What's Cool In Road Cycling

EuroTrash Monday!

UCI investigations and teams joining the MPCC all point to change in the air, let’s hope. A full weekend of Cyclo-cross and a couple of races from Australia, with video included. The teams are all going training and still signing riders, except for Linus Gerdemann who isn’t. OK, Monday EuroTrash, its here, so find the coffee mug and get too it!

“Top Story”

UCI Independent Commission Contacts Witnesses
Potential witnesses helping the investigation into the UCI and its handling of Lance Armstrong’s doping case. The commission will not be looking into whether or not Armstrong and associates broke any doping laws, but how the UCI under the presidency of Hien Verbruggen and Pat McQuaid may have covered up a test result and the implications of money donated by the American.

The main points of the investigation are:
Whether the UCI knew, or should have known, what Armstrong and the US Postal Service Team were doing.
If the UCI’s anti-doping policy from 1998 to 2012 was adequate.
Did Armstrong or the US Postal Service Team make inappropriate payments to the UCI.
Did the UCI discouraged people who had evidence of the activities of Mr Armstrong and the US Postal Service Team from making statements.
Did the UCI co-operated with the USADA investigation fully.
Did the UCI have a conflict of interests between its roles in promoting the sport of cycling and investigating Lance Armstrong and the US Postal Service Team.
Are the UCI’s current anti-doping controls adequate and should people previously involved in doping be permitted to continue to work within the sport of cycling.

The evidence must be sent to the commission before the last day of 2012 and the hearing will take place in London in April 2013.

The commission wants written evidence and documents; but can they not just read the USADA evidence on the Lance Armstrong case?

Or they could watch stuff on YouTube:

Vlaamse Druivenveldrit, Overijse Cyclo-cross 2012:
After Saturday’s hiccup, Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet-Euphony) made no mistake on Sunday’s Druivenveldrit cyclo-cross by riding away from the others on a very tough course made up of mud, cobbles, tarmac and steep run-up’s. Nys got away with Klaas Vantornout (Sunweb-Revor) after three laps, at around halfway, with Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) chasing. Nys looked at his best and rode away from Vantornout who was caught and dropped by Albert, but did manage to finish third. Nys just keeps dominating as the World champion notched up another place and must be getting fed up with the lower steps of the podium.

Vlaamse Druivenveldrit, Overijse Cyclo-cross Result:
1. Sven Nys (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Euphony in 56:40
2. Niels Albert (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus at 0:28
3. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Revor at 0:51
4. Thijs van Amerongen (Ned) AA Drink Cyclocross Team at 1:43
5. Marcel Meisen (Ger) BKCP-Powerplus at 1:46
6. Aurelien Duval (Fra) UV Aube at 1:48
7. Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Euphony at 2:16
8. Jan Denuwelaere (Bel) Style & Concept at 2:24
9. Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Revor at 2:44
10. Rob Peeters (Bel) Telenet-Fidea.

Link to Sunday’s race on Sporza.

Scheldecross Cyclo-cross, Antwerpen 2012
Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Revor) took his second win of the season in Antwerp in the Scheldecross on Saturday. After a final lap battle with Belgian champion Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet-Euphony) and World champion Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus), Pauwels came out on top in the sprint when Nys pulled his foot out. The early action saw Sven Vanthourenhout (Landbouwkrediet-Euphony) with team leader Nys pull away a group of; Simon Zahner (EKZ), Radomir Simunek and Dieter Vanthourenhout (both BKCP-Powerplus) to be joined by Wietse Bosmans also BKCP-Powerplus. As the race proceeded more riders managed to cross to the leaders, until a large group needed to be split, which Nys did with only Pauwels and Albert for company. On the last lap Albert was put in trouble by Nys and the sprint was going to be between the Belgian champion and Pauwels. Nys had the advantage over the styles and into the last corner to start the sprint, but when his foot came off the pedal; Pauwels jumped for the win. Albert stayed ahead of the chase group which was brought in by Klaas Vantornout (Sunweb-Revor).

Scheldecross Cyclo-cross, Antwerpen Result:
1. Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Revor in 56:50
2. Sven Nys (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Euphony
3. Niels Albert (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus at 0:15
4. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Revor at 0:22
5. Bart Aernouts (Bel) AA Drink Cyclocross Team at 0:28
6. Radomir Simunek (Cze) BKCP-Powerplus
7. Wietse Bosmans (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus
8. Jim Aernouts (Bel) Sunweb-Revor
9. Rob Peeters (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:32
10. Bart Wellens (Bel) Telenet-Fidea at 0:36.

Saturday’s race on Vier.be:

NSW Grand Prix Series, Australia, 2012:
NSW GP Series 2012: Cronulla Round 1
Rabobank’s Michael Matthews won the first round of the New South Wales Grand Prix Series in Cronulla. After lots of attacks through-out the race a group of three succeeded to gain enough space; Matthews, Aaron Gate (L & M Group Racing) and Jens Mouris (Orica-GreenEdge) fought out the finish with the soon to be Orica-GreenEdge rider, Michael Matthews, taking full points into the next event.

NSW GP Series 2012: Cronulla Round 1 Result:
1. Michael Matthews (Aus) Rabobank 20pts
2. Aaron Gate (NZl) L and M Group Racing NZ 18pts
3. Jens Mouris (Hol) Orica-GreenEdge 16pts
4. Thomas Palmer (Aus) Drapac 15pts
5. Chris Sutton (Aus) Sky 14pts
6. Jack Edwards (Aus) NSWIS 13pts
7. Joseph Lewis (Aus) GPM Wilson Racing 12pts
8. Kenny De Ketele (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator 11pts
9. Bernard Sulzberger (Aus) Team Raleigh-GAC 10pts
10. Michael Hepburn (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 10pts.

NSW GP Series bike cam from last year:

NSW GP Series 2012: Wollongong Round 2
Thomas Palmer of Drapac Pro Cycling won the second round in Wollongong, but the previous day’s winner; Michael Matthews (Rabobank) took the final overall. As on Saturday the win came from a small group which included Series Leader Matthews, Palmer, Mitchell Docker (Orica-GreenEdge), Marc Williams (Team Budget Forklifts), Aaron Gate (L and M Group Racing) and after a hard chase; Jack Edwards (NSWIS). Palmer was too fast for the others taking the win from Docker and Matthews. Both Palmer and Matthews are from Australia’s capital city of Canberra.

NSW GP Series 2012: Wollongong Round 2 Result:
1. Thomas Palmer (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling 20pts
2. Mitchell Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 18pts
3. Michael Matthews (Aus) Rabobank 16pts
4. Jack Edwards (Aus) NSWIS 15pts
5. Aaron Gate (NZl) L and M Group Racing NZ 14pts
6. Marc Williams (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts 13pts
7. Jens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge 12pts
8. Leigh Howard (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 11pts.

NSW GP Series 2012: Final Overall Result:
1. Michael Matthews (Aus) Rabobank 36pts
2. Thomas Palmer (Aus) Drapac Professional Cycling 35pts
3. Aaron Gate (NZl) L and M Group Racing NZ 32pts
4. Mitchell Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 28pts
5. Jens Mouris (Ned) Orica-GreenEdge 28pts
6. Jack Edwards (Aus) NSWIS 28pts
7. Chris Sutton (Aus) Sky 24pts
8. Marc Williams (Aus) Team Budget Forklifts 23pts
9. Joseph Lewis (Aus) GPM-Wilson Racing 22pts
10. Kenny De Ketele (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator 21pts

NSW GP Series in Wollongong:

More Teams for the MPCC
Two more WorldTour teams have applied to join the Mouvement Pour un Cyclisme Crйdible (MPCC), Rabobank which will be the White Label team in 2013 and Lampre-Merida have applied along with UCI ProConti teams; Verandas Willems, Creland-Euphony and the diabetic Novo Nordisk team also the UCI Conti Oster Hus Ridler team wish to be part of the anti-doping set-up. Eleven teams are already signed up and there is a list of thirteen other teams wishing to take part.

Tour de France in Scotland?
Edinburgh City Council is to vote on the possibility of the Tour de France having it’s Grand Depart in Scotland’s capital city in a couple of years. The proposal is that the team presentation would be held in Edinburgh Castle with the race start the next day and stages heading south into the North of England.

From Scottish TV:

Rogers goes to Saxo-Tinkoff
As has been rumoured for weeks, Michael Rogers will leave Sky at the end of the season to ride for Saxo-Tinkoff for the next two years. The triple World time trial champion was part of Bradley Wiggin’s Tour de France winning team and will now be in the service of potential Tour winner; Alberto Contador. Although Rogers is a strong and willing “Super Domestique” he has won many shorter stage races in his own right. Team Manager; Bjarne Riis commented on his new signing: “I think Michael’s palmares pretty much speaks for itself. He is without a doubt a world class rider, a very strong time trialist, who is also capable of climbing, and on top of that he is a great guy. Surely he will add strength to our team throughout the season, and I believe he will be a very important rider for us, both when it comes to helping Alberto in Grand Tours and to secure results on his own.” There has been speculation, by some, as to Rogers signing the Sky teams’ “zero tolerance” charter and his work with Dr. Ferrari over six years ago, but Rogers has always denied that drugs were involved and his contact with Ferrari was only for training. Levi Leipheimer did name Rogers in his affidavit in the Lance Armstrong/USADA case as being present at high altitude training with Ferrari, although Sky also trains at altitude on Mount Teide on the island of Tenerife. Saxo-Tinkoff should find out if it has a WorldTour licence today (Monday 10th December).

Michael Rogers at the Tour of Britain 2006:

No Team for Gerdemann
Linus Gerdemann has, so far, no team for the 2013 season due to his contract with the RadioShack-Nissan team not being extended. With three new riders joining the team there was no room for the German, Stijn Devolder from Vacansoleil-DCM, Danilo Hondo from Lampre-ISD and Robert Kiserlovski from Astana arrived and Gerdemann had to go.

Linus Gerdemann at the Tour de France:

British Sportsman Award for Wiggins
Tour de France winner; Bradley Wiggins had been voted British Sportsman of the year by the British Sports Journalists’ Association ahead of athlete Mo Farah and tennis player Andy Murray. He is the fifth cyclist to win the award after World road race champion Mark Cavendish last year, Reg Harris the World Professional sprint champion in 1950, Tommy Simpson World road race champion 1965 and Chris Hoy the multi Olympic, World and National champion in 2008.

Bradley Wiggins A Year in Yellow:

Ag2r-Mondiale Team for the Tour Down Under
The French Ag2r-La Mondiale team has always been successful in the Santos Tour Down Under with four overall wins in the Australian stage race. The team leader should be Yauheni Hutarovich, but at this time of year form is never certain. Mikael Cherel will be the climber in the team, but, as usual it’s a strong all-round team.

Ag2r La Mondiale team for the 2013 Tour Down Under:
Davide Appollonio (ITA),
Gйdiminas Bagdonas (LIT),
Guillaume Bonnafond (FRA),
Mikael Cherel (FRA),
Blel Kadri (FRA),
Yauheni Hutarovich (BLR),
Julian Kern (GER).
Manager: Laurent Biondi (FRA).

Highlight from the 2012 Tour Down Under:

ORICA-AIS Announces 2013 Roster
Press Release: With Emma Johannson and Sungeun Gu recently announced as new signings to ORICA-AIS, the Australian outfit is proud to share its complete line-up for the 2013 season. Alongside Johannson and Gu, Annette Edmondson and Gracie Elvin join returning riders Tiffany Cromwell, Loes Gunnewijk, Shara Gillow, Melissa Hoskins, Jessie MacLean, and Amanda Spratt to comprise the 10-rider squad.

“Before we discuss the new squad, I want to extend sincere thanks and wish all the best in the future to Judith Arndt, Alex Rhodes, Claudia Hдusler, Linda Villumsen and Rowena Fry,” said Sports Director David McPartland. “Our first season was a dream year from our perspective, and in large part, this was due to the leadership and camaraderie on display by our entire team. Judith, Alex, Claudia, Linda and Row now move on to things outside of cycling. They do so after having left a lasting impact on our team.”

McPartland will look towards Emma Johannson to fill the void in leadership left by the retirement of Arndt and Villumsen.

“We sought out a rider with a lot of experience who could lead some of our younger Australians,” noted McPartland. “Straightaway we identified Emma as a natural fit for this role.”

Elvin and Edmondson will look to Johansson and their more experienced Australian teammates to guide them during their first professional road season.

“Gracie is an exciting signing,” McPartland said. “She came to us through the Australian Institute of Sport [AIS] program. The AIS team is a feeder team for ORICA-AIS. When we started the team from scratch last year, several of the riders we had signed had ridden for the AIS at some point, but Gracie is the first rider we can point to and say she was 100% developed in the AIS program and has now come to us to become a professional.”

The 24-year-old rose through the amateur ranks quickly after transitioning from mountain biking to road cycling. She earned a spot in the AIS program last year after showing promise in Europe during the 2010 season.

“Gracie funded a trip to Europe in 2010,” explained McPartland. “She went over there by herself and made all the arrangements herself. It showed a lot of character and promise. She was selected as part of the AIS group the following year because of the tenacity and grit she had shown. She proved her worth last season not only in gaining more experience but in garnering solid results.”

Elvin finished second at Omloop van Borsele and won the road race and finished second in the individual time trial at the Oceania Cycling Championships last year.

Where Edmondson lacks Elvin’s road experience, her accomplishments on the track indicate great promise. Joining ORICA-AIS through the AIS track endurance program, Edmondson’s track results, including a bronze medal in the Omnium at the London Olympics, suggest a real strength in sprinting.

“She’s certainly an upcoming sprinter with a huge future ahead of her,” said McPartland. “She’s undeniably talented, and while her obvious strength is in the sprints, I suspect she may develop into more of an all-rounder. A few years ago, I watched her race in the Czech Republic over an undulating to moderately hilly course, and I was surprised at how good she was. She’ll be an exciting one to watch develop this year.”

McPartland expects Edmondson to follow a similar program to Hoskins. Both riders will balance their track obligations with a road programme.

“Nettie will do what we saw Mel do this year,” explained McPartland. “We’ll have both girls at the very beginning of the season before they turn their attention to track through Track Worlds. Then, they’ll come back to us for the rest of the season.”

McPartland’s equally excited about the opportunities that await his returning riders. He expects Cromwell and MacLean, in particular, to step up in their second year with the team.

“I’m looking forward to seeing further development in our riders that are coming back for their second year,” said McPartland. “I anticipate moving them up the ladder, so to speak, and giving them more responsibility and chances in certain races. Jess MacLean and Tiff Cromwell, especially, will build on their successes from our first year. With Judith, Alex and Linda gone, it will be good to see Spratty, Shara and Loes assume more leadership within the team.”

McPartland proudly points to a handful of highlights in what was an undeniably successful maiden season.

“We went to Qatar, a flat race, without a pure sprinter and we won the whole tour with Judith,” recalled McPartland. “That was an awesome early show of team strength. We had to ride as a team to secure that victory. It was our first international race, and it was the perfect way to start.”

“Tour of Flanders is another highlight,” McPartland continued. “It is the most famous one-day race on the women’s calendar, and the team fully supported Judith’s ambitions. China with Mel was satisfying. The Tour of Chongming was one of her first races with us after coming in from a break after Track Worlds. She won the overall against a world class field and went on to take second in the China World Cup.”

The results continued throughout the season, with Cromwell and Arndt supplying important victories.
“Tiff’s stage win at the Giro was impressive,” noted McPartland. “She worked hard all year for her teammates, and I was so happy that she got a result for herself. I was also thrilled for Judith when she won Thьringen. It was perfect for a German rider to win the overall at a German race in her last season.”

Although pleased with the team’s silver medal in the team time trial at the Road World Championships, McPartland sees the discipline as one obvious area for improvement in the team’s second season.

“We already have strategies in place in the hopes to see improvement in the team time trial next year,” said McPartland. “We did a super job this year, but there’s room for improvement. We’ll be training differently and hoping for an even better outcome than we saw this year.”

McPartland expects the team to build on the successful foundation it established during its first season.

“I want to see this team perform in all areas,” said McPartland. “We’re not a team that will focus exclusively on riding for the overall in a tour or building a sprint train with big lead-outs only for our sprinters. We’re a versatile team. We have sprinters who can time trial. We have climbers who can do lead-outs and we have domestiques who know how to take opportunities for themselves. That’s what we’re all about. I can afford to send our girls to different races all year and count on them to demonstrate that we are team that can perform well in flat races, hilly races and team time trials. We can win stages and overalls and one day events.”

“We’re a team that offers opportunities to all of our riders,” McPartland added. “There’s something for everyone we’ve signed this year.”

The ten rider squad may seek one additional rider at the mid-point of the season to compliment the well-rounded squad ORICA-AIS have assembled.

ORICA-AIS 2013 Roster:
Tiffany Cromwell
Gracie Elvin
Nettie Edmondson
Shara Gillow
Sungeun Gu
Loes Gunnewijk
Melissa Hoskins
Emma Johansson
Jessie MacLean
Amanda Spratt.

Backstage with the Orica-AIS team at the TTT World championships:

Lotto Belisol Must have WorldTour Licence!
The Lotto Belisol team manager; Bill Olivier can’t believe it possible that the Belgian team will not be in the WorldTour next year. Olivier told La Derniere Heure “because we had a very good 2012 season and our team has remained virtually unchanged for 2013. Our riders have their tests and the young riders will be one year stronger in 2013. Our small administrative error was resolved three or four days after the deadline, and we received the green light from the UCI on this point.” He added, “as for the issue of ethics, which is very important in cycling today, in this we are irreproachable.” As to what they will do if they don’t get the WorldTour has not been thought of, “frankly, to not have the licence is unthinkable! There is no thought of a plan B or plan C if we don’t. We deserve it and we have done everything to get it.”

Lotto Belisol Hurt Train:

Lotto Belisol: Riders take UCI tests
Press Release: Each year all riders have to undergo a preventive medical check-up, this is obliged by the UCI. On Monday and Tuesday the riders of Lotto Belisol visited doctors Demanez, Lenom and Ghekiere on the department of cardiology and medical imaging in the Centre Hospitalier Chrйtien (CHC) in Liиge.

Team doctor Jan Mathieu: “The tests are made obligatory by the UCI since more than ten years, it’s logical to limit as much as possible fatal heart failures in sport. All riders have to take three tests. A normal cardiogram in rest, an exertion test in combination with an electrocardiogram and an ultrasound of the heart, to examine among other things the functioning of the cardiac muscle and the cardiac valves.”

“At Lotto Belisol we go a bit further. Also the oxygen level of the riders is measured, an accurate way to determine the VO2max (maximal oxygen consumption), possible abnormalities can be further examined by taking a scan. Apart from that we let all our riders take a Holter monitoring during our training camp. During the night and during the training they are monitored 24 hours, so we can see for example if their heart isn’t beating extremely low when they are asleep. The UCI tests have showed that all our riders are fit.”

Rider Jьrgen Roelandts: “The UCI tests have become an annual habit. On the one hand it is of course very important to know if there are any problems. As a pro it would be a worst-case scenario if an abnormality is found, but that is the reason why these kinds of tests are important. On the other hand we already get to see how our shape is thanks to the maximal exertion test, which is always instructive. I am in the middle of the conditional built-up for next season. My broken collarbone has healed, so I can totally focus on what has to come.”

And Lotto Belisol Go Training
Press Release: From Saturday 8th till Tuesday 18th of December Lotto Belisol is – in cooperation with Thomas Cook Sport and the Baguet Cycling Center – going on a training camp to the Spanish Mojacar, where the team will lay the foundation for the season of 2013.

Only Greg Henderson won’t be there. The New-Zealander, who has just become father for the second time, will train in Australia for the next few weeks. Sander Cordeel, who recently had to undergo surgery of his knee, will join the team halfway of the training camp. Jurgen Van den Broeck already flew over a couple of days ago to be able to train in better circumstances.

Sports manager Marc Sergeant: “Last week we got together for a first time for the teambuilding, but from now on it’s mainly about cycling. Such a training camp is especially meant to work on the basic condition for the start of next season. It’s different than before, now the riders already have had a few weeks of training, which is necessary to be competitive in the second half of January in for example the Tour Down Under.”

“The riders will train in different groups because not everyone is aiming for the same goal. Thanks to the collaboration with Energy Lab we can perfectly determine what kind of training each rider needs and we can easily adjust and individualize. The riders see how the condition of the others is and nobody likes to be the odd one out. I have to say that last year everyone began the training camp in a good condition and when I see the test results of the past few weeks, it seems to me that it will be now the case as well.”

“In comparison to last year we don’t have as many newcomers, but is a good thing to all live together in group, according to a “cycling rhythm”. There will be made a lot of time to have individual conversations about the program of each rider for the first part of the season. We know the location; we have been there also last year. The weather is perfect – sunny and 15 to 20 degrees, ideal to train – the roads are nice to ride on and there isn’t much traffic. That’s why we have chosen the same location this year.”

Lotto team mess it up in 2011:

Tour of Britain Organization Put Out to Tender
After organizing the Tour of Britain since its return to the calendar in 2004, SweetSpot will have to take part in an open tender to run the race from 2014 onwards. British Cycling announced that due to the recent popularity in cycling in Britain it was “time is now right to assess all options” according to BC. SweetSpot said that they were surprised and disappointed “at the decision by British Cycling to seek expressions of interest to tender for the right to organise The Tour of Britain.”

Tour of Britain promo:

Alberto Contador Celebrated his 30th Birthday with the First Stage of his Junior Team
Press Release: Alberto Contador was present at the first stage of his junior
team in Segovia, and also celebrated its 30th birthday, a symbolic date in which the Pinto champion gave the start to one of his most ambitious projects, the creation of a cycling school that aspires to become a model.

The Specialized-Alberto Contador Foundation team met in Santana Hotel (Segovia) for the first time with his 14 riders, which will remain there until Sunday performing various winter preparation activities, from hiking up the mountains to gym and pool sessions, not to
mention the first bike outings because here they will have their new bikes, assembled by Contadors’ personal mechanic, Faustino Muсoz.

Alberto Contador was with members of his team to encourage them and give them a little talk at the beginning of this session, a gesture that his new young riders responded to with a cake and singing ‘happy birthday’. For Alberto, the experience of being able to support young riders who are at the start is especially rewarding. “It was very emotional.”

“To see the kids as I began, with a huge illusion, valuing all this that we can offer, I am very excited and motivates me especially”, said Alberto. “Starting this team is a great effort and a great responsibility, but also motivates me to continue my own career to see them struggle at this difficult time, which is not the best for cycling”. In addition, Alberto received the surprise of a birthday cake that was not expected.

“Yes, they gave me a surprise and sang ‘happy birthday’ for my 30th birthday, but no, I didn’t feel old, although I’ve gone from 20 to 30 and this is serious”, said the Saxo-Tinkoff leader. Sport Director Jose Luis de Santos, a former professional cyclist and last Spanish national team coach, will be the first sports director and head of a project created with a commitment of continuity for at least three years for the junior team and wants to grow in 2014 with a Under-23 team and a junior women’s team. “I am very happy and excited to start this project,” said De Santos. “For the first time we net all the riders and technical staff with the idea of setting the plan for the whole year, making the classic winter training and give riders their new bikes that they can take home.”

The team’s schedule is not yet definite, but already they know when they will debut. “It will be on February 23 in Don Benito,” De Santos says, “but we are waiting to know the final national calendar to plan the season and also trips abroad, probably to Italy, which is the cradle of cycling in these categories,” he concluded.

Happy birthday Alberto:

No Sharp, Now it’s Rapha Condor JLT
Press Release: The Rapha Condor Continental Cycling Team are delighted to announce a new sponsorship deal with the JLT Group, an international group of Risk Specialists and Employee Benefits Consultants, for the 2013 season.

2013 will mark the sixth season that Rapha Condor has sponsored a British UCI registered team and the partnership with JLT will underline the team’s significant commitment to the future of British cycling, as the team continues to focus on its overarching goal of developing young British talent.

The JLT Group’s involvement marks the second time that the team has attracted a major international company to back the sport in the UK, after a successful three year partnership with Sharp saw the electronics manufacturer increase its sponsorship of professional cycling to World Tour level.

The Jardine Lloyd Thompson group of Insurance Brokers is one of the largest of its type in the world and their ethos of offering a distinctive choice to their clients and partners through their combination of independence and specialism is something that relates strongly to the identity of the Rapha Condor team and the brands that it represents.

Speaking on behalf of Rapha Condor, Grant Young of Condor cycles was delighted to welcome a new sponsor to both the team and the sport of cycling,

“We can’t wait for the 2013 to start, this is the next chapter in an exciting adventure for British cycle sport and the team. I am pleased we can work with another sponsor who understands our approach, ethics, passion for developing the sport from the grass roots up to the sky.”

Meetings between the team management and JLT first took place when Charlie Pearch, a senior partner at the company as well as a longtime supporter of the team, saw the opportunity for JLT to sponsor one of the country’s most influential cycling teams.

‘‘Our participation in this venture with Rapha Condor fulfils our desire to help sport at grass roots level, particularly where our involvement can deliver meaningful value. We not only want to encourage the younger generation to live a healthy lifestyle but to be a voice of mutual respect between all road users. Our expectation is that the Rapha Condor JLT team will continue to perform well under the most respected of Directeur Sportifs but it is as important for us that the team races with style and panache and in its own well-loved and inimitable style to represent the very best of British cycling.”

The team, who recently revealed an even younger line-up for 2013, will be focused once again on continuing the work that they started this year which saw impressive performances by the young team and was capped with Mike Cuming’s becoming the U23 National Road Race Champion.

Team manager John Herety commented, “I am delighted that JLT share our enthusiasm about the way that this team aims to work with young riders. JLT understood this very quickly and they recognised that in the current environment in cycling a team like ours will educate young riders into making the correct choices.”

“I have been really pleased with the progress that these riders have made in the last twelve months, and I think that next year we will start to see the results of the work that these young guys have put in as they put into practice what they’ve learned. We have redesigned our programme with the new young riders in mind, putting a focus on getting these guys racing and winning, and I am sure that it will be a great year.”

An announcement will be made shortly regarding Rapha Condor JLT’s first races and programme for 2013.

Trending with Rapha Condor:

After the Gold Rush: 200,000 Rise in Regular Cyclists
Press Release: British Cycling Chief Executive Ian Drake has welcomed the latest results from Sport England’s Active People survey as “our legacy in action” after a summer which saw Britain’s first Tour de France winner and extraordinary success at London 2012.

The results released today show that over 200,000 more people are cycling at least once per week than were in October 2011. British Cycling is exceeding the ambitious growth target set by Sport England four years ago by over 75,000. This brings the total number of people in England now cycling at least once per week to just under two million.

Drake said: “With almost two million people cycling once a week following a summer of unprecedented cycling success, this is our legacy in action.

“British Cycling has set new standards in elite sport and, with these latest figures from Sport England, we can celebrate gold medal results in grassroots participation.

“These figures are reward for the hard work done over the last four years by British Cycling, Sport England, our principal partner Sky and our local government partners.

“After Beijing, British Cycling set out to inspire a new audience to get involved in cycling at all levels. We have programmes for all ages and abilities – from families who want to cycle for fun, to young people aspiring to be the next Bradley Wiggins or Laura Trott. The great results we’ve seen today are also critically down to the dedication of all our members, regions, volunteers, coaches, clubs and leaders – without whom our sport wouldn’t function.”

Today’s results also show that there has also been a significant increase in organised participation. British Cycling’s Sky Ride initiative, the rise in sportives and a healthy racing calendar are attracting more people to become regular cyclists. In the last four years, there has been a 29% increase in the number of organised competitive events and a 145% increase in the number of non-competitive events on offer from British Cycling.

The number of women cycling has risen dramatically in the last 12 months – almost 63,000 more women are cycling regularly. British Cycling’s Breeze programme offering female-only led bike rides has contributed to this rise, as have the inspirational performances by our female cyclists this year.

Participation amongst the number of people with a long term disability has also increased by almost 15,000 in the last 12 months.

The latest tranche of results from Sport England’s Active People survey covers the 12 month period from October 2011 to October 2012, and measures participation rates for all sports.

Since 2009 British Cycling and its Principal Partner Sky have been working together to get more people cycling. Key achievements include:

British Cycling and Sky have achieved their ambitious target of getting one million more people cycling by 2013 one year early. In October 2012, the results of an independent survey of over 10,000 people showed that one million more people are now cycling at least once a month.

Since 2009, British Cycling and Sky have organised 49 mass participation traffic-free city centre events attended by almost 650,000 people.

Over 5,000 free community bike rides for anyone to join, including women-only rides, have been set up and 1,500 Ride Leaders have been trained to deliver them.

A social network for cycling – Social Cycling Groups – has been created via www.goskyride.com with over 13,000 people now setting up their own groups and rides.

Over 100,000 young people have been engaged in our Go-Ride programme over the past four years.

British Cycling also works in partnership with 45 local authorities to promote and deliver cycling opportunities.

Behind the Scenes at a Belgian Cyclo-cross
Here is a great bit of film from the Koksijde World Cup from SHIMANORaceTV. Thanks to the guy’s at The Bicycle Works, Edinburgh for pointing it out.

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