Matthews back on track after Milan-San Remo

Michael Matthews is starting his third season with Team Sunweb in 2019

Despite starting Milan-San Remo with just a day and a half of racing in his legs Michael Matthews ( Team Sunweb ) delivered a dogged, if not successful, performance to finish 12th on the Via Roma. Earlier in the month, the Australian crashed during Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, soldiering on to the finish, but he was forced to abandon Paris-Nice after crashing on the first stage. In fact, Matthews was expected to miss several months of the campaign due his injuries but after another scan of an injured wrist he was given the all-clear on Wednesday to race Milan-San Remo. He was still in contention on the Poggio – despite his lack of race miles – but when Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) unleashed an attacked that formed the winning move, Matthews was forced onto the back foot. A valiant chase saw him come within a few seconds of the lead group, and ...

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High-speed racing on the Poggio means sprinters miss out at Milan-San Remo

Caleb Ewan during Milan-San Remo 2019

The warm spring weather and steady pace for much of Milan-San Remo seemed set to help the sprinters dominate this year’s La Classicissima , but in truth, it led to their downfall. The attackers were still strong and confident on the Poggio, and so able to blow the race apart and share the spoils on the Via Roma. Eventual winner, Julian Alaphilippe ( Deceuninck-QuickStep ) sparked the decisive selection of seven riders in the final kilometre of the Poggio, with only Vincenzo Nibali and Matej Mohoric (Bahrain-Merida), Simon Clarke (EF Education First) and Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) able to get on during the descent and the final flat roads in San Remo. The pure sprinters and their teammates were distanced and dropped, leaving just 11 riders to fight for victory. Few noticed but Alexander Kristoff ( UAE Team Emirates ) won the bunch sprint for 14th place on the Via ...

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Anti-fracking group to protest at Tour de Yorkshire over Team Ineos 'greenwashing'

Anti-fracking group to protest at Tour de Yorkshire over Team Ineos 'greenwashing'

Joe Robinson 21 Mar 2019 Ineos holds the rights to frack for shale gas across multiple sites in Yorkshire The introduction of Team Ineos into the professional peloton at the Tour de Yorkshire is set to be greeted with protests by anti-fracking campaigners. Ineos announced its purchase of Tour Racing Limited , the holding company of Team Sky, on Tuesday with the team to appear in its new guise for the first time at Stage 1 of the Tour de Yorkshire on May 2nd. The multi-billion pound chemical company, headed by Britain's richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe, currently has a license to frack for shale gas across multiple sites in the county of Yorkshire. Ratcliffe is an ardent supporter of fracking and has vocally criticised government efforst to regulate the method of drilling for oil. Ineos is yet to start fracking operations due to planning disputes and protests. Anti-fracking group ...

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Astana’s incredible spring hits crescendo with weekend double-whammy

Astana’s incredible spring hits crescendo with weekend double-whammy

Team Astana has already matched its 2017 win tally in less than three months of racing, finding its groove with young talents and now-healthy veterans. Read the full article at Astana’s incredible spring hits crescendo with weekend double-whammy on VeloNews.com .

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Fuglsang dedicates impressive Tirreno-Adriatico win to Scarponi

Fuglsang dedicates impressive Tirreno-Adriatico win to Scarponi

Jakob Fuglsang soloed to a classy victory on stage 5 of Tirreno-Adriatico, taking Astana's second win in a row at the race, and the team's 19th this season. Mitchelton-Scott's Adam Yates extended his overall lead with a couple of plucky attacks of his own.

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Bernal wins Paris-Nice, Izagirre takes the finale

Bernal wins Paris-Nice, Izagirre takes the finale

Team Sky's Egan Bernal resisted Nairo Quintana to claim the Paris-Nice title after Astana's Ion Izagirre won the final stage in Nice.

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Paris-Nice highlights: Another Colombian battle - Video

Oro y Paz winner Egan Bernal (Team Sky)

The final stage of Paris-Nice was another exciting one, with the yellow jersey once again on the line as Egan Bernal ( Team Sky ) was forced on the defensive after Nairo Quintana ( Movistar ) went on the attack 50km from the line. Quintana bridged up to the breakaway on the Côte de Peille, the same climb that Alberto Contador launched his final stage attacks in 2016 and 2017, and also where his Movistar teammate Marc Soler attacked to win the race last year. With three teammates in the break, Quintana vs Bernal became a mini team time trial as Sky led the remains of the peloton in the chase behind. For some time, Quintana was in the virtual race lead, until it swung back to Bernal on the Col de Quatre Chemins and stayed there. Quintana had been forced to work alone since the 30km to go mark, ...

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Fuglsang: We’re riding the wave; perhaps we can win all season

Jakob Fuglsang riding up the final climb to victory

Jakob Fuglsang was emotional for several different reasons after winning the hilly fifth stage at Tirreno-Adriatico in Recanati. The Danish rider pointed to the sky as he crossed the finish line, remembering his former teammate Michele Scarponi who won Tirreno-Adriatico ten years ago and was tragically killed in 2017. Fuglsang was also happy to have continued Astana’s winning streak and take a win himself after finishing second at last week’s Strade Bianche. “Obviously this win had to be for him,” Fuglsang said of Scarponi, knowing that Monday’s stage finishes in Jesi, just a few kilometres from the Italian's birthplace in Filottrano. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

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Tirreno stage 5: Fuglsang takes second consecutive stage for Astana

Tirreno stage 5: Fuglsang takes second consecutive stage for Astana

Yates strikes out on final climb to extend lead in overall. Read the full article at Tirreno stage 5: Fuglsang takes second consecutive stage for Astana on VeloNews.com .

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Fuglsang solos to victory on stage 5

Jakob Fuglsang celebrates his stage victory

Jakob Fuglsang made it two in a row for Astana at Tirreno-Adriatico, winning the fifth stage. Race leader Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) came in second, with Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) third on the day. Fuglsang jumped from a group of favourites with around 24km to go and worked his way up through the remaining riders from the day’s breakaway. He joined Davide Gaburro (Neri Sottoli) and Nico Denz (AG2R La Mondiale) and eventually dropped them, taking on the final 10 kilometres alone. “We basically planned to try something similar to yesterday. We knew that we had a strong team and we saw yesterday that many other teams were suffering once we really put the pressure on. To wait until the final, it would probably be difficult for us to win so we tried to do the same as yesterday and today it was my turn to go from distance. Luckily it worked ...

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Bernal wins Paris-Nice

The final Paris-Nice podium (L-R) Nairo Quintana, Egan Bernal, Michal Kwiatkowski

Egan Bernal ( Team Sky ) secured overall victory at Paris-Nice after a tense final stage which saw his yellow jersey come under attack by Nairo Quintana (Movistar). Ion Izagirre (Astana) took the stage win in Nice, attacking on the final climb of the day to leave behind the remains of the elite break group led by Quintana. The Spaniard quickly built a stage-winning gap, staying upright on the descent to secure the win, 19 seconds ahead of Oliver Naesen (AG2R La Mondiale) and Wilco Kelderman (Team Sunweb). Quintana, meanwhile, attacked 50km out, echoing similar moves against Team Sky by Alberto Contador in 2016 and 2017. But like the legendary Spaniard, Quintana would fall short. He was the virtual leader at several points, but ended up only taking four seconds on Bernal at the finish. The Movistar man attacked on the Côte de Peille to link up with the remnants ...

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Paris-Nice highlights: A tale of two Colombians - Video

Daniel Martinez (EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale)

The seventh stage of Paris-Nice was a tale of two Colombians as Daniel Martinez ( EF Education First ) claimed the stage win on the Col de Turini and Egan Bernal ( Team Sky ) stepped into the yellow jersey of race leader. The battles for yellow and for the day’s victory were fought separately as a large 39-man breakaway, which included Martinez, escaped up the road over the stage’s early climbs. The peloton kept them at close quarters initially, holding them at around 2:30 for some time, before letting the rope slack. As the stage reached its denouement, the 39 became just four as Martinez went up against Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana), Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and Nicolas Edet (Cofidis). Each took their turn to try and distance his companions, but it was Martinez’s attack under the flame rouge that did the intended damage. The Colombian took six seconds out ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Adam Yates not focused on overall victory as time trial looms

Adam Yates took the Tirreno-Adriatico race lead after stage 2

Adam Yates ( Mitchelton-Scott ) may have narrowly missed out on the victory on stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico , but he came away satisfied with his efforts, taking third place behind miraculous victor Alexey Lutsenko (Astana), while also holding on to the race lead. Sunday’s stage 5 promises another stern test, with seven tough climbs spread out over three laps of a finishing circuit in Recanati. The final hilly stage of the race promises another fierce battle between the top GC contenders, including Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), who finished second in Fossombrone and lies seven seconds back. "I came to Tirreno-Adriatico to win stages," he said at the finish of stage 4. "With no big mountain stages and two time trials, the only chances to gain time are on the steep climbs, but you can never gain a lot on short climbs. "I’m riding Tirreno, Catalunya and País Vasco with the ...

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Lutsenko wins Stage 4 after a crazy day at Tirreno-Adriatico

Lutsenko wins Stage 4 after a crazy day at Tirreno-Adriatico

Astana's Alexey Lutsenko experienced an eventful day at the office as he claimed Stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico.

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Tirreno-Adriatico: 66 riders given virtual times to avoid finishing circuit chaos

The distant hills awaiting the peloton on a lumpy stage at Tirreno-Adriatico

The UCI commissaire were forced to work late into the evening and official race results were only issued three hours after the finish of stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico after 66 riders were stopped from racing the final hilly circuits around Fossombrone and given carefully calculated virtual times for the stage. Chief international commissaire for Tirreno-Adriatico, Luc Herpelinck of Belgium, and his team of race officials were forced to act swiftly during the stage to stop a number of riders being caught by the leading group of riders. If the different groups had come together it would have been very difficult to discern which riders had effectively completed the laps, meaning the stage results would have effectively been falsified. The UCI commissaires took the decision to stop 66 riders from covering the final laps. They then calculated a virtual time for them based on the time taken by the last rider ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Lutsenko gets up from two crashes to win sprint

Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) goes on the attack

Alexey Lutsenko ( Astana ) got back up from two crashes during a solo breakaway to beat Primož Roglič and Adam Yates and win stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico to Fossombrone. The Kazakh understandably dedicated his victory to himself, laughing about how he crashed on the slippy roads of Le Marche - the second time at just 1.5km from the finish – but some how got going again and found the speed to win the four-rider sprint. “I was thinking I just had a win. The last 200 metres were a fight, so I'm happy to be able to pull it off,” Lutsenko explained. “After the first crash I felt pretty bad but got going again, then after the second one, I didn’t understand why I went down but knew I just had to keep fighting. When they passed me at 600 metres to go, I got on Roglič’s wheel. I ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Contrasting emotions for Roglic and Dumoulin after steep climbs spark time gaps

Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) during stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico

Primoz Roglic ( Jumbo-Visma ) and Tom Dumoulin ( Team Sunweb ) post-stage warm down after stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico may have been similar but their sentiments were of stark contrast. The Jumbo-Visma rider was happy to have extended his lead on almost all of his overall rivals, while the Dutchman was clearly disappointed to have lost precious seconds and virtually any chance of overall victory. Roglic finished a close second behind Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) and ahead of race leader Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), but gained 23 seconds on Dumoulin and the other overall contenders. A six-second time bonus narrowed his deficit on Yates to just seven seconds and he extended his overall lead on Dumoulin to 43 seconds, with only Sunday’s stage in the steep Le Marche hills and then Tuesday’s final 10km time trial in San Benedetto del Tronto opportunities to make time back. Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) is fourth ...

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Paris-Nice: Martinez wins on the Col de Turini

It's Daniel Martínez's (EF Education First) first stage victory for the American team

Daniel Martínez ( EF Education First ) won stage 7 of Paris-Nice, triumphing atop the Col de Turini ahead of his compatriot Miguel Ángel Lopez (Astana). Nicolas Edet (Cofidis) finished third, just edging out Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) after a ding-dong battle on the summit finish. The four were the strongest men from a 38-man breakaway, with the quartet forming after Yates and Lopez went on the early slopes of the climb. At various points, Edet, Lopez, Yates and Martínez were alone out front, with the Astana man looking at one point like he’d be on the way to a solo win before a regrouping three kilometres out. Bang under the flamme rouge it was Martínez who laid it all on the line one final time. Lopez went with him, while Yates didn’t have enough to make it across initially. The Brit looked to be making his way up to the ...

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Tirreno-Adriatico: Lutsenko takes dramatic stage 4 win

Alexey Lutsenko wins stage 4 of Tirreno-Adriatico

Alexey Lutsenko ( Astana ) won the fourth stage of Tirreno-Adriatico in dramatic fashion after crashing twice in the final 20 kilometres. The Kazakh rider won from a four-rider sprint but had been almost a minute up the road after attacking solo. He was caught following his second crash inside the final two kilometres, but had just enough left to win the sprint to the line, beating Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) and Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott). Yates kept hold of his overall race lead and has a seven-second advantage over Roglic with Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) now 50 seconds down. “I crashed twice in the last 20km. It made it very difficult for me. Fortunately, there was my teammate, Jakob Fuglsang, in the three-man group behind. I crashed again so I'm really happy that I made up with a stage win for this very bad day. It gives me more motivation for ...

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UCI backtracks on fines after riders threaten to protest

The riders are presented in Dubai

The UCI has backtracked on applying stiff fines and ranking point penalties if riders arrive late at race sign-on after the peloton threatened to go on strike before the final stage of the UAE Tour . The UCI changed the rules of the sign-on protocol for the 2019 season because riders often stayed on their team buses and arrived en-masse in the final minutes before the start of races. That offered little interest to the local crowds and left race organisers embarrassed. Riders were previously obliged to sign on at a specific time on the opening stage of a race. Now race organisers can force teams to respect a time slot on every stage in the 70 minutes before a stage start. UAE Tour organiser RCS Sport issued a daily schedule for the new WorldTour race but several failed to respect their time slots, sparking a strong reaction from the ...

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