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Cycling Racing News and Opinion
August 17, 2014

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Lloyd Mondory Wins Stage Four of Vuelta a Burgos

It has been a while for Ag2r's Lloyd Mondory. He hadn't won a race since early 2011. After he won stage four of the Vuelta a Burgos, he had this to say:

“The stage win was today clearly announced as the team’s goal. We knew that in the case of a final sprint I will be able to win in view of my results for twenty days. A breakaway could also be successful and Axel Domont has done a good job from the start in order to be present in the daily breakaway. Some dangerous riders for the overall standings were present in this group and the pack decided to keep in place a steady tempo to maintain the gap.

"At this point, the possibility to see a small group to compete for stage win is starting to get important, especially because a difficulty was placed twenty kilometers from the finish and some riders could try to make a difference in this climb. The team rode perfectly and we caught Axel at the foot of the bump. Blel (Kadri), Rinaldo (Nocentini), Seb Minard and Seb Turgot has worked well. Blel attacked in the climb to speed the pace up and leave behind some more riders. A small group arrived at the summit before tackling the descent. Blel has been caught five kilometers from the finish. Then, Rinaldo has perfectly organized the last two kilometers to permit me to be in the best conditions to sprint. The “two” Sebastien brought me well and finally, I had need to pedal only during 200 meters to go to win! I thank all my teammates because it’s above all the victory of a team that assumed its responsibilities in the final part and that successfully concluded. That’s a great time for me and the team. I’m in a very good shape and I obtain good results since the “Régions Wallonnes”. My 4th place on the 1st stage of this Vuelta a Burgos gave me a boost of confidence and that’s important when you work to win. I had ups and downs after my surgery and regain the confidence was essential. Today, I’m happy for myself, for the team and for my family who supported me. I also think to my friend Kristof Goddaert who passed away this year.”  

Lloyd Mondory

Lloyd Mondory (Ag2r) riding in stage six of this year's Tour of Switzerland. Photo ©Sirotti

Alexis Vuillermoz Breaks Hand During Training Ride

It wasn't all good news for Ag2r. They sent out this note about their rider Alexis Vuillermoz (11th in the 2014 Giro d'Italia): Victim of a fall during training, Alexis Vuillermoz suffered a fractured fourth metacarpal. It will be decided next Tuesday if surgery is needed or not by agreement with the team’s doctor. Then, we will know rather more about how long he will be unavailable.

Cannondale Squad for USA Pro cycling Challenge

Here's Cannondale's press release for their upcoming participation in the USA Pro Cycling challenge: Cannondale Pro Cycling targets its third event of the season in the U.S.A. and from Monday, August 18, through Sunday, August 24, the team will attend the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado. Since the Green Machine's first attendance in 2011, the connection to the American race has been strong - three stage wins marking some key victories for the team with two for Elia Viviani and four wins last year with Peter Sagan.

The eight riders selected for the 2014 edition aim to continue the success Cannondale Pro Cycling has found at the USA the USA Pro Challenge, starting with fast man Elia Viviani. For the Italian sprinter, the USA Pro Challenge is one of the most important events in the second part of his season.

"I've great memories from my last attendance in Colorado" said Viviani. "It was an exciting experience and I really hope to take again at least one win. After the Tour de France my focus moved on this races. I had a period of rest and then started training and racing to prepare well for the sprints in Colorado. I'm really motivated to do my best."

For Viviani the USA Pro Challenge will be the seasonal debut in the U.S.A. while Ivan Basso, Matej Mohoric, Alan Marangoni, Cristiano Salerno and Cameron Wurf raced almost two weeks ago at the Tour of Utah. For American Ted King this will be his official return to action after the unlucky experience at the Tour de France. Young German rider Michel Koch completes the roster, led by team director Alberto Volpi.

Elia Viviani

Elia Viviani wins stage three of this year's Coppi-Bartali week. Photo ©Sirotti

Lotto-Belisol Happy with Wellens' Performance at Eneco

Lotto-Belisol was justifiably happy with Tim Wellens outstanding ride yesterday at the Eneco Tour. Here's their press release:

Tim Wellens won the sixth stage of the Eneco Tour today. The finish line was drawn on La Redoute, Wellens had 50 seconds advantage on his first chaser Lars Boom. The 23-year-old didn't only take his first pro win ever, but he's also the new leader. Boom is second in GC at seven seconds, Dumoulin is third at thirteen seconds. Jelle Vanendert moved up to the fourteenth place in GC.

A group of eight jumped away soon after the start. The break with Boonen and Nuyens had a maximal advantage of 7'25". Nathan Haas stayed ahead the longest. Then there were attacks of Pichot and Jeannesson. Wellens bridged to Jeannesson first and then both joined Pichot. At the foot of the penultimate climb Wellens had already left his companions behind. He started solo at the last ascent of La Redoute and won impressively.

Tim Wellens: "Before the start we had agreed to see how far Jelle and I would get. After the stage to Geraardsbergen yesterday I already had a good feeling, although that wasn't completely my terrain. This morning I noticed my legs felt good again and that it could be my day. When I jumped away the riders behind me didn't give full gas. The team captains were isolated and there wasn't any organization. Afterwards Lars Boom did everything he could to get rid of GC leader Tom Dumoulin and then the tempo was raised."

"The stage win was my first goal and then getting in top ten, that was really important for the team. Considering I stood at 49 seconds I never thought I would be able to get the first position. Fantastic that I win and take the jersey as well. Tomorrow we will do everything we can to keep that jersey. The bonification seconds will play a role, so we will have to race attentively."

Herman Frison, sports director: "Tim did what we had asked. Jelle and he were the leaders, both were attentive in the final. It was perfect that Tim Wellens could jump to Jeannesson and Pichot on the Côte de Chambralles. From the team car we encouraged Tim and he followed our advice. He rode a marvellous last twenty kilometers. Tomorrow the team will lead Tim to the crucial points in the stage. Apart from the battle for the stage win there will be a fight for GC as well. What Tim did today was fantastic; leaving such big names at more than fifty seconds." 

Tim Wellens

Tim Wellens wins Eneco Tour Stage Six. Photo ©Sirotti

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