What's Cool In Road Cycling

News From the Cobbles

A short summary of developing stories from across Europe, provided by our newest corresdpondent – Alistair Hamilton.

The northern classics, although huge races and popular with fans all over the world, seem to be less popular with the Spanish teams than any other. This year , however,3 of 4 Div I. teams from Spain are entered – iBanesto, Kelme – Costa Blanca, and Once. Interestingly, Spanish cycling weekly META2MIL reported that no Spanish teams were entered, citing “the inexperience of the riders and the technical staff” as the reason.

The Italians are a different breed of latin-culture, the kind that just loves the hard races and bad weather of the north. So much so that the organizers of Paris-Roubaix have invited the team of Mario Cipollini Aqua e Sapone (that’s “water & soap” for you non Italian –speakers…). The organisers have had permision from UCI for 26 teams instead of the usual 25, specially for the Italien sprinter.

From Germany things dont look so good for Jan Ullrich, as the lesion on his knee is giving him more trouble and keeping him off the bike when he should be doing serious prep for the Giro & Tour. According to German television, he is doing ЁaquajoggingЁ which is the tipical exercise for athletes with lesion problems, you do the same exersise as normal but with the support of water. His Telekom team say he will be racing again in April, and that will be enough time before the Tour de France.

Also back in April will be Erik Dekker, it was confirmed by his director sportif, Theo de Roy, but to win the world cup would be a mission impossible. Dekker was just released from the hospital after surgery on his broken hip collected at Sanremo.

And finally, the type of virus that has Jalabert under the weather will last until after the classics. He was tired after Paris-Nice & for the last hour of Milan-San Remo before retiring, his next objective is now the tour.

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