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  1. Lappartient keen to end Giro d'Italia and Tour of California clash

    UCI president David Lappartient has suggested that the Giro d’Italia and Tour of California could change dates in 2020 to avoid the current May calendar clash of the two WorldTour races.

    The Frenchman revealed that the 2020 Tour of California has been pencilled in for an earlier date of May 3 - 9, while the 2020 Giro d’Italia would start a week later and be held between May 16 - June 7. It is unclear if the Tour de France would move back a week, or start four weeks after the Giro d’Italia on July 4, or if other races would change dates.

    The 2020 season marks the start of the next chapter of the men’s WorldTour series, with teams applying for the three-year WorldTour licences and the creation of the 20-25 race UCI Classics Series, where organisers, teams and riders will pool revenue and investment in an attempt to develop the sport globally. The UCI Classics Series is expected to dominate the race calendar between January to April and August and October, with the Grand Tours and other stage races dominating the summer months.

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    Lappartient revealed the potential date changes during an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport, while attending the UCI Bike City Forum in Milan last week. He also said that the UCI test for the painkiller tramadol will now begin in March rather than at the Tour Down Under in January, with a simple pinprick blood test before and after races leading to a disqualification from the race.

    The Giro d’Italia has struggled to attract some of the biggest names in the sport since the Tour of California moved to May. Peter Sagan has never ridden the Giro d’Italia and his personal sponsorship with bike brand Specialized means he is unlikely to opt for the Italian race while the calendar clash remains.

    "We’re working so it doesn’t happen any more,” Lappartient said of the date clash. "I’ve already met RCS Sport and I’ll meet the American organisers in December: For the 2020 the plan is to push back the Giro d’Italia a week (to May 16 - June 7) and bring the Tour of California a week forward (to May 3 – 9), so its possible to ride both."

    Tests for tramadol

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  2. This carbon spoked wheelset presents a totally new revolution in wheel tech

    This article first appeared on BikeRadar.

    This prototype 1,290g carbon-spoked wheelset from Hunt features a totally new patented process for attaching spokes and a filament-wound carbon rim is one of the most interesting we’ve seen in recent years.

    Carbon challenges

    The use of a truly unique carbon spoke system is the headline news for this prototype wheelset — no other wheelset currently available uses the same technology.

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    In fact, not many wheelsets use carbon spokes at all, and if they do, they often come with significant restrictions.

    Carbon spokes cannot be made in the same way as a regular steel one — it’s not possible to add threads to carbon fibre, so different ways of attaching them to both the hub and rim has to be designed.

    Most of the carbon-spoked wheels that we know of actually bond the spokes to hub and rim, making the wheel a one-piece unit that isn’t serviceable. Two notable examples are Lightweight and Mavic Cosmic Ultimate wheels.

    A new carbon spoke system

    Filament Wound Rim

    A completely new carbon wheel

    Availability

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  3. Katusha-Alpecin announce reduced 24-rider roster for 2019

    Katusha-Alpecin have confirmed their 24-man roster for the forthcoming season and will unveil it officially in Germany at the start of December. The roster has been reduced by two riders from 2018, continuing a trend of teams carrying smaller rosters for the new season.

    There have been quite a few changes at Katusha, with six riders coming in and eight leaving this winter as they to revive their fortunes after a disappointing season. While Marcel Kittel’s difficulties were the most high-profile issues for the squad, the team as a whole failed to live up to expectations. Ilnur Zakarin also struggled in his ambitions, managing ninth at the Tour de France and 20th at the Vuelta a Espana.

    Katusha-Alpecin scored just five victories in 2018 – compared to their 17 the season before – and finished 17th out of 18 in the WorldTour rankings. Kittel provided two of the wins at Tirreno-Adriatico, Nathan Haas took one at the Tour of Oman, Nils Politt took a stage of the Deutschland Tour and Tony Martin won the German time trial title.

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    Kittel, Haas and Politt will remain with the team next year but there has been a raft of departures. Chief among them is Tony Martin, who leaves the team for LottoNL-Jumbo after just two years with the team. Maurits Lammertink is heading to Roompot-Charles, Tiago Machado to Sporting Tavira, Marco Mathis to Cofidis, Baptiste Planckaert to WB-Veranclassic Aqua Protect and Jhonathan Restrepo to Manzana Postobon. Robert Kiserlovski is retiring while Maxime Belkov, who is not on the list of confirmed names, has not confirmed his plans for 2019.

    With their list of incoming riders, the team has looked to shore up their roster in key areas. Daniel Navarro moves over from Cofidis after six seasons with the French squad. He is getting towards the end of his career but will provide some important support in the mountains for Zakarin, having been a domestique for Alberto Contador in the past. They have also signed promising young climber Ruben Guerreiro from Trek-Segafredo.

    In the sprints, they have brought in Jens Debusschere, who will also provide options in the cobbled Classics. Debusschere finished fifth at Gent-Wevelgem and 10th at Paris-Roubaix this season. Enrico Battaglin also arrives for 2019. The Italian has spent the last three seasons at LottoNL-Jumbo and returned to form with an uphill sprint victory in the opening week of the Giro d’Italia at Santa Ninfa.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  4. Viviani: Milan-San Remo is the only Monument I can win

    Elia Viviani has enjoyed a prolific first season with Quick-Step Floors, and is now readying himself for an attempt at winning Milan-San Remo in March.

    Viviani told Belgian website sporza.be on Monday that he thought the Italian one-day race was the only Monument that he was capable of winning, and that it was his main goal for 2019.

    He also told the website that he would have to "wait and see" whether he rides the Giro d'Italia – which he rode in 2018, taking four stage victories there – or the Tour de France, which he missed this year in favour of teammate Fernando Gaviria leading the team there, with the Colombian taking two stage wins.

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    But with Gaviria having moved on to UAE Team Emirates for 2019, Viviani is once again the undisputed top-dog sprinter at the team that will be called Deceuninck-QuickStep next year.

    "On one hand, I'd like to be at the start of the Giro as the Italian champion, as the finish is in my native region [Veneto]," the 29-year-old told Sporza.
     
    "On the other hand, the time is right for the Tour de France, with Fernando no longer racing for us, and with the Tour starting in Brussels, and me riding for a Belgian team. But let's wait and see how I start the season," he said.

    Having taken those four stage wins at the Giro, and then another three Grand Tour stage victories at this year's Vuelta a España, Viviani wants to complete the set.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  5. Lotto Soudal Ladies sign Gran Fondo world champion

    The Lotto Soudal Ladies team has added 37-year-old Gran Fondo world champion Marie Dessart to its roster for 2019, the team has reported.

    The Belgian won the 35-39 age category at the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Varese, Italy, in September.

    "This is a wonderful opportunity to still get at my age," Dessart said on the team's website, "and a dream come true. The past two to three years, I've got some good results in amateur races, but I thought it was too late to ever ride for an elite team. But suddenly it has become a reality."

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    The former triathlete has only concentrated on cycling in the past five years, and knows that joining one of the world's best women's teams will be a challenge.

    "I've participated in several Ironman triathlons, and was very good at cycling, but during the run my opponents used to overtake me, which was why I decided to focus on cycling," said Dessart.

    “I love the mountains and that’s why I love riding Gran Fondos," she continued. "I love the physical effort on a long climb, and I also have the body of a climber. And you get to ride through beautiful landscapes. The mountains are my favourite surroundings to race and train in.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  6. Mitchelton-Scott women announce 10-rider roster for 2019

    After announcing their men's team last Thursday, Mitchelton-Scott women have confirmed their 10-rider roster for 2019. The team will be made up of seven Australians and three international riders, as it was this year.

    There is little change within the line-up for next season, with just two riders coming in to replace two outgoing riders.

    Jolien D'hoore departs after just one season as she heads to Boels Dolmans for 2019, while Janelle Crooks will not return after two and a half seasons with the team.

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    Coming in are Grace Brown, who moves to the team after half a season with Wiggle-High5, and Moniek Tenniglo, who joins from FDJ Nouvelle Aquitaine Futuroscope. The team have not been able to find a direct replacement for D'hoore in the sprints but directeur sportif Martin Vestby believes that the team can still succeed in the bunch gallops.

    "I feel we have a good balance of different types of riders for next season and the girls really know each other's strengths," said Vestby. "Our two new riders fit well in the team and will provide vital support, adding strength and depth to the support structure and I think it will be a good balance and mix with the 2018 girls.

    "The biggest challenge will be in the pure sprinter's races, but we have proved that we can do good lead-outs and win with different riders when it comes down to group sprints."

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  7. Israel Cycling Academy elevates Clement Carisey from stagiaire role

    Israel Cycling Academy has elevated Clément Carisey from his stagiaire role to a spot on the Pro Continental team next year. The 26-year-old joined the team in August and raced 27 days, including a healthy dose of Belgian one-day races, the Czech Cycling Tour and the Tour of Hainan.

    Jumping from an amateur team to the Pro Continental level is a big move for the rider in a year when many veterans are still without teams, but the confident Frenchman says he's not surprised he made the team's 2019 roster.

    "I thought that I left a good impression on most days," he said in a statement released by the team. "But it's not easy these days in pro cycling, and it's not usual to see an amateur rider get the opportunity to break in at my age. So I would admit that when I got that call I was extremely happy with it. I guess its worth believing in your dreams."

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    Carisey started racing with the team at the Czech Cycling Tour in August, then went straight to Belgium for nearly a dozen one-day races that included the Great War Remembrance Race, where teammate Mihkel Räim won. He also competed in 1.HC races at the Brussels Cycling Classic and the Primus Classic. He went home to France next for Paris-Bourges and Paris-Tours. Carisey finished out the season with an Asian trip to Hammer Hong Kong and the nine-day 2.HC Tour of Hainan, where he nabbed a top-10 finish on stage 8.

    "Clement proved his value to the team in more than one way," said team General Manager Ran Margaliot. "He had shown his ability to make a difference as a support rider, with full dedication to his leader as well as race intelligence and experience of when and where to place himself at crucial moments.

    "But what actually impressed me the most was his human qualities off the bike," Margaliot said. "A rider at his age, who spent all his life in French teams, to come into a unique structure as ICA, learn English in record time and adapt so rapidly, it is an impressive achievement. In a way you get the feeling that you can throw Clement into any situation and he will be just fine. He is the perfect teammate and will be a great addition to our growing team."

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  8. Canyon's most expensive bike ever — £11,799 of carbon exotica

    This article first appeared on BikeRadar.

    Here at BikeRadar we love fancy, expensive and lightweight bicycles and this Canyon Ultimate CF EVO 10.0 LTD — the German consumer-direct brand's most expensive bike ever — is all three of these things. So what does £11,799 buy you?

    To start, we have an ultralight CF EVO-level frameset, which comes in at a claimed 700g for the frame and 270g for the fork.

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    For the groupset, SRAM supplies a Red eTap drivetrain, which has been upgraded with CeramicSpeed titanium jockey wheels and a THM Clavicula M3 crankset that is fitted with an SRM power meter.

    The wheels are Lightweight by name and nature — the German carbon specialist's supply the clincher version of its Meilenstein wheels, which are fitted with Continental Grand Prix TT tyres.

    Lastly, the saddle comes courtesy of Fizik with Canyon's own H36 integrated cockpit and VCLS seatpost rounding out this oh-so-fancy build.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  9. Cant criticises organisers for hosting 'too short' women's cyclo-cross races

    World champion Sanne Cant (Enetherm- BKCP) has criticised cyclo-cross event organisers for hosting races for women that are too short. She argued that some races, particularly this past weekend, barely reached the minimum time standard of 40 minutes set by the UCI, and in some cases, organisers have stopped clock shy of that minimum.

    "I think it's a pity that we only have 40 minutes in the last races," Cant told Sporza following her race at Flandriencross in Hamme on Sunday. "I think we should approach 50 minutes instead of continuing to race around 40 minutes."

    The UCI sets the duration of elite women's cyclo-cross events between 40 and 50 minutes, according to the current cyclo-cross regulations, and whereby the number of laps they complete are calculated and announced at the end of the second lap. In comparison, the elite men’s category races must be set at 60 minutes, and between 60 to 70 minutes at World Cup and World Championships.

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    In Hamme, Annemarie Worst (Steylaerts - 777) won the women’s race in 39:06, nearly a minute short of the UCI's minimum time standard. Cant finished in second place at one-second behind after a lead group of eight riders fought for the victory for much of the race.

    Cant said the eight-rider front group was racing between seven and eight minutes per lap, and so if they had raced for one more lap the total time would have been between roughly 46 and 47 minutes, and would not have surpassed the maximum time standard of 50 minutes.

    "Today, they could have raced us for a lap longer. The rules are between 40 and 50 minutes. Today we raced for 39 minutes, and we do not even get the rules. With an extra lap, that would have been successful," Cant said. "Today, it was seven to eight minutes. I think it's easy to get a lap in. If we had raced a lap in 10 minutes, I understand that it would have been harder to count, but this cannot be that difficult, I think."

    Cant also competed in Saturday's UCI World Cup in Tabor, where Lucinda Brand (Team Sunweb) won the women’s race in 40:19, and Cant placed sixth at 13 seconds back.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  10. Broeckx rides bike for first time since coma

    Stig Broeckx has ridden a bike for the first time since his life-threatening crash at the 2016 Belgium Tour. The Belgian, who suffered severe brain damage and was in a coma for more than six months, posted a photo on his social media accounts after a 40-kilometre ride on his mountain bike.

    The ride is the latest step in what has been a remarkable recovery, having once being declared in a vegetative state, and he vowed that his next goal was to get out on his race bike.

    Broeckx, now 28, suffered the devastating injury when he was hit by a motorbike at the Belgium Tour in May 2016. With a fractured skull and bleeding on the brain, he was in a coma for more than six month, and doctors feared he might never emerge from it.

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    He did just that, however, in December 2016, and since then his recovery has been described as 'miraculous'. Having had to start from scratch, learning how to swallow independently, move his muscles, and then walk and talk, he rode on an indoor trainer for the first time last year. 

    This weekend, however, he reached a new milestone, heading outside to ride a real bike for the first time since the crash two and a half years ago. Riding a mountain bike, he covered 40 kilometres in north east Belgium.

    "The ride did a lot of good," Broeckx said on the Studio Brussels programme, which went to visit him at the rehabilitation centre on Overpelt. "I had been looking forward to it very much.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

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