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VN news ticker: Primož Roglič wins Milano-Torino, Rally Cycling signs Gage Hecht, Bernard Tapie dies

Here's what's making headlines on Wednesday, October 6.

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Primož Roglič wins 102nd Milano-Torino

Primož Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) won the 102nd Milano-Torino on the 189km route from Magenta to Torino (Superga) on Wednesday. The second finisher was Adam Yates (Ineos Grenadiers), while the third was João Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick Step).

“It’s nice to win here, I felt good and I’m happy with this result: I thought the final climb was less hard,” Roglič said. “I can say I’m in good shape and it’s great to have another result after today. Now the main target is Il Lombardia. I’m not the only favorite for Saturday but I’ll give all I have.”

Roglič confirms good form ahead of Saturday’s Il Lombardia. With victory last week at Giro dell’Emilia, the Slovenian will be one of the favorites for victory in the Italian fall monument.

Almeida became the first Portuguese to finish on the podium of Milano-Torino, the oldest race in the world, created in 1876, just 15 years after the unification of Italy.

“The team did a very good race today, we were in the front at the right moment and gave our best,” Almeida said. “Once we split the peloton, we rode full gas and tried to make it really hard for the others. The final climb was extremely difficult and I would have loved to follow Roglic and fight for the win, but it wasn’t possible. Finishing third is a good result and an important boost of confidence for Il Lombardia, where we are motivated to conclude the season on a high note.”

102nd Milano-Torino

1. Primož Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) – 189km in 4h17’41”, average speed 44.240 km/h
2. Adam Yates (Ineos Grenadiers) at 12’’
3. João Almeida (Deceuninck-Quick Step) at 35’’

Rally Cycling signs Gage Hecht for 2022-23

Rally Cycling has signed American Gage Hecht as the first new rider for the 2022 and 2023 seasons. The 23-year-old from Parker, Colorado, signs from the US-based Aevolo team.

The step up to the ProTeam ranks marks the realization of a dream for the multi-talented rider who describes himself as a lover of Classics-style races who isn’t afraid to do his turn for the good of the team.

“It’s always been a dream of mine to race in Europe,” said Hecht. “The team is a really cool platform to make that jump and I’ve heard amazing things about Jonas [Carney] and the rest of the staff about how they treat the riders. I’m really excited to be working with them.”

Team sponsor Bernard Tapie dies at 78

Bernard Tapie, the French tycoon who brought Bernard Hinault and Greg LeMond together in the 1980s, died this weekend. He was 78.

The French business tycoon led a varied and colorful life, including stints as a politician and minister, an owner of a soccer club, a spell in jail, as well as ownership in Adidas and other major companies.

He died at his home after a long bout with cancer, family members confirmed.

One of his most endearing ventures, at least for cycling fans, was his involvement with La Vie Claire, a then-struggling health food chain that today operates more than 350 supermarkets across France.

Tapie created the cycling team that bore the stores’ name in 1984, and the team dominated the Tour de France during its brief but dramatic run in the peloton.

The super-team wore jerseys marked with red, yellow and blue cubes of a Mondrian-inspired kit in what remains one of cycling’s most iconic jerseys.

Bernard Hinault and Greg LeMond won back-to-back editions of the Tour de France during the team’s short but glorious run from 1984-86 under the La Vie Claire banner. Toshiba took over the sponsorship in 1987 until the team’s collapse in 1991.

Tapie, one of France’s most famous (and infamous) business tycoons, also bought Look pedals and helped introduced the first step-in pedals in the peloton.

Marc Reef joins Jumbo-Visma staff

Marc Reef will join Team Jumbo-Visma as a coach, the team announced Wednesday.

Reef worked at Team DSM after more than a decade, and signed for two years with the team of Richard Plugge.

“I want to continue to develop as a coach. I think a new environment can contribute to that. After a number of intensive meetings, I am convinced that I will find such an environment at Team Jumbo-Visma,” he said. “I want to thank Team DSM for their trust and for giving me a chance to start my career as a coach. During that period, including many highlights, I learned a lot. However, now the time has come to take the next steps.”

Ben Healy to join EF Education-Nippo

Ireland’s Ben Healy is set to make his WorldTour debut with EF Education-NIPPO for the 2022 season.

Healy won across the U23 calendar, including stage wins at  Giro Ciclistico d’Italia (the Baby Giro), the Ronde de l’Isard, and both the Irish road and U23 time trial championships, in addition to a slew of top-10 stage and overall results, all since the pandemic began.

“When I started to talk with the team, it was clear the team had a plan for me,” Healy explains. “That meant so much to me. It wasn’t just, ‘Yeah, he’s got a few decent results, might as well just sign him.’ There was thought behind where I’d fit into the team.”

“His skill set is he knows how to get in breaks that make it to the line and he knows how to win out of those breaks once he’s in them,” EF Education-NIPPO CEO Jonathan Vaughters said. “There aren’t that many guys that have that skill set. That’s the skill that Ben’s shown over and over again in the U23 races.”