Ben Jacques-Maynes (Jamis-Hagens Berman) rode in the break during stage 2 of Tour of Utah. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Ben Jacques-Maynes was a mess. It was two days after his stage 2 crash at the Tour of California in May, and the veteran rider, recovering in a hospital a with litany of injuries, had one thing in mind.
“I was saying, ‘I don’t want to go out like this,’” Jacques-Maynes recalled Tuesday at the Tour of Utah. “I was laid up in bed in pain and thinking about how I was going to pay for new teeth. But there was such a huge outpouring of support and general well wishes. It definitely helped me get back.”
About two months later, the 36-year-old rider, competing in his 14th and final pro season, was back. He’s still missing front teeth, and his body is far from healed. But after placing fourth overall in the five-day Cascade Cycling Classic that ended July 26, Jacques-Maynes is racing in Utah in an unfamiliar personal space.
“I am going to have a totally different take on this race,” said the Jamis-Hagens Berman rider. “It’s survival here to actually feel better in Colorado [USA Pro Challenge]. It’s my goal. You might see me here in the gruppetto a couple of times, but I am on the upswing.”
Jacques-Maynes’ crash in May occurred after the often-unheralded cyclist received a rare moment in the spotlight. He was the only rider in the Tour of California to compete in all 10 editions and he was presented with a one-off anniversary bike as the preamble to a celebration of longevity that never occurred.
“It’s been an interesting return to racing,” said Jacques-Maynes, who was among a five-rider break early in stage 2 from Tremonton to Ogden. “I am definitely putting myself back together still. I am good enough to be here and participate with my team, but certainly I’m not on the level as I’ve been in the past.”
Jacques-Maynes finished 43rd in the main field in the stage 2 and is ninth overall, trailing race leader Kiel Reijnen (UnitedHealthcare) by 13 seconds.
In the Cascade Cycling Classic, Jacques-Maynes was also in an early race breakaway that stayed away. He described his fourth overall place as “lucky.”
“My power was down; I definitely felt I was struggling just to be in there,” he said. “I was fortunate to make a big breakaway that lasted. I had a couple of good times, but there’s a lot of work to do to get back to my usual self.”
Jacques-Maynes’ crash in California was four years after another crash in the same event nearly ended his career. In the long fifth stage from Seaside to Paso Robles, the Central California rider suffered a fractured collarbone. A premature recovery led to a staph infection that required a second surgery. He took several months to recover in what he described as a “life-altering medical intervention.”
“It’s mental; Your body can go through so many different issues,” said Sebastian Alexander, the Jamis-Hagens Berman team director, of his team captain’s current return. “But it’s mental that you have to be ready to go again. Physically, we heal and we are good again.
“Mentally, it’s very difficult when you crash or have a teammate who crashes. It affects your mind. It’s about fear. It’s a human thing. There’s nothing bad with that. People handle it in different ways.”
Juan Jose Haedo, the now-retired Argentinean sprinter who works with Jamis-Hagens Berman and whose younger brother rides for the team, concurred.
“I think it’s more mental,” Haedo said. “He [Jacques-Maynes] is 36, I think. Your body can go as long as your head goes. If you have the strength to come back and not be afraid of any situation then for sure you can come back. He’s young enough to be strong enough.”
Jacques-Maynes, who plans to retire after his team participates in the team time trial at the UCI World Road Championships next month in Richmond, Virginia, claimed the KOM competition last year at the USA Pro Challenge. It would be a lofty expectation to repeat the title.
“The body is putting itself back together from the trauma,” he said. “Your body is healing so there’s a lot involved in that. You’re always tired, and it’s also the secondary things.
“I found out just last week I probably broke my back in the crash. It’s an ongoing process. You just take lumps as they come. It was a major crash, and there are ramifications. But you just try not to get caught up in the negativity of it.”
Even if Jacques-Maynes plans to wind down his competitive career, pro cycling’s effects will linger. He faces further extensive dental surgery late this year and in early 2016.
“I am hoping it goes smoothly,” he said. “I do have some trepidation of drawn-out medical care, and that’s the biggest mental hurdle I need to get over. Fortunately, I won’t have to be bike riding at the time.
“I will be long done with cycling long before I will recover from the accident. I won’t have to like jump back on the bike and get back right away to training. I will be going to work or being a stay-at-home dad.”
Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) wore yellow for one day at the Tour de France. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com (File).
Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) will make his return to racing at the Vuelta a España, which is set to start August 22, less than 50 days after fracturing his vertebrae at the Tour de France. Cancellara sustained two transverse process fractures in two lower-back vertebrae while wearing the yellow jersey on stage 3 of the Tour.
“The initial plan was to return to racing at the Eneco Tour next week,” said Cancellara in a team press statement. “But it’s too early. I’m still experiencing some pain when I’m doing high intensity, even though I have been training since more than a week with training rides of up to four hours. I’d love to race already, but my body is just not ready yet.”
Cancellara had almost the exact same fracture earlier in the season during the E3 Harelbeke. Two months later, he returned at the Tour de Fjords race in Norway. The start of the Vuelta will mark six and a half weeks since his crash at the Tour de France, a significant difference in time with a much quicker return to racing.
“I’ll be at the start of the Vuelta for the seventh time now,” he continued. “It’s a race that I like: lots of kilometers, hard racing, good roads, and fans that appreciate our sport. Above all, I want to get back into the habit of racing and help our leaders, starting with the team time trial in Marbella. I want to be as good as I can at the worlds. I’ll suffer to get through the first week, but I need competition.”
Laurens Sweeck won the 2015 Belgian cyclocross national championships in the under-23 category. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com
Belgian under-23 cyclocross champion and worlds runner-up Laurens Sweeck (Corendon-Kwadro), who faced a possible two-year suspension for the intravenous use of the infant nutritional supplement Vaminolact, will return to racing next season after the Belgian Cycling Federation announced it was dropping its case against him. Investigators from the federation found that there was insufficient evidence of wrongdoing to continue the case.
Vaminolact, which is normally administered intravenously to infants as a nutritional supplement, is not considered a banned substance. However, intravenous use of the drug would violate the UCI’s so-called “no needles policy.” Sweeck maintains that he only used the solution orally.
Sweeck was one of a number of Belgian athletes caught up in the investigation of doctor Chris Mertens, who has also been accused of administering ozone therapy to athletes. The treatment involved infusing athlete’s blood with ozone, a practice that has been criticized not just for its association with blood doping, but also for being dangerous and without scientific basis.
Sweeck said in a press release that he was relieved that the case had been closed. “The quick verdict finally provides some security, for example, for my participation in the first World Cup event in Las Vegas,” said Sweeck, who now expects to take the start at CrossVegas, the first-ever American cyclocross World Cup race, on September 16.
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Jure Kocjan (Team SmartStop) celebrated his stage 2 win in Ogden. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
For the second day in a row, the American domestic teams showed their stripes at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, and this time it was SmartStop’s Jure Kocjan who came away with the win. The Slovenian winner of the points classification in last year’s Tour of Utah sprinted out of a select group after 99.2 miles of racing to sprint to his first Utah stage victory in Ogden. The field had been whittled down by a category 3 climb that topped out with 20 miles left to race.
“Off the back there was a big gap, like 50 seconds,” Kocjan said of the split in the field after the climb. “So, I told them we have four guys, four other guys, four of my teammates. And I told them just go as hard as you can ’cause I knew there were not a lot of good sprinters at the front. So, I knew if we make it to the end, I’m probably the fastest one.”Top 10, stage 2
Top 10, GC
The early break included: Dan Eaton (Axeon), Pierrick Naud (Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies), Mackenzie Brennan (Hincapie Racing), Ben Jacques-Maynes (Jamis-Hagens Berman), and Jay Robert Thompson (MTN-Qhubeka).
On the day’s only climb, a category 3 ascent of North Ogden Divide, Eaton got away, and only Thompson and Jacques-Maynes could keep him in sight. Over the top, the lone leader’s advantage was a mere 25 seconds. The rest of the break was brought back by the peloton.
Brent Bookwalter (BMC) attacked out of the group over the top of the climb and chased up to Eaton with 15 miles to go. The duo extended their gap slightly, to about 45 seconds.
“There was little lull in pace, and I was feeling good, so I thought I would bring a couple of strong guys with me,” Bookwalter said. “For a minute, I had Chris Butler with me, which I though was great. I knew these guys [Team SmartStop] were a good team for the bunch kick. I lost Chris on the downhill. … But [we were] sort of waiting for another group to come up to us, but that group was a little bigger than I had hoped. I was still happy to be in the race and give it a try.”
The catch was made just before the field passed the finish line with three circuits to race around Ogden, about seven miles to go.
Attacks came and went on the final laps, but nothing stuck.
In the finale, UnitedHealthcare’s Janez Brajkovic pulled hard for yellow jersey Kiel Reijnen. Then, BMC Racing took over with one kilometer left. Next it was Team SmartStop to cue up the finale.
Jure Kocjan came through with the win for his SmartStop squad, narrowly out-sprinting Robin Carpenter (Hincapie Racing). Brent Bookwalter (BMC) finished third.
Reijnen kept his overall lead by four seconds over Alex Howes (Cannondale-Garmin). Kocjan moved up to third overall with the time bonus earned. The UHC rider also keeps the lead in the points classification, while Gregory Daniel (Axeon) wears the king of the mountains jersey.
On Wednesday, the race will ride 109 miles from Antelope Island State Park to Bountiful and includes four categorized climbs — three category 3s and one category 2.
Coryn Rivera (UnitedHealthcare) won the second and final stage of the Tour of Utah Women's Edition. Photo: Tour of Utah
Coryn Rivera (UnitedHealthcare) powered through the final 600 meters of the second day of the Tour of Utah Women’s Edition: Criterium Classic to take the win in downtown Ogden. Hannah Barnes (UnitedHealthcare) finished second on the day and captured the overall title.
The omnium-style format meant many riders were still in the hunt for the overall title heading into day two of criterium racing, despite Allie Dragoo’s (Twenty16-ShoAir) wide margin of victory on day one in Logan.
UnitedHealthcare controlled the front of the peloton throughout most of the 75-minute race on the 1.5-mile course through downtown Ogden. Heading in the final half-lap, UHC had three riders on the front with Barnes sitting third behind Rivera. Rivera hit the front a long way out and buried herself for Barnes. Her powerful pull created separation heading into the long finishing straight, and she held off the peloton to take the win, saluting her teammate Barnes who took second and, in the process, won the overall title. Samantha Schneider (ISCorp Cycling) finished third.
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Oleg Tinkov said Russia's economic woes are not affecting his business — for now. Photo: Gregor Brown | VeloNews.com
Last week, Tinkoff-Saxo team owner Oleg Tinkov — who, as many have pointed out, is the Donald Trump of cycling — called Barack Obama a monkey on Twitter.
Yes, just days after the Tour de France ended with its first African-registered team and first black African riders to finish the race, the owner of one of the biggest teams in cycling called a powerful and well-known black man a monkey.
Tinkov’s tweet was in response to one from Cannondale-Garmin director Jonathan Vaughters that showed the Mona Lisa morphing into Russian president Vladimir Putin.
— Jonathan Vaughters (@Vaughters) July 30, 2015
— Oleg Tinkov (@olegtinkov) July 30, 2015
This was not an accident or some cute portmanteau we can chalk up to Tinkov’s imperfect grasp of English. “Monkey” isn’t a racist taunt only in America or only in English. It is universal. European football matches have a long history of monkey chants and banana peels being thrown onto the field.
But that sport’s authorities and teams have cracked down. When then-Liverpool player Luis Suarez, of Uruguay, was accused of using a racist slur against a black opponent in 2011, he was fined £40,000 ($62,296) and banned for eight games.
Last year, when a Villarreal fan throw a banana at Barcelona player Dani Alvez, the Spanish Football Association fined Villarreal €12,000 ($13,070) due to the fan “committing an act of contempt or disregard concerning racial or ethnic origin towards an adversary.”
The team identified the culprit and banned him for life.
These are bans and fines for a player and a fan. So what is cycling’s plan for dealing with overt racism from a team owner? Reached by email, the UCI said this when asked about Tinkov’s tweet: “The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) strongly condemns any sort of discrimination in cycling, including racism. Together with all of our stakeholders, we have the responsibility to make sure that such behavior has no place in our sport.”
UCI’s head of communications, Sébastien Gillot, said that would be the agency’s only comment on the matter. If that’s the only comment, but it’s followed by decisive action (too late for any action to be swift), fine. But if the UCI thinks saying the right thing excuses it from doing the right thing, it is mistaken.
At last year’s Tour, Swiss rider Michael Albasini was accused of shouting racist abuse at Kevin Reza, a black Frenchman riding for team Europcar. It was almost identical to the Suarez situation — two rivals, in the heat of the game, with no officials to witness. A fine and an eight-game ban for Suarez, nothing for Albasini.
Two days after Tinkov’s tweet, massive crowds in the Eritrean capital of Asmara welcomed African riders Daniel Teklehaimanot and Merhawi Kudos (MTN-Qhubeka) back from France. The pair’s route from the airport to their private reception with Eritrea’s president was reportedly lined with people, many who turned out in polka-dot clothes, in honor of the days Teklehaimanot led the Tour’s climbing competition.
Cycling hasn’t been the provincial sport it once was for a long time. But now it’s more global than ever. There is no place for racism, and no excuse to let racist abuse go unpunished.
Oleg Tinkov called a black man a monkey in a public forum. This one is cut and dried.
Daniel Teklehaimanot and his MTN-Qhubeka teammate Merhawi Kudus were the toast of Eritrea after finishing the Tour de France. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com
MILAN (VN) — The Tour de France rolled into Paris for its final stage over a week ago, but the party continues in East Africa’s Eritrea. The country welcomed home Merhawi Kudus and Daniel Teklehaimanot Saturday after they helped MTN-Qhubeka become the first professional team from the African continent to race the grand tour.
Kudus, 21, was the youngest rider in the 2015 race. Teklehaimanot became the first African to wear the polka-dot climber’s jersey, taking it for four stages in the first half of the three-week race.
Pushing the South African team’s debut to a new high, Brit Steve Cummings won the stage to Mende on the day millions celebrated Nelson Mandela.
“It was huge for the team, it was huge for Africa,” general manager Doug Ryder told VeloNews last week.
“It’s an honor that now our Africans are known and that we need to step up the team structure even more to support them.”
“It’s great for cycling to get an African team,” Cummings explained at the Tour. “There’s a lot of talent in Africa who doesn’t get a chance. [The team] makes sport bigger and better across five continents.”
Eritrea and the rest of Africa went crazy for the nine-man team. From Utrecht to Paris, a group of Eritrean-flag-waving fans followed MTN’s black and white bus. Most days, while the French applauded and pointed at the stars, the Eritrean supporters sang and danced for the country’s first cyclists in the Tour.
Given the party atmosphere over the three weeks, it seemed only right that when Kudus and 26-year-old Teklehaimanot touched down in the capital city of Asmara that the stage gave them a hero’s welcome.
Team MTN-Qhubeka called the celebration “crazy.” Images, beamed around the country live on state television ERI-TV, showed thousands of locals lined along the main streets of Asmara waving the country’s blue, red, and green colors and dressed in polka-dots. Kudus and Teklehaimanot sat on top of white Toyota trucks in matching red dots for a ride from the Asmara International Airport to the president’s palace to meet Isaias Afwerki.
The two were interviewed on television and sat as special guests — Kudus in the team’s black colors and Teklehaimanot in a polka-dot jersey he brought home from France — while locals sang and danced in their honor at the Bahti Meskerem Square.
Eritrea, still recovering from a war with Ethiopia, sits a lowly 42nd in a list of the richest African countries. With Kudus and Teklehaimanot reaching a global audience during three weeks of the Tour de France, an entire nation’s spirits appeared to be lifted.
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The "Giant of Provence", Mont Ventoux, is rumored to appear in the 2016 Tour de France after a three-year absence. Photo: BrakeThrough Media
Sportwereld reports that Mont Ventoux will feature in the 2016 Tour de France, which begins on July 2 in Mont-Saint-Michel. The 2016 Tour will also visit the small country of Andorra early in the race.
The famous “Giant of Provence” first appeared in the Tour in 1951 and most recently in 2013. The peloton has traversed the hors-categorie climb on 15 occasions with nine summit finishes.
Chris Froome used the Mont Ventoux stage finish to assert his authority on the 2013 edition of the race. He beat Nairo Quintana by 29 seconds and led the general classification by 4:14 at the end of the day.
Lance Armstrong famously gifted a stage win to the late Marco Pantani atop the climb in 2000. After a tough battle up the climb, Armstrong allowed Pantani to cross the line first to claim the stage win, as a gesture of good faith. Pantani did not see it this way, and Armstrong later regretted the decision.
The rumored 14th stage of the 2016 race would start in Draguignan and the peloton would cover 180km (111.8mi) by the finish atop the bald mountain.
I currently have a Cycleops Pro Powertap rear road wheel (rim brake). It is a 32-spoke hub laced to a Cycleops rim, which I think might be a rebranded Velocity aluminum rim. I have the matching front wheel but wanted to re-build them into a nicer carbon-rimmed wheelset, keeping the Powertap hubs. Most of the carbon rims I’ve looked at have fewer drilled holes, like 18, 20, 24 count. Do you know of any 32-hole carbon rims? I don’t really race or TT, so I don’t need anything with a deep profile, and I am less concerned about weight.
Secondly, assuming I find a compatible carbon rim, can I use a bladed spoke like Sapim spokes? I think I’ve heard you can only use regular spokes laced in a certain pattern for the Powertap hubs. I was wondering if you happened to know this as true?
Here is the response from Rich Sawiris, owner and founder of Wheelbuilder.com, expert on wheels and making them with Powertap hubs.
“There are no great options for 32H carbon road rims, however it is possible to swap the hub shell on the Powertap Pro for a different hole-count. We still have a few Pro model shells around the shop that would allow the transfer of an existing torque tube for a lower spoke count. A 24H count would give you the greatest number of carbon rim options from every major manufacturer.
Bladed spokes are fully compatible with a PowerTap hub if the major dimension of the blade does not exceed 2.6mm. The most popular options are the DT Aerolite, Sapim CX-Ray, and DT AeroComp models. The PowerTap hub requires a minimum 2-cross lacing pattern on the non-drive side flange, but we recommend it on both flanges. Typically, we would lace a 24H hub with 2X lacing and a 28H or 32H hub with 3X lacing.”
Can you provide advice on cleaning road bikes with disc brakes — techniques, cleaner, etc.? The way that I clean my bike seems to be associated with having grease or grime on my front pads (and in turn producing loud squealing and reduced braking power) a few rides after my cleaning. My LBS is guessing that my use of dish soap and water to clean the frame may be the source of the problem. More generally, with the growth of disc brakes on road bikes, there might be great interest among VeloNews readers in an article on proper cleaning of road bikes with disc brakes. At least it would be of interest to this reader.
Here are answers from a number of disc-brake product managers.
From FSA’s Joel Richardson (formerly with Hayes):
“The safest route when cleaning the bike would be to remove the front and rear wheels, remove the brake pads and install the bleed spacers that come with the brakes. This will ensure that the pads and rotors are not contaminated during the cleaning. The bleed spacer will prevent the caliper pistons from getting pumped out if the brake lever is bumped while cleaning.
“Now this is a bit of a process and inconvenient if the user cleans their bike after every ride. Most disc-brake manufacturers recommend isopropyl alcohol to clean the rotors and disc-brake components. However, mild dish soap and warm water is also acceptable. With this in mind, I suspect that the soap and water is not the root cause of the noise for your reader. Instead, the grease and road grim that the soap and water are washing off the bike and drivetrain may be making their way on to the rotors and/or brake pads. If this is the case, then the pads will need to be replaced and the rotor cleaned per above.
“Another possible cause for the noise and loss of power relates to burnish. The brake pad material is transferred to the surface of the rotor and this in turn creates the friction needed to stop the bike. It is possible to remove some of this material when cleaning with soap and a brush. On the next ride the pads will make noise and power would be low until the burnish process has been completed again. If the power has not returned and the noise continues after 15-20 good stops from 10mph then the pads may be contaminated.
“Basically, we’ve been cleaning disc brake-equipped mountain bikes since 1998 with soap and water and have never seen an issue related to the soap.
“One final possibly is related to drivetrain maintenance. Mountain bikers have learned that you must be cautious when cleaning and lubricating your chain and derailleurs. Overspray from cleaners or spray lubes can easily pass through the spokes on to the rear rotor. The next time the brake is applied, these contaminants are transferred to the brake pads, and it’s time for new pads.
“Hope this helps you with your column. As mountain bikers, we are accustomed to the nuances of disc brakes. With the introduction of road disc brakes we have a new group of riders that may not be aware of all the tips we’ve picked up of the last 17 years.”
From Eric Schutt, media manager for Hayes:
“When washing a bicycle with disc brakes, we suggest using isopropyl alcohol to clean the rotors. It’s best to avoid any detergents, chemicals, or lubricants from coming in contact with disc brake rotors and pads. If you wanted to go the extra step, you can use a clean, lint-free towel to clean the pads. You can either run a towel thru the brake slot in the caliper, or remove the pads to clean them.”
From Stefan Pahl, product manager at Magura:
“We haven’t got experience with road disc brakes, but with MTB disc brakes, and they should be identical.
“We recommend cleaning rotors with soapy water and a clean brush. But you can also use disc cleaner sprays or alcohol. Make sure to always use clean rags or towels!
“Be careful when using brushes or sponges when cleaning with soapy water, which are not clean and might have some grease or oil residue from the drivetrain. This can contaminate the rotors/pads.
“Contaminated pads, especially with organic compounds, have to be replaced. The oil or grease is soaked up by the pad material like a sponge, the pad will never perform equal after cleaning.
“Other advice: Be careful when lubing the chain when using sprays. Never let oil mist get onto the rotor.”
“Some bike cleaner sprays contain oil or other lubricants to make the bike shine and repel water. They will also contaminate the rotors and pads.”
From Bryce Olson, customer service representative at TRP:
“Cleaning and washing a road bike with disc brakes definitely presents some issues when it comes to keeping the pads and rotors free of contaminants. Hands down, the best way to avoid squealing pads as much as possible is to remove the pads before washing the bike. Granted, this takes a few extra steps and a little more time, but is the best way to avoid the issue. Any pad that gets wet, whether it’s contaminated or not, is more likely to squeal than a dry pad for a while until they dry out. While we haven’t done any scientific or dedicated testing, in our experience using a bike-specific wash instead of dish soap tends to cause less noise issues. Finally, cleaning the rotors separately, after washing the bike, with isopropyl alcohol to remove any residue or contaminants before using the pads is highly recommended to help keep the pads clean and contaminant-free.”
The post Technical FAQ: Powertap rim choices and disc-brake cleaning appeared first on VeloNews.com.
14 months after a possibly career-ending crash, Taylor Phinney (BMC) returned to racing at the Tour of Utah. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Peter Stetina (BMC) took the start line for his first race after a terrible crash in early April. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Stetina's knee looked bad at the start, but he was able to finish the 132-mile stage on courage and determination. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Taylor Phinney's parents, Davis Phinney and Connie Carpenter-Phinney, with BMC team doctor Eric Heiden were on hand to witness his return to cycling. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
BMC's wounded warriors, Phinney and Stetina, rolled out of Logan. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
The peloton headed out of Logan and toward Bear Lake in a steady rain. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
The peloton climbed up from Bear Lake in a cold and steady rain. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Safeway Airgas has the most stylish and expensive car in the caravan, a Porsche Panamera hybrid. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Stetina struggled on the climb out of Bear Lake, but would join the peloton on the long descent to the finish. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Johann Van Zyl (MTN-Qhubeka) led the day's break of seven riders up Logan Canyon, and would win the most aggressive rider's jersey. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Greg Daniel (Axeon) led the break on the descent to Logan, picking up the KOM and best young rider's jerseys for his work on the day. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
The peloton chased the break down Logan Canyon in a spray of cold rain. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Alex Howes (Cannondale-Garmin) led Kiel Reijnen (UnitedHealthcare) and Johann Van Zyl (MTN-Qhubeka) into the circuits in Logan. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Phinney followed Matt Busche (Trek Factory Racing) through the final corner before starting the circuits in Logan. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
With five hours of steady rain, race favorites Frank Schleck (Trek Factory Racing) and Chris Horner (Airgas-Safeway) were just looking to stay as safe and dry as possible. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Reijnen won stage 1 with his close friends Howes and Phinney rounding out the podium. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Eric Young (Optum-Kelly Benefit Strategies) took the field sprint for sixth place. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
An exhausted but elated Stetina received congratulations at the end of a long and wet 132 miles in the saddle. Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
The stage 1 podium in Logan featured close friends and training partners Kiel Reijnen (first), Alex Howes (second), and Taylor Phinney (third). Photo: Casey B. Gibson | www.cbgphoto.com
Matteo Pelucchi (IAM Cycling) claimed a second victory at Tour of Poland on Tuesday. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com
Matteo Pelucchi (IAM Cycling) won his second stage in a row at Tour of Poland on Tuesday, sprinting to victory in stage 3 after 166km of racing from Zawiercie to Katowice.
“This second victory boosts my morale, but it’s also a great thing for the team since we’re all preparing for the Vuelta too,” said Pelucchi. “And that is my next goal.”
Trek Factory Racing’s Giacomo Nizzolo ended up on the podium again, this time in second place, ahead of LottoNL-Jumbo’s Tom Van Asbroeck. Despite a seventh-place finish in stage 3, Marcel Kittel (Giant-Alpecin), winner of stage 1, kept his overall lead by six seconds over Nizzolo. Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) is third, 10 seconds back.
The early breakaway included Matej Mohoric (Cannondale-Garmin), Marcin Bialoblocki (One Pro), Kamil Gradek (ActiveJet), Ian Boswell (Sky), Adrian Kurek (CCC Sprandi-Polkowice), and Marcus Burghardt (BMC). However, the day’s flat course was meant for the sprinters. The break never got more than three minutes’ advantage and was pulled back with 60 kilometers left, aside from Bialoblocki, who pressed on alone, only to be caught with 4km left.
“Today we tried a different tactic with the guys, and I am very glad that it paid off,” explained the winner. “Just after the false flat in the last kilometers, a small group including some very good sprinters managed to get a bit of a gap. I was extremely fortunate to have Vicente Reynes and Roger Kluge with me. They were able to plug the hole, and I just had to stay on their wheels. It was perfect. They put me in the front position, and instead of kicking my sprint off, I preferred to wait until the last possible moment to produce my top effort. That was a good idea, but in practice I know it can be dangerous.”
Wednesday’s stage 4 will offer three significant climbs over the 220km course from Jaworzno to Nowy Sacz, but will see a flat, 28-kilometer run-in to the finish.Top 10 results
Top 10 GC after stage 3
Richie Porte is trading Sky's blue for BMC's red in the 2016 season, but will he be able to coexist with Tejay van Garderen? Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com (File).
Richie Porte and Tejay van Garderen share similar skill-sets as GC riders, and for 2016, they’ll be sharing the same BMC team as well. Four days into cycling’s official trading season, this may turn out to be one of the most interesting deals of the year, and its implications for the two young GC stars could be complicated.
Richie Porte’s move from Sky to BMC Racing sets the stage for what might be a highly successful partnership with Tejay van Garderen, the emerging American Tour de France contender. The high-profile transfer raises expectations but provokes tricky questions.
Will the two budding GC contenders be able to work together? How will they balance their individual goals? And, more importantly, will it create a division within the team?
BMC Racing is clearly looking to bolster its GC base by signing the 30-year-old Tasmanian. As BMC manager Jim Ochowicz pointed out, the team doesn’t pack a pure sprinter, so it was looking to bring another GC contender to complement, not overshadow, van Garderen’s position on the team.
“Richie is a really great athlete, he’s a good team player, and he’s someone who can work with Tejay, and on his own leadership,” Ochowicz told VeloNews. “One person cannot cover all the GC races of the season. It’s a big plus for us all around.”
Both have strengths that complement each other — Porte and van Garderen are steady climbers and excellent time trialists with confirmed palmares — yet it will be interesting to see if these two can find a balance going into next year’s Tour de France without tipping over the boat.Pluses for van Garderen
Some assume Porte’s arrival to BMC is a veto of van Garderen’s emerging role as outright team leader. BMC manager Jim Ochowicz emphatically stated that is not the case.
“Absolutely not,” Ochowicz told VeloNews. “We have all the confidence in Tejay. We’ve been talking about this since April, about bringing another strong climber for the GC. And now we have that person with Richie.”
During four seasons with Sky, Porte emerged as one of the best super-domestiques in the bunch, helping Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome win three yellow jerseys, while picking up some choice victories of his own. Of course, Porte isn’t moving to BMC to usher around van Garderen, but his presence will bolster the American deep in any grand tour where they race together.
Porte’s arrival will also take some of the pressure off van Garderen. While Damiano Caruso and Samuel Sánchez lead in such races as the Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España, neither is expected to deliver the way van Garderen is.
The rough is idea is that Porte and van Garderen will split the stage racing calendar between them. For example, Porte might race Paris-Nice and Volta a Catalunya, while van Garderen can target Tirreno-Adriatico and Tour de Romandie. And the only time they might race together would be the Tour.
That gives BMC winning cards in all the major races, and more options in July — less pressure on van Garderen to carry the team’s GC ambitions alone.Pluses for Porte
Porte isn’t moving to BMC to just target smaller races. While ticking off wins like Paris-Nice and the Volta a Catalunya in 2015 packs huge WorldTour points, on a personal level, Porte wants more than that.
It’s clear that Sky is backing Froome 100 percent. If it flicked the defending Tour champion Wiggins at the end of 2012 to throw the entire weight of its powerful organization behind Froome, Porte knew if he stayed at Sky, he would always be second fiddle.
At BMC, he will receive equal billing with van Garderen at races like the Tour, and be the team’s outright GC leader at just about any other race he goes to.
“And we will still need to look at the courses for the major grand tours,” Ochowicz said. “We will make decisions based on the routes, and which races best suit the riders. Richie is already a proven winner.”Upside for BMC
With Porte, BMC signs a guaranteed GC captain for a major part of the WorldTour calendar.
“We don’t have a pure sprinter, like a [André] Greipel or [Mark] Cavendish, so when we’re not at the one-day classics, we’re a GC team,” Ochowicz said. “Between Richie and Tejay, we will have strong captains in nearly every stage race to go to. When we show up, we race to win.”
The team has its classics program covered, with Philippe Gilbert and Greg Van Avermaet. Ochowicz also confirmed the team is not looking at signing a major sprinter for 2016, so with Porte and van Garderen sharing the GC load, the team hopes to be competitive in every major race it targets.
Porte will also provide a strong engine for team time trials, a discipline BMC, winner of the trade team world TTT title in 2014, takes very seriously.One Porte + one van Garderen = one yellow jersey?
Can two riders working together do more than one rider alone? That’s what BMC is betting on for next year’s Tour.
Ochowicz repeated the notion that Porte and van Garderen racing together will only bolster the entire team’s prospects in the season’s major stage races.
BMC needs to look no further than Movistar to find its inspiration. The Spanish squad came to the 2015 Tour with two co-leaders, Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde, and ended up with a bonanza, finishing second and third overall, as well as winning the team prize and the white jersey. Quintana is being groomed as the team’s outright GC leader, but having Valverde helps spread the burden.
That’s how the presence of Porte could be a big boon for van Garderen.
“Ever since Cadel [Evans] retired in January, we knew we wanted to bring on another climber for GC,” Ochowicz said. “We when commit to a race, we want to put on a good show, and we want to be competitive.”How it could all go wrong
So far, BMC brass have been discreet about what exactly they are promising Porte.
Some comments by Porte suggest that he thinks he’s going to have the chance to be outright leader at BMC. He told Aussie broadcaster SBS during stage 9 of the Tour, when he confirmed he was leaving Sky, that one of his main motivations was to get the chances he wasn’t going to have under Froome, saying, “But I’m ready, I’m in the prime of my career now the next few years, so I need to go and lead a team.”
The imminent arrival of the Tasmanian sparked reports that van Garderen was exploring his options. Though he’s under contract through 2016, van Garderen’s agent reportedly put out feelers with other teams. As VeloNews’ Gregor Brown reported, there was some contact with Trek Factory Racing, but it appears van Garderen will finish out his contract with BMC in 2016.
BMC has done a good job in the past balancing goals of riders with similar agendas. Gilbert and Van Avermaet share the classics campaign, while Evans and van Garderen rode in unison during the 2012 and 2013 Tours. Porte and van Garderen are both easygoing characters, and both have said they are friendly with each other, but every racer knows their career comes with an expiration date.
Van Garderen has been groomed as Evans’ heir apparent since his breakout 2012 Tour, and it will be interesting to see how he handles the arrival of Porte.
As Ochowicz confirmed, the team has yet to map out the 2016 racing, so it’s possible Porte and van Garderen might target different grand tours next season.
Since finishing fifth and winning the best young rider’s jersey in 2012, van Garderen’s had a bumpy road at the Tour, finishing 45th in 2013, fighting through crashes and illness to match his career-best fifth in 2014, before suddenly abandoning in the Alps this July while poised for a shot at the podium just five days short of Paris.
Van Garderen, however, still believes he can reach the podium in Paris, and even win the Tour some day. Porte, too, believes he can go farther than he has in grand tours. If they both end up in the Tour next year, which is highly likely, at some point, one rider will have to sacrifice his chances for the other. Fitness and luck quickly put everyone in their place at the Tour, but the seeds are there for possible tension.
Neither van Garderen nor Porte has been able to win a grand tour yet. Both are confirmed performers in one-week stage races, and both have unfulfilled grand tour ambitions.
The balancing act between Porte and van Garderen will be much more delicate for BMC brass than it was with Evans and van Garderen, when one was the aging champion and the other, the rising prince.
Both Porte and van Garderen want to be kings, and there’s only one throne.
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Molly Shaffer Van Houweling set a new hour record for U.S. elite women, world masters 40-44 women, and pan-American women in Mexico in early 2015. AFP PHOTO | HECTOR GUERRERO
Molly Shaffer Van Houweling is back at it, setting a September 12 date to attempt the UCI hour record at the Velodromo Bicentenario in Aguascalientes, Mexico. The high altitude velodrome is well-known to set fast times.
“Mexico has a special place in the UCI hour record history, as the site of records by Eddy Merckx, Jeannie Longo, and Leontien van Moorsel,” Van Houweling said. “I hope my upcoming attempt will be part of that proud history.”
Van Houweling first broke the U.S. hour record last December and has made multiple attempts since. Her latest attempt in early July extended the U.S. hour record mark to 46.088km, longer than the current UCI hour record of 46.065km set by van Moorsel in 2003. However, that attempt did not qualify for the UCI hour record, as she had not been enrolled in the Biological Passport for long enough for the UCI to validate it before her attempt.
“It is an honor and an immense challenge to take on the most epic record in all of cycling. I have had several opportunities to ride on the track in Aguascalientes, and I know that it is a fantastic facility,” Van Houweling said.
In May 2014, the UCI modernized the hour record, allowing bikes that conform to the rules for endurance track events. The rule change sparked interest again in the record, but mostly on the men’s side with the record having been broken five times. Bradley Wiggins set a mark of 54.526km on June 7.
UCI president Brian Cookson is happy to see a second attempt at the record on the women’s side after Sarah Storey’s unsuccessful attempt in February.
“I am delighted that another athlete will make an attempt on the women’s UCI hour record. It will be very exciting to see what she can achieve in her attempt at the world record.”
Luis Leon Sanchez rode the Giro d'Italia earlier this year, supporting Astana teammates Fabio Aru and Mikel Landa, who both finished on the podium. He'll seek more success with those two at the Vuelta this August. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com (File).
MILAN (VN) — Top Spanish one-day cyclist, Luis León Sánchez is on the road to Richmond, Virginia, for the world championships this September. His idea is “to win” in the Vuelta a España, worlds, or both.
The second part of his season continues Tuesday with the Vuelta a Burgos in Spain with Team Astana. The Murcian is racing there with Mikel Landa to prepare for the team’s charge on the Vuelta a España starting August 22 in the country’s south.
“I want to improve my condition in the Vuelta a Burgos to arrive on top form for the Vuelta,” Sánchez said in a press statement.
“Astana is fielding a top team; we have the responsibility of fighting for the win and I want to do my part. Nibali, Aru, and Landa are great riders, and we are fighting for nothing less than the win.”
Nibali announced Friday that he will race in Spain alongside Fabio Aru and Mikel Landa, second and third in the Giro d’Italia this May, respectively. Nibali, besides winning the Giro in 2013 and the Tour de France in 2014, won the Vuelta in 2010. He is one of only six riders ever to have won all three grand tours.
With Sánchez, the nine-man team will include Diego Rosa, Paolo Tiralongo, and Dario Cataldo. Team manager Giuseppe Martinelli told VeloNews, “This is probably the strongest team that I’ve ever had for a grand tour.”
In the way that Englishman Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEdge) came off the Tour de France and won the Clásica San Sebastián on Saturday, Sánchez aims for the same in the Vuelta and Richmond worlds on September 27.
The 31-year-old is known as one of the most crafty and cunning stage hunters. His ability helped him take four stage victories in the Tour de France over the years, and push on further to overall wins in the Tour Down Under and Paris-Nice.
“I want to make the team,” Sánchez said.
“In Baku at the European championships, we showed that we know how to race as a team. I’ve been studying the Richmond course already, looking over the videos sent to me from the team.”
First the Vuelta a España, which begins with a time trial on August 22 in Marbella. Sánchez, who renewed his contract for 2016 and 2017, has to help the team in turquoise win the overall as he tried to do in the Giro with Aru.
“It was easy for me to stay with team Astana,” he added.
“I’m happy in this team, I’ve known [general manager Alexandre] Vinokourov since the time that we raced together in Liberty Seguros. I hope to pay back the trust that the team has given me.”
Allie Dragoo (Twenty16-Sho-Air) won stage 1 of the Tour of Utah Women's Edition on Monday. Photo: Tour of Utah
Allie Dragoo (Twenty16-Sho-Air) held off a chasing peloton through relentless rain in downtown Logan for a solo win in stage 1 of the two-day Tour of Utah Women’s Edition: Criterium Classic. The Salt Lake City resident finished 49 seconds ahead of Gretchen Stumhofer (Colovita-Bianchi) and Linda Villumsen (UnitedHealthcare), who was third.
“I’m super pumped to have this win. I just can’t believe it,” Dragoo said at the finish of the 75-minute race. “I just moved to Utah. It’s great. I’m pumped to do it for my new home state.”
The field included a number of top riders, such as Erica Allar (LA Sweat), the current National Criterium Calendar leader, and Coryn Rivera (UnitedHealthcare), last year’s winner of the inaugural Tour of Utah Criterium Classic.
Racing on a technical 1.5-mile circuit, the peloton broke into several groups after a small break was established. Rivera worked alongside her teammate Villumsen to catch the break before Twenty16-Sho-Air took over.
“There was a break ahead of us for a bit. We were catching the group and I was just countering,” Dragoo said. “I thought for sure they’d catch me. I know that my team is smart enough to cover moves and not work in a break if they get in one and shut stuff down. It really worked out. It’s nice that we got the win today especially because we are such a small team.”
Speaking prior to the race, Dragoo added her appreciation for getting the opportunity to race alongside the men’s race.
“It’s great that they have a race for us. There’s a lot of publicity, TV time, and it’s good for women to be aired with the men. We really appreciate it. It’s going to help the sport grow for women and hopefully the younger generation sees it and wants to do this too.”
Ogden will host the second and final day for the women, racing 75 minutes on a fast, flat 1.5-mile circuit, using some of the same roads the men will race for the stage 2 finish. The winner of the Criterium Classic will be determined by the total points between the two days of racing.Top 10 results
1. Allie Dragoo, Twenty16-Sho-Air
2. Gretchen Stumhofer, Colavita-Bianchi
3. Linda Villumsen, UnitedHealthcare
4. Allison Arensman, Twenty16-Sho-Air
5. Olivia Dillon, Visit Dallas Cycling
6. Justine Clift, Fearless Femme
7. Amanda Miller, Visit Dallas Cycling
8. Coryn Rivera, UnitedHealthcare
9. Samantha Schneider, ISCorp Cycling
10. Hannah Barnes, UnitedHealthcare
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Simon Yates took to Twitter to voice his frustration with BMC's reaction to the events of Saturday's Clásica San Sebastián. Photo: Tim De Waele | TDWsport.com
MILAN (VN) — Simon Yates, twin brother of Clásica San Sebastián winner Adam, called BMC Racing’s reaction to Greg Van Avermaet’s crash with a television motorbike “disrespectful.”
The Orica-GreenEDGE rider took to Twitter to defend his 22-year-old brother and teammate following Saturday’s incident in the Basque Country in northern Spain.
Just so i’m clear – I’m not saying what happened is correct, it shouldn’t have happened to ANYBODY or in ANY race……
— Simon Yates (@SimonYatess) August 2, 2015
but you cant say things like “we’ve been robbed” and ” i was going to win” when the race wasnt over.
— Simon Yates (@SimonYatess) August 2, 2015
Yates posted a grainy screen shot of the television coverage with around 10 kilometers to race that showed Belgian Van Avermaet crashing and Adam Yates around two yards behind.
Underneath the photograph, he wrote, “#justsaying.” Race winner Adam retweeted Simon’s post.
— Simon Yates (@SimonYatess) August 2, 2015
The posts came following BMC’s reaction to the incident.
“The bad thing is that I think I could have won the race,” Van Avermaet said in a press release Saturday. “I had a big gap.”
“Greg had a good gap,” added Sport Director Yvon Ledanois. “If this does not happen, he wins the race and Philippe finishes second.”
Team president Jim Ochowicz said Sunday, “Greg was robbed and the BMC Racing Team was robbed when this happened.”
Van Avermaet attacked on the final climb of the day with around 10 kilometers to race, but a following TV motorbike lost control on the narrow road and touched its front wheel with the bicycle’s rear wheel. BMC’s cyclist, winner of the Tour de France’s Rodez stage, went down on the right and Yates made his way through the carnage on the left.
Yates made an attack of his own later on the climb. He went on to win his first WorldTour race, which was partly spoiled by a loss of TV coverage. He did not realize he had won when he reached the finish solo, only throwing up his hands to celebrate the San Sebastián win several moments after crossing the line.
It is not the first time this year that vehicles played their part in a race. Dane Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) was taken down by a motorbike in the Tour de France, and in the Ronde van Vlaanderen, a Shimano service car caused both Jesse Sergent (Trek Factory Racing) and Sébastien Chavanel (FDJ) to crash.
Adam Yates himself was involved in a controversial crash with BMC’s Peter Stetina nearby in a stage finish of the País Vasco this April. In the final kilometer of a sprint finish, the group had to make its way around poorly marked traffic poles on the road. Stetina broke his right tibia, patella, and four ribs, and Yates broke his finger.
Ochowicz added that the team plans “to explore every legal option” after the incident Saturday that marred the Spanish classic.
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Coryn Rivera (UnitedHealthcare) raced the 2015 edition of La Course by Le Tour de France. Photo: Iri Greco / BrakeThrough Media | brakethroughmedia.com (File).
About half a lifetime ago and when she wasn’t yet a teenager, Coryn Rivera spent considerable time pedaling around Southern California. It was heady stuff for a 10-year-old to ride 100 miles, but it was a family affair and it served her well.
Rivera, now 22 and the defending champion of the women’s omnium at the Tour of Utah, was on the back of a tandem with her father as the pilot. Her indoctrination was a quick learning experience.
A year later, she was racing solo. She finishing second in her first race, a one-lap boys’ race. But success in female racing soon followed, and it lead to her dozens of national titles and current position among the country’s top sprinters. “It’s one my favorite memories of cycling,” said Rivera, who finished eighth on the rainy opening day of the two-day women’s omnium. “It’s a big part of my life, growing up and riding with my parents.”
Much has happened since.
A sprinting specialist since her junior racing days, Rivera is steadily improving as a well-rounded rider. She’s succeeding at road races and improving as a time trialist. She’s won nearly a dozen races this season and finished second at the Pan-American Games road race and at the road nationals.
“Looking back, it’s seems like it’s been a long time,” said Rivera. “I’ve been racing pro along with collegiately throughout my career. I’ve been in a bunch of different categories and it’s been some what of a slow progression throughout it all.
“But I think I’m nail all of these little milestones, from studies to collegiate racing to pros. I’ve always kind of been pigeon-holed as a crit rider, but as I am getting older and having more time to ride, I am maturing as a rider and getting stronger on the hills and working on my time trialing just a little bit. I’ve stepped it up this year and it’s showing.”
Rivera’s breakthrough in pro racing occurred with her victory in stage 3 of the Thuringen Rundfahrt in Germany in late July. She remained in Europe to compete in La Course, the women’s event on the final day of the Tour de France. “The first big pile up, just about everyone went down,” said Rivera of La Course. “There were wheels everywhere. It was so slippery, even the mechanics were going down just getting out the car. I only crashed once then it was just trying to get back on an trying not to crash. I couldn’t count how many crashes I dodged.”
Rivera’s improvement has also been apparent to Rachel Heal, the UnitedHealthcare women’s team director. “This has been the breakout year for her,” Heal said. “It’s a combination of her getting strong and strong. It’s hard work and self-motivation. She’s always had the potential but now she’s turning into much more of an all-around rider. She may be be a GC rider, but she can win one-day races and certainly sprints.”
Women’s racing concludes Tuesday with a late-morning criterium in Ogden.