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Welcome to your Daily News Digest. Here’s what’s happening today:
We may finally know who else was involved in the Operación Puerto doping ring with doctor Euramiano Fuentes. A Spanish Court has approved the release of the remaining blood bags to the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI). In Turkey, the peloton finally went climbing after three sprint stages. And Rebecca Rusch won an Emmy Award for her documentary ‘Blood Road.’ Those stories and more in today’s Daily News Digest.
Story of the day: Spanish court grants release of Puerto bags to CONI
Spanish newspaper AS is reporting that all 211 blood bags that were seized in the raid of doctor Euramiano Fuentes’ laboratory, which became known as Operación Puerto, will be handed over to the CONI. Fuentes has reportedly filed an appeal on the matter.
CONI has long pushed to be able to analyze the blood in the bags in order to determine who was involved. The Italian committee is responsible for world champion Alejandro Valverde’s two-year ban in 2010 and 2011 in connection to Operación Puerto. CONI nabbed a blood sample from Valverde at the 2008 Tour when the race had a rest day in Italy. The organisation matched the DNA in the blood sample to the DNA in one of the Puerto bags. Valverde served a two-year ban after a long legal battle.
The full evaluation of the Operación Puerto blood bags has long been considered a key step in further understanding the doping practices of the mid-2000s.
Will a complete list of athletes who worked with Fuentes help the sport to move on? Or does the release of the names bring the sport down, as cycling’s dark age will again dominate headlines? Let us know what you think in the comments.
Beauty of Cycling
Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) debuted his new rainbow kit this week, but something very important was missing. The Spaniard finally received his special edition Canyon Ultimate CF SLX and the bike’s maiden race will be none other than Il Lombardia.
Lutsenko nabs uphill sprint in Turkey
Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) demonstrated his strength with a powerful sprint to capture the uphill finish on stage four of the Tour of Turkey in Selcuk. He beat Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates), who won in Selcuk last year, and Eduard Prades (Euskadi-Murias). Lutsenko leads the general classification.
Rusch wins Emmy Award for ‘Blood Road’
Rebecca Rusch’s ‘Blood Road’ documentary about her journey cycling along the Ho Chi Minh Trail in Vietnam received the News and Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Graphic Design and Art Direction from The National Academy of Television of Arts and Sciences. Rusch recently spoke with Pink Bike about receiving the Emmy.
CyclingTips’ Caley Fretz and James Huang recently participated in Rusch’s gravel event, “Rebecca’s Private Idaho,” and filmed their adventure along the way. That video is coming soon.
Grandmother to celebrate 80th birthday with a 715km ride for charity
Come October 17, Dr. Katherine “Bibi” Jeter will turn 80 years young and set out to prove that age is merely a number with a 715km (444mi) adventure along the Natchez Trace from Nashville, Tennessee to Natchez, Mississippi. Her goal is to raise US$80,000 for globalbike, a women’s charity aiming to create sustainable women-led bicycle repair and rental businesses (using World Bicycle Relief’s Buffalo bikes) in remote Tanzania. Such an endeavour isn’t a first for Bibi. She summited Mt. Kilimanjaro for her 75th birthday.
Bibi only took to cycling at the age of 69 after treatment for breast cancer and hopes to “encourage women to be strong, think big and make a difference.” She added, “I hope to encourage young women that age is not an obstacle to a healthy life.” Bibi, we think you’re doing it right.
Mark Renshaw has extended his contract with Dimension Data. The news lends a bit of credibility to the rumor that Mark Cavendish will return to Dimension Data as well. The Manx Missile is currently on the market and has been heavily linked to Bahrain-Merida, but it’s hard to believe Cavendish will leave his faithful leadout man behind.
The final Monument of the season, Il Lombardia, sets off on October 13. Check out yesterday’s Daily News Digest to read about the battle royale that is set to take place on the roads around Lake Como.
Tweet of the day
The trash talking has started among the EF-Drapac riders regarding who gets to race which gravel events next year. The team will be doing more races outside of road racing as part of a partnership with Rapha. Click on Michael Wood’s tweet and scroll through the replies for a good laugh.
PowerTap announces new P2 dual-sided power meter pedals
PowerTap’s new P2 dual-sided power meter pedals are based on the convenient form factor of the original version, but adds some noteworthy upgrades. Riders can now supposedly get up to 80 hours of run time from the user-replaceable AAA lithium batteries — up from 60 hours on the P1 — and the new version is also said to be 34g lighter per pair, bringing the new total just under 400g. Claimed accuracy is the same as on the P1: +/-1.5%.
Although the P1 ostensibly used the Look KeO format, shoe compatibility was still occasionally an issue, especially if using non-stock cleats. According to PowerTap, that has now been solved with an updated rear claw shape. Also new is a polished silver finish on the aluminium body instead of the black painted on the original.
Other previous features carry over, such as ANT+ and Bluetooth wireless connectivity, over-the-air firmware updates, and easy transfer between different bikes. Retail price is US$800 (international pricing is TBC).
More information can be found at www.powertap.com.
In case you missed it …
Bikes of the Bunch: We take a look at a stainless steel frame from Saffron Frameworks and talk to the owner about his fascination with steel and his desire for an unfinished frame.
Today’s feature image: The famous Madonna del Ghisallo chapel of Il Lombardia.