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EUROTRASH Moto Monday!

There were two incidents at the week-end where motorbikes may have affected the final outcome of the race. We take a look at both in today’s ‘TOP STORY’ and we have the race reports, results, rider quotes and video from Clasica San Sebastián, Tour de Pologne and the Prudential RideLondon Classic. Richie Porte to BMC, Tom Danielson positive, Nairo Quintana will ride la Vuelta a España and a video interview with Peter Sagan. EuroTrash Monday coffee time.

TOP STORY: Moto Madness!
There seems to have been a lot of riders having problems with race motorbikes. Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) was hit by a moto as he rode at the front of the escape group on the Col du Glandon on stage 18 of the Tour de France a couple of weeks ago and then on Saturday BMC’s Greg Van Avermaet was run into as he tried to win the Clasica San Sebastián. On Sunday Sep Vanmarcke (LottoNL-Jumbo) was nearly knocked off as he soloed towards the finish of the Prudential RideLondon. Why is this happening? Possibly there are too many vehicles on the road during a big race, but with so many media outlets all wanting the information it’s not surprising. The BMC team think it is negligence on the part of the race organizers and the UCI are dragging their feet. Here is their take on the subject:

Statement: San Sebastian Motorbike Crash:
BMC Racing Team President/General Manager Jim Ochowicz has issued a statement following Saturday’s crash by a “radio tour” motorbike that took down Greg Van Avermaet while he was leading Clasica San Sebastian.

“Greg was robbed and the BMC Racing Team was robbed when this happened. I am appalled that this could occur in a WorldTour race.

“This is the second time this year we have had an incident with a local organizer of a WorldTour race where they have acted in a scandalous fashion. The UCI has been nowhere in this to resolve the problem. This comes back to safety issues in races where the local organizer of WorldTour events and the UCI are negligent in providing a safe racing environment.

“This was not a sporting incident. This was caused by pure negligence, which cost the team millions of dollars in lost publicity. Therefore, we plan to explore every legal option available to us.”

Greg van Avermaet being hit by moto on Saturday in San Sebastián:

And Vanmarcke in London on Sunday:

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Clásica San Sebastián – Donostia Klasikoa 2015
The 2015 Clasica San Sebastián will go down as one of the craziest in the race’s 35 year history. First the airplane that handles the communications had to make an emergency landing, so there was no TV pictures. Then as BMC’s Greg Van Avermaet tried to make his solo winning attempt a race moto took his rear wheel away and then crashed on top of the bike smashing it and the Belgians chance of continuing. Young British rider Adam Yates attacked on the Bordako Tontorra climb and soloed to the finish with 15 seconds on a chase group of all the top men: Gilbert, Valverde, Rodriguez, Mollema, Dan Martin, Barguil and Urán. Yates had not realized that he was at the front of the race as he had not heard anything on his race radio and so did not realise he had won. He had to be convinced of his victory, but win he had.

Eight riders made up the break of the day: Manuel Boaro (Tinkoff-Saxo), Valerio Agnoli (Astana), Dennis Vannendert (Lotto Soudal), Nathan Haas (Cannondale-Garmin), Maarten Wynants (LottoNL-Jumbo), Thomas Degand (IAM Cycling), Lluis Mas (Caja Rural-RGA Seguros) and Romain Hardy (Cofidis), their maximum lead was never bigger than 3 minutes as Movistar had them on a short leash. On the second assent of the Jaizkibel, Boaro attacked, but it was a useless move on his own so far out. His move instigated a group of 16 riders to escape on the Alto Arkale climb with 30 kilometers to go. Gilbert was amongst the group and worked hard, but Movistar and Katusha were in charge of the chase for all the action on the Bordako Tontorra climb. Van Avermaet was first to go and possibly could have held on for the win, but the moto stopped that. Next was Yates, he attacked and passed the helpless Van Avermaet at the side of the road and went on to win, believing that other riders were ahead of him. The chase group didn’t work together and allowed Yates to take the biggest win of his career. Gilbert beat Valverde in the sprint for second place.

Race report HERE.

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Race winner, Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEDGE): “Incredible, I won, but I didn’t know I had won. I spoke on the radio to my sport director but because of the crowds the radio was too quiet. For sure this is the biggest win of my career. And it’s my first victory this year. On the final climb there was a breakaway still up the road. Then there was a lot of carnage on the climb, there was a crash with a motorbike, and so I just went full gas. At the time I didn’t know if I had reached the lead or not. In 2014 I went to the Tour of Basque Country got sick and crashed, last year’s San Sebastian I crashed and this year’s Tour of Basque Country I crashed again, normally when I come here I don’t do anything, just crash. It’s fantastic, hopefully I can come back next year and defend my title.”

2nd, Philippe Gilbert (BMC): “On the main climb of the day, we had Damiano Caruso in the break with 16 riders and I decided to bridge to this group, I was thinking this was a good move because everyone was pulling. But suddenly, everyone stopped pulling and the main group came back at the bottom of the last climb. The good thing is that I did not have to fight to be in a good position there because I was already in the front. There was a small difference between the groups and I saw Samuel ahead. He told me before the race that if he was there in this situation, he would pull for me. So that was nice and he really helped me.”

3rd, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar): “The team was impressive and I thank all of them for what they did for me today. Still, Yates was really strong and we must congratulate him for that well-deserved victory. We knew he would be up there with the favorites, since he already showed he could do well before his crash last year, and today he timed his efforts perfectly and said ‘here I am’ to everyone. There wasn’t much cooperation in my group either, and we had to fight for second place in the sprint. It was also surprising when Gilbert and Dani Moreno bridged to our pursuit group almost into the final corner, launching the sprint right afterwards. Fortunately, I could overtake Dani into the final meters to finish in third. It was awful not to be able to win and reward the team for their immense job, but this podium is also important. Now, we’ll take some rest and start preparing for the Vuelta – we must try and do our best there.”

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) attacked on the last climb, but a TV moto ran into him from behind: “It was a steep climb and the moto driver was too close to me, he ran right into the back of my bike. My frame was broken and my back wheel was broken. So the race was over for me. I don’t know what the moto driver was thinking. He did not say anything to me. Maybe he just gave it a little too much gas and ran into me. The bad thing is that I think I could have won the race, I had a big gap. Maybe Yates could have come back, but I think I still could have been there in the sprint. It is not every year you can win a classic like San Sebastian. So this is really disappointing.

Thomas Degand (IAM Cycling): “Along with Aleksejs Saramotins, I was tasked with taking off with the breaks. I managed to find the opening in the company of a good group of riders after about 15 kilometers. Despite working well together, we never really were able to take more than 4’50” on the pack because Movistar was keeping close watch. I was caught the last time we passed the finish line with 15 kilometers to go, but I have a feeling of having accomplished my task for the day. It was a good day at the front of the race, which has also reassured me in view of my preparation for the Vuelta.”

Clásica San Sebastián – Donostia Klasikoa Result:
1. Adam Yates (GB) Orica-GreenEDGE at 5:30:22
2. Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC at 0:15
3. Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar
4. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha
5. Joaquim Rodríguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha
6. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek
7. Daniel Martin (Irl) Cannondale-Garmin
8. Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx – Quick-Step
9. Warren Barguil (Fra) Giant-Alpecin
10. Rigoberto Urán (Col) Etixx – Quick-Step.

San Sebastián final kilometers:

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Tour de Pologne 2015
Stage 1 of the Tour de Pologne in Warszawa was 12 laps of a 12.2 kilometers circuit for a total distance of 122km. Three riders escaped: Adrian Kurek (CCC Sprandi Polkowice), Pawel Bernas (Poland) and Matej Mohoric (Cannondale-Garmin). The escape was always going to fail, but Kurek won all KOM points to take the mountains jersey and Mohoric was the most aggressive rider of the day.

When the three breakaway riders were caught the sprinters teams set-up their lead-out trains for the sprint. Orica-GreenEDGE and Giant-Alpecin were in control for the final lap and Giant performed perfectly to take Kittel through the last bend and put him on the front to unleash his kick for the line. Orica-GreenEDGE’s Caleb Ewan nearly caused an upset by coming round the German on the bend, but his speed took him too wide for the win.

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Stage winner, Marcel Kittel (Giant-Alpecin): “I’m really, really happy to be back at the Tour de Pologne. I celebrated my first World Tour victories here, it was a breakthrough for me in my career, so to be back in this country at this race is special for me. Also because it was a very difficult time, I was really looking forward to the races here for the wins. For a sprinter it was good race, it was a tricky final, that made it special. A lot of teams wanted to do a sprint, then it was difficult to stay at the front so I have to say thank you to my teammates – they did a great job by keeping me in a good position, staying calm, and that was our advantage today. You can say the last corner is not a normal sprint, it was quite dangerous because you have only 70 meters to the finish line after the corner, so you have to do all the hard work before the corner, and go with high speed into it… You saw today with Caleb Ewan it was pretty close, and it felt a bit like Moto GP coming into that last corner, fighting for the win, nobody knows if he can make it first to the finish line, so it was exciting. We want to defend the jersey, and that means we have to win the stages that are coming up, definitely the next two, I don’t know about the fourth one. I’m very relieved, really. This morning I woke up and I thought I could cut the pressure that was in myself with a knife because it was so tense. I was super relieved to win, because it’s a long time since I last won – it has proved to myself that I can come through difficult situations. I’m happy I had my teammates around me today they did a good job for me and that is what we will do the next days. I think you can’t compare it [my season] at all to last year, and I don’t want to do that. For me it’s all about the next weeks coming up – I have a really big focus on the Tour de Pologne, also Hamburg, Plouay classics, they are the most important races for me that I have left this year. [Legs] Good. I felt really confident already when I travelled here to Poland, I did a lot of motor pacing. I tried to do everything as good as possible and I was really focused. I’m glad that it worked now already on the first stage and I will see what’s coming up in the next days.”

3rd on the stage, Niccolo Bonifazio (Lampre-Merida): “The team gave me the opportunity of being the captain in today’s sprint. I appreciated this and I really liked the support that my team mates gave me for the sprint. When we began to organize the approach to the sprint, our recovery to the head of the bunch was good, Ferrari and Modolo were great in protect me from the wind. I made a pair of mistakes and I lost the wheel of Sacha, wasting energies, but I succeeded in being in the front position after the hill. Kittel was some meters ahead of me before the final bend, I tried to cover it at the maximum speed, but it was not enough to overtake him. My goal was the victory but, if I consider the value of Kittel and Ewan, this third place is good.”

World Champion Michal Kwiatkowski (Etixx – Quick-Step): “Today Polish fans gave me so much power and energy; thanks to that in the end I managed not to lose seconds that are important in the GC. Today we had to be careful, especially before Karowa Street (the one and only climb with a mountain prime). It was important to find the right place in the peloton and my team really helped me do this.”

Crash victim, Larry Warbasse (IAM Cycling): “It’s a shame because I was to place Matteo Pelucchi near the front of the pack again. It was just at the foot of the climb, just before the road becomes a little narrower and technical. And in the turn, I started to get out of the saddle and I do not know why, but my hand slipped. I missed my handlebars and the chain jumped. A crash is never a welcomed thing, and this one was especially ill-timed since I had Matteo on my wheel. We crashed together. Fortunately for us, this was a crash without any big injury. My leg and hip are beat up a bit, but hopefully it is nothing serious.”

Tour de Pologne Stage 1 Result:
1. Marcel Kittel (Ger) Giant-Alpecin in 2:43:13
2. Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE
3. Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Lampre-Merida
4. Dennis Van Winden (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo
5. Sébastien Turgot (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
6. Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Lotto Soudal
7. Andrea Guardini (Ita) Astana
8. Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ.fr
9. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx – Quick-Step
10. Ion Izagirre (Spa) Movistar.

Tour de Pologne Overall After Stage 1:
1. Marcel Kittel (Ger) Giant-Alpecin in 2:43:03
2. Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE at 0:04
3. Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Lampre-Merida at 0:06
4. Dennis Van Winden (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo at 0:10
5. Sébastien Turgot (Fra) AG2R-La Mondiale
6. Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Lotto Soudal
7. Andrea Guardini (Ita) Astana
8. Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ.fr
9. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Etixx – Quick-Step
10. Ion Izagirre (Spa) Movistar.

Tour de Pologne stage 1:

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Prudential RideLondon Classic 2015
Jean-Pierre Drucker (BMC) won the sprint from a group of three riders who had been part of the break of the day that escaped with 70 kilometers to go in the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic on Sunday. Drucker got the better of Mike Teunissen (LottoNL-Jumbo) and Ben Swift (Team Sky) at the line in the English capital.

There was a fair amount of action before the eventual sprint finale as 5 riders went clear in the early part of the race with a 4 minute lead at one point, by the time the race hit the main obstacle of the day, Box Hill, the gap was only 20 seconds. Incessant attacks from the peloton saw the leaders caught and a new lead group of 14 riders formed at the top of Box Hill. It was Sep Vanmarcke (LottoNL-Jumbo) who ignited the winning break to be joined by Drucker, Teunissen, Swift, Kristian Sbaragli (MTN-Qhubeka), Leigh Howard (Orica-GreenEDGE), Kenneth Van Rooy (Lotto Soudal) and Fernando Gaviria (Etixx – Quick-Step). The lead was around one minute coming into the final 25 kilometers, but as the leaders attacked each other the lead increase to nearly two minutes, but the group split. Vanmarcke nearly succeeded to solo for the win, but he was reeled in for the three to gain a slight lead on the others at the line.

Race winner, Jean-Pierre Drucker (BMC): “I’m a fast guy and so I was pretty confident, I watched Ben Swift because he was nervous and wanted to do something here. I focused on him and his wheel. It ended up good for me. I’m a sprinter who loves a pretty hard race, so we tried to make it a hard race. It was perfect for us.”

2nd, Mike Teunissen (LottoNL-Jumbo): “We had to try something because there were a lot of good sprinters in that breakaway, we did that, but it was not good enough, unfortunately. I tried to put Ben Swift (Sky) and Drucker under pressure. Swift chased me two times and broke himself. I was close in the end and I think that I should have waited for the sprint. I’m fed up with that.”

3rd, Ben Swift (Sky): “It was a nice race to come back, it was an aggressive last 50km and then a super aggressive last 10km. I just started to cramp a little and I was just lacking that final bit – but hopefully each race I do I’ll get that bit stronger and get that racing rhythm back. Tomorrow I travel out to the Tour of Denmark to start that race and then I’ll go out to Brazil to do the Olympic test event and see what that’s all about. There was a lot of support out there and I saw a few banners for myself. That’s just how cycling is in the UK now it’s massive. But to be honest on that last 50km it’s pretty full on. You see everything and you can hear a lot but you can’t really take it all in. There are a lot of potholes out there you’re trying to dodge!”

4th and race protagonist, Sep Vanmarcke (LottoNL-Jumbo): “I took the matters in my hand on the penultimate climb, there were 70 kilometers to go from there. From that moment, it became a real fight. It was good to see that the whole team was attentive. In the end, a group of eight riders were able to stay in front and Mike and I were there. With 15 kilometers to go, I tried to finish it on my own. I was able to push through during the first five kilometers, but afterwards I was slowing down a little bit. It’s a pity that they caught me with two kilometers to go.”

7th, Kenneth Van Rooy (Lotto Soudal): “We didn’t have a rider of our team in the early breakaway of five, but that wasn’t a problem. The race stayed closed till the ascent of Box Hill, more than fifty kilometres before the finish. Jens Debusschere got in front there, but afterwards all came back together. A bit later I took off with two riders and five others joined us. At the end I was dropped together with Fernando Gaviria. In the beginning I didn’t go full gas, because I didn’t know what was happening in the background. When the sports director came next to me he informed me about the situation and I did my part of the work. I tried to follow as long as I could. I amazed myself. It’s such a difference with a U23 race. It’s nice to set this performance. The riders in the team welcomed me and Dries Van Gestel with a lot of enthusiasm. They reassured us. I want to get lots of experience during this traineeship and enjoy the opportunity the team gives me.”

Prudential RideLondon Classic Result:
1. Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) BMC in 4:47:47
2. Mike Teunissen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo
3. Ben Swift (GB) Sky
4. Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) LottoNL-Jumbo at 0:02
5. Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN-Qhubeka at 0:03
6. Leigh Howard (Aus) Orica-GreenEDGE at 0:04
7. Kenneth Van Rooy (Bel) Lotto Soudal at 0:28
8. Fernando Gaviria (Col) Etixx-QuickStep at 0:49
9. Moreno Hofland (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo at 1:00
10. Yves Lampaert (Bel) Etixx – Quick-Step at 1:01.

Action from London:

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Tom Danielson Positive
Cannondale-Garmin’s Tom Danielson has tested positive for synthetic testosterone in an out of competition test on the 9th of July and will not start the Tour of Utah. The rider made the announcement via Twitter:

“Tonight has been one of the worst nights of my life. While I was eating dinner with my team the night before Tour of Utah I received a call”. He continued to explain that USADA notified him that an out of competition test on July 9th has tested positive for, “from what I understand”, synthetic testosterone.

He denies taking any banned substance and has asked for the ‘B’ sample to be analyzed.

Danielson in the 2014 Tour of Utah:
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Nairo Quintana to ride Vuelta a España
The Colombian will join Alejandro Valverde at August 22nd depart from Puerto Banús after recent GC podium finish in Tour de France. The Movistar Team confirmed on Monday that Nairo Quintana, runner-up in the 2015 Tour de France and winner of the 2014 Giro, will take the start of the 70th Vuelta a España. Quintana and Valverde – current leader of the UCI WorldTour standings and 2009 Vuelta champion, having climbed onto the final podium six times – will be back together to chase big results after a great combined performance in the recent ‘Grande Boucle’.

The full roster of that Eusebio Unzué will bring to the start at Puerto Banús on August 22nd will be confirmed in a few days’ time.

Quintana, white jersey at the Tour:
Tour de France 2015 - stage 10

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Porte Will Join BMC Racing Team In 2016
Reigning Australian national time trial champion Richie Porte will be part of the BMC Racing Team for the 2016 season, President/General Manager Jim Ochowicz announced Saturday.

“We officially welcome Richie to the BMC Racing Team,” Ochowicz said. “Richie’s addition to our roster for next year adds extra muscle and a wealth of experience. It also gives us the chance to separate and/or unite our strategies and goals as we see fit throughout the season.”

Porte, 30, has won nine races this season, including the overall titles at Paris-Nice, the Giro del Trentino and Volta a Catalunya. Ranked fifth in the UCI WorldTour rider standings, he most recently helped Chris Froome (Team Sky) win the Tour de France.

Porte said he could not pass up another opportunity to be part of a team that has featured another Australian, 2011 Tour de France winner and past world road champion Cadel Evans, the past five seasons.

“I was close to coming to the BMC Racing Team four years ago,” Porte said. “This time, it was a hard decision, but the right decision. Obviously, Cadel left his legacy with the team. When he was racing, it was almost like it was partially an Australian team. There were always so many Aussies at the races with BMC caps on. With them still having Rohan Dennis and Campbell Flakemore – who is from Tasmania like me – the team still does have a fairly Australian flavor.”

Porte said his objectives for next year are straight-forward: to keep his winning ways going.

“I want to win races like Paris-Nice and Catalunya again and I think next year at the Tour de France, why not have Tejay van Garderen and me there? We get along well,” he said. “It is exciting to be going to a team where I am going to have so many opportunities for myself to win races.”

In keeping with BMC Racing Team policy, no other terms or conditions of the contract were released.

Richie Porte working for Froome, same job for Tejay?
Tour de France 2015 - stage 10

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Peter Sagan Interview
Great little interview by Belgian TV with the Tour de France green jersey on the rest day. He seems happy!


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