Rocacorba Daily: Wednesday, March 27

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Good morning and welcome to another edition of the Rocacorba Daily news roundup. Three Days De Panne started in Belgium yesterday and again Sagan showed his form in a stage that he described as, “It wasn’t a true race”. He’s making the best riders in the Pro Peloton look like a bunch of C-Graders. Other than that, it’s not a big day for the headlines so we’re left to report on a bunch of non-news items as well as an in-depth look at which POV camera is the best. Enjoy!

Sagan takes Stage 1 of Driedaagse De Panne

Peter Sagan (Cannondale) is showing no signs of slowing down ahead of Tour of Flanders. Yesterday at Driedaagse (Three Days) De Panne he gave another demonstration of his versatility and spring classics form by winning the first stage of after going on the attack in the final 20km.

Sagan surged clear several times on the final climbs, dragging a group of 10 riders with him to the finish but still had the speed to outsprint Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) and Arnaud Demare (FDJ).

Peter Sagan (Canondale) throws it across the line ahead of Arnaud Demare (FdJ) the first stage of the Driedaagse van De Panne (Three Days de Panne)

Asked by CyclingWeekly if all this racing was too much ahead of Flanders, he said that he could dial it back if he needs to.

“I’ll see tomorrow how it’ll go. Last year, I was able to win the first stage and on the second day it didn’t go so well. I think to win the GC, with the third day and going all out in the crono would be throwing away too much energy for Flanders,” Sagan said in a press conference after his win in Zottegem.

“We’ll see tomorrow how it goes; however, I think it was more about good training today rather than a true race.”

Other Tour of Flanders favorites Chavanel and Boonen came in 4th and 19th respectively. Cancellara sat this one out.

See video of final kilometers, full results and general classification from stage 1 of Driedaagse De Panne here

Ciolek returns to action after Sanremo win

Gerald Ciolek (MTN-Qhubeka) returned to action overnight in the Driedaagse van De Panne after his surprise Milano-Sanremo victory last week. Yesterday he came in 33rd position on stage 1 in which Sagan took the win.

Gerald Ciolek outsprints Milan - San Remo favorites Sagan and Cancellara and after a short break he's now back racing.

He said he had time to reflect on the win while at home in Cologne, Germany.

“I celebrated during a nice dinner with friends and family. It really just felt like a usual week, with two days off and then back on the bike training,” Ciolek told Cycling Weekly.

“[It’s] a great story, we were there as a wildcard team and we took home the victory,” Ciolek said. “If you look at the riders who were racing in Milan-San Remo, like Songezo Jim, who just learnt to ride the bike a few years ago. These are the great stories beside the race.”

The African team raced thanks to a wildcard invitation, fielding the first Black African Songezo Jim along with Ciolek.

Wiggins not worried

Bradley Wiggins (Sky) appears behind after crushing his competition in every stage race last year heading to the Tour de France. As goal number one approaches, the Giro d’Italia, he has only managed fifth overall in the Volta a Catalunya.

The Brit said he is not worried.

“I’m happy with my training and I’m happy with the level that I’ve found,” Wiggins told France’s L’Equipe newspaper. “At times, I thought I’d never make it [through Catalunya]. This week has been pretty good to me.”

Wiggins started his season in the Challenge Mallorca, where he place 161st and 152nd in stages. At the Tour of Oman, he placed 74th. In contrast, last year he placed second in the Volta ao Algarve, won Paris-Nice, Tour de Romandie and Critérium du Dauphiné.

Read more here.

Hesjedal’s aim on Giro d’Italia

Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) is aiming on repeating his Giro d’Italia win before worrying about the Tour de France. Like last year, he wants to close the Giro in good form for the French Grand Tour.

“I am not thinking too far ahead right now I want to do my best with the No. 1 bib at the Giro and go from there,” Hesjedal told VeloNews. “Just based on my experience, I always come out of the Giro in a good way.”

Ryder Hesjedal and Joaquin Rodriguez fight it out on stage 20 of the 2012 Giro d'Italia which Hesjedal eventually won the overall in the final ITT the next day. Photo: RCS Sport

Hesjedal became Canada’s first Giro d’Italia winner last year, defeating Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil-DCM). He looked ready to challenge for the Giro-Tour double, but was taken out in the “Metz massacre” in stage six of the Tour.

Read more here.

Boonen goes retro

Tom Boonen (OmegaPharma-Quick Step) took on a retro look for a special magazine in Belgian daily, Het Nieuwsblad. He gladly played along – dressed in retro gloves, helmet and jersey – to celebrate the 100th edition of the Ronde van Vlaanderen this Sunday.

Read more here.

Cycling Ireland holds key to McQuaid’s UCI re-election

Pat McQuaid’s bid to run for a third term as head of cycling’s governing body (UCI) hinges on a meeting at home. Cycling Ireland will decide this week in Dublin whether it will nominate him to run again.

“There appears to be three possible outcomes to the meeting,” wrote Velonation. “The board decides to back McQuaid’s third bid for presidency, it declines to do so, or it allows the members to decide, calling an [meeting] where the clubs would vote on the matter.”

Critics have called his presidency into doubt because of the Lance Armstrong scandal. Over the winter, Change Cycling Now (CCN) called for three-time Tour de France winner, Greg LeMond to step in temporarily.

Read more here.

Inside Cannondale’s Gent-Wevelgem

After Peter Sagan’s win at Gent-Wevelgem on Sunday, Team Cannondale put out their own version of “Backstage Pass”.

POV Action Cam Shootout – Which Camera Is The Best?

If you’re in the market for a GoPro, Contour, or any other POV (point of view) video camera to capture your riding escapades, there is a very good and thorough article on RoadBikeReview which compares six of the big names: Contour+2, the GoPro Hero3 Black, the JVC Adixxion, the Sony Action Cam, the Replay XD1080, and the Drift Ghost HD – the top POV cameras in terms of features, specs and performance.

(View in 1080p and full screen for best results)

In the end, the following conclusions were made in the review:

Best Video Quality: GoPro Hero3 Black Edition
Best Value: Sony Action Cam
Easiest To Use: JVC Adixxion
Best Overall: GoPro Hero3 Black

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