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Hello CyclingTips readers,
We may not be enjoying Tour de France racing this Bastille Day like we’re used to, but there’s still plenty of news from the cycling world to cover. In particular, recent headlines featured more than one news item of interest to those who enjoy a bit of unpaved action in their road racing.
For starters, Deceuninck-Quick-Step announced that Julian Alaphilippe will return to racing at Strade Bianche, which he of course won in impressive fashion last year. After so many months without actual, outdoor bike racing, we’re looking forward to what is always an entertaining event.
Speaking of Strade Bianche winners, Annemiek van Vleuten has offered an update on her status as she tries to decide on her team for next season with her Mitchelton-Scott contract up at the end of the year. The world road champ says she is in talks with her current team, but that she is also weighing other options as well.
And then there’s Patrick Lefevere, who took a moment earlier this week to express his distaste for the use of gravel in road races (not for the first time) ahead of a Tour that is set to feature a (very) select few sections of unpaved roads. In his column for Het Nieuwsblad, the Deceuninck-Quick-Step team manager opined that the ASO’s use of “goat trails” is “the opposite of spectacular.”
Read on for more …
| Van Vleuten still undecided on 2021 team
As NOS reports, world road champ Annemiek van Vleuten is talking to multiple teams as her current contract with Mitchelton-Scott is set to conclude at the end of the season.
The possibility of continuing with Mitchelton seems to still be on the table, but van Vleuten said that she has options.
“I am currently talking to other teams, but of course also to my current team,” van Vleuten said. “An important consideration is: Which team will help me best to go for that medal in the Olympics? And which team will keep me happy as a rider? Because I perform best when I am really enjoying myself.”
| Alaphilippe will return to racing at Strade Bianche
Deceuninck-Quick-Step has unveiled the revised 2020 program of Julian Alaphilippe, with the Frenchman set to return to racing at Strade Bianche, where he holds the honor of being the defending champion.
Alaphilippe’s calendar will then take him to Milan-San Remo (where he is also the defending champ), the Critérium du Dauphiné, and French nationals before the Tour de France.
| Lefevere: Gravel sections in road races ‘the opposite of spectacular’
In other Deceuninck-Quick-Step news, team manager Patrick Lefevere has expressed his distaste for gravel in road races before and he has done so again as another Tour de France that will feature at least a handful of unpaved kilometers looms.
Lefevere doesn’t see the appeal.
“Honestly, I don’t understand the ASO’s fascination with goat trails,” Lefevere said in his Het Nieuwbslad column.
“What value does it add? It’s the opposite of spectacular.”
| More updates on Tour safety measures
Speaking of the Tour, over the past few weeks, organizers have gradually provided info on the safety measures that will be implemented at the upcoming race, and race director Christian Prudhomme has provided another update on the ways that access to the peloton will be restricted.
As L’Equipe reports, the public and the media will be prohibited from entering the team bus area, the publicity caravan will be reduced by 40 percent, and organizers could limit fan access to mountain passes.
| The Brain Fly-Through with Kate Courtney
USA Cycling and the US governing bodies of several other sports have teamed up with TeachAids to create the CrashCourse Multi-Sport Concussion Education Series, which will be distributed to thousands of schools across the country and used by various sporting organizations.
Kate Courtney narrates the first segment of the series, the “Brain Fly-Through,” available both in standard video as well as virtual reality.
| Castelli partners with Reggie Miller for ‘Say Their Names’ jersey
Castelli has collaborated with Reggie Miller and Team Boombaby to create the “Say Their Names” jersey.
All proceeds from sales of the jersey will go toward the Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit “committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, to challenging racial and economic injustice, and to protect basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.”
For more, head over to Castelli’s website.
| Rapha launches new Women’s 100 collection
Ahead of the eighth edition of the Women’s 100, a global ride challenge for women to ride 100 kilometers that gets underway on September 6, Rapha has launched a new Women’s 100 collection that includes jerseys, bibs, socks, and a cap.
For more, head over to Rapha’s website.
| Yeti Cycles will no longer use the word ‘tribe’ in marketing
As Bicycle Retailer reports, Yeti Cycles will no longer be using the word “tribe” in its marketing. The Colorado-based company has long used the word in reference to its community of riders and its annual festival.
“After discussion with members of the indigenous community, studying accurate representations of our shared history, and reflecting on our values as a company, Yeti Cycles has decided we will no longer use the term ‘Tribe’ in our marketing,” Yeti co-owners Chris Conroy and Steve Hoogendoorn said in a statement.
“The community we have built will move forward and thrive. Yeti Gatherings will continue to be our most valued events of the year. We have walked away from a word, but the soul of our community remains intact. We ask you all to join us in embracing this change.”
In case you missed it
| Is this where the Tour will be won? Shoddy inspects the TDF’s highest bike path
In his latest video, Dave Everett takes his newly built up Ritchey Logic up the Col de la Loze.
| From broken kneecap to breakout star
As Matt de Neef writes, April Tacey has overcome some challenges en route to her impressive virtual results this season.
| How cycling helped Lisa Congdon’s artistic process
As Sarah Lukas writes, Velocio and Lisa Congdon have collaborated for the new Signature SE jersey and Harvest Ultralight jersey design.
Today’s featured image of Chris Froome celebrating Bastille Day with a jog up Mont Ventoux comes from Cor Vos.