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Welcome to your Daily News Digest. Here’s what’s happening today:
Daryl Impey is the first man to win back-to-back Tour Down Under titles, Richie Porte reigns supreme on Willunga, Vos and Van Aert win at the CX World Cup in France and Mat Hayman says goodbye to pro cycling. Those stories and more in today’s Daily News Digest.
Story of the Day: Daryl Impey’s Tour Down Under double
There were a lot of similarities between this year’s Tour Down Under and last. Elia Viviani winning a stage, Peter Sagan winning a stage, Richie Porte winning on Willunga Hill (for the sixth time!), Daryl Impey winning the overall with a podium finish on Willunga … But there was also plenty to differentiate the 2019 edition from 2018. Not least some history and one hell of a swashbuckling ride that won’t be reflected in the final GC.
Impey’s win makes him the first male rider in the TDU’s 21-year-history to win back-to-back titles (Amanda Spratt has won the women’s TDU three years in a row). Until the final day it didn’t look like it was going to happen — the race was being led by Paddy Bevin (CCC) who had taken a bunch of bonus time and eked out a seemingly race-winning advantage over Impey and others. But as we now know, Bevin crashed on the penultimate day and slipped out of contention on the final stage.
As much as the story of the 2019 TDU was that of Impey’s record-breaking win — and a well-deserved win at that — it’s also one of Paddy Bevin’s impressive rise then heartbreaking fall. You can read more about that story at CyclingTips here.
Beauty of Cycling
While Daryl Impey was the one winning the Tour Down Under, it was a significant race for his Mitchelton-Scott teammate Mat Hayman as well. The 2019 TDU was Hayman’s final race as a professional and being part of the winning team, you’d have to say he ended his career on a high.
Hayman scored just three professional victories in a career of just over 19 years. Of course, one of those three was the 2016 Paris-Roubaix, a win that won’t soon be forgotten by those who saw it. Here’s a recap in case you missed it:
And here’s Hayman reflecting on his career and final race at the top of Willunga Hill on Sunday. Thanks for all the memories, Mat, and all the best for what comes next!
— MathewHayman (@Mathew_Hayman) January 20, 2019
Marianne Vos, Wout Van Aert win at CX World Cup
The penultimate round of the 2018-19 Cyclocross World Cup was held in Pontchâteau, France over the weekend, with some familiar names making it to the top step of the podium.
The elite men’s race came down to a three-way last-lap battle with world champion Wout van Aert taking victory ahead of Toon Aerts and Michael Vanthourenhout. Van Aert now takes the World Cup leader’s jersey with one race remaining.
In the elite women’s race, Marianne Vos took a solo victory ahead of Denise Betsema and Maud Kaptheijns, locking up the World Cup title with one race still to come.
That race will be the GP Adrie van der Poel, due to be held in Hoogerheide, The Netherlands next weekend.
Follow the link to read more about the Pontchâteau CX World Cup.
Brodie Chapman wins Gravel and Tar La Femme
Winner of the inaugural Women’s Herald Sun Tour, Brodie Chapman, has signalled her impressive form ahead of her title defence later this month, winning the inaugural Gravel and Tar La Femme over in New Zealand. Riding for Oceania Women’s Cycling, Chapman went clear on the third of five gravel sectors with Jenne Merrick just behind. The pair joined forces before Chapman won the two-up sprint. Rylee McMullen sprinted to third place more than eight minutes behind.
Our report on the 2019 inaugural Gravel and Tar La Femme. Chapeau Brodie Chapman, Jenna Merrick and Rylee McMullen, your top three at the end of the day.
https://t.co/NjZ0a4kWOD @MGHWCycling #kiwicycling #roadcycling #gravelracing pic.twitter.com/oegggVMdYm
— Road Cycling (@roadcycling) January 19, 2019
In the men’s race, Kiwi Luke Mudgway (EvoPro) took the win ahead of Ryan Christensen (New Zealand) and Aussie Cyrus Monk (EvoPro) .
Remco Evenepoel set to start pro career
The Vuelta a San Juan is set to get underway in Argentina later this week, with a startlist full of stars. Peter Sagan, Mark Cavendish, Nairo Quintana and Julian Alaphilippe will all be there, but all eyes will likely be on Belgian phenom Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep) when the seven-stage UCI 2.1 event kicks off.
Evenepoel is just 18 (he turns 19 this week) and is the youngest-ever rider to be signed to a WorldTour team. He’s skipped the U23 ranks and gone straight from the juniors where he dominated seemingly every race he started, not least the 2018 World Championships road race and time trial, plus the same at the European championships. His results sheet from last year makes for impressive reading.
“I’m excited about my debut in San Juan,” Evenepoel said. “It will be my first race to start my career as a professional and also I have never been to Argentina.”
Will Evenepoel be able to handle himself at the higher level of racing? Will he be at home in the professional peloton? We don’t have long to find out.
Santos extends sponsorship of TDU
Energy company Santos will remain as title sponsor of the men’s and women’s Tour Down Under until 2022 after extending its commitment for another three years.
“Santos’ partnership has been critical in shaping the continued growth and success of the event, which injected more than $63.7 million into the state’s economy last year and showcases South Australia to a global audience in the tens of millions,” said South Australian Tourism Minister David Ridgway.
“Santos should be commended for its new three-year investment which also strives to ensure continual growth of the Women’s Tour as we work towards our ultimate goal of UCI WorldTour status.”
Santos has sponsored the event since 2010.
CeramicSpeed releases OSPW X for SRAM Force 1 and Rival 1
Riders on SRAM’s Force 1 and Rival 1 single-chainring transmissions that are interested in reducing their drivetrain friction will be happy to hear that CeramicSpeed has unveiled an Oversized Pulley Wheel derailleur cage retrofit that promises a “30-40%” reduction. Part of that reduction comes from the oversized 14-tooth upper and 18-tooth lower pulleys (both spinning on hybrid ceramic bearing cartridges), but the rest comes from reduced spring tension in the fiber-reinforced composite pulley cage pivot itself. The clutch mechanism carries through unchanged.
Retail price is a heady US$519-619 (depending on bearings), but buyers can at least take a bit of solace in the generous warranty (up to six years), and CeramicSpeed’s claim that the pulleys will last 3-5 times longer than the stock units.
More information can be found at CeramicSpeed.com.
Happy Birthday to …
Grand Tour stage winner Pablo Lastras (43). Lastras rode as a professional from 1998 to 2015, staying with the Banesto – Caisse d’Epargne – Movistar setup for the entire time. The Spaniard won a stage at both the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia, plus three stages at the Vuelta a España.
Happy birthday too to four-time New Zealand national road champion Rushlee Buchanan (31).
In case you missed it …
Double drama at the Tour Down Under: Bevin crashes, Ewan relegated
A look at one of the most dramatic days in Tour Down Under history. A day the overall leader (and his title hopes) came crashing down, and the stage winner was relegated for an “irregular sprint”.
Click through for the full article at CyclingTips.
Feature Image: Daryl Impey after winning his second Tour Down Under. Image courtesy of Cor Vos.