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Cycling News Roundup - 19 June 2008
 
By Staff
Date: 6/19/2008
Cycling News Roundup - 19 June 2008
 

Cycling News Roundup 19 June 2008
Tour de Suisse Reactions,
46th Manhattan Beach Grand Prix Live Online! Volksbank Wildcard Deutschland Tour , Mt. Holly-Smithville Invitational GP, Think Dirty - BH Carbon Cross,

Tour de Switzerland Reactions
Team High Road Report
Kirchen Storms to Stage Win and Lead in Tour of Switzerland

Switzerland, 19 june 2008 - A powerful last minute dash for the finish line earned Kim Kirchen both the stage win and the overall lead in the Tour of Switzerland on Thursday.

With 125 metres to go on the summit finish at Verbier on stage six, the Luxembourg-born rider tore away from the main pack for his fourth win of the season. Second overall last year in the same race - in a season in which he often placed well but victories proved more elusive - Kirchen recognized that his win in the Fleche Wallone one-day Classic this April “has acted as a huge confidence booster.”

“Fleche has given me the motivation I need to shift up a level and start winning stages like here in Switzerland. But it was very close today. [Belgian Stijn] Devolder put in a big attack and we could only catch him with 500 metres to go.” Kirchen continued, “My team were instrumental in helping me get this win, because they controlled the distance between the pack and a day-long break perfectly. Then in the final climb, it was up to me to pay them back for all that work.”

Looking further ahead, Kirchen says that the race “is far from over. My closest rival is barely 30 seconds back, and there’s Saturday’s mountain time trial to contend with. Tomorrow [Friday] we’ll defend the jersey on the flatter stage, and then we’ll have to take it as it comes.”

“Kim rode brilliantly and using his own initiative 100 percent.” adds team sports director Brian Holm. “He didn’t have any radio contact on the final climb, and so when he attacked that was his decision. He calculated it perfectly, but we were a bit nervous in the directors car on the final climb. Kim always waits and waits, and sometimes he waits a bit too long.”

“But this time, he didn’t use up all his strength and he got it right. He won this one with his head as much as his legs. The whole team put in a lot of work on the flat approach roads with Euskaltel-Euskadi and Liquigas put a rider on the front too. Then it was up to Kim.”

Looking ahead towards the Tour, Holm added “it’s very promising. Last year he had a great ride in the Tour [finishing seventh], calculating his strength perfectly. We can be sure that he’s going to do the same this summer - after today’s win, even more so!”
Keep up with Team High Road.

Lots of Attacks from Team CSC Saxo Bank
 The 188-kilometer sixth stage of Tour de Suisse from Ambri to Verbier meant lots of attacks from Team CSC Saxo Bank, but unfortunately the last bit of luck was missing in order to win the stage.

Jens Voigt set the standard by making the longest break of the day. Four riders from the group escaped before the finish line and Voigt was not among them, so in stead Team CSC Saxo Bank moved to the front of the main peloton and made sure a sizeable chunk of the group's lead was cut.

Fabian Cancellara, Kurt-Asle Arvesen and Bobby Julich worked really hard to diminish the group's lead from four and a half to two and a half minutes in just a few kilometers. On the final climb towards the finish line Fränk Schleck dropped the favorite's group to pave the way for younger brother Andy Schleck.

"Fränk wasn't a 100 % and we knew that. He'd been having back pains as well as several other aches and pains and he had difficulty holding on to the handlebars properly, so it was very hard on him of course. It was meant as an opening for Andy so when he picked up the pace from behind we said to Fränk to wait a while, but unfortunately he cut his speed too much so he was unable to increase his pace again due to the pain. A shame because Andy was well on his way to create a good gap, but a nice try and a nice effort by the entire team today," said Team CSC Saxo Bank's sports director Kim Andersen after the stage.

Andy Schleck finished in sixth place only a few seconds behind stage winner Kim Kirchen (High Road) and he is now just outside of the top-5 overall.

Lampre Team Report
Climb of Nufenenpass and mountain arrival in Verbier in the 6th stage of Tour de Suisse.
Cunego showed that he was feeling better than yeaterday, obtaining the 9th place at 31" from the winner Kirchen.

A breakaway began after the first climb and Loosli was at the head of the race: Lampre's athlete could defend his leadership in mountains classification with only one point on Iglinsky. The attack was neutralized by the group after few kilometers of the climb towards Verbier, on which the main riders battled: Frank Schleck realized the first attempt, followed by Devolder, then it was Andy Schleck's turn with Cunego behind his wheels. After few hundreds meters Lampre's captain set his speed at a regular pace and lost some seconds to the Schleck brothers, Kreuziger, Igor Anton, Devolder and Kirchen: it was this last one that obtained the victory and the leadership of the overall classification (Cunego is now 11th at 1'44").
"Today Damiano was better than yesterday - Piovani, Lampre's sport director, said - He managed his energies in a better way when the battle was hard so he could lose only few seconds".

Team CSC Saxo Bank
Ster Electro Toer Comments

Matti Breschel and Michael Blaudzun continue to show great form in Ster Elektrotoer, where they were both part of the group, which ended up sprinting for the fourth place shortly behind the winner of the 192-kilometer second stage from Verviers to La Gileppa. Enrico Gasparotto (Barloworld) won the stage ahead of Vasil Kiryienka (Tinkoff) and Matthe Pronk (Collstrop) and only 22 seconds later came the group with the two Danes, which meant they are in eighth and ninth place overall. Breschel finished fourth in the stage.

Bradley McGee on the other hand had to wave goodbye to his overall sixth place. "It was a tough route – very tough. I really suffered out there today and I'm totally busted now," said McGee with a smile. "I had to let go before we reached the tough lap at the end, but I'm actually fairly satisfied with my condition in the first stages here. But of course I need a little bit of time still to find the top form after my injury," concluded McGee.

Team CSC Saxo Bank suffered yet another accident during today's stage, when Anders Lund crashed, but he got through the stage with some serious cuts and bruises and is expected to continue on Friday.

Wild Card for Team Volksbank
Team Volksbank has been granted a wildcard Deutschland Tour 2008 as the team has fulfilled the requirements of the biological passports. Volksbank joins Continental Pro team Skil/Shimano to the list of wild cards to compete in the ProTour Deutchland Tour which will takes place August 29 to September 6th.

RACE Announcements
46th Manhattan Beach Grand Prix - June 29th

Rock Racing joins Chevron as Grand Prix Presenting Sponsor
 The 47th Annual Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix will be held on Sunday, June 29, 2008, race officials have announced. Record crowds are anticipated to support over 1,000 racers battling for $26,500 in prize money and the coveted winners' jerseys. Racing action begins at 7 a.m. at Live Oak Park, just steps from the ocean in Manhattan Beach.


Dave Towles interviews J.J. Haedo after he won in 2006.
Photo © Vaughn Trevi

Joining Chevron for this year’s race as a presenting sponsor is Rock Racing. Known for its notable roster including two former world champions, two Olympic gold medalists, four Tour de France stage winners and eight current and former national champions, the 2008 Rock Racing team will bring a new flair to the Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix. The team is led by Tyler Hamilton, Oscar Sevilla, Fred Rodriguez, Víctor Hugo Peña, Santiago Botero, and last year’s Manhattan Beach Grand Prix winner Rahsaan Bahati.

“We are excited about the addition of Rock Racing as the presenting sponsor of the Grand Prix and are proud that this race has achieved global prominence on the professional racing circuit,” said Rod Spackman, of Chevron, the event’s title sponsor for the past 17 years.

Other elite cyclists in the field will include Ivan Dominguez, Dominique Rollin, Henk Vogels and Ivan Stevic with Toyota-United Cycling, and Rory Sutherland with Health-Net.

"Rahsaan Bahati’s victory last year was a great moment for Rock Racing and we are proud to come back this year as a presenting sponsor,” said Team Owner Michael Ball. “The Manhattan Beach Grand Prix has been a fixture on the U.S. domestic racing scene for almost a half-century and we want to ensure the tradition continues for many more years to come.”

Live ONLINE
Thousands of cycling fans will join the festivities and witness the two main events: the Women’s Pro Race beginning at 11:15 a.m. and the Men’s Pro Race at 1:10 p.m. (West Coast Time) The Community Races will begin at 3:00 p.m. and will offer children between the ages of two and 14 the opportunity to hop on their bicycles, or tricycles, and compete for various medals. Each participating child will receive an official race number, t-shirt and medal.

“We can expect an action-packed day of world-class racing,” said Spackman. “The Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix has helped cultivate a new generation of cycling enthusiast in Southern California. Professional bicycle racing is exploding in popularity, and we are honored that the South Bay and this event continue to serve as its base of support. We’re looking forward to one of the most competitive fields this race has ever seen.”


A break goes up the stiff climb to the first 180 turn as the peloton chases.
Photo © Vaughn Trevi

In its history, the Grand Prix has hosted some of the world’s top cyclists, including several U.S. Olympic and World Champions as well as Tour de France competitors. The race’s attraction is due to its reputation as a challenging and technical criterion. Shaped like a slightly bent “paperclip,” the course features two long straight-aways and two sweeping 180-degree turns. Riders face a headwind on the downward slope, which hinders breakaways. Team tactics are a must and setting up for the final turn is essential to win the event.

Chevron has invited several local dignitaries, including Assemblyman Ted Lieu (District 53), to help kick-off the day’s festivities.

IBN Sports is webcasting the women’s and men’s pro races for fans who cannot attend in person. Please visit www.IBNSports.com to access the online streaming video. For more information on the 47th Annual Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix, please visit www.mbgp.com

About the Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix
The 1.4-mile course circles clockwise around Live Oak Park, up Valley Drive and down Ardmore, from 15th Street to Pacific Avenue. Race fans will line the streets to cheer on the riders as their endurance is worn away with each uphill climb. The Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix is one of the premiere competitions on the USA Cycling (USAC) National Race Calendar.

Manhattan Beach cyclist Ted Ernst founded the event in 1962 and it has now become one of America’s oldest bike races. He was also a founding member of the South Bay Wheelmen which, along with the Lions Club of Manhattan Beach, organizes and provides dozens of volunteers for the race. Ernst, the Wheelmen and Lion’s Club members remain a driving force behind the event.

The 2008 Manhattan Beach Grand Prix will mark Chevron’s 17th year as title sponsor, continuing the company’s commitment to community service. Proceeds from the race will support Lion’s Club programs for children and the elderly, including scholarships for local Mira Costa High School Students.

“The Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix makes a significant impact on the Lion’s Club every year,” said Bob Jones, who represents the Lion’s Club and serves as the Grand Prix’s operations director. “We encourage people to come out and support this event, and experience the thrill of world-class cycling. It’s for a great cause and watching live racing is as exciting as it gets.”

10th Mt. Holly-Smithville Invitational GP
More than $13,000.00 in cold hard cash in play.

The 10th edition of the Mt. Holly-Smithville Invitational GP will be held on July 19th, 2008 in Mt. Holly, New Jersey. The 2008 edition will see some exciting new changes to the event, as it moves from a criterium back to a 112.5km circuit race on a exciting 3.75km course that will highlight Mt. Holly’s growing downtown residential and business areas. The first 8 edition were run as a road race through Burlington County, NJ.

This year’s marquee event is open to UCI professional trade teams and a selection of elite amateur teams, who will compete for $12,000.00 in cash. The following UCI pro and continental teams have already confirmed their plans to participate:

Kelly Benefits Strategies/Medifast
Team Type 1
Rite Aid presented by Shebell and Shebell
Colavita-Sutter Home
Time pro cycling team
DLP pro cycling team

Proceeds from this event benefit the Prison Museum Association, a non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to improvements, restoration and programs in Burlington County's historic prison museum. The Associations programs and projects focus on making the museum a family destination, where residents can indulge in the prisons rich history.

Team Invitations Now
Teams wishing to be considered for participation in the Pro-I/II event can submit an application via the web at: www.co.burlington.nj.us/announcements/bikerace/ 

The team application/selection process will end on July 5th and selected teams for the 2008 edition will be announced on July 7th. The 2008 edition will see 27 pro and elite amateur teams invited with 6 riders per team. For additional information please contact the race organization vie email: mtholly@ccevesham.net This year’s event will also include additional racing for Master men 35+, Master men 45+, Senior Men 2/3 and Senior Men 4/5 as a prelude to the main event. More information

Think Dirty Thoughts Cross Season is Coming
BH Bikes Introduces Carbon Cyclocross Bike

It’s time to get dirty and BH is here to help. The BH Carbon Cross is built for maximum speed with the refined ride you’ve come to expect from a lightweight, carbon BH.

The Carbon Cross boasts an impressively light 1100 gram frame weight and comes with a carbon fork with a full-carbon steerer tube. The high modulous monocoque frame features top mounted cable stops for easy portaging over race barriers.


BH Hero Carbon Cross

The Carbon Cross was designed with AG2R rider John Gadret in mind. Gadret is the team’s climbing phenom, but also has been on the podium of the French cyclocross championships 10 years in a row. He has won the French cyclocross title three times. This is the same frame the AG2RLaMondiale riders (yes, they race cross, too) will use in this fall’s UCI cyclocross campaign.

BH USA will begin shipping the Carbon Cross to retailers in July – plenty of time for the upcoming cross season. It will be available as a complete bike with Ultegra SL, FSA and Mavic components for $3,150 or as a frameset for $2,199. All BH bikes are backed by a lifetime warranty.

Discuss this race and the sport with other cycling fans from around the world on the Daily Peloton.com Forums and Chat Room.  Sponsor the daily peloton & advertise your product or service to cyclists and cycling fans on www.dailypeloton.com - contact us.
 

 
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