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Preview: Amstel Gold concludes spring classics

When most people think of Holland, they think cheese, windmills and tulips. Maastricht is all that, plus some surprisingly tough hills, that, when packed in tight make for a formidable challenge for the 36th Amstel Gold Race on Saturday, the fifth leg of the 2001 World Cup. While the hills, or beklimmingen in Dutch, at only a few hundred meters each hardly rival the giants of racing lore, 29 climbs over the 254km (152-mile) course at breakneck World Cup speed can prove punishing. In the tradition of the spring classics, weather forecasts call for a cold, blustery day with a chance

Paolinetti sprints to First Charter win

Jamie Paolinetti thanked all the right people after his win Friday at the First Charter Criterium in Shelby, North Carolina. His sponsors were great. His teammates did their jobs. And, oh yeah, the Saturn team helped out quite a bit too. See, for all but the first few laps, plus the one that counts the most -- the last one -- a Saturn rider was near the front pushing the pace. "Having Saturn up there forced Mercury and Prime Alliance to chase all day," said Paolinetti, who rides for NetZero. "There’s no question that helped at the end because they weren’t around." And at the end it was

A post-Tour criterium in New York in August

A criterium after the Tour of France, in which Lance Amstrong and about sixty American professional racing cyclists will take part, will be organized for the first time in New York in August. This 100 km criterium, informally baptized "The Tour of New York," will be contested on a loop of three streets in lower Manhattan on August 4 and will have a prize list of $50,000 dollars shared among the first 20 finishers. This race, intended like all post-Tour criteriums to appeal to spectators, "will be a great addition to the many sporting events that New York welcomes each year," commented mayor

USA Cycling will not appeal court ruling

The board of directors of USA Cycling has endorsed a staff recommendation to end an appeal of a recent court decision overturning a major set of changes to the organization's by-laws passed in February of 1999. "We will not pursue an appeal in the case," USA Cycling chief operating officer Steve Johnson told VeloNewsThursday. Johnson said that in the course of a Wednesday conference call and follow-up calls on Thursday, the board endorsed a recommendation offered by USA Cycling CEO Lisa Voight and board president Mike Plant. In March, a three-judge Colorado appeals court panel

Hamilton on the road to recovery

For Tyler Hamilton, the 2001 Liége-Bastogne-Liége is probably something best forgotten. Unfortunately for the U.S. Postal Service rider, the reminders of the race will linger for a good part of the spring. Hamilton knows the roads around Liége as well as anyone else and as the peloton neared the small town of Stavelot, he began to move up in anticipation of the approaching climb up the Stockeu. "Everyone was battling really hard for position since it was such a critical part of the race," Hamilton told VeloNews. "A rider on my right side (Euskaltel's Igor Flores) swung drastically to

Leoni wins, Rodriguez fourth in Belgium

Italian Endrio Leoni (Alessio) got the best of the other sprinters at the Scheldeprijs Schoten in northern Belgium on Wednesday, taking his second win in a row at the Belgian one-day race. The race was marked by several crashes, including Mercury-Viatel’s Jans Koerts, whose springtime bad luck continued. Koerts crashed with 50km remaining and was taken to the hospital with numerous cuts and abrasions. After several late-race breakaways were thwarted, the race came down to a mass sprint, and Leoni beat out Lotto’s Jeroen Blijlevens and Fakta’s Kurt-Asle Aversen. Just behind, U.S. champion

Navigators head to Europe

For the first time in three years, the Navigators program will contest a European spring campaign, consisting of races in Belgium, France and Italy. Six members of the team left for Europe on Monday, and they will begin racing Thursday at the Circuit des Mines, April 26-May 1, in France. Following the Shelby and Athens criteriums, five more members of the team will fly over for the remainder of the European schedule: Cras Avernas in Belgium, May 6; Giro d’Abbruzzo in Italy, May 8-13; and GP Stad Vilvoorde in Belgium, May 13, as well as a couple of smaller races in Belgium. Among that second

Bad weather shuts down Swiss Cup race

First it was foot-and-mouth disease in England. Now it’s bad weather in Switzerland. In both cases the outcome is the same: cancelled mountain bike races. The latest casualty is the second race in Switzerland’s Swiss Cup series scheduled for May 6 in Luekerbad. The cancellation came after severe weather in the last few weeks dumped six-and-a-half feet of snow on the upper section of the course, and made other sections inaccessible because of the danger of falling rocks and landslides. This latest cancellation has messed up the schedules of some of the world’s top pros. Thomas Frischknecht