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Hello again, CyclingTips readers.
We might not be getting the Giro d’Italia action that we were expecting for May right now, but there were at least a few big names going head-to-head virtually this weekend for The Challenge of Stars, put on by the RCS and taking place on the Bkool platform.
Fabio Jakobsen emerged from a fine field of sprinters and rouleurs to win one bracket, while the Giro’s reigning mountains classification winner Giulio Ciccone stormed to the title in the climber’s bracket on a virtual segment of the Stelvio. It’s something, right?
In other news, Tom Dumoulin has decided to end his individual membership in the MPCC (Movement for Credible Cycling). The Dutchman explained his reasons in an interview with Wielerflits, noting that the organization did not take a stance when organizers decided to go ahead with Paris-Nice earlier this year even amid growing coronavirus concerns, and also pointing out that the MPCC opposes the use of ketones, employed by Dumoulin’s Jumbo-Visma team.
Until next time, readers.
| Dumoulin decides to pull out of MPCC
Although his current team, Jumbo-Visma, left the MPCC in 2015, Tom Dumoulin has been a personal member of the organization—until now. The Dutchman has decided to pull out of the MPCC, citing his frustration with the way the organization, which he noted is supposed to be health-focused, did not take a stance against the running of Paris-Nice, as well as its opposition to the use of ketones.
“I really like the MPCC’s philosophy. They pursue a cleaner sport and do not consider the current doping rules strict enough, especially in the field of cortisone use,” Dumoulin said in an interview with Wielerflits.
“But I thought Paris-Nice was a farce. In my opinion, that race should not have been ridden.”
The MPCC has also come out against the use of ketones, which Jumbo-Visma employs with its riders. As Dumoulin put it, “Our team uses ketones, so it’s a bit hypocritical for me to be a member of the MPCC.”
| Jakobsen and Ciccone win at Challenge of Stars
Fabio Jakobsen and Giulio Ciccone scored the two titles on offer at this weekend’s Challenge of Stars, a virtual knockout-style event on the Bkool platform.
Jakobsen triumphed in the sprinters’ bracket. Racing on a 1.2-kilometer virtual course, he defeated Mads Pedersen and then Pascal Ackermann en route to a finals victory against Filippo Ganna.
Ciconne won the climbers’ bracket, contested on a virtual section of the Stelvio. The 25-year-old Italian topped Jakob Fuglsang in a first round that saw some big names knocked out, with Warren Barguil besting Chris Froome and Simon Geschke topping Vincenzo Nibali. Ciccone beat Geschke to face Thomas De Gendt in the final, and it was Ciccone who took the win in a sprint to the line.
| Backstedt fractures tibia, may need surgery
Up-and-comer Elynor Backstedt has suffered a spiral fracture of her tibia in a training crash.
According to her Trek-Segafredo team, doctors will determine on Monday whether Backstedt will require surgery.
| Démare suffers scaphoid fracture in training crash
Arnaud Démare will, unfortunately, also have to spend some time recovering after suffering an injury in training.
L’Equipe reports that the 2016 Milan-San Remo winner broke the scaphoid bone in his left hand in a crash while riding his mountain bike. He is expected to miss a week or two of riding outside as he recovers.
| Roglic maps out schedule
It’s hard to say whether any racing will go ahead this season, but Primoz Roglic has his program mapped out should things progress as planned.
The reigning Vuelta a España champ has told RTV Slovenija that he will go to an altitude training camp in July before racing the Tour de l’Ain and the Critérium du Dauphiné, followed by more altitude training and then (hopefully, of course) the Tour de France.
| Blue-Stages fundraiser for EFAA
The Blue-Stages cyclocross team is gearing up for a fundraising effort set to take place this coming Friday.
Riders Maxx Chance and Eric Brunner and manager Grant Holicky will each cover 200 kilometers individually in unusually difficult ways to raise money for the Emergency Family Assistance Association in Boulder, Colorado.
In case you missed it
| CT Tech Round-Up #2: New gear from FSA, MicroShift, Giant, Cushcore, and Wera
Our second tech round-up from Sarah Lukas takes a closer look at a crankset from FSA, a Microshift drivetrain, a helmet from Giant, and more.