Daily News Digest

by Shane Stokes

March 18, 2016

Photography by Kristof Ramon, Cor Vos


In today’s edition of the Daily News Digest: Sagan expresses ‘clear intention to win’ Milan-San Remo; Tom Dumoulin out of Milano-San Remo; Lotto Soudal confirms no Greipel for San Remo, Wellens and Gallopin amongst protected riders; Dennis making progress with recovery, will return to racing soon; Months after devastating Vuelta a España crash, Boeckmans returns to competition on Friday; Malaysian Youth and Sports Minister says Tour of Sarawak organisers could be blacklisted; Eight talking points from Paris-Nice and Tirreno-Adriatico; Unfinished business for Froome at Catalunya; Throwback – Fignon’s 1989 Sanremo double; SRAM issues recall for Zipp quick releases and front hubs; Best images from the 2016 Paris-Nice; Top 10 Riders to Watch: Milan-San Remo; Mountain Biking Down a Glacier

Tour San Luis 2016 2016 stage 3

Sagan expresses ‘clear intention to win’ Milan-San Remo

by Shane Stokes

Going close to victory numerous times this season, world champion Peter Sagan is open about his aim for Saturday’s Milan-San Remo. He’s chasing victory, and isn’t shy about stating that goal. “I will head to Milano-San Remo with the clear intention to win and I will do my best to achieve that victory,” he said on Thursday.

“It’s a Classic race that I like, with a long history and tradition. Although it seems easier than the Tour of Flanders or Paris-Roubaix, it is the toughest one to win. It is also very interesting and unpredictable because, even if the race course hasn’t changed this year it is a difficult one to predict.”

Sagan notes that every year sees a different set of circumstances. “There might be a breakaway, a bunch sprint or a crash that changes everything, you never know. With the climb of Le Manie cut from the race, sprinters now have a better chance. If they also are at the front in Poggio, we can have a sprint finish.

“However, it is difficult to single out who my main adversaries could be. It will depend on how the race plays out and what takes place on the Poggio. I will tackle the race the way it comes and right now I concentrate on giving my best. This is what I do in every race.”

Sagan was second in the recent Tirreno-Adriatico, finishing just one second behing Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing Team).

The CyclingTips Daily News Digest features the most important and interesting news and content from around the cycling world, published every weekday morning at 9am AEST. Get it delivered straight to your inbox.

Today’s feature image comes from the GP Samyn 2016 and was taken by Kristof Ramon.

  • velocite

    It is said that if an actor is sharing the stage with a cat all attention will be on the cat – because no-one knows what it will do. Contador is a bit of a cat: you know he’ll do something, but you don’t know when and what precisely. He makes every race he’s in more of a race. it aggression? Perhaps he’s riding to his physical strengths, just as does someone completely different, like Simon Gerrans? I recall Contador seemingly playing with Evans on some major climb in the Tour, can’t remember which climb or Tour, could have been 2007. He was able to do repeated short accelerations, that seems to be his signature tactic. Very seldom does anyone match him immediately. In that final Paris-Nice stage Porte didn’t exactly stick to his rear wheel like glue, he measured his effort and got there in the end. I believe he’s trained himself to ride out of the saddle, but is there something about his basic physiology that gives him that ability to put in big accelerations?

    • jules

      you can train for FTP-style steady efforts, or for short-and-sharp accelerations and to recover from them. everyone’s physiology is different. Contador is clearly a rider who is given to that style of riding and/or has trained himself that way. he’s doing the right thing by bringing others out of their comfort zones.

    • Kieran Degan

      One thing is for sure. I’ll miss him when he’s gone. Not many riders can light up a race like him.

      • Sean

        Absolutely agree, he is one of the most exciting climber and GT riders I can remember. I was only a kid when Pantani was at his peak, I can’t remember him attacking from 50km out like conto does.

  • George Hayduke

    omg another sram recall. so glad i dont have to deal with them anymore.

    • jules

      recalls are a sign the company is taking the safety of their customers seriously. companies don’t like recalls – they are expensive and risk damaging the brand. the easy – and by far the most common option – is to deny that there’s a problem. SRAM are behaving very well here.

      • George Hayduke

        so they have products that regularly fail on a mass scale and that’s okay? damage to the brand is that it doesn’t work to begin with.

        • jules

          google “shimano recall”

        • VELOcamp

          SRAM will have a product recall insurance policy in place, and will be advised by their broker / insurer to issue the recall. The costs or brand damage of a recall are likely to be much fewer or lower than catastrophic product failure and the associated risks that accompany that – i.e the wheel coming off while descending at speed.

          If I owned these hubs, I would by far prefer them to publicise an issue they found, rather then bury it, and it is of course the responsibility of companies and manufacturers to inform us.

          Surely they should be respected for this. As Jules said, it is much easier to deny there’s a problem.

          • Dave

            It would have been much better to get it right before putting it on sale, or at least lower their prices during the phase when customers are being used as crash test dummies.

            I bet there won’t be any recalls with the Campagnolo road disc brakes.

    • velocite

      You clearly are anti-SRAM, George. Me, I’m pro SRAM, so I see their handling of the hydraulic brake problems as exemplary. They break new ground, a plus, and I don’t see how they could have responded better to the problem. They kept us all informed, they provided interim solutions and they ended with a solution. But they do seem to be proceeding more circumspectly with e-Tap.

      • George Hayduke

        i dunno, maybe its from working as a mechanic for a decade and seeing all their products fail prematurely. bonus: i was working at the race all the hydro brakes suddenly quit. everyone was so stoked their brand new bikes were broken.

        • velocite

          My understanding was that the hydro brake problem was to do with the fluid misbehaving, initially at very low temperatures but after that it became confused. Tell more about that race. What race, and what happened?

          • George Hayduke

            late on the response here, but the failure stemmed from an improper boring of the “taper bore” reservoir thing SRAM uses to run their brakes. There was rubber bladder in there that wouldn’t seal in cold temps, below 15f-ish. At that race, the fateful weekend their whole system failed, it was around 5-10f and suddenly all the new brake levers pulled to the bar and would not hold a bleed. Once the bikes warmed up a bit, we could get them to work for maybe a few days before the system seaped air.

            The fluid was never an issue, just poorly designed and manufactured hardware. It’s an ongoing issue with their products, very, very, very poor quality control. Interesting ideas and applications, but man they need to get it together on the assembly line. I guess they handled the recall okay, but they had to scramble hard to get something together. We had like 60 bikes on the shop floor with the new brakes, all had to be replaced. Hella labor intensive, it sucked.

            • velocite

              OK, thanks for that, interesting experiences.

    • pedr09

      I hear a fair bit of SRAM hate out on the road from people that are just ignorant and repeat what other people say. I’ve mucked up a few shifts in large bunches only to hear “SRAM!” from some smart arse nearby. I’m not great at drivetrain maintenance so I’m not a good advertisement for them but I’ve had Shimano before and I had the same problems and niggles from time to time. Would I go back to Shimano or try Campy on a new bike? Nope, I love the way SRAM works.


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