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Wiggins dreams of delivering Thomas to Flanders victory
April 04, 2015 (04:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins was in his element as he greeted the press ahead of this Sunday's Tour of Flanders. A day after his first victory in the rainbow stripes of world time trial champion at De Panne, Wiggins held court in Team Sky's Kortrijk based hotel.Wiggins is used to being the star of the show, while his chance to shine is a little over a week away, this weekend it is all about his teammate Geraint Thomas. Wiggins will be working for Thomas, who has put himself forward as the man to beat this Sunday with his recent success. It is a chance to repay Thomas and he has already been dreaming up scenarios of how the race will play out " all of which end in Team Sky taking the victory. "Dont think I haven't had an image of how that's going to look either. I see myself going up the Kwaremont one last time, doing damage, peeling off and watching Geraint attack," Wiggins laughs, knowing all too well that best laid plans aft go awry on the cobbles. "That's an ideal scenario, and soloing to the finish. Obviously life's not like that and I'm sure it will be a lot messier than that. If Geraint Thomas won on Sunday then, Jesus Christ, I don't think we'd be there on Sunday.ADVERTISEMENT "We've won those bottles already," he indicates to the three magnums of champagne that the team have collected from E3 Harelbeke, Gent-Wevelgem and Wiggins' latest victory at the Three Days of De Panne. "We'd probably open them all up on Sunday night. I think we'd be sending the B team to Roubaix. What a thing that would be." Wiggins will bow out of Team Sky following next weekend's Roubaix, as he switches to the Continental team that bears his name and focusses his efforts on the track for the final 18 months of his professional career. The 34-year-old joined Team Sky in its founding year and has seen it through some of its biggest achievements and toughest times. While they soon cracked the Grand Tours, it is only this year that the Classics team has reaped the success they desired. After his time trial victory at De Panne, Wiggins noted that this weekend was Britain's first opportunity to take top honours since Tom Simpson's victory in 1961. The 34-year-old's win at the 2012 Tour de France marked a revival in the passion for the sport in the country and three years down the line he's happy that the passion has spread to the cobbles. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Team Sky unveil Pinarello DOGMA K8-S for the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix
April 03, 2015 (03:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Team Sky, in conjunction with Jaguar, have unveiled the new Pinarello DOGMA K8-S for the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. The bike is set to feature on the cobbles of this years Tour de France, but Bradley Wiggins, Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe will be among the first Team Sky riders to race the bike this weekend in Flanders. The new bike, with a claimed raw frame weight of 900g, has a bespoke mechanical rear suspension system called the DSS 1.0 " Dogma Suspension System " that features a miniature rear shock and flexible flat carbon chainstays that Pinarello believes creates a revolutionary pivot point for the perfect riding comfort over the cobbles of northern Belgium and France." Cyclingnews joined Team Sky riders Thomas, Rowe and Salvatore Puccio as they rode the final 100 kilometres of the Tour of Flanders route on Thursday as part of their final preparations ahead of Sundays Monument, and the feedback from the riders was expectedly positive. I'm in the best shape I've been in, and the team are in the best shape they've been in, and we've got a lovely new bike, Thomas said.ADVERTISEMENT I rode [the bike] in February as well and it feels nice. The faster you go you can tell the difference even more. The back end definitely feels a lot comfier - not so rigid. The new rear suspension unit has been co-engineered by Pinarello, the teams bike supplier since their WorldTour inception in 2010, and Jaguar, who initially joined the team as their vehicle supplier that same year. The starting point for Pinarellos development started with the K8 road bike with the main triangle acting as the foundation of the project. As is typical for bikes purposely built for the cobbled classics, the front end is built with a slacker head tube angle, while the fork rake has increased by 4mm. In total, this should make for better shock absorption up front along with increased stability given the longer wheelbase. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins closes circle with De Panne time trial win
April 03, 2015 (03:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
The final time trial of the Three Days of De Panne had the feel of a valedictory win for Bradley Wiggins, though the Briton will of course hope to add Paris-Roubaix to his palmars before he departs Team Sky in 10 days time for his new, eponymous Continental outfit. Wiggins first participated in De Panne in 2002, as a neo-professional with La Franaise des Jeux, and finished the concluding time trial in 12th place " incidentally, one spot behind another Sky man very much in the news in recent weeks, current directeur sportif Servais Knaven. Victory on that same windswept course in 2009 was an early flourish in the season that proved to be the turning point of Wiggins entire career, and there was a sense of closing the circle when he claimed his first win in the rainbow jersey of world time trial champion on Thursday afternoon.ADVERTISEMENT It was one of my first time trials as a professional back in 2002 and its my last one on this level, so its nice to win. It was certainly on my mind all week and especially today, I really wanted to win this one, Wiggins said afterwards. I always like this time trial especially when the weather picks up. Wiggins showed no lingering effects of Thursdays morning leg, quickly finding his rhythm on rolling down the start ramp, and it was immediately apparent that he would not be denied, even with 25 riders still to follow him. By close of business, only Stefan Kng (BMC) came within 10 seconds of Wiggins time on the 14.2km course, and the Briton had hauled himself up to third place overall, 42 seconds down on Alexander Kristoff (Katusha), for good measure. It felt horrible out there but I think it was the same for everyone, Wiggins said. When you race this morning really early it never feels like its flowing and fresh and everyone is trying really hard. But I knew there was an opportunity to jump onto the podium. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Bradley Wiggins finds Team Sky's next talisman in Geraint Thomas
April 03, 2015 (03:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Having spent a number of seasons in the services of Bradley Wiggins and his stage racing needs, Geraint Thomas will see those roles reversed on Sunday as the former Tour de France winner lines up as part of the Welshmans support crew at the Tour of Flanders. Wiggins, who is riding his final Classics campaign before leaving Team Sky at the conclusion of Paris Roubaix to focus on the track, is approaching the end of this particular road in his career just at Thomas is settling in as Team Skys most accomplished leader for the Classics. Wiggins believes that Thomas, after winning the E3Harelbeke, could be on the cusp of winning the teams first Monument. "We've probably got the race favourite in Geraint, so it's pretty clear-cut what we have to do. Sky is pretty good at that in terms of getting their leader where he needs to be and in Geraint we've got someone who can potentially win the race," Wiggins told Cyclingnews and one other journalist at the Three Days of De Panne.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins, of course, knows Thomas better than most. The pair were track teammates at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and formed part of Team Sky's first roster two years later. The Welshman, who is enjoying his best season since turning professional skipped Wiggins' Tour de France ride in 2012 in order to concentrate on the track but at the recent Paris-Nice, Wiggins picked up on Thomas's new-found diligence and attention to detail " a trait he himself harboured during his own stage racing purple patch. "I said to him at Paris-Nice, I've never seen him like that before. He's normally a bit away with the fairies but he was paying attention to his food and his mindset. He's spent quite a few years racing for other people, being the strongman and being praised as the super domestique but now he's getting the opportunity and position where he has the confidence to ride at the front." Speaking to Thomas over the last few weeks it is abundantly clear the man himself has harnessed a confidence that was at times missing in the past. He has dropped weight over the winter but the way he clinically disposed of the opposition in E3 Harelbeke two weeks ago displayed a new side to his game. He is not the outright favourite for Flanders but he is certain among the leading contenders. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Ellingworth: Wiggins moving in the right direction ahead of Flanders and Roubaix
April 02, 2015 (03:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins survived the opening day of the Driedaagse De Panne and remains on course for Fridays individual time trial and a bid for the overall but with one eye on the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix the former Tour de France winners primary goal is fine-tune his form ahead of the two cobbled Monuments. Wiggins was meant to line up for last weeks E3 Harelbeke but he was taken out of the team as a precaution after falling ill. He, like the majority of the field, then failed to finish Gent-Wevelgem, leaving him short of recent race miles in Belgian. De Panne was already on his schedule coming into the Classics campaign but the three-day event has become more significant in the British riders preparation in recent days.ADVERTISEMENT "Ive never seen anything like that," he told reporters when reflecting on the windy conditions at Gent-Wevelgem that saw only 39 riders finish. "Those winds were incredible but it is what it is and I need these days for Roubaix." Wiggins was often at the front of the peloton during the opening stage in De Panne and although he finished 40 seconds behind winner Alexandre Kristoff he remains on course for Fridays individual time trial. Rod Ellingworth, who linked up with Team Skys classics contingent after Gent-Wevelgem believes that the team are still reaping the rewards from a confidence-boosting win in E3 Harelbeke. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins on form and ready for final Classics with Team Sky
March 30, 2015 (03:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins believes that Team Sky can benefit from their position of Classics favourites after Tom Boonen and Fabian Cancellara were both ruled out through injury. Wiggins, returning to the Classics at Gent-Wevelgem after skipping E3 Harelbeke through illness, told Cyclingnews that the loss of Cancellara and Boonen, changes everything. Boonen crashed in Paris-Nice and dislocated his left collarbone, while Cancellara fell during E3 Harelbeke and fractured two vertebrae. QuickStep are like a different team without Tom, Wiggins told Cyclingnews at the start of Gent-Wevelgem.ADVERTISEMENT Theyre like rabbits in the headlights and they all think that they can win or have a chance. He was the gel that kept it all together. Hes not there now and Fabian has gone too, so someone like Thomas is probably the favourite for Flanders. Everyone is going to be looking at us and the emphasis falls on us. That could play into our hands because were used to doing that. Wiggins heads into the main block of the Classics with his eyes firmly on Paris-Roubaix, which will be his final race for Team Sky before he embarks on a new project with his WIGGINS team. The form is alright and its gone well over the last few days. I was a bit sick last Monday and decided to sack Friday off just for precaution more than anything, so it was never planned for me to ride this race. I think the training has gone well though and well find things out in the next couple of weeks. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins confirmed for Gent-Wevelgem
March 29, 2015 (03:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wigginshas been confirmed in Team Skys line up for Sundays Gent-Wevelgem. The world time trial champion had been set to race E3-Harelbeke but was replaced by Elia Viviani prior to the race. Wiggins travelled to Belgium on Friday to link up with his teammates after Geraint Thomas won E3, and both riders will take part in Sundays race. They will be joined by Bernhard Eisel, Andy Fenn, Christian Knees, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard and Elia Viviani in the teams selection.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins is targeting Paris-Roubaix this season and the race will be the final race he takes part in for Team Sky before he moves over to his newly-formed WIGGINS squad and concentrates on track racing ahead of the Rio Olympics in 2016. Wiggins stared his season at the Tour of Qatar in February and placed third in the individual time trial. He raced Omloop Het Nieuwsblad later that month and helped Stannard defend his race title before linking up with Team Skys stage racing squad at Paris-Nice. He rode as a domestique for winner Richie Porte but pulled out on the eve of the final time trial, instead deciding to focus on his Classics preparation. He is scheduled to race Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde next week with a remote chance that the Tour of Flanders could be added to his programme before Paris-Roubaix. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins out of E3 Harelbeke but may race Gent-Wevelgem
March 26, 2015 (18:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Despite having E3-Harelbeke on his list of spring races for the better part of three months Bradley Wiggins has not been selected for Fridays race by Team Sky. Citing a race selection policy, a team spokesperson from the team told Cyclingnews that Wiggins will instead travel to Belgium on Friday and train before a decision is made on his possible participation in Gent-Wevelgem. The world time trial champion is aiming to close his Team Sky career with a win in Paris-Roubaix next month and has built his spring around a cobbles campaign. Team Sky will line-up with Bernhard Eisel, Andy Fenn, Christian Knees, Salvatore Puccio, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard, Geraint Thomas and Elia Viviani for E3-Harelbke, with the team confirm that the squad selection for Sundays Gent-Wevelgem will be confirmed from the teams long list following the outcome of E3 Harelbeke.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins also has Scheldeprijs on March 27 on his race programme. Last month, Team Sky confirmed that the door had not completely closed on Wiggins taking part in the Tour of Flanders. To subscribe to the Cyclingnews video channel, click here. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins and Kittel head Tour de Yorkshire line-up
March 19, 2015 (02:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins and Marcel Kittel will be the stand-out names when the inaugural three-day edition of the Tour de Yorkshire gets under way in Bridlington on 1 May. The 16 eight-rider teams include WorldTour outfits Sky, Giant-Alpecin, BMC Racing, Lotto-Jumbo and IAM Cycling. 2012 Tour de France champion Wiggins is set to make his first appearance for his eponymous team at the new race, which starts just days after his transfer from Team Sky. His presence is sure to give a huge boost to the event, which Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity is already predicting will attract a million spectators. Its fantastic to hear that the UCI have cleared the way for Bradley to ride, Verity tells Cyclingnews. We all know what a great sporting icon he is in the UK and were absolutely delighted that hell be here in Yorkshire with his new team.ADVERTISEMENT Verity also hailed Giant sprinter Kittels return to Yorkshire, where he won the opening stage of last years Tour de France in Harrogate. Marcel is sure to have his eye on the opening two stages into Scarborough and York. Id certainly have my money on him for that second one, which suits the sprinters down to the ground, says Verity, adding: But I dont expect him to be in contention on the final stage, which has 3,085 metres of climbing. The presence of Cofidis and Europcar squads takes the number of teams returning to Yorkshire after last years Tour de France Grand Dpart to seven. The two French outfits will be joined by another four Pro Continental teams: Cult Energy, MTN-Qhubeka, Rompoot Oranje and Topsport Vlaanderen. Were chuffed, its a cracking line-up, says Verity, who is also very pleased to see the race graced by a strong contingent of domestic squads. Four British Continental outfits " Madison-Genesis, NFTO, ONE Pro Cycling and WIGGINS " will be joined by a Great Britain team. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
2015 Tour of Britain hoping to attract star line-up with toughest route yet
March 19, 2015 (02:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Tour of Britain race director Mick Bennett hopes that the challenging 2015 parcours will attract the biggest names in cycling, as they build up to the World Championships in Richmond. On Tuesday, Bennett announced what is probably the toughest route, and is definitely the longest, in the races history, with the Hartside Fell in the Pennines set to test the riders on stage five. There are some really brutal days out there and deliberately so, Bennett told the races website, tourofbritain.co.uk. Firstly we want our national British tour to reflect the tough terrain which is part and parcel of our cycling scene and secondly we have talked informally with the teams in recent years " and increasingly with the big World Tour teams " and they are adamant that they would welcome a couple of really testing long days ahead of the Worlds. We are very happy to oblige and it fits in perfectly with our remit of expanding the race. Competing with the Vuelta a Espaa and the Canadian WorldTour races of Montreal and Quebec, the race is fighting to make itself an ideal proving ground for World Championship hopefuls. Michal Kwiatkowski (Etixx-QuickStep) and Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) used it to perfection last year, while Mark Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) also rode the race on the way to his world title in 2011.ADVERTISEMENT Anyone hoping for longer and more challenging terrain will be delighted, with three stages of the eight-day race breaching the 200-kilometre mark and the overall route totalling 1,471 " almost 100 kilometres longer than last years race. The 2015 course breaks another record for the race with the riders taking on the Hartside Fell, which at 1,904 feet is the highest point the race has ever passed. Hartside will be the show-piece finish to stage five and Bennett expects a big battle. You would fancy the peloton to arrive at the foot of the climb pretty much intact unless the wind blows en-route, in which case it could be split asunder by the time the main challenge presents itself. And wind is not unknown in those parts, he explained. "It's (Hartside) a proper 8km climb and although the average gradient is a comparatively modest 5% up at the top there are some nasty 10% sections and a hairpin that could reward the more aggressive riders. This stage has a real sting in the tail. There will be no time trialling at this years race, with construction work preventing the organisers from using the traditional London route on the final day. It has been replaced by a corner-packed criterium through the heart of London, which Bennett says will be no easy ride. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins cleared to ride Tour de Yorkshire
March 13, 2015 (21:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins has been cleared to participate for the WIGGINS team in the Tour de Yorkshire on 1-3 May following the UCI road commissions approval of the derogation of rule 2.17.007, which stipulates that the permitted transfer window for Continental squads lies between 1-25 June. Wiggins current contract with Team Sky is due to end on 26 April. According to the UCI, the request for the relaxation of this regulation came from the WIGGINS team with the support of British Cycling, the riders national federation. Having received the approval of the UCIs road commission, Wiggins transfer will become effective from the day that the UCI receives the official registration bulletin from British Cycling. Assuming there are no hitches in the registration process, Wiggins will then line up at the head of his eponymous team for the start of the Tour de Yorkshire in Bridlington on 1 May.ADVERTISEMENT The 2012 Tour de France champion told the Cycling Podcast earlier this week that his first race for Team WIGGINS will be ASOs new Yorkshire stage race. Official confirmation of his participation is sure to boost interest in the event, for which a million spectators are already predicted to turn out. After racing in the three-day Tour de Yorkshire, Wiggins will compete in Tour Series events in the UK before turning his attention to his attempt on the World Hour Record. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Brailsford: Wiggins can go out with a win
March 06, 2015 (19:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Team Sky principle David Brailsford believes that Bradley Wiggins can end his very successful tenure with the British WorldTour team in style. Wiggins is due to leave Team Sky after targeting Paris-Roubaix next month and then join his Wiggins Continental team and race on the track for the final part of his career. "There's no reason why he can't go out with a win. He's prepared well, he's focused well and when he does that, he's terrific with preparation. He needs a big stage to perform and Paris-Roubaix is certainly that, Brailsford told Sky Sports News. Wiggins has been part of Team Sky since its inception in 2010; the team was largely built around him until recently. He landed his biggest successes in Team Sky's black and blue colours, most notably his 2012 Tour de France title. Wiggins is due to switch to the track, where he began his career, to target the Hour Record and the Olympic games in the next 18 months. Among his final races for the team, Wiggins will ride Paris-Nice, which begins this Sunday, where he won ahead of his Tour success.ADVERTISEMENT "Bradley has been an iconic figure for us in Team Sky and for British cycling. He'll start this weekend in the Paris-Nice stage race, in his last stage race for Team Sky. He's won it before and he's ready for it, said Brailsford. Then we'll go on Paris-Roubaix which will be his last race for Sky - a big one-day classic and he's ready for that too. It'll be sad to see him go, that's for sure. Team Sky has enjoyed a purple patch of late with two GC victories at the Volta ao Algarve and the Vuelta a Andaluca with Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome respectively, and Ian Stannards commanding win at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. "It's been our best start to the season ever. We've had more victories at this point of the year than we've ever had so it's been a terrific start, explains Brailsford. Brailsford claims the team have rallied over the winter, after a particularly challenging 2014 season. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins confirmed for Paris-Nice, Froome for Tirreno-Adriatico
March 03, 2015 (18:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Team Sky have revealed their rosters for March, confirming that Bradley Wiggins will ride Paris-Nice alongside Geraint Thomas and Richie Porte, while Chris Froome will have support from Peter Kennaugh, Leopold Knig, Mikel Nieve and Wout Poels as he takes on Alberto Contador at Tirreno-Adriatico. Team Sky will also ride the Tour de Langkawi (8"15 March), meaning that 25 riders from the British WorldTour team will be action in three stage races during the next two weeks. Paris-Nice will be Wiggins last major stage race of his Team Sky career. He won the 'Race to the Sun' in 2012 before going on to win the Tour de France. He could be a contender for the opening prologue and the final time trial on the Col dEze but is more likely to play a support role to Porte and Thomas as he prepares for the cobbled Classics.ADVERTISEMENT Porte won Paris-Nice in 2013 and showed that he his back to his best with second overall at the Tour Down Under and fourth at the Volta ao Algarve, won by Thomas. The Welshman lead Paris-Nice for two days in 2014 but then crashed and did not start the final stage. Completing Team Skys line-up for Paris-Nice are road captain Bernhard Eisel, Lars-Petter Nordhaug, Nicolas Roche, Luke Rowe and sprinter Ben Swift, who will target any sprint finishes as he prepares for Milan-San Remo. Froome has a solid squad as he takes on Contador Froome is looking to continue his winning streak after putting Alberto Contador to the sword at the recent Ruta del Sol and Team Sky has named a solid squad to support him. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Wiggins comes full circle at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
February 27, 2015 (20:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Racing in Belgium has the uncomfortable tendency to remind neo-professionals that theyre not in Kansas anymore. Bradley Wiggins first taste of the Classics came at Omloop Het Volk in 2002, when he lined up in the colours of La Franaise des Jeux, and once the peloton hit that peculiarly Flemish version of the yellow brick road, he was quickly jettisoned out the back. I remember almost knocking [Johan] Museeuw off on the entry to Cte du Trieu because I was fighting to be up there, Wiggins said. I had [Andrei] Tchmil on one side and Museeuw on the other and I just remember thinking to myself what the fuck are you doing here? These guys are way better than you. So I just got out of the way, went to the back, got dropped and that was it. I got dropped after 30k so I didnt even make it to the Kwaremont. Because of the respect I had for those guys I didnt want to get in their way. You have to earn the right to be in the first 20 or 30 positions with those guys.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins was speaking in Kortrijk on Friday on the eve of his first appearance at the Omloop since 2005, and while much has changed in interim " the race now carries the name of another Belgian newspaper, Het Nieuwsblad, and his old nemesis the Trieu does not feature on the parcours, for instance " the Englishman is back on familiar ground and in a familiar position. Like on those first, tentative efforts on the pav over a decade ago, Wiggins is, with Paris-Roubaix in mind, trying to earn the right to a long-term lease on some prime real estate at the head of the peloton. The Hell of the North is his final race in the colours of Team Sky, and unlike twelve months ago, Wiggins will ride a full programme of cobbled races in preparation for the last grand challenge of his road career. Its good to get into the mind-set for these races, to get to know the roads and for the others guys, Boonen and that, to see you there, Wiggins explained. When it comes to the real fight, theyre perhaps happy to sit behind you and not push you off the wheel because they know you wont lose the wheel. So its confidence for everyone that they see you there. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Provisional riders announced for Paris-Nice
February 26, 2015 (15:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
After last year's time trial free Paris-Nice, the 73rd edition of the Race to the Sun returns to its familiar format including the final day time trial up the Col d'ze,attracting former winners and current world champions. With theroute announced earlier this month, race organisers ASO have released the provisional start list, confirming the appearances ofBradley Wiggins (Team Sky), Michal Kwiatkowski (Etixx-Quick Step), Tejay van Garderen (BMC) and Fabio Aru (Astana) among many more. From the 20 teams which were selected, 22 riders have won stages at Paris-Nice, including Wiggins, Richie Porte (Team Sky), Tony Martin (Etixx-Quick Step) and Luis Leon Sanchez (Astana) who all previous overall winners. While the route will favour the chrono specialists such as Wiggins, Martin and Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin), there will be opportunities for the climbers to make their mark on the race. The French climbing triumvirate of Romain Bardet (Ag2r-La Mondiale), Warren Barguil (Giant-Alpecin) and Pierre Rolland (Europcar) will be eying off the stage four summit finish on Croix de Chaubouret as will the 2014 Tour de France king of the mountains winner Rafal Majka (Tinkoff-Saxo).ADVERTISEMENT Having placed second overall at the Tour of Oman, van Garderen will be hungry for his first win of the season and with his time trialling prowess will be another rider capable of challenging for the GC. Teammate Rohan Dennis looks like providing support as he makes his return to the road following his successful hour record attempt earlier this month. Bob Jungels (Trek) and Wilco Kelderman (Lotto-Jumbo) could spring a surprise with both riders characteristics suited to the parcours while their appearances further bolster the depth of youthful talent at the race. It isn't just about the GC men though with French road race champion Arnaud Dmare (FDJ) set to go head-to-head with former teammate Nacer Bouhanni (Cofidis) in the sprints as both riders look to open their 2015 accounts. However, they'll need to get the better of Andre Greipel (Lotto Soudal), John Degenkolb (Giant-Alpecin) and Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) who already have wins to their names in 2015 and will be looking for more success ahead of the classics You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Ellingworth: No rider is guaranteed leadership in Paris-Roubaix
February 26, 2015 (00:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Team Sky riders will have to prove their credentials if they are to secure leadership roles in Paris-Roubaix, says Rod Ellingworth, the teams head of performance operations. The team heads into the Spring Classics with a number of potential leaders, including Bradley Wiggins, Ian Stannard, Luke Rowe and Geraint Thomas. On Saturday the squad seek to defend Stannards crown in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad before racing Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins has pencilled in Paris-Roubaix as his final race for the WorldTour team before he takes his place in his new WIGGINS squad and aims for the Hour Record. However, Ellingworth has insisted that reputation alone will not guarantee leadership, a factor that Wiggins voiced at the Tour of Qatar earlier this month. I dont think anyone in the team has the right to be the leader for Paris-Roubaix. Theres a lot of racing between now and then and what weve learnt is that anything can happen so theres no point now saying were going to ride solely for one person, Ellingworth told Cyclingnews. Were keeping all the doors and opportunities open and what we do is have a long list, and well have that until the last few days before. Its about taking the best eight or nine riders and theres no personal deals and the best guys will be on the line. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Bradley Wiggins to ride Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
February 24, 2015 (15:15) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Bradley Wiggins will ride Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday to kick off his cobbled Classics campaign ahead of his tilt at Paris-Roubaix in April. The 2012 Tour de France champion, enjoying his final few months with Team Sky before he joins his new WIGGINS outfit, will head up a eight-man team at the 70th edition of the race, which takes place across 200.2km in the Flanders region of Belgium. Also in the line-up is Ian Stannard, who won last years race after out-sprinting Greg Van Avermaet in miserable conditions. That success seemed like a potentially seminal moment in the 27-year-olds career but it was followed by setbacks as he fractured a vertebra in Gent-Wevelgem less than a month later, before fracturing his wrist on his return to racing at the Tour of Britain.ADVERTISEMENT Like Wiggins and other Classics hopefuls, he rode at the Tour of Qatar and eased himself back into racing with an encouraging fourth place on the overall. Both men have used the time since Qatar to travel to Flanders and familiarise themselves with some of the key cobbled sections and climbs. Skys roster is completed by Luke Rowe, Bernhard Eisel, Andy Fenn, Christian Knees, Salvatore Puccio and Chris Sutton. The team will take stock after the race before deciding on a line-up for Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne the next day. After a good training period over the winter we have a strong group heading into the Classics, said the team's sports director for the race, Servais Knaven. We're excited to get started with this key phase of the season. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Climbers will have their day at 2015 Tour of California
February 20, 2015 (13:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
The 2015 Amgen Tour of California will return to Sacramento for its opening stage and finish eight days later in the shadow of the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, race organiser AEG announced on Thursday. The 10th edition of the race will take place May 10-17 and return to the stunning Pacific Coast as it follows a north-south route over 1,165 kilometres. The course promises plenty of variety, with multiple days for the sprinters and more than 13,000 metres of climbing throughout the eight days, including an encounters with Balcom Canyon and Mount Hamilton, as well as a return to Mt. Baldy. Weve reached a milestone this year with the 10th edition of the race, and we want everything to reflect that cache, from the best lineup of teams weve ever had to an unbelievably beautiful and exciting route, said Kristin Bachochin Klein, executive director of the Amgen Tour of California and senior vice president of AEG Sports. All of the pieces of the race have come together to set the stage for something truly legendary and memorable. I think its going to be a year for the record books.ADVERTISEMENT Unlike 2014, when eventual winner Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) seized the race lead during the stage 2 time trial in Folsom, the general classification this year will likely be sorted out in the closing days, starting with the 24km individual time trial in Big Bear on May 15. The racing will begin with two days for the sprinters on a circuit that starts and finishes in the state capitol of Sacramento, followed by a 193km trek from Nevada City to Lodi. In 2014, the sprint between Mark Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) and John Degenkolb (Giant-Alpecin) in Sacramento resulted in the closest margin of victory in race history, with Cavendish taking the win by three millimetres. Stage 2 will start with a short circuit on the historic Nevada City Classic course. Riders will get their first taste of the climbing that lies ahead when the race visits San Jose for the 10th consecutive year. From San Jose, the riders will head toward Livermore on a familiar route via Calaveras Road. The narrow, twisty road makes it easy for a breakaway group to escape out of sight of the peloton. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Merckx: Hour Record and Paris-Roubaix success would make Wiggins a complete champion
February 17, 2015 (11:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Eddy Merckx believes that Bradley Wiggins would be a complete champion should the British Tour de France winner secure titles in Paris-Roubaix and the Hour Record. Wiggins is targeting the Classics this spring before ending his WorldTour career with Team Sky. Paris-Roubaix forms the cornerstone of his cobbled ambitions as he looks to step down from the top of professional road racing with a Monument win. Wiggins is more motivated now and hes a complete rider, Merckx told Cyclingnews at the recent Tour of Qatar. Hes been good in the mountains and he can ride over the cobbles. Hes maybe not as good on the climbs as he was because hes put on some weight but thats given him more power and thats going to be important for the spring.ADVERTISEMENT Team Sky and Wiggins have conquered the Tour de France together, winning the race in 2012 before the British team returned in 2013 for their second straight title, courtesy of Chris Froome. Despite Grand Tour successes the team have struggled to find the right blend and formula in one-day racing. Podiums in the Classics have been few and far between and although they have won important one-day races in Belgium, success in one of cyclings monuments still alludes them. Paris-Roubaix is a race where its every man for himself. If youre good on the pave then you just need that little bit of luck so that you dont have a flat at a bad moment, said Merckx, who won Roubaix on three occasions during his incredible career. Hell be there for sure and if he wins there, for his career, and goes on to take the Hour Record, that will make him a big champion, a very complete champion. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Rapha to produce WIGGINS team kit
February 16, 2015 (16:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
This story first appeared on BikeRadar Rapha has announced a new partnership with Tour winner and Olympic champion Bradley Wiggins. The British brand will be creating team kit for the stars Wiggins team, which will launch following the knight of the realms last outing with Team Sky in April. Over the next three years, Raphas Wiggins team wear will expand into a wider range of clothing too, taking the brand into the Rio 2016 Olympic games and beyond.ADVERTISEMENT Wiggins said: Ive got to know the Rapha team well over the last few years at Team Sky; theyre serious about design and they love cycling almost as much as I do. I want a range of kit that looks great but is also functionally practical for todays cyclists in all their different shapes and sizes, and I know Simon and the team at Rapha will do the business. Rapha states that Wiggins will use his experience to advise Raphas designers on a new range of apparel that incorporates the latest developments in performance sportswear. The single image of the jersey design provided by Rapha shows Wiggins influence with a mod roundel on the left of the chest. The image also appears to confirm that Sky will be involved in the team as a sponsor. There are also six gold stripes near the hem, presumably to represent Wiggins six world championship track gold medals. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...

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