Showing fine form heading into the spring classics, Rabobank’s Michael Boogerd won the toughest stage of the Tour of Valencia on a rainy day in Spain. The Dutch World Cup threat won Friday’s 147.2km stage 4, a mountainous journey between Benidorm and Campello pass. Boogerd, who also won the first stage, beat Fabian Jeker of Switzerland, Italian rider Leonardo Piepoli and Alexandre Vinokurov of Kazakhstan in a sprint finish to tighten his grip on the overall lead. Mercatone Uno’s Marco Pantani had failed to start Friday's stage because he was suffering from a high fever and bronchitis.
Boogerd kept the leader's jersey with his second stage win
World champion Zinaida Stahurskaia adds firepower to GAS
Euskatel-Euskadi rider David Etxebarria gave Spanish fans a home win in the third stage of the Tour of Valencia Thurday. The Spaniard won a sprint for the line at the end of the 149.5km stage between Denia and Benidorm. Extebarria outsprinted fellow Spaniard Aitor Gonzalez and an on-form Erik Dekker (Rabobank) to win from the lead group of seven with a time of 3:43:59. Dekker’s teammate and fellow Dutchman Michael Boogerd, who won Tuesday's first stage, holds the overall leader's yellow jersey, ahead of Switzerland’s Fabian Jeker and Italian Leonardo Piepoli. Thursday's stage, featuring
The ever-secretive UCI still hasn’t tipped its hand on where the cancelled Whistler World Cup is going to end up, but talk out of Vancouver is that the Grouse Mountain bid submitted by Gestev Inc. is just days away from being accepted. "It’s not a done deal, but we’re confident, otherwise we wouldn’t be talking about it," said Stuart McLaughlin, president of Grouse Mountain Resorts. "We should have confirmation in the next week or so, and then we really get to work." It’s expected that the Grouse event will retain World Cup "triple" status — hosting cross country, downhill and dual — and
The 2001 Pro Cycling Tour will begin in March on the West Coast and conclude eight months later on the other side of the country in October. The 14-race series will include some of the highest-profile road races in the United States. On Thursday, Threshold Sports unveiled the schedule for the season-long series, which begins March 22 at the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. Among the events returning to the Pro Cycling Tour line-up are the BMC Software series, the First Union Cycling series, the U.S. Postal Service Clarendon Cup and the Chris Thater Memorial. New additions include
Boys of spring: Postal riders Christian Vande Velde (r) and George Hincapie tackled one of Valencia’s climbs.
Boys of spring: Postal riders Christian Vande Velde (r) and George Hincapie tackled one of Valencia's climbs.
For Telekom’s sprint star Erik Zabel, it almost looks too easy. Zabel took stage 2 of the Tour of Valencia in Spain Tuesday, adding to his pile of early season victories by winning a sprint finish in the 179.5km race between Segunto and Denia in eastern Spain. U.S. Postal Service rider George Hincapie finished third, just behind second-placed Biagio Conte of Italy. Rabobank’s Dutch classics rider Michael Boogerd retained the overall lead by finishing sixth. Right behind Boogerd in the overall are Swiss riders Fabian Jeker and Alex Zulle, along with Italian Leonardo Piepoli, all with the
Not too many cyclists get things named for them. There's a Sean Kelly Square in Carrick-on-Suir, Ireland; there's streets named after Tour de France heroes; and the Aussies named their Olympic velodrome for the 1930s track racer Dunc Gray. But these things generally happen after the athlete has retired ... or died. So the naming Wednesday at the Nike world headquarters in Beaverton. Oregon, of the Lance Armstrong Sports & Fitness Center is unusual, to say the least. "It makes me feel kinda old," said the 29-year-old Armstrong, who jetted in with his family Tuesday evening from Santa
Rabobank’s Michael Boogerd won the first stage of the Tour of Valencia on Tuesday, while Telekom’s Jan Ullrich made a last-minute decision to withdraw from the event. Ullrich made his decision on Monday night, and will instead make his season debut at next week’s Tour of Murcia, where Lance Armstrong and Roberto Heras (U.S. Postal) will also kick off the racing season. The first stage of the Tour of Valencia was contested on a 166.5km circuit beginning and ending at Puerto Sagunto. Thirty kilometers from the finish, Swiss Alex Zulle (Coast) set a rhythm up the Cat. 1 Garbi climb that only
Telekom's Erik Zabel won Sunday's 21st edition of the Luis Puig Trophy, 182km from Benidorm to Valencia, Spain. Zabel won the race for the third time in his career, outsprinting Sven Teutenberg (Festina) and U.S. Postal Service's George Hincapie. A trio of Spaniards - Xavier Zandio, Cesar Garcia Calvo and Juan Antonio Flecha - maintained a breakaway of about 100km, but the sprinters' teams held the threesome in check, finally bringing them back with 8km remaining in the race. On Tuesday, the five-day Tour of Valencia will commence, marking the debut for Zabel's teammate, 1997 Tour de France
Despite racing conditions that were better suited for wrestling than riding, Brian Lopes made a triumphant return to serious BMX racing with a win at the mud-marred ABA SoCal Nationals on Febraury 24. Lopes won the AA Pro class race in Ontario, California, then finished second in the Pro Open event. "That was my first real BMX race in two or three years," Lopes said, "It felt good to let everyone know that could still do well in BMX if I want to." In the days leading up to the race, rain had turned the track into a muddy mess, and at one point it looked like the event would be postponed
The story of Italy's most famous and most tortured cyclist Marco Pantani might take another unexpected turn in the not-so-distant future as his team considers putting its top rider into mountain-bike races next year. In a report in Sunday’s Corriere dello Sport Felice Gimondi, the president of Pantani’s Mercatone Uno team was quoted as saying that the “Pirate” might even compete in next year’s world mountain-bike championships. Gimondi, himself a former cycling great, said he believed that the future of the sport lay in mountain biking and said the team was actively considering
After 42 days in the hospital, Fred Mengoni is going home. Friday night will be Mengoni’s last at St. Mary’s Hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida. Saturday a friend will drive him back to his home in New York City. "I am a lucky guy. I could have been dead," said Mengoni, who is considered one of American cycling’s greatest patrons. "For a month I couldn’t even talk. Now I’m walking and talking. I feel great." Back in early January, the 77-year-old Italian born Mengoni crashed his bicycle while trying to avoid an oncoming car. The incident left Mengoni with a broken pelvis, broken ribs,
Good and bad: American Fred Rodriguez was ninth in the final stage but 101st in the overall.
The tangled legal affairs of Italy's most famous cyclist, Marco Pantani, were further complicated on Thursday by two new developments. Forli Judge Luisa Del Bianco, who presided over the case that ended with the 1998 Tour de France and Tour of Italy winner being convicted and sentenced to a three-month suspended prison term on doping-related charges in December, reopened that inquiry because of the disappearance of the cyclist's medical records. In a separate development investigators from Florence, working under the instruction of Ferrara prosecutor Pierguido Soprani, seized files
Dutch cycling ace Erik Dekker won the Ruta del Sol race here on Thursday, easily retaining his lead during the 171km fifth and final stage, which was taken by Spaniard Mickel Artetxe. Dekker, 29, who won three stages in last year's Tour de France, was never troubled by his main challengers on Thursday letting a group of riders, who were not going to challenge for the overall lead, slip away to share out the finish. Dekker first took over the race lead on Monday, when he finished second in stage 2, the 178.5km ride from Sevilla to the mountain finish of Santuario de Nuestra Senora de
French cycling star Laurent Jalabert's immediate career remained in the balance on Thursday, as the rider's release from a Geneva hospital was pushed back, Danish television reported. The 32-year-old leader of Danish team CSC/World Online, fell two meters from a ladder in a freak accident at his home near Geneva last week, fracturing three vertebrae. Team manager, former Tour de France winner Bjarne Riis, said on Thursday he would be travelling to Geneva to discuss plans for Jalabert's physiotherapy and in a bid to rebuild his morale. Jalabert, cycling's world No. 1 for
Problems mounting: Pantani is facing several legal battles.
Slovenian Martin Hvastija (Alessio) took the fourth stage of the Ruta del Sol in Spain on Wednesday — a 175km run from Cabra to Benalmadena. Hvastja finished in a time of 4:39.27. Leonardo Piepoli (iBanesto.com) was 27 seconds back in second, while Dave Bruylandts (Domo-Farm Frites) was third, 48 seconds off the pace. There were no changes in the overall standings, as Rabobank’s Erik Dekker finished 10th, maintaining his lead. Rabobank teammate Marc Wauters remained second, six seconds back of Dekker, while Kazakhstan’s Aleksandr Sheffr (Alessio) is still third, trailing by nine seconds.
Up they go: The Spanish countryside provided pleasant scenery.
German Erik Zabel (Telekom) won a sprint to capture the third stage of the Ruta del Sol on Tuesday. But in the overall standings Erik Dekker (Rabobank) was able to preserve his lead, staying six seconds ahead of Belgium Marc Wauters. Kazakhstan’s Aleksandr Sheffr, Belgian Andrei Tchmil, and German Jan Schaffrath round out the top five in the general classification. The stage was an 180km ride between Luque and Jaen. Zabel was the overall winner of the race in 1997. Max Van Heeswijk of The Netherlands and Italian Endrio Leoni finished second and third in Tuesday’s stage. Tomorrow’s 175km
Alcala de La Real creates a nice backdrop for the Ruta.
The three-day Valley of the Sun stage race in Phoenix, Arizona, February 16-18, saw Mercury complete a three-stage sweep in the men’s Pro-I race, while Canadian Genevieve Jeanson continued her early-season preparations by winning the women’s title. Mercury’s Derek Bouchard-Hall won the opening time trial, and Aussie teammate Baden Cooke rounded out the weekend by winning the road race, criterium and overall title. Jeanson meanwhile won the time trial and road race. AutoTrader.com’s Tina Mayolo took second in the road race and first in the criterium, and her time bonuses allowed her to
Italian cyclist Mirko Celestino, riding for the Saeco team, won Tuesday's Trofeo Laigueglia, a 173km run starting and finishing in the town of that name. It was an all-Italian podium with last year's winner Daniele Nardello of the Mapei team finishing second, and Davide Rebellin, of the Liquigas outfit, in third. The 26-year-old Celestino, who joined Saeco from the now defunct Polti outfit, nipped his rivals in a sprint finish to clinch victory in the race that has historically been the curtain-raiser on the Italian cycling season, though other races have already been staged this
French cyclist Laurent Jalabert, who’s been in the hospital for the last week after falling off a ladder at his home, and fracturing three vertebrae in his lower back, could be heading home soon, according to his CSC-World Online team. But for now doctors at the hospital in Geneva have suggested Jalabert stick around at least a few more days. "The most important thing is that he returns to normal life," said CSC director Johnny Weltz. "It’s not much fun to stay in the hospital. But it’s necessary to keep him there for a few more days, and look after these fractures that can't be
Rabobank’s Erik Dekker took over the overall lead at the Ruta del Sol Monday after finishing second to Kazakhstan's Aleksandr Sheffr (Alessio) in the race’s second stage. Fellow Rabobank rider Marc Wauters was third, while Andrei Tchmil (Lotto) and Jan Schaffrath (Telekom) were fourth and fifth. Strong winds during the early part of the stage made for few attacks during the 178.5km ride from Sevilla to the mountain finish of Santuario de Nuestra Senora de Araceli. Dekker, Tchmil, Sheffr, and Mikhailov didn’t try their move until the stage’s final climb. Sheffr was the strongest, pulling
Davide Rebellin (Liquigas) repeated his victory at the Tour of the Mediterranean as the five-day, six-stage season-opening stage race ended in Marseilles on Sunday, while Estonian Jaan Kirsipuu (AG2R) took his second stage win in as many days. Rebellin moved into the yellow jersey on Saturday, after race leader Ivan Basso crashed and then abandoned at the end of stage 4. Copyright AFP2001
Spaniard Diaz Lobato (Jazztel) survived a 120km breakaway effort to win the opening stage of Spain’s season-opening Ruta Del Sol. Diaz Labato slipped off the front of the peloton only 28km into the day’s 148.5km stage around the southern city of Cordova. Building an advantage that exceeded 15 minutes; Diaz Labato triggered a chase when the race’s powerhouse teams finally realized that he stood a real chance of taking a stage win. With Deutsche Telekom, Rabobank and Festina in pursuit, Diaz Labato still managed to hold on to a significant lead finishing 1:43 ahead of Deutsche Telekom’s Jan
Lanfranchi's yellow jersey was only one of many Mapei prizes.
On his own. Pedro Diaz Lobato went early and stayed away.
The 2001 Tour de Langkawi has ended. After 12 stages and 1836 kilometers, Paolo Lanfranchi has led Mapei-Quick Step to a clean sweep of the overall awards. The final stage was anti-climactic, as expected, with the 7.6-kilometer circuit in downtown Kuala Lumpur, which the riders covered 12 times, not having any effect on the overall standings. Federico Colonna of Cantina Tollo took the field sprint to win the final stage.
Paolo Bettini (Mapei-Quick Step) became the fourth rider to win two stages in the 2001 Tour de Langkawi, consolidating his lead in the green jersey points competition, while his team mate Paolo Lanfranchi easily finished in the pack, protecting his yellow jersey.
Thousands of mourners gathered in the Basque village of Berango Saturday to pay homage to Spanish cyclist Ricardo Otxoa who was killed during a training accident on Thursday. ]The cyclist's twin brother and Kelme teammate Javier, who finished 13th overall in last year's Tour de France and won the 10th stage, remains in a coma in hospital here. The brothers had been training on a small frontage road when they were hit by a car as they trained at Cartama in the southern province of Malaga. Ricardo, 26, died on his way to hospital and is to be buried later Saturday. Javier is
Liquigas’s Davide Rebellin (Liquigas), winner of the 2000 Tour Méditerranéen, took over the lead of this year’s edition from Ivan Basso (Fassa Bartolo) after Basso suffered a crash in the first of Saturday’s two stages, a 108km race from Aigues Mortes to Beziers. The day’s stage wins were still the property of the peloton’s top sprinters as Gabriel Balducci (Tacconi) and Jaan Kirsipuu (AG2R) won stages four and five respectively.Rebellin moved from second overall after Basso’s crash and now holds an eight second advantage over David Moncoutie and 23 seconds over Laurent Brochard.Basso was the
Basso - seen here in stage 2 -- lost the lead after a hard crash on stage 4
Wherry moved up two spots with a strong time trial
Spanish cyclist Javier Otxoa (Kelme) remained in critical condition on Friday from massive injuries received during a training accident that also killed his twin brother and teammate Ricardo, a hospital spokesman said. The 26-year-old, who finished 13th overall in last year's Tour de France and won the 10th stage on the strength of a long solo breakaway, was being treated in the intensive care unit of a Malaga hospital with serious injuries to his head, back and possibly his spinal chord, the hospital's intensive care chief Juan Antonio Benitez said. Otxoa was having difficulty
Paolo Lanfranchi (Mapei-Quick Step) has weathered the last serious threat to winning his second Tour de Langkawi by surviving the stage 10 time trial, while his team mate Paolo Bettini has moved into second and Chris Wherry salvaged some Mercury-Viatel pride with a superb ride that jumped him up two places into third overall. Australian Nathan O'Neill (Ceramiche Panaria) took the stage to give his team their third victory of the Tour.
Olympic bronze medallist and one-time Linda McCartney team leader Max Sciandri is set to sign a two-year contract with the Italian Lampre team early next week, according to a news release issued by the McCartney squad’s former press officer John Deering.Sciandri and Deering were among a large group of riders and staff let go as Britain’s top pro road team collapsed last month under financial pressures. The team, once thought to be recruiting its way to Division I status, fell apart after failing to secure a major secondary sponsor and receiving only limited from its title sponsor, Linda
La Française des Jeux’s sprinter Jimmy Casper took the third stage of the Tour of the Mediterranean, a 127km race between Gréasque and Salon-de-Provence, on Friday. Casper outsprinted a tough field of top sprinters, beating Czech Jan Svorada of Lampre and AG2R’s Jaan Kirsipuu, the Estonian who lead the opening week of the 1999 Tour de France. Ivan Basso (Fassa Bortolo) maintained his hold on the overall standings with a four-second advantage over Liquigas’s Davide Rebellin. American David Clinger finished 8th in Friday’s bunch sprint, while Bobby Julich (Credit Agricole) holds on to
As Frankie Andreu stood outside Tucson’s Westin La Paloma hotel on January 11, he looked introspective. For the first time in 13 years, he wasn’t suited up, heading off into the sunshine on a crisp, bright morning with the rest of his pro team colleagues. Instead, Andreu was in jeans and a windbreaker, watching the U.S. Postal Service squad start its first group ride of 2001. At that moment, a chapter in North American cycling closed. Andreu was officially starting a new career as Postal’s domestic program directeur sportif — thus ending a racing career that began in 1989 with America’s
The U.S. Postal Service team opened its 2001 season at the Tour of Algarve, a five-day, five-stage event in Portugal that ended Thursday in Loule. In a press release issued Thursday, the team’s assistant director sportif Dirk Demol reported that the squad is showing good form and riding better than they were at this time last year. Led by Viatcheslav Ekimov's 10th place finish in the overall standings, 25 seconds behind overall winner Andrea Ferrigato (Alessio), the Postals turned in a strong performance for their first race of the season, said Demol. George Hincapie finished sixth in
You’re on a descent, hitting speeds over 40 mph, with a 90-degree turn at the bottom. Suddenly, your glasses fog up.... If you’re a cyclist who wears glasses or contact lenses, you’re well aware of the special problems you face in a sport where clear vision is critical. Cyclists are exposed to a great deal of wind, which often carries debris. If this debris lodges itself underneath a contact lens, it can cause severe discomfort and affect your vision and depth perception — not something you want during training or racing. Eyeglasses offer an alternative to contacts, but they can get dirty,
Hand-off. Bettini lost his yellow jersey, but it was to teammate Lanfranchi.
How far the mighty... Koerts, once in yellow, found himself racing the clock. He lost.
Paolo Lanfranchi (Mapei-Quick Step) was the substitute rider for an ill Andrea Tafi at the Tour de Langkawi. So far this 'substitute' has won both mountain stages and taken the yellow leaders jersey from team mate Paolo Bettini. Meanwhile, Mercury miscalculated big time by not paying attention to the time cutoff and losing Jans Koerts, Gord Fraser and Henk Vogels. The Genting Highlands stage - this year stage 9 - is legendary. After a 107 kilometer run up the riders face a 25 kilometer Hors Category climb that averages 8 percent and max's out at over 15percent. In the past, riders such as
Australian Robbie McEwen (Domo) took the second stage of the 28th Mediterranean Tour on Thursday, finishing the 139km stage between La Garde and La Seyne by outsprinting Estonian Jaan Kirsipuu and France’s Damien Nazon. Fassa Bortolo’s Ivan Basso maintains his lead over Liquigas’s Davide Rebellin in the overall standings. The finishing sprint was marked by serious crash in which Basso’s teammate, Alessandro Pettacchi suffered a broken collarbone.
Spanish rider Ricardo Otxoa was killed Thursday in a training accident while his twin brother and Kelme team mate Javier was taken to hospital with serious injuries, a team spokesman said. The two racers were hit by a vehicle as they trained at Cartama in the southern province of Malaga. Ricardo died on the spot while Javier, winner of the 10th stage of last year's Tour de France, suffered serious injuries to his head and body and was reported to be in a coma. Copyright AFP2001
French cycling star Laurent Jalabert has started walking, just two short days after breaking three vertebrae in a freak accident, his team boss said Wednesday. While changing a light bulb, Jalabert fell six feet from a ladder at his home near Geneva, Switzerland, on Monday, fracturing three vertebrae and putting the 32-year-old's immediate career plans on hold. Hospital officials in Geneva have declined to comment on Jalabert's condition, but the CSC-World Online team manager Bjarne Riis said Jalabert’s injuries are a cause of great concern. "Something serious has happened to him,"
The mountains have spoken and the Tour de Langkawi has a new leader Paolo Bettini (Mapei-Quick Step). Bettini finished third in the frontgroup of four, behind his teammate Paolo Lanfranchi and Pascal Hervé(Alexia Alluminio), and ahead of American Chris Wherry (Mercury-Viatel). The riders faced 154 kilometers on stage 8 from Kuala Kubu Baru to Tanah Rata, climbing 2000 meters over the final 53 kilometers. There were a few attempts to get away before the climb, but Mapei and Mercury quickly brought them back, so that at the start of the first KoM (King of the Mountain) the peloton was
Fassa Bortolo’s Yvan Basso took the opening stage of the 28th Mediterranean Tour, stage between Antibes (the Alpes-Maritimes) and Mount Faron in the hills of the Cote d’Azur.Basso took charge on the final climb, a six-kilometer ascent of Mount Faron. 1. Ivan Basso (I) Fassa Bortolo, 3:13:252. Davide Rebellin (I) Liquigas, s.t.3. David Moncoutie (F) Cofidis, at 0:014. Laurent Brochard (F) Jean Delatour, at 0:165. Francisco Mancebo (Sp) Banesto, at 0:19
The duel between Hervé and Lanfranchi set the stage for a Mapei win.
Mercury-Viatel brought along plenty of climbing talent.
The U.S. Postal team and the management of Kelme have settled their differences over payment terms for the remainder of Spanish rider Roberto Heras’s contract, Kelme’s manager told the French wire service AFP on Tuesday. The U.S. Postal, led by two-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, bought out Heras' contract with the Spanish team which had been due to expire in 2002, Juan Mas said. Heras had been due to join US Postal last October but the two teams had been unable to agree terms. Last month, Kelme announced Heras would be staying at the Spanish team for the upcoming season, a
Ivan Quaranta (Alexia Alluminio) finally got on the winner's podium, but unfortunately a large crash marred the end of stage 7 at the Tour de Langkawi. Jans Koerts (Mercury Viatel) finished second and continues to hold the yellow jersey after the last stage before the mountains. The 172-kilometer stage from Melaka to Klang (on the outskirts of KualaLumpur) had a profile like a saw blade. None of the rollers wasparticularly long, but with over 1100 kilometers on their legs, and twomajor climbing stages to come, no one was in the mood for a fast run.
Laurent Jalabert will be off of his bike for at least a month after fracturing three vertebrae in a freak accident while changing a light bulb in his home in Geneva, Switzerland late Monday. The 32-year-old Jalabert was taken to a nearby hospital where doctors diagnosed the fractures in his lower back during a CAT scan on Tuesday. Jalabert was changing a light bulb when he lost his balance and fell. The one-time world’s number one is a member of the Danish CSC team — a team that most recently competed under the sponsorship of the computer component manufacturer Memory Card. The team is
Mercury-Viatel's Koerts holds a 42-second lead over Quaranta
After nearly two decades and seven world titles astride those venerable Ritchey steel frames, the Ritchey-Yahoo! Squad will not be riding Tom’s bikes in 2001. Thomas Frischknecht — 1996 world cross-country champion — and Martino Fruet will not only be riding bikes from other builders, it looks like they’ll be riding — GASP! — aluminum frames. Frishi for one, however, will have to wait a bit before racing on the scandium Scott that he is having built. Doctors have told him that he’ll be unable to race for at least a month after a February 7 training ride accident resulted in a dislocated joint
Red Zinger Bicycle Challenge race director Len Pettyjohn, said Monday that the 2001 edition of the race is “a 100-percent certainty,” though the event will probably take place under the name of a new title sponsor. Pettyjohn told VeloNews that he would be ready to announce the identity of the race’s new title sponsor within a month. He, however, did offer one hint, noting that this year’s winner “will probably be driving home in a new car,” from a race now scheduled for August 11. Pettyjohn was also the director of the former Mercury Tour, a mountain-bike stage race in Steamboat, Colorado,