Paris-Roubaix postponed, Dan Martin will race the Giro: Daily News

Eric Vanderaerden and Sean Kelly on the Muur van Geraardsbergen at the Tour of Flanders.

by Dane Cash

photography by Cor Vos


Hello again, CyclingTips readers,

Thursday brought the news that Paris-Roubaix will not take place in April due to COVID-19, that Wout van Aert has added Brabantse Pijl and the Amstel Gold Race to his calendar, and that Dan Martin will race the 2021 Giro d’Italia.

Read on for the latest from the world of cycling.

Dane Cash
News Editor

What’s news?

Paris-Roubaix has been postponed

Organizers announced on Thursday that Paris-Roubaix will not take place in April due to COVID-19. Both the men’s and women’s races have been rescheduled from their initial date of April 11 and will now take place on two separate days, with the women’s race now set to run on October 2 and the men’s race planned for October 3.

The decision comes after weeks of uncertainty as French authorities are putting new restrictions in place amid a surge in COVID-19 cases.

“The new dates were approved by the stakeholders in men’s and women’s professional road cycling (organizers, teams and riders), following a consultation process involving organizers and other stakeholders,” read a statement from the UCI released on Thursday.

“This decision follows the decision of the competent French authorities to prohibit the holding of the 2021 edition of Paris-Roubaix – men and women – on the dates scheduled in the UCI International Road Calendar in the context of the current health situation.”

Wout van Aert adds Brabantse Pijl and the Amstel Gold Race to his calendar

Adjusting his calendar now that he won’t be racing Paris-Roubaix in April, Wout van Aert has added both Brabantse Pijl and the Amstel Gold Race to his schedule. Van Aert has never raced Brabantse Pijl, while this year’s Amstel will mark his second career appearance there.

“I’ve just started my season so it was possible to add these races to my schedule,” Van Aert said, according to Cyclingnews. “I wanted to do more with the form that I’m currently at. With Roubaix happening I would not have done the two other races.”

Dan Martin will race the 2021 Giro d’Italia

Israel Start-Up Nation announced on Thursday that Dan Martin will make his third career Giro d’Italia start later this year. The 33-year-old Irishman last raced the Giro in 2014, when he crashed out of the opening team time trial in Belfast.

“It feels like unfinished business there as, well, I guess everybody knows the story,” Martin said. “I arrived at the start in Belfast in excellent form and crashed out halfway through the TTT in stage 1. It was tough for me to watch the race that year, but I have always been a huge fan of the [Giro]. After completing it in 2010, it has just never fit with my goals or the team’s ambitions since then for me to be at the Ardennes classics and the Tour.”

Israel Start-Up Nation manager Kjell Carlstrom said in the team’s statement that he expects the Giro course to favor Martin’s skillset. The press release also noted that Martin is planning to race the Tour de France later in the season.

The MPCC ‘condemns the serious damage’ caused by latest Vini Zabù doping positive

The Movement for Credible Cycling (MPCC) released a statement on Thursday condemning “the serious damage” that Vini Zabù’s recent doping positive – the second for the team in a 12-month period – has caused “to the image of cycling.” The UCI announced earlier this week that Matteo De Bonis had been notified of an adverse analytical finding for EPO in February, less than four months after Matteo Spreafico returned positive tests for Enobosarm (ostarine) during last year’s Giro d’Italia.

Vini Zabù was briefly a member of the MPCC in 2014 but left at the end of the season.

“Whatever the amount of resources allocated to the fight against doping, some riders will still choose to cheat,” the MPCC said in its statement. “Though, this simple observation is not a thread for the credibility of cycling. However, when these events occur multiple times, year after year, within the same team, and when the institutions fail to break the cycle, it represents a terrible blow to the credibility of cycling.”

In case you missed it …

  • We took a deep dive on the challenges and thinking behind optimizing an Everesting bike.
  • For more on the Everesting front, Ronan Mc Laughlin caught up with Phil Gaimon to chat about his accomplishment.
  • Matt de Neef has the preview with everything you need to know ahead of the men’s Tour of Flanders.
  • Iain Treloar has written a requiem for the super tuck.
  • In other news from April 1, the UCI could be mulling a ban on victory celebrations.

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