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WELCOME TO YOUR DAILY NEWS DIGEST. HERE’S WHAT’S HAPPENING TODAY:
Deceuninck-QuickStep and Trek-Segafredo took top honours on a hot day at Race Melbourne. The Critérium du Dauphiné announces its Grand Depart will take place in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. USA Cycling announces four velodromes will serve as Olympic Training Centers. Lea Davison has been named to lead Sho-Air TWENTY20’s mountain-bike squad. Enve has announced new hubs for road and gravel, lowering base wheel prices, while Hunt has released a 35mm carbon wheelset for gravel riding. And the Sufferfest has redesigned its app, for a more improved suffering experience.
Viviani, Lepisto take honours at Towards Zero Race Melbourne
It wasn’t the first rider across the line that won either the men’s or women’s event at Towards Zero Race Melbourne on Thursday. In what was more akin to a points race on the track, riders and their teams accrued points at intermediate sprints and on the finish line. There was no individual winner of the race per se, but rather a winning team (with the most points) and a sprint competition winner (individual rider with the most points).
Deceuninck-QuickStep won both prizes in the men’s race, easily dispatching Jumbo-Visma in the teams classification while Elia Viviani took out the sprint competition. Viviani took a second, fifth and third in intermediate sprints which was enough to hold off Max Walsheid by 37 points to 31.
In the women’s race Trek-Segafredo snagged both prizes, taking a comfortable win in the teams classification as Lotta Lepisto took out the sprint classification. The Finnish national champion went second, second, third and sixth in the intermediate sprints, then finished second on the finish line to take the honours.
Full results can be found here.
Critérium du Dauphiné announces Grand Depart in Cantal
For the first time, the Cantal department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of France will be hosting the Critérium du Dauphiné. Three towns will host stages — Aurillac, Jussac and Mauriac. The 71st edition of the Dauphiné will begin on Sunday, June 9 with a stage beginning in Aurillac and contested entirely on the roads of the Cantal.
The opening 142km stage will climb the Pas de Peyrol-Puy Mary, also known as the “Pyramid of the Cantal” before tackling the Côte de Saint-Cirgues-de-Malbert and the Côte de Saint-Cernin before twice ascending the Côte de la route des Crêtes in the final 50 kilometres. Given the hilly terrain, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region will be sponsoring the polka-dot jersey for the best climber.
Out of the last seven editions of the Critérium du Dauphiné, the overall winner has gone on to win the Tour de France on five occasions. The entire route of the 2019 Dauphiné will be revealed on March 25.
Lea Davison to lead Sho-Air TWENTY20’s mountain-bike squad
The Sho-Air TWENTY20 team has announced two new mountain-bike signings — two-time world championship medalist Lea Davison, and US U23 national champion Savilia Blunk. While Sho-Air TWENTY20 has housed talent in the mountain bike, gravel and adventure sectors for years, including multi-time Leadville 100 champion Larissa Connors, signing Davison and Blunk aligns with the recent announcement of the team’s strengthened partnership with Sho-Air International, which has been instrumental in supporting the national mountain-bike race calendar in the United States.
Sho-Air International’s Scott Tedro has a decade-long history of sponsoring mountain biking, including the US Cup series as well as numerous professional athletes and clubs. The US Cup events represent the highest level of pro cross-country racing in the United States and offer athletes valuable UCI points for World Cup and Olympic selection. Other sponsors include Violich Farms, Louis Garneau, Colavita Cares, Praxis, Power2Max, DT Swiss, Felt Bicycles, and SRAM.
Davison and Blunk will kick off their season in March in Puerto Rico, then head to two US Cups in Bonelli Park and Vail Lake, followed by the Sea Otter Classic. In May they’ll travel to Europe for the UCI World Cup events in Germany, Czech Republic, and Poland.
USA Cycling announces four velodromes to serve as Olympic Training Centers
USA Cycling has announced that four velodromes will be participating in the Olympic Development Program as Training Centers. The four Velodromes, located in Houston, Atlanta, Seattle, and Trexlertown, Pennsylvania will be awarded annual grants and will play a role in building towards future success in track cycling.
The goals for each Development Center are to support club and coach development, increase access to juniors, create opportunities to identify high-potential athletes, and promote participation at Track National Championships.
The creation of the Olympic Development Track Program, USA Cycling said in a statement, was made possible through the generous support of a private donor with a passion for track cycling. Additional resources will be needed to fully establish and expand the program.
Colnagos. Campagnolo. Red wine. Sponsor logos plastered all over the jersey. It doesn’t get much more Italian than the Nippo Vini Fantini Faizanè team led by Italians Moreno Moser, Marco Canola, and Ivan Santaromita. Check out their launch video.
Tweets of the day
It was a hot day at Race Melbourne, so the riders from Team UAE Emirates opted to combat the heat with giant bags of ice.
Shannon Malseed and her Tibco-SVB team were having some fun at the start of Race Melbourne at the Albert Park Formula 1 circuit on Thursday.
Enve creates new hubs for road and gravel, lowering base wheel prices
Enve now has a new line of its own aluminum-shell road hubs, allowing the company to reduce its base price of SES (rim and disc) and G-Series (disc-only) wheelsets to US$2,550 (approx 10% reduction). These Enve wheels previously offered DT Swiss 240 hubs as a base option.
The new hubs borrow a number of features from Enve’s recently overhauled carbon rim brake hubs, including paired J-bend spoke holes, and larger diameter. wider-spaced flanges – all with the goal of producing lighter, stiffer and more durable wheels. The new rim and disc-brake hubs also feature Enve’s new “Perfect Preload” system with a wave washer to create consistent bearing preload on the full stainless steel cartridge bearings. The freehub mechanism is Enve’s own 40T tool-free design, an adaption from what Mavic use.
The aluminum rim brake front and rear hubs are claimed to weight 100g and 252g respectively, with the disc brake versions at 126g and 250g. For rim brake users they’ll add 33g compared to a pair of DT Swiss 240s, but save 8g in the disc version. The hubs are also available separately at US$575 a pair.
Hunt releases a 35mm carbon wheelset for gravel riding
Hunt Bike Wheels has released a new 35mm version of its Carbon Gravel Disc X-Wide wheel set in what they’re describing as “a more burly option for hardcore gravel/drop-bar off-road riding and racing” than their existing 30mm Carbon Gravel Disc wheel set. Rim width is 30mm wide (23mm internal), ideal for 40-45mm tires (and minimum width of 28mm).
The 35mm version features the same 5-degree RapidEngage 6-pawl hub as the 30 Carbon Gravel Disc, with H_CERAMIK coating for enhanced durability. Centre-lock disc mount, 6-bolt disc adaptors are included. Combined weight on the 24/28-spoke count wheel set is said to be 1,548 grams.
Former Transcontinental winner Josh Ibbett will be using these wheels in his attempt to win the Tour Divide this year. Pricing is £899, US$1079, and AUD$1679.
Sufferfest app redesigned
The Sufferfest has announced a redesigned app that gives users additional control over their ride experience, as well as an entirely new kind of workout, for a more improved suffering experience.
The new version of the app allows users to completely customize their ride screen — they can choose to show distance, heart rate, power, cadence, recommended perceived exertion (RPE), and speed; it also allows users to turn video, music and sound effects on or off. The “minimize player” option allows users to watch an external video while still seeing the workout graph and performance targets. The Sufferfest app now allows users to individually adjust the efforts in their workouts by altering the intensity of each 4DP metric, and recovery efforts. New color-coded graphs show exactly what energy system is being targeted and which 4DP-metric a particular effort is based on.
The latest version also includes a library of new “NoVid” workouts — workouts without an associated video, soundtrack, or storyline. Instead, on-screen text will guide users through every step of the workout.
The Sufferfest Training System app is available here on Mac, Windows, and iOS.
A toolbox on wheels?
This mobile Shimano Service Center is pretty slick.
In case you missed it…
Clutched rear derailleurs have long been a fixture in the mountain bike world, given how the one-way pulley cage pivots dramatically enhance chain security and reduce noise. The road world has largely ignored the technology on two counts, though: weight and friction. The added mass relative to a non-clutched rear derailleur is indisputable, but does a clutch really add drivetrain friction, too? Tech editor James Huang set out to settle the debate once and for all.
Happy birthday to..
Fernando Escartín, the Spanish climber known for his hunched climbing position on the bike, turns 51 today. The former Kelme pro challenged Lance Armstrong at the 1999 Tour de France, winning a stage in the Pyrenees and finishing third overall. His best season came in 1997 when he won the Volta a Catalunya, finished fifth overall at the Tour, and second overall at the Vuelta a España. After retiring in 2002, Escartín became a race commentator for Spanish television.
Today’s feature image
Today’s scenic from Race Melbourne 2019 was taken by Con Chronis for Cor Vos.