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Your Wednesday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

January 11, 2017

In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Leopold König explains his path from Sky domestique to Giro d’Italia contender; Brailsford critcised UKAD chairman for speaking about investigation; Contador says he is happy to be finished with Oleg Tinkov; Velocite company owner alleges patent infringement by Pinarello; Niels Albert criticises elder van der Poel for working on world champs course construction; Athletes blast UCI for short notice on world championships; USA Cycling names cyclocross World Championships team; Christoph Strasser’s Australian record-breaking adventure starts in Perth today; British All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group seeking cyclists involved in traffic incidents; Stephen Hyde on the lead-up to nationals; Euro-cross recap video; Farmer drops pro triathletes like a boss; Fat Bike caught on electric fence.

Leopold König explains his path from Sky domestique to Giro d’Italia contender

by CyclingTips

Peter Sagan and Rafal Majka have earned most of the headlines after moving to Bora-hansgrohe, but if things go to plan for Leopold König, he could end 2017 with some of the team’s best results. The 29 year old Czech rider was previously part of the squad between 2011 and 2014, competing under the Team NetApp-Endura colours. He then moved to Team Sky and spent two years there, helping riders such as Chris Froome to success but also learning much and gaining strength. Now back working with Bora-hansgrohe chief Ralph Denk and his squad, König has big aims for 2017, including leading the team in the Giro d’Italia.

“Well, when we take the whole picture, it’s definitely simple…it is a podium in a Grand Tour,” König told CyclingTips, laying out his goals for three-week races. “I feel like I’m improving every single year…with age, I am still getting better. The last step was this year’s Vuelta where I really had a feeling that I can be up there with the best ones.

“I can be up there in the time trials, I can be up there on the climbs. So definitely the dream and the goal is to be on the podium.”

König first showed Grand Tour promise back in 2013 when he won a stage and finished ninth overall in the Vuelta a España. The following year he built on that result, putting in a very solid second half of the race to net seventh overall in the Tour de France. He could have continued that upward progression in the race by continuing to ride for himself but instead he accepted an offer to join Team Sky. The squad has the highest budget in pro cycling and likely paid well for his services; however, another factor was to learn from the team and thus continue his evolution for the future.

In 2015 König was set to back the team’s two leaders in the first two Grand Tours on the calendar. He started the Giro d’Italia riding backup for Richie Porte. However the Australian suffered bad luck and, after a crash on stage 13, withdrew before the end. König was able to play his own card and improved to a fine sixth overall in Milan. He then started the Tour de France intent on backing Chris Froome. While he was not at his best due to fatigue from the Giro, he helped the Briton to his second overall win in the race. In 2016 he missed both the Giro and the Tour, concentrating on the Vuelta a España as his sole Grand Tour of the year.

Click through to read more at CyclingTips.

Today’s feature image shows Jolien Verschueren (Telenet Fidea Lions) pictured during the Belgian national championship.

  • jeebsters

    That video does not look like a professional triathlete, looks like someone who is touring?

  • Sean Parchem

    If you want a good laugh you have to watch the last video. It is absolutely hilarious! Oh my!

    • zosim

      A friend of mine crashed into an electric fence on an MTB ride in the alps a few years back. Watching him and another friend get shocked trying to untangle it for about 15 mins was a highlight of my life, never mind my holiday. I ended up laying on the banking up to the next field gasping for air as they repeated shocked themselves. the knack, in these situations, is to find the switch which is never too far away.

      • Cynic

        Obviously city boys with no idea once they leave paved roads, or the video has been set up. It’s very obvious that the top strand is electrified, and the others won’t be if the top strand is not touching them. Simple solution. Two riders on each side of the fence raising the bike by the tyres without touching the rims.

        Most electric fences won’t have a switch and can only be turned on or off at the power source.

        • zosim

          This is the alps I’m talking about; a lot of single strand electric fences at farms to allow access to roads/trails but prevent livestock wandering. Invariably they have a shutoff near the road in case of incidents like this. Proper fences like the video; well yes ;)

    • Marcus

      People in my office are looking at me strangely as I can’t help but laugh out loud!

    • De Mac

      ‘Go on, lift that up – just be brave’ ….. that was the funniest thing I’ve seen in a while….

  • Mark Blackwell

    someone at CT really does love that picture of the commuter on a single-speed… feel like I’ve seen it a dozen times ;-)

    • DaveRides

      Speaking of stock photos assigned to go with stories in a particular category, it seems to be quite a while since we last saw the woman with the clipboard, the caravan, the sign pointing to control or the board with the list of race numbers. Time for cycling to have another doping controversy?

      The way to liven up some stories a bit would be to keep using those handful of stock photos, but swap around the topics they are assigned to :D

      • Gavin Adkins

        Still waiting on those blood bags from Operation Puerto…

  • velocite

    These days on forums and comment sites I generally use my own name but back when I first registered on CT I was thinking no, dangerous! So I used my road bike brand. Seems a bit silly now. I’ve been riding on a Velocite frame for over six years now, and various wheels. Good letter by Victor Major, and good luck to him. The Velocite web is worth a look, quite a bit of interesting material.

    • HamishM

      But shouldn’t he write to his lawyer rather than writing an open letter?

      • Cynic

        I bet that he already has legal advice. His lawyer will eventually insist that sales of the infringing bikes cease. In the meantime he is putting Pinarello on notice of his claim and will seek an account of the profits that they make. It is in his interest to let the damages mount.

  • winkybiker

    The controversy about the CX course design reminds me of the Winter Olympics in Vancouver where a local winning (Canadian) girls bob-sled team thanked (in an interview) the (Canadian) guys preparing the course for doing it in way that favoured them. No-one commented on it but I thought it to be an unusually frank admission of cheating.


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