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EuroTrash Thursday!

Another fun-packed EuroTrash Thursday with the results and video’s from Romandie and Turkey. ”Top Story” brings us up to date with Riccardo Riccт…still on his bike. Some Giro d’Italia, Lombardia and Vuelta a Espaсa news, plus loads of other info. Best have a couple of biscuits with that big coffee!

“Top Story”

Riccardo Riccт Still Riding!
A report in Romagna noi was brought to my attention by my friend Michele Tomasi earlier this week, it concerns the banned rider; Riccardo Riccт. He is still riding his bike and decided to join in with the San Marino Gran Fondo which did not go down well with the organisers. The Romagna noi is fighting in the Riccт corner as they think cycling is great due to it being run on open roads for free, but not for Riccт, the rider dressed in black (riding a blue & white Cipollini) without a number was sitting on the wheels, not affecting the ride of others, but his presence was not wanted and was asked to leave the course. He wasn’t too keen on stopping and was told by the organisers that; “if Riccт doesn’t leave the group, all will be disqualified!” It is reported that the group were not happy about Riccт, a 29 year old, being treated like a leper and slowed down to 30 kph to demonstrate their solidarity. The feeling of the others is said to be; “better you are with us than end like Pantani.”

Yes I agree with the sentiments of Romagna noi; the road is free for everyone, but did Riccт have to ride on that road on that day knowing that there was a Grand Fondo being run? Also, he is banned from racing, but not the freedom of riding a bike on a public road and as much as we don’t like what he has done in the past, I’m sure none of us would like to see him go down the same road as Marco Pantani. We are all cyclists and love riding a bike for many reasons and obviously Riccт still wants to ride his bike, so good for him.

The full article is here: www.romagnanoi.it/news.

Here is a Riccт video, dont think he would like it?

Tour de Romandie 2012
Tuesday’s Prologue Stage was a 3.34 kilometre time trial round Lausanne and Sky’s Geraint Thomas showed his speed to cover the course in 3:29, beating Giacomo Nizzolo (RadioShack-Nissan) and his team mate World champion Mark Cavendish. The Welshman said he was at Romandie to help Cavendish in the sprints and Bradley Wiggins for the overall. Of the other GC favourites; Wiggins was 11th, Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank) 37th and Tour winner Cadel Evans (BMC) was 80th. Another five stages to come, finishing with a mountain time trial of 16.5 kilometres up Crans-Montana on Sunday.

Tour de Romandie Prologue Stage Result:
1. Geraint Thomas (GB) Sky in 3:29.43
2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Radioshack-Nissan at 0:04.64
3. Mark Cavendish (GB) Sky at 0:06.13
4. Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky at 0:06.17
5. Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 0:06.47
6. Julien Vermote (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 0:07.97
7. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 0:08.17
8. Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank at 0:08.46
9. Manuele Boaro (Ita) Saxo Bank at 0:08.75
10. Alex Rasmussen (Den) Garmin-Barracuda at 0:08.95.

Tour de Romandie Overall After the Pologue Stage:
1. Geraint Thomas (GB) Sky at 3:29
2. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Radioshack-Nissan at 0:05
3. Mark Cavendish (GB) Sky at 0:06
4. Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky at 0:06
5. Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 0:06
6. Julien Vermote (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 0:08
7. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 0:08
8. Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank at 0:08
9. Manuele Boaro (Ita) Saxo Bank at 0:09
10. Alex Rasmussen (Den) Garmin-Barracuda at 0:09.

Here is the link on RAI Sport.

Bradley Wiggins (Sky) threw down the gauntlet on Stage 1 by going to the front and riding so hard that no one could come past him. Wiggins took over the overall lead from his team mate Geraint Thomas who was distanced Haut de la Cфte as was Mark Cavendish in the last 30 kilometres. Martin Kohler (BMC), Kenny Dehaes (Lotto-Belisol), Angelo Tulik (Europcar) and Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun) had been in an early break that was caught to set up more break away attempts. The Sky team controlled the action until near the end when Liquigas-Cannondale and Rabobank took over. Wiggins watched as the others did the lead-out work before he made his bold move.

Tour de Romandie Stage 1 Result:
1. Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky in 4:50:23
2. Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM
3. Paolo Tiralongo (Ita) Astana
4. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC
5. Maciej Paterski (Pol) Liquigas-Cannondale
6. Vasil Kiryienka (Blr) Movistar
7. Serge Pauwels (Bel) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
8. Daniele Pietropolli (Ita) Lampre-ISD
9. Ryder Hesjedal (Can) Garmin-Barracuda
10. Pieter Weening (Ned) GreenEdge.

Tour de Romandie Overall After Stage 1:
1. Bradley Wiggins (GB) Sky in 4:53:51
2. Michael Rogers (Aus) Sky at 0:07
3. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 0:09
4. Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank
5. Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Barracuda at 0:11
6. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Rabobank
7. David Zabriskie (USA) Garmin-Barracuda at 0:12
8. Simon Spilak (Slo) Katusha
9. Molina Ruben Plaza (Spa) Movistar
10. Tiago Machado (Por) RadioShack-Nissan at 0:13.

Here is the link to stage 1 on SF.

Tour of Turkey 2012
After being caught behind the late crash in stage 1, Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) made no mistake in Stage 2 by outsprinting Matt Goss of GreenEdge at the end of the 153 kilometres from Alanya to Antalya. A break went up the road after 50 kilometres, it included; Alexandre Vinokourov (Astana), Laurent Pichon (Bretagne-Schuller), Paolo Locatelli (Colnago-CSF Inox), Laszlo Bodrogi (Team Type 1-Sanofi) and Matteo Fedi (Utensilnord Named). At the 100 kilometre mark they had 5 minutes, but that was the end of their escape as the peloton chased them down catching the five just 5 kilometres out from the finish. Matt Goss’s second place gave him the overall.

Tour of Turkey Stage 2 Result:
1. Andrй Greipel (Ger) Lotto-Belisol in 3:16:04
2. Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Greenedge
3. Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) Europcar
4. Mark Renshaw (Aus) Rabobank
5. Andre Schulze (Ger) Team Netapp
6. Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quickstep
7. Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Astana
8. Filippo Baggio (Ita) Utensilnord Named
9. Alexey Tsatevitch (Rus) Katusha
10. Andrea Guardini (Ita) Farnese Vini-Selle Italia

Tour of Turkey Overall After Stage 2:
1. Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Greenedge in 6:21:47
2. Andrй Greipel (Ger) Lotto-Belisol at 0:02
3. Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) Europcar at 0:08
4. Theo Bos (Ned) Rabobank
5. Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 0:12
6. Filippo Baggio (Ita) Utensilnord Named
7. Mark Renshaw (Aus) Rabobank
8. Valentin Iglinskiy (Kaz) Astana
9. Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Lampre-ISD
10. Alexey Tsatevitch (Rus) Katusha.

Stage 2:

Mьthiю etabэn son anlarэ por EurosportTurkiye

Ivailo Gabrovski (Konya Torku Seker Spor) won the tough finish of Stage 3 to Elmali by 1:29 from Astana’s Alexandr Dyachenko to take the overall with five more stages to go. The race was split to pieces with riders crossing the finish line in one’s, with the last man over 45 minutes down.

Tour of Turkey Stage 3 Result:
1. Ivailo Gabrovski (Bul) Konya Torku Seker Spor in 4:21:09
2. Alexandr Dyachenko (Kaz) Astana at 1:29
3. Danail Andonov Petrov (Bul) Caja Rural at 1:32
4. Adrian Palomares Villaplana (Spa) Andalucia at 1:34
5. Romain Bardet (Fra) Ag2r-La Mondiale 0:01:51
6. Alexander Efimkin (Rus) Team Type 1-Sanofi at 2:13
7. Florian Guillou (Fra) Bretagne-Schuller at 2:19
8. Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:38
9. Michal Golas (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick-Step at 2:52
10. William Routley (Can) Spidertech Powered By C10 at 2:55.

Tour of Turkey Overall After Stage 3:
1. Ivailo Gabrovski (Bul) Konya Torku Seker Spor in 10:43:04
2. Alexandr Dyachenko (Kaz) Astana at 1:33
3. Danail Andonov Petrov (Bul) Caja Rural at 1:38
4. Adrian Palomares Villaplana (Spa) Andalucia at 1:44
5. Romain Bardet (Fra) Ag2r-La Mondiale at 2:01
6. Alexander Efimkin (Rus) Team Type 1-Sanofi at 2:23
7. Florian Guillou (Fra) Bretagne-Schuller at 2:29
8. Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:48
9. Michal Golas (Pol) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 3:02
10. William Routley (Can) Spidertech Powered By C10 at 3:05.

Stage 3:

Tour of Turkey: 3. Etap por EurosportTurkiye

Mark Renshaw (Rabobank) came out the winner in a battle of the Australians as he beat Matt Goss (GreenEdge) in the bunch sprint finish of Stage 4 in Marmaris after 132 kilometres. It was a special day for the Australians as today (Wednesday) is ANZAC day. Ivailo Gabrovski (Konya Torku Seker Spor) kept hold of the overall.

Tour of Turkey Stage 4 Result:
1. Mark Renshaw (Aus) Rabobank in 3:14:01
2. Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Greenedge
3. Daniele Colli (Ita) Team Type 1-Sanofi
4. Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Unitedhealthcare
5. Davide Vigano (Ita) Lampre-ISD
6. Alexey Tsatevitch (Rus) Katusha
7. Florian Vachon (Fra) Bretagne-Schuller
8. James Van Landschoot (Bel) Accent Jobs-Willems Veranda’s
9. Lucas Sebastien Haedo (Arg) Saxo Bank
10. Sйbastien Turgot (Fra) Europcar.

Tour of Turkey Overall Afer Stage 4:
1. Ivaпlo Gabrovski (Bul) Konya Torku Seker Spor in 13:57:05
2. Alexandr Dyachenko (Kaz) Astana at 1:33
3. Danail Andonov Petrov (Bul) Caja Rural at 1:38
4. Adrian Palomares Villaplana (Spa) Andalucia at 1:44
5. Romain Bardet (Fra) Ag2r-La Mondiale at 2:01
6. Alexander Efimkin (Rus) Team Type 1-Sanofi at 2:23
7. Florian Guillou (Fra) Bretagne-Schuller AT 2:29
8. Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Colnago-CSF Inox at 2:48
9. Michal Golas (Pol) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step at 3:02
10. William Routley (Can) Spidertech Powered By C10 at 3:05.

Stage 4:

Vacansoleil-DCM for the Giro d’Italia
The Dutch WorldTour team Vacansoleil-DCM has announced its team for the up and coming Italian Tour starting in Denmark in May. Team DS; Jean-Paul van Poppel said; “We have got a sprinter, time trial specialists, climbers and possible general classification riders, a real team to go for a stage win which is hopefully able to continue the growth the team showed in 2012 stage races.” The team is multi-national with two Italians and one each from; Holland, Belgium, Austria, Poland, Uzbekistan, Sweden and France, but no place for Martin Mortensen who is from the start town of Herning in Denmark.

Martijn Keizer (Holland),
Thomas De Gendt (Belgium),
Mirko Selvaggi (Italy),
Matteo Carrara (Italy),
Stefan Denifl (Austria),
Tomasz Marczynski (Poland),
Sergey Lagutin (Uzbekistan),
Gustav-Erik Larsson (Sweden),
Romain Feillu (France).

GreenEdge for the Giro d’Italia
The successful Australian GreenEdge team have announced eight riders of the nine who will be lining-up in Herning, Denmark on the 5th of May for the first stage of the 2012 Giro d’Italia. The ninth member is expected to be Tomas Vaitkus.

Matthew Goss,
Daryl Impey,
Jens Keukeleire,
Jack Bobridge,
Fumiyuki Beppu,
Cameron Meyer,
Christian Meier,
Svein Tuft.

Giro ProMo video:

Robbie McEwen’s Last Race
The Amgen Tour of California in May will be GreenEdge sprinter Robbie McEwen’s last race with the Pro peloton, he announced through the Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad. After a very successful career including the Tour de France green jersey three times and a dozen stage wins in both the Tour and the Giro d’Italia, add to that five wins in Paris-Brussels, the Vattenfall Classic, Grote Scheldeprijs, Etoile de Bessиges, the Circuit Franco-Belge and stage wins in just about every stage race on the calendar.

The best of Robbie:

The 2012 TNA Westside Cycling Classic presented by Shape Properties & Mosaic Homes Registration Is Now Live!
PreFondo Back Again, and BC Masters Championship Added To Schedule.

Press Release: Registration is now live for the 2012 TNA Westside Cycling Classic presented by Shape Properties and Mosaic Homes! Taking place on Sunday, June 10, the TNA Westside Cycling Classic enters its eighth year of bringing the excitement of road cycling to the streets of Vancouver, as well as some new additions this 2012.

Returning to the scenic route surrounding Pacific Spirit Park near the University of British Columbia, the race will again be set against a spectacular backdrop of the Pacific Ocean and the Coastal Mountains and will attract racers from around the Pacific Northwest and Canada anxious to compete in one of Canada’s premier cycling events.

Participants will again enjoy racing on completely closed roads and benefit from full neutral support provided by The Bike Gallery (www.vancouverbikegallery.com).

Set on the edge of Point Grey Village and the University of British Columbia, our Expo Village and Kids Zone will provide something for everyone – riders, friends, families, and spectators.

NEW for 2012
BC Masters Championship: The TNA Westside Cycling Classic is proud to be designated as the BC Masters Championship Race.

New Charity Partner: The TNA Westside Cycling Classic is excited to announce a new charity partner – Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, which provides specialized pediatric palliative care for children living with a life-threatening illness and support for their families throughout British Columbia. Donations are accepted during registration, setting up a personalized donations page, or in person at the event.

Returning for 2012
PreFondo Ride: The PreFondo Ride is sure to attract a great deal of interest for people preparing to ride one of the many GranFondo or Charity Rides this year. “The PreFondo event is the perfect training for group riding on safe and closed roads,” explained Event Director Jonathan Wornell. “There are many great events that are encouraging new riders, some who may be intimidated by riding in a large group. We wanted to create something that would be accessible and which could be ridden with team mates, friends or family in preparation for the bigger events.”

Registration for the PreFondo event is limited so riders are encouraged to sign up early.

On line registration closes on June 6 11:59 pm, after which time registration and package pick up will be at The Bike Gallery (4433 West 10th Ave) 2pm – 4pm Saturday June 9th (no credit card payment available). Early Bird pricing is available until May 13th 11:59pm.

Full details and registration is now live at: www.westsidecyclingclassic.com.

Il Lombardia to Honour Felice Gimondi with Bergamo Start
Press Release: The 2012 edition of Il Lombardia on Saturday 29 September will honour former Italian cycling champion Felice Gimondi by starting in his hometown of Bergamo on the day of his 70th birthday.

“To honour Gimondi and celebrate his birthday, I asked the organisers RCS Sport/La Gazzetta dello Sport to hold the start of Il Lombardia in Bergamo” the governor of the Lombardy Region Roberto Formigoni said.

Mauro Vegni –the technical director of the Il Lombardia said: “We are happy to take up the request from the Governor of Lombardy and were convinced Felice and Bergamo will be happy to welcome the start of a great classic like Il Lombardia.”

The 2012 Il Lombardia is the 106th edition of the end of season classic and will come just a week after the world road race championships in the Netherlands.

In 2011 Swiss rider Oliver Zaugg of Team Leopard Trek won the race with a solo attack close to the finish in Como.

This is Gimondi winning the Worlds road race in Barcelona 1973:

Vuelta a Espaсa 2012. Teams invited by the organization
Press Release: Unipublic announce the teams that have been selected to participate in Vuelta a Espaсa 2012 that will take place from 18th August to 9th September and begin in Pamplona with a team time trial.

2012 UCI ProTeams:
AG2R La Mondiale (Fra),
Astana Pro Team (Kaz),
BMC Racing Team (USA),
Euskaltel – Euskadi (Esp),
FDJ – Big Mat (Fra),
Garmin – Barracuda (USA),
Greenedge Cycling Team (Aus),
Katusha Team (Rus),
Lampre – ISD (Ita),
Liquigas – Cannondale (Ita),
Lotto Belisol Team (Bel),
Movistar Team (Esp),
Omega Pharma – Quickstep (Bel),
Rabobank Cycling Team (Ned),
Radioshack – Nissan (Lux),
Sky Procycling (Gbr),
Team Saxo Bank (Den),
Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling Team (Ned).

Besides these, Unipublic has invited other four teams selected from all nominations to participate in the Vuelta a Espaсa 2012:
Andalucia (Esp),
Caja Rural (Esp),
Cofidis, le crйdit en ligne (Fra),
Team Argos – Shimano (Hol).

Vuelta ProMo for 2001:

Javi Moreno set to Defend Title in Asturias for Movistar
Press Release: The recent winner of the overall at Vuelta a Castilla y Leуn; Javi Moreno will attempt to repeat his success in the Vuelta a Asturias stage race which he won last year, with three stages leading to the decisive mountain stage to the Naranco on Sunday

Movistar Team will wear the number 1 during the 56th edition of the Vuelta a Asturias starting in Oviedo on Friday, as the winner from last year, Javi Moreno, leads the telephone squad in the Spanish three-day, four-stage event, including a double stage on Saturday with a 14-km individual time trial in Piedras Blancas in the evening plus the Subida al Naranco on Sunday, closing the race.

Moreno, coming to Asturias after his overall victory in Castilla y Leуn and the crash that ruined his chances to shine in the Vuelta a la Rioja last sunday, will be joined by Beсat Intxausti, David Lуpez, Marzio Bruseghin, Ivбn Gutiйrrez, Enrique Sanz, Ignatas Konovalovas and Jesъs Herrada, the team will be directed by Josй Luis Jaimerena.

Vuelta a Asturias from 1997:

69th Tour de Pologne Presented in Warsaw
From July 10 to 16 2012, with 7 stages, 25 teams and 200 riders starting.

Press Release: Today, Wednesday April 25th, in the centre of Warsaw, the Hotel Marriott offered a magnificent backdrop for the official presentation of the 69th Tour de Pologne. It promises to be a particularly interesting, thrilling edition of the Polish stage race, which this year is scheduled from July 10th to the 16th, with 7 stages from Karpacz to Krakow for a total of 1234.7 kilometres.
Once again this year, the Tour de Pologne, the most important race in Eastern Europe, will join the other major season races on the UCI World Tour calendar, the “A-series” of cycling, on which it has already been confirmed for the next four editions as well.

“In addition to reaffirming itself as an important event in international summer cycling, this year the Tour de Pologne will expand its prestige even further; since it will be held just a few days before the Olympics, the roads of Poland will become an essential passage for those riders who are strongly focused on the 2012 London games,” explains the Director for the Tour de Pologne Czeslaw Lang. “It is for this very reason that we have designed the 2012 Tour de Pologne trying to make the race even more spectacular, both for the public as well as the riders, who won’t only be here to win but will also want to prepare their legs as best as possible for the Olympics. It all starts off from Karpacz, a historical town in the Tour de Pologne which is back after a few years off the schedule with an immediately gruelling stage on a route suited to climbers. Then, the second stage with arrival in Opole will be very long – almost 240 km, with a hilly course suited to attackers. The third fraction arriving in Cieszyn will also be challenging and tense (note: this stage also features the traditional border crossing into the Czech Republic). After these first three hard days there will be a more relaxing stage, if you can call it that, suited to the fast wheels in the group, the fourth portion arriving in Katowice. This will be followed by another two important stages, where the climbs will once again loom large; the fifth and sixth stages will arrive respectively in Zakopane and Bukovina Tatrzanska, the reigning stage for 2012; both stages will be fundamental for the final classification before the conclusive showcase in Krakow.”

THE JERSEYS, THE CLASSIFICATIONS AND THE SPONSORS. The jerseys for the 2012 Tour de Pologne were also modelled on the stage during the presentation. The leader of the race will wear the yellow jersey powered by Skandia, which again this year is confirmed as the main sponsor for the Tour de Pologne. The cyclamen Tauron jersey will be worn by the leader in the classification for the mountain grand prix while the red Fiat jersey will be donned by the most combative rider in the peloton. And let’s not forget Bank BGŻ, which as always will award a daily prize to all the winners of the stage. Also in 2012, after the brilliant collaboration in the last editions, the brand Trentino Marketing (which represents the tourism trademark for the Italian region of Trentino) has also become an Official Sponsor of the Polish stage race, further evidence of growing media interest that the race is stirring even beyond national borders.

THE TEAMS AT THE START. As far as participation is concerned, this promises to be a record edition. There will be 25 teams at the starting line for a total of 200 riders, something that has never happened before at the Tour de Pologne, to underscore the expansion, even from a technical and sporting perspective, that the race is enjoying from one edition to the next. These teams will bring to the Tour de Pologne riders of the highest level with the double objective of winning and doing well on the roads in Poland, thus accruing important points for the World Tour classification, but also of preparing for the Olympics in the best way possible.
Following is a list of the teams who have been announced at the start:
Ag2r – La Mondiale, Astana Pro Team, BMC Racing Team, Euskaltel – Euskadi, FDJ – BigMat, Garmin – Barracuda, GreenEDGE Cycling Team, Katusha Team, Lampre – ISD, Liquigas – Cannondale, Lotto – Belisol Team, Movistar, Omega Pharma – Quick Step Cycling Team, Rabobank, RadioShack – Nissan, Sky Procycling, Team Saxo Bank, Vacansoleil – DCM Pro Cycling, Polska National Team, Argos Shimano, Caja Rural, Colnago-Csf Inox, Farnese Vini – Selle Italia, Team Type1-Sanofi, Utensilnord Named.

10/07, I stage, Golebiewski Karpacz – Jelenia Gora, km 179,5 (mountains, difficulty ••••)
11/07, II stage, Walbrzych – Opole, km 239,4 (difficulty ••)
12/07, III stage, Kedzierzyn-Kozle – Cieszyn, km 201,7 (difficulty •••)
13/07, IV stage, Bedzin – Katowice, km 127,8 (difficulty •)
14/07, V, stage, Rabka-Zdroj – Zakopane, km 163,1 (mountains, difficulty ••••)
15/07, VI stage, Bukowina Terma Hotel spa – Bukowina Tatrzanska, km 191,8 (mountains, difficulty •••••)
16/07, VII stage, Krakow – Krakow, km 131,4 (flatland, difficulty •)

Routes and altimetry: www.tourdepologne.pl.

Last year’s Tour de Pologne:

Rapha Condor Sharp ‘12: The story so far – Team Update
Press Release: After taking the bold decision to change the focus of the Rapha Condor Sharp team at the end of a highly successful 2011, the 2012 season so far has been a very different affair for the “men in black.”

Rapha Condor Sharp’s new recruits have had a mixed introduction into the rigours of top-level British racing, in one of the most hard fought spring campaigns the UK calendar has seen. The young riders have also been busy gaining worthy international experience in Asian and European racing.

Team manager John Herety has been happy with the progress shown, not only by his young contingent, but also by his older riders.

“From the very first training camp in Lanzarote, I knew we were working with a very different group of riders than in previous seasons. I have been in charge of mature guys of 27 or 28 for most of the time I have been managing domestically. Starting work with guys straight out of the Junior ranks was very different, even just in terms of their personalities and what they know about the sport.

“What I was really pleased to see by the time the second camp came around, was that the riders who I had selected to stay on the team as mentors gelled really well with the young guys, and showed themselves to be fantastic in these positions.”

Indeed, team veterans Dean Downing and James McCallum have taken well to their roles mentoring the young riders in the team, creating a constructive working environment that was clearly visible for all to see in Benidorm.

The team’s young riders also received a huge boost when two of their senior teammates, Ed Clancy and Andy Tennant, became World Champions in the team pursuit in Melbourne in March, a hugely inspiring achievement for the entire team.

The racing however has understandably been a bigger challenge to the new squad. While the team’s race calendar remains similar to previous years, the riders and manager have been looking at events such as the Tour of Normandy and the Tour of Taiwan very much as learning experiences.

“Internationally, I have been pleased with all the young guys performances. In Taiwan, Felix English and Luke Mellor (until he crashed out) both impressed me with their will to race against competition from World Tour teams. They also started to learn what it is to suffer on a bike properly.

“On the first day, Felix raced out of his skin, and by the third day he really paid for his efforts with a tough time on the bike. But he came through, and that is the kind of thing that I need to see in riders: a will to race.”

Thanks to their efforts racing for Rapha Condor Sharp, no less than three of the team’s riders were selected to represent their respective nations in three rounds of the U23 Nations Cup in March. Ben Grenda’s 5th place in the Cote Picardie was the highlight of this. His compatriots, Felix English and Chris Jennings, also acquitted themselves well with aggressive performances against the top U23 competition in Europe. All three of these riders are in the frame for World Championship selection later in the year.

Domestically the team has shown great form, as riders such as English and Handley have helped take the win tally to 7 victories in smaller events. The big win however remains elusive, despite two close second places for Ben Grenda and Richard Handley at the two opening rounds of the Premier Calendar.

“Our results are obviously very different this year, but realistically in the UK the pool of riders is quite small, so there can only ever be a certain number of top guys who are at their racing peak. In many ways it is a monopoly that is quite easy to create. In previous years, we have done this ourselves and we’ve been winning everything going, but we took that as far as we wanted to.

“Now we have a crop of young guys who are just behind the top winners, and it is genuinely exciting to see them coming up and snapping at the heels of the guys who are in their prime.

“Watching a guy like Mike Cuming or Rich Handley give everything they can and making efforts to win races- even if they come up short to a more developed rider, is something we know is part of the process. It isn’t the same success that we have coveted previously, but to stay vital, you have to keep challenging yourself.”

While the team’s legacy continues to be the biggest rival for the current crop of Rapha Condor Sharp riders, Herety is also in no doubt that the times will undoubtedly change.

“If you look about the UK peloton, there are plenty of riders that have been through this team who are now at the top of the sport domestically. I have no doubt that in time, the riders we have now can potentially take themselves to that level, and even beyond. It has been a different, but very exciting start.

Coll Rapha Condor Sharp team training in Spain video here on Vimeo.

Human Race Joins Forces with Participate Sport to Form UK’s Largest Mass Participation Events Company
Press Release:Two leading multi-sport, mass participation events companies will join forces to create the UK’s largest and most diverse mass participation events company; owning and delivering over 55 events in triathlon, cycling, running, duathlon, aquathlon and open water swimming for over 100,000 participants of all abilities and ages.

Participate Sport and Human Race have merged to combine a highly prestigious portfolio of events including the Toshiba Windsor Triathlon, Cycletta, the Eton SuperSprint Triathlons, Festival of Sport Cornwall, Wiggle Dragon Ride, Etape Cymru, Off Road Winter Series, the Speedo Open Water Swim Series and a partnership with the British 10k Run powered by Nike+.

The merged event portfolio now includes 16 triathlons, nine cycling events, 11 running events, 10 open water swims, seven kid’s events and one Festival of Sport. These events bring together an active community of over 100,000 people taking part in sporting events for reasons ranging from fitness, competition, charity, health, fun or to simply finish. The participants vary from nervous first timers from 8 to 80 through to World Champions. Collectively, the events raise millions of pounds for hundreds of charities.

The two companies will unite under the highly esteemed brand name, Human Race, with an ongoing focus of delivering world class sports events and utilising their combined expertise and personnel to deliver events designed to inspire people throughout Britain to be fit and active. Human Race will work with a great range of sponsors and charities to help augment the competitor experience, including; Toshiba, Nike, Nuffield Health, Speedo, Sky and Red Bull.

The new Human Race CEO, Nick Rusling, will head up the company. Rusling was formerly CEO at Participate Sport and was also MD at IMG Challenger World, the company behind the London Triathlon, Blenheim Triathlon, Etape Caledonia and Run to the Beat. John Lunt, Founder of Human Race will remain fully involved on a senior and a strategic day-to-day basis. Lunt has also been the Event Director for some of the major triathlons in the UK; the Commonwealth Games Triathlon in Manchester 2002, ITU World Cups in Salford and is currently the Sport Manager for Triathlon in Hyde Park this summer.

Nick Rusling said: “The mass participation industry has grown exponentially over the past decade and the opportunity to combine ambitions and passion with John Lunt and his great team is incredibly exciting. A new era under the Human Race brand will continue to inspire thousands more people to get fit, active and healthy through our events in what I believe is the most exciting time for participation sport in history.”

John Lunt said: “The combined strengths of two great event delivery companies brings together a number of exciting benefits for our valued customers; the athletes, sponsors and partners. I am looking forward to staying fully involved and committed to help ensure we keep our passion and focus on delivering great Human Race events.”

More information on Human Race is available at: https://www.humanrace.co.uk. https://www.humanrace.co.uk.

Claire House Children’s Hospice Returns as Charity Partner for Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride
Press Release: The Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride are delighted to announce that they will once again be partnering with the Claire House Children’s Hospice for the 2012 edition of the event, after raising over Ј20,000 for the children’s charity last year.

Now in its 19th year, the Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride will take place on the 8th July 2012. The event is expected to attract 3000 entrants and offers riders the rare opportunity to cycle through the Mersey Tunnel, which is usually closed to cyclists.

Riders have a choice of five routes, with the Wirral Circular, Chester-Liverpool, Liverpool-Chester routes all being 25 miles. The Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool route is 50 miles and the Liverpool Challenge, taking on Delamere Forest, is a challenging 90 miles.

The Claire House hospice provides respite, medical, end of life and bereavement care for children and young people from across Merseyside, Cheshire, North Wales, West Lancashire and the Isle of Man. By providing a home-from-home environment, Claire House allows children and young people to escape the limits of the medical conditions and spend time just being themselves.

With limited government funding, the hospice requires Ј6,500 every day to provide a first-class level of care. Being part of events such as the Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride are a vital part of the fundraising the hospice does to support each family for 17 nights every year.

Jayne Dixon, Senior Event Fundraiser for Claire House Children’s Hospice, said: “It’s not often I tell someone to ‘get on yer bike’, but for the Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride, I’ll make an exception!”

She continued: “This is such an amazing event and one Claire House is so proud to be a part of. It’s great fun too; not only are riders raising money to support families from across the area, they’re getting the opportunity to ride through the Mersey Tunnel. It’ll definitely be a day to remember.”
As an added incentive any Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool rider who chooses to raise money for Claire House and opens a Just Giving page before 15th May 2012 will be entered into a prize draw to win a Ј75 voucher from Global Bikes.

The Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool is organised by North West company Pennine Events. Founded in 2002, they have established themselves as a premium events company. With over 60 years collective events experience, the team specialises in delivering high-quality mass-participation cycling events, such as the multi-award winning Pedal for Scotland, Bradford City Run, Under and Over the Mersey, The Great Notts Bike Ride, as well as crowd management at the 2007 Tour de France.

Participants wishing to register for Liverpool-Chester-Liverpool Bike Ride and raise money for Claire House should visit: www.liverpoolchesterliverpool.com.

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