Rocacorba Daily: Friday April 19

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Good morning and welcome to the Rocacorba. It’s Friday which means there’s a weekend of cycling ahead of us, but before that, why not check out the latest and greatest from the world of cycling? We’ve got some race results, some race previews and some other stuff that’s not race related at all. Have a great weekend!

Santaromita wins Stage 3 of the Giro del Trentino

Ivan Santaromita (BMC) has won the third stage of the Giro del Trentino overnight, outsprinting Paolo Tiralongo (Astana) and Michele Scarponi (Lampre-Merida) to claim the first road race victory of his professional career.

The three riders had been part of a breakaway that formed on the Fai della Paganella after roughly 50km of racing. Scarponi broke the group apart on the final climb of the day, but Tiralongo and Santaromita managed to scramble back to the Italian’s wheel and the three riders crested the final climb together with 16km to race.

Scarponi managed to force Tiralongo to the front to lead out the final sprint but in the end it was Santaromita that passed them both to take the win.

Maxime Bouet (Ag2r-La Mondiale) retained his overall lead and sits 3:19 ahead of stage-2 winner Kanstantin Siutsou (Sky) and 3:48 ahead of reigning Tour de France champion Bradley Wiggins (Sky). Tonight’s final stage takes riders 168km from Arco to Sega di Ala and includes a steep 14.6km climb to finish the race.

Click here to see the full results from stage 3 of the 2013 Giro del Trentino.

Liege-Bastogne-Liege is almost here

Liege-Bastogne-Liege is the biggest and oldest of the Spring Classics and on Sunday a winner will be crowned in the 2013 edition. “La Doyenne” doesn’t have as many climbs as the Amstel Gold Race, but the 11 climbs it does have a considerably longer than those we saw last weekend.

Who’s going to win? We like the look of Philippe Gilbert, Alejandro Valverde, Simon Gerrans and possibly even Michal Kwiatkowski. But as ever, we’ll have to wait and see how the race unfolds.

In the meantime, check out our preview of the race and click here to see the provisional start list.

Cancellara to skip the Giro and the Tour

After a dominant Spring Classics season Fabian Cancellara will miss the Giro d’Italia and Tour de France, instead focusing on the World Championships road race in Tuscany in September.

“It’s 100 per cent certain that he will ride the Vuelta a España to prepare for the Worlds in Florence,” the team’s general manager, Luca Guercilena told Belgium’s Het Nieuwsblad newspaper yesterday.

While Cancellara hasn’t yet won a World Championship road race, he does have four World Time Trial Championship victories to his name.

Click here to read more on CyclingWeekly.

Belgium’s worst Spring Classics since 1945?

It’s not very often that Belgium has a poor Spring Classics season but if a Belgian doesn’t win Liege-Bastogne-Liege this Sunday, it will be the first season since 1945 that a Belgian rider hasn’t won at least one of the classics or semi-classics. No pressure Philippe.

In 1997 and 2007 a Belgian didn’t win one of the top seven Classics, but the nation did boast the winner of at least one semi-classic on each of those years.

CyclingNews cites three reasons for the dearth of Belgian victories this season: Tom Boonen’s injuries and average early-season form, the rise of Peter Sagan, and Fabian Cancellara’s return to world-beating form.

Click here to read more on Cycling News.

Chris Hoy retires

(AFP) – Olympic great Chris Hoy announced his retirement from cycling with immediate effect on Thursday. The six-time Olympic champion, Britain’s most successful Olympic competitor, bows out at the age of 37 after a career in which he became the most decorated cyclist in the history of the Games.

Hoy overtook rower Steve Redgrave as Britain’s most successful Olympian at last year’s Games in London, when he claimed gold medals in the team sprint and the keirin.

He had hoped to continue competing until next year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, where the cycling event will be held at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, but said he was no longer capable of competing at the highest level.

Chris Hoy fast-facts

Name: Christopher Andrew Hoy
Place of birth: Edinburgh, Scotland
Discipline: track cycling
Major honours:
Olympics: six gold medals, one silver medal
World Championships: 11 gold medals, eight silver medals, six bronze medals
European Championships: one bronze medal
Commonwealth Games: two gold medals, two bronze medals
Individual honours:
BBC Sports Personality of the Year: 2008
Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE, for services to cycling): 2008
Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II (for services to sport): 2009

Interview with Michal Kwiatkowski

Michal Kwiatkowski probably wasn’t on your radar before this season, but after his exploits in the Spring Classics, he’s a name you’re unlikely to forget. Kwiatkowski did a mountain of work at the front during the Tour of Flanders, he finished fourth at the Amstel Gold Race and fifth at Fleche-Wallonne.

In this interview with Gregor Brown for VeloNews, Kwiatkowski talks about finding his feet in the classics and trying to work out if he’s better suited to the cobbled classics or the Ardennes.

Click here to read the article on VeloNews.

Johan Bruyneel gets back to his blog

It’s been a while between drinks for Johan Bruyneel but the former Radioshack-Leopard director sportif has taken to his blog overnight to publish a new post. He touches on the fact that there’s an ongoing investigation into his involvement in the Armstrong saga before giving his thoughts on the season so far, not least Fabian Cancellara’s dominant form.

Click here to read Johan’s latest blog post.

Giro Rosa promo video

We’re starting to hear the first bits of chatter about the upcoming Giro d’Italia in May but remember, it’s not just the men that are preparing for an Italian grand tour. The 2013 women’s Giro Rosa, which was only confirmed recently, will be run over eight stages from June 30 to July 7.

Here’s the promo video:

Sat-nav warns London lorry drivers of cyclists

(AFP) A British firm has unveiled a sat-nav system that warns lorry drivers when they are approaching roads where they are at high risk of hitting a cyclist. Navevo’s device is currently limited to providing alerts in 100 danger spots in London, but the company hopes to extend the project in the future.

“I do believe this will save lives at some point,” the company’s CEO Nick Caesari told AFP. “It does slow people down and increase their awareness of hazards in the road. Of course, we may never know if it has saved a life — but if it saves even one person it will have been worth it.”

The system works by providing visual and sound alerts to lorry drivers as they approach roads popular with both cyclists and heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

Lorries make up just five percent of London’s traffic but they are involved in half of the city’s cyclist deaths. The list of 100 danger spots is based on data provided by Transport for London, the city’s transport authority.

Click here to

What makes Colombian cyclists so good?

It’s been a good year for Colombian cycling with Nairo Quintana, Sergio Henao and others forcing us to sit and up take notice. The Inner Ring has written a piece looking at Colombian cycling and considering whether living at 3,000m of altitude gives Colombian cyclists a bit of a leg up compared to those of us that live closer to sea level. Well worth a read.

Click here to read the article on The Inner Ring.

Bringing bamboo bikes to the masses

Custom builders around the world have been using bamboo for bike frames for several years now but they’ve hardly been cheap. But according to this article in, there’s a company called Aluboo that’s trying to change that.

Rather than building one-off custom frames, Aluboo has been doing small-batch production on bamboo frames, making the bikes affordable. How affordable? Around $700 for a bamboo frame and around $1,400 for a full bamboo bike.

Click here to

An electric bike that cyclists can love?

This short film is about Adam Vollmer and his Faraday Cycles’ goal to “build a truly, unique electric bike — one that cyclists can actually love”.

Shot in San Francisco this video is about more than just electric bikes — it’s about the joy of cycling and the slow but steady shift to a more bike-friendly culture. Enjoy.

The Bike Lane – From Amstel to Liege

And finally, in case you missed it….

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