Cycling Australia responds to Michael Rogers’ provisional suspension

Cycling Australia (CA) CEO Adrian Anderson yesterday responded to the provisional suspension of Michael Rogers following the discovery of clenbuterol in a urine sample collected during a test at the Japan Cup on 20 October 2013.

Amgen Tour of California

“CA were alerted of the positive test via the UCI media release this morning.” said Anderson yesterday.

“Whilst we respect Michael Rogers’ right to defend himself, we will support the maximum sanctions under the WADA code if he is found guilty of doping.”

“The fact that the drug testing process continues to uncover positive tests should be a lesson to all cyclists that if they chose to dope they can expect to be caught.”

“For too long the sport of cycling has been let down at the international level by drug cheats and CA supports every measure to detect and prosecute doping offenders.”

Rogers does not hold an Australian racing licence and if he is found guilty the sanctions will not be determined by Cycling Australia.

In light of this Anderson added, “CA will support WADA, ASADA and the applicable National Federation in whatever action they deem appropriate.”

CA has said it is fully committed to clean cycling and in accordance with CA Policy every staff member, coach and rider who represented Australia in international competition from 2013 onwards is required to sign a no-doping statutory declaration stating that they have never participated in any illegal doping practices.

Text via Cycling Australia press release.

Rogers faces a tough fight to defend doping charge

Much has been written over the past 24 hours or so about Mick Rogers’ positive test for clenbuterol but we reckon this piece from Fairfax’s Rupert Guinness is worth a read.

In it Rupert talks about the need for Rogers to provide scientific proof that the substance entered his body inadvertently, rather than just relying on circumstantial or anecdotal evidence. If he can’t provide scientific proof, and his B sample returns evidence of clenbuterol, Rogers will face two years on the sidelines, potentially ending his career.

Here’s a quote from the piece:

“Rogers was named in the USADA report, but with no suggestion that he had used drugs, and not in relation to the charges against Armstrong.

He left his Sky team for Saxo-Tinkoff and said his move was not related to the USADA report, or Sky’s zero tolerance policy to doping where all riders and staff must sign a declaration that they have not had any involvement or implication in doping.

This was despite Rogers conceding that his previously admitted link with banned Italian doctor Michele Ferrari in 2005 and 2006 when he rode on the German T-Mobile team had been a mistake and may have “tainted” his reputation despite him saying it was for training advice and not drug use.”

Click here to read the article at the Sydney Morning Herald.

Valverde to tackle at least one cobbled race before Le Tour

With next year’s Tour de France featuring a stage on the cobbled roads used in Paris-Roubaix, it makes sense for riders targeting Le Tour to get some practice on the cobbles. This is particularly true for Alejandro Valverde.

Tour de France 2013 - Stage 21 - 133.5KM - Versailles to Paris Champs Elysees

“I’ve never raced on the cobbles before, so with the stage being an important one in the Tour this year, we are planning on racing in Belgium a bit this year,” Valverde told VeloNews.

The Spanish rider will race at least one of the northern classics, the most likely candidate being E3 Harelbeke, to prepare for his goal of a podium finish at Le Tour.

“I know I am capable of the podium. This year’s Tour favors me, especially with the final and only time trial coming on the penultimate stage. That favors less the specialists and more riders who have good form. To beat (Chris) Froome? Well, if he is like he was this year, it will be difficult, but every Tour starts anew. We will aim for the podium and see what happens.”

Click here to read more at VeloNews.

Spanish stars test out next year’s world championship road race course

Between them, Miguel Indurain, Pedro Delgado, Oscar Freire, Abraham Olano and Igor Astarloa have seven world championship titles and six Tours de France. And yesterday that group of riders tested out next year’s world championship road race circuit in Ponferrada, Spain.

“It won’t be the toughest World’s in history, but it will wear the riders down” Indurain said after the riders tackled the 18.2km circuit in the rain. “This won’t end in a bunch sprint, rather the race may well be decided by a small group of riders.”

The men’s race will take in 14 laps of the course, for a total of 254km and 4,284m of climbing.

“It’s the kind of circuit I’d have liked in my last years as a pro,” added Freire, a three-time world champion. “It’s a pity I’m no longer racing.”

Click here to read more at Cycling News.

Movistar crowned at UCI awards

The headquarters of the Spanish Sports Council in Madrid was the venue for the trophy presentation of the 2013 UCI WorldTour overnight, its rankings dominated by Spanish cycling after claiming all individual, team and nation awards.


Movistar manager Eusebio Unzué was presented with the prize for the best team of 2013, receiving the trophy from UCI president Brian Cookson, with Movistar rider Alejandro Valverde third in the individual classification.

The overall individual classification was won by Valverde’s compatriot Joaquim Rodriguez with second place going to Tour de France winner Chris Froome.

Text adapted from a Movistar press release.

Andre Greipel headlines Lotto-Belisol Tour Down Under squad

The most decorated Santos Tour Down Under stage winner on record will return to South Australia next month keen to spend more time atop the podium.

The Santos Tour Down Under 2013 stage-1

Germany’s André Greipel has been confirmed as a race starter alongside six other riders representing Belgian team Lotto Belisol. The sprinter has won 14 Santos Tour Down Under stages, including three in this year’s edition of the event, and has taken overall honours twice.

The Lotto Belisol roster announced today includes popular Australian rider Adam Hansen, winner of stage seven at this year’s Giro d’Italia. Powerful Belgian rider Jens Debusschere – winner of the 2013 Tour de l’Eurometropole – will also be heading to the Santos Tour Down Under.

The Lotto Belisol team competing at the 2014 Santos Tour Down Under will be led by team manager Herman Frison and includes riders: André Greipel (GER), Adam Hansen (AUS), Jens Debusschere (BEL), Olivier Kaisen (BEL), Jurgen Roelandts (BEL), Marcel Sieberg (GER) and Stig Broeckx (BEL).

Text via Tour Down Under press release.

Boels-Dolmans switches to Specialized bikes for three years

A three year deal with Specialized will see Dutch women’s team Boels-Dolmans ride the American frames through to the end of 2016.

2013 Open de Suede Vargarda Team Time Trial

The team had previously been riding Issac bikes but a change in personnel for 2014 has precipitated a change of bike.

“We want to be at the top in all areas. That also goes for our team,” explained Yvo Hoppers, Marketing & Communication Manager at Boels Rental. “A top team deserves the best equipment, which is why we are very pleased with the collaboration with Specialized.”

World time trial champion Ellen van Dijk joins the squad in 2014 from Specialized-Lululemon and having ridden a Specialized frame since 2011.

“We have been sympathetic towards women’s cycling for many years and during that time we have developed products especially for these women with a functional added value,” said Eugene Fierkens, General Manager of Specialized Europe. “It is great that we can play an even more active role in international cycling with this team and our women’s products. Our ambitions and the team’s ambitions are a perfect match.”

Click here to read more at Velo Nation.

Paolo Bellino to take over from Michele Acquarone at RCS Sport

With Michele Acquarone now gone from RCS Sport following a several-month investigation into missing funds, the Giro d’Italia has a new boss, experienced Olympic sports organiser Paolo Bellino.

The 43-year-old was previously the chief operating officer for the Turin Winter Olympic organising committee and after that the general secretary of the Italian Track and Field Federation.

Bellino takes over RCS Sport on January 13 and joins new RCS Sport chairman Raimondo Zanaboni and CEO Riccardo Taranto at the helm.

Click here to read more at VeloNews.

Federation bike trail barricaded by concrete company

The Barro Group, a family business with construction interests around Melbourne has erected fencing and barricades across the Federation Trail in Hoppers Crossing after a territorial dispute about who owns the land the trail sits on.

Temporary detour signs have been put in place, to guide cyclists towards local roads, but it is unknown how long the path closure will be in place for.

“VicRoads has previously held discussions with the landowner regarding partial use of the property to accommodate the Federation Trail and these negotiations are ongoing,” Ms Liew from VicRoads said.

“At this stage, no agreement has been made, however VicRoads will continue discussing options with the landowner.”

Bicycle Network Victoria spokesman Garry Brennan said the following:

“There must be a better way of resolving this dispute than taking the law into your own hands and barricading the trail. It’s hard to believe that a major Australian company would want to stop people riding bikes and getting healthy because it is in a dispute about a property boundary. Barro should remove the barriers immediately and settle the property matter in an orderly and civil manner.”

Click here to read more at The Age.

SRAM President on hydraulic brake failure

Component maker SRAM was this week forced to recall nearly 40,000 sets of hydraulic road brakes after a fault was found. The president of the company, Stan Day, has taken to YouTube to apologise for the recall and explain the story behind it.

Click here to read more at Bike Radar.

10 things you didn’t know about Road Bike Party 2

Martyn Ashton’s Road Bike Party 2 caused a sensation last week when it was released last week, attracting nearly a million views in the first few days. Now an article on Bike Radar looks at some of the stories behind the video.


For instance, here’s a quote from Robin Kitchin, the producer of both Road Bike Party videos.

“The tennis net that Martyn side-hopped over was set at 91cm, which we believed was the official tennis net height. It’s got to be a world record right? At least for a road bike!”

Click here to read more at Bike Radar. And click on the image above to get through to the Road Bike Party 2 video.

Winding down for Christmas

This is the final edition of the Rocacorba Daily for this year and we wanted to thank you all for reading and commenting throughout the year. We’ve been pleasantly surprised by the response and we’ve enjoyed bringing it to you throughout the year. The Rocacorba Daily will be back in early 2014.

WYMTM BJ Plummer

And while our editorial coverage will be winding down for Christmas, we’re just about to launch our annual What You Missed This Morning (WYMTM) photo competition for the fifth year in a row.

This is your chance to gloat to the rest of the world about the magic of your morning ride, or for you Northern Hemisphere folk, to show how tough you are. We have some fantastic prizes lined up and we’re looking forward to seeing the photos you submit over the holidays. Stay tuned for more information.

The Rocacorba Recap

And finally this morning, here are a few things you might have missed this week:

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Today’s feature image was taken by Jered Gruber and shows the famous Stelvio climb.