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VN news ticker: Routes altered in final two stages at Paris-Nice, Tony Martin fractures elbow

Here's the news making headlines for Friday, March 12.

Routes altered in final two stages at Paris-Nice

The routes of the last two stages of the Paris-Nice cycling race have been reconfigured to finish outside Nice to avoid a local COVID lockdown, the city mayor Christian Estrosi announced on Friday.

The race, which traditionally finishes on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, will end on Sunday instead of around 40 kilometers north in the town of Levens, which is outside the regional quarantine zone. It will start from the Plan du Var, about 30 kilometers north of Nice, and will take the form of a quasi-loop. Race organizers ASO has yet to publish the technical details.

Saturday’s stage seven, which was due to set off from Nice, will now start from Le Broc and will end as planned in Valdeblore La Colmiane. The area is under its third weekend lockdown following what the Alpes-Maritime regional authority described as “the continuing very worrying” health situation and “extremely high” pressure on the resources of local hospitals.

— AFP 

Tony Martin fractures elbow in Paris-Nice crash

Jumbo-Visma workhorse Tony Martin fractured his elbow in a crash that saw him abandon stage 5 of Paris-Nice on Thursday. The team confirmed that the German veteran will likely be out of action for around a month, forcing him to miss his next scheduled competition at Itzulia Basque Country, April 5-10.

Team leader Primož Roglič was also bought down in the incident at around 30km to go of the sprinter stage in France, though escaped unscathed and is ready to defend his GC lead Friday.

“Luckily everything is fine. It’s just unfortunate because Tony Martin is no longer with us. He hit a plastic pole as he was riding right in front of me on the edge of the road,” Roglič said. “Personally I feel good, we have to continue now. I am excited about the battle of this weekend. It is good to be back .”

vEveresting Academy kicks off on March 13

The Club 3R vEveresting Academy kicks off on Saturday, March, 13, and is a two-week structured program culminating in a group vEveresting day on Alpe du Zwift on May 29th.

Academy training will take place via three weekly group rides led by Club 3R riders who have vEveresting experience.

Those joining the vEveresting Academy are asked to raise funds for at least one WBR Buffalo Bike ($150), or two ($300) for full Everest riders.

The Academy will also be helping to raise funds for World Bicycle Relief. Five dollars will be donated for each Saris purchase online made March 13-27, using the code SARIS+WBR. If you purchase a Saris product elsewhere, you can send a photo of your receipt to advocacy@saris.com to have the $5 made to WBR.

On May 29, the virtual Everesting assault on Alpe du Zwift is planned.

Those who are interested can enroll on the Club 3R Everesting Facebook page.

Everesting requires participants to ride the same virtual or real-life road until the total elevation gain of 8,848 meters (29,032 feet) is achieved.

Ventoux Dénivielé adds women’s race for 2022, double mountain ascent on tap for men in 2021

The Mont Ventoux Dénivelé Challenge will expand to include a women’s race in 2022. Organizers confirmed Thursday that its one-day men’s race would be joined by a women’s event next year, but has yet to confirm further details. The 2021 men’s race will be held June 8 this summer and feature a double-ascent of the Ventoux, first from Sault and then via a summit finish with the climb from Bédoin, accumulating some 4,500m altitude gain over the 155-kilometer route. One month later, the 11th stage of the Tour de France will take on a similar parcours featuring the same two climbs before a descent to the line in Malaucène. The race was last year won by Aleksandr Vlasov (Astana-Premier Tech).