Saturday, December 31, 2011

Wiggins says yellow, green double not unrealistic for 2012 Tour


Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish at the 2011 Vuelta a España, stage 2. Photo: Graham Watson |www.grahamwatson.com (file)
Bradley Wiggins says it’s not impossible that Team Sky can aim for both the yellow and green jerseys during next year’s Tour de France.
With the arrival of world champion Mark Cavendish to Team Sky, Wiggins says the pair has a unique opportunity to take aim for two of cycling’s most prestigious jerseys.
“We have an opportunity to do something special in the Tour,” Wiggins told Sky TV. “(Aiming for green and yellow) that’s what makes teams great, when you try to achieve things. Having a challenge like that — people will say they don’t have a chance, they’re being greedy — but let’s wait and see.”
Cavendish won his first green jersey during last year’s Tour and will be the odd’s on favorite to repeat in 2012.
Wiggins, meanwhile, takes confidence out of a Tour route that includes nearly 100km of time trials and only three summit finishes.
Emboldened by his third overall in last year’s Vuelta a España, Wiggins believes he has a good chance to reach the final Tour podium and isn’t discounting a shot at overall victory.
Team Sky management says that having Cavendish on the team will not be a negative for Wiggins’ GC aspirations and even suggest that having the team work for Cavendish on the flats will only help keep Wiggins in a better position inside the peloton.
“They are close, they do get on, but like anyone, they do have their moments,” Team Sky principal David Brailsford said of his two leading stars. “They’ve known each other a long time.”
The two-time individual pursuit Olympic champion has already said he will not race on the track during this year’s London Games, instead choosing to take a shot at a medal in the individual time trial event.
Wiggins crashed out of last year’s Tour in the seventh stage with a broken clavicle in what was his best form of his career. He even suggested that the crash might have had a silver lining.
“Things can go too easy sometimes,” Wiggins said. “It happened for a reason. I have dealt with it and moved on. Life goes on.”
Article Source: VeloNews.com

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tips for Riding in the Winter

By Michelle Valenti
 
For cyclists living in warm climates, riding through winter requires little more than slight alterations to your workout schedule. Most of the country, however, has to contend with freezing temperatures, snow-packed roads and icy sidewalks. While some cyclists seek refuge on the indoor trainer, others take pride in logging workouts in extreme conditions. You don’t have to be hardcore, however, to ride in winter; you just have to be prepared. Here’s how to prep your bike and your body for the elements.
 
Your Bike
In order to ride in snow you need a bike that can handle the terrain. With more cyclists embracing the challenge, it’s easier than ever to modify your ride…or buy a bike that’s ready for a little beating.
 
Ron Kennedy, a year-round commuter in Fort Collins, Colorado, rides a Trek 7500 hybrid that he calls his “beater bike,” in other words; it can take quite a beating. “The only time it ever gets ridden is when the weather is bad,” he says.
 
In addition to a hybrid you could consider a cyclocross bike, a mountain bike or an all-terrain ride.  
 
If you can’t find space in your garage—or your budget—you’ll want to sup up your current ride. Here are a few things you can do to help your bike battle the winter:
 
1.       Swap out your skinny tires for a wider set with more tread.
2.       Let some air out of the tires for better traction.
3.       Consider buying an extra set of winter tires with studs.
4.       Use cold-weather chain lube
5.       Wipe down your bike and drivetrain after every ride.
 
Your Body
Now that your bike is ready for the elements, it’s time to suit up. The key is to stay warm…but not too warm.
 
“It’s all about the layers,” says Kennedy, who starts with an Under Armour base layer and a long sleeve jersey. At 30 degrees and above he adds a soft shell breathable jacket. And for every 10 degrees after that he adds another layer.
 
“Below zero it becomes hard to stay warm,” he says. That’s when “it really tests your commitment.” He recommends a Balaclava and ski goggles since you don’t want any skin exposed to extreme cold.
 
Gale Bernhardt, USA Cycling-certified coach and fellow year-round Colorado cyclist says “Fingers and toes are a big deal,” noting that she brings chemical heaters (like the ones used by skiers) on every winter ride.
 
Additionally, you should have some kind of over- or under-the-helmet head covering, and warm socks or winter shoes.
 
Your Safety
The third and most important element to winter riding is safety.
 
“Riding in slick conditions becomes more like mountain biking,” Bernhardt says. “On a road bike [in good conditions] you can get comfortable; in winter you have to be more aware of body position, and you have to work harder and move around more on the bike to keep your wheels in contact with the ground.”
 
Bernhardt, who is used to riding in the ever changing conditions of Colorado, points out that a dry spot in the morning can easily turn into a slick spot in the afternoon. “Keep your eyes open and don’t go around blind corners too fast,” she warns.
 
It’s not a matter of “if” but “when” Kennedy says. “When you hit ice, make sure your weight is centered. Don’t turn; your momentum will carry you through it.”
 
Not only are you less stable on winter roads, the cars around you are too.
 
Bernhardt sticks to mountain biking trails rather than deal with icy streets in winter and Kennedy suggests sticking to off-road paths and even sidewalks on the really bad days.
 
Either way, good lighting (up front and behind) is essential, not only for you to see where you’re going but for cars to see you. Kennedy uses a DiNotte taillight with 200 lumens. “It is extremely bright, and expensive, but worth the cost.”
 
The good news is, like most bike rides, once you gear up and get out there you’ll be hooked; and you may never want to spin on the indoor trainer again.
 
Michelle Valenti is a senior editor at Active.com. She is particularly fond of mountain biking and San Diego winters.


Article Source: USAcycling.org

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Holidays!!

Velo Wrench Bike Shop Would Like To Wish You And Your Family A Very Safe And Happy Holidays!! 


Thursday, December 22, 2011

From the pages of Velo: The 2011 Velo Awards — Most Dramatic Day of Racing


Editor’s note: VeloNews.com is presenting selections from the January 2012 edition ofVelo, the magazine’s 24th annual awards issue. It’s only a sampler — so if you want the full scoop, pick up a copy of the January 2012 edition of Velo.
2011 Velo Awards, Most Dramatic Day of Racing
The contenders threw down with a vengeance on the ascent of L'Alpe d'Huez.
The final summit finish of this year’s Tour, at L’Alpe d’Huez, delivered what the Tourmalet summit finish failed to deliver in 2010 — drama and suspense.
Alberto Contador’s kamikaze attack just 16km into the stage set in motion a sequence of events that involved Cadel Evans’ mechanical (and subsequent desperate chase); yellow jersey Thomas Voeckler’s stubborn attempt to bridge across alone to Contador and Andy Schleck; and a final showdown on the Alpe, where the stage win, the race lead and the overall win were up in the air.
With the group of GC favorites back together at the base of the Alpe, Contador again attacked, drawing out Euskaltel’s Samuel Sanchez and Voeckler’s faithful Europcar lieutenant Pierre Rolland, and putting Voeckler into trouble.
An inspired Contador hit the climb with aggression — he even reached out and punched a jeering fan — but the defending Tour champ’s bid for a stage win ultimately fell short when he was caught 2km from the line.
A crafty Rolland went on to take the stage win and the best young rider’s jersey. Behind, Evans and the Schleck brothers attacked each other repeatedly, but finished on the same time, with Voeckler trailing in 2:25 back.
Schleck took yellow from Voeckler, but with just a 57-second lead on Evans heading into the Grenoble time trial, the likelihood that the Leopard-Trek rider could win the Tour had dropped dramatically.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

RadioShack-Nissan-Trek Announces Lineup For 2012

Fränk and Andy Schleck join
Andreas Klöden and Chris Horner
as Johan Bruyneel's latest
Tour de France contenders.
Photo (AFP (file)

The powerhouse RadioShack-Nissan-Trek squad has designs on victories in classics and grand tours as it looks forward to the 2012 season.
The team announced its 30-rider roster for 2012 on Monday.
Bringing the Leopard-Trek and RadioShack squads together left general manager Johan Bruyneel with 42 riders — 12 over the limit for a WorldTour team — and he said that deciding who stayed and who didn’t “was a tougher task that I’ve ever experienced.”
With the team down to fighting weight Bruyneel is looking forward to the Tour de France, where Andy and Fränk Schleck, Andreas Klöden and Chris Horner give him more than one card to play.
“It’s too early to decide the complete Tour de France team, but I know we’ll have numerous riders who can compete for the top podium step in Paris,” he said. “Certainly Andy has come the closest, as he has finished second the past three years. I’m excited to work with him and Fränk, two talented and successful riders.”
Andy Schleck said he had felt “a bit unsure” about how things would play out under the new management structure but now thinks Bruyneel will help make him a stronger grand-tour contender.
“(I)t’s very clear that having him lead this team is in my best interests, as well as in those of the team,” Andy Schleck said. ” He’ll help me build upon my strengths and improve my weak areas.”
Brother Fränk says the depth of the squad will be its strength in 2012.
“We have riders that can perform in the mountains, on the flats, in the sprints, in time trials,” he said. “Our strength does not lie in any one individual, but rather the collective team.”
Klöden, a two-time Tour de France runner-up, concurred.
“I have been on teams with other great riders so this situation is not new for me. If the Schlecks have the best opportunity to win the Tour, I will fully support them. If there is an opportunity for me and Johan decides that it gives the team the best chance to win, I will be ready for the challenge.”
As for Horner, the 2011 Amgen Tour of California champion is ready to race after a season of highs and lows.
“Certainly the crash at the Tour was the lowest point, but I also had one of my career highlights when I won the Amgen Tour of California. That was a very important race not only for me, but also our sponsors and I imagine with our strong American ties that the goal remains the same in 2012,” he said.
“I may be 40 years old, but I believe I have the perfect combination to achieve top results — the motivation of a neo-pro combined with the experiences of a seasoned rider.”
When it comes to the one-day races, Fabian Cancellara will be the team’s undisputable captain. The four-time world time trial champion will aim for victory in his favorite races, the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.
“I’m a rider that puts a lot of expectations on myself to win. So it was tough for me last year when I didn’t win Flanders or Roubaix. Those experiences have made me even more motivated and stronger, both physically and mentally,” he said.
Backing him up will be the likes of Robert Wagner, Joost Posthuma, Hayden Roulston and Gregory Rast.
“And in the car we’ll have Dirk Demol, who was a Paris-Roubaix winner himself. The classics are still a few months away, but I have no reason not to be confident,” added Cancellara.
The team has a pair of preseason training camps scheduled — the first this month in Calpe, Spain, and the second in January on the Spanish island of Mallorca. RadioShack-Nissan’s first race will be the Santos Tour Down Under January 15-22 in Adelaide, Australia.

RadioShack-Nissan-Trek for 2012

  • Jan Bakelants (BEL)
  • Daniele Bennati (ITA)
  • George Bennett (NZL)
  • Matthew Busche (USA)
  • Fabian Cancellara (SUI)
  • Laurent Didier (LUX)
  • Jakob Fuglsang (DEN)
  • Tony Gallopin (FRA)
  • Linus Gerdemann (GER)
  • Ben Hermans (BEL)
  • Chris Horner (USA)
  • Markel Irizar (ESP)
  • Ben King (USA)
  • Andreas Klöden (GER)
  • Tiago Machado (POR)
  • Maxime Monfort (BEL)
  • Giacomo Nizzolo (ITA)
  • Nelson Oliveira (POR)
  • Yaroslav Popovych (UKR)
  • Joost Posthuma (NED)
  • Gregory Rast (SUI)
  • Thomas Rohregger (AUT)
  • Hayden Roulston (NZL)
  • Andy Schleck (LUX)
  • Fränk Schleck (LUX)
  • Jesse Sergent (NZL)
  • Jens Voigt (GER)
  • Robert Wagner (GER)
  • Oliver Zaugg (SUI)
  • Haimar Zubeldia (ESP)
  • Staff
  • General manager: Johan Bruyneel
  • Team directors: Kim Andersen, José Azevedo, Dirk Demol, Alain Gallopin, Luca Guercilena and Lars Michaelsen
  • Press officers: Philippe Maertens and Tim Vanderjeugd
Article Source: VeloNews.Com

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sarah Hammer wins women’s omnium at 2011-12 UCI Track World Cup stop in Cali, Colombia

Sarah Hammer smiles after
winning the scratch race at the
Alcides  Nieto Patino velodrome
in Cali, Colombia.
Photo: Luis Robayo | AFP
American Sarah Hammer won a pair of medals last week during the second round of the UCI Track World Cup in Cali, Colombia.
Hammer took gold in the women’s omnium, finishing no lower than fourth in the six races and tallying 14 points to defeat Tara Whitten (CAN) and Laura Trott (GBR), who finished one-two at the 2011 world championship.
Whitten took the runner-up finish with 28 points while Trott was third with 29.
The contest between Hammer and Whitten was close until the fifth event, the scratch race, which Hammer won while Whitten finished 14th.
Hammer is an automatic qualifier for nomination to the track cycling Olympic Long Team, to be announced December 15.
Earlier in the week Hammer won a bronze with teammates Lauren Tamayo, Dotsie Bausch and Jennie Reed in the team pursuit. The trio finished third in the morning’s qualifying with a 3:26.027, just missing the gold-medal round. They bounced back in the evening session, posting a 3:22.090 to win the bronze over Lithuania.
“While the Cali velodrome is covered, it’s still open air and the wind conditions were challenging for the qualifying round,” said Benjamin Sharp, USA Cycling’s endurance programs director. “The final, the next night, was much quicker and we were able to capitalize on that. It’s too bad that our qualifying round wasn’t better as the final with Great Britain would have been very competitive.”
The long-team qualifying standard for the women’s team pursuit is 3:21.575 and Hammer, Tamayo and Bausch were a half second off the mark in the final. No riders have qualified to be automatically nominated to the long team in the team pursuit.
The third round of the 2011-12 UCI Track World Cup is set for January 13-15 in Beijing. USA Cycling will be running trials December 8-15 to decide who makes the team.

Article Source: VeloNews.Com