Road Bike Action News August 28

No Replacement Sponsor for Gerolsteiner

The Gerolsteiner team has effectively ended its hopes of finding a new sponsor and is now set to sell off its assests at the end of October, their team manager said on Thursday. In September 2007, the German mineral water manufacturer announced it would not renew their sponsorship at the end of 2008 season and the Gerolsteiner team had been unsuccessfully trying to find a new benefactor.

“We will not continue to search actively for a new sponsor and, if no replacement is found, we will sell off our team’s base and equipment at the end of October,” team manager Hans Michael Holczer told Germany agency SID. With the Tour of Germany set to start on Friday, Gerolsteiner will continue to compete on the Pro Tour circuit until the end of the year.

Tour de France king of the mountains Bernhard Kohl has reportedly reached an agreement already with a new team for 2009, but will not announce his destination until September. Other riders have been released to seek other destinations.

In a display of solidarity, Germany’s other top Pro Tour team Milram has indicated its intentions of offering positions to as many Gerolsteiner riders and staff members as possible.ÿ

Evans Continues with Silence-Lotto

Cadel Evans has signed up with his Silence team for two more seasons, the Belgian outfit announced this week. Evans finished second in the Tour de France for the second year in a row at the end of July having worn the yellow jersey for five days.

“This is fantastic news,” said Silence representative Marc Coucke. “There have been a lot of rumours about Cadel leaving for another team but I am happy to be able to count on him till 2010.”

Can Voigt Three-peat in Home Tour?

Team CSC-Saxo Bank’s turbo diesel, Jens Voigt, will line up to defend his back to back victories in the Deutschland Tour this Friday. Already the first rider to win the week-long German tour two years in a row, Voigt is considered by many to be a favorite for a third victory even if the strongman himself isn’t so sure.

“It’ll be hard because I’m not in as good shape as this time last year or the year before that, where I came directly from a great Tour de France,” Voigt commented on the team’s website. “This year there’s been a couple of weeks extra gap in between the two races because of the Olympics, which means my form has had to last that much longer.”

“I really like this race so I’m definitely gonna do my very best to win or alternatively help one of my teammates to win it,” he added.

Supporting Voigt at CSC will be Lasse B?chman, Kasper Klostergaard, Gustav Larsson, Marcus Ljungqvist, Jason McCartney and Nicki S?rensen. Chris Anker S?rensen was scheduled to race but has been forced to withdraw due to knee problems.

Jens Voigt is the only two-time winner of the Deutschland Tour
(Photo: Roberto Bettini)

Strong Field for Univest GP

The Univest Grand Prix returns to eastern Pennsylvania with a tough 100-mile road race on Saturday, September 6 that begins and ends in Souderton and a criterium the next day in Doylestown. This year’s race will feature another strong line-up of teams, including the Garmin-Chipotle team led by defending champion Will Frischkorn and Tom Danielson. The American duo willÿ

face an impressive line-up of top international cycling talent from more than two dozen teams and a half-dozen countries who are determined to take the prize in this European-style classic.

Other top teams include the Polish-registered Amore e Vita/McDonalds team with Ukrainian Yury Metlushenko, who won an exciting photo-finish in the Lehigh Valley Classic and was second overall in the 2008 Commerce Bank Triple Crown of Cycling. Top American teams in the 2008 Univest Grand Prix include Kelly Benefits, Jittery Joe’s, Rite Aid Pro Cycling and Team Type 1.ÿ

“This is a true North American pro classic that always attracts the best cycling talent on the continent, and they will compete against some of the best racers from around the world,” said race director (and RBA contributor) John Eustice, president of Sparta Cycling Inc. “And it’s not just Garmin-Chipotle who will make the road race very tough. Look for Tecos, Team Type 1 and the Italians to be in there stirring up the action.”

Vuelta Medical Tests Begin

On Thursday 28th August, a total of 170 drug tests were carried out on cyclists registered in the Vuelta a Espana. The Spanish grand tour is the first big test in which biological passports are to be enforced.

“All riders will have their biological passport in order,” explained V’ctor Cordero, general director of the Vuelta. “The laboratory in Madrid, furthermore, is equipped with the technology necessary to detect (latest generation EPO) CERA.”

Three Cities Compete for 2010 Tour Start

Three cities are currently in the running to host the Grand Depart of the 2010 Tour de France. Dusseldorf, Germany and the Dutch cities of Rotterdam and Utrecht have each submitted canidatures to the Tour organizers in the hope of kicking off the traditional biannual foreign soil send-off of France’s grand tour.

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