What's Cool In Road Cycling

EuroTrash Thursday!

Sure the Worlds are on, sure Interbike is up this weekend, but the stinky stuff still wafts our way from all 4 points! News on Manolo’s new team, the UCI & WADA, helmets, and even more Spanish hopes in Hamilton!

Manolo Says
Manolo Saiz, Team Manager for ONCE-Eroski is closing in on the new adjustments for the new 2004 team. Trailing the end of the ONCE’s sponsorship. Saiz is wasting no time, it is said that he has already begun to make deals with some of the former ONCE riders and cyclists from other teams, not to mention that the new sponsor should be mentioned soon. The principal support for the team is said to be an Italian electrical components company. Manolo has reached agreements with 13 of the ONCE riders including Joseba Beloki (This puts an end to the guessing game of what team Joseba will be riding with since his terrible crash in this years Tour De France ), and Isidro Nozal. Some foreign riders associated with the team are Giovanni Lombardi from the Domina Vacanze team and also Santos Gonzalez also from the Domina team. Filippo Pozzato from team Fassa Bortolo is also on the new team roster. More information regarding the names of the rest of the team riders and the team sponsor should be surfacing in soon.

Two Times Once
Two of team ONCEs Time Trialists, Isidro Nozal and Igor Gonzalez are very hopeful with there performance at the World Championships in Hamilton Canada today in the Men’s Elite Time Trial. Nozal has had an impressive year looking back at his second place overall finish at the Vuelta a Espana this year. Nozal says “In the Vuelta I got the silver medal, and in the World’s I want to the finishing touch, this is my first World Championship and I want to do well. I haven’t ridden much, because after a long race the power just isn’t there, but I’ve tried to maintain my form from the Vuelta. I think at this point I have more desire than energy.” However Gonzalez de Galdeano who ran an excellent race in the Vuelta with the exception of missing the podium standings in Madrid, says he look’s forward to putting on a strong performance in Hamilton this year. Last year he won bronze in Zolder, Belgium. Gonzalez says “The Vuelta is not a good reference for the World’s, I started the race well but I ended up losing time, and for that reason I haven’t forced myself in preparation. I’ve decided to rest and to regain my strength.” All in all these two riders are hoping to give us an electrifying show come time for the Elite Men Time Trial on Thursday.

Salzurg Worlds 2006
Prior to the World Championships in Hamilton this year the site for the 2006 World Championship was announced. Salzburg, Austria will be the Host Country for the road races, while Bordeaux, France will be host to the Track Championships, the Cyclo-Cross
Championships will be held in Zeddam, Netherlands, and the Mountain Biking will be held in the other “Land Down Under” Rotorua, New Zealand. For all of you hopeful starry eyed juniors the Junior Worlds will also be held in Vienna, Austria in 2005. More often than not road course location is given prior to the World Championships, this year the host Country has already been chosen, Stuttgart, Germany will be host for the 2007 World Championships. Germany also was the back up for the Track World Championships, except since the SARS outbreak; well it wouldn’t be that kosher having team mates getting sick and all-now
would it?

Ljungskog’s Relentless Grip On Victory
“Very Motivated” are the words of Susanne Ljungskog when she was speaking about her performance in Hamilton this Saturday, and defending her title in the Rainbow Jersey. Susanne said about her season that “The Tour was my number one goal this season, but
because of the problems I had with my stomach, I wasn’t able to perform at my best level, and therefore I’m even more motivated to do a good race at the World’s. Overall, I’m pleased with my season. I have won races like Tour of Holland and Giro Della Toscana, and for the Tour, well; there was nothing I could have done differently. My preparations were perfect, but things happen in cycling, and I can only congratulate Joane Somarriba.” Susanne and Klas (Her Coach) are highly prepared. They both had arrived in Hamilton on Sunday to check out the course, not to mention finding a good hotel. Even though the many many competitors
who will be racing the parcours have mentioned on the difficulty of it, Susanne seems as if she is keeping her cool. One of the other major goals for Susanne is the Olympics next year in 2004. All the rest is a story that we will have to see play itself out.

BankGiroLoterij Loses Muscle
Division II team BankGiroLoterij will be losing there strongest team mates to Belgian formation Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf-Passage Fitness. Some of the riders that will be making this switch will be Gerben Lowik, Rik Reinerink, Bert Hiemstra, Bart Voskamp, and Jan van Velzen all made the final signings of there contracts with the team. However Jan Koerts is considering an offer on the table by team BankGiroLoterij. Chocolade Jaques will be racing in Division I which will allow the new team mates to race in a more striking field. Negotiations are already in progress with Marco Bos, Laurens ten Dam, Frank van Dulmen, and Alain van Katwijk for next years BankGiroLoterij team.

Neben Out For 6 Months
United States Cyclist Amber Neben will be out for 6 months since she had tested positive for nandrolone during the Montreal World Cup race on May 31, 2003 (AAA) American Arbitration Association, and the (CAS) North American Court of Arbitration for Sport dated her suspension from July 13, 2003. She will also be disqualified from her 12th place finish During the Montreal World Cup Race. In addition to her term of suspension she also has an 18 month probation amongst which she is subject to monthly doping tests, and is required to teach Cyclists about the dangers of Supplement usage.

Big News, WADA President DICK Pound is aiming to exclude cycling from next year’s Olympics in Athens, Greece if they do not comply with WADA’s new anti-doping code. However on the flip side UCI is still p’d off towards the WADA for leaking out information criticizing anti-doping procedures in the last Tour De France. Dick pound mentioned this week that “I would like to know what the plans of the UCI are. I will certainly let them know about a new article in the Olympic Manifesto that says that the world anti-doping code is obligatory for all Olympic movements.” On Friday UCI President Hein Verbruggen will discuss the situation Verbruggen mentioned that “There is a WADA code that has been accepted and obviously we will comply with that code, but that is a lot of work because over the last 20 years the UCI has developed a very detailed rule book for anti-doping control. Now the lawyers have to go into the WADA code and fit it into our existing laws and that is the work that is currently being carried out. There is no doubt we will comply, we will get there certainly before Athens.” Verbruggen said later “I feel extremely annoyed that we are continually singled out due to the happenings in 1998 Tour (de France) and I am not prepared to accept that any longer, For the time being there will be no WADA independent observers in cycling until we have had a good discussion. I have the feeling we are singled out, we want to be treated like every other sport.” Verbruggen feels that these actions led on by the WADA are leading to a type of “Double Standard”.

Helmet’s, The New Black
Yes it is official, at least in 2004 it will be. Helmets are being made mandatory for all UCI sanctioned events starting during the year 2004. Tuesday, during a meeting of the UCI at the Hamilton World Championships. This is not the first time that this law was tried and enforced, it first was put into play in 1991 however the riders rebelled. After the death of Andrei Kivilev due to serious head injury the law was once more reintroduced, and riders were made to wear helmets from the start of the Giro d’Italia in May onward, however during mountain stages riders bent the rule by leaving there buckles unfastened. The UCI has decided to permit this until next year when even this will not be acceptable, and the law will be mandatory.

Aussi Aussi Aussi Oi Oi Oi
Peter Dawson of West Oz is now the 3rd team mate of Australia’s World Champion Pursuit Team, to race in the Tasmanian Christmas Carnivals. Graeme Brown, Brett Lancaster and Luke Roberts produced a stunning ride in the final, stopping the clock at 3.57.185 minutes for the 4000 m and setting a new world record. Not to forget about Dawson also in that mix. At the age of 21 he’s been a regular Rep. since 1999, and a member of the Australian Junior Team whom won the Pursuit Title that year. Beside Dawson’s abilities he also has a great skill in the Track racing circuit. Keep an eye on this kid; he’s bound to keep us all motivated.

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