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Welcome to your Daily News Digest. Here’s what’s happening today:
Story of the day: Lizzie Deignan’s future
What does the future hold for Lizzie Deignan? Well, the story has changed slightly.
When Deignan first announced her pregnancy and that she would miss the 2018 racing season, her Boels-Dolmans team released a statement saying it was “looking forward to her return in 2019 and 2020.” That no longer appears to be the case, at least if Boels meant that Deignan would return to its team.
A story in the Guardian on Wednesday indicates that Deignan is not receiving maternity pay from Boels — which isn’t particularly surprising given how many pro cyclist’s contracts are structured — and is on the lookout for a new team for the 2019 season.
Deignan also spoke with Cyclist this week and said that former UCI President Brian Cookson has been in touch about joining the women’s team he plans to start.
Unsurprisingly for a former world champion, Deignan’s goals are lofty: The 2019 world championships, which will pass by her parent’s house in Yorkshire, and the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Deignan is commentating at the Tour de Yorkshire this week, which is where the Guardian caught up with her. The interview touches on Deignan’s waning motivation after the Rio Olympics, which she almost missed due to a triplicate of missed anti-doping tests, and digs into the sexism Deignan still sees within the sport.
Read the more from the Guardian.
Would Chris Froome’s Giro result stand?
Will Chris Froome be allowed to keep his result from the Giro d’Italia once his salbutamol case is heard before an arbitration panel? Well, it’s complicated.
On Thursday, during the official race presentation press conference in Jerusalem, Giro director Mauro Vegni insisted he had assurances from UCI president David Lappartient that Froome would not be stripped of his Giro result even if he is suspended for elevated levels of salbutamol at last year’s Vuelta a España.
That, however, is not how things work. If Froome’s anti-doping violation is upheld, his results would be stripped from the day of the violation through the length of the sanction he is given.
Click through to read the whole story.
Kirsten Wild, Harry Tanfield win Tour de Yorkshire’s first stage
A mostly flat stage from Beverly to Doncaster finished with a sprint in the women’s Tour de Yorkshire, which was won by Wiggle High5’s Kirsten Wild ahead of Amelie Dideriksen (Boels-Dolmans) and Alice Barnes (Canyon-Sram).
The peloton was very nearly diverted off course within the final kilometre, visible in the first few seconds of this video:
The men’s race went to the local boy, Harry Tanfield (Canyon-Eisberg), who was part of an early six-man break that turned to five riders at 15km to go and held off a charging peloton to the line. The main field finished just seconds after the breakaway. Tanfield’s breakaway companions Alistair Slater (JLT Condor) and Michael Cuming (Madison Genesis) finished second and third.
MPCC reports all clear in pre-Giro Cortisol checks
Eighty riders subjected to Cortisol tests at the Giro d’Italia have been given the all clear by the anti-doping group MPCC (Movement for a Credible Cycling). The MPCC includes ten members out of the teams in the Giro. The UCI carries out such tests as part of its pre-race screening and, under the MPCC’s voluntary rules, member teams agree that the anti-doping body should be given access to the results and that any abnormal values would mean the rider concerned would not start the race.
An irregularly low cortisol level is dangerous for riders and can be indicative of the abuse of cortisone.
The MPCC member teams at the Giro are the WorldTour squads Ag2r la Mondiale, Bora-hansgrohe, Team Dimension Data, EF Education First, Groupama-FDJ, Lotto-Soudal and Team Sunweb, plus the Pro Continental Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec, Bardiani CSF and Israel Cycling Academy squads.
The Giro d’Italia sets off on Friday. Click through to read our complete guide to the race.
Tomorrow’s opening stage is a 9.7km time trial in Jerusalem.
Quotes of the day: Giro contenders before the start
“I’m not going to be able to rely on time trialling to win the Giro. The race is extremely well balanced this year. There are time trials but there are also a lot of mountains. It’s definitely not going to be one terrain that wins this Giro – it’s going to be the full package.” – Chris Froome’s usual TT advantage disappears with Tom Dumoulin in the frame.
“Taking in the things that happened last year and now knowing how to handle them in a better way makes me feel more confident.” – Dumoulin, who won last year despite an imperfect race.
“Like I’ve said before, my team is part of the MPCC. If I was in the same situation as him I would not be here. But that’s his decision, and it’s not up to me to have an opinion about it.” – Dumoulin on the presence of Froome at this year’s Giro.
“In the last few years, I’ve never felt young anyway because I’ve been riding with a certain level of responsibility. Since 2014 I’ve felt that responsibility, that stress.” – Fabio Aru on the need for a big result as he enters the prime of his career. He’s 28.
Shimano’s latest road cranksets are technological wonders: an artful balance of stiffness, durability, and low weight, coupled with the best shifting performance in the industry. However, Shimano continues to leave the gravel market in the dark with a conspicuous dearth of gearing options aside from the usual road-specific choices.
British company AbsoluteBlack steps in to fill the void, with new CNC-machined gravel-specific 46/30T and 48/32T aluminum chainring sets that fit directly to Shimano four-bolt crankarms. You’ll have to be ok with running oval rings, however, as that’s the only way to fit that few teeth around the stock bolt circle diameter. Chainrings are available in black, grey, and champagne anodized finishes, and are compatible with Dura-Ace 9000 and 9100, Ultegra 8000 and 6800, 105 5800, and Tiagra 4700 crankarms.
Speaking of gravel, custom frame builder Seven Cycles had developed new segmented drive-side chainstays that allow for wider tires and shorter chainstays than what was previously deemed possible with tubular metal construction. Unlike machined chainstay sections, which accomplish the same task, but can sacrifice stiffness, Seven’s new “2×2” chainstays feature meaty one-inch diameters from end-to-end, but with a kinked shape that reaches down toward the bottom edge of the chainring before making their way back to the rear wheel (not unlike what Open does with the U.P. and U.P.P.E.R. gravel frames).
According to Seven, a 2×2-equipped titanium gravel frame can now have chainstays as short as 420mm, while still fitting 700x32c or 650x50c tires. Similar gains are available with 2×2-equipped Seven titanium mountain bike hardtails, too.
For more information, visit sevencycles.com.
Esteban Chavez sat down for a chat ahead of his third Giro d’Italia
Since we’ve been on a bit of a shoe kick this week, another pair: