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Hello again, CyclingTips readers.
As we work our way towards the end of the week, some big names from the American racing scene are probably glad to have been included in USA Cycling’s long team for the upcoming Tokyo Games, while one of Belgium’s biggest engines is employing an interesting sleep strategy as he works his way into racing form.
Big names like Chloé Dygert, Kate Courtney, and Tejay van Garderen (to name only a few) are among the 38 riders named to the long lists across the disciplines of road, track, and mountain bike for the American Olympic squad. While the delayed Games are a long way, those athletes will be glad to have that confirmation, while fans will now have plenty to talk about as the Olympics do gradually approach.
Meanwhile over in Belgium, world hour record holder Victor Campenaerts has apparently been sleeping in an altitude tent simulating 4,700 meters. In an interview with Sporza, Campenaerts didn’t shy away from explaining just how effective his sleep sessions have been for his red blood cell production, going so far as to say, “After those weeks in an altitude tent you are super strong. Because you have produced so many red blood cells, you should be able to feel like a rider who took EPO.”
Interesting stuff, to say the least.
Read on for more …
| Campenaerts’s altitude tent
Victor Campenaerts says he is in excellent form despite a lack of racing or even all that much training after spending time sleeping in an altitude tent. The current hour record holder told Sporza that he has spent the past three weeks sleeping at a simulated 4,700 meters of elevation, while not training as hard as normal during the day.
He was not hesitant to explain just how helpful that can be in stimulating red blood cell production, telling Sporza, “After those weeks in an altitude tent you are super strong. Because you have produced so many red blood cells, you should be able to feel like a rider who took EPO.”
Campenaerts said that he has started to decrease the altitude and work back toward normal training sessions with an eye toward riding his final training block before the season resumes with an “unprecedentedly high hematocrit.”
| USAC names Olympic long teams
USA Cycling has unveiled the initial long lists for its Olympic squads across the disciplines of road, track, and mountain bike, naming the many riders currently under consideration to represent the United States at the Tokyo Games next year (although as USA Cycling points out, “Athletes are still eligible to make the Olympic long teams until May 2021.”)
Among the many marquee riders named are Chloé Dygert (for both the Olympic track and road teams), Kate Courtney, Tejay van Garderen, Keegan Swenson, Ruth Winder, Katie Hall, Coryn Rivera, and Sepp Kuss, to name only a few. You can view the full lists over at USA Cycling’s website.
| Even more revisions to the revised calendar reportedly in the works
Although it was only recently reported that Il Lombardia would be moved to August 8 and Milan-San Remo to August 15 as part of revisions to the UCI’s revised 2020 calendar, TuttoBiciWeb reported Thursday that the dates for the Italian monuments are set to be switched with Milan-San Remo now expected for August 8 and Il Lombardia for August 15.
The UCI is expected to release an updated calendar on Friday, which will hopefully put an end to the steady stream of reported changes.
| Tough choices ahead for Bettiol
Reigning Tour of Flanders champion Alberto Bettiol will have to make some hard decisions about his calendar due to the unfortunate amount of overlap between races that he might otherwise love to ride—namely, the cobbled Classics and his home Grand Tour, the Giro d’Italia.
“The team has only scheduled the calendar in August, where I will go to Strade Bianche and Sanremo,” Bettiol told TuttoBiciWeb. “I would like to be at the Giro, but in October there are also the Classics … First of all, however, we start riding again: That’s what counts.”
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Today’s featured image of Victor Campenaerts in time trial mode at the Giro d’Italia comes from Kristof Ramon.