What's Cool In Road Cycling

EuroTrash Monday!

It’s EuroTrash Monday so we catch up on the Cyclo-cross action from the weekend, plus an announcement from the Giro d’Italia with more social media! My “Top Story” picks up on some scary stuff for drug taking footballers and their children. Team and rider news, Revolution Track meeting and a couple of Press Releases. We finish with some Jacques Anquetil retro…but you can start with coffee and some video.

Giro 2012: The Fight For Pink Just Got Personal
Why just be a fan, when you can be the fan? That’s the question the organisers of the Giro d’Italia are asking today with their latest foray into the world of social media.

After connecting with fans at the previous edition of the race through Twitter, the Giro staged an online vote in the autumn that allowed fans to select the route of what will be the toughest stage of the 2012 race. Not to be outdone, they then completely modernised (the inside of) the iconic pink leaders jersey with another vote that saw fans’ Twitter comments selected to be printed on the inside of every maglia rosa for next year. Now, via the Giro Facebook page, comes another initiative which will see one fan become the face of the race in 2012. Now every person who loves The Italian Race has the chance to, “Be The Next Fighter”.

Starting today and continuing through until November 29th, anyone can post their profile picture on the Corsa Rosa’s official Facebook page from where the top ten will be selected by representatives of the McCann-Eriksson advertising agency, who are taking care of the Giro publicity campaign.
Between December 2 and 5, fans will be able to vote for their top three from the group selected from all entrants and once they have been selected, there will be a photo shoot of the three profiles ahead of a final selection on Thursday, December 15: The day when the 2012 Giro Pink Fighter will be chosen.

if you don’t already have a Facebook page or are not yet a Fan of the Corsa Rosa , you have a bit of time to get that sorted, and make sure you have access to yet another fan-centred competition from the bike race that we here at Pez consider, the coolest one in the world.

Follow all the news about becoming the Giro Pink Fighter or on the upcoming events for the 2012 race, check out the Giro at their official @giroditalia Twitter account where you can be sure that Luca will keep you informed of everything that is going on.

Roll on May 2012!

“Top Story”

Is it Worth It?
After EuroTrash Monday’s nice story I’m back to drugs in sport and not a very nice side of it! I saw this report in the French newspaper Le Monde, it explains that the football (soccer) players in the Algerian national team that competed in the ’82 and ’86 World Cup have given birth to a higher than average amount of disabled children. Here is the article translated from the original French:

The case could be big. Several Algerian footballers who participated in the World Cups of 1982 and 1986 publicly link the drugs used during training and the disability of their children.

“We decided to discuss the matter publicly when we discovered that there were no fewer than eight former internationals whose children were disabled,” was declared on Wednesday, November 16, by the former defender Mohamed Chaib, father of three daughters with disabilities. “We have serious doubts about the effects of drugs that we consumed during the training sessions. We just want the truth,” continued Mohamed Chaib.

Djamel Menad, one of the “Desert Foxes” who participated in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, in turn gave birth to a girl suffering from Agenesis of the corpus callosum (ACC), which results mainly in muscle weakness and seizures. “Since I discovered that I was not alone, I began to ask questions,” he said. For the former striker of the Algerian team, the fact that several players of the same generation had children with disabilities is not a “coincidence”.

The former midfielder Kaci Mohamed Said, the father of a disabled daughter, 26, meanwhile has demanded an investigation. “I’m not saying that we were laboratory mice of Russian doctors and that we were given drugs without our knowledge. But doubts persist until an investigation has been opened for the truth to be seen” said the former international.

The hypothesis put forward by the former players, however, is refuted by the former captain of the Algerian team in the World Cup 1982 in Spain, Ali Fergani . For him, “the number of players who are parents of disabled children is minimal compared to the total number of players selected” between 1980 and 1990. Ali Fergani also denies the presence of Russians in the medical team selection. “All the doctors were Algerian and we take no medications, except for vitamin C”.

The coach of the Algeria team in the World Cup in Mexico, Rabah Saadane, talks in the same way. “When I ran the selection, from 1984 to 1986, there were no European doctors with us,” he told the Algerian press. The former coach said, however, between 1981 and 1988, there was a coach, Evegueni Rogov and a Russian physiotherapist. A coach from the former Yugoslavia, Zdravgo Rajkov, also led the team in 1980. The Algerian authorities have so far not commented on the accusations.

My points are; first, that you could be given something without your knowledge and second that you would be tempted use drugs that might affect your un-born children! Is it worth it?

Since I read that article, Oscar Pereiro (2006 Tour de France winner) has been outspoken about the difference between what people think of doping in football and cycling. He appeared on a Spanish TV Sports programme and named names of football stars who had doped; amongst others the French star Zinedine Zidane who admitted to having blood transfusions in Switzerland to regenerate his body. His other point was about “Operation Puerto” of which we have never heard anything of the other sports, including football (soccer) and tennis, plus the case of athlete Marta Dominguez in “Operation Galgo”. His hope is that Dr. Fuentes will; “stand up and say everything he knows. A lot of those bags found in the raids had ‘European championship’ written on them. There isn’t a European championship in cycling. It’s all been an embarrassment.”

Superprestige Asper-Gavere 2011
After Saturday’s win in Hasselt, Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Revor) was on a roll and attacked the field after a blistering pull from Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet) on the seventh lap. He dropped Nys, Zdenek Stybar (Quick-Step), Bart Aernouts (Rabobank-Giant) his team-mate Klaas Vantornout and the Telenet-Fidea duo; Bart Wellens and Tom Meeusen. Stybar tried to chase with some help from Nys, but they could not catch Pauwels, then at the end Meeusen jumped Stybar for second.

With this result Stybar moved up to share first place in the Superprestige rankings with Sven Nys, both riders holding 50 points. Pauwels is right behind the leading duo with 45 points. “It’s always nice to be at the head of the classification,” concluded Zdenek.

Superprestige Asper-Gavere Result:
1. Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Revor in 1:02:05
2. Tom Meeusen (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:32
3. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step
4. Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank-Giant
5. Sven Nys (Bel) Landbouwkrediet at 0:36
6. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Revor at 0:38
7. Bart Wellens (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:40
8. Radomir Simunek (Cze) BKCP-Powerplus at 0:51
9. Joeri Adams (Bel) Telenet-Fidea
10. Niels Wubben (Ned) Rabobank-Giant at 1:11.

Here is the link to VT4 for the video and interviews!

GVA Trofee – GP Hasselt 2011
After a battle Royal between the top six men in the GP Hasselt on Saturday, the race came down to a sprint for the win and Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Revor) edged over the line half a wheel in front of World champion; Zdenek Stybar (Quick-Step). As usual Stybar looked the strongest, but when riding on sand he was not the best and on some laps had to run. The race was a series of attacks and chases with no one able break away due the technical and narrow course. Into the last bend and Pauwels lead out and Stybar couldn’t get past him, the others finished just behind.

“I’m very happy with this second place, even if naturally it leaves a bitter taste in my mouth” Stybar told the Quick-Step web-site. “It’s never nice to lose in the sprint. However today Pauwels was very strong and he deserved this victory. It was a fast and fun cross even though along the route there were no stretches where you could really push things to try and make a difference. Now Pauwels has a good advantage in the rankings for the GVA- Trofee, but the season still has a long way to go and anything can happen.”

GVA Trofee – GP Hasselt Result:
1. Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Revor in 59:39
2. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step
3. Sven Nys (Bel) Landbouwkrediet at 0:01
4. Tom Meeusen (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:10
5. Dieter Vanthourenhout (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus at 0:28
6. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Revor at 0:34
7. Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank-Giant
8. Mariusz Gil (Pol) Baboco-Revor at 0:43
9. Bart Wellens (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:55
10. Vincent Baestaens (Bel) Landbouwkrediet at 1:00.

Alex Rasmussen cleared by Danes
Alex Rasmussen admits he made mistakes with his “whereabouts” for out of competition doping controls and had missed three in an eighteen month period. It now appears that he was not the only one who made a mistake! It appears that the UCI took 10 weeks to inform Rasmussen of the violation, when he should have been told within 14 days. According to the Danish Olympic Committee the case has to be “dismissed because his third violation of the whereabouts rules was notified too late and thus there is no longer a case.” Rasmussen was suspended and then sacked by his then team; HTC-Highroad and the Garmin team, who he was to ride for in 2012, annulled his contract, but is listed as a team Garmin-Cervelo member. The UCI may contest the decision.

Here is Alex winning the TD Bank Bike Race in Philadelphia on uRide.tv.

Andy Schleck to be Suspended!
Luxembourger and RadioShack-Nissan-Trek rider for 2012; Andy Schleck will have to pay a 350Ђ speeding fine and might also receive a driving ban for driving at 101 kilometres per hour near his home. My first thought was that he probably was not going downhill at the time! Whether or not he was driving one of his new sponsor’s products is not known.

This is a documentary about Andy Schleck’s preparations for the Tour de France 2011 by Niels Christian Jung.

Lloyd to Lampre-ISD
Likeable Australian rider Matthew Lloyd will be making a come-back to top line Professional cycling with the Italian Lampre-ISD team next year and the year after. Lloyd won the KOM of the 2010 Giro d’Italia as well as a stage win when he was riding for Omega Pharma-Lotto before they let him go before the end of the season for reason that have never really been explained. Lloyd is still only 28 years old and the ex-National champion still has a great future before him.

“Lloyd is an athlete with a top quality potential, he could be an important element in the roster since he’ll be useful in supporting the team’s captain in the Grand Tours and he’ll be also able to try to go in search of personal satisfactions in the toughest races”, general manager Saronni explained.

Technical director Damiani added: “I know well Matthew, we had a common experience in Belgium, and I’m happy to be together again. Lloyd is well motivated in giving the best and he’s happy to be in a team he has always appreciated”.

Here is a lucky Matthew with a couple of podium girls!

Sky Team for TDU
Sky are sending a strong team to Australia for the 2012 Tour Down Under starting in January with Edvald Boasson Hagen at its head with 2002 winner Michael Rogers amongst them.

Sky Team for TDU
Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor),
Geraint Thomas (GB),
Christopher Sutton (Aus),
Alex Dowsett (GB),
Michael Rogers (Aus),
Danny Pate (USA),
Mathew Hayman (Aus).

Sylvain Chavanel’s Back
On Wednesday, November 16th Sylvain Chavanel was operated using a nucleotomy technique to remove a herniated disk at the L5 S1 level. Professor Jean Destandau performed the successful operation in Bordeaux. “It’s already been a while that I’ve been suffering with this problem, which bothered me both on my bike and in my daily life,” explained Chavanel to the Quick-Step web-site. “The team medical staff and I first agreed to try some conservative therapies which didn’t solve the problem. At that point I needed the operation. Now I’ll have to observe a period of rest. The goal is to get back on a bike in a few weeks.”

Here is Chavanel winning stage 19 of the 2008 Tour de France.

Sбnchez has Hip Operation
Olympic champion; Samuel Sбnchez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) has under gone surgery on his right hip. In a Euskaltel-Euskadi team statement; the operation was for to remove some calcified lesions in deep soft tissue under a local anesthetic. The operation took place in the Tour de France King of the Mountains home land of Asturias and he is expected to be back in training soon.

Gold medal for Samu Sбnchez!

Mosquera to get 2 Year Ban?
It’s been over a year since Ezequiel Mosquera was found positive in a drug test at the Vuelta a Espaсa for Hydroxyethyl Starch. He had signed a contract with Dutch team Vacansoleil-DCM for 2011, but has never raced for the team due to waiting for a decision. Now it’s looking like he will receive a two year ban as his case is similar to the case of Oscar Sevilla who recently received a two year ban from the Spanish Cycling Federation. This is all conjecture at this moment but if it turns out that way then the Vacansoleil-DCM team will terminate his contract. Mosquera has professed his innocence throughout.

Schumacher to Christina Watches
Stefan Schumacher is moving from the Miche team to the team of Christina Watches for the 2012 season. Schumacher was banned for two years in 2008 when he was riding for Gerolsteiner when he tested positive for EPO at the Tour de France and the Olympic Games. He has had a questionable past with irregular blood values and a positive test in 2005 that was later quashed.

Cavendish Storms to Scratch Race Victory on Return to Revolution
Press Release: A packed house at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester witnessed Mark Cavendish’s return to the track for the first time since the 2009 World Championships. The sold-out Revolution 34 had an electric atmosphere, with Team UK Youth flourishing and leaping to a commanding lead in the Revolution Championship on the night.

This Revolution featured one of the strongest endurance line up in recent times. The opening event of the night saw Steven Burke of Team UK Youth pull out an impressive win in the Motor Paced Scratch Endurance Race.

Rapha Condor Sharp’s Ed Clancy and Andrew Tennant were victorious in the 1km Madison Time Trial, with the team also taking the spoils in the Team Elimination race.

Team Sky’s Peter Kennaugh won the intriguing Australian Pursuit. But it was the Scratch Race which really got the crowd going; early breaks by Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas and Alex Dowsett looked promising, but World Champion Mark Cavendish positioned himself perfectly to execute a win from the front.

In a poignant moment at the National Cycling Centre, the historic career of Revolution-favourite Rob Hayles was recognised, with the recently-retired British rider receiving a standing ovation from the 4,000-strong crowd. Hayles was joined by the elite riders and friend Mark Cavendish, who showed their appreciation to a fantastic career.

There was no doubt who the fans were most excited to see at Revolution 34, with Mark Cavendish getting the huge crowds out of their seats time and again. Speaking on his return to the track, Cavendish said: “It’s good to be back, I’ve missed it! The Revolution was hard; more intense than what I’m used to at this time of year. The reception I had was amazing. It’s packed here again tonight, and it’s great.”

Cavendish continued: “It’s nice to race at your home velodrome. It all started off here, so it’s good to come back.”

In the Revolution Sprint Omnium, David Daniell continued his form from Revolution 33 and took the win. He also took an emphatic victory at the final event, the 500m Time Trial.

In the DHL Future Stars, Emily Kay further-proved her dominance in the Girls’ event, and maintains her overall lead. In the Boys’ events, Jake Ragen moved up the standings and took the overall lead.

Team UK Youth’s win from Steven Burke and consistent performances throughout the night means that they lead the Revolution Championship with 314 points, ahead of Rouleur with 293.
Those who missed Revolution 34 will be able to watch the hour-long highlights packaged, featuring Mark Cavendish, shown on Monday 21st November on ITV4 (UK TV) at 7pm.

Garmin-Cervelo Unviels 2012 Men’s Pro Team Roster
Press Release: Team Garmin-Cervйlo went back to its roots for the unveiling of its 2012 roster with a gala team presentation in Boulder, Colorado. Hundreds of fans packed the Boulder Theater to meet the newest additions to the team and celebrate many argyle veterans.

The goals for 2012 continue to derive from the ethos of the organization, that of team achievement over that of the individual. This philosophy saw the team reach new heights in 2011, from the Classics to the Grand Tours and beyond.

“We had our strongest season in the history of the team in 2011, and we’ll be looking to build on that success in 2012,” said Jonathan Vaughters, CEO, Slipstream Sports.

“Our roster has an outstanding mix of new and returning riders, with both veteran and young talent excelling in all disciplines of the sport. This will allow us to continue to do what we do best, win as a team.”

The team is once again highlighted by sprint sensation Tyler Farrar who this year became the second American to win a stage in all three Grand Tours, David Millar, one of the team’s founding members and an exceptional time trialist, general classification phenomenon Dan Martin and team leader Christian Vande Velde.

Also returning to the team is Paris-Roubaix champion Johan Vansummeren, Tour de France top-ten Tom Danielson and current US Professional time trial champion David Zabriskie.

Slipstream Sports is dedicated to developing the next generation of cycling champions. As such Alex Howes, Raymond Kreder and Jacob Rathe are all moving up from Team Chipotle, the organization’s Continental development squad. Peter Stetina, a graduate of the program, returns for another year while neo-pro signings Jack Bauer and Nathan Haas continue the development tradition.

Veteran additions to the team include Koldo Fernandez, Fabian Wegmann and Sebastien Rosseler, while the return of Robby Hunter will give a boost to the team’s lead-out train.

2012 Team Garmin-Cervйlo Pro Men:
Jack Bauer
Tom Danielson
Thomas Dekker
Tyler Farrar
Koldo Fernandez
Murilo Fischer
Nathan Haas
Heinrich Haussler
Ryder Hesjedal
Alex Howes
Robby Hunter
Andreas Klier
Michel Kreder
Raymond Kreder
Christophe Le-Mevel
Martijn Maaskant
Dan Martin
David Millar
Ramunas Navardauskas
Tom Peterson
Jacob Rathe
Alex Rasmussen
Sebastien Rosseler
Peter Stetina
Andrew Talansky
Christian Vande Velde
Sep Vanmarcke
Johan Vansummeren
Fabian Wegmann
David Zabriskie.

Garmin-Cervйlo TTT training in Girona, Spain, January 2011:

Felt Launches New Mobile Website
View 2012 products, dealers and more from any major mobile device

Press Release: Felt Bicycles is pleased to announce the launch of its mobile version website at feltbicycles.com. This new mobile version is currently live and has been tailored for modern mobile phones and tablets including the iPhone, iPad, Android and most other mobile platforms.

Features on Felt’s new mobile-optimized site include the ability to view all products—bicycles, frames, parts and clothing—and their specifications; switch between color options; zoom in or out; swipe through product families; and even make purchases* (* limited to select products and markets) using Felt’s online store. To complement the product menu, users can also geo-locate a Felt dealer using the simple, intuitive mobile-specific Dealer Search function.

Operational highlights include an auto-detector on Felt’s global landing page, which recognizes mobile users and offers the option of bookmarking Felt’s website to the device home screen with an icon that functions like any installed app. Once logged on, the user has the choice of selecting USA or International product menus. Also present on the new mobile site are icons and links to Felt’s other online destinations including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Felt’s blog and more.

“A mobile version of our site is something we had discussed early in our 2012 planning. At the time, even our internal habits were a clear indicator of the shift to mobile online usage and interaction,” says Doug Martin, Felt’s Market Director. “Especially in cycling, which is such a technology-driven activity and demographic, having the ability to view, find and engage with our products and brand while on the move is something we believe our customers will find both useful and enjoying.”

To find out more, just log on to feltbicycles.com from any mobile device.

Q8 as new partner of the upcoming Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team
Quick-Step Cycling Team is pleased to announce that the team has reached a partnership deal with Q8.

Press Release: Starting in 2012 Q8 will be a partner of the new Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team.

Q8 has been involved in the world of cycling for several years. 2012 will be the 7th year that the Q8 brand is engaged in a team sponsorship. In the past Q8 was a sponsor for the Omega Pharma-Lotto Cycling Team and has been a sponsor of the Waalse Klassiekers since 2007.

“Pro cycling has always been very exciting to us. This sport is filled with great efforts, teamwork, experience, emotions and unique races. These are characteristics the Q8 brand strongly identifies with” says Gerrit Ruitinga, Managing Director for Kuwait Petroleum in Northwestern Europe. “We are therefore looking forward to the races of this strong and promising team and we are convinced that the Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team will achieve great results in the 2012 season.”

“Q8 is a prestigious international partner,” emphasized team manager Patrick Lefevere. “We’re proud that such an important company supports our Project and believes in cycling as a promotional tool for their brand. We’re sure that the partnership with Q8 will activate important business channels through common marketing and communication initiatives which will contribute to increasing the image of the team and their partners.”

Goodbye Jacques!
Friday the 18th of November was the anniversary of the death of one of France’s (and the World) best cyclists; Jacques Anquetil. Five Tour de France wins with 16 stages, two Giro d’Italia with 5 stages and one Vuelta a Espaсa with 1 stage, add to that nine wins in the Grand Prix des Nations time trial, Gent-Wevelgem and Liege-Bastogne-Liege, until Eddy Merckx came along he was the best rider ever seen. He had a lively personal life with drinking and affairs, plus fathering a child with his step-daughter. A very interesting character

I think I’ve used this bit of Anquetil film before, but it is great! Here he does a double in1965 with a win at the Critйrium du Dauphinй Libйrй followed by the 560km Bordeaux-Paris.


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