roadside 'goodbye Tom Boonen' actions have already started

Tour de l'EuromÈtropole 2016 (1.1)
Poperinge õ Tournai (196km)/ Belgium

Your Friday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

October 7, 2016


In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Bennett wins photo finish at Paris-Bourges; Tiernan-Locke says British team ‘freely offered’ Tramadol around at 2012 world championships; Amy Pieters moves to Boels-Dolmans to bolster classics squad in 2017; Travis Tygart calls on IOC to establish independent anti-doping system; Cavendish battling illness leading up to World Championships; Brändle out of World Championships with illness; Van der Sande, Vanendert, Armée and Marczynski re-sign with Lotto-Soudal; Spratt, Elvin continue with ORICA-AIS; Baugnies and McNally extend with Wanty-Groupe Gobert; Israeli Cycling Academy signs American Williams; New ‘sustainable’ pro team in the works for 2018; Giacoppo wins back-to-back at Tour of Tasmania; Swiss Team Roth to fold as pro team; Teaser Women’s Team Time Trial World Championship; TTT training camp with Canyon SRAM.

Bennett wins photo finish at Paris-Bourges

by CyclingTips

The wind wreaked havoc on the peloton at Paris-Bourges, but it all came down to a sprint with Irishman Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon18) taking the win narrowly ahead of Alexander Porsev (Katusha) and Rudy Barbier (Roubaix Lille Métropole).

“A week ago I thought my season was over because of illness, and now I am on my way back after winning a race. That’s great for the morale. I still don’t have high expectations for Qatar but will see how Paris-Tours goes. Maybe the 250 kilometres there will give me a boost in form.”

The main break of the day consisted of five riders. Cofidis was intent on making the race a field sprint for Nacer Bouhanni, and combined with the wind, it was an impossible feat for the break to hold.

The final two of the break, Quentin Jauregui (AG2R) and Elie Gesbert (Fortunéo-Vital Concept), were caught at 16 kilometres to go.

“Two corners before the finish I was at the wheel of Bouhanni,” said Bennett. “Coquard was also there and tried to push him a little, both had to break then and I came around them outside. On the home straight a waited really long before I push hard. In the end I just got Prosev be a few millimetres. I did not expect that at all today, therefore it is even more satisfying now.”

1. ie
Bora-Argon 18
2. ru
PORSEV Alexander
Team Katusha
3. fr
Roubaix Lille Métropole

Today’s feature image is from the Tour de l’EuromÈtropole, showing fans already starting their appreciation of Tom Boonen ahead of his planned retirement after Paris-Roubaix.

  • Sir Wiggo

    So glad we’re looking to guys like JTL for advice / insight into doping practices in cycling.

    I’m not sure why though; after all – last I heard he was still professing his innocence.

    Someone buy that man* a drink.

    * By man I mean tool.

    • Yeah, cause no one who ever doped has told the truth . His statements are consistent with the accusation that Michael Barry admitted to taking tramadol on Team Sky – yet of course, back then Team Sky denied it.

      • Sir Wiggo

        Newsflash Fabio: JTL didn’t dope. He just drank a lot and got dehydrated.

        So your “” comment is unfortunately really redundant.

        The guy has shown no remorse for his actions. He’s not come clean.

        Hence why I’m not going to listen to him.

    • jules

      you do realise that attempts to discredit ex-dopers who are bitter about being scape-goated while others continue on their merry way are often precisely made for that reason – to protect ongoing doping?

      it’s kind of like jumping the fence into a gig with your mates, and one gets caught by security. then everyone else laughs and encourages security to lock him up and he tries to dob them in, but security says “why would we believe you? fence jumper” yep, it’s like that

      • Sir Wiggo

        Yes, except the guy caught by the security guard is proclaiming that he didn’t jump the fence: despite the fact he had one leg hanging over each side of it as the guard pulled him down.

        • jules

          2 separate issues:
          1. is JTL a doper? (last I checked I think he was)
          2. are others doping or engaging in practices flying very close to the wind? (JTL claiming yes)

          I don’t see the point of focusing on #1 in context of discussing #2

          • Sir Wiggo

            Yes 2 different issues:

            1. JTL is a doper. Unless you ask him. He still professes his innocence.

            2. Everyone knows that doping still exists in cycling.

            I don’t think we need to focus on point number 2 with a person of the ilk of point number 1.

            Michael Barry has already explained SKY’s use of Tramadol.

            • jules

              but Barry is also a doper, just like JTL?

              if you take cyber-crime as a case study for the value regulators place on intelligence offered by convicted crims (persons who have been found to have violated applicable regulations – criminal or sports doping) – they take a very different line to what you’re proposing. they place a high value on that intel, for 2 reasons:
              1. they are authoritative on the subject, and
              2. after being caught, they have less motivation to mislead the authorities than someone who is yet to be caught

              that doesn’t mean JTL should just be taken at his word. but I’d argue that his credibility is potentially higher than the large number of pros whose reputations are squeaky clean, but in reality are just yet to be caught and have a stronger incentive to spread the “it’s the new cycling, it’s much cleaner now, let’s move on” message. I’ll listen to JTL over them.

              • Sir Wiggo

                Barry is a doper.

                JTL is a doper.

                One has confessed, the other hasn’t.

                I have also said – in other posts – that I don’t doubt, for a moment, what JTL is saying is true.

                I just don’t need to hear from a guy, who in reality, isn’t that far removed from a Ricco. (Aside from the fact that obviously Ricco is Italian and JTL is English speaking, and hence is more credible.)

    • Wily_Quixote

      Tramadol isn’t doping. Whatever JTL has to say about tramadol ought to be taken at face value. It doesn’t mean that he is telling the truth but I do not see the connection and I do not think that comments by ex-dopers have any more or less veracity than any other athlete.

      Any athlete may be/has been/could be a doper and all comments by athletes ought to be taken at face value and the comments should be examined on their own merit. Assuming ex-dopers are always liars about every issue goes a long way to promoting omerta.

      All you can do is point to potential bias in JTL’s comment and I am not convinced that their is any gain to be made by revealing mysterious tramadol pushers in the peleton.

      • Sir Wiggo

        Not saying JTL is lying. Just saying JTL is an unrepentant dope, who I don’t need to listen to.

  • Sir Wiggo
  • Bex

    Has anyone done an interview with Wiggle management lately, is it my perception or has the whole team changed dramatically. It seems all their big names are signing elsewhere and their DS was dropped/left mid season?

  • Timiji

    Not to turn the discussion away from doping, because … ok, it’s time, kinda… wasn’t WADA set up to be independent of, or at least arms length from, the IOC? So what is Tygart really after?

    • jules

      this get complex, so someone can correct me on details, but – WADA are not really an anti-doping body. they are an umbrella body that oversees the large range of WADA-accredited anti-doping bodies. these include:
      1. sports-based bodies (inc. the UCI for cycling)
      2. national anti-doping bodies (ASADA in Australia)

      then there is the IOC. I don’t believe the IOC conducts anti-doping tests, but it is responsible for co-ordinating how tests are to be done for the Olympics. I think this involves engaging national testers (e.g. Brazilians in Rio Olympics) and verifying that proper doping controls are being administered to athletes in IOC-accredited sports (athletics, etc. – which is why Russian athletics Olympians were banned).

      #1 and #2 are pretty hopeless, as:
      1. sports (the UCI) don’t want their athletes to be shown up as dopers
      2. national bodies – same, same

      so that leaves WADA or the IOC. it’s a big job and requires lots of money, so that eliminates WADA. leaving the IOC.

      • Dave

        I’m not convinced that WADA would be the right body even if they had the money. Their job is to set the rules (i.e. the ‘legislator’) and that’s probably best kept separate from the policing of those rules.

        Allowing them to appeal doping cases where the national anti-doping bodies haven’t shown enough interest or need a bit more firepower is as close as they should get to it.

        > I think this involves [the IOC] verifying that proper doping controls are being administered to athletes in IOC-accredited sports (athletics, etc. – which is why Russian athletics Olympians were banned).

        It doesn’t. That one was all the work of the IAAF, not the IOC.

        Once the IOC got involved with trying to ban certain Russian athletes in other sports, it got overturned on appeal at CAS because they tried banning them without having a good reason to do so. This could be fixed if the next version of the WADA Code allows event organisers the absolute right to decline entries from previously sanctioned dopers.

        > 1. sports (the UCI) don’t want their athletes to be shown up as dopers

        Some sports are better than others at this, for example the IAAF which assembled such a comprehensive case on the Russian athletics doping program that they were able to get the decision sustained on appeal at CAS.

        I agree about the UCI. All the evidence points towards the UCI being only moderately anti-doping, only for the purposes of managing scandals and not getting kicked out of the Olympics.

        • jules

          good points – particularly on the split between making and upholding regulations. this is a big issue that affects many aspects of our society, not just sport. but I won’t go on..

          I disagree on the IAAF though. weren’t they implicated in being asleep at the wheel with doping in athletics for so long? yes, they went after the Ruscis, but I believe Putin on this point – it was political. kind of like Tygart chasing Armstrong. yes, he was guilty, but the timing and environment was right too. it’s selective upholding of the rules.

          • Dave

            I’m not sure that any sport has a perfectly clean history, but the IAAF going after a *current* institutional doping program after getting the info from Stepanova and other whistleblowers is certainly some good recent form to go on.

            They also targeted the Jamaicans, and found nothing worth getting excited about.

            The UCI certainly won’t be doing that any time soon, unless someone other than Makarov’s favoured candidate (which might not necessarily be Cookson again) accidentally wins the presidency next year.

  • Laurens

    In the still of that women’s TTT promo video, what do the two riders closest to the camera have in their tops? Is that the button for the radio? Looks a bit clunky. Is it a little bottle? Does anybody know?

    • I would think it’s a small bottle of energy gel. But I could be wrong.

      • Dave

        That’s what it looks like to me too. You can’t take on drinks from the team car during a TTT.

        I hope it’s worth it, as it appears to be holding the top of the skin suit open like a parachute.

      • Laurens

        Thanks Matt (and Dave). I thought they carried gels under the shorts but preferences vary probably. It seems like the only logical explanation.

        • Dave

          If the preferred product is a drink in a hard plastic bottle rather than a gel in a flat plastic tube, in the top there would make far more sense than digging into the rider’s thigh – at least for those who use skinsuits with rear zippers.

          At the top there would be an area where there is already disrupted airflow rather than messing up a smooth area, and avoid the need to stop pedalling while they dig it out.

    • Mark Zalewski

      Also, this is a video of them training, so might not be something for ‘game day.’


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