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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion
Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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Today's Races

First of all, we've got two 1.1-ranked single day races being run today. In Northern Italy the three-race series Trittico Lombardo (Lombardy Triptych) continues. Yesterday Elia Viviani won the Coppa Bernocchi. Today is the Coppa Ugo Agostoni and tomorrow (Thursday) the Tre Valle Varesine will be held.

Today in Belgium, the Grand Prix de Wallonie is being run. With it's finish at the Citadel de Namur, we can check out the form of the "punchers".

Oh, just got the BMC team roster for the GP de Wallonie:

The BMC Racing Team will field a seven-man roster for GP de Wallonie Wednesday that includes 2012 runner-up Greg Van Avermaet.

Three Stagiaires On The Roster: Van Avermaet, winner of a stage of the Eneco Tour of Benelux in August, notched a pair of top 10 finishes Friday and Sunday at the Grands Prix Cyclistes in Canada. The BMC Racing Team's roster for the 198.2-kilometer race in Belgium also includes stagiaires Luke Davison, Dylan Teuns and Loic Vliegen. Teuns was the BMC Racing Team's top finisher (10th overall) Sunday at the Friends Life Tour of Britain, while Rick Zabel had five top 10 finishes at the race.

Riders: Luke Davison (AUS), Yannick Eijssen (BEL), Steve Morabito (SUI), Dylan Teuns (BEL), Greg Van Avermaet (BEL), Loic Vliegen (BEL), Rick Zabel (GER).

Greg van Avermaet

Greg van Avermaet winning 2014 Eneco Tour stage 5. Photo ©Sirotti

Here's Cannondale's press release about Viviani's Coppa Bernocchi victory:

The main goal for the Green Machine at the Coppa Bernocchi - win; mission accomplished. Today, Italian team leader Elia Viviani won the first race of the Trittico Lombardo, a three race cycling competition which also includes the Tre Valli Varesine and the Coppa Ugo Agostoni. Cannondale Pro Cycling showcased how great they worked together as a team, managing the race well from start to finish. Viviani won the sprint leaving behind Filippo Pozzato (Lampre-Merida) and Simone Ponzi (Neri Sottoli), while Peter Sagan, who worked to support his teammate in the finale, took the 7th place.

"We were here to win, and when you're named as the favorite it's never easy to do it," said Viviani. "I'm really happy for this success - this is a great award for my teammates and the support they gave me. We built this win during all the race, managing the breakaway and then forcing to select the peloton. In the finale, even if the bunch was closed to catch us, I was confident to be able to win."

"After the Tour de France, I had a period of rest and was very useful for the final part of the season. In Colorado I found again the feeling with the win but, most important, I improved the level of my condition. I had positive signals at Brussels Classics and GP de Fourmies - today I just exploited the result of these efforts. I've only one regret - not being included in the list of the Italian team for Ponferrada. Anyway I'll be there to support my girlfriend and my colleagues."

"It was a perfect race, and one of the few we've had during the season," explained team director Alberto Volpi. "We did what we planned in the morning, and I've just to congratulate all the guys for the great work they did."

The Coppa Bernocchi Cannondale Pro Cycling's 17th success of the season, and it is Elia Viviani's 6thwin. The Italian rider will race his last race of the season this Saturday at Memorial Pantani, which he won in 2010. 

Elia Viviani

Elia Viviani wins the 2014 Coppa Bernocchi. Filippo Pozzato is second. Photo ©Sirotti.

And Lampre-Merida on the Coppa Bernocchi:

Lampre-Merida's cyclist [Filippo Pozzato] was preceded by Viviani in the final sprint of Coppa Bernocchi (190,3 km). The arrival in Legnano saw a select group of riders battle for the victory. After that, the race was led in different moments by Marycz, De Ketele, Ewan and Valencia. Wackermann also tried to join the head of the race with Cecchinel, Van Zyl and Diez, but their attempt was unsuccessful.

In the final kilometers Pozzato received the support from Ulissi and by quick rider Bonifazio, so he could approach the sprint in the best way, but Viviani was too fast.

"I believed in the opportunity of getting to the victory, I did my best in the sprint - Pozzato explained - I approached the sprint in the best possible way, I was aware I could win; unfortunately, Viviani performed an amazing sprint, his speed was unbeatable. I won't be in Coppa Agostoni, so I won't have the opportunity to repeat my 2013 victory, but I'll be at the start of Tre Valli Varesine".

2014 Coppa Bernocci sprint

The 2014 Coppa Bernocchi sprint. Pozzato can't get by Viviani. Photo ©Bettini

BMC Announces its World Time Trial Roster

Here's BMC's release about its TTT squad:

The BMC Racing Team's six-man roster for the UCI world team time trial Sunday will include USA Pro Challenge winner Tejay van Garderen and Slovakian national time trial champion Peter Velits.

Van Garderen and Velits will be joined by Rohan Dennis – silver medalist in the individual time trial in the Commondwealth Games – Silvan Dillier, Daniel Oss and Manuel Quinziato. The six will race their BMC timemachine TM01s over a 57.1-kilometer course in Ponferrada, Spain. The BMC Racing Team was runner-up in the inaugural world team time trial in 2012 and finished fourth last year. Manuel Quinziato and Tejay van Garderen were on the roster of both squads. Velits, a three-time national time trial champion, has been part of the winning team time trial squad the past two seasons.

Riders: Rohan Dennis (AUS), Silvan Dillier (SUI), Daniel Oss (ITA), Manuel Quinziato (ITA), Tejay van Garderen (USA), Peter Velits (SVK).

Tejay van Gardeen

Tejay van Garderen at the start of the 2014 Tour de France. Photo ©Sirotti

Rider Signings

Alejandro Valverde prolongs with Movistar: Alejandro Valverde has agreed to keep riding with Movistar for three more years. Valverde turned professional for Kelme in 2002 and rode for that team though the 2004 season. Since 2005 he has ridden for Movistar. Valverde has a rich list of wins including the 2009 Vuelta a España; 2008, 2009 Critérium du Dauphiné; 2006, 2008 Liège-Bastone-Liège; 2008, 2014 CLasica San Sebastian and the 2014 Roma Maxima.

His career is clouded by a two-year suspension for his involvement in the Operacion Puerto blood doping scandal.

Alejandro Valverde

Alejandro Valverde wins the 2014 Clasica San Sebastian. Photo ©Sirotti

Björn Thurau moves on: Wanting to ride for a team with a German sponsor, Björn Thurau will leave Europcar, the team he has been riding for since 2012, and transfer to Bora, the new name for NetApp-Endura. Though Thurau won the Mountains Classification at this year's Tour of Switzerland, he has never won a professional race. He is the son of legendary cyclist Didi Thurau.

Bjorn Thurau

Björn Thurau at the 2014 Tour of Switzerland. Photo ©Sirotti

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