Rafal Majka wins stage 17 of the Tour de France

Rafal Majka (Tinkoff-Saxo) has taken a second stage win at the 2014 Tour de France, winning solo on the uphill finish to Pla d’Adet on stage 17, just four days after his victory to Risoul.

TDFR 2014 - stage -17

Majka had been part of a 22-rider lead group that came together after descending the first of the day’s four climbs. On the final climb of the day Majka put in a series of attacks, breaking clear of what was then the third group on the road. He attacked his way to the chase group, before setting off in search of the lone leader, Giovanni Visconti (Movistar).

With the pair together 4.2km from the summit, Majka put in one final attack and got clear, riding away to his second solo victory in four days and a second consecutive stage for his Tinkoff-Saxo team.

Overall leader Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) also attacked on the final climb, catching everyone in the original breakaway except Majka. The Sicilian again extended his overall lead, and now sits more than five minutes clear ahead of Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and six minutes clear of Thibaut Pinot (FDJ.fr) with four stages remaining.

Stage 17: Saint-Gaudens > Saint-Lary-Soulan (Pla d'Adet) - Stage Result

Wednesday 23rd July 2014

1. pl
2. it
Movistar Team
3. it
NIBALI Vincenzo
Astana Pro Team

Click here to read the full stage report at CyclingTips.

Alberto Contador won’t race the Vuelta

After his race-ending crash at the Tour de France last week, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) had hoped to recover in time to race his home Grand Tour in August, the Vuelta a Espana.

But the Spaniard took to Twitter yesterday to confirm that his recovery from a broken leg isn’t progressing as smoothly as he would have liked, and that he won’t be ready in time for the Vuelta.

There is some confusion however. Bjarne Riis has been quoted in the media as saying that it hasn’t been decided yet if Contador will be riding the Vuelta. I guess we’ll have to wait and see…

Cervélo confirms no renewal with Garmin-Sharp/Slipstream, Cannondale deal with team expected

Following on from this week’s announcement that the Cervélo bicycle company will partner with the MTN Quebeka team next year, taking over from Trek, the company has confirmed to CyclingTips that it will end its four season association with Slipstream Sports, the management company behind the current Garmin-Sharp team.


“Cervélo and Slipstream have agreed that Cervélo will not exercise its renewal option with the team for 2015,” stated Rick Vosper, the company’s marketing director.

The non-renewal with Garmin-Sharp clears the way for another company to provide bikes to the team. This development follows on from reports in recent weeks that the team will merge with the current Cannondale setup, although neither team has yet confirmed that this is indeed the case.

However CyclingTips has been told by an industry source this week that Cannondale will indeed partner with Slipstream in 2015. The full details of that arrangement will emerge over time.

Read the full story here on CyclingTips.

Leopold Konig to leave NetApp-Endura for a ProTeam in 2015?

Leopold Konig (NetApp-Endura) is the highest-placed ProContinental rider in this year’s Tour de France, currently sitting in ninth place overall. But there are suggestions that the Czech rider is headed for the sport’s top division next season.

TDFR 2014 - stage -17

Konig’s contract ends this year and according to idnez.cz the 26-year-old is talking to four ProTour teams. “I don’t mind sometimes working as a top domestique for a Roman Kreuziger or Richie Porte”, Konig told idnez.cz “but [I] would also want to be leader in several races.”

Ralph Denk, manager of the NetApp-Endura team, which next year will become Team Bora, has admitted it will be hard to hold on to the Czech rider, saying “We will talk the night we arrive in Paris.”

Click here to read more.

Michael Albasini and Kevin Reza racism dispute a misunderstanding

In the heat of the breakaway in stage 16, allegations were made that Michael Albasini (Orica-GreenEdge) made racist remarks towards Kévin Reza (Europcar).

Albasini told Cycling Weekly, “Everyone was going full-gas, a strong headwind, it’s loud – he misunderstood me. That’s what happened. He came up and asked what I said and I said it again. I didn’t choose nice words, but that’s how it is when you are on your limit.”

Albasini said that he would not repeat his remarks towards Reza to the media.

“You know there are many languages spoken in the bunch. I don’t speak English perfectly, I speak a little bit of French, not perfectly. He doesn’t speak my languages. That can happen, a misunderstanding.”

Read the full story on Cycling Weekly.

Sri Lankan Commonwealth Games cyclists go training… on a motorway

Four cyclists from the Sri Lankan Commonwealth Games cycling team in Glasgow were stopped this morning by police after being seen training on the M74 motorway.

The four riders were assisted by police with a spokesperson saying, “Police attended the scene and advice and assistance was given.”

Read the full story on Road.cc.

Aerobic training increases pain tolerance in healthy individuals

Here’s a new study that came across our radar that suggests that aerobic training increases pain tolerance in healthy individuals. It’s often said that pro cyclists “know how to suffer” better than amateur riders, and now research appears to have shown that to be the case.

The study featured 24 participants with 12 participans assessed before and after six weeks of “structured aerobic exercise training” which consisted of cycling three times per week at 75% of maximal oxygen consumption for 30 minutes. The remaining 12 were assessed before and after six weeks of “usual physical activity.”

The researchers reportedly found “significant increases in aerobic fitness and ischemic pain tolerance” in the participants who did the aerobic exercise training.

We’ll see if we can find out more about this study but in the meantime here’s a link to some basic information.

The Dutch cyclist that maybe wasn’t supposed to be on both Malaysia Airlines flights

A couple of days ago we featured an item in the Rocacorba about a Dutch cyclist who was reportedly scheduled to fly on both doomed Malaysia Airlines flights in the past few months, but never did. It turns out that story mightn’t be entirely true, as Slate reports:

There’s no evidence that de Jonge ever bought a ticket, or even had a reservation, for either one of the flights. His miraculous survival is an artifact of the Internet’s echo chamber, where freaky news gets amplified beyond all proportion and few bother to check whether it’s actually true.

It would seem that de Jonge had thought about flying on the day of the MH17 crash, but didn’t buy a ticket, instead buying one with a different airline. And as for being scheduled to fly on MH370, that doesn’t seem completely true either.

According to RTV Oost, de Jonge flew from Kuala Lumpur to Taipei on that day; that’s roughly the same direction as MH370’s destination, Beijing, he told the reporter, “so I could have been on that plane as well.”

But there was zero reason for de Jonge to be on MH370 if his destination was Taipei; it would have been a 2,500-kilometer (1,553-mile) detour, and he would have had to buy a separate ticket for the Beijing–Taipei leg, which Malaysia Airlines doesn’t serve.

Click here to read more at Slate.

Parody twitter account creates news in the US

And in another case of the media getting sucked in, here’s a story from New York that caught our eye. When white flags replaced American flags on top of the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday, news outlets were trying to work out who had done it and why.

The parody twitter account @BicycleLobby posted a tweet “claiming” responsibility:

Several media outlets didn’t realise the tweet was from a parody account and reported the Bicycle Lobby as the culprit.

“A pair of high-flying American flags was swiped from atop the Brooklyn Bridge and replaced Tuesday with two white flags—with a pro-bicycling group taking responsibility,” reported the Daily News. Meanwhile AP wrote: “Bike path advocates have taken responsibility for the appearance of two mysterious white flags on the Brooklyn Bridge.”

The stories were subsequently changed by the Bicycle Lobby had fun poking fun at the outlets that had failed to read their twitter bio.

Click here to read more at The Daily News.

Breaking: Tour De France On Hold As Cyclists Ride Over To Creek To Check Out Bugs

The Rocacorba Recap

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

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