In this morning’s edition of the CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Caleb Ewan and Gracie Elvin secure overall victories at the Bay Crits; Taylor Phinney holding out hope of a return to Paris-Roubaix; Pardilla set to return to racing ten months after Pais Vasco horror crash; German sportspeople face prison terms of up to three years as new laws are made official; Drapac confirmed as wildcard entry for Santos Tour Down Under; Sean Kelly rides through Irish floodwaters; Strava Insights – a whole lot of data about where and how we ride; Letter from the US Editor in Chief – I know who you are; Carlos Betancur in Movistar colours; A little nudge to get started; Riding Behind the Curtain – Kranjska Gora, Slovenia.
Caleb Ewan and Gracie Elvin secure overall victories at the Bay Crits
Caleb Ewan (Orica-GreenEdge) and Gracie Elvin (Orica-AIS) have been crowned the winners of the 2016 Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic, the former winning the final stage in Williamstown en route to securing his third title, the latter successfully defending her yellow jersey with fifth place.
The final stage of the elite women’s race was won by Elvin’s teammate Lizzie Williams who helped to forge the day’s main escape before getting away solo and holding on for an impressive victory. Williams’ former breakaway companion, Julie Leth (Alé), held on for second place while Kajihara Yumi (Novotel Hotel/Japan) rode her way to third place.
In the elite men’s race, Caleb Ewan romped his way to a third Bay Crits title, winning the bunch sprint after a clinical performance from his Orica-GreenEdge team. Drapac’s Brenton Jones was second on the day — for the third time this week — while Ewan’s lead-out man Alex Edmondson held his pace to finish third.
Ewan will go into Sunday’s elite men’s road race at the Australia road nationals as one of several options for the ever-imposing Orica-GreenEdge squad. Gracie Elvin will be among the favourites for the elite women’s road race, to be held on Sunday morning.
Click through to read more at CyclingTips.
Taylor Phinney holding out hope of a return to Paris-Roubaix
Before his horrible crash at the 2014 US National Championships, Taylor Phinney had winning Paris-Roubaix as one of his biggest goals in the sport. Now, on the eve of the 2016 season, Phinney has a slightly different perspective and would just love to take part in the race.
“I still want to do those races,” Phinney said at at a BMC training camp. “I cannot say I will do this or that at Roubaix. I have a different mentality toward racing, toward what I am capable of doing.
“[Roubaix] is the only real race on my schedule right now,” Phinney said. “The only race I had on my schedule last year was worlds, and that went pretty well … That was in September, and I’ve had a fair amount of time for rehab and strengthening on my left side.
“If anything has changed, it’s the buildup to my races. I cannot overload my left leg,” he said. “I love the process of building into the season. Last year, I started training in February and didn’t race until August, and that buildup was great for me. I came into Utah and Colorado with a high level even though I was fighting with the imbalance and pain.”
Click through to read more at VeloNews.
Pardilla set to return to racing ten months after Pais Vasco horror crash
Speaking of riders that have come back from horrific injuries, Spaniard Sergio Pardilla is set to return to racing 10 months after crashing out of the Vuelta al Pais Vasco.
Pardilla went down in the same crash that took out BMC’s Peter Stetina; a crash that was caused by metal poles by the side of the road at the end of stage 1. Pardilla suffered four broken ribs, a punctured lung and fractures in his scapulae, right hand, left wrist and thumb.
While Stetina returned to racing in August, Pardilla has taken much longer to get back to health. Indeed, while he’s slated to start his season at the GP Marseillaise on January 31, the Caja Rural rider isn’t sure he’s made a full recovery.
“I’m training normally, but I’m still not certain how my left hand will feel when I’m in competition,” Pardilla told Spanish sports daily MARCA. “According to the surgeon who treated me, my hand was ripped apart in the crash.
“The mental element in my rehabilitation has been the hardest part to handle. If you’re a professional sportsman and to go from a very active life – racing, lots of journeys – to nothing is tough. It’s also hard being dependent on people for your everyday life. After nearly a year away from racing, I’m going to have to take it step by step.”
Click through to read more at Cyclingnews.
German sportspeople face prison terms of up to three years as new laws are made official
by Shane Stokes
Cyclists and other sportspeople from Germany who test positive for banned substances could face up to three years in prison after a new anti-doping law was made official.
“The law was overdue, important penal provisions now come into effect,” said German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, according to Inside The Games. “I am convinced that we can tackle doping in sport and the criminal structures behind it more effectively with this anti-doping law. It is a clear commitment of Germany for clean and fair sport.”
The country has had several riders involved in doping cases in the past decade. The best-known of those is Jan Ullrich, the 1997 Tour de France winner, who retired in 2006 after his implication in Operacion Puerto. He later admitted to doping during his career.
In response to this and subsequent doping cases, German TV channels rescinded their coverage of the Tour de France. They made a return to the event last July, but their absence shows how seriously the issue was taken.
The new legislation has now been made official after being passed by Germany’s Lower House, the Bundestag, plus the second chamber, the Bundesrat, in November, and then being formalised by President Joachim Gauck.
Click through to read more at CyclingTips.
Drapac confirmed as wildcard entry for Santos Tour Down Under
Australia’s only Pro Continental team, Drapac, will make a third-straight appearance at the Santos Tour Down Under later this month after securing a wildcard invitation.
The team took its biggest win of last season on the final day of the 2015 TDU with Wouter Wippert winning the bunch sprint in Adelaide. With Wippert now riding for the Cannondale squad (formerly Cannondale-Garmin), Brenton Jones will step up as the team’s go-to sprinter with Graeme Brown leading the team on the road in his record-breaking 14th appearance.
“We are very appreciative of the Santos Tour Down Under organisers for again offering the team the wildcard invitation to 2016 iteration of the race. The team left the race in 2015 with the best possible result, winning the final stage and we will go back again to have a similar impact,” said Drapac team manager Jonathan Breekveldt. “It is also a special occasion for Graeme as it is his 14th TDU, and we are excited to help him commemorate this feat over the course of the week.”
“This race is very special to me. It is such a great atmosphere, and the spectators are sensational, with fans lining the roadside for most of every stage,” Brown said. “I am looking forward to my 14th start at this event, and the course for this year’s race looks to set up an action packed event.”
The Drapac line-up for the 2016 Tour Down Under is as follows: Graeme Brown, William Clarke, Nathan Earle, Brenton Jones, Gavin Mannion, Lachlan Norris and Adam Phelan.
Sean Kelly rides through Irish floodwaters
Here’s an entertaining post from The Cycling Blog about Sean Kelly and more than 40 others riding near Clonmel, Ireland, a town recently hit by torrential rain and flooding.
The post features plenty of product placement but it’s worth a look if only for the pictures of “King Kelly” riding his way through super-deep waters.
Click through to read the full post at The Cycling Blog.
Strava Insights: a whole lot of data about where and how we ride
US editor Neal Rogers wrote a post yesterday about Strava’s new Insights tool and what it can tell us about cycling habits in the US. If you’re interested to see what data is available for Australian cyclists, we recommend clicking through and taking a look.
As a snapshot, more than 1.7 million rides were uploaded in Melbourne in 2015. The average ride was a touch over 30km long with about 300m of climbing and an average speed of 24km/h.
Click through to the Strava Insights webpage to explore for yourself.
Letter from the US Editor in Chief: I know who you are
And speaking of US editor Neal Rogers, here’s his first post for CyclingTips, published yesterday. In it Neal introduces himself and talks about his decades-long relationship with cycling and what he hopes he’ll be able to bring to CT. Here’s an excerpt:
I’ve worn many hats in journalism, but I’m never happier than when writing. I’m proud to bring my 20 years of experience in cycling to the most exciting and appealing media brand in the sport. If I have a mandate in this new position, it’s simply to create (and curate) relevant, interesting stories about bike riding and racing, across all disciplines, ages, or genders. It’s not complicated — a good story is a good story, and there are countless to be told in this sport that we love.
My primary objective will be to increase readership, and brand exposure, in the United States, working in tandem with our established editorial teams in Australia and Europe. I’ll be managing a team in Boulder, Colorado, steering editorial content across all facets of cycling — racing, training, travel, technology, adventure, lifestyle — you name it. We’ve already made a key hire, bringing in James Huang, from Bike Radar, as U.S. Tech Editor.
It’s safe to say we’re all pretty excited to have Neal on board. We hope you’ll join with us in welcoming him to the fold.
Click through to read the full post at CyclingTips.
Carlos Betancur in Movistar colours
Yesterday we shared photos of Richie Porte (BMC) and Michal Kwiatkowski (Sky) in their new team colours. Today, it’s Carlos Betancur who joins Movistar in 2016, hoping for a fresh start:
A little nudge to get started
Here’s how not to set your rider off during a track race. If anyone knows when and where this video was shot, let us know in the comments below!
Riding Behind the Curtain: Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
The team at Podia | Festka are doing some interesting rides in a project they’ve called Riding Behind the Curtain. The idea is to ride and explore parts of Europe that were long hidden behind the Soviet’s Iron Curtain. In the latest adventure, the gang head to Slovenia, a country which wasn’t technically behind the Iron Curtain but which still has an interesting story to tell. Here’s a video from their trip.
For a write-up and some great photos from the trip, be sure to head to the Podia website.
What You Missed
And finally this morning, here are a few things you might have missed at CyclingTips in the past few days:
- Data dump: 2015 Strava Insights reveal cycling landscape across United States
- Daily News Digest: Monday January 4