Horner back in red after winning stage 10 of the Vuelta
American veteran Christopher Horner has moved back into the leader’s red jersey after winning the 10th stage of the Tour of Spain overnight.
It was the RadioShack rider’s second stage win of this year’s Vuelta following his third stage success that saw the 41-year-old wear red for a day, before losing it to Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali.
The Astana rider finished second on the punishing mountainous 187km stage from Torredelcampo to Alto de Haza Llana, which included 18 percent ramps in the final stages, losing 48 seconds to the American with Spaniard Alejandro Valverde third at just over a minute back.
Horner broke clear on his own in the final five kilometres and quickly edged out a significant gap as the other overall contenders marked each other’s responses. Eventually Nibali kicked for home and got clear of the other chasers, but by now Horner was already well on his way to victory.
“It was hard to get back up to Horner given the heat hit us hard, but I’m very satisfied given how much racing there’s been already,” said the Italian, the 2010 Vuelta winner and this year’s Giro d’Italia champion.
“After the rest day there’s the 38km time-trial which will sort out the overall standings a bit better.”
Horner leads Nibali in the overall standings by 52 seconds with Valverde, the 2009 Vuelta champion, third at 1:08. Overnight leader Daniel Moreno lost more than two minutes to drop outside the top five.
Tuesday is the first of two rest days before Wednesday’s 39km hilly individual time trial around Tarazona.
Follow the link for full results from stage 10 of the 2013 Vuelta a Espana. Text via AFP.
Villumsen wins Tour de l’Ardeche prologue
Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling’s Linda Villumsen won the opening prologue of the Tour de l’Ardèche in the town of Vallon Pont d’Arc overnight, to take the first pink jersey of the race.
The New Zealand time trial champion flew around the flat 2.5km course in a time of 3:04, to finish two seconds quicker than Russian Alexandra Burchenkova (RusVelo). Australian Lauren Kitchen (Wiggle Honda) completed the prologue podium with third place, with three minutes and nine seconds.
The week-long Tour de l’Ardeche features a prologue time trial and six stages and is being contested by 28 teams, including an Australian representative team led by Tiffany Cromwell. The race continues with stage 1 tomorrow, a 121km road race from Rochegude to Beauchastel.
Tour of the Murray begins today
The National Road Series (NRS) continues today with the start of the men’s Tour of the Murray in Mildura.
The six-day, seven-stage race begins with a 163km road race today from Mildura to Robinvale and features a total of five road races and two criteriums.
Nathan Earle (Huon-Genesys) leads the men’s NRS aggregate with 58 points, ahead of teammate Jack Haig (53 points) and Jack Anderson of Budget Forklifts (42 points).
Past winners of the men’s Tour of the Murray include Luke Davison, Nathan Haas, Pat Shaw, Will Clarke, Dave McKenzie and Brett Aitkin.
The women’s Tour of the Murray starts on Wednesday with a criterium in Swan Hill and features a total of two criteriums, two road races and an individual time trial.
Ruth Corset (Pensar) leads the women’s NRS aggregate with 69 points, ahead of teammate Katrin Garfoot (63 points) and Miranda Griffiths (26 points).
Past winners of the women’s Tour of the Murray include Ruth Corset, Grace Sulzberger, Jo Hogan and Kathy Watt.
Fernando Alonso drives to the rescue of Euskaltel-Euskadi
Two-time Spanish Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso has agreed to rescue financially troubled Basque cycling team Euskaltel Euskadi from collapse, the team announced overnight.
“Euskaltel and Fernando Alonso have reached an agreement in principle which guarantees a new future for the cycling team,” the team said in a statement. “Over the next weeks, negotiations between the parties will conclude with Fernando Alonso acquiring the company owning Euskaltel Euskadi, BCPT,” it said, without giving further financial details.
Euskaltel-Euskadi rider Samuel Sanchez said of Alonso:
“He’s shown he’s a great champion when he’s in his car and now he’s shown he’s a champion when he’s not racing, too. We have to welcome him now to our great sport, and what he’s done is something that a lot of fans will be grateful to him for. He’s shown he’s got a great heart.”
The Basque cycling team announced in August that it would shut down at the end of the year because it could not find a sponsor.
The team’s main sponsor, telecommunications company Euskaltel, had said it was looking for another sponsor to help with the running costs of the team after local government withdrew its 3.5 million euros ($5.1 million AUD) of public funding due to spending cuts.
Euskaltel filled that funding gap themselves for this season, taking their contribution to seven million of the team’s nine-million-euro budget. However, it had said that level of investment was unsustainable.
Text via AFP.
National Federations urge CAS to decide McQuaid’s fate
Five of cycling’s national federations, led by USA Cycling, have called on the UCI and president Pat McQuaid to remove uncertainty about the validity of McQuaid’s nominations for a third term in office, by letting the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) rule on the eligibility of such nominations.
The federations of the USA, Algeria, Canada, Finland and Russia have requested CAS make a judgment about the controversial proposed change to the UCI’s constitution that would allow a candidate to be nominated by any two national federations, not just their own.
In a letter seen by the website Inside The Games, USA Cycling president Steve Johnson told McQuaid and UCI director general Christophe Hubschmid:
“The cycling world has been watching the UCI Presidential race carefully and its reaction has varied from amusement to outrage, from bewilderment to astonishment,” it reads.
It goes on: “This uncertainty does not serve anyone’s interests, especially those of the delegates who rely on this year’s proceedings to allow the UCI to prove to the cycling world that the governance of their International Federation is ultimately grounded in the Constitution, and that the meaning of the Constitution is predictable and reliable.
“As a group, we believe strongly about the legal principles involved to ask a court to resolve this Constitutional dispute in due course.
“But we also care enough about our International Federation to try everything in our power to avoid a protracted battle that might cast the results of the election into doubt for many months to come.”
Linus Gerdemann embraces second chance
After winning a stage and wearing yellow in the 2007 Tour de France, and after winning a handful of stage races in the years after, Linus Gerdemann fell through the cracks and found himself without a contract for 2013.
But as was announced a few weeks ago, Gerdemann will ride for the African-based MTN-Qhubeka squad in 2014 and is more than looking forward to the opportunity.
“Of course I am super motivated to do well now that I can come back with this nice project of MTN. It is a great thing that it’s not only about cycling but to bring African kids on bikes and develop the sport on the African continent.”
Shane Stokes has written an interesting feature about Gerdemann and his comeback through MTN and you can read it over at VeloNation.
Riders to watch: the six best riders at the Tour de l’Avenir
The so-called “amateur Tour de France”, the Tour de l’Avenir was held last week with Spain’s Ruben Fernandez winning the general classification after a victory on stage 4’s mountaintop finish.
A feature article on Cycling News today looks at six of the best riders from the U23 race and explains why these are the riders to watch in the years to come.
As you’d expect, Ruben Fernandez is there, as is dual stage winner Adam Yates, but there’s no sign of Australia’s Caleb Ewan who also won two stages at this year’s race and looks destined for big things.
Ewan’s omission aside, the piece is still worth a look.
Click here to read the article at Cycling News.
”Inequality” kept Victoria Pendleton away from road racing
Former Olympic gold medalist and track world champion Victoria Pendleton has said she won’t return to cycling post-retirement and has pointed to gender inequality as the reason she didn’t turn to road cycling during her career.
“It was suggested to me that maybe I should consider road cycling long ago,” Pendleton told the Manchester Evening News.
“But I’ve never really had a huge desire to do it myself, mainly because of the inequality factor. When you see your male counterparts living a completely different lifestyle, I think it would be quite depressing! So no, it’s not for me.”
When asked if she thought women’s cycling was on the right track, Pendleton sounded optimistic.
“I think in terms of the track, women’s cycling has come a long way to be equal to the men’s side of racing. Road racing is a bit different – they are not quite there yet, but it is definitely progressing in the right direction,” she said.
“Having one or two strong teams isn’t going to be enough – it needs to be a whole cycling scene domestically and internationally, to give women something to train for. It is going to take a bit more time, but I think what has happened with the track has shown that it can be done.”
Click here to read more at road.cc.
Graeme Obree to attempt the Land Speed Record
Graeme Obree is most famous for having broken the World Hour Record twice and is now in preparations to take on the human-powered land speed record on a home-built bike.
In this report from Chanel 4 in the UK Obree talks about his record attempt, his motivations and the demons in his past.
The Rocacorba Recap
And finally this morning, here are a few things you might have missed: