UAE Team Emirates: Pogacar is trying to win the whole Tour of California

UAE Team Emirates' Tadej Pogacar leads the best young rider competition after stage 3 of the 2019 To

Tadej Pogačar is one of the biggest up-and-coming talents in pro cycling, and upper management at UAE Team Emirates want to keep him within their grasp. He's currently competing for the title at the Tour of California , and although some would like to see what he could do at a Grand Tour, the team's director, Neil Stephens, told Cyclingnews that won't be happening for another two years. "We've got a great medical and training staff, and, together with the directors, we've created a good calendar for him," Stephens told Cyclingnews at the finish of stage 3 in Morgan Hill, California. "He's not doing too many races. We decided to race him less, even though he might be able to do more. The few races that he does do, he'll race hard, and he's doing well, and that's probably the best way for him. We're already starting to think about ...

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The weekly spin: George Bennett talks California, Kittel, and Game of Thrones

The last time George Bennett started the Amgen Tour of California, he won the race. He didn’t win any stages at the 2017 edition, but on the strength of several high placings in the mountains and a strong time trial, the 29-year-old Kiwi took the first (and only) pro victory of his career, ahead of … The post The weekly spin: George Bennett talks California, Kittel, and Game of Thrones appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Pogacar leads young UAE Team Emirates roster in California

Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) wins Volta ao Algarve

Tadej Pogačar will lead a young UAE Team Emirates roster at the upcoming Amgen Tour of California , which starts Sunday in Sacramento and concludes in Pasadena on May 18 after seven days of racing. Pogačar will be joined in the US WorldTour race by Kristijan Durasek, Roberto Ferrari, Vegard Stake Laengen, Cristian Muñoz, Rui Oliveira and up-and-coming sprinter Jasper Philipsen. Muñoz, Oliveira, Philipsen and Pogačar are all under-23, but the youngsters can lean on the experience of Ferrari, 36, Durasek, 31, and Laengen, 30. The 20-year-old Pogačar will look to continue the stellar start to his first season on the WorldTour after riding for Slovenian Continental teams for two years. The Slovenian started his season with 13th overall at the Tour Down Under in January before winning a stage and the overall at the Volta ao Algarve in Portugal. He was second in the Arrigorriaga stage at Pais Vasco ...

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Lambrecht close to breakthrough podium finish at Fleche Wallonne

Bjorg Lambrecht (Lotto Soudal) during stage 8 at Tour de Suisse

So near and so far. Second-year pro Bjorg Lambrecht ( Lotto Soudal ) made another big step up the unofficial pro cycling hierarchy on Wednesday as he clinched a fourth place at Fleche Wallonne , hot on the heels of sixth place in Amstel Gold and fifth place in Brabantse Pijl. And it could have been better if Lambrecht, still only 22, had not run out of legs on the final third of the Mur de Huy. But his fourth place, two seconds behind third-placed Diego Ullissi (UAE) after he began closing the gap - and this despite his ebbing strength - bodes more than well for the future. A silver medallist in the U23 road race at the UCI World Championships last year in Innsbruck, Lambrecht is not just about Classics either. A winner of a stage of the Tour des Fjords, he already took a second place in ...

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Aldag: Valgren's talent hasn't just gone

Michael Valgren (Dimension Data) shows off the new Assos jersey

It has been a punishing spring for the Dimension Data team with just two wins this season and sickness wrecking their chances in the spring Classics. Marquee signing Michael Valgren has been unable to showcase his talent but Dimension Data's head of performance Rolf Aldag believes that the Danish rider hasn't become a bad rider overnight and that the team's fortunes and results will improve. "We know why it's been difficult. They were sick and then when everyone else is super good it's just really difficult to catch up again. That's what you have to live with," Aldag told Cyclingnews during the weekend of Paris-Roubaix. Dimension Data signed the entire 2018 Amstel Gold Race podium over the winter with Valgren joined by Roman Kreuziger and the experienced Enrico Gasparotto. Their remaining Classics season will very much depend on those three riders performing at their very best. "The Ardennes are coming. ...

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Puncture derails Adam Yates' Basque Country plans

Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) finishes 1:12 down on stage 2 at Pais Vasco

Adam Yates ' hopes for an overall win at Tour of the Basque Country suffered a major blow Tuesday when the Mitchelton-Scott leader suffered a puncture on a gravel section near the end of stage 2 . Yates was with the main peloton making his way through the final gravel sector of the day when the puncture occurred. He got a quick wheel change from teammate Damian Howson, but with less than 16km remaining the pace on the front was high, and Yates wasn't able to regain contact with the bunch, coming in 1:12 down on stage winner Julian Alaphilippe on the uphill finish in Gorraiz. "I couldn’t have punctured at a worse moment," Yates said in a statement published on the team website. "We rode well as a team all day, stayed in good position and out of trouble on the gravel sections, but unfortunately all that can disappear ...

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CCC Team on hunt for stage wins at Volta a Catalunya

Patrick Bevin had a difficult day on stage 6 at the Tour Down Under

CCC Team head to the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya on Monday with no clear contender for the overall classification. Instead, they'll rely on a number of riders to try to take stage wins at the seven-day Spanish race. With no Greg Van Avermaet on the roster – who next races at the E3 BinckBank Classic on Friday – the team will be looking in the direction of their only other race winner this season, Patrick Bevin , who won the New Zealand national time trial title at the start of the year, ahead of taking a stage at the Tour Down Under . A crash on the penultimate stage of the UAE Tour at the start of March has kept him out of competition for the past three weeks, but Bevin has been training hard, and said on the team's website that he's ready to race this week. "I feel ...

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The Pro-Conti and SSR Corner

Don’t be calling my win at Trofeo Laigueglia merda piccola.

Where we discuss all things shit small Welcome to what I hope will be a bi-weekly column on the pro-conti ranks and upcoming shit small races. I had a lot of fun last season previewing the SSRs that don’t get a lot of coverage in the SSSRSSP (Shawn’s Shit Small Race Shit Small Preview) series and want to continue highlighting these races and what’s happening in the pro-conti (and continental) ranks without necessarily doing a big preview for each race. WITHER SSR RACING? I’ve now spent approximately 2,326 hours writing about vds, 47,248 hours conducting vds drafts, 2.2 x 10 22nd power years researching my vds team, and today, while watching Le Samyn, and then wondering why Florian Senechal only scored 100 points for his first professional victory, was the first time that I realized that Ursula lowered the categories downward for many of the SSR races. All of these ...

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Calmejane considering cobbled classics campaign

Third place for Lilian Calmejane of Direct Energie

Direct Énergie may have a surprise in store for the cobbled classics, with Lilian Calmejane considering participation in the races for the first time this season. In an interview published on the team’s Youtube account, the 26-year-old cited Roubaix and Flanders winner Niki Terpstra joining the team as his inspiration. “I think it’s the right moment,” Calmejane said. “We have a team that’s well-suited to those races, and we have a guy in Niki Terpstra who can be a super teacher. That’s one option. “The other option is that I rest up and, if we’re lucky enough to get an invite, do Pais Vasco in favour of preparing optimally for the Ardennes Classics – above all Liège-Bastogne-Liège. That’s the question mark at the moment.” Calmejane has never raced the cobbled classics before, so any potential foray would likely be more of a learning experience and supporting Terpstra. The Frenchman raced ...

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Kwiatkowski sets sights on Liege, worlds

Kwiatkowski sets sights on Liege, worlds

The Sky rider says he wants to win Liège-Bastogne-Liège this season. Read the full article at Kwiatkowski sets sights on Liege, worlds on .

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Julian Alaphilippe: Everyone expected me to win the Worlds

Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors)

France's Julian Alaphilippe had nothing short of a fantastic season in 2018: a stage win at the Oro y Paz in Colombia, two stage wins at the Vuelta al Pais Vasco, followed two weeks later by victory at Flèche Wallonne , and then a stage at the Critérium du Dauphiné, and two more stage wins at the Tour de France , where he also won the polka-dot jersey. Just a week after the Tour, the 26-year-old won the Clasica San Sebastian , and then took a stage win and the overall title at both the Tour of Britain and the Tour of Slovakia in September. It was natural, therefore, that Alaphilippe's name should crop up among the top favourites for the UCI Road World Championships road race in Innsbruck, Austria, later that month: a punchy parcours, with a sting in the tail in the shape of the Höttinger Höll climb ...

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Cummings: Sometimes a bad experience can be a good one

Steve Cummings before the start of stage 3 at Volta a Catalunya

It has been a season to forget for Steve Cummings . Or maybe not. The British rider has had a frustrating and winless campaign, but is determined now to use it as a force for change. “It’s good you know, sometimes you need a season like that,” he told Cyclingnews at the Vuelta a España , where he had his Grand Tour fill after missing out on selection for the Tour de France. “You rip everything you’ve been doing apart and it’s an opportunity to change some things and go forward. I think it’s just given me a chance to explore everything really, lots of new ideas. That’s how I see it, anyway.” Cummings had enjoyed a highly successful spell since joining Dimension Data in 2015, and seemed liberated and rejuvenated, even in his late 30’s. He won a stage of the Tour de France in his first year and ...

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Sergio Henao set to leave Team Sky for UAE Emirates

Sergio Henao (Team Sky) at the Vuelta a España team presentation

Sergio Henao is set to leave Team Sky at the end of the season and ride for UAE Team Emirates from 2019. The 30-year-old appeared to confirm the move when interviewed by Colombian television station Caracol at the Vuelta a España. UAE Team Emirates confirmed to Cyclingnews that the deal was "advanced" but, having not prepared their own announcement, denied it had been finalised. "It's my last year at Sky. I've already signed with UAE Emirates," Henao said. Henao turned pro with Team Sky in 2012, having chosen to ignore contract offers a couple of years previously to continue his development in Colombia before making the move to Europe. He finished ninth overall at the 2012 Giro d'Italia in what was his debut Grand Tour and supported Chris Froome to Tour de France victory in 2016 and 2017. His personal highlight in Sky colours came with victory at last year's ...

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Viviani leads Quick-Step Floors at Vuelta a Espana

Elia Viviani celebrates his victory

Quick-Step Floors have announced their eight-man squad for the 2018 Vuelta a España , which starts in Malaga on August 25. The Belgian team's star turn will be Italian sprinter Elia Viviani , who heads to Spain having missed the Tour de France, and should be firing on all cylinders if his Giro d'Italia performance in May is anything to go by. The 29-year-old won four stages and came away with the purple sprinter's jersey at the Giro, and went on to win three stages at the Adriatica Ionica and then the Italian national championships road race. Denmark's Michael Mørkøv and Italian Fabio Sabatini have been tasked as being Viviani's principal lead-out men, but the entire team will be expected to lend a hand to ensure that the team continues its run of having won stages in the last eight Grand Tours. "Elia has had a tremendous season, and will ...

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Today at the Tour: Alaphilippe’s emotional day in the Alps

He plays the drums. He was a junior cyclocross star. He can pop a mean wheelie. And now, Julian Alaphilippe is a Tour de France stage winner. On Stage 10 from Annecy to Le Grand-Bornand, the 26-year-old Frenchman took his first Tour stage win by riding into the daylong breakaway and then catching lone leader … The post Today at the Tour: Alaphilippe’s emotional day in the Alps appeared first on CyclingTips .

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Uran to lead EF Education First-Drapac with a dream of winning the Tour de France

Rigoberto Uran (EF-Drapac)

Rigoberto Uran will lead the EF Education First-Drapac team at the upcoming Tour de France set to begin in the Vendée region on July 7. The Colombian finished a remarkable second place behind Chris Froome (Team Sky) last year, and the team will return with a dream of winning the overall title. "The objective is quite simple," said team CEO Jonathan Vaughters in a team press release. "We start the race trying to win the Tour de France. "Is that optimistic and is that pushing the limits of our team? Absolutely. But we were second place last year. We have a little bit stronger team this year, and we have a parcours more suited to Rigo than last year. We have Rigo, who is stronger than he was last year. So we're going in with the idea of trying to win the race." In last year's Tour, Uran won the ...

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Movistar sending veterans to support three Tour de France leaders

Alejandro Valverde, Nairo Quintana and Mikel Landa - Movistar training on the Paris-Roubaix cobbles

The Movistar team has chosen its most dedicated and experienced veteran domestiques to support its trio of general classification contenders Nairo Quintana , Mikel Landa and Alejandro Valverde at the Tour de France. 24-year-old Marc Soler, the winner of Paris-Nice, is the least experienced, with only one Grand Tour under his belt - last year's Vuelta a Espana. The other four riders selected - Andrey Amador, Daniele Bennati, Jose Joaquin Rojas and Imanol Erviti have a combined total of 66 Grand Tours between them. The 2018 Tour de France begins in the Vendee region of western France on Saturday July 7 and ends in Paris on Sunday July 29. The three-week Grand Tour includes a 35.5km team time trial and a stage on the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix. The Alps come before Pyrenees with the 31km stage 20 time trial expected to decide the final overall winner. Landa told Marca last ...

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Landa: Movistar might have the strongest team at the Tour de France

Mikel Landa Meana (Movistar) and Hugh Carthy (EF Education First - Drapac) on the move suring stage

Mikel Landa believes the Movistar could have a team that is as good as, if not stronger, than Team Sky at next month's Tour de France . Landa was Chris Froome's most important rider at last year's race but moved to Movistar over the winter and forms part of a three-pronged GC attack with Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde. "It could be that Movistar will be the strongest at the Tour this year. I am happy with the team, it is really strong and we will resolve things out on the road. At least we will be at the level of Sky in the past years," Landa told Marca . Landa and his two co-leaders were paraded in front of the press at Movistar event in Madrid earlier this week. Team manager Eusebio Unzue was quizzed as to how he would balance three riders of equal billing, a question that ...

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LottoNL-Jumbo announce Tour de France squad

Race leader Primoz Roglic (LottoNl-Jumbo)

Dutch WorldTour team LottoNL-Jumbo have revealed the eight riders who will represent them at the 2018 Tour de France , starting in Noirmoutier-en-l'Ile on July 7. The team will be led by 31-year-old Dutchman Steven Kruijswijk and the recent winner of the Tour of Slovenia, Primoz Roglic . For the sprints, Dylan Groenewegen – winner of the final stage of last year's Tour on the Champs-Elysées in Paris – will give the likes of Marcel Kittel, Fernando Gaviria and Mark Cavendish a run for their money for stage wins, and has to be considered one of the favourites to take the green jersey. Kruijswijk's best Grand Tour finish came at the 2016 Giro d'Italia, when he infamously crashed on the descent of the Colle dell'Agnello on stage 19 while in the pink jersey as leader of the race. Going into the stage, Kruijswijk had an overall lead of three minutes ...

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Gaviria brings winning sprint to Tour de Suisse

Quick-Step Floors' Fernando Gaviria wins stage 5 of the 2018 Tour of California in Elk Grove

Quick-Step Floors announced their seven-man roster that will line up at the Tour de Suisse held from June 9-17. The Belgian team has won 10 stages, and aim to increase that tally with Philippe Gilbert targeting the punchy stages and Fernando Gaviria eyeing the sprints. The team also includes sprinter Maximiliano Richeze, Tim Declercq and Iljo Keisse, along with Dwars door Vlaanderen winner Yves Lampaert and Enric Mas, who won a stage of Pais Vasco. The team returns to racing after spending time training at altitude ahead of the Swiss event. "Most of our riders are just back from an altitude camp, so we have to see how they are easing back into racing," said team director Tom Steels in a team press release. This year's nine-day race starts with an 18.3km team time trial in Frauenfeld and finishes with a 34km time trial in Bellinzona. There are two summit ...

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