Carapaz will miss the Vuelta, Degenkolb to Lotto-Soudal: Daily News Digest

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Welcome to your Daily News Digest. Here’s what’s happening today:

Richard Carapaz will miss the upcoming Vuelta a España due to injuries sustained in a crash, John Degenkolb signs a two-year deal with Lotto-Soudal, Lorena Wiebes wins the opening stage of the Ladies Tour of Norway. Those stories and more in today’s Daily News Digest.

Story of the Day: Carapaz will miss the Vuelta

Reigning Giro d’Italia champion Richard Carapaz (Movistar) will miss the Vuelta a España due to injuries he sustained in a crash at the Profronde van Etten-Leur criterium on Sunday.

The 26-year-old Ecuadorian was set to start as one of Movistar’s three featured riders for the Vuelta, along with former winners Alejandro Valverde and Nairo Quintana, but his fall at the post-Tour criterium in the Netherlands left him with “a significant contusion in his right shoulder, as well as several bruises,” according to a team press release.

“In spite of treatment received all over the week and the lack of fractures, the injury’s evolution has advised for further precautions to allow it healing completely, which rules out against his appearance in the race,” read Movistar’s statement.

Richard Carapaz at the Giro d’Italia. Photo: LB/RB/Cor Vos © 2019

A strong climber expected to thrive on a climber-friendly parcours, Carapaz was among the bookies’ top favorites to win the Vuelta. His absence leaves Nairo Quintana as the likely top GC option for Movistar with Valverde as a second card to play and a dangerous stage-hunter.

José Joaquín Rojas will take Carapaz’s spot in Movistar’s roster for the Spanish squad’s home Grand Tour.

Socially Speaking

If you’ve been feeling robbed of your opportunity to watch Chris Froome accepting his red jersey as the champion of the 2011 Vuelta a España, you can see it now, albeit in less spectacular fashion than he would have liked. It was Juan José Cobo who stood on the podium in Madrid eight years ago, but now that the UCI has stripped the Spaniard of his title, Froome gets the win while he recovers from his serious crash in June.

Speaking of Vuelta champions, Alberto Contador is excited for the upcoming race, and has posted a few photos from his dramatic 2012 Vuelta victory. Contador stunned the Vuelta that year, grabbing the race lead from Joaquím Rodríguez with a long-range attack on stage 17. It’s hard to blame Contador for looking back with fond memories of it all.

It’s also hard to blame Rodríguez for his excellent reply to Contador’s post, which you can see a little ways down in the comments: “No me acuerdo…..” he writes – “I don’t remember.”

Race Radio

Degenkolb signs with Lotto-Soudal

John Degenkolb will join Lotto-Soudal in 2020 after three years with Trek-Segafredo.

The 30-year-old German has signed a two-year contract with the Belgian WorldTour outfit.

“The talks with Lotto Soudal have revealed that there are many similarities between the team’s goals and mine. It makes sense that a Belgian team with a long history in cycling wants to excel during the Classics,” said Degenkolb. “In addition, I’m not slow at the finish, especially after a tough race. Of course, I also look forward to working with Caleb Ewan, who will undoubtedly be our number-one sprinter for his specific goals. But with my experience, I can provide added value for him and for Lotto Soudal.”

John Degenkolb at the Tour of Flanders. Photo: ©kramon

Degenkolb’s career palmares includes wins at Milano-Sanremo and Paris-Roubaix, both coming in 2015 when he was a member of the Giant-Alpecin squad. The following winter, he was one of several Giant riders badly injured when hit by a car during a training ride. Degenkolb spent months recovering, and longer working his way back to racing form.

He joined Trek-Segafredo for 2017, and during his three-year stint with the team collected a handful of strong results, including an emotional win on stage 9 of the 2018 Tour de France, which finished in Roubaix.

At Lotto-Soudal, he will join a Classics squad that has been bolstered by the signing of Philippe Gilbert, which the team also announced this week.

Wiebes wins Ladies Tour of Norway opener

Lorena Wiebes (Parkhotel Valkenburg) continued her impressive 2019 season with a WorldTour win on stage 1 of the Ladies Tour of Norway.

Lorena Wiebes wins stage 1 of the Ladies Tour of Norway. Photo: Anton Vos/Cor Vos © 2019

The rainy 128-kilometer opener from Asgardstrand to Horten came down to a sprint finish, and the 20-year-old Dutchwoman proved fastest to the line, topping Australia’s Chloe Hosking (Alé Cipollini) and Denmark’s Amalie Dideriksen (Boels-Dolmans).

Wiebes will take the race lead into Friday’s stage 2, 133.6 kilometers from Mysen to Askim.

Madsen wins Denmark TT, Würtz Schmidt takes the race lead

Martin Toft Madsen (BHS-Almeborg-Bornholm) won Thursday’s stage 2 of the Tour of Denmark, a flat, 17-kilometer time trial.

Madsen, who has won multiple Danish TT titles in his career, topped Rasmus Quaade of Riwal Readynez and Mads Würtz Schmidt, normally of Katusha-Alpecin but riding for the Danish national team this week, in Grindsted. Würtz Schmidt now leads the general classification with Niklas Larsen (ColoQuick) in second on the same time.

Watch stage 1 of the Colorado Classic

You can watch the Colorado Classic online via the official livestream. Stage 1 starts and finishes in Steamboat Springs. Catch the action here:

In case you missed it …

Feature Image: Richard Carapaz at the Giro d’Italia. Photo: Gruber Images

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