. We are not at the start there because safety cannot be guaranteed. In addition, we do not want to forget the WorldTour races in Vårgårda (no longer on the calendar) and the Trofeo Alfreda Binda. We would like to help, but it is difficult for everyone. Something is missing.”

Sebastián Unzué, manager of the Movistar women’s team, was already very critical of the Women’s WorldTour calendar. In recent years, the number of races on the program has grown considerably, but according to the Spaniard, the consequences of this are not purely positive. “The interests of the teams are not taken into account. The basis is not in order, we have too many races and too few riders.”



Amstel Gold Race Extends Women’s Edition by 30 kilometres
The Netherlands’ only cycling classic, the Amstel Gold Race is on Sunday 16 April. During a meeting at the Shimano Experience Center in Valkenburg aan de Geul, the organisers announced that the Amstel Gold Race for women will be about thirty kilometres longer.

Leontien van Moorsel, course director of the women’s edition of the Amstel Gold Race: “The race will be extended to a total length of 156 kilometres. A consequence of the development of women’s cycling. You see that nowadays more and more big races are over 140 kilometres. In addition, various top riders from the peloton have also asked if we could make the race a little longer.”

An Amstel Gold Race for women has been held 2017. Marta Cavalli was the winner in 2022, after Marianne Vos, Katarzyna Niewiadoma, Chantal van den Broek-Blaak and Anna van der Breggen were winners in previous years. The presentation on Sunday morning is at the same time as the men’s. The start on the Vrijthof in Maastricht and the finish in Valkenburg are also at the same locations. In 2022, the organisers also equalised the prize money for men and women.

“The route is not only getting longer, but also harder,” continued Van Moorsel. “Three additional climbs brings the total to 21 climbs and the number of altimeters rises to 1,700. In the initial phase, we will make an extra loop towards Sittard-Geleen. From Ubachsberg the peloton rides to Simpelveld and Wahlwiller, where the Kruisberg, Eyserbosweg, Fromberg and Keutenberg are successively visited. The well-known final loop of 18 kilometres with the Geulhemmerberg, Bemelerberg and Cauberg will be ridden four times instead of three from 2023,” said Van Moorsel.

Leo van Vliet, course director of the men’s race: “It was quite a puzzle to solve, but we are proud that we succeeded. Of course we have to ensure that the two races do not run into each other, but we also have to take into account, for example, the number of passages in Valkenburg and the live TV broadcast. As a result, this year, for the first time, women start earlier than men. In addition, the men also make the extra loop towards Sittard-Geleen and the first passage of the Cauberg is cancelled. The final of the Amstel Gold Race remains the same.”



Muscat Classic/Tour of Oman 2023 Punchy Talents Take on the Sultanate
A familiar face with a new kit. The defending winner of the Tour of Oman Jan Hirt returns to the Sultanate, which will now host two races with the maiden edition of the Muscat Classic (February 10) on the eve of the 12th Tour of Oman. But the Czech climber comes to defend new colours: Soudal Quick-Step’s, where he joins forces with one of his main rivals from last year’s Tour of Oman, Fausto Masnada, winner of a thrilling stage 4 in Muscat and runner-up in the final overall standings. The Wolfpack is once again expected to shine in the desert, with other assets such as Mauri Vansevenant to shake the race and Tim Merlier to show his speed.

Some of the strongest opposition should come from Hirt’s former team, Intermarché-Circus-Wanty. In 2022, Rein Taaramäe was an essential asset to propel the Czech climber towards victory. This time, the Estonian veteran partners up with South-Africa’s pocket climber Louis Meintjes, who made history again last year with a stage win in La Vuelta and a place in the top 10 of the Tour de France… just ahead of Alexey Lutsenko, whose mix of punch and power have already granted him many successes in the Sultanate.

A 2-time winner of the overall standings of the Tour of Oman (2018, 19), Lutsenko has notably won stages up Jabal Al Akhdhar (Green Mountain) and in Al Bustan, where the finish of the Muscat Classic is set. Will he launch another furious attack? Or will Astana Qazaqstan Team play one of their other strong cards to claim more success in Oman? The Asian team are used to shining in the Sultanate and they’re coming with the British icon Mark Cavendish (2 stage wins in the Tour of Oman) as well as the Under 23 world champion Yevgeniy Fedorov. Lutsenko also won the U23 rainbow jersey, in 2012, and so did Kristoffer Halvorsen (2016), the road captain for Uno-X as the Norwegian keeps growing towards their first participation in the Tour de France.

Among the strongest teams in the world, UAE Team Emirates also line up an elite sprinter, Pascal Ackermann, along punchy options such as Diego Ulissi and Davide Formolo. Classic experts like AG2R Citroën’s Greg Van Avermaet and Oliver Naesen will also be willing to bring battle on any occasion while climbers such as Ivan Sosa (Movistar) and Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) eye the final battles up Green Mountain, where Jesus Herrada (Cofidis) hopes to shine again (3rd in 2018, 6th in 2019).

Buchmann will join forces with the winner of the 2022 Tour de l’Avenir, Cian Uijtdebroeks who, on the eve of his 20th anniversary, appears ready to battle with the best riders in the world. The Belgian wonderkid won’t be the only young talent taking on the desert, as he faces the likes of Andrii Ponomar (Team Arkéa-Samsic), Maxim Van Gils (Lotto Dstny), Roger Adria (Equipo Kern Pharma), Matteo Jorgenson (Movistar)… As for the Oman national champion, Faisal Almammari, he turned 23 years old last month and is more than willing to show the world the local grit.


Key points:
Defending winner of the Tour of Oman, Jan Hirt returns to the Sultanate with a new team, Soudal Quick-Step, where he joins forces with his runner-up from last year, Fausto Masnada.
Ø A 2-time winner of the race, Alexey Lutsenko is also back at the helm of Astana Qazaqstan Team alongside Mark Cavendish, participating in his first races with the Asian team.
Ø Fastmen such as Pascal Ackermann, puncheurs like Davide Formolo and climbers as talented as Emanuel Buchmann and Cian Uijtdebroeks also eye success on the explosive course of the Muscat Classic and the demanding roads of the Tour of Oman.

18 teams: the main participants

Bingoal WB: Kenneth Van Rooy
Intermarché-Circus-Wanty: Louis Meintjes
Lotto Dstny: Thomas De Gendt, Maxim Van Gils
Soudal Quick-Step: Jan Hirt, Tim Merlier

AG2R Citroën Team: Greg Van Avermaet, Oliver Naesen
Cofidis: Jesus Herrada, Axel Zingle
Team Arkéa-Samsic: Jenthe Biermans, Andrii Ponomar

Bora-Hansgrohe: Emanuel Buchmann, Cian Uijtdebroeks

JCL Team Ukyo: Benjamin Prades

Astana Qazaqstan Team: Mark Cavendish, Alexey Lutsenko

Terengganu Polygon Cycling: Jambaljamts Sainbayar

Uno-X Pro Cycling Team: Kristoffer Halvorsen

Oman National Team: Faisal Almammari

Burgos-BH: Miguel Angel Fernandez
Equipo Kern Pharma: Roger Adria
Movistar: Ivan Sosa, Matteo Jorgenson

United Arab Emirates
UAE Team Emirates: Pascal Ackermann, Davide Formolo

United States of America
Human Powered Health: Stanislaw Aniolkowski

Oman teaser:


uae tour23
World Champion Confirmed for the UAE Tour
Remco Evenepoel joins cycling superstars Sam Bennett, Adam Yates and Caleb Ewan for the 2023 edition of the one and only UCI WorldTour race in the Middle East.

san juan 23

Abu Dhabi Sports Council, the organisers of the UAE Tour, announce the first names of riders expected to participate in the 2023 edition of the UAE Tour, taking place from 20-26 February which includes UCI road World Champion Remco Evenepoel.

This year’s edition of the race, starting and finishing in Abu Dhabi, will provide a tough challenge across the peloton. The route features four stages suited to sprinters, two mountain stages best suited to the climbers and a high-speed, 17.2 km long team time trial.

With less than one month to go, we discover the riders expected to bring all the racing excitement to the Middle East.

Remco Evenepoel (Soudal–Quick-Step)
Remco Evenepoel (b. 2000) is a Belgian cyclist currently riding for UCI WorldTeam Soudal–Quick-Step. In 2022 Evenepoel secured victories at the UCI Road World Championships in Wollongong, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Clásica San Sebastián and La Vuelta a España. His recent victories also includes two General Classification wins at the Baloise Belgium Tour (2019, 2021) along with claiming the leader’s jersey at the 2022 Tour of Norway. Also Having participated in the first UAE Tour in 2019, which saw him finish in the top 15 of Stage 3 (atop Jebel Hafeet), Evenepoel pulled out of the tour after crashing in Stage 4. This year he returns to the unique roads of the Emirates with the goal of adding the UAE Tour to his impressive palmarès.

Adam Yates (UAE Team Emirates)
Adam Yates (b. 1992) is a British cyclist who currently rides for UAE Team Emirates. The GC rider has had an extraordinary career so far, which has seen him as the first British rider to win the young rider classification in the Tour de France (2016). In 2020, Yates secured the Red jersey of the UAE Tour for Mitchelton-Scott (now Team Jayco–AlUla) after two podium finishes, coming first on Stage 3 and third on Stage 4 of the tour. He was runner up in the 2022 and 2021 editions of the UAE Tour.

san juan 23 st1

Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe)
Sam Bennett (b. 1990) is an Irish cyclist, currently riding for UCI World TourTeam Bora-Hansgrohe. Bennett is a world class sprinter, winning 10 GrandTour stages since beginning his professional career in 2011. Taking home the Green (sprint points) jersey in the 2020 Tour de France, Bennett is a force to be reckoned with in the fast finishes. With three previous stage wins at the UAE Tour, Bennett is no stranger to victory, and this year he is eager to taste victory once again in the Emirates.

Caleb Ewan (Lotto-DSTNY)
Caleb Ewan (b. 1994) is an Australian cyclist, known for his sprinting prowess, and currently rides for UCI ProTeam Lotto-DSTNY. Since beginning his career in 2014, the Australian pocket rocket has taken 59 victories, with 10 GrandTour stages included within that. With three previous stage wins at the UAE Tour, and a points jersey classification win at the 2020 edition, Ewan knows what it takes to win stages at the UAE Tour and is looking to add more stage wins at this year’s edition of the race.

A full list of riders will be announced in due course. To find out more about the UAE Tour, including details of the official race route, jerseys and sponsors, visit www.theuaetour.com

uae tour


Longo Borghini, Cavalli, Brown, Bastianelli and Wiebes Ready to Light Up the First-Ever UAE Tour Women
The provisional entry list of the first UCI Women’s WorldTour race in the Middle East is revealed and features some of the world’s best climbers, sprinters and finisseurs.

Abu Dhabi Sports Council are pleased to announce the provisional entry list for the first-ever edition of the UAE Tour Women, taking place from 9-12 February.

Many of the world’s best riders will come to the UAE to ride the four stages of the inaugural edition of the UAE Tour Women, starting in Dubai and finishing in Abu Dhabi.

The fast wheels of the peloton will have three stages (1,2 and 4) to fight for the win and claim the Green Jersey, while the climbers will target Stage 3 and the 10km long mighty ascent of Jebel Hafeet to try and cross the line first, topping the GC and wear the Red Jersey.

With just a few days to go, we discover the riders expected to shine at the UAE Tour Women.

Marta Cavalli (FDJ-Suez) arrives to the UAE Tour Women after some great results in 2022, including the 2nd place in the Giro d’Italia Donne and the triumphs at Amstel Gold Race and La Fleche Wallonne. Cavalli’s team also includes Grace Brown in its ranks, the Australian was runner up at the 2022 Women’s Tour, at the World Championships ITT and at Liège-Bastogne-Liège Femmes (both in 2022 and 2020). This year she won the Santos Tour Down Under.

Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) amassed an impressive 35 victories since the start of her career, including bronze medals in the 2016 and 2020 Olympic Road Race. Most recently she claimed a GC win at the Women’s Tour in Great Britain, only two months after winning the Paris-Roubaix Femmes in 2022. She has claimed victory in both the Strade Bianche Donne (2017) and Tour of Flanders (2015) alongside holding nine National Championship jerseys in her locker.

Lorena Wiebes (Team SD Worx) secured an extraordinary total of 22 victories in 2022, including two stages at the Tour de France Femmes and claiming the top podium spot in the GC at the Simac Ladies Tour, at the RideLondon Classique and at the European Road title. The Flying Dutchwoman will certainly be one of the protagonists for the flat and fast stages of the UAE Tour Women.

Marta Bastianelli (UAE Team ADQ) is not short on experience in the peloton, beginning her career in 2006, and taking 42 professional wins, including the World Championships Road Race in 2007 and the Ronde van Vlaanderen (Tour of Flanders) in 2019. Bastianelli is no doubt a rider to watch at the UAE Tour Women this year, alongside her teammate Silvia Persico (UAE Team ADQ). The 25 years old Italian took 3rd place bronze medal at the 2022 Road World championships and top 10’s in the general classification at the 2022 Tour de France Femmes and Giro d’Italia Donne, respectively.

The provisional entry lists also includes experienced riders such as the 2022 Belgian road race champion Kim De Baat (Fenix-Deceuninck), and two-time stage winner of the Giro d’Italia Internazionale Femminile and winner of the 2013 Omloop Het Nieuwsblad WE Tiffany Cromwell (Canyon//SRAM Racing).

To find out more about the UAE Tour Women, including details of the official race route, jerseys and sponsors, visit www.theuaetourwomen.com.



Many Town Councils Want to be part of the 75th Anniversary of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana
The director of the VCV Gran Premi Banc Sabadell, Ángel Casero, takes stock of the recently finished VCV 2023 with the victory of the Portuguese Rui Costa. The Valencian former cyclist acknowledges that the finish line at l’Oceanogràfic is here to stay.

The director of the VCV – Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana Gran Premi Banc Sabadell 2023 takes stock just 24 hours after the end of one of the most exciting VCVs in living memory. “The balance of the VCV 2023 is very positive. We have managed to maintain the uncertainty about who was going to win until the end, and that is very important. We are more than satisfied with how this 74th edition has gone. In addition, the weather has respected us, which always helps”, Casero assures.

“The route has not disappointed. Surely we can find a tougher summit finish than the two we have had in this VCV 2023, but it has been shown that, with those 30-40 kilometres after the mountain climbs, we have kept the fan’s interest in who was going to win until the last day”, Casero affirms.

The director of the VCV has words for two specific sites on this year’s route. “The discovery of La Frontera has been very good. It has allowed up to six riders to have a chance until the last kilometre”, says Casero, while confirming that “the finish at l’Oceanogràfic de València is here to stay. We are very happy with the way it was seen on television and the fans’ reaction to this new finish line has been very positive”.

Casero also offers what, for him, was the key to Rui Costa’s victory. “He is a veteran rider, with a thousand battles behind him, and he knew how to take advantage of that moment of vigilance among the favourites to get away and win the stage and the overall”.

The reactions within the cycling world to the VCV 2023 have been very positive, acknowledges its director. “Obviously there are details to be polished and the teams are the first to let us know, but the balance is more than positive. We are an organisation that always wants to grow every year and we are already working to improve those details for the next edition. The international referees have congratulated us for the growth and the quality of the race, so we are very proud”, says Ángel Casero.

Finally, he gives some insight about the VCV 2024, but without revealing any details for the moment. “The VCV 2024 will be the 75th anniversary of the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana. We can’t reveal anything yet, but we have a lot of ideas in our heads and very soon we will be able to start communicating them. We have many requests from many town councils all over the Comunitat Valenciana to participate in this 75th edition and we want to prepare a spectacular route”, concludes Ángel Casero.

Director of the VCV Gran Premi Banc Sabadell Ángel Casero:


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