Michael Rogers wins stage 11 of the Giro d’Italia, Cadel Evans maintains overall lead

Almost one month after being cleared to compete again by the UCI, Michael Rogers raced to the first Grand Tour stage victory of his career on stage 11 of the Giro d’Italia yesterday.

Giro-d'Italia 2014 stage 11

The Australian rider attacked inside the final 20 kilometres, slipping away on the descent of the Naso di Gatto and managing to hold off a reduced peloton until the line.

Battling against a dwindling time gap Rogers hit the line 10 seconds clear of Simon Geschke (Giant-Shimano), Enrico Battaglin (Bardiani-CSF), Wilco Kelderman (Belkin Pro Cycling Team) and the rest of the 39-man chase group. Race leader Cadel Evans, whose BMC Racing Team appeared content for Rogers to take the stage, finished 13th and safeguarded his maglia rosa for another day.

The result continues the strong Australian showing in this year’s Giro.

The day was an active one which saw a stream of attacks and, eventually, a 14 man group which snapped the elastic. Those present included Tinkoff-Saxo duo Nicolas Roche and Ivan Rovny, Philip Deignan (Sky), Yonathan Monsalve (Nero Sottoli), Francesco Bongiorno (Bardiani), Perrig Quemeneur (Europcar), Björn Thurau (Europcar), Daniel Moreno (Katusha), Eduard Vorganov (Katusha), Jan Polanc (Lampre Merida), Romain Sicard (Europcar), Moreno Moser (Cannondale), Francis Mourey (FDJ) and Georg Preidler (Giant-Shimano).

Evans holds a 57 second gap over Rigoberto Uran (Omega Pharma – QuickStep) and 1:10 on Rafal Majka (Tinkoff-Saxo) in the overall classification. He consequently has a solid advantage heading into tomorrow’s 41.9 kilometre Barolo time trial and knows he could further bolster his lead.

“With rolling roads, hilly, and a real mix, it seems most adapted to a climber who has some power on the flat as well”, Evans said. “On paper it looks like the time trial course should suit my characteristics.”

Stage 11: Collecchio > Savona - Stage Result

Wednesday 21st May 2014

1. au
ROGERS Michael
2. de
Team Giant-Shimano
3. it
Bardiani - CSF

Click here to read the full story at CyclingTips.

Alexander Kristoff wins stage 1 of the Tour of Norway

Katusha’s Alexander Kristoff has won stage 1 of his home tour, the Tour of Norway, after a solid ride from his teammates in the closing stages to set up the victory.

Stage 1 of the 2.HC race was raced over 147.5km and a group of seven riders got away soon after the start. The group got out to an advantage of five minutes but thanks largely to the efforts of the Katusha riders, the break was caught inside the final 10km.

Several riders attempted to get away in the dying stages but the Katusha riders were able to close the gaps, setting things up for Kristoff in the final sprint. Sondre Holst Enger (Sparbanken) and Tom Van Asbroeck (Topsport-Vlaanderen) rounded out the podium.

Stage 1: Larvik > Larvik - Stage Result

Wednesday 21st May 2014

1. no
KRISTOFF Alexander
Team Katusha
2. no
ENGER Sondre Holst
Team Sparebanken Sør
3. be
Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise

Text adapted from a Katusha press release.

Pier Paolo De Negri wins stage 3 of the Tour of Japan

Pier Paolo De Negri (Vini Fantini) has won stage 3 of the Tour of Japan in Minamishinshu, taking control of the general classification in the process.

The 27-year-old Italian won the 148km stage — which finished with 12 laps of a hilly circuit — by two seconds ahead of Frenchman Thomas Lebas (Bridgestone Anchor) and 1:13 over his third-placed teammate Grega Bole.

De Negri won the same stage in last year’s race but slipped back down the general classification in later stages of the race.

After winning the prologue and maintaining his lead on stage 2, Australian Will Clarke (Drapac) yesterday lost more than 20 minutes on the stage and dropped well down the general classification.

The race continues today with the race’s queen stage: an infamous 11.4km road race which takes riders straight up a very steep climb on the slopes of Mt. Fuji.

Click here to read more (via Google Translate) at radsport-news.com.

Stage 3: Minamishinshu > Minamishinshu - Stage Result

Wednesday 21st May 2014

1. it
DE NEGRI Pier Paolo
Vini Fantini Nippo
2. fr
LEBAS Thomas
Bridgestone Anchor Cycling Team
3. si
BOLE Grega
Vini Fantini Nippo

Jan Ullrich allegedly in drink-driving accident

German Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich has admitted to drinking alcohol before driving home yesterday in a journey that involved a three-car accident in which two people were taken to hospital.

It is alleged that Ullrich was almost three times over the legal limit at the time of the accident and that he was speeding as well. And while Ullrich initially denied that he was drinking before the incident, he later posted the following on his website (via Google Translate):

It’s inexcusable that I have put myself under the influence of alcohol behind the wheel. That was a huge mistake that I deeply regret. I found myself with my car on the way home when it came to this traffic accident with two other cars. I was at that moment inattentive and too fast, I just wanted to hurry home.

Ullrich has reportedly had his license suspended.

Click here to read more at Jan Ullrich’s website.

Complete hamstring tear for Fabian Wegmann in Giro crash

It’s been a crash-marred Giro d’Italia so far and one of the most bizarre injuries to have come from the race is one sustained by Fabian Wegmann in stage 11 of the race.

Wegmann was involved in a crash after just 23km of yesterday’s stage and despite trying to carry on, he was simply unable to. This announcement from his team, Garmin-Sharp, might explain why:

At the Giro d’Italia today, Fabian Wegmann suffered a complete tear of the hamstrings in his left leg … He underwent imaging at a local hospital and team medical staff is currently arranging an orthopedic surgical follow up for him in Germany, close to his home.

Disc brakes to be approved for use in road races by 2016?

According to an industry insider, the professional peloton could be racing on bikes equipped with disc brakes by 2016.

Jeroen Snijders Blok, from the World Federation Sporting Goods Industry (WFSGI), is a bike industry representative who has been in meetings with the UCI Equipment Commission about the technical regulations behind road bikes. Snijders Blok told Bike Europe:

It is true that we are getting positive responses in our meetings with the UCI. But despite that it will take longer than 2015 for the UCI to approve the usage of disc brakes in professional road racing.

They want to know more on what for instance happens at 80km/h descents; what’s the heat then at carbon rims? Could this cause severe skin burns in the event of a fall? The UCI wants to have such matters clarified before any approval.

So, first this examination must be completed and the results discussed. All this means that it will take up to 2016 before professionals will use disc brakes. I do not expect that all this will take up to 2017. The usage of UCI approved disc brakes at WorldTour races will happen in 2016. At least, that’s what I expect now.

Click here to read more at Bike Europe. Click here to read a recent feature about disc brakes for road bikes here at CyclingTips.

Work begins to repair Tom Simpson Memorial atop Mont Ventoux

Work has begun to repair the Tom Simpson Memorial on the upper slopes of Mont Ventoux after the memorial stone was blown over during a violent storm late last year.

How the memorial looked before it fell over.

How the memorial looked before it fell over.

Work to repair the monument is being overseen by the mayor of Bedoin, one of the towns at the base of Mont Ventoux, and work has been delayed until now due to snow on the mountain.

The memorial was first erected in 1969 at the place where British rider Tom Simpson collapsed and due during the 1967 Tour de France.

Click here to read more at Cycling Weekly.

Behind the scenes at the Women’s Tour

Here’s a peek behind the scenes at the Women’s Tour with the Wiggle Honda team, in a video put together by team sponsor Muc Off.

Norwegian road safety ad

Here’s a cheeky little road safety ad from Norway, based on the idea that we happily share space with people in most contexts without complaint, so why can’t the same happen on the road?

The Rocacorba Recap

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

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Today’s feature image comes from stage 11 of the Giro d’Italia.