The audacity of Julian Alaphilippe

Julian Alaphilippe rose over the penultimate pitch of La Planche des Belles Filles, through a cloud of churned dust and headlights, alone in the frame. Inside the slim gap between his arrival and that of Geraint Thomas lived a moment where anything seemed possible. Even Julian Alaphilippe winning the Tour de France. Julian Alaphilippe will … The post The audacity of Julian Alaphilippe appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Tour de France: 'He races on emotion' says Lefevere of Alaphilippe

Julain Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) solos to victory during stage 3 at the Tour de France

"Cycling wouldn't be what it is if we didn't have riders like Julian, who race on emotion," said Deceuninck-QuickStep manager Patrick Lefevere following Julian Alaphilippe 's win on stage 3 of the Tour de France in Epernay on Monday – which was enough to also take the yellow jersey. Alaphilippe is enjoying his best season yet – already, at this point of the year, more successful than his breakout 2018 season, when his wins included Flèche Wallonne, the Clasica San Sebastian and two stages at the Tour. This year, the Frenchman's victories already include Strade Bianche, Milan-San Remo and a second Flèche. Now, just three days into the 2019 Tour, he has another stage win, and cycling's ultimate prize on his shoulders. Additionally, Lefevere recently persuaded the 27-year-old to re-sign for another two years with the team he joined in 2014. With interest from a number of other WorldTour teams, ...

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Ten riders with something to prove at the 2019 Tour de France

Pressure. The Tour de France presses down on everyone, but even more so if you have something to prove. From established veterans needing to prove they’ve still got the fire to riders making long-awaited Tour debuts, there are plenty of big names that head into this Tour de France with something to prove, for one … The post Ten riders with something to prove at the 2019 Tour de France appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Matthews extends with Sunweb through to 2021

Australian Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) takes part in a press conference in Waregem prior to the s

Michael Matthews has signed a two-year contract extension with Team Sunweb , staying with the team until the end of the 2021 season. Chad Haga and Cees Bol have both also put pen to paper on similar deals. News of the renewals was revealed at Team Sunweb's pre- Tour de France press conference in the Netherlands on Wednesday. Matthews is going into the race with something of a free role, and last week reacted to team leader Tom Dumoulin's absence by saying he was "totally confused" and didn't know "where to go from here". Matthews appeared to question the team's approach, noting the manager had "told us from the start of the year that we shouldn’t have any ambitions ourselves – it's just everything for the yellow", leading to question marks over his future, but he signed a new deal ahead of the Tour. "I'm very happy to be with ...

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Alejandro Valverde extends contract with Movistar until 2021

Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)

Alejandro Valverde has agreed to race on with the Movistar team until the end of 2021, when he is expected to finally retire and take up an ambassador and development role for at least three years with the Spanish WorldTour team. Valverde and Movistar confirmed the contract news in Murcia as Valverde prepared to ride Sunday’s Spanish national road race championships. He was forced to miss this year’s Giro d’Italia after crashing before this year’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège and suffering a bone edema in his sacrum. But after winning the recent La Route d'Occitanie, Valverde confirmed he will ride the Tour de France alongside Nairo Quintana and Mikel Landa, with the Vuelta a Espana also part of his 2019 schedule. Valverde turned 39 in April and plans to target the road race event at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics before his swansong season. “I’m so happy with this extension. Everyone knows the Movistar ...

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ASO's Fleche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege included in 2020 Women's WorldTour

UCI Women's Teams racing on the 2019 Women's WorldTour

The UCI announced the 22 races that will make up the 2020 Women's WorldTour that will include Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège, despite ASO's recent threat to pull the two races from the top-tier calendar if they were forced to provide the 45 minutes of live TV coverage mandated by the UCI. The UCI confirmed in its announcement, however, that all organisers had accepted the new criteria for the Women's WorldTour reforms. That would suggest that ASO is now onboard with the 45 minutes of live TV coverage, but a representative of ASO told Cyclingnews earlier this month that the issue surrounding mandatory live TV coverage was still a 'work-in-progress'. The UCI also told Cyclingnews earlier this month that the discussion over mandatory TV coverage is on-going but that mandatory live TV coverage would remain part of the criteria for being a Women's WorldTour event. "In line with our strategy to ...

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Tour de France 2019: route and stage analysis

Tour de France 2019 stages written in black and white text on a yellow background

A stage by stage breakdown of the official Tour de France route for 2019, including profiles, detailed descriptions and which riders to watch

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Cadel’s Race promoted to Women’s WorldTour

Supported by The women’s Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race has been promoted to WorldTour level for 2020. The one-day race, officially the Deakin University Elite Women’s Road Race, is the first event in the Southern Hemisphere to join the top tier of women’s road cycling since the Women’s WorldTour began in 2016. The UCI confirmed the … The post Cadel’s Race promoted to Women’s WorldTour appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Fuglsang backed by 'strong and experienced' Astana team at Tour de France

Jakob Fuglsang on the final Dauphine podium

Critérium du Dauphiné winner Jakob Fuglsang will lead a strong Astana team at the Tour de France, with Alexey Lutsensko, Pello Bilbao and Gorka Izagirre among the supporting cast. The eight-man roster is completed by Canada's Hugo Houle, Omar Fraile, Magnus Cort and Luis Leon Sanchez, giving the Kazakhstani team options for stage victories. "With this strong and experienced team, we are ready to fight for the best possible result," Astana manager Dmitriy Fofonov said in a statement released by the team. Although Fuglsang’s best-ever placing in a Grand Tour remains his 7th place on the 2013 Tour de France, he has added his name to the list of favourites for this year’s race after a remarkable sequence of performances and results so far in 2019. Fuglsang soloed to victory at Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April and finished on the podium at Strade Bianche, Amstel Gold Race, Flèche Wallonne and Tirreno-Adriatico. The ...

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The weekly spin: Jakob Fuglsang’s last, best chance to win the Tour de France

Can a veteran rider well into his thirties who has never stood on a Grand Tour podium win the Tour de France? It happened last year with Geraint Thomas — another rider who had not historically been the strongest climber nor time trialist, but was always capable at both — and it could well happen … The post The weekly spin: Jakob Fuglsang’s last, best chance to win the Tour de France appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Van Vleuten trains on Passo Gavia ahead of Giro Rosa

Annemiek Van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) is the leader of the Giro Rosa after stage 7

Annemiek van Vleuten ( Mitchelton-Scott ) has finished putting the final touches on her form ahead of the Giro d'Italia Internazionale Femminile held from July 5-14. The defending champion just completed a mountainous training block that included a preview of the Passo di Gavia. "Giro Gavia-Mortirolo with Dutch-Ozzie bunch," van Vleuten wrote in a post on Twitter, which included images of her training companions Amanda Spratt and Lucy Kennedy (both MItchelton-Scott) and Lucinda Brand (Sunweb). "Cool to train together. All preparing for @GiroRosaIccrea at altitude around Livigno/Trepalle." Giro Gavia-Mortirolo with Dutch-Ozzie bunch. Cool to train together. All preparing for @GiroRosaIccrea at altitude around Livigno/Trepalle. — Annemiek van Vleuten (@AvVleuten) June 19, 2019 This year's race will be one of the toughest editions because it features summit finishes on the Passo di Gavia (stage 5) and at Malga Montasio (stage 9), while there will also be a tough hilltop finale ...

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Chris Horner joins NBC's Tour de France broadcast team

Chris Horner (RadioShack) after his TT win

Chris Horner will move from the bicycle seat to the broadcaster's chair this July for the Tour de France , joining the on-air team for the American NBC Sports television network during the French Grand Tour. "I'm going back to the Tour," a typically upbeat Horner told Cyclingnews Friday evening from his home in Bend, Oregon, where he had just completed a 144km ride earlier in the day. Horner will be part of NBC Sports' daily 'traveling studio' for the three-week race, providing analysis and interviews before and after each stage. Paul Burmeister will return to host the studio segments, with retired US pro Christian Vande Velde also reprising his analyst role, according to an announcement published on the NBC Sports website . Vande Velde and Horner will also be called upon to add to the the play-by-play coverage from Bob Roll, who will move from the studio to call ...

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The weekly spin: Kate Courtney and the joy of wearing rainbow stripes

Joyful. That’s the word Kate Courtney chooses to describe her experience thus far wearing the rainbow jersey of world champion. It helps, of course, that she’s been winning while wearing the rainbow jersey. Winning a world title, as Courtney did in Switzerland in September, can be a career-defining accomplishment. Winning in the rainbow jersey, as Courtney … The post The weekly spin: Kate Courtney and the joy of wearing rainbow stripes appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Lambrecht hunting stage success at the Criterium du Dauphine

Bjorg Lambrecht (Lotto Soudal) was part of the breakaway at the opening stage of Criterium du Dauphi

At the opening stage of the 2019 Critérium du Dauphiné , Bjorg Lambrecht ( Lotto Soudal ) attacked the main general classification group on the final ascent of Cote de Roquenatou, bridging across to the remaining duo of the day's breakaway, Magnus Cort (Astana) and compatriot Oliver Naesen (AG2R La Mondiale). The three riders worked well together on the descent and rolling run-in to Jussac, before being caught in the final kilometre, where Edvald Boasson Hagen took a fifth career stage win at the race. Lotto Soudal announced on Thursday that the WorldTour team had extended the contract of 22-year-old Belgian for another two seasons and with top-ten finishes at Brabantse Pijl, Amstel Gold Race and Flèche Wallonne, Lambrecht continues to show his pedigree. "In the beginning, I wasn't feeling really good," Lambrecht told Cyclingnews as he warmed down on a turbo trainer outside his team bus. "In the final, ...

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Alaphilippe lights up Criterium du Dauphine

Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) at the opening stage at the Criterium du Dauphine

Julian Alaphlippe ( Deceuninck-QuickStep ) blew the cobwebs away with a familiar attacking approach on stage 1 of the Critérium du Dauphiné . The Frenchman had not raced since Liège-Bastogne-Liège in late April and a phenomenal spring campaign that included wins in Flèche Wallonne, Strade Bianche, and Milan-San Remo. However, he was on the attack on home soil as he and his team looked to split the race on the opening stage between Aurillac and Jussac. Deceuninck lifted the pace on the final climb of the day with Zdenek Stybar putting in a ferocious turn of speed on the lower slopes of the Cote de Roquenatou. On his wheel was Alaphilippe, who took over once the former cyclo-cross rider emptied the tank. The Frenchman's following assault strung out the remnants of the peloton, with Team Ineos' Chris Froome and Michal Kwiatkowski among the first to make contact. Although the pace ...

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Women's Tour favourites: Our pick of the riders to watch

Maria David 7 Jun 2019 Our picks for the racers who could make their mark at the Ovo Energy Women’s Tour Scenic Suffolk will be the setting on Monday for the start of the 6th Ovo Energy Women’s Tour . The first stage will see the 96 competitors roll out for a 157.6km race from Beccles to finish with a sprint into Stowmarket. This year’s event has been lengthened to six stages and deemed to be the toughest edition yet, with riders covering 790km and climbing a total of 8,400m over the six days. Two of the stages will be around 160km, while other stages will be similar at 142km. There will be a 64km 'respite' for a circuit race at the Cyclopark, Gravesend, and the final stage will be a mere 125km, culminating in an unprecedented summit finish in Pembrey Country Park, Wales, a week on Saturday. This Women’s ...

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Dan Martin returns to racing at the Criterium du Dauphine

Dan Martin surrounded by UAE Team Emirates teammates.

Dan Martin will lead UAE Team Emirates at the Critérium du Dauphiné June 9-16 in what is considered a dress rehearsal for the Tour de France in July. The Irishman has twice placed on the podium in the French WorldTour event but is a dark horse this year, having not raced since Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April. "Dauphiné is a race I always enjoy," Martin said in a team press release. "Racing on the French roads against a high-level competition is the perfect preparation for the Tour de France." Ahead of the Ardennes Classics, Martin revealed that he had been suffering from an illness since the Vuelta al País Vasco in early April. He started Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège but didn’t finish either race. He has had previous success at the Critérium du Dauphiné, finishing third in 2016 behind overall winner Chris Froome and runner-up Romain Bardet, and he was third in ...

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Lotto Soudal secure up-and-coming star Lambrecht for another two seasons

Lotto Soudal's Bjorg Lambrecht tells the press how he climbed to fourth place at the 2019 Flèche Wal

Bjorg Lambrecht has signed for a further two years with Lotto Soudal , which will keep the 22-year-old at the Belgian WorldTour team until at least the end of 2021. The Belgian youngster only turned pro with the squad last season, having moved up from their under-23 feeder team, but a string of good results – including fourth at Flèche Wallonne and sixth at Amstel Gold earlier this season – have led the management team to move quickly to secure his services for a further two years. Lambrecht won a stage at the Tour des Fjords last May in his debut season in the pro ranks, and went on to start his first Grand Tour at the Vuelta a España. He then took the silver medal at the under-23 world championship road race in Austria in September, behind Switzerland's Marc Hirschi, to cap off an extremely productive first year. "It ...

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Alaphilippe and Gilbert return to action at Criterium du Dauphine

Julian Alaphilippe thumps the air after winning Milan-San Remo 2019

Deceuninck-QuickStep 's Julian Alaphilippe and Philippe Gilbert will return to racing action on Sunday for the start of the Critérium du Dauphiné stage race in France – one of the two traditional routes to the Tour de France. While the team's Tour de France GC hopeful Enric Mas will head to the Tour de Suisse, which starts the day before the end of the Dauphiné, Alaphilippe and Gilbert head to this year's Grande Boucle on the hunt for stage wins, with the Dauphiné signalling the start of the second half of both riders' seasons. The pair last raced at Liège-Bastogne-Liège in April, having both won races earlier that month: Paris-Roubaix in Gilbert's case, while Alaphilippe won Flèche Wallonne. Gilbert has also won a stage of the Tour de la Provence this season, while Alaphilippe's nine victories already this year include Milan-San Remo and Strade Bianche. They will have similar roles ...

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Alaphilippe renews with Deceuninck-Quickstep for two more years

Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) attends a press conference on April 19 ahead of the Amstel

Julian Alaphilippe announced on Saturday he has renewed with Patrick Lefevere's Deceuninck-Quickstep squad for two more years in a post on Instagram. The winner of Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche and La Flèche Wallonne was one of the hottest riders at the end of his contract this season, and was rumored to be in negotiations with Total-Direct Energie. Last month, Lefevere said he hoped he could keep Alaphilippe, telling Cyclingnews he sent an offer to the Frenchman's agent. "I don’t know if he will stay, but of course I hope it. It’s all about money ," Lefevere said at the time. Alaphilippe has been one of the cornerstones of the Belgian squad's Classics team, taking wins in the 2018 Flèche Wallonne and Clasica San Sebastian in addition to this year's victories, and a podium in Il Lombardia in 2017. The 26-year-old has been with Lefevere since turning professional in 2014. View ...

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