What's Cool In Road Cycling
Vendôme - France - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Ben Swift (GBR / Team Sky) pictured during 74th edition of Paris - Nice - stage 1 - Condé-sur-Vesgre to Vendôme - 198km - photo VK/PN/Cor Vos © 2016

EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

Will Ben Swift have a team next year? – TOP STORY in EUROTRASH Thursday. All is not well in China for TJ Sport. In other cycling news: More new riders at Bahrain-Merida, Cannondale-Drapac, Cycling Academy and Kuwait-Cartucho.es sign some old men. Race news from the European champs, 4 Jours de Dunkerque, Tour of the Alps, GP Denain and the Tour of Britain. Sky stay with Kask, Louis Vuitton buy Pinarello, Lotto Soudal’s new clothes and we go training with Fortuneo-Vital Concept. It’s all go!

TOP STORY: Will There be a TJ Sports Team?
Rumors at the moment are not looking good for the TJ Sport team. The Chinese replacement team for Lampre-Merida have not received a WorldTour license from the UCI yet, as it is said they need to do more paperwork before the cut-off date of December the 15th. TJ Sport asked for extra time to dot the i’s and cross the t’s. Since then the team have cancelled their December training camp.

Word from China is also not rosy: The Chinese government is said to be putting more control on sport investments abroad and the general feeling is that there is no budget for the team. There has also been talk of riders agents asking around other teams, just incase.

Does this all sound familiar? Yes, the case of the Fernando Alonso cycling project. The Formula 1 driver let a few people down 3 years ago when his big plans came to nothing. The Spaniard has not given up on the idea totally, in an interview with Sportyou, he commented that; “it’s currently in the refrigerator until it is the right moment. Right now, we are focused on Formula 1 and we have postponed the project a bit but we did not cancel it. It continues to exist, but for now it is frozen.”

Will the Chinese project go the same way?

Ben Swift must be a worried man:
Vendôme - France - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Ben Swift (GBR / Team Sky) pictured during 74th edition of Paris - Nice  - stage 1 - Condé-sur-Vesgre to Vendôme - 198km - photo VK/PN/Cor Vos © 2016

Franco Pellizotti Joins Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team
Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team announced another rider, Franco Pellizotti, an experienced cyclist that already assisted and rode with Vincenzo Nibali.

Franco Pellizotti, age 38 is an Italian professional cyclist. Pellizotti is known as a climbing specialist and he won many Stages at Grand Tours and other races in his long career. He was third overall in the 2009 Giro and he won the polka dot jersey in Paris as the best climber of Tour de France in 2009, as well as named the Most Combative Rider on Stages 9 and 17. Pellizotti has been in Pro Tour Teams since 2001 so he is an extremely experienced rider. In 2010 he was a team-mate of Vincenzo Nibali in Liquigas team. Together they achieved many excellent results and Pellizotti helped him on many Grand Tours and other races. The management of the BAHRAIN MERIDA Pro Cycling Team is convinced that they will achieve even greater results riding together again, as now they are more matured and more experienced.

After signing the agreement with Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team Pellizotti said: “I am really happy for more than one reason. I will race another season and above all with BAHRAIN MERIDA pro Cycling Team I return to the WorldTour, which means riding with top cyclists in the world, like Nibali. What makes me even more excited is the idea to be part of a new team, to share the enthusiasm of a new beginning with my co-riders and to feel everyone’s desire to achieve something good together. It is the same feeling I had in 2005 with Liquigas, where I also met Vincenzo, Gasparotto and many members of the current staff of BAHRAIN MERIDA as Miholjević, Chiesa, Štangelj, Slongo and others. I remember that we were a tight-knit group and it’s nice to work with them again. Regarding Nibali – we spent 5 years together in Liquigas and I saw him growing up. It’s amazing how now I can support him toward his goals, among which is Giro d’Italia, where he will be aiming for his third victory. I will be one of his men for the climbs and my aim is to help him as much as possible. I’m joining a strong team here, that I know very well, since I’m in the peloton for a very long time.”

Pellizotti and Nibali back together again:
Passo San Pelegrino - Italia - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - team Liquigas traint - Vincenzo Nibali, Franco Pellizotti, Ivan Basso  - foto Wessel van Keuk/Cor Vos ©2008

Tom Van Asbroeck completes Cannondale-Drapac roster for 2017
Team adds depth in classics, key support for Vanmarcke.

Tom Van Asbroeck will line up in argyle next year, rounding out the team’s classics squad and 2017 roster. The signing of Van Asbroeck bolsters the team’s depth in the northern classics as well as supplies a fleet finisher in other races.

With a background in motor racing and mountain biking, Van Asbroeck started racing bikes at the age of 17 and came up through the Belgian Topsport Vlaanderen program. He rode for Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator in 2012 and Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise in 2013 and 2014. His 13th place finish in Paris-Tours of 2014 got him a spot with Team LottoNL-Jumbo, where he made his WorldTour debut.

Calling cycling “the most fun job I can ever imagine,” he was happiest during the 2015 and 2016 spring classics. Last season, Van Asbroeck supported Vanmarcke’s quest for a Paris-Roubaix victory. Vanmarcke finished just off the podium at Roubaix and second at Gent-Wevelgem. The two hope to move up this season.

“A big reason for me to join Cannondale-Drapac was Sep of course. He asked me to join him and really wanted me there on the team, and he’s a really, really good friend,” Van Asbroeck said. “That was one of the big reasons why I wanted to join the team. Plus, I think it’s a really nice team. Everything looks cool, the kits and bikes are really nice. Everything fits my picture of professionalism.”

“Sep was really enthusiastic for me to come, and it’s always nice if someone wants you with him on the team. I know what I can do for Sep and what he can do for me in the sprints. We make a really good team, so that was a big part of my decision.”

Van Asbroeck is a multi-faceted rider, capable of supporting a leader or notching a result himself.

In 2014, he finished sixth at Gent-Wevelgem and seventh at Dwars door Vlaanderen. In the 2016 season, he finished fourth in the Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem, won a stage and the points classification in the Tour du Poitou Charentes and took the mountain classification in the Arctic Tour of Norway.

“The thing I wanted to build this season was a deeper cobbled classics team. That was sort of the number one focus of what I was trying to recruit for moving forward. By UCI statistics, we’re the smallest budget team in the WorldTour, so I needed to figure out where, and how, we can win races,” Slipstream Sports CEO Jonathan Vaughters said.

“That’s where Sep Vanmarcke came about, Tom Van Asbroeck and Taylor Phinney,” Vaughters added. “Vanmarcke is probably the fastest rider on the cobbles, flat out. He’s really come into his own since his previous time with us, and he’ll have a spirited team around him, with Taylor, Tom, Dylan van Baarle, Sebastian Langeveld and others. We have a lot to play off of this season in the classics. I’m excited to see what we can do.”

Tom Van Asbroeck following Sep Vanmarcke:
Roubaix - France - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Sep Vanmarcke (Belgium / Team LottoNL - Jumbo) - Tom Van Asbroeck (Belgium / Team LottoNL - Jumbo)  pictured during Paris - Roubaix Dion Kerckhoffs/Cor Vos © 2015

Jason Lowndes Signs for Cycling Academy
The Australian young sprinter Jason Lowndes and his meteoric rise from amateur to Pro Continental
Israeli team completes its international riders signing for its first year as a Pro Conti team by signing second Aussie.

Less than 2 years ago Jason Lowndes was an Amateur, a totally unknown rider from Australia, and a late bloomer who spent most of his days riding mountain bikes and even BMX.

About the same time, 2 oceans and 10,000 km apart, Cycling Academy, the first Israeli Pro team, was taking its first baby steps, just weeks away from its first ever race.

Fast forward to today, and the improbable scenario has become a reality: the Israeli team takes the Australian as their last foreign rider to complete its international roster for its first Pro Continental season. (The announcement of two more Israeli riders in the next few days will complete the 16-rider roster).

Lowndes was born in the gold mining town of Kalgoorlie (“surprisingly it’s not a ghost town – on the contrary!”), and later moved to Bendigo as a kid, which proved to be pivotal on his path to becoming a Professional Cyclist. In Australia, Bendigo is a town known as a mecca of cycling, located just a short 150 km away from Melbourne: “Cycling is not very popular in Australia, but luckily it is in Bendigo!” he says. Lowndes firmly believes that move played a key role in his decision to race: “For me, biking was just fun. But then I noticed the cyclists that pass my home on the way to the weekly race, so I got interested.”

“Who would have thought it would happen?” laughed the 21-year-old Australian while trying to summarize his two years of almost meteoric rise through the ranks. “I was sitting here at home in Bendigo after having a few good national races and thought to myself: I just love to travel, so why not give it a try? So I wrote a letter to a Canadian team to see if they might be interested in giving me a chance. And believe me, if they would have said “no” I wouldn’t have been surprised at all…”

That continental team from Quebec, Garneau-Quebecor, was willing to take the risk. From there, it was a (very) fast track affair, which the easy-going Australian openly admits has taken even him by surprise. From the start, he showed that he belonged at the teams level, amassing 9 wins and 8 podiums with his Canadian team. It was impressive enough to earn him a chance to ride for a much bigger team in 2016: Drapac Professional Cycling.

But Lowndes did not slow down there. In his first stage race in San Luis, he beat the World Champion Peter Sagan in a sprint — “One of my biggest moments” — and, he finished the season by taking 6th place in the U23 World Championship.

Jason Lowndes:
Goes - Netherlands - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme -  Lowndes Jason (Australia / Drapac)  pictured during the prologue (6,4 km) of the Ster ZLM Toer - GP Jan van Heeswijk 2016 in Goes, Netherlands - photo Carla Vos/Cor Vos © 2016

Old Men to Kuwait?
It has been reported by Spanish sportspaper AS that 35 year-old German, Stefan Schumacher has signed a one year contract with the Kuwait-Cartucho.es team and the strong rumor is that his ex-CCC Sprandi teammate, 45 year-old, Davide Rebellin will be joining him.

The Kuwait/Spanish Continental team has already signed Axel Costa (Massi-Kuwait), Andreas Keusser (Massi-Kuwait), José Manuel Gutiérrez (Rias Baixas) and Fernando Grijalba (MMR-Inteja). AS is convinced that an announcement on the signing of Rebellin will be made in the next few days.

The team Tweet:

UEC Road Champs in Denmark
It was announced on Wednesday that the 2017 UEC Road European Championships will be held in Herning, Denmark, from the 2nd to the 6the of August. The Championship rices for Junior, Under 23 and Elite (Men and Women) categories and will be broadcast live by Eurovision.

UEC President, David Lappartient said: “The Danish Cycling Federation and the City of Herning have convinced us that they can offer top quality European Championships in 2017 both for athletes and spectators. We are particularly enthusiastic about the idea of being able to share the official circuit with the public and amateur cyclists via a great event which they will also be part of on the same days. Herning’s experience as the number one «cycling-city» in Denmark for the hosting of major sporting events totally convinced us that this would be the ideal location to organize an important and prestigious event like the Road European Championships.”

Lappartient added: “As we are approaching a busy season of races, we would like to thank all the European National Federations for the great support they give to the UEC with the common objective of continuing to develop cycling in Europe in all countries and in all disciplines.”

Peter Sagan won the 2016 Euro champs:

Extra Day for Dunkirk
The five day 4 Jours de Dunkerque has now become the six day 4 days of Dunkerque. Thanks to the help of the Picardie Regional Council, the race organizers have announced the course for 2017, including the extra stage. The three departments of the Picardy region, Somme, Aisne and Oise are included in the itinerary from the 9th to the 14th of May 2017.

4 Jours de Dunkerque Stages:
Stage 1: Dunkirk – Iwuy (197 km)
Stage 2: Saint-Quentin – Saint-Quentin (171 km)
Stage 3: Beauvais-Amiens (152 km)
Stage 4: Marck-en-Calais – Le Portel (167 km)
Stage 5: Boeschepe – Cassel (184 km)
Stage 6: Coudekerque-Branche – Dunkirk (159 km)

Dunkerque Course:

4 Jours de Dunkerque 2016 Stage 1 Final Kilometers:

Giro del Trentino becomes “Tour of the Alps”
After passing the 40th edition banner, the Giro del Trentino changes the event’s naming under the aegis of Euregio Tirol-Trentino-Alto Adige. The 2017 edition will be held from 17th to 21st of April, under the same G.S. Alto Garda organization.

The dice is cast. After the 40th edition took place last April, the Giro del Trentino hands over to the “Tour of the Alps”, the new event’s naming under Euregio Tirol-Trentino-Alto Adige aegis. In Bozen, the three Euregio’s presidents Arno Kompatscher, Günther Platter and Ugo Rossi undersigned a memorandum of understanding to seal the new 2.HC stage race (same category as Giro del Trentino), scheduled from 17 to 21 April 2017 with five stages, under the same G.S. Alto Garda management. The race course will be unveiled in January.

The new Euregional event brings lot of meanings in and outside sport, going beyond borders. Throughout the last 40 years, Giro del Trentino gained a strong reputation as a key setup fixture towards the Giro d’Italia. “We’re extremely proud of the new project starting right now – G.S. Alto Garda President Giacomo Santini said – aiming to enhance our race and show the amazing territories where it takes place to the global audience even more than we already did over the last editions”.

The three Presidents Rossi, Kompatscher and Platter remarked the strong value within the “Tour of the Alps”. “We’re following up to the exciting 40-year history of Giro del Trentino with a new spirit. The Alps unite people sharing nature, history and culture as a common ground. The sport helps to go beyond the borders in name of a better lifestyle inspired by the sustainable mobility”.

With a common goal to achieve a successful project, Tirol Werbung, IDM Alto Adige and Trentino Marketing – the three operating units – will cooperate closely as all three territories are two-wheel friendly, no matter if MTB, race or e-bikes .

Under its iconic name, the newborn “Tour of the Alps” logotype mirrors the three Euregio areas’ colors and willfully recalls the look&feel of 2018 UCI Road World Championships in Innsbruck to convey an even stronger communicative concept.

Euregio’s presidents together with the representatives of Tirol Werbung, IDM Alto Adige and Trentino Marketing:

Slight Change to GP Denain 2017
The organizers of the Grand Prix de Denain have announced a small change to the course of the 59th Grand Prix de Denain. The 198 kilometer French race will still start and finish in Denain but, “the northern part of Valenciennes will be avoided (Saint-Amand-les-Eaux, Raismes, Bruay-sur-Scheldt) and the passage through the city of Hordain will be abandoned, following the refusal of the Mayor to collaborate,” the organizers stated.

In 2016, English rider Dan McLay of the French Fortuneo–Vital Concept team showed his speed in a fantastic sprint for the win.

McLay takes Denain:

Brother UK extend Tour of Britain partnership following success of 2016
Brother UK and SweetSpot Group are delighted to announce the extension of their partnership across The Tour of Britain, The Women’s Tour and The Tour Series following its success in 2016.

Brother UK will continue as the official results, printing and imaging partner for the Tour of Britain, The Women’s Tour and The Tour Series in a new multi-year partnership with SweetSpot Group, organizers of all three events.

The service and solutions provider, which is based in Greater Manchester, will continue their support of a mixture of multi-stage and city centre racing, encompassing both men and women’s elite cycling, through The Tour Series (May 2017), The Women’s Tour (7 – 11 June) and The Tour of Britain (3 – 10 September), keeping fans around the world up-to-date on the action via their @BrotherCycling social media handle.

Phil Jones MBE, Managing Director of Brother UK said “We were keen to tie something up longer term within our cycling portfolio supporting our ‘Brother4Results’ positioning and I’m delighted we could partner again with SweetSpot for a further 3 years, after a highly successful 2016 season. Together we make a great team and today’s announcement signals our commitment to support the sport over the coming years.”

Brother UK will continue to be the sponsor of the Fastest Lap competition within The Tour Series, presenting a trophy to the rider recording the fastest lap during the action packed events. Additionally Brother UK will again have naming rights to the Series’ Corporate Grand Prix support event, giving teams from Official Partners the chance to race on one of the same circuits as the professionals in a Pro-Am format.

In addition to imaging and printing facilities for the race organizers, Brother will continue their support of the mass participation Tour Ride sportives using its two dedicated neutral service vehicles, giving participants similar support to that experienced by professional teams.

Commenting on the extended partnership, Alastair Grant, Commercial Director of SweetSpot said; “2016 was our first year working with Brother UK and we were delighted with the results the partnership produced. We are thrilled that they have chosen to re-commit to Britain’s biggest cycling events, as a part of their wider sponsorship portfolio.”

“We are working closely with Brother UK on plans for 2017 and to grow the partnership for the benefit of fans following the Tour of Britain, Women’s Tour and Tour Series.”

The Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their door step.

Tour of Britain 2016 Stage 1 – Highlights:

Team Sky Extend KASK Partnership
Team Sky has extended its partnership with helmet provider KASK through to the end of the 2020 season.

KASK have provided the team with world class helmets since the team’s inception in 2010, with development work dating back even further, and both parties are delighted to announce a continuation of the successful relationship.

Carsten Jeppesen, Team Sky’s Head of Technical Operations, explained that it was an ‘easy decision’ to renew the partnership with KASK.

He said: “Having worked directly with KASK for the last eight years it was an easy decision to continue that collaboration. Our riders and technicians demand and expect the best in terms of protection, comfort, and performance, whatever they face in races and training. We need continued innovation and development from our helmet supplier to ensure we stay ahead of the pack in every way we can. That’s what we expect, and that’s what we get from KASK.”

In the team’s seven seasons KASK have provided six different models of helmet and there are new products in the pipeline for 2017 and beyond. Each model is developed in close collaboration with Team Sky’s performance team and is made available for consumers.

Vertigo – the very first performance helmet provided by KASK, worn in 2010 and ’11
Protone – a light, comfortable and high performance model that dissipates heat efficiently and has the lowest drag co-efficient of any ventilated helmet available
Infinity – the innovative Infinity is both highly aerodynamic and fully vented for cooling and comfort. The vents can easily be opened or closed on the move
Bambino Pro – the most aerodynamic model used in time trials
Bambino Pro Evo TT – the latest evolution of the time trial helmet was debuted in the stage 13 time trial of the 2016 Tour de France. It combines long-tail aero benefits with short-tail robustness
Mojito – the Mojito is one of the most versatile, comfortable and efficient road helmets on the market

KASK’s general manager Diego Zambon hailed the partnership as a big honor for the helmet manufacturer.

He said: “We are proud to announce that we are once again extending our winning partnership working closely with Team Sky. Team Sky entrusting the safety of their riders to us, as helmet supplier, is both a big honour and big responsibility, and one that we strive hard year on year to both match and exceed.”

“At KASK we always keep the pressure on our program of research and development to create new designs with opportunities for performance improvement. It’s a fantastic challenge to provide this service to an outfit of the calibre of Team Sky for another four years.”

Team Sky in the Vuelta TTT with KASK:

Louis Vuitton buy Pinarello!
LVMH-owner, L Catterton, will take a controlling stake in frame producer Pinarello, but Fausto Pinarello still has a large stake in the business, and remains as CEO. Pinarello plans to expand its presence globally and the company aims at opening new Pinarello concept stores in some capital cities of the world. Pinarello Holding counts €52 million revenues during fiscal year 2015/2016, 90% of which are realized outside Italy. Operating in more than 50 countries around the world. Pinarello has more than 50 employees and produces 30,000 bikes per year.

Fausto Pinarello said: “L Catterton’s unparalleled experience in building leading brands and deep understanding of the global consumer market make them the ideal partner for Pinarello. With L Catterton’s Pinarello will see new growth perspectives; we will not forget our roots and continue our path, creating innovative and high quality products.”

Chris Froome’s Pinarello:

Lotto Soudal 2017 Kit
The Lotto Soudal team have released their kit for the 2017 season. Not much of a change, still mostly red and white with black shorts. The writing on the shorts is round the leg and not down it, the biggest change is on the rear of the jersey which is quite plain with Lotto Soudal in a white block (see below).


First Training Camp for Fortuneo-Vital Concept 2017
Yes, the training camps have started, it doesn’t feel that long since the World championships. Most teams have had their first ‘meetings’ and so here is a look behind the scenes with Fortuneo-Vital Concept.

Take a look at our Instagram page for a live feed of #PeloPics, #DailyDistractions, and giveaways straight from your phone: https://www.instagram.com/pezcyclingnews

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