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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Sunday, December 15, 2019

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary | Our YouTube page
2019 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

Promises are like crying babies in a theater, they should be carried out at once. - Norman Vincent Peale

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Astana presents 2020 roster

Here's the team's news release:

On Saturday, 14th December, the official team presentation of the UCI WorldTour Astana Pro Team was held in Calpe, Spain. Surrounded by the team’s sponsors and international media 27 of the 28 riders from the new roster were presented as Artyom Zakharov these days is taking part in the UCI Track World Cup in Brisbane, Australia.

Tea Astana

Team Astana is presented.

Alexander Aranburu (ESP), Zhandos Bizhigitov (KAZ), Manuele Boaro (ITA), Hernando Bohorquez (COL), Rodrigo Contreras (COL), Laurens De Vreese (BEL), Fabio Felline (ITA), Daniil Fominykh (KAZ), Omar Fraile (ESP), Jakob Fuglsang (DEN), Yevgeniy Gidich (KAZ), Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (DEN), Dmitriy Gruzdev (KAZ), Hugo Houle (CAN), Ion Izagirre (ESP), Gorka Izagirre (ESP), Miguel Angel Lopez (COL), Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ), Davide Martinelli (ITA),  Merhawi Kudus (ERI), Yuriy Natarov (KAZ), Vadim Pronskiy (KAZ), Oscar Rodriguez (ESP), Luis Leon Sanchez (ESP), Nikita Stalnov (KAZ), Harold Tejada (COL), Aleksandr Vlasov (RUS) and Artyom Zakharov (KAZ) will represent the Kazakh team throughout the 2020 cycling season.

- Today we are starting our 15th season. A long way has been done so far and we have achieved many big goals. But I am sure, that many great and amazing things are still lying further ahead. We are starting the new season completely ready and high motivated for something more. I would like to congratulate all Astana Pro Team on a very beautiful and successful season we had in 2019 and I’d like to wish the guys to reach even bigger successes in the upcoming year. I thank all our sponsors for staying next to us in the new season and for supporting our ambitious sports project, - said Alexandr Vinokurov, General Manager of Astana Pro Team.

After the audience had seen the highlights from the last 14 years of the team, Alexandr Vinokurov was proud to announce the resigning of longtime partner Premier Tech for another three years. With more visibility, Premier Tech will be seen on the newly designed jersey by Giordana next to the main team sponsor Samruk-Kazyna.

Another special feature of the jersey will be found on the back. 2020 will be the team’s 15th season in the highest level of pro cycling. Therefore, the designer honored the biggest wins in the team’s history, the Olympics, Giro d`Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a España on the backside of the jersey.

The new bike, Wilier 0 SLR, the first ultra-lightweight racing bike with disc brakes and fully integrated cables in the colors of the Kazakh team was presented in a spectacular way to the guests at the presentation.

To celebrate and round off a successful evening, sponsor Vini Fantini produced a special bottle of wine to celebrate the upcoming 15th season of Astana Pro Team.

During the Media Day just after the official part of the team’s presentation, the Astana leaders shared their main goals in the 2020 season. Jakob Fuglsang will take the leading role in the team at the Giro d’Italia, while Miguel Angel Lopez is going to debut at the Tour de France. The national champion of Kazakhstan Alexey Lutsenko will aim the Tour de Flanders and the Ardennes classics before joining Miguel Angel Lopez at the Tour de France. Next to that, Lutsenko will participate in the Olympic Games.

- I am really happy to say that I am going to take part in the next Tour de France. It will be my debut in this amazing race, and I am excited to lead the team in France. It will be a big challenge for me, but I will do my best to come there in top form and to perform as well as possible. Also, I am sure, I will have a strong and motivated team next to me. Of course, there is still a long way until the start of the Tour, and I will have other big goals before it. I am really motivated to start this season in a good way and to get some nice results before the Tour de France, - said Miguel Angel Lopez.

- This year I am planning to do the Giro d’Italia and it will be a great moment for me to come back to the Italian Grand tour again. This is one of the most beautiful races in the calendar and I have some great memories back in 2016 when we won it together with the team. Actually, it is going to be my first time as the team’s leader in this race and it is a big honor and at the same time a big challenge for me. Also, after the Giro I plan to help Miguel Angel Lopez at the Tour de France before another big goal of 2020 – the Olympic Games in Tokyo, - said Jakob Fuglsang.

- This season I would like to do the Ardennes classics  because these races suit me really well, but just before it, I am planning to ride the Tour of Flanders as I love this race so much. At the Tour de France, I am going to help Miguel Angel Lopez, but also, I will be aiming to try to win a stage. And, of course, my main goal of the season – the Olympic Games in Tokyo. I want to be there in top shape to try to give my all for a good result, - said Alexey Lutsenko.

Team Movistar at Calpe training camp

Here's the team's update:

Six weeks after their first meeting as a group with the traditional, technical / logistical camp in Pamplona, the whole Movistar Team is getting together again on Friday 13th, and through Wednesday 18th, in Calpe (Alicante) for their second 2020 stage, the first real training camp of the season for Abarca Sports’ women’s and men’s teams.

Team Movistar

Team Movistar (shown at the 2019 Vuelta) is at Calpe for training. Sirotti photo

All riders of the squad managed by Eusebio Unzué for next year have been called up to the Costa Blanca this week bar the two currently recovering from injuries: Mathias Norsgaard, who underwent surgery in Denmark this week to repair his fractures in the right leg, following the awful incident suffered in Girona last week, and Albert Torres, still in pain to his hip and ribs after a crash earlier this month at a Track World Cup event in Hong Kong.

Biomechanical adjustments, physical and technical tests and meetings on nutrition and internal organisation, as well as sponsor commitments, complete, together with the training rides, the menu for the Movistar Team through next Wednesday. That day, the whole team will travel to Madrid for the 2020 team launch at Telefónica’s main headquarters (Thursday 19th, 11am), where they will be available to the media.

Selle Royal Group looks for financial partner to accelerate growth

Bike Europe sent me this:

POZZOLEONE, Italy - Selle Royal Group has retained UBS for finding it a financial partner. The privately owned Italian company that claims to be the world leader in premium branded saddles as well as bike parts and accessories, is aiming for an acceleration of its growth according to the strategic principles determined by current shareholders and management.

Preliminary offers are expected by mid-February 2020.

In 2019, Selle Royal’s net sales will stand at 130 million euro and ebitda of 14.6 million euro.

You can read the entire story here.

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