Grand Depart of 2019 Tour de France confirmed for Brussels; Carpenter soloes to victory in Winston-Salem Classic; Stephens wins women’s Winston-Salem Classic; Cannondale celebrates Giro d’Italia highlights; Van der Poel highlights glittering talent with road and MTB success; Summerhill given summons after firing gun on training ride; Trentin hits a bear while training in California; Video: Peter Sagan Cycling Academy at the Muro di Ca del Poggio; Video: Cycling the Silk Route – Part 5; Video: Toronto announces $50 million dollars investment in cycling infrastructure
Your Wednesday Daily News Digest
NEWS & RACING BROUGHT TO YOU BY CHAPTER2 BIKES
Tour de France organisers ASO have unveiled plans to return to Brussels for the start of the 2019 event, thus marking the 50th anniversary of Eddy Merckx’s first Tour de France win.
Merckx won the Tour de France on his first attempt, dominating the race with a staggering 17 minute 54 second advantage over runner-up Roger Pingeon. Commenting on the news, the 71 year old Belgian said, “I’m very emotional. I hope I’ll still be alive.”
ASO noted that the first stage held outside French borders was to Brussels on the second day of the 1947 Tour. “Since then, the Belgian capital has welcomed the Grand Boucle ten times and ten stage finishes or half-stages have taken place there,” it said.
Race director Christian Prudhomme said that honouring Merckx was important. “It’s the least we could do,” he stated. “Eddy Merckx is an exceptional champion and a person of exceptional humility.”
The Belgian capital hosted the start of the Tour in 1958. This year’s race will begin in Düsseldorf, Germany. London was originally expected to host the race but in September 2015 its application was withdrawn. At the time the BBC stated that management at Transport For London and its parent body the Greater London Authority made the decision.
Today’s feature image shows world MTB XC champion Nino Schurter and Mathieu Van der Poel congratulate each other after Sunday’s World Cup race in Albstadt, Germany. Van der Poel’s runner-up slot there behind Schurter plus his road race victory last week on stage two of the Baloise Belgium Tour mark him out as one of the most talented and versatile young riders in the sport. Photo by Kuestenbrueck.