Rocacorba Daily: Friday April 12

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Welcome to this morning’s edition of the Rocacorba. Today, we’ve got the results from stage 1 of the Tour de Perth, the first race in the 2013 men’s National Road Series, we’ve got a bunch of information about Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race, the usual mix of news and interesting tid-bits and a couple of videos to make your Friday just that little bit easier. Enjoy, and have a great weekend!

Jack Anderson wins stage 1 of the Tour de Perth

Team Budget Forklifts has had a great start to the 2013 men’s National Road Series, going one-two in the first stage of the Tour de Perth.

Jack Anderson took out 80km road race on the iconic Rottnest Island, ahead of teammate Sam Horgan and Neil Van der Ploeg (Search2Retain P/B

Anderson was part of an eight-man breakaway which formed within the first 40km, including Jack Haig and Joe Cooper (Huon Salmon Genesys Wealth Advisers), Josh Taylor (GPM Data#3), Eric Sheppard (Search2Retain) and Samuel Volkers (Pro Team Downunder). The group worked well together to hold off a desperate chasing peloton.

Today’s second stage of the four-stage tour is a 20km individual time trial on a course that’s very similar to the route used in yesterday’s road race.

Click here to see the results from stage 1 of the 2013 Tour de Perth. Click here to read more about the Tour de Perth on the National Road Series website.

Amstel Gold Race defending champion in collision with truck

Last year’s winner of the Amstel Gold Race, Enrico Gasparotto (Astana), hit a truck at high speed on Thursday while training behind a motor scooter in Italy, just three days ahead of this year’s edition of the race.

Gasparotto, who was the Italian national champion in 2005, was training near Lake Como with Astana Pro Team Director Sportif Stefano Zanini when a delivery truck pulled out of a driveway unexpectedly to turn left across the road. Zanini was able to brake his motor scooter and avoid a collision, but Gasparotto could not stop completely and crashed first into the truck and then onto the road.

“It was impossible to brake. We were going 45 maybe 50k on a little bit of a descent, and it was impossible not to crash. I was very, very lucky that there was no real damage. My body is a little bit hurt, and my bike was not so good. I have a little bit of pain right now, but today is Thursday, and I can go to the osteopath tonight and everything should be good by Sunday,” Gasparotto said.

Enrico Gasparotto wins the 2012 Amstel Gold Race.

Zanini said he was angry at the driver, but happy that Gasparotto was apparently unhurt.

“The crash happened in the first hour of training, and we stopped to yell at the driver for about 20 minutes. But Gaspa got back on his bike and rode at the same level for the rest of the training session,” Zanini said.

Via Astana press release.

Simon Gerrans previews Amstel Gold

Here’s an excerpt from an Orica-GreenEDGE press release in which Simon Gerrans previews Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race:

The final part of Amstel Gold has been changed this year. Instead of finishing on the Cauberg, the race now finishes 1200 metres beyond the top of the climb. The road race at the Road World Championships last year featured this finish, but Amstel Gold features much more climbing than last year’s Worlds course. It’s hard to predict how the finish can and will change the way the race unfolds.

Typically, this is a race of attrition. It gets harder and harder and faster and faster as the day goes on, and with each new difficulty, the front group becomes more and more select. The strongest guys on the day are left to contest the win.

You can read Gerro’s full preview here, at the Orica-GreenEDGE website.

Startlist for Amstel Gold Race

Click here to see the startlist for Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race.

And in case you missed it yesterday, check out this cool video of the Amstel Gold Race parcours, overlaid with an instrumental version of a Coldplay’s Viva La Vida for good measure.

UCI suspends Russia’s Kaykov over doping

(AFP) – Cycling’s global governing body the UCI on Thursday announced that Russian rider Valery Kaykov had been suspended provisionally after failing an out-of-competition doping test.

The UCI said that it acted after a lab in the German city of Cologne, accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency, found that an A-sample of Kaykov’s urine contained GW1516 sulfone.

The substance was found in a test conducted on March 17 and is a so-called metabolic modulator — which helps boost the production of hormones which can enhance an athlete’s performance.

“The provisional suspension of Mr. Valery Kaykov remains in force until a hearing panel convened by the Russian Cycling Federation determines whether he has committed an anti-doping rule violation under Article 21 of the UCI Anti-Doping Rules,” the governing body said.

The RusVelo rider has the right to request a test of his B sample, the UCI added.

Click here to read more about the “next-gen” drug GW1516.

Doctors confirm a fractured sternum for Offredo

FDJ rider Yoann Offredo, who crashed in spectacular fashion at last Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix, has confirmed via Twitter that he has a fractured sternum and cracked ribs from the fall.

If you haven’t already seen Offredo’s crash, here it is:

UCI puts “no unsanctioned races” rule on hold

The UCI has “postponed strict enforcement” of a rule that would prevent UCI license holders from participating in events that have “not been included on a national, continental or world calendar or that [have] not been recognized by a national federation, a continental confederation or the UCI”.

This rule, number 1.2.019, isn’t new but the UCI sent out a memo earlier this week saying that it was pushing for strict enforcement. They’ve since changed their stance somewhat, issuing a short press release which reads, in full:

“The UCI listened to the feedback from the various groups involved and who feel affected by a strict and immediate enforcement of rule 1.2.019 and its associated sanctions. The UCI has decided to postpone strict enforcement of rule 1.2.019 in 2013 with the expectation that all stakeholders (National Federations, race directors, teams and riders) will discuss and do what is necessary to prepare for the rule’s full enforcement in 2014.”

Click here to read an analysis of the situation over at The Inner Ring.

Cyclists dress like police to slow drivers down

If you do any of your riding on busy city streets you’ve no doubt had occasions where motorists have come a little too close to you. Well here’s something that could help.

Some cyclists in London have taken to wearing high-visibility clothing that looks like a police uniform in order to make motorists a little more cautious when passing.

The bright yellow bibs have a blue-and-white reflective border and an embossed message that says “POLITE notice THINK BIKE”

Nicky Fletcher, managing director of Equisafety, said: “One cyclist told us [wearing the high-vis clothing] was like [having] a ‘force field’ around him.”

Click here to read more at the London Evening Standard.

Team MTN Qhubeka: An African Bicycle Dream, lands today

We’ve written a bit about Team MTN-Qhubeka in recent weeks and we reckon it’s an exciting and promising initiative for African cycling. We’ll be looking out for the first episode of their doco which lands sometime today, but in the meantime, here’s the trailer.

Lance Armstrong sells his house

You might have seen a bit of buzz around about the latest instalment in the Lance Armstrong saga. In this episode, the Texan has sold his house. No need to write a feature story on it when the story basically comes down to this:

Armstrong has sold his $10 million house in Austin, to some guy, for much less than $10 million. Armstrong can use the proceeds from the sale to [insert speculation here]. Oh, and don’t forget the obligatory mention of “that photo” taken on the couch inside that house.

Episode 4 of The Bike Lane’s Spring Classics season

In case you missed this week’s episode of The Bike Lane, why not catch up now, or watch it in your lunch break? It features Matt, Scott and Wade discussing Cancellara’s Paris-Roubaix win (briefly), the benefits of running for cyclists, who to watch in Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race, and more.

Click here to watch the episode.

Video: Gracie Elvin previews the Energiewacht Tour ITT

And finally, here’s the latest video from Orica-AIS rider Gracie Elvin, shot during the team’s reconnaissance of the Energiewacht Tour ITT course.

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