TOP STORY: 2014 UCI Registered Teams
The UCI have announced the full 18 teams of the WorldTour, confirming the last 8 to join the top rung of cycle sport. At the same time the UCI confirmed Bretagne-Seche Environnement would be included in the 17 team that make up the UCI ProContinental group.
The 2014 WorldTour Teams are:
Ag2R-La Mondiale (Fra)
Belkin – Pro Cycling Team (Ned)
BMC Racing Team (USA)
Garmin Sharp (USA)
Omega Pharma – Quick Step Racing Team (Bel)
Team Katusha (Rus)
Team Tinkoff Saxo (Den)
Lotto Belisol (Bel)
Astana Pro Team (Kaz)
Lampre – Merida (Ita)
Movistar Team (Spa)
Orica GreenEdge (Aus)
Sky Procycling (GB)
Team Europcar (Fra)
Team Argos – Shimano (Ned)
Trek Factory Racing (USA).
The 2014ProContinental Teams are:
Androni Giocattoli (Ita)
Bardiani – CSF (Ita)
Caja Rural – Seguros RGA (Spa)
CCC Polsat Polkowice (Pol)
Cofidis, Solutions Crédits (Fra)
Drapac Professional Cycling (Aus)
IAM Cycling (Swi)
MTN – Qhubeka (RSA)
Team NetApp – Endura (Ger)
Team Novo Nordisk (USA)
Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise (Bel)
UnitedHealthcare Professional Cycling Team (USA)
Wanty – Groupe Gobert (Bel)
Yellow Fluo (Ita)
Bretagne – Seche Environnement (Fra).
No real surprises there, but you have to wonder what questions were asked of the Italian teams; Lampre-Marida and Yellow Fluo due to their doping past. Last year when the Yellow Fluo team were known as Vini Fantini-Selle Italia, they had Mauro Santambrogio and Danilo Di Luca riding for them and get caught doping at the Giro d’Italia. Both riders had a past, but the team signed them, even if, as the team management claim, that Di Luca was pushed on them by the sponsor, they were still in the team for the biggest event on the Italian calendar. The Lampre case is a little more complicated and long running and is due to the Mantova based doping case. 27 people are implicated in the case, including 15 riders who rode, or still ride for Lampre. More importantly; team manager Giuseppe Saronni and directeur sportif’s Maurizio Piovani and Fabrizio Bontempi are also charged in the same case of breaking the Italian anti-doping laws, some have been accused of working together to “procure, supply and favour the use of doping products that were justified by medical needs and were taken to alter physical performance of the Lampre riders.”
Good news is the sight of Europcar in the WorldTour list. As team manager Jean-René Bernaudeau told L’Équipe: “We won’t need to wait for wildcards anymore, which above all makes me happy for my riders. They’re the ones I’m thinking of. We won 26 races this year, we dominated the second division and this promotion to the WorldTour is a reward for their efforts and that fills me with pride.”
No Tour de France for ‘Purito’ in 2014
According to Katusha team manager; Viatcheslav Ekimov their star rider Joaquim ‘Purito’ Rodriguez will miss this year’s Tour de France and concentrate on the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España. The Tour course does not suit the slight Spaniard due to the cobbles, he told R-sport: “The route in the north of France is the same as Paris-Roubaix and its not suitable for him.” Rodriguez will aim to peak in the Giro d’Italia, the Ardennes Classics and then the Vuelta a España. As Ekimov said: “We will fight for the top places in the overall in those two races: Giro and Vuelta.”
The best of ‘Purito’:
MTN-Qhubeka for 2014
Africa’s ProContinental MTN-Qhubeka team have announced their line-up for next year. Top signings for 2014 are John-Lee Augustyn and Linus Gerdemann, plus Daniel Teklehaimanot from Orica-GreenEdge and Merhawi Kudus from Bretagne-Séché Environnement.
Team Principal, Douglas Ryder, reflected on the success the team achieved this year and looked to the future: “We ended 2013 as the team with the second most victories from all Professional Continental teams. It’s a remarkable achievement in our first year in this division. The challenge now is to keep being innovative and improve our high performance culture in the team. We’ve assembled a group of athletes that we’re very excited about and are building our season around a grand tour debut,” Ryder added.
The team has been vocal about going to one of world cycling’s grand tours and is targeting the Giro d’Italia. It launched an online campaign last week called #GetAfricaToTheGiro, urging supporters to help increase its social media numbers and share the team’s message.
“The last few weeks has been quite nice to bond with the team,” said new addition to the team, John-Lee Augustyn. “It’s nice to see the different cultures. The launch was really nice to get to know some of the new sponsors and finally reveal the new kit. The #GetAfricaToTheGiro campaign with the pink hands was amazing to see in person for everyone and there’s so much excitement around the team.
“I’ve been on a few professional teams and from what I have seen in the sport, this team is so different. It’s so professional and it usually takes a year or two for a new team to establish itself but the team has had an incredible 2013 and there’s no reason why we can’t reach our goals for 2014. We’ve got an incredible roster and I am looking forward to the next few years,” Augustyn concluded.
The team will find out early next year whether it will receive a wildcard to the Giro d’Italia. Should this happen, it will be a historic event as a team from the African continent has never before participated in a grand tour.
2013 MTN-Qhubeka Roster:
Linus Gerdemann (GER), John-Lee Augustyn (RSA), Merhawi Kudus (ERI), Daniel Teklhaimanot (ERI), Gerald Ciolek (GER), Songezo Jim (RSA), Jay Thomson (RSA), Jacques Janse van Rensburg (RSA), Ignatas Konovalovas (LIT), Martin Wesemann (RSA), Kristian Sbaragli (ITA), Sergio Pardilla (ESP), Louis Meintjes (RSA), Tsgabu Grmay (ETH), Johann van Zyl (RSA), Andreas Stauff (GER), Martin Reimer (GER), Youcef Reguigui (ALG), Ferekalsi Debesay (ERI), Adrien Niyonshuti (RWA), Meron Russom (ERI), Jani Tewelde (ERI), Bradley Potgieter (RSA), Dennis van Niekerk (RSA) and Jaco Venter (RSA).
Antón to Movistar for 2 Years
Basque rider to strengthen the solid Movistar Team 2014 project with proven talent in the mountains, victorious in some of the most prestigious stage races in the world. The Movistar Team rounds off its powerful 2014 roster as it adds Igor Antón, who joins Eusebio Unzué’s squad after a long career (nine years) in the ranks of Euskaltel-Euskadi. The Basque rider, one of the most talented climbers in the pro scene, will try to push his career to higher summits after notorious success in the most important competitions in the world.
One stage in the Giro d’Italia; the Queen stage from the 2010 edition atop the Monte Zoncolan, four victories in the Vuelta a España; Calar Alto (2006), Valdepeñas de Jaén and Pal (2010), and Bilbao (2011), plus wins in the hardest stages of both Romandie; Morgins (2007) and the Tour de Suisse; Flumserberg (2008) illuminate Antón’s palmares. The Spaniard is determined to be in the spotlight again for the next two seasons he’ll spend in Movistar Team colours.
Thanks to the Movistar team for Photo and info.
No Team for Pellizotti!
The Astana team have announced that the contract between them and Franco Pellizotti was never finalised and so the Italian will not be with the team in 2014. Team manager Alexandr Vinokurov announced via the Astana web site: “It’s with some sadness and a heavy heart that we will not be racing with Franco Pellizotti next year.” He added that “Negotiations with Pellizotti have always been optimistic and forthright, but in the end we agreed that we could not go forward with a contract to race with Astana Pro Team in 2014.” Pellizotti is not allowed to ride for a team signed up to the MPCC (Mouvement pour un cyclisme crédible) agreement and Astana had said they would not race him until after the 1st of May, although that is all pointless now. Gianni Savio, the manager of Pellizotti’s previous team; Androni Giocattoli-Venzuela, has said if he can find the money, Pellizotti would be welcomed back.
Pellizotti wins the Italian National championships:
Trek team for the Tour Down Under
The new Trek Factory Team are sending Jens Voigt to Australia for his eleventh Tour Down Under along with first time WorldTour rider; Calvin Watson. Voigt said: “Tour Down Under has almost become like a ritual for me. Adelaide was the starting point of every season in the recent past. As it looks like 2014 will be my last season, it’s going to be extra special. I’ll start my ‘farewell tour’ at the TDU. I’m really looking forward to racing there again and meeting with the fans in Australia, who are all very enthusiastic about cycling.” The Van Poppel brother’s, Fränk Schleck, Didier and Felline join them in Australia from 19th to 26th January.
Trek Team Line-up for the TDU:
Laurent Didier (Lux), Fabio Felline (Ita), Fränk Schleck (Lux), Boy Van Poppel (Ned), Danny Van Poppel (Ned), Jens Voigt (Ger) and Calvin Watson (Aus).
Jens Voigt by Trek Bikes:
2014 Dubai Tour
The route of the Tour of Dubai was announced on Tuesday by the organisers RCS Sport (Giro d’Italia organisers) and the Dubai Sports Council. The race starts on Wednesday the 5th of February with a 10 kilometre time trial in Dubai city. Stage 2 is 122 kilometres through the desert to finish in the Palm Jumeirah archipelago resort. Stage 3 is 162 kilometres to Hatta and the final stage is 124 kilometres long, passing the highest building in the World. All four stages start at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
The organisers say that Mark Cavendish, Fabian Cancellara, Marcel Kittel and Peter Sagan will start in Dubai amongst 11 ProTeams, 3 teams from the UCI Asia Tour and the UAE National team and the locally sponsored Dubai Sky Drive team.
Documentary THE OUTSIDER: Graeme Obree’s Story
Press Release: We have just completed the filming of a documentary covering two years in the life of twice world record holder and twice world champion, cyclist icon Graeme Obree. It began in his kitchen in Saltcoats, Ayrshire in 2011 and just ended in September 2013 in the mountains of Nevada, USA.
We filmed at least 200 hours of material but we now require help in raising the funds to finish the project! We have launched a KICKSTARTER campaign to raise £20,000 to cover the cost of a craft editor, and the editing suite he will use, the sound mix, the completion of the final big screen version, colour corrected with titles and graphics as well as the master for the streams, downloads and DVD’s.
HERE IS THE LINK (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/369066676/the-outsider-graeme-obrees-story-in-his-own-words)
We are asking everyone who share interest in cycling to please help us spread the word about this KICKSTARTER campaign. We are passionate and we would love to be able to present a complete DVD for all the fans out there.
Beercycling Announces the “Ardennes Trappist Challenge”
Press Release: Fresh off of another successful touring season, Beercycling.com is announcing new expanded offerings for 2014. This will be their fourth year providing beer and cycling-themed tours in Belgium and the Netherlands, two of the biggest beer destinations in Europe. In addition to their extremely popular guided tours of northern Belgium (Flanders) and western Holland, the growing company is now offering excursions into French-speaking southern Belgium (Wallonia). The highlight and theme of these adventurous 8-Day tours will be cycling to historic Trappist Monasteries.
“For many beer connoisseurs Trappist beer is considered the Holy Grail,” says Henk Wesselink, local European tour guide with Beercycling. “Cycling straight to the source where the monks perform their beer-making magic will be on par with taking a religious pilgrimage, just with a tad more drinking,” he jokingly adds.
The tour will cater towards advanced cyclists as riders will be exploring the “Ardennes” forest, the hilly section of Belgium. For their physical efforts they will be rewarded with outstanding scenic vistas and samplings of the finest beer in the world. In addition to experiencing the Trappist monasteries producing the legendary Rochefort, Chimay, and Orval ales, riders will also get to visit Fantome, La Chouffe, Interpol, Brasserie de Bastogne, Brasserie Bouillon, and Cantillon along the 8-Day route. Included in trip costs are a local guide, B&B-style accommodations, daily breakfast/lunch, and use of a Beercycling assist van that will transport luggage and meals along the way. The initial set of “Ardennes Trappist Challenge” dates will run from July 18th to 25th, followed by a second tour from July 26th to August 2nd, 2014. A full itinerary, including registration and pricing can be found here: www.beercycling.com/8-day-ardennes-trappist-challenge/
So, why would a tour with Beercycling be considered a bucket list item? “It’s the type of clients we attract,” states Evan Cohan, Beercycling.com founder. “Everyone on our tours loves great beer, traveling to new breweries and the outdoors. They know that beer tastes even better after physical exercise and that quality is more important than quantity. Riders immediately connect with one another and develop friendships over this common bond. So much, in fact, that we actually had two riders meet on a tour, fall in love, get married, and return for a second tour on their honeymoon! That’s a big honor for us, and really makes us guides love our jobs.” More stories can be found here: www.beercycling.com/beercycling-rider-testimonials/
Beercycling’s other major offerings for 2014 that are geared towards beginning cyclists include the “10-Day Flanders Adventure” and the “10-Day Amsterdam to Brussels Endeavor” tours. They also offer an abridged version of each, the “4-Day Belgium Sampler” and the “4-Day Taste of Holland” that are available on demand or for self-guided groups. A full list of all 2014 tour dates can be found here: www.beercycling.com/tour-dates/
For more information about Beercycling, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.beercycling.com. You can follow along with the riders during each tour on Facebook (www.facebook.com/beercycling), Instagram (www.instagram.com/beercycling) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/beercycling).
The Edge Of Traction & Nerve
“If there was more spin or less spin that was needed to land wholly on my neck and head […] I’d be dead for sure. I know it. I just know it,” says Martyn Ashton, mountain bike legend and YouTube star with more than 9 million views to his name for his Road Bike Party video – which saw him take the same bike that Sir Bradley Wiggins road to 2012 Tour de France victory, a Pinarello Dogma 2, and ride it well beyond the limits of what was commonly thought possible for a road bike. In a recent accident Martyn snapped his spine and very nearly saw him riding the big bike in the sky.
So here is Road Bike Party2:
Ghisallo Museum Fund-Raising
In the last months the Ghisallo Museum of Cycling, Italy, has closed due to a low budget. They have created a page for donations to help them at http://www.museodelghisallo.it/donazione.html
Let’s hope a great piece of cycling history can be kept for generations.
We received the video from Wes Bauer and this explanation: “In September I lost a friend in a cycling accident due to being hit from behind on a motorist. I made the goal to raise awareness and decrease the deaths of cyclists by motorist.
This was my response video to hopefully achieve that goal.”
The PEZ NEWSWIRE!
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