UCI presidential election to be held tonight
Months of shadowy politicking, allegations of corruption and the use of secret, damning dossiers will come to an end tonight when the International Cycling Union (UCI) holds its presidential election.
Barely a year after disgraced American Lance Armstrong was banned for life for doping, cycling is about to elect a leader it hopes can pump fresh life into the sport and push it towards a doping-free future.
Yet what has become a duel between Irish incumbent Pat McQuaid and British Cycling president Brian Cookson has taken almost as many twists and turns in recent months as the storied career of the disgraced American champion.
Click here to read the full story. Text via Justin Davis, AFP.
The UCI presidential election explained
If you’re still trying to make sense of all the drama around tonight’s UCI presidential election, take a look at these couple articles we put together a few weeks ago. In part one we looked at the nomination and voting process and in part two we looked at what the two candidates are promising and what sort of reputation they each have.
For further reading, check out this article published overnight on CyclingNews. It’s a good summary, in question and answer form, of the big issues around the election.
UCI’s CADF announces new independent board
Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation (CADF) Director Dr. Francesca Rossi announced last night that the new CADF will be headed up by Dr. George Ruijsch Van Dugteren. The board will also feature two legal experts and a financial expert.
“The new board does not include any members of the UCI senior management, further strengthening its independence from cycling’s governing body,” said Dr. Rossi. “I am particularly delighted that Dr. George Ruijsch will be chairing the new Foundation Board of the CADF.
“Dr. Ruijsch is someone with enormous experience in the field of anti-doping, invaluable to the CADF. He will be accompanied in this role by an internationally recognised and eminent group of experts who will constitute the new board.”
CADF was created by the UCI in 2008 to take care of the peak body’s management and funding of anti-doping measures. The Foundation has attracted some criticism for not being independent of the UCI.
Click here to read more.
Men’s U23 road race startlist
The men’s U23 world championship road race will be held tonight (Melbourne time) and will be raced over 173km with seven laps of a hilly Florence circuit to finish.
Some 173 riders are set to take the start. Here’s the full startlist.
Australia will be represented by Caleb Ewan, Campbell Flakemore, newly-crowned ITT world champion Damien Howson, Bradley Linfield, Adam Phelan and Samuel Spokes.
Women’s world championship road race preview
On Saturday night (Melbourne time) the elite women take to the stage for their world championship road race. It will be raced over 140km and will conclude with five laps of the same circuit the U23 men do seven times. It’s the same circuit the elite men will tackle 10 times in their race on Sunday.
For a great preview of the women’s race, including a viewing guide, predictions and more, check out prowomenscycling.com.
We have to agree with the author and say that Marianne Vos is the stand-out favourite. She’s the reigning champion, she’s won a large percentage of the big races she’s entered this year, and even though she will be heavily marked all day, she’s likely to be too strong. Watch for her to attack on the final climb before outsprinting anyone who can stay with her.
Tour of Tasmania starts this Sunday
The Tour of Tasmania is arguably the most important stage race on the men’s Subaru National Road Series calendar and this year’s edition starts on Sunday.
This year’s race, which will be held over eight days, has undergone some significant changes from past tours, and is being directed by Cycling Australia for the first time.
The race starts with Sunday’s Mt. Wellington team time trial before the riders take on six road stages in six days and then finish with a criterium in Devenport the following Sunday.
Last year’s event was won by Lachlan Norris who is currently riding for Team Raleigh in the UK. The runner-up in last year’s race, Mark O’Brien, is racing alongside Norris on Raleigh as well.
Nathan Earle will likely go into this year’s edition as the favourite. He was third in last year’s race and has enjoyed a terrific season since then and currently leads the NRS aggregate. He has also signed a contract with Team Sky for 2014.
Click here to learn more about the 2013 Caterpillar Tour of Tasmania.
Sparkassen Giro joins World Cup
The UCI’s elite women’s road race calendar is showing some signs of revival in 2014 with several new races being added.
A women’s Tour of Britain (titled “The Women’s Tour”) will be held in early March and the Sparkassen Giro, a previously 1.1-ranked event, will be promoted to the World Cup, becoming the ninth event on the calendar.
The race, to be held on August 3 next year, will slot in between the Tour of Chongming Island and the Vargarda Team Time Trial.
“We’ve added a race in Germany, the Sparkassen Giro, so that will be on the calendar and we’re looking forward to that,” said UCI Road Coordinator Matthew Knight. “The course looks good. I think it’ll provide an interesting challenge in the middle of the World Cup season.
The major omissions from the 2014 calendar are the Giro della Toscana, in which half the peloton refused to start due to safety concerns, and the Tour de Languedoc-Rousillon, which was cancelled the day before the race.
Here’s how the UCI women’s road World Cup is looking for 2014:
15th March – Ronde van Drenthe, Netherlands
30th March – Trofeo Alfredo Binda – Cittiglio, Italy
6th April – Ronde van Vlaanderen, Belgium
23rd April – La Flèche Wallonne Femmes, Belgium
18th May – Tour of Chongming Island World Cup, China
3rd August – Sparkassen Giro, Germany
22nd August – Open de Suède Vårgårda Team Time Trial, Sweden
24th August – Open de Suède Vårgårda Road Race, Sweden
30th August – Grand Prix Plouay-Bretagne, France
Click here to read more at VeloNation.
Movistar confirms split with Pinarello
Movistar team director Eusebio Unzue has confirmed suspicions that his team won’t be riding Pinarello bikes next season. The move ends nearly 30 years of collaboration between the Italian bike manufacturer and the Spanish team.
Unzue told CyclingNews, “We aren’t continuing with them. We’ve got various different offers on the table and we will make an official position for which sponsor we’re with next Sunday.”
Pinarello extended its contract with Team Sky last month.
Click here to read more at Cycling News.
RIDEYE: a black box for cyclists
It’s being billed as “a black box camera for your bike” and judging by the amount of money raised so far, the RIDEYE’s Kickstarter campaign seems to have been a success.
The project had been hoping to raise $32,000 to develop the camera but with more than two weeks remaining in the campaign more than $54,000 has been raised.
The RIDEYE is a HD video camera that sets itself apart from other cameras with its apparently-month-long battery life, its crash detection sensors and its ability to record over the oldest file on the camera’s memory storage, ensuring you never run out of room when trying to record.
Here’s some sample footage:
Click here to read more at about the RIDEYE camera.
The psychology of road rage against cyclists
Last night ABC TV’s Catalyst program aired a story about the psychology of road rage against cyclists. The piece is only short (5:15) and a lot of it is stuff we already knew (in groups vs out groups, for example) but it’s still worth a look.
Click here to download the .mp4 file (it’s not on YouTube yet).
Bicycle Film Festival starts next week
The 10th Bicycle Film Festival kicks off on Thursday next week in London with the four-day event showcasing cycling-related filmmaking in an attempt to “promote cycling, and arts and the links between”. There are sure to be some terrific films coming out of the festival but in the meantime, here’s a compilation showing a whole bunch of last year’s films.
The Rocacorba Recap
And finally this morning, here are a few things you might have missed this week:
- What effect does age really have on cycling performance?
- Ask Koen de Kort: episode four
- BMC TMR01 review
- Tour of Britain: looking for ways to shine (with pics by Kristof Ramon)
- Rocacorba Daily: Thursday September 26