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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Tuesday, October 13, 2020

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2020 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

I think, at a child's birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift should be curiosity. - Eleanor Roosevelt

Current racing:

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Team Jumbo-Visma won't start in today’s tenth stage of the Giro d’Italia

Here's the team's announcement:

Steven Kruijswijk will not appear at the start of the tenth stage of the Giro d’Italia. The Dutch leader of Team Jumbo-Visma tested positive on Covid-19 on the rest day. As a result, he has to leave the race.

Kruijswijk has no complaints or symptoms and he was very motivated to win this Giro d’Italia. He received the news of his positive test this morning. The other riders and staff members of Team Jumbo-Visma tested negative twice and may continue the Giro d’Italia.

For Kruijswijk the news comes very unexpected. "Within the team we take a lot of measures to avoid contamination. And I just feel fit. I can’t believe I got it. It is a very big disappointment to get this news. It is a pity that I have to leave the Giro this way.”

Update: Team Jumbo-Visma won't start in today’s tenth stage of the Giro d’Italia. More information will follow.

Mitchelton-SCOTT withdraws from Giro d’Italia

The team sent me this bad news:

Mitchelton-SCOTT, in agreement with RCS Sport, has withdrawn its team from the current Giro d’Italia following the results of the first rest day RT-PCR tests.

Following two rounds of negative COVID-19 test results on Friday and Saturday, the team was notified of four positive results for staff members from testing conducted on Sunday evening.

Upon receiving the results, Mitchelton-SCOTT immediately withdrew its team from the race and will focus on the health of its riders and staff and their safe movement to areas of quarantine.

Brent Copeland – General Manager:
“Unfortunately we received the news on Monday evening that we have returned a number of positive COVID-19 results to members of our staff after our third round of tests in three days.

“As a social responsibility to our riders and staff, the peloton and the race organisation we have made the clear decision to withdraw from the Giro d’Italia.

“Thankfully those impacted remain asymptomatic or with mild symptoms, but as an organisation the health of all of our riders and staff is our main priority and we are now focused on safely transporting them to areas where they are most comfortable to conduct a period of quarantine.

“We wish the RCS and the rest of the peloton a successful finish to this year’s edition of the Giro d’Italia and we look forward to returning in 2021.”

Serge Pauwels calls time on 15-year career

Pauwels' CCC Team sent me this:

Serge Pauwels will call time on his career as a professional cyclist at the end of the season after 15 years at the top level of the sport, the last two of which were with CCC Team.

Serge Pauwels

Serge Pauwels descending in the 2019 Tour de France. Sirotti photo

Pauwels was sidelined due to a non-Covid viral infection as the 2020 season recommenced in August, following which a mild case of myocarditis was detected during his recovery period. Having now recovered from both, Pauwels has made the decision to retire from racing as the end of the 2020 season draws near.

Pauwels, whose career highlights include a stage win and the General Classification win at the 2017 Tour de Yorkshire and 13 Grand Tour participations, is excited for the next chapter.

“I have had an amazing career spanning the past 15 years and when I look back, I have nothing but good memories of my time as a professional cyclist. There are few people who can say they love their job and cycling has been much more than that for me, it really is a passion and I’m looking forward to staying involved in the cycling industry following my retirement. After tests revealed a suspicion of myocarditis, I’ve spent the last few months resting which has given me the time to decide what I want to do moving forward. I’m happy to have now been given the green light from a health perspective but I’m almost 37-years-old and I feel this is a good moment to call time on my career. If I was in the early years of my career it would be a different story but I can look back now and say that I have achieved everything I wanted to so, I think this is the right time to retire. I have my family to think about and I can’t wait to spend more time with them, as I have been able to since the interruption in the season back in March,” Pauwels said.

“I’m not sad. I’m not the kind of rider who needs one last lap of the Champs-Elysées or anything like that. I’m more excited to look ahead and see what the future holds. I want to thank everyone who has played a role in my career, from my teammates to the staff, and my family and friends. It really has been an unforgettable ride and I feel lucky to be stepping away on my own terms.”

Although Pauwels has been given the green light to resume a normal training load, a return to racing at this time in the season is not possible, Chief Medical Officer Dr. Max Testa explained.

“Serge Pauwels was initially sidelined with a non-Covid viral infection back in August. Further testing revealed a myocarditis, a non-ischemic inflammatory heart muscle disease, which requires rest to heal on its own. So, Serge has spent the last few months resting and just going on coffee rides. Serge underwent follow up tests last week which fortunately indicated that the myocarditis has healed, in which case a return to training and racing would be on the cards,” Dr. Testa said.

“Unfortunately, with very few races left in the season, Serge simply won’t have the time to train and build up to race-ready form before the final Classics or the Vuelta a España. It’s a shame that Serge cannot celebrate his career one last time on the road but the most important thing is that his recovery was successful.”

Young Italian duo to join Mitchelton-Scott ranks in 2021

The team sent me this:

Mitchelton-SCOTT has signed young Italian duo Arianna Fidanza and Kevin Colleoni to join their women’s and men’s teams for the next two seasons.

25-year-old Fidanza will join the Australian outfit from Lotto-Soudal and will add youthful talent to the team’s Classics line-up as she continues her progression in the women’s peloton.

The contract of 20-year-old Colleoni, who finished third at this year’s Baby Giro, was acquired by mutual agreement with Androni Giocattoli Sidermac following an impressive and consistent 2020 season.

Arianna Fidanza:
“I am really happy to join this team because it’s for sure a professional team, it was always a dream for me since I started to race with the elite women and I am sure I can improve with this team in the next two years.

“I really like the Classics; I like the weather cold, the rain and the terrain so they are my favourite races. For me it would be a dream to win a Classics race but I also would like to help the team for victories too.”

Martin Vestby – Women’s Sport Director:
“I have seen Arianna race quite a lot in the last couple of years and within the team she is currently, she has stood out a bit to be up there in the mix. She is a fairly young rider but she has had nice progress and her qualities are something we would like to strengthen and develop.

“She is a rider we see will fit well into our Classics team, she is fairly quick and she can do some climbing as well so a bit of an all-rounder in those type of races.

“She will also be a bit of a spark in the team with some young enthusiasm coming in. It’ll be a step up but I expect her to be eager and hungry.”

Kevin Colleoni:
“Stepping up to the WorldTour for me is the dream of a lifetime and I still don't believe yet.

“I know that Mitchelton-SCOTT is a one of the best teams in the world, with the best pro riders, that until now I could only see on television. I think it is the best choice for my professional and personal growth.

“My goals for the next years are, firstly, to get as much experience as possible, learn from the riders and the all staff of the team and try to improve more and more myself whilst doing the best for the team.”

Matt White – Men’s Head Sport Director:
“Kevin is a guy we have had our eyes on during the season, he is coming up in a group of very talented Italians and his result at the Baby Giro and his consistency are obviously highlights of his credentials of 2020.

“He is young and talented and it’s now our responsibility to continue his development into the seniors ranks. We’re looking forward to working with Kevin for many years to come.”

Arianna Fidanza
Date of Birth: 6 January 1995 (25)
Nationality: Italian
Joins Mitchelton-SCOTT: 2021
New Contract: 2021-2022

- 1st 2019 Tour of Taiyuan
- 6th 2020 GP de Plouay
- 5th 2019 National Championships Road Race – Italy

Kevin Colleoni
Date of Birth: 11 November 1999 (20)
Nationality: Italian
Joins Mitchelton-SCOTT: 2021
New Contract: 2021-2022

- 3rd 2020 Giro Ciclistico d’Italia U23 – Overall
- 2nd 2020 Giro Ciclistico d’Italia U23 – Stage 4 & 7
- 8th 2019 & 9th 2020 Il Piccolo Lombardia

Parent company shutters Bike magazine

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News sent me this:

CARLSBAD, Calif. (BRAIN) — A360 Media, which acquired Bike magazine last year, is “pausing” the mountain bike magazine and its digital publications indefinitely. A360 Media (called Active Media Inc. until last week) notified Bike editorial and sales staffers Friday afternoon that they were being furloughed.

On Friday A360 Media also furloughed staff at its Snowboarder and Surfer magazines, as well as support staff at Adventure Sports Network, the California-based division that contains the action sports titles. ASN's remaining Powder magazine staff will be furloughed Nov. 20. The Bike, Powder, and Surfer titles are being paused, while ASN's Snowboarder and Transworld Skateboarding titles will continue as digital properties to support the Dew Tour, an ASN-owned skate and surf competition series.

Sources said Bike operations are being shut down immediately and it was unlikely any of the "paused" titles will resume. They also said the company is not interested in selling the titles. The initial furloughs announced last Friday are effective this Friday, Oct. 9. The company is covering furloughed employees' health insurance through the end of the year, sources said.

Bike had three full-time editors and one full-time sale representative, in addition to contract and freelance writers and photographers. The magazine planned to publish four print issues in 2021, including its popular “Bible of Bike” special edition. The editorial staff was set to begin production of the next Bible this week in Nevada when the furloughs were announced.

A360 has not commented on the closure and employees told BRAIN they are not authorized to talk about it. The move comes in the same year as the closure of Dirt Rag, another mountain bike title that dates to the 1990s.

You can read the entire article here.

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