PezCycling News - What's Cool In Road Cycling : EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!

The weather in Italy has not been great, unlike California - But the racing has been hot. All the news, views and video from the Giro d'Italia and AToC. Doping has reared its ugly head again - Top Story. News from the OVO Energy Tour Series, riders out of the Giro (for different reasons), Tour of Britain to start in Scotland, Juan Sebastian Molano health tests, La Vuelta'19 song and video of Tom Dumoulin (now pointless) Giro d'Italia preparations. Monday EUROTRASH coffee time.



TOP STORY: The Good Old Days!
In the last few days there has been a spate of doping announcements, bringing back memories of years gone by of revelations like the 'Festina Affair' and 'Operación Puerto' etc... Now we have 'Operation Aderlass'.

The name Alessandro Petacchi was mentioned by La Gazzetta dello Sport, then Slovenians Kristijan Koren and Borut Bozic followed by the Croatian Kristijan Đurasek, all allegedly customers of the controversial doping doctor Schmidt.

32-year-old Koren was riding the Giro d'Italia with Bahrain Merida. Durasek was riding for UAE Team Emirates in the Tour of California. Bozic retired as a professional rider last season. During his career he rode for LPR, Collstrop, Vacansoleil, Astana, Cofidis and is now part of the Bahrain-Merida staff as a DS. The three all rode for the Slovenian continental team Perutnina Ptuj in the past, of which several former riders are currently serving a doping-related suspension.

'Operation Aderlass' concerns the activities of the German Mark Schmidt, who has a history as a team doctor at Gerolsteiner and has been accused of administering blood doping. In addition to cyclists, cross-country skiers are also involved. Austrian cross-country skier Max Hauke ​​was caught earlier this year during a blood transfusion, while the drip was still in his arm. Earlier this week, former rider Danilo Hondo admitted to being a customer of Schmidt. The Italian sports newspaper reports that there are still around ten cyclists involved, but that there are no big names.

The UCI and the riders teams announced that Koren and Durasek have been suspended for the time being (press releases below) because of their suspected use of the prohibited method - blood doping. Bozic and Petacchi have also been suspended. Pettachi rides UCI registered Gran Fondo events and could face a ban from those. If things go against Bozic he could lose his job as a DS and possibly have difficulty getting another team job, although some teams don't mind who they employ.

Alessandro Petacchi denies everything:




Giro d'Italia 2019
Elia Viviani (Deceuninck - Quick-Step) crossed the finish line first in Orbetello at the end of Stage 3 on Monday, but the Italian champion was relegated to the last place in the main peloton due to deviation from the chosen line during the final sprint. Colombia's Fernando Gaviria (UAE-Team Emirates) was declared the winner of the stage after Viviani was stripped of the victory. Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ) and Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) rounded out the podium. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) retained the overall lead after the third day. Gaviria said after the decision: "I am sorry for Elia, I would like to win differently."

The excitement of the day was a solo break by Sho Hatsuyama of Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizainè. The Japanese rider escaped early in the stage and built up a seven minute lead, but was caught with 75 kilometers to go. From then n the race was always going to come down to a sprint finish. Groupama-FDJ made the pace on the run-in, but it was stage 2 winner, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe), who made the first move. Ackermann hadn't considered the headwind which slowed his attack, allowing Viviani to come past with Gaviria at his side and Dèmare on his wheel. The Italian drifted to his left, but no one had the speed to come past him. After the finish Viviani was relegated by the race jury for "deviation from the chosen line during the final sprint."

This was the fifth Giro stage win for Fernando Gaviria after four in 2017, just as many as Elia Viviani. He's the Colombian with most stage wins ahead of Lucho Herrera and Nairo Quintana who have three each.

See more photos in the full PEZ Race Report HERE.



Stage winner and Points Competition leader, Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates): "This isn’t really how I wanted to win and that’s why I didn’t celebrate on the podium. In my view Viviani is the winner today. I don’t think he did it on purpose – he came straight out from Ackermann’s slipstream. This is the first time I’ve ‘won’ because of the relegation rule but I guess these things happen, especially in sprinting. Regardless of the result my team did a great job and I hope to repay them with a clear win as soon as possible."

3rd on the stage, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe): "I think that we did a good job, but in the end my timing didn’t work out and I went too early into the headwind. Given these circumstances, we can be happy with a third place. But there are still more stages to come, where we can hopefully put up a good fight."

Overall leader, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma): "We didn’t bother about the sprint. We just did our job and finish safely in the bunch. It was an easy stage. It was a long day with some wind but it finished well for us. I haven’t checked what it’ll be like tomorrow. I take it day by day. For sure the last week of the Giro will be tough and decisive. So far so good for me. I hope to stay healthy."

Solo break rider, Sho Hatsuyama (Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizanè): "I'm tired but happy. Today I went in the breakaway because the team wanted to be protagonist with an action. Yesterday it was time for my partner Damiano Cima, today it was up to me but I didn’t expect to find me alone. But I was supposed to attack and I did, as I did in the past. Certainly it was tiring but beautiful because everyone looked at me, the people on the roadside shouted my name, I knew that even from Japan they looked at me and also for the team it was important. I'm at my first big Giro, the goal is to get to Verona and do some other good action. But not tomorrow, tomorrow is time to recover some energy remaining in the group."

Giro d'Italia Stage 3 Result:
1. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates in 5:23:19
2. Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
3. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
4. Matteo Moschetti (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
5. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Dimension Data
6. Jakub Mareczko (Ita) CCC
7. Davide Cimolai (Ita) Israel Cycling Academy
8. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
9. Christian Knees (Ger) Ineos
10. Sacha Modolo (Ita) EF Education First.

Giro d'Italia Overall After Stage 3:
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 10:21:01
2. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:19
3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:00:23
4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana at 0:28
5. Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Sunweb
6. Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:33
7. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo at 0:39
8. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 0:40
9. Pello Bilbao (Spa) Astana at 0:42
10. Victor De La Parte (Spa) CCC at 0:45.

Stage 3:



Pre-stage 4 interviews:



Richard Carapaz (Movistar) claimed an unexpected stage victory on Stage 4 of the Giro on Tuesday. The stage looked tailor-made for punchy sprinters in Frascati, but two crashes made it a dramatic finale with Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) being the only top GC rider in the six-man front group at the end. The Slovenian extended his overall lead to 35 seconds over Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), 39 seconds over Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) and 44 seconds over Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana). Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) was the main victim of the crashes. He crossed the line with a deficit of 4:04.

The break of three built up a lead of 13 minutes, but: Damiano Cima (Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizane), Marco Frapporti (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec) and Mirco Maestri (Bardiani-CSF) were caught with 10 kilometers to go and it looked like the stage would be decided by a big bunch on the final rise to the line in Frascati.

The peloton was nervous on the final run-in and the inevitable big crash came 6 kilometers out. This allowed a small group of around a dozen riders to escape. There was three UAE Team Emirates riders, so they powered the group away for their man Diego Ulissi. Carapaz anticipated the sprint with a strong jump, only Caleb Ewan could get close to the Ecuadorian for second place.

This was the second stage win at the Giro for Richard Carapaz who claimed stage 8 to Montevergine di Mercogliano last year. To date he’s the only Ecuadorian to have won a stage of the Giro.

The full PEZ Race Report with more photos HERE.



Stage winner, Richard Carapaz (Movistar): "I'm just so emotional at this moment! I just can't feel happier. I had a different mentality heading into today's stage. It was such an unlucky finished yesterday. I just wanted to turn back the clock today, start from zero. And that's how it happened. We knew that such a long stage, with many little ascents, would suit us a bit better, but I wasn't really thinking about contesting the victory, never mind taking it. Our team's strategy today was just staying with the top contenders and having all team-mates taking care of Mikel and myself. Sadly, that crash split the bunch, Mikel and other team-mates were also involved later on, and the team told me to stay there at the front and give it a try if I could. I knew there were some fast legs into that group, yet I sought for my chance. With 600 meters to go, I saw an opportunity to launch a move that could stick, jumped away with my everything, and saw that I had a good distance, even if I had to push myself over the limit in the end because Ewan was coming back. It's such an emotional day for me, even more so after what we had to endure yesterday, following all the efforts in the last few months to come here in good condition. I'm now just thinking about everyone who supports us, me and the team, my loving family, my team, my country. I'm just so happy."

Overall leader, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma): "We did a nice job again with the team. It’s good to gain some time but I don’t know if it’s because of the crash. We all want to stay safe. I didn’t see any crash so I guess I was at the front, fighting and trying to avoid any unnecessary mishaps. I try to concentrate on the bike for the whole stage. We all do mistakes. It’s bad if someone’s mistake makes someone else crash."

2nd on the stage, Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal): "The three-rider breakaway was a perfect situation. They were granted quite an advantage but that wasn’t really a problem due to the 235 kilometers long stage. We know it would be a hectic finale but we stayed at the front almost all day. I heard some riders crashing behind me. That way, I was part of around twenty riders at the front. The goal was to start the final two kilometers at the front, which also succeeded. The group was reduced step by step and Tosh kept me in the perfect position. I saw Carapaz go at 500 meters from the line but at first, it was Team UAE that set the pace. With 300 meters to go I launched my sprint but eventually, I wasn’t able to pass him anymore. Today I once again proved that such finishes really suit me. As a sprinter, it is really hard to battle against better climbers like Ulissi, Roglič and Carapaz. Of course, I am disappointed because you not often get a chance to win a Grand Tour stage. Sunday I finished third, today second. Tomorrow, there’s a flat stage and I am convinced that I can once again battle for victory. It is only a pity that I wasn’t able to seize this opportunity. As a team we did great and unfortunately, that didn’t result in a win."

3rd on the stage and 5th overall, Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates): "When the crash occurred, I managed to be in the front of the group and to avoid being stopped. I was with Marcato and Conti and we tried to set a high pace, being aware that the final part of the course was not so steep, and that there still were sprinters such as Viviani, Demare, Ackermann and Ewan with us. Carapaz was perfect in seizing the time of his action, then Ewan’s sprint was very fast, so I was third. When Carapaz attacked, I waited for someone to react but no one did. Obviously I would have preferred to win, but considering that the final was not so demanding and that we did the best to make it difficult, I have no regrets."

4th on the stage, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe): "It was a super hard stage. It was hectic, everybody was nervous and it was dangerous due to the curves in the road. The guys kept me up front but then there was a crash and I believe one of our guys were also involved. We put the hammer down but in the end I didn't have the legs. But I think we can still be happy with the result today."

Giro d'Italia Stage 4 Result:
1. Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Movistar in 5:58:17
2. Caleb Ewan (Aus) Lotto Soudal
3. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
4. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:02
5. Florian Senechal (Fra) Deceuninck - Quick-Step
6. Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma
7. Valerio Conti (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
8. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana at 0:18
9. Arnaud Démare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
10. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott.

Giro d'Italia Overall After Stage 4:
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 18:19:20
2. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:35
3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 0:39
4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana at 0:44
5. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
6. Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:49
7. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo at 0:55
8. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 0:56
9. Bob Jungels (Lux) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 1:02
10. Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe at 1:06.

Stage 4:



Pascal Ackermann of Bora-Hansgrohe claimed his second stage win at the Giro d'Italia on a rain-soaked Stage 5 to Terracina. The young German out-sprinted Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates) and Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ). Due to adverse weather conditions, times taken with 10km to go. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) retained his lead.

Italian Prime minister Giuseppe Conte flagged off the race in Terracina and soon after Sunweb's Tom Dumoulin had to abandon due to his crash the previous day. The escape soon formed with Enrico Barbin and Umberto Orsini (Bardiani-CSF), Miguel Eduardo Florez (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec), Ivan Santaromita (Nippo Vini Fantini-Faizane) and Louis Vervaeke (Sunweb). Their chances of staying away was nil as the final part of the stage was flat. Once they were caught the sprinter teams took over. Groupama-FDJ was probably the strongest team, but with the twisty run-in and the wet conditions, no one could dominate. Gaviria made his move early and looked to have his second Giro'19 stage win in the bag, but the German champion, Ackermann, had that little bit more to push past for his second stage win.

This was the second Giro stage win for Pascal Ackermann, his fourth consecutive top 5 and Germany's 37th stage victory at the Corsa Rosa – the first one was by Herman Buse in 1932, also on May 15. Slovenia, like Kazakhstan, now has five Maglia Rosa. Each country has earned their tally with a single rider: Primoz Roglic and Alexandr Vinokourov.

PEZ Stage 5 Race Report HERE.



Stage winner and points leader, Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe): "Today was one of these days in which I wondered why am I a cyclist. We had to change clothes every 30 seconds or so. It was cold. My goal for my first Giro was always to get to Verona. I'm in a good shape and there are more sprints to come, plus the intermediate sprints if needed, but for sure I'll try and win the cyclamen jersey."

Overall leader, Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma): "It was the right decision to take the times 10km before the end. We always try to stay safe. We saw yesterday how much can be lost in a crash. Tom Dumoulin's abandonment doesn't change much for me. The only important thing for me is that our team stays focused and we do our job the best we can. Tomorrow, why not lose the Maglia Rosa? It looks like a good stage for the breakaway to succeed."

2nd on the stage, Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates): "Today the rain and the cold made the race demanding, and I was pretty tired in the approach of the final circuit. Despite this, I gave the best in the sprint and I almost hit the big target. The arrival was at the end of a very long straight, it seemed we could never reach it! Watching the sprint after the race, I started the sprint too early, I would start later if I could go back and repeat it."

4th on the stage, Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal): "It was difficult today, because we started uphill and it was really cold and wet. I just put more clothing on and tried to stay as warm as possible. The GC teams were not there to race through the dangerous corners. I think it was a good decision to stop the race there, but for the sprinters the race went on, so it did not make much of a difference for us. We were on the right hand side and suddenly, there was a big puddle. I think everyone who went through it, lost all their speed. That was with only 400 meters to go, so that was disappointing."

Giro d'Italia Stage 5 Result:
1. Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe in 3:27:05
2. Fernando Gaviria (Col) UAE Team Emirates
3. Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
4. Caleb Ewan (Aus) Lotto Soudal
5. Matteo Moschetti (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
6. Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension Data
7. Paolo Simion (Ita) Bardiani-CSF
8. Jenthe Biermans (Bel) Katusha-Alpecin
9. Giovanni Lonardi (Ita) Nippo-Vini Fantini-Faizane
10. Manuel Belletti (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec.

Giro d'Italia Overall After Stage 5:
1. Primoz Roglic (Slo) Jumbo-Visma in 19:46:25
2. Simon Yates (GB) Mitchelton-Scott at 0:35
3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 0:39
4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col) Astana at 0:44
5. Diego Ulissi (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
6. Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:49
7. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo at 0:55
8. Damiano Caruso (Ita) Bahrain-Merida at 0:56
9. Bob Jungels (Lux) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 1:02
10. Davide Formolo (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe at 1:06.

Stage 5:




AMGEN Tour of California 2019
Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck - Quick-Step) dazzled on the gruesome Stage 2 of the Tour of California – his first race since concluding a superb Spring Classics campaign which saw him take a richly-deserved runner-up place at Ronde van Vlaanderen – powering to a highly-impressive victory that catapulted him onto the overall podium.

Coming from a land of ice and snow, from the midnight sun where the hot springs flow, the 24-year-old netted Denmark’s first success at the WorldTour race at the end of a savage and punishing day, one of the toughest in the competition’s history, which packed in six classified ascents and over 4000 vertical meters that mercilessly shattered the peloton.

That didn’t stop Asgreen from constantly animating the 215km-long stage, going on the attack and forcing an important selection, while at the same time displaying the same remarkable grit that has led the Wolfpack over the years to a plethora of memorable wins, to which the one on South Lake Tahoe was added on Monday afternoon. Despite not sparing any energy when it came to sharing pulls at the front of the reduced lead group, Asgreen was there when the decisive selection was made and just four riders were left to fight for victory, inside three kilometers to go.

On paper, Kasper wasn’t the fastest sprinter in that group, but the young Dane showed the same composure and ability to make the right choice under pressure and measured his effort perfectly on the uphill drag, delivering a strong acceleration and holding off the likes of Tejay van Garderen (EF Education First) and Gianni Moscon (Ineos). Va Garderen's second place moved him into the overall lead by 6 seconds from Moscon and 7 from Asgreen.

More from stage 2 HERE.



Stage winner, Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck - Quick-Step): "It’s my first pro win and I can’t tell you how huge this is for me, especially as it came at World Tour level and on this brutal stage. I had a free role from the squad, and honestly, I was hoping to notch up a good result, but this is beyond anything I could have imagined before the start. I am very, very happy. I’ve been on the attack quite early today and even though the chasing group bridged across, I managed to hang on as more and more riders got spat out the back. On the home stretch, Tejay was the first to kick out, but I didn’t panic and felt that the best moment to open my sprint was as we came out of that corner, and even though it was longer than I wanted it to be, I could luckily hold it all the way to the line."

Overall leader and 2nd on the stage, Tejay Van Garderen (EF Education First): "It was a good surprise, I’m super happy, super thrilled. I’m honored to represent yellow. I love this race. I love representing this race, coming out here and giving it everything. Did it look like we had a plan out there? We were just throwing grenades around but eventually one of them stuck. It was a big group but Trek and Jumbo-Visma had missed it, they had to pull with their teams to get it back, and once they did, it all regrouped. There was a new wave of attacks, and I followed what turned out to be a good move. Lawson did an awesome job, he was pulling really hard to make sure that there was some distance between our group and the chasers. The attack was partly because I didn’t want the guys behind to catch up, I knew the steepest part was in the middle, so I knew it was kind of far out for the sprint, but I wanted to go on the steepest part. We ended up with just three of us, and I launched my sprint early. I couldn’t quite get the stage win, but the yellow jersey is a nice prize. Baldy is the obvious day for the overall, but when you look at the route, you don’t want to sleep on any of these days, someone can seize the opportunity to gain time on nearly any stage. Tomorrow we go over Mount Hamiliton, and you remember what happened there in 2016, 2017. The race blew apart there. When we go along the coast, there could be wind that day. Even though Baldy is the typical, clear-cut GC day, we want to be awake for every stage."

5th on the stage and overall, Maximilian Schachmann (Bora-Hansgrohe): "Thanks to the guys for their work today. When we bridged the gap to the group of Felix in the front, I attacked and I was followed by a small group. We were the ones that fought for victory but, unfortunately, I missed a bit in the final kilometer. I tried, I gave my best today but it wasn't enough to win. Still, it was a solid day."

9th overall, Felix Großschartner (Bora-Hansgrohe): "I think I had a good day. I tried to go in the breakaway with 60km to go. It was a good situation and it worked out well as I was able to finish with the group of favorites. We have five more stages, so we'll see how everything plays out."

AMGEN Tour of California Stage 2 Result:
1. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step in 6:17:11
2. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) EF Education First
3. Gianni Moscon (Ita) Ineos at 0:04
4. Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 0:10
5. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:16
6. Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana at 0:27
7. Rob Britton (Can) Rally UHC Cycling
8. Sergio Andres Higuita (Col) EF Education First at 0:31
9. Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First
10. George Bennett (NZ) Jumbo-Visma.

AMGEN Tour of California Overall After Stage 2:
1. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) EF Education First in 9:31:19
2. Gianni Moscon (Ita) Ineos at 0:06
3. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 0:07
4. Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 0:16
5. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:22
6. Rob Britton (Can) Rally UHC Cycling at 0:33
7. Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana
8. David de la Cruz (Spa) Ineos at 0:34
9. Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:35
10. George Bennett (NZ) Jumbo-Visma at 0:36.

Stage 2:



Rémi Cavagna made it two in a row for Deceuninck – Quick-Step in Stage 3 of the Tour of California, soloing to victory in Morgan Hill, the home of his bike sponsor, Specialized. Cavagna attacked from the breakaway 75 kilometers out and holding off the chasers, in the process earning also the team’s 28th victory of the season. EF Education First's Tejay van Garderen held the overall lead.

Six ranked climbs were on the agenda of the 208km stage 3, which witnessed a frantic start peppered with numerous attempts to escape the peloton’s clutches, which eventually resulted in a sizeable group slip away. Tim Declercq and Danish Champion Michael Mørkøv were part of that move, but a lack of cooperation at the front helped the bunch reel in the fugitives. New attacks came 40 kilometers into the stage, and eventually two riders managed to snap the elastic – Rémi Cavagna and Alex Hoehn (US National Team) – and stretch their lead over the pack to more than ten minutes.

On the lower slopes of Mount Hamilton, the day’s toughest climb, Rémi rode clear of his companion and despite some hesitations on the tight hairpin bends of the technical descent, he managed to build a comfortable gap over Hoehn, at the same time maintaining his advantage on the bunch. With 20 kilometers to go, the 23-year-old Frenchman went into time trial mode, gritted his teeth, ignored the pain and pushed some big watts, relaxing only 200 meters from home, when he began celebrating his spectacular old-school victory.

Rémi Cavagna’s perfect day at the US World Tour race didn’t end here, as the “TGV from Clermont-Ferrand” made another visit to the podium to don the blue jersey, which is awarded to the most courageous rider of the stage. The young Frenchman was soon followed there by teammate and stage 2 winner Kasper Asgreen.

The Dane, for whom Zdenek Stybar provided a superb lead-out in the run-in to the finish, put in a strong sprint, emerging from the bunch to take fourth and cement his place at the head of the points classification, meaning that on stage 4 he will sport again the green jersey. Tejay Van Garderen held his 6 second lead over Gianni Moscon (Ineos) and 7 seconds on Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck - Quick-Step).

More from stage 3.



Stage winner, Rémi Cavagna (Deceuninck - Quick-Step): "Since winning last year in Belgium, I was in search of another victory, and taking it today gives me huge satisfaction. I came in California to help the squad, to pull in the bunch every day, but the team gave me freedom today and I am happy I could repay them for their confidence. In cycling, you need to take your chance and give your best every single time, because sometimes it works. This was the case for me today. The stage was so long and hard. We rode full gas from the start, and when I sensed there was an opportunity, I jumped into the breakaway, where we worked really well together. Then, when I attacked, I felt I could go all the way. Ok, I was a bit scared on the downhill, because it was a very difficult one, but I remained calm and went as fast as I could there. Last week, we visited the Specialized HQ here in Morgan Hill and did some fine-tuning in the wind tunnel, before going on a recon of the final 50 kilometers. These small details helped me today and that’s why this is a double victory, one which I am so glad I could get for Specialized and Deceuninck – Quick-Step, for me, the best team in the world."

2nd on the stage, Simon Geschke (CCC): "We tried to go in the early breakaway as it seemed like a good day for the breakaway. But, then everyone was surprised when it was only two guys who eventually went clear. I felt really good and actually, I was a bit surprised by my race today. Yesterday, I was suffering and, of course, I didn’t come here with the highest expectations after my two injuries this season. My legs today were better than yesterday. Cavagna was so far in front so the speed was not too high in the peloton, so I managed to get away inside the last 30 kilometers. I was still racing for third place at that stage and then, later on, we caught Hoehn. So, then I was riding for second place before eventually finishing in third place, which is still a really nice result for me. After the start to the season that I had, it’s a really nice feeling to be attacking and be up there in the final of a stage. My goal for the race was to go in a breakaway and take any opportunities, and I was able to do that today."

6th on the stage and 5th overall, Maximilian Schachmann (Bora-Hansgrohe): "It was a very long stage but without any change at the top of the GC. Once the smaller break went away, the peloton didn't have much interest in chasing them. Cavagna didn't present any threat, so we stayed with the group of the GC contenders and made sure we didn't lose any time. Felix and I keep our positions and it's one stage less to Pasadena."

AMGEN Tour of California Stage 3 Result:
1. Rémi Cavagna (Fra) Deceuninck - Quick-Step in 5:44:22
2. Ben King (USA) Dimension Data at 7:11
3. Simon Geschke (Ger) CCC
4. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 7:47
5. Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
6. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
7. Nathan Haas (Aus) Katusha-Alpecin
8. Davide Ballerini (Ita) Astana
9. Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Deceuninck - Quick-Step
10. Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates.

AMGEN Tour of California Overall After Stage 3:
1. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) EF Education First in 15:23:28
2. Gianni Moscon (Ita) Ineos at 0:06
3. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 0:07
4. Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 0:16
5. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:22
6. Rob Britton (Can) Rally UHC Cycling at 0:33
7. Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana
8. David de la Cruz (Spa) Ineos at 0:34
9. Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:35
10. George Bennett (NZ) Jumbo-Visma at 0:36.

Stage 3:



Fabio Jakobsen powered to another Deceuninck – Quick-Step win on Stage 4 of the AMGEN Tour of California on Wednesday. Deceuninck – Quick-Step became the first team in the event’s history to notch up three consecutive victories with as many different riders. After Kasper Asgreen and Rémi Cavagna, it was Fabio Jakobsen’s turn to shine, and the 22-year-old Dutchman seized the moment, reigning supreme on the uphill finish after having been piloted into an excellent position by a superb lead-out train.

Animated by a five-man breakaway, the stage was controlled by a couple of teams, who each posted a man at the front of the peloton to keep the lead group on a tight leash. Deceuninck – Quick-Step were represented by Tim Declercq, who put in an enormous amount of work and brought the field on the heels of the escapees, before Rémi Cavagna hauled back the leaders inside the last ten kilometers. In the finale of the 214.5km stage was marred by two crashes. Fabio Jakobsen was set up for a convincing win over Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates) and Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe). Kasper Asgreen retaining his third place on the general classification with three days to go.



Stage winner, Fabio Jakobsen (Deceuninck-QuickStep): "I had strong legs today, but also a formidable lead-out, which kept me out of the wind, protected me in those hectic final kilometers and delivered me where I needed to be for the sprint. This uphill drag to the line forced me to push hard, but I was confident and waited for the perfect moment to kick out and take another win for our team. What makes us so successful? We are a great group of riders, all willing to sacrifice ourselves and work hard for each other. It’s worth mentioning also that we came here in good shape and the previous wins this week gave us a lot of confidence, so we’re just riding the wave at the moment and seizing every opportunity we get."

2nd on the stage, Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates): "I am satisfied with my performance. Today we worked very well together and managed to avoid the big crash towards the final. Our plan was to have a sprint train going into the last kilometres and that worked out well. Ferrari got me in a perfect position into the final corner and then Rui Oliveira did a perfect lead-out by bringing me up to Richeze’s wheel. I started my sprint with 200 meters to go and I was hoping for a victory but unfortunately it was just a little too late. I had good legs in the sprint. Tomorrow will be another hard day but I’ll try again."

3rd on the stage, Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe): "Another long stage over 200km that was decided, as expected, in a fast sprint. The guys, and in particular Oscar Gatto, put in a strong effort to control the breakaway and positioned me very well in the final kilometres. We were at the front when needed and this was important today as we avoided the crashes. I missed just a bit of power in the final metres to take the stage but still, I'm satisfied with getting the green jersey again."

AMGEN Tour of California Stage 4 Result:
1. Fabio Jakobsen (Ned) Deceuninck - Quick-Step in 5:53:22
2. Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
3. Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
4. Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis
5. Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension Data
6. Davide Ballerini (Ita) Astana
7. Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Bahrain-Merida
8. Kristoffer Halvorsen (Nor) Ineos
9. Danny van Poppel (Ned) Jumbo-Visma
10. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step.

AMGEN Tour of California Overall After Stage 4:
1. Tejay Van Garderen (USA) EF Education First in 21:16:50
2. Gianni Moscon (Ita) Ineos at 0:06
3. Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck - Quick-Step at 0:07
4. Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates at 0:16
5. Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:22
6. Rob Britton (Can) Rally UHC Cycling at 0:33
7. Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana
8. David de la Cruz (Spa) Ineos at 0:34
9. Felix Großschartner (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe at 0:35
10. George Bennett (NZ) Jumbo-Visma at 0:36.

Stage 4:




Defending Champions Retake the Lead in OVO Energy Tour Series Motherwell
Jacob Hennessy took his first-ever OVO Energy Tour Series race win to help defending champions Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes into the lead of the series after the North Lanarkshire round. The 22-year-old took the win from a group of five riders whose pace comprehensively split the field on the testing Motherwell circuit.

Hennessy headed home Joey Walker of erstwhile leaders Madison Genesis and his Canyon dhb team-mate Alex Paton, with the presence of two riders in the front five enough to move them back into the lead of the OVO Energy Tour Series on countback after two rounds.

Canyon dhb p/b Bloor Homes take control as the OVO Energy Tour Series moves on to Aberdeen (Thursday 16 May), albeit with Madison Genesis level on points and Vitus Pro Cycling p/b Brother UK a further four points in arrears.

While there was a new name breaking the tape in the men’s event, Team Breeze’s Jess Roberts continued her dominance in the women’s race, with the British Road Race Champion making it two wins from two races in the 2019 OVO Energy Tour Series.

Her victory, ahead of Scottish Commonwealth Games star Neah Evans and Elizabeth Bennett of Campinense Velo Performance, also helped Team Breeze into the five OVO Energy Tour Series green jerseys that they’d claimed from the 2018 series.

Breeze now sit top of the standings, although former leaders Brother UK – Tifosi p/b OnForm are level on points after two rounds, while Campinense Velo Performance are three points further in arrears.

The men’s and women’s Eisberg Sprints competitions also saw new leaders taking on the red jerseys in Motherwell, with Steve Lampier of the Cornish Saint Piran team and race winner Roberts taking the lead in the respective competitions.

Round three of the men’s and women’s OVO Energy Tour Series takes place in Aberdeen on Thursday 16 May with action getting underway with a packed program of support events by Scottish Cycling from Midday.

Highlights of the OVO Energy Tour Series are screened on ITV4 and broadcast around the world. Action from the Motherwell event will be shown at 18:00 on Thursday 16 May, with the program also available on demand via the ITV Hub catch up service.





Team Sunweb’s Tom Dumoulin Abandons Giro d’Italia on stage 5
Team Sunweb’s Tom Dumoulin was forced to abandon the Giro d’Italia in the early kilometers of stage five, with the injuries sustained in yesterday’s crash proving too much for the 2017 winner to continue with the race.

Tom Dumoulin said: "I came here for a three week adventure and I wanted to finish it, I’m not ready to go home. I went on the trainer this morning in my room and it was actually kind of ok, but when I stood up on the pedals my knee was really sore. I also tried it seated but that didn’t work either – I could spin the legs but not race. For me it's terrible. Months and weeks of preparation and dedication went into this Giro and in one moment it’s over. It’s not how I wanted it to go of course, but it is how it is. I don’t know how bad the injury is, we only know that nothing is broken and it will probably just be swollen for a few days, but we have to see. For now I will just rest and see how it goes."

Team Sunweb physician Stephan Jacolino said: "Unfortunately the pain in Tom’s knee was too much for him to continue today. He sustained bruising to his quadriceps tendon and surrounding soft tissues, and we hoped the pain might ease as the day went on, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case. We’ll see if additional examinations are needed when he returns home but hopefully with some rest, he should be back on the bike with a week doing some easy training."

Team Sunweb’s Giro d’Italia coach Marc Reef added: "We’re really disappointed to see Tom abandon today, this was our main season goal and we came here for a good GC result, but of course this changes our complete focus for the race. We’ve got a really strong group of guys here, both younger talents and those with more experience, all of which are more than capable of going for a stage. We’ll take a day by day approach, look for opportunities and match our strengths to the stages to try and go for the win."

The end of Dumoulin's 2019 Giro:




Dani Navarro Out of Giro d'Italia
Team Katusha-Alpecin’s Spanish rider Dani Navarro crashed heavily at 6 km from the finish of stage 4 of the 2019 Giro d’Italia. Navarro was transported to the hospital of Tor Vergata in Rome, where he was diagnosed with multiple fractures.

Dani Navarro broke his right collarbone as well as three ribs. The ribs perforated the lungs and he suffers a lung contusion with a hemothorax with hemoptysis and a pneumothorax at the top and the back of the lung.

For the moment the rider is stable and he will be monitored carefully in intensive care in the Policlinico Tor Vergata.





Health update: Louis Meintjes
Louis Meintjes has been forced to withdraw from the Amgen Tour of California after sustaining a wrist fracture in a crash in the finale of the stage four finish in Morro Bay.

The incident happened with just over 3km remaining, and saw a number of key general classification riders affected including race leader Tejay van Garderen (EF).

The 27 year-old bravely completed the stage in obvious discomfort and was immediately seen to by our medical team at the finish, after which he was taken to a local hospital for further investigation. He will now travel to Hamburg for further treatment by a specialist hand surgeon.

Meintjes had only recently returned to racing at the Tour de Romandie after a lengthy spell on the sidelines following a groin injury sustained in a crash at Paris-Nice.

He had shown some strong form in California, being placed just outside the top-20 on the general classification with the queen stage, the finish at Mt. Baldy, still to come.

An update on his health will be provided in due course.

Louis Meintjes:
San Benedetto del Tronto - Italy - wielrennen - cycling - cyclisme - radsport - Louis Meintjes (RSA - Dimension Data) pictured during Tirreno-Adriatico stage 7 from San Benedetto del Tronto to San Benedetto del Tronto (10.05M) - ITT Time Trial Individual - tijdrijden contre le montre - 13-03-2017 - photo LB/RB/Cor Vos © 2018



Scotland to Host Opening Stage of the 2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain
Scotland will host the opening stage of the 2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain on Saturday 7 September with Stage One of Britain’s national Tour beginning in George Square in Glasgow and finishing in Dumfries and Galloway.

The stage will be jointly hosted by EventScotland, Glasgow Life and Dumfries and Galloway Council. Today's announcement follows Glasgow and Scotland’s recent success in securing the inaugural UCI Cycling World Championships in 2023, which was announced earlier in the year.

This year’s race will begin on a Saturday for the first time since 2010, allowing the Glasgow Grand Depart to form part of an exciting weekend of cycling as the 20th anniversary edition of the Pedal for Scotland charity event departs from the city on the Sunday morning. The 2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain will run over eight stages from Saturday 7 to Saturday 14 September.

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said: "Events play a vital role in our visitor economy and the OVO Energy Tour of Britain is part of an exciting calendar of cycling events, taking place across Scotland this summer. With more than 2,000 miles of the National Cycle Network covering the country, the event provides the perfect stage to showcase this to an international audience of cycling enthusiasts. As a long-term partner, EventScotland is delighted to be continuing its support of the Tour of Britain in 2019. The successful hosting of this annual event has helped establish Scotland as a world leading sports destination, which, was key in securing the inaugural 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships."

British Cycling Chief Executive, Julie Harrington, added: "This announcement is a further feather in the cap for Scotland, which has consistently proved itself to be a fantastic host for some of cycling’s biggest events in recent years. The newly formed Women’s Tour of Scotland, the forthcoming UCI Track Cycling World Cup in Glasgow and, of course, the 2023 world championships all demonstrate the standing with in which Scotland is held in the cycling world. We share with all of our event partners a determination that these events should not only showcase the very best of cycling at elite level, but provide necessary inspiration for people across Scotland and Great Britain to get out on their bikes. We look forward to what I’m sure will be a wonderful opening stage, the legacy of which will be felt long after the Tour departs."

Dumfries and Galloway also most recently welcome the OVO Energy Tour of Britain in 2016, but has been a regular fixture on the route of Britain’s most prestigious cycle race, having hosted stages on nine previous occasions, with winners including Mark Cavendish, Edvald Boasson Hagen and Elia Viviani.

OVO Energy Tour of Britain Race Director Mick Bennett said, "We are delighted to be returning to Scotland and look forward once again to a warm welcome for the opening stage of this country’s biggest professional bike race. Both Glasgow and Dumfries & Galloway have hosted some fantastic and memorable stages of the OVO Energy Tour of Britain, and I am confident that this September will be no different."

Further details of the Scottish stage, including the finish location for Stage One in Dumfries and Galloway, will be announced on Wednesday 29 May at the national launch of the 2019 OVO Energy Tour of Britain. The OVO Energy Tour of Britain is British Cycling’s premier road cycling event, giving cycling fans the opportunity to see the world’s best teams and riders competing on their doorstep.





Molano Stopped to Undergo More Health Tests
After tests performed under the Team’s strict and sophisticated internal monitoring system, UAE Team Emirates announces that some seemingly unusual physiological results have come back for the rider Juan Sebastian Molano.

Following Team policy concerning the protection of our athletes’ health, the Colombian will be suspended to undergo further testing in the following weeks, in collaboration with the UCI, as we try to determine the cause of these unusual results. In order to protect the right to privacy, no further information regarding the matter will be released until results from the necessary tests come back.

Juan Sebastian Molano:




Team Bahrain Merida Announcement
Today we have been notified by UCI about the potential Anti-doping rule violation by two members of our Team, rider Kristijan Koren and Sports director Borut Božič. The alleged violations relate to the 2012 and 2013 season.

The Team strictly advocates zero-tolerance doping policy and has therefore provisionally suspended both members concerned.

We would like to stress that both cases relate to the 2012 and/or 2013 seasons. The Team always carries out a thorough medical checks (including biological passport check) of any new signed rider.

The Team will not comment this case until the formal proceedings are final and binding.

Kristijan Koren:




UAE Team Emirates Suspends Durasek
Today UAE Team Emirates was informed that the UCI has opened an investigation into Croatian rider Kristijan Durasek, regarding his involvement in the Anderlass case in Austria a few years ago.

Following the Team’s internal policy and the information received from the UCI, the athlete has been suspended, effective immediately, as we follow developments in the case.

The Team hopes that Durasek can prove he was not involved in the affair. Should it be proven otherwise, he will be terminated immediately.

Kristijan Durasek - Stage 2 of the 2017 Tour of Croatia:
Tour of Croatia 2017 - 41th Edition - 2nd stage Trogir - Biokovoa 123 km - 18904/2017 - Kristijan Durasek (CRO - UAE Team Emirates) - Roson (Caja Rural - Seguros RGA) - photo KL-Photo/BettiniPhoto©2017



RTVE and La Vuelta 19 Rap with Arkano and his ‘Otro Intento Más’
Over the years, the official song of La Vuelta has become one of the race’s hallmarks. This tradition, now over four decades old, has seen all types of styles, songs and artists accompany the peloton. But, this year, the organization has taken it one step further. ‘Otro intento más’ will be the race’s first foray into rap territory. The official video of this song, performed by Arkano, has been presented today at the Terraza de Poniente of the Hotel Exe Moncloa, in Madrid.

"It’s an honor that La Vuelta and the Province of Alicante have allowed me to put lyrics to such an important sporting event. I’m especially thrilled this year as the race takes off from my homeland (Alicante). Also, thanks to this project I’ve had the opportunity to work with Pablo Cebrián (who I’ve been following for a while) for the first time, which has made it a double victory for me. The song is about searching for the best version of ourselves by taking control of our life narrative, and about how we need to dare to go for “otro intento más (another try)", explained Arkano.

The video that accompanies the song features some of the Province of Alicante’s most iconic locations, including the Port of Alicante, Arkano’s home town. Other noteworthy locations are Las Salinas de Torrevieja, where La Vuelta 19’s official departure will take place on the 24th of August, as well as Benidorm, Calpe and Ibi, the stars of the first three stages.

“To be the star, not just of the cycling competition but also of its official video, is a unique opportunity for us from a touristic, economic and media point of view”, said César Sanchez, president of the Alicante Provincial Council, who added that “linking us to a race of these characteristics, which requires the unity of all our municipalities in order to be successful, allows us to project our image as a strong, dynamic and competitive territory internationally”.

La Vuelta Songs
Ever since Sheila and B.Devotion inaugurated this sporting and musical tradition back in 1977 with ‘Singing in the rain’, La Vuelta’s official song has featured artists of such calibre as Gloria Estefan, A-Ha or Earth, Wind & Fire. Javier Guillén, General Director of La Vuelta has emphasized the value of this tradition: "The official songs of La Vuelta form part of the story that surrounds each and every edition. They are the soundtrack to the event and, as such, must be in accordance with the values we wish to transmit. In this case, they are innovation, non-conformity and freshness, as evoked by Arkano’s song. We also want to showcase the headquarters of our official departure – Alicante – through the important visibility conveyed in this video, filmed in the host territory’s most emblematic locations."

The official video of La Vuelta 19 will be broadcast over 400 times on the different RTVE stations over the next four months. The song will also accompany the daily TV broadcast of all 21 stages on the public station. "La Vuelta is an emblematic part of RTVE's heritage. Each year it allows us to travel, discover new places and showcase our rich geography. 'Otro intento más' is the best La Vuelta song I've heard in recent years and I can think of no better soundtrack to accompany our institution's grand deployment in this event, which we consider our own", concluded Fernando López Puig, Director of Content, Programming and Stations at RTVE.

Key points:
·
La Vuelta has presented in Madrid, at the Terraza de Poniente of the Hotel Exe Moncloa, the video for La Vuelta’s official song, ‘Otro intento más’ sung by Alicante rapper, Arkano.
· The video was filmed in various locations throughout Alicante and will be broadcast over the next four months on the different RTVE stations and channels.
· ‘Otro intento más’ is La Vuelta’s first foray into the rap world in its history of official songs, spanning over 40 years.

Discover the Official Video of La Vuelta 19

‘Otro intento más’ - Arkano:




#InsideOut with Tom Dumoulin - Giro d'Italia Preparations
Complete focus. Total determination. So much sacrifice.
The Sunweb team were saving this one for a little later in the game, but they didn't want you to miss out after Wednesday's events. #InsideOut with Tom Dumoulin as he prepared for the #Giro








The PEZ INSTAGRAM Take a look at our Instagram page for a live feed and giveaways straight from your phone: https://www.instagram.com/pezcyclingnews

*****
The PEZ NEWSWIRE!
Don’t forget to check the “NEWSWIRE” section, you can find it on the homepage, just above the EuroTrash section. The bits of news that missed the EuroTrash deadline are in there, plus any news as-it-happens will be added there too.

*****
Any comments drop me a line, email address: [email protected] or Twitter. And check the PezCyclingNews Twitter and Facebook Page.

 


Related Stories