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Hello again, CyclingTips readers!
The weekend is nearly here, but if you need something to give just that little extra push, there are plenty of things to be excited about as the road racing season returns. Australian nationals are already underway, and the WorldTour peloton will soon take on the Santos Tour Down Under.
That means it’s high time for teams to announce their rosters for the first top-division event of the year, which is just what Ineos and Trek-Segafredo have done. Rohan Dennis will have some big engines around him as he leads his new Ineos squad on home roads, while Trek fans will like the team’s chances to shine in both the men’s and women’s races.
A little farther down the road – but really not that far off now – are the Classics, where apparently Mark Cavendish is reportedly mulling making a few starts on the pavé.
Lots of racing action to look forward to.
Until next time, readers!
| Dennis to lead Ineos at Tour Down Under
Ineos has announced its lineup for the Tour Down Under, with several big engines set to make the start when stage 1 of the men’s race gets underway in Tanunda on January 21.
Although Dennis’s participation is no surprise, the team went a step farther in making his role and big ambitions clear, with sports director Brett Lancaster saying, “Rohan has won the race before and knows what it takes to win. He will be our leader in his hometown.” Also in attendance for Ineos will be Pavel Sivakov, Dylan van Baarle, Chris Lawless, Owain Doull, Luke Rowe, and Ian Stannard.
| Trek-Segafredo bringing two strong teams to Australia
Both the men’s and women’s Tour Down Under rosters that Trek-Segafredo unveiled on Thursday are built to contend in the Australian stage race.
Ruth Winder and Tayler Wiles are candidates for the GC in the women’s race, with Lotta Henttala, Anna Plichta, Abi Van Twisk, and Trixi Worrack also on the women’s squad.
On the men’s side, Richie Porte will hunt his second overall title – and seventh Willunga Hill stage win – accompanied by a team that also includes world road champ Mads Pedersen. Kenny Elissonde, Kiel Reijnen, Koen de Kort, Michel Ries, and Juan Pedro López round out the team.
| Cavendish’s calendar
Mark Cavendish will get his season underway with a busy slate of racing in the Middle East before targeting wins on Italian roads and possibly even a few cobbled Classics.
Cyclingnews reports that the Manx sprinter will race the Tour of Saudi Arabia, the Tour of Oman, and the UAE Tour before returning to Europe, where he expects to race Tirreno-Adriatico and Milano-Sanremo (a race he won in 2009). Then, he may take part in some racing on the cobbles in Belgium, although exactly what event he will start remains unknown.
| Carapaz and Bernal to start seasons at Tour Colombia
2019 Giro d’Italia winner Richard Carapaz and 2019 Tour de France winner Egan Bernal will start their seasons together headlining the Ineos roster at next month’s Tour Colombia.
Iván Sosa, Brandon Rivera, Sebastián Henao, and Jhonathan Narváez make up the rest of the team set to take on the six-day stage race.
In case you missed it
| In Sarah Gigante’s rise, we’re witnessing something very special
As Matt de Neef writes, new Australian time trial champ Sarah Gigante looks to be one of the most promising young riders in the women’s peloton.
| Hunt releases new Carbon Aerodynamicist rim brake wheels
Hunt has unveiled new rim brake wheels along with some helpful data on aerodynamic testing. As Dave Rome points out, the company made the interesting decision to acknowledge that another wheel is slightly faster.
Today’s featured image was submitted into the Mark Gunter Photo competition by Nathan Godwin of the beautiful and now devastated Kangaroo Island from the bushfires: “The coastline along Kangaroo Island is incredible. One minute you are riding on a road next to scrub, climbing small hills with lakes on either side. Then you reach the coast and there is clear blue water and incredible red dirt roads.”
The shortlists have been chosen by the judges and you can see their selections here. Winners of the competition will be announced next wee!