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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Thursday, December 27, 2018

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2018 Tour de France | 2018 Giro d'Italia

How much more grievous are the consequences of anger than the causes of it. - Marcus Aurelius

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Gazprom-Rusvelo announces team roster and staff changes

Here's the team's post:

The first pre-season training camp of the Russian professional cycling team Gazprom — RusVelo is coming to an end. Team's General manager Renat Khamidulin is glad to announce the newcomers and changes for the upcoming season:

“There is a significant change of generations in Russian cycling and we are not only facing it, we are in charge of this process. Over the last two years the average age of our riders has been decreasing and next season Gazprom — RusVelo will be one of the youngest in the peloton. There is no doubt that the work on the development of young riders is a highly demanding process. That is why, we have specialists whom we can rely on: Denis Menchov, Evgeny Petrov and Andrey Solomennikov are joining our board of Sport Directors, as well as Michele Devoti is back with the team.

We are grateful to our technical sponsors, who have been supporting us for years, providing equipment of impeccable quality. Gazprom — RusVelo will continue competing on the legendary Colnago bicycles — maestro Ernesto is not just a sponsor, but the experienced mentor and close friend of the team. The eminent manufacturers of cycling equipment: Campagnolo, Deda Elementi, Elite, Look, Tufo will continue collaborating with the team.

I am glad to announce that in 2019 the list of our technical sponsors will be enlarged with world-known brands: Limar (helmets and sunglasses), Prologo (saddles), Sidi (cycling shoes) and UYN (cycling apparel). We are also very grateful to our title sponsor Gazprom, which brings us confidence in our future” — Renat Khamidulin.

Denis Menchov is glad to join Gazprom — RusVelo:
“In the recent years we have often talked with Renat (Khamidulin) about the possibility of joining the team. I should admit, it took me a while to make this decision, but of course I am very glad to become a part of the only Russian professional team. I hope my experience will be useful and I will be able to share it with the young riders”.

Denis Menchov

Denis Menchov winning stage 20 of the 2012 Vuelta, the year before he retired as a racer. Sirotti photo

Evgeny Petrov about his new role in cycling:
“Just two years ago I was competing as a rider. After finishing my career, I knew that I wanted to come back to cycling in a new role and be useful for the development of the Russian cycling and youngsters in particular. Gazprom — RusVelo is a great team with a plenty of talented athletes, which perfectly suited my ambitions. At the moment, we are at the pre-season training camp in Spain, everyone is in upbeat mood and we look forward to starting the upcoming races”.

Sport Directors: Alexey Markov, Michele Devoti, Denis Menchov, Evgeny Petrov, Paolo Rosola, Alexander Serov, Andrey Solomennikov.

Gazprom — RusVelo roster for 2019:
Ildar Arslanov, Igor Boev, Nikolay Cherkasov, Alexander Evtushenko, Evgeny Kobernyak, Vlad Kulikov, Alexander Kulikovskiy, Alexey Kurbatov, Stepan Kurianov, Denis Nekrasov, Artem Nych, Alexander Porsev, Petr Rikunov, Ivan Rovny, Alexey Rybalkin, Evgeny Shalunov, Sergey Shilov, Mamyr Stash, Alexander Vlasov, Anton Vorobyev.

Accell North America (Raleigh, Diamondback, Redline & others) boss says company is recovering

Here's the story Bicycle Retailer & Industry News sent me:

KENT, Wash. (BRAIN) — The CEO of Accell North America says he is feeling "very good" about where the business is and he's expecting a lot of improvement in 2019.

ANA's parent, Netherlands-based Accell Group, announced Tuesday that it was no longer tracking the North American business as a core part of its business. It said it planned to re-evaluate the business in six to nine months with an eye toward selling or right-sizing it.

John Short, who was named CEO of ANA in April this year, said the announcement was necessary but that ANA is continuing to move forward on a 24-month plan to achieve break-even earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT). Those 24 months are up at the end of 2019.

Will ANA make the goal?

"We've done a huge amount of positive work at ANA that I view as foundation building," Short told BRAIN. "We have delivered a significant overall improvement from the ugly numbers that we saw in 2017. As we look at the current performance, we are most likely going to need more than those 24 months to get to EBIT break-even. As we move into 2019 we'll get closer, but it's going to be tough to get there by the end of 2019."

Tuesday's announcement, he said, "doesn't mean by any stretch of imagination that ANA is going to disappear or the brands are going to disappear. In fact I think our brands are getting a lot of attention as we move online and are getting stronger."

Short said ANA is continuing to work to rebuild a U.S. dealer base with an omnichannel program that includes enlisting brick-and-mortar retailers to assemble and fulfill online bike orders driven through ANA’s Beeline SaaS (software as a service) model. Retailers who enroll in this program receive a commission and, more importantly, a new customer. Short calls it “paid customer acquisition.”

“In the branded businesses I grew up in, we had to know the cost to acquire a new customer. Often the cost was $50, $100 or more for each new customer. Our fulfillment program is real benefit to retailers because we are delivering them a new customer and paying them for it,” he said.

ANA also offers retailers subscriptions to the Beeline software that is used to schedule service appointments and efficiently fulfill online orders. ANA acquired the Beeline mobile franchise business in April after holding a minority share in the company previously.

Since ANA went through a restructuring process last fall company officials have shared that its problems stemmed from the loss of bike sales through the sporting goods channel combined with online bike sales that often undercut dealer prices. The company spent the past year getting rid of excess inventory, refocusing its brands and product lines, cleaning up online pricing with a monitored minimum advertised price program, and developing new dealer programs.

You can read the entire story here.

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