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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Monday, February 13, 2023

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2022 Tour de France | 2022 Giro d'Italia

You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. - Mae West


Tour de France: 2021

Bill & Carol McGann's book The Story of the Tour de France, 2021: The Little Cannibal Dominates is available in both Kindle eBook & audiobook versions. To get your copy, just click on the Amazon link on the right

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Tour of Oman stage two team reports

We posted the race organizer's report with the results.

Here's the report from third-place Diego Ulissi's UAE Team Emirates:

Diego Ulissi delivered a strong punchy sprint to take 3rd place on stage 2 of the Tour of Oman from Muscat (Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex) to Qurayyat (174km).

The Italian veteran timed his sprint well on the uphill kick to the line but was outdone by the fast finishing Jesus Herrada (Cofidis). Davide Formolo rounded out the front group in 10th place, just 5” behind the winner.

Jesus Herrada enjoys his stage win.

Ulissi:”The last climb was very tough particularly the final kilometre. I was in a good position but my legs were not super so on balance I’m pleased with the result.Herrada had great legs and took a good win. We’re looking ahead now to fight again tomorrow.”

Ulissi now sits in 3rd place overall behind Herrada, just 6” off the race lead heading into Stage 3 tomorrow which also packs a hilltop finish from Al Khobar to Jabal Hatt (151.8km).

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Clásica de Almería team reports

We posted the report from third-place Jordi Meeus' Team Bora-hansgrohe with the results.

Here’s the report from second-place Arnaud De Lie’s Team Lotto Dstny:

Arnaud De Lie has taken another podium spot. In Roquetas de Mar, De Lie finished runner-up at the Clasica Almeria (UCI 1.Pro), which was decided in a bunch kick. With a predominantly flat final of the Spanish one-day race, a sprint was likely to be expected. The strong winds near the coast line still caused splits and nervousness but eventually a sizeable peloton would sprint for victory. Arnaud De Lie was well protected by his Lotto Dstny teammates but a chaotic final couple of kilometres forced De Lie to start his sprint from second row. De Lie still launched a powerful acceleration but eventually had to settle for second place.

Matteo Moschetti wins the Clasica Almeria

“A solid plan was made up before the race and we executed it almost to perfection”, says Arnaud De Lie. “We didn’t let us be surprised by the echelons and rode an attentive final. Everything went great until just under two kilometres from the line, where a small mistake caused us to lose each other a bit. The guys still did everything they could to get me to the front but I had to start my sprint from a bit too far. I still rode a strong sprint but need to settle for second place today. Of course it is a pity to just miss out on the win in a nice race such as Clasica Almeria but it is equally important to see that the team is there and again delivered a strong performance. We are a tight group with a nice atmosphere, which is also important towards the next weeks.”


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Team DSM reports on UAE Tour Women’s final stage

Here’s the team’s report:

Getting their season underway in perfect style, Team DSM’s Women’s program navigated a potentially dangerous day in the saddle, working excellently as a unit throughout the stage before setting up Charlotte Kool who powered to victory in exemplary fashion; taking the opening win of the race.

Charlotte Kool wins stage one of the UAE Tour Women,

A relatively calm stage saw Team DSM help to take control of the early breakaway, setting tempo at the front of the peloton and ensuring the catch was made. All eyes then turned to the finish with the team working well as a group together, moving sprint finisher Kool up towards the front. The final was hectic, with several twists and turns and some stop start action with Kool losing the wheel of last leadout rider Pfeiffer Georgi. Georgi expertly noticed the danger and stopped pulling, before Kool weaved her way through the bunch, threading the needle before unleashing a monstrous sprint to come around all the other sprints and take the win; her and Team DSM’s second of the week.

Speaking after the stage, a jubilant Kool said: “It was really hectic and I lost Pfeiffer a bit. I thought she went but she made a nice gap and waited because we didn’t want to launch Lorena. I knew I had to be patient and hope there would be a gap, which there was, and I just went full for it. We’ve really enjoyed it here, we are doing so well. We really are a team and we do it all together. I think yesterday we also showed with Esmée that we are capable of a lot of nice things. To finish it off like this is a dream.”

Team DSM coach Albert Timmer added: “I think we can be really happy with how the final went and how smartly we did things. Of course the finish wasn’t how we planned or a perfect leadout like the other day, but it was purely down to Pfeiffer and how she sees the race and then acts on it, so that was really impressive. I think a big shoutout to her, but also to the rest of the team too who looked after each other throughout not only today but the whole week. It’s been a crazy week for us and I’m really happy with how we started the season with two wins at the highest level and a top eight on GC, so I think we can be more than happy after a successful week.”

Stage four results:

119 kilometers raced at an average speed of 40.131 km/hr

  1. Charlotte Kool (Team DSM) 2hr 57min 55sec
  2. Chiara Consonni (UAE Team ADQ) s.t.
  3. Lorena Wiebes (Team SD Worx) s.t.

Final GC:

  1. Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) 12hr 8min 48sec
  2. Gaia Realini (Trek-Segafredo) @ 7sec
  3. Silvia Persico (UASE Team ADQ) @ 1min 18sec

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Casper Pedersen wins first edition of Figueira Champions Classic

Here’s the report from Pedersen’s Team Soudal Quick-Step:

Casper Pedersen became the latest rider to add his name to the Soudal Quick-Step winners’ circle, sprinting to victory out of a select group at the inaugural edition of the Figueira Champions Classic and racking up the team’s 899th win.

Casper Pedersen was first across the line.

The most important one-day event ever held in Portugal, Sunday’s race took the peloton along the stunning Atlantic coast over a hilly terrain that comprised a total of six classified climbs. The testing route proved to be too much for the sprinters, who were taken out of contention with more than 50 kilometers, leaving a depleted bunch in the mix in what was slowly but surely turning into a race of attrition.

Rémi Cavagna tried to take advantage of that, launching one of his trademark attacks from the distance, a move which only five other riders could follow. The “engine” of that newly-formed group, the Frenchman dug deep to help the sextet gain almost a minute over the chasers, putting in a spirited effort that saw him remain off the front until with 17 kilometers to go, when the combined effort of several teams brought him back.

After being caught, Cavagna continued to stay in the group together with teammates Casper Pedersen and Ilan Van Wilder, the latter countering some potentially dangerous attacks on the final climb and keeping things together. A strong headwind awaited the riders on the finishing straight, and Casper Pedersen timed his acceleration to perfection, hitting out with just 100 meters to go on the left side of the road – an acceleration that put his opponents into the rear-view and netted him his first victory since 2020.

“The course was difficult, and we knew that already from the training that we had here on Saturday, but each time we did the climbs I felt better and better and managed to remain in the front group. I didn’t expect to arrive with this select group and fight for victory, but I did it with the amazing support of Rémi and Ilan, they made it possible, and I am very grateful for that”, an elated Casper said after powering to the 899th victory in the history of Soudal Quick-Step.

“It’s just my third race with the team and we always raced for the win, which tells you a lot about the mentality everyone has. I love it here. The fact that this victory brought Soudal Quick-Step closer to another milestone just shows what a long, incredible and rich history this squad has. It’s incredible and I don’t have the words to describe it”, added Casper.

Results:

  1. Casper Pedersen (Soudal Quick-Step) 4hr 35min 54sec
  2. Rune Herregodts (Intermarche-Circus-Wanty) s.t.
  3. Marijn van den Berg (EF Education-EasyPost) s.t.
  4. Rui Costa (Intermarche-Circus-Wanty) s.t.
  5. Natnael Tesfatsion (Trek-Segafredo) s.t.

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