What's Cool In Road Cycling

EuroTrash Monday!

That’s the Vuelta a Espaсa all wrapped up and Juan Josй Cobo took the honours in Madrid. Ivan Basso won in Padania and the Tour of Britain started with a win for Mark Cavendish in Scotland. There is racing all over the place; Belgium, France and Canada…it’s all here on EuroTrash Monday!

”Top Story”
Vuelta a Espaсa 2011
So that’s the 2011 Vuelta a Espaсa over and of all the 10 Vuelta’s I’ve covered as an accredited journalist I think this has been the best for sporting excitement. The overall has changed hands many times and the final was in doubt even on the last day; and that came from the overall winner and his manager. You do have to wonder “what if” Sky had ridden a better team time trial on the first day and “what if” the team had backed Chris Froome after he rode a strong individual time trial and had the red jersey? Oh well maybe next year!

Stage 18 saw a sort of truce between the teams of the leading two riders: Geox and Sky. A group of 17 headed up the road early, Matteo Montiguti (Ag2r-La Mondiale) wanted to take as many KOM mountains points as he could, but Nico Sijmens (Cofidis) wanted to stop him for his team mate; David Moncoutie who is leading the classification. Also Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) was there to get points for the green jersey to take it back from Bauka Mollema (Rabobank). The 17 were whittled down to 11 on the run-in to the finish in Noja, Paulinho (RadioShack) tried on his own, but was caught and passed by Vandewalle (Quick-Step) and Gavazzi (Lampre). They fought out the sprint with the Italian taking it. Rodriguez recovered the points jersey and all the other classifications stayed the same.

Vuelta Stage 18 Result:
1. Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Lampre-ISD in 4:24:42
2. Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Quick-Step
3. Alexandre Geniez (Fra) Skil-Shimano at 0:10
4. Nico Sijmens (Bel) Cofidis
5. Matteo Montaguti (Ita) Ag2r-La Mondiale
6. Volodymir Gustov (Ukr) Saxo Bank-Sungard
7. Juan Josй Oroz Ugalde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
8. Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha
9. Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Astana
10. Francis De Greef (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 0:15.

Overall After Stage 18:
1. Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC in 74:04:05
2. Christopher Froome (GB) Sky at 0:13
3. Bradley Wiggins (GB) Sky at 1:41
4. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 2:05
5. Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC 0:03:48
6. Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard-Trek at 4:13
7. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 4:31
8. Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 4:45
9. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha Team 0:05:20
10. Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi at 5:33.

You can see stage 18 part 1 here and stage 18 part 2 here on Spanish TV station tdp.

Stage 19 was the first time La Vuelta had visited the Basque Country for 33 years due the threat of terrorism, but since ETA had called a cease-fire a visit was always on the cards to this hot bed of cycle sport. The stage to Bilbao also gave Chris Froome (Sky) a chance to attack race leader Juan Josй Cobo (Geox-TMC) on the final circuit, which topped the Alto de Vivero two times. Marzio Bruseghin (Movistar), Alexsandr Dyanchenko (Astana) and the two Basque riders from Euskaltel-Euskadi; Gorka Verdugo and stage winner Igor Anton rode off early to be received by the crazy fans. Anton attacked the others through the crowd mass to take the stage from Bruseghin by 41 seconds for his “dream” win in his home land. The battle between Froome and Cobo commenced on the last climb of the Vivero, Wiggins rode tempo on the front until the inevitable attack came from Froome. Cobo covered it and it was back to status quo.

Vuelta Stage 19 Result:
1. Igor Anton Hernandez (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi in 3:53:34
2. Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Movistar at 0:41
3. Dominik Nerz (Ger) Liquigas-Cannondale at 1:30
4. Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (Spa) RadioShack
5. Chris Anker Sцrensen (Den) Saxo Bank-Sungard at 1:31
6. David De La Fuente Rasilla (Spa) Geox-TMC at 1:33
7. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Leopard-Trek
8. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
9. Eros Capecchi (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
10. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank.

Overall After Stage 19:
1. Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC in 77:59:12
2. Christopher Froome (GB) Sky at 0:13
3. Bradley Wiggins (GB) Sky at 1:41
4. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 2:03
5. Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC at 3:48
6. Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard-Trek at 4:13
7. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 4:31
8. Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 4:45
9. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha at 5:20
10. Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi at 5:33.

You can see stage 19 part 1 here and stage 19 part 2 here on Spanish TV station tdp.

Stage 20 had a couple of chances for Froome to make time on Cobo as there were two intermediate sprints, one of which had been moved to later in the stage. Froome had obviously been told about the later sprint, but made the mistake of going for the 20K to go banner by mistake and then when the real sprint came there were two away and he didn’t get the second anyway. The stage came down to a bunch sprint, but as most of the top sprinters had left the race the win went to Daniele Bennati from Leopard-Trek. The overall remained the same going into the last stage to Madrid.

Vuelta Stage 20 Result:
1. Daniele Bennati (Ita) Leopard-Trek
2. Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana
3. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
4. Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Garmin-Cervelo
5. Koen De Kort (Ned) Skil-Shimano
6. Manuele Mori (Ita) Lampre-ISD
7. Davide Malacarne (Ita) Quick-Step
8. Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Quick-Step
9. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank
10. Eros Capecchi (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale.

Overall After Stage 20:
1. Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC in 82:38:32
2. Christopher Froome (GB) Sky at 0:13
3. Bradley Wiggins (GB) Sky at 1:39
4. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 2:03
5. Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC at 3:48
6. Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard-Trek at 4:13
7. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 4:31
8. Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 4:45
9. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha at 5:20
10. Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi at 5:33.

You can see stage 20 part 1 here and stage 20 part 2 here on Spanish TV station tdp.

There were a lot of tired legs in the Final Stage 21 and it was a bit of a procession, as these things can be. There were a few breaks on the finishing circuit around the centre of Madrid, but in the end it came down to a sprint. After most of the work had been done by the Lampre and Leopard teams for Petacchi and Bennati, that man Peter Sagan came past both of them for his third Vuelta stage win. Happy smiles all round for Juan Josй Cobo and his Geox-TMC team. Rabobank were also pleased as Bauka Mollema finished ahead of Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) for the points jersey. King of the Mountains was secure for David Moncoutie (Cofidis) and the combination prize also went to Cobo. Sky can’t be too disappointed with 2nd and 3rd places overall. Top team was Geox-TCM.

Vuelta Stage 21 Result:
1. Peter Sagan (Svk) Liquigas-Cannondale in 2:20:59
2. Daniele Bennati (Ita) Leopard-Trek
3. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-ISD
4. John Degenkolb (Ger) HTC-Highroad
5. Nikolas Maes (Bel) Quick-Step
6. Pim Ligthart (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM
7. Christopher Sutton (Aus) Sky Procycling
8. Koen De Kort (Ned) Skil – Shimano
9. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team
10. Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Omega Pharma-Lotto.

Vuelta a Espaсa Final Overall Result:
1. Juan Jose Cobo Acebo (Spa) Geox-TMC in 84:59:31
2. Christopher Froome (GB) Sky at 0:13
3. Bradley Wiggins (GB) Sky at 1:39
4. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 2:03
5. Denis Menchov (Rus) Geox-TMC at 3:48
6. Maxime Monfort (Bel) Leopard-Trek at 4:13
7. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:04:31
8. Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 4:45
9. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha at 5:20
10. Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi at 5:33
11. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Leopard-Trek at 5:50
12. Chris Anker Sцrensen (Den) Saxo Bank-Sungard at 7:04
13. Daniel Martin (Irl) Team Garmin-Cervelo at 7:22
14. Marzio Bruseghin (Ita) Movistar at 8:52
15. Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Vacansoleil-DCM at 8:57
16. Nicolas Roche (Irl) Ag2r-La Mondiale at 10:25
17. Wout Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM at 11:42
18. Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Astana at 13:27
19. Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha at 15:07
20. Carlos Sastre Candil (Spa) Geox-TMC at 20:08.

You can see all of stage 21 here on Spanish TV station tdp.

Giro di Padania 2011
After Sacha Modolo (Colnago-CSF) won the first stage beating Elia Viviani (Liquigas-Cannondale) and then Viviani beating Modolo for the second stage, it was Modolo’s turn to win Stage 3 after 198 or 225 kilometres to Salsomaggiore Terme to take the overall again. The distance was changed to avoid more protesters and also the race was not allowed to enter the town of Piacenza by the Mayor. Liquigas were in control, but Modolo came out top in the end.

Padania Stage 3 Result:
1. Sacha Modolo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox in 4:52:42
2. Elia Viviani (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
3. Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Acqua & Sapone
4. Fabio Taborre (Ita) Acqua & Sapone
5. Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre-ISD
6. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox
7. Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli
8. Ariel Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) D’Angelo & Antenucci-Nippo
9. Filippo Baggio (Ita) De Rosa-Ceramica Flaminia
10. Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Landbouwkrediet.

Overall After Stage 3:
1. Sacha Modolo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox in 13:35:54
2. Elia Viviani (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale at 0:04
3. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 0:22
4. Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Landbouwkrediet at 0:26
5. Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre-ISD
6. Reinier Honig (Ltu) Landbouwkrediet
7. Davy Commeyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
8. Aristide Ratti (Ita) WIT
9. Dominik Hrinkow (Aut) Vorarlberg
10. Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet.

1. Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
2. Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Farnese Neri-Vini Sottoli at 0:52
3. Francesco Masciarelli (Ita) Astana at 1:08
4. Fortunato Baliani (Ita) D’Angelo & Antenucci at 1:17
5. Davide Rebellin (Ita) Miche-Guerciotti at 1:24
6. Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni Giocattoli at 1:32
7. Simone Stortoni (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:34
8. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:53
9. Marek Rutkiewicz (Pol) Poland at 2:57
10. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli.

Overall After Stage 4:
1. Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
2. Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli at 0:52
3. Francesco Masciarelli (Ita) Astana at 1:08
4. Fortunato Baliani (Ita) D’Angelo & Antenucci-Nippo at 1:17
5. Davide Rebellin (Ita) Miche-Guerciotti at 1:24
6. Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni Giocattoli C.I.P.I at 1:32
7. Simone Stortoni (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:34
8. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:53
9. Marek Rutkiewicz (Pol) Poland at 2:57
10. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli C.I.P.I at 3:08.

Stage 5 was another sprint finish, but neither Modolo nor Viviani won this one. Andrea Guardini (Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli) got the better of Viviani and Danilo Napolitano (Aqua & Sapone) in 3rd. Ivan Basso finished comfortably in the bunch to win overall.

Padania Stage 5 Result:
1. Andrea Guardini (Ita) Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli in 4:00:40
2. Elia Viviani (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
3. Danilo Napolitano (Ita) Acqua & Sapone
4. Ariel Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) D’Angelo & Antenucci-Nippo
5. Filippo Baggio (Ita) De Rosa-Ceramica Flaminia
6. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox
7. Angelo Furlan (Ita) Christina Watches-Onfone
8. Davy Commeyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
9. Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre-ISD
10. Luka Mezgec (Slo) Slovenia

Padania Final Overall
1. Ivan Basso (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale in 22:13:28
2. Giovanni Visconti (Ita) Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli at 0:52
3. Francesco Masciarelli (Ita) Astana at 1:08
4. Fortunato Baliani (Ita) D’Angelo & Antenucci-Nippo at 1:17
5. Davide Rebellin (Ita) Miche-Guerciotti at 1:24
6. Emanuele Sella (Ita) Androni Giocattoli C.I.P.I at 1:32
7. Simone Stortoni (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:34
8. Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:53
9. Marek Rutkiewicz (Pol) Poland at 2:57
10. Riccardo Chiarini (Ita) Androni Giocattoli C.I.P.I at 3:08.

Paris-Bruxelles 2011
After the early break-away was caught with around 40 kilometres to go, a large group rode off the front with danger-man Andre Greipel (Omega Pharma-Lotto) amongst it. Katusha were having none of it and pulled them back, this set up the BMC lead-out train for Alexander Kristoff. First to jump (too early) was Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Saxo Bank-Sungard) who had Denis Galimzyanoz (Katusha) on his wheel, the Russian fast man came round Haedo to hold everyone off to the line.

Paris-Brussels Result:
1. Denis Galimzyanov (Rus) Katusha in 4:51:35
2. Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) FdJ
3. Anthony Ravard (Fra) Ag2r-La Mondiale
4. Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Veranda’s Willems-Accent
5. Takashi Miyazawa (Jpn) Farnese Vini-Neri Sottoli
6. Borut Bozic (Slo) Vacansoleil-DCM
7. Alexander Kristoff (Nor) BMC
8. Daniele Colli (Ita) Geox-TMC
9. Michael Van Staeyen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator
10. Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Saur-Sojasun.

GP de Fourmies/La Voix du Nord 2011
Most of the riders who rode Saturday’s Paris-Brussels also lined up in the north of France for the GP de Fourmies. This semi-classic also came down to a sprint finish and BMC’s Alexander Kristoff nearly pulled it off, but fast Frenchman Guillaume Blot of the Bretagne-Schuller team out sprinted many ProTour riders for probably his best win.

GP de Fourmies Result:
1. Guillaume Blot (Fra) Bretagne-Schuller in 4:49:48
2. Alexander Kristoff (Nor) BMC
3. Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Veranda’s Willems-Accent
4. Adrien Petit (Fra) Cofidis
5. Mathieu Drujon (Fra) Big Mat-Auber 93
6. Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) FdJ
7. Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil-DCM
8. Robbie Mcewen (Aus) RadioShack
9. Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Saur-Sojasun
10. Kenny De Haes (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto.

GP Cycliste de Quйbec 2011
That man Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) showed again why he is now the leader of the UCI World Rankings. He beat Robert Gesink (Rabobank) after 201 kilometres of hard racing. Gilbert split the race on the climb of the Cфte de la Montagne and was joined by Levi Leipheimer (RadioShack), Rigoberto Uran (Sky), Fabian Wegmann (Leopard-Trek), Simone Ponzi (Liquigas-Cannondale), Simon Clarke (Astana), Gerald Ciolek (Quick-Step) and Bjorn Leukemnas & Marco Marcato (Vacansoleil-DCM). The last time up the climb, Gesink attacked and was chased and caught by Rigoberto Uran (Sky) and Gilbert, then it was Gilbert’s turn again to gap the others. Gesink launched himself after the fast Belgian, but it was just too late (by a bike length) and Gilbert took the honours.

GP Quйbec Result:
1. Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto in 5:03:08
2. Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank
3. Rigoberto Uran Uran (Col) Sky at 0:09
4. Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Leopard-Trek at 0:14
5. Levi Leipheimer (USA) RadioShack at 0:15
6. Bjцrn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM at 0:23
7. Simone Ponzi (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale
8. Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM at 0:25
9. Gerald Ciolek (Ger) Quick-Step at 0:30
10. Simon Clarke (Aus) Astana at 0:47.

GP Cyclist de Montrйal 2011
Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) nearly did the double in Canada at the weekend, but just missed out to Movistar’s Rui Costa who made a late attack on the rise of Mont Royal to the finish in Montrйal. Gilbert put in a strong chase, catching Stefan Denfil (Leopard-Trek from the last minute beak, but was just 2 seconds short of Pierrick Fedrigo (FdJ) and the winning Costa. Earlier in the day there had been a four man break that was then replaced by a much larger group, but it all came down to the last kilometres.

GP Cyclist de Montrйal Result:
1. Rui Alberto Faria Costa (Por) Movistar in 5:20:16
2. Pierrick Fedrigo (Fra) FdJ
3. Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 0:02
4. Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
5. Stefan Denifl (Aut) Leopard-Trek
6. Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre-ISD
7. Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro
8. Arthur Vichot (Fra) FdJ
9. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) Ag2r-La Mondiale
10. Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Leopard-Trek.

Tour of Britain 2011
Stage 1 of 170 kilometres in the Scottish borders from Peebles to Dumfries was won by Mark Cavendish (HTC-Highroad) to also take the overall leaders jersey. Mark Renshaw (as usual) was his lead-out man; he was fast enough to be second in front of Rabobank’s Theo Bos. Eight more stages with a split final stage in London next Sunday that could settle the overall over a 10 kilometre individual time trial.

ToB Stage 1 and Overall
1. Mark Cavendish (GB) HTC-Highroad in 4:41:06
2. Mark Renshaw (Aus) HTC-Highroad
3. Theo Bos (Ned) Rabobank
4. Barry Markus (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM
5. Geraint Thomas (GB) Sky Procycling
6. Robert Fцrster (Ger) UnitedHealthcare
7. Ben Swift (GB) Sky
8. Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank
9. Roger Hammond (GB) Garmin-Cervelo
10. Ian Wilkinson (GB) Endura Racing.

Eric Knight and CompuTrain​er’s 10% Guarantee 2011
Press Release: Dr. Eric Knight – “10%??!! Last year my best average in a 1/2 Ironman bike leg was 19+mph. I got my Computrainer last August on your summer sale. This year in my first race, the Florida 70.3, I averaged 23.4mph over the 56 miles. So, your 10% increase is low…..way low.”

Eric additionally wrote: “Your great product plus great coaching by Rick Kattouf = ZOOM…. Also, I rode ALL winter. I’m in WI so I’ve never been able to train like this before…..3am, 4am, during a blizzard with 22″ of snow etc. The best was flying past people on their new $12k++ electronic bikes in FL. The $1700 that I paid for my Computrainer is absolutely the greatest bang for the buck that I’ve ever found. Did I mention that I averaged over 19mph on the Escape from Alcatraz course this year? Last year, 16.1mph…..and on and on…. And I should mention that I’m turning 52 next month. One more addition to brag about. I got invited in compete in the 5150 US Triathlon Championships having come in in 11th place (age group) in Florida. My run was terrible due to an injury but I was in such good shape after the bike, I only dropped back to 11th. I came off the bike in 3rd place.”

In my previous e-mails I have been promoting the fact that we guarantee a 10% improvement in 5 months to your bike power (if you use the CompuTrainer regularly) or you get a full refund**

So when I got an e-mail from age group Ironman triathlete, Rad Hart-George, telling me that the CompuTrainer helped him to improve by 27% in 6 months, well to be quite frank, I was astounded.

I just had to hear his story so I gave him a call and we spent 20 minutes chatting about how he was able to achieve such figures. You can listen to the whole interview by clicking here.

Tempo Intervals: Crying for my mommy in the last 10 seconds
With IMLP 2011 a fond memory, it’s time to enjoy a return of the sufferfest. We’ve moved the CompuTrainer into a deluxe suite in the garage, where we have a TV, cable, and climate control. Lap of luxury, people! Read More . . .

One CompuTrainer at $1549 ($100 savings)
+ 1 Free Real Course Video
OR
One CompuTrainer at $1649
+ 3 Free Real Course Videos

Take advantage of our Summer Sale and spend the Winter training like the Pros. CompuTrainer is Guaranteed to increase your bike speed by 10%.

Sale Runs from August 1, 2011 Thru September 18, 2011

0% interest Deferred Payment Plan
Available on Phone Orders ONLY
$395.00 down for U.S. Orders + accessories ($450.00 down for Canada)
Balance divided into 12 equal monthly payments.
1-800-522-3610

SO FAR IN 2011, COMPUTRAINER SPONSORED PRO ATHLETES HAVE AMASSED:
66 – 1ST PLACES,
32 – 2ND PLACES
27 – 3RD PLACES!

1989 Horseshoe Pass Hill Climber Takes on Etape Cymru Climb Again
Press Release: 22 years ago, Scott O’Brien raced up the Horseshoe Pass in a Wrexham RC hill climb, coming second only to then teammate Chris Boardman. Next month, he’ll ride the Horseshoe Pass again as part of the closed-road 100-mile Etape Cymru sportive, held on Sunday 9th October.

O’Brien, racing for the Manchester Wheelers, finished the hill climb in 09.25 behind Boardman’s 09.07 time. “The Wrexham RC hill climb on the Horseshoe in 1989 was one of the events I entered as preparation for the National Hill Climb later that year,” explained O’Brien. Boardman went on to win the National Hill Climb Championships in 1989.

He continued: “I was nervous about this particular climb because it is hard to judge your effort. Some shorter, steeper hill climbs can be ridden like a flat out sprint, but the Horseshoe is more of a time trial.”

O’Brien, now 41, was a multiple national champion and joined Chris Boardman, Paul Curran and Peter Longbottom to win the British National Track Team Time Trial in 1991. O’Brien also won the Team Pursuit with Boardman in his career.

As a local lad, O’Brien’s participation in the closed-road Etape Cymru is likely to bring back some memories from his racing days. “I have ridden up the Horseshoe Pass countless times in training as a youngster,” added O’Brien.

“I spent many a Wednesday in the summer holidays in the 80s riding to Llangollen, swimming in the river, then riding home (a 90 miles round trip) before going to ride the Kirby Track league in the evening!

“I am looking forward (if not a bit apprehensive) to be riding on the roads I last trained on 18 years ago. I have started doing longer rides and have ventured to the lower foothills of Wales recently, but nowhere near the level of the Horseshoe or the other climbs on the route.”

Before the event, riders can take on the Horseshoe Pass Challenge and submit their times to the www.etape-cymru.co.uk website. They won’t be able to beat Scott O’Brien’s time of 09.25, however, because that started further down the course than the Etape Cymru’s challenge. But riders can have a go at taking on Geraint Thomas MBE’s time of 14.22 or GB U23 rider Sam Harrison’s 14.27.

Entries for the Etape Cymru 100-mile closed-road sportive close on Friday 16th September.

Entries cost Ј65, which includes a closed road environment, event goodie bag, event gilet, and a free British Cycling Ride membership worth Ј24. Existing British Cycling members pay a discounted entry fee of Ј53.

Vengeance in Vegas! The Cross Clash of the Century
Press Release: On Wednesday – September 14th at Interbike, Cross Vegas will be the first of many match-ups between our own Rapha Focus riders and that of their sworn nemesis the Cannondale CX World Racing Squad. It is amazing to look at how evenly they are matched. There are enough riders to go around with Chris Jones set up to take down C. Huele and Zach ready to step up and take his place with the big boys (he’s 20 currently) and get J. Driscoll in his sights. We may also have something coming at you in the Women’s department as well. Do not tell those guys, we want to keep them guessing…

However, there is one of these match-ups that stands out at the moment. One match-up to end all match-ups… “there can be only one” as the Highlander is fond of saying.

When Jeremy Powers raced with the Cannondale CX World Team he called Tim Johnson his teammate. Under the tutelage of this Grandmaster Mr. Powers studied the art of Cyclocross. Then, he went to Europe and studied some more. It is safe to say, from looking back at the results from the past few years, that he has too – Mastered the Art.


Any comments drop me a line, email address: [email protected] or Twitter. And there is the PezCyclingNews Facebook Fan Page.

Like PEZ? Why not subscribe to our weekly newsletter to receive updates and reminders on what's cool in road cycling?

Comments are closed.