Sagan wins stage 1 of the USA Pro Challenge

Peter Sagan (Cannondale) has taken his 15th win of the season, sprinting to victory in the opening stage of the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado.

Sagan won the bunch sprint ahead of Greg van Avermaet and Kiel Reijnen despite having spent a lot of energy establishing a breakaway inside the last 10km of the race.

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Sagan was in a small group that moved away from the peloton with roughly 9km to go but the efforts of Team Sky and BMC at the head of affairs quickly shut down the move. Carter Jones (Bissell) and George Bennett (RadioShack-Leopard) managed to hold on out front as the finish line approached but with 1.4km remaining the BMC-led main field swept them both up and set things up for a sprint finish.

Sagan had recovered quickly from his breakaway attempt and positioned himself perfectly near the front of the peloton in the final kilometre. When he opened up his sprint with a couple hundred metres to go no-one could stay with him.


The 103km opening stage featured four category 4 climbs and was animated by a long breakaway by Ian Burnett (Jelly Belly), Craig Lewis (Champion System) and Matt Cooke (Jamis-Hagens Berman).

Tomorrow’s second stage of the seven-stage race takes the riders 202km from Aspen to Breckenridge and features several challenging climbs, including one to Independence Pass which begins inside the opening 10km.

Follow the link for results from stage 1 of the 2013 USA Pro Cycling Challenge.

Wiggins prepares for a return to the track

Bradley Wiggins looks poised to set aside his Grand Tour ambitions in a quest to win a fifth Olympic gold medal on the track, at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

“Having lost weight and muscle the last few years, I wouldn’t be able to walk back into that team pursuit squad, so I am not taking it for granted but I am working towards that”, Wiggins said. “It would be nice to finish the career with another Olympic gold.”

Wiggins admits there’s little chance of him winning the Tour de France again and that with Chris Froome in the team, Wiggins is likely to play second fiddle in future Tours.

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“I don’t mind admitting that Chris is probably a better Grand Tour rider than me,” he told the Times. “He is a much better climber, he can time trial as well. He has age on his side, he has no kids. That’s fine.”

“If Chris wants to, he could potentially win five tours now. So if I want to win another tour, I’d probably have to leave the team.”

When asked Wiggins said he has no desire to leave Team Sky.

Click here to read more at The Guardian.

Knee injury won’t stop Gilbert starting the Vuelta and Worlds

A crash on stage 6 of the Eneco Tour saw Philippe Gilbert withdraw from the race with a knee injury. But the Belgian’s BMC team has confirmed the reigning world champion’s injuries aren’t severe enough to prevent him starting the Vuelta a Espana on Saturday and the World Championships in September.

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“I’m not the least worried that Phil will be at the start of the Vuelta,” said team manager Yvon Ledanois. “It was impossible that he would start in the last stage of the Eneco Tour, but there’s nothing broken or fundamentally injured. Phil will have three or four days rest, but with the form he is in, I do not expect a decline.”

“He will be there fully for the Vuelta. We have two, three stages picked out, but he especially wants to lay the foundation for the World Championships.”

Gilbert crashed with about 60km remaining on the penultimate stage of the seven-stage Belgian Tour and was able to finish the stage with some help from teammates. He headed to hospital after the stage and required eight stitches in his knee, but was cleared of any serious injury.

Click here to read more at Cycling News.

Several teams release Vuelta squads

In the coming days we’ll publish the full startlist for the Vuelta a Espana, which begins Saturday, but in the meantime here are a couple of the newly-released teamlists.

Omega Pharma-QuickStep:

Kevin De Weert, Andrew Fenn, Tony Martin, Gianni Meersman, Serge Pauwels, Pieter Serry, Zdenek Stybar, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck and Kristof Vandewalle.

Katusha:

Joaquim Rodriguez, Giampaolo Caruso, Vladimir Gusev, Vladimir Isaychev, Dmitriy Kozonchuk, Alberto Losada, Daniel Moreno, Luca Paolini and Angel Vicioso.

Movistar:

Alejandro Valverde, Eros Capecchi, Beñat Intxausti, José Herrada, Javi Moreno, Sylwester Szmyd, Imanol Erviti, Iván Gutiérrez and Pablo Lastras.

Euskaltel-Euskadi:

Igor Anton, Jorge Azanza, Mikel Landa, Egoi Martinez, Mikel Nieve, Juanjo Oroz, Samuel Sanchez, Pablo Urtasun and Gorka Verdugo.

Astana:

Vincenzo Nibali, Paolo Tiralongo, Jakob Fuglsang, Janez Brajkovic, Andrei Grivko, Tanel Kangert, Andrey Zeits, Maxim Iglinskiy and Alessandro Vanotti.

Highlights from the women’s World Cup Vargarda races

Yesterday morning we brought you news from the two women’s World Cup races being held in Sweden: a team time trial, won by Specialized-Lululemon, and a road race, won by Marianne Vos. The UCI has now released a highlights video from the weekend:

Linus Gerdemann joins MTN-Qhubeka

Team MTN-Qhubeka has announced that German rider Linus Gerdemann will join their ranks for the 2014 and 2015 seasons.

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Gerdemann rose to prominence in 2007 when he won a stage of the Tour de France and was briefly in the yellow jersey. He’s since won the Tour of Luxembourg, Bayern Rundfahrt the Deutschland Tour and a number of other races.

Despite this success Gerdemann was unable to find a contract for the 2013 season after spending two years with Leopard Trek.

“I am really happy to join the team,” the 30 year old said of joining the African squad. “We have a huge opportunity to make the sport big on the African continent and you don’t have this opportunity everyday. I see huge potential for African cycling and it’s an honour for me to join the team.”

Text adapted from a MTN-Qhubeka press release.

Klöden, Monfort dropped by Trek team for 2014

According to Belgian newspaper Gazet van Antwerpen the new Trek team won’t have room for current RadioShack-Leopard riders Andreas Kloden and Maxime Monfort.

Monfort was the best-placed RadioShack-Leopard rider at this year’s Tour de France, finishing 14th overall. It is being reported that Monfort is in discussions with Lotto-Belisol.

Andreas Kloden won't have a spot with Trek next season, but he's reportedly talking with IAM Cycling.

Andreas Kloden won’t have a spot with Trek next season, but he’s reportedly talking with IAM Cycling.

Kloden has finished on the Tour de France podium twice but last won a race in 2011 with the Tour of the Basque Country. Kloden is believed to be in discussions with IAM.

With Trek taking over RadioShack-Leopard’s WorldTour license in 2014, the team’s focus is shifting towards supporting Fabian Cancellara in the Spring Classics.

Click here to read more at Cycling News.

Pate extends with Sky

American Danny Pate has extended his contract with Team Sky and will ride on in 2014 after joining the British squad in 2012.

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Pate said:

“I enjoy riding for Team Sky and I feel like I have a place that I’m really comfortable in, yet at the same time there is still a challenging platform to ride well. I like my position on the team. It’s not the team leader spot – that’s just not what I am. I enjoy what I do and I’m happy that the team values the work I do for them.”

Sky Pro Cycling Team Principal Sir Dave Brailsford said: “We’re delighted to have got a new deal in place for Danny. Everyone in the team knows just how hard he works and it’s no coincidence that he’s been part of some our best stage race performances.”

Text adapted from a Team Sky press release.

Join our Vuelta Skelta Strava challenge

1356_CT_Fox_Badge_V02-full copyIn case you missed our announcement the other day, we’re running a Strava competition with Eurosport to get you out climbing during the Vuelta a Espana. We’re giving you 15 days to do the same amount of climbing as in stages 14 and 15 of the Vuelta combined — a little more than 7,000m.

For more information and to sign up, click here.

An eBike that can do 80km/h

At what point does an electric bicycle become a motorbike? Sure, this eBike mightn’t be petrol powered, but thanks to a pair of motors, a 72-volt battery and more than a little technical know-how, the bike in the video below is capable of touching speeds as high as 50mph (80kmh/h).

These custom-built ebikes cost between US$2,000 and $5,000, depending on the power output, and can be found through the manufacturer’s Facebook page. But don’t expect to be able to (legally) ride one in Australia — we’re guessing they produce well over the 250W limit allowed for eBikes in Australia.

Click here to read more at road.cc

The Rocacorba Recap

And finally this morning, here are a few things you might have missed:


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