de California, Savoldelli Okay, Quick-Step's Weylandts, Symmetrics Cycling Camp
40th Vuelta al Tachira en Bicicleta (Venezuela):
Tour of Siam (2.2):
Tour de California Coming in 2006
Next month should see the first details of the Tour de California, a
potential 9-stage, two week race being planned for spring 2006, with stages to
bust the legs and pop the eyeballs. California is a very, very scenic state,
with stunning coastlines and rich agricultural regions, but with more than its
share of brutal mountains.
Two members of the race organization are former Los Angeles Richard Riordan
and Los Angeles Business Journal's Matt Toledo, who stated recently that riders
and fans could expect a stage from Sacramento to Lake Tahoe, a stage from the
Napa wine country into San Francisco, as well as stages in the eastern mountains
(Yosemite), the central coast (Monterery) and the south western coast (around
Santa Barbara, near where the Discovery Channel team is currently training and
the Santa Monica mountains which are a favorite local training ground). The
distances between these various venues are hundreds of miles - can you say
Last year, there were a few reports that Threshold Sports, the organizer for
the T-Mobile International and the Wachovia Cycling Series (USPRO), would head
up the marketing. The organizers say that the title sponsor will be announced in
the next few weeks, that the race will be televised, and that the plan is to
make it an international event - as big as the Tour de France. California is a
state that could definitely pull that off... (Thanks to Sacramento Business
Il Falco Savoldelli Okay after Surgery
Dan Osipow reports on The Paceline
today that The Falcon Paolo Savoldelli of the Discovery Channel Team had
successful surgery today after breaking his collarbone in a riding accident in California on Saturday morning.
Savoldelli will miss the final week Discovery sponsor activities and will be
returning to Europe on the weekend. Team Manager Johan Bruyneel says that Il
Falco should be in fine shape for the Giro d'Italia come May. We look forward to that, and wish Il Falco the very best.
Quick-Step's Weylandts Down and Out
Wouter Weylandt isn't participating in the Tour Down Under, which will take
place from January 18th till 23rd. The Quick-Step rider has contracted
mononucleosis. This has been concluded after some medical examinations on the
spot. Weylandt, 20 years old and a new pro, leaves Australia tomorrow. We wish
him a quick recovery.
Symmetrics Cycling Camp Report
Canada's Symmetrics Cycling team, which includes Eric Wohlberg and Svein
Tuft, and Mandy Poitras on the women's team, has this review of their training
camp held over the weekend. Team Manager Jeremy Storie files this report.
Date: January 13 -16, 2005
Location: Langley, BC, Canada
The 2005 edition of the Symmetrics Cycling Team all congregated in Langley,
BC, for the first full team training camp of the year from January 13-16. Our
mechanic, Bill McPherson, flew in from the O.C. Eric Wohlberg and Jake Erker
flew in from Sunnyvale, California, and La Jolla, California, respectively. Our
Vancouver Island contingent of Christina Briante and Andrew “Pinner” Pinfold
took their ferry across the pond. All the locals were present. New recruits Jeff
Sherstobitoff and Christian Meier had settled into their new lower mainland
homes for the race season.
Bill was tasked with finalizing the builds on our beautiful new Norco CRR
Team Carbon bicycles. There were 18 of them to assemble. This is one sweet
ride, but with this crazy cold weather we have been having, we were not sure we
would even get to ride them.
The opening day of the camp (Jan 13) started with brief introductions and a
trip to the weight room, followed by a few hours in the Burnaby Velodrome during
the afternoon. It was sight to see the entire team up on the steep boards on the
track. Most of our riders had ridden the track with the exception of Maria Lee
and Christina Briante, but by the end of the session both were ripping around up
high on the bankings. Our first day was finished off with a pot-luck dinner our
owner, Kevin Cunningham and his gracious wife’s house.
Friday started off a little on the chilly side at negative 10 degrees, but it
was very sunny and the entire team hopped into vehicles and drove out to the
Chilliwack Lake road area and up Foley logging road to start an epic 4 hour snow
shoe adventure. Svein Tuft was the guide of course and I think for most this was
the highlight of the trip as the peak the team went up tops out at over 5000
feet with spectacular views. Everybody made it back to base on time for a
presentation by Norco’s head of marketing Pete Stace-Smith and Norco’s bike
production manager Dave Overgaard. Then it was off to a team dinner at a local
restaurant. After dinner riders headed back to their various homes to get a good
nights sleep on their new beds provided by team sponsor, Northern Feather.
Well, Saturday dawned even colder at negative 14 and all the riders showed up
at the Walnut Grove Community Centre for the ride with the public. We had
invited media and sponsors as well. Adidas showed up with their 46 foot promo
motor home, Norco was present with their full race rig set-up, and Powerbar was
sampling a full line up of their products. Jim Harman, Norco president was also
on hand to make the draw for the Sigma Sport heart rate monitor. Mark
Cunningham, CEO of Symmetrics was on hand to ride and Kevin Cunningham, COO of
Westlam was driving the media lead vehicle.
Brrr....Riders of all ages and levels joined the ride.
Click for larger image. Photo by Greg Descantes.
The media was in attendance as well with Shaw TV covering the event, along
with the two local newspapers, the Langley Times and Langley Advance. Velonews
sent freelance correspondent Jonathan Fowlie, and Greg Descantes actually rode
out from Vancouver to photograph the event for Canadian Cyclist.
Cam Evans (National Champ 2004), Eric Wohlberg (3 time Olympian,
8-time National Champ), Svein Tuft (National Champ 2004). Click for larger
image. Photo by Greg Descantes.
Despite the temperature a hardy crew of riders showed up and the entire group
numbered a little over forty riders. Bloody good for the conditions. After a
solid, and I mean frozen solid, 90 minutes of riding we returned to the
community centre for coffee, hot chocolate, and muffins. Powerbar’s western
representative Frank Lucarelli was on hand sampling product, and there was a
great schwag give away by Norco. Riders answered questions, signed the odd
autograph, and gave interviews. A good time was had by all, even if it was a
little chilly. Saturday was finished off with more team meetings to discuss
budget, race schedule, and meet one of our support staff. After a dinner out
the riders all retired to Jeremy Storie’s house for a couple of video’s and
popcorn organized by Symmetrics Cycling’s new social director and rider
Christina Briante. As everyone made their way home more snow and ice began to
Symmetrics Women’s Squad – Christina Briante, Mandy Poitras,
Maria Lee, Marni Hambleton.
Click for larger image. Photo by Greg Descantes.
The final day of the camp had an optional training session in the morning due
to the weather and finished up with media training and team meetings in the
afternoon. As riders packed up and said their good byes for a while, there was
a common sentiment echoed by all the riders in the wrap up of the camp. Everyone
at the camp felt like the team had become family over the course of the four
days. This camp was not really about training so much as team building. Jake
Erker summed it up best when he said, “I have never been on a team that would
just all go en masse to someone’s house and sit and hang out and watch videos.”
Names and faces. Click for larger image. Photo by Greg Descantes.
The bundled up team. Click for larger image. Photo by Greg