Your Saturday Daily News Digest

by Shane Stokes

July 29, 2017

In today’s Daily News Digest: Commissaire who disqualified Sagan from Tour calls for video judges in cycling; Cycling Australia introduces new transgender athlete policy; Lotto-Soudal chasing success after winless Tour de France; Bookwalter chasing home-soil success in Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah; Jungels back in action at Tour de Pologne; Movistar extends with Arcas, Oliveira and Pedrero; Four years on, McQuaid weighs in on pro cycling; Following the 2017 Transcontinental ultra-endurance race; Mark Cavendish Launches The Amstel Cold Tub Pub

Following the 2017 Transcontinental ultra-endurance race

by Simone Giuliani

It’s time for the riders of the Transcontinental ultra-endurance race to head off on the famed cobbles of the Muur van Geraardsbergen in Belgium and work their way across Europe till they reach the gigantic rocks and monasteries of Meteora in Greece. It’s the biggest field yet, with close to 300 riders on the start list for the first running of the Transcontinental since its founder and organiser Mike Hall died.

The race is on. Follow the rider's dots at #TCRno5 #cyclinginflanders photo credit @camillejmcmillan

A post shared by The Transcontinental (@thetranscontinental) on

The race, which is approximately 4,000 kilometres long and started 10pm Friday night, is certain to deliver a first-time winner this year as former victors Kristof Allegaert and Josh Ibbett are not in the mix. Of the names to look out for the biggest standout is James Hayden from the United Kingdom, who managed to come fourth last year even after having to sit tight at checkpoint 1 for over 30 hours to recover from a chest infection.

Then there is the group of starters who have proved their competitiveness by finishing in the top ten in the past couple of editions of the race – Nelson Trees, Geoffroy Dussault, Vincent Muhlethaler, Michael Wacker, Robert Carlier and Gareth Baines. We also shouldn’t forget Bjorn Lenhard who was further down the results list in the 2016 Transcontinental but last month won the 2,500 kilometre TransAtlanticWay. Additionally we will get to find out how Ian To fares with the longer distances, as he has a strong record in shorter events, including two wins at the Croation Hard Cro ultra-endurance race.

The women to watch in this fifth running of the Transcontinental include Emily Chappell, who was last year’s first female finisher and Paula Regener, who took third overall in the TransAtlanticWay in 2016. It’ll also be interesting to see how experienced bike packer Melissa Pritchard fares. She’s used to doing long distances on the bike, having ridden around the world, but is a rookie racer.

You can find out how all the competitors are faring by following the rider’s tracking dots as they move between the checkpoints on their way to Greece. The tracking map can be found here, plus there is also likely to be plenty more information and pictures flowing in on the race Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter accounts plus YouTube channel. The hashtag for this fifth edition of the Transcontinental is #TCRNo5.

Of course, you’ll also be able to find more coverage on CyclingTips and in the Daily News Digest.