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This Week in Pro Cycling – September 28, 2007

Dear Readers, Welcome to this week's edition of The Prologue, a regular summary of the news from the world of competitive cycling by your friends at VeloNews.com. As you know the world's championships are now underway in Stuttgart, Germany, and as of Thursday, the time trial events are done and attention now turns to this weekend's road races. Be sure to check in on Sunday for Live Updates from the elite men's event on VeloNews.com

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Dear Readers,

Welcome to this week’s edition of The Prologue, a regular summary of the news from the world of competitive cycling by your friends at VeloNews.com.

As you know the world’s championships are now underway in Stuttgart, Germany, and as of Thursday, the time trial events are done and attention now turns to this weekend’s road races. Be sure to check in on Sunday for Live Updates from the elite men’s event on VeloNews.com

Things got started with an interesting combination of time trial wins by cyclo-cross specialists Lars Boom (left) and Hank Kupfernagel as the two scored impressive wins in the men’s U-23 event and the women’s race against the clock.

On Thursday, Fabian Cancellara rode just as impressively as he did a year ago and nailed the time trial, defending his world title. [More]

Of course, as is traditional these days, a major cycling event can never get off the ground without a healthy dose of controversy and, among other issues, the organizers of the Stuttgart world’s challenged the UCI’s decision to allow Paolo Bettini to compete despite his refusal to sign a pledge to provide DNA samples to Operacion Puerto investigators. On Friday, a regional court in Stuttgart rejected the request for an injunction, so Bettini will be riding to defend his world title on Sunday. [More]

One rider to watch on Sunday, of course, is the man who has come close to scoring wins all season. Cadel Evans spoke with Andrew Hood about his almost season and how he might want to close it off with a major victory. [More]

Meanwhile, here in the U.S. the cycling world is gathering in Las Vegas to attend the Interbike Trade Show, an event that now includes a healthy dose of bike racing on the side. On Wednesday, the mud-and-barrier crowd assembled for the first-ever CrossVegas and on Thursday, the fast-twitchers in the peloton got together for an evening criterium at the Mandalay Bay hotel/casino for the inaugural Vegas World Criterium championships Okay, okay, only in Las Vegas can you get away with calling a criterium in a parking lot a “world championship,” but it was fun.

Speaking of grand plans, we received an interesting press release the other day from the organizers of something called “The Tour of America” a planned event with an $11 million prize list, 27 stages and – gulp – 7520km of racing. Yeah, we know, that’s twice the distance of the Tour de France, but organizer Frank Arokiasamy says the idea isn’t as nutty as it might initially appear. We’re skeptical, too, but let’s give it a chance.

Finally, I’d like to thank all of you who took the time to answer our questionnaire last week. We’re reviewing your comments, taking them to heart and expect to make changes to reflect your needs in the very near future.

Have a good week,

Charles Pelkey
Editor, VeloNews.com
CPelkey@insideinc.com