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Tour de France winner Chris Froome will begin his 2018 season in Spain next week despite the UCI investigation into him. He is under investigation for testing positive to excess asthma drug last year. Team Sky, who have ignored calls to ban the star, have confirmed Froome’s participation at the Ruta del Sol set to begin on February 14.

Froome was the overall and stage winner two years back at the event and will begin the new campaign in the five day race. He has continually insisted that he did no wrong despite failing the drugs test at the Vuelta aEspana last year.

Details About Riders Who Do Not Have Contracts For The Year 2015

The 2014 cycling season is going to come to an end soon. But there are numerous cyclists who have no contract for the 2015 cycling season. Grand Tour winners (stage winners as well as overall winners), one Olympic champion and 2010 Critérium du Dauphiné victor are some of the riders who are still looking for a cycling team for the next year. Here is a list of the riders still without contracts.

Chris Horner signed a last minute contract with the team Lampre-Merida in 2014 even though he had won the Vuelta a Espana in 2013. He has not yet been signed for the 2015 season because the 2014 season was not that good for him and he was expelled from Vuelta a Espana 2014 as well.

Samuel Sanchez’s contract with BMC racing is going to get over in 2014. There are rumors that he is going to sign a contract with Lampre-Merida. But nothing has been confirmed yet.

Jack Bobridge has been associated with three teams- Garmin-Sharp (2009-2011), Orica-GreenEdge (2012) and Blanco Pro Cycling team (2013). He really hopes he can participate in the 2015 WorldTour.

Alessandro Petacchi has been left out by the Omega Pharma-Quick Step team. It seems that he will become a part of the Italian team called Neri Sottoli.

The 2014 cycling season was disappointing for Gert Steegmans who was a part of Omega Pharma. He could sign a contract with Trek or Lotto NL.

Steve Morabito might get linked with the French team called FDJ for the year 2015.

Enrico Gasparotto’s contract with Astana team has not been renewed yet.

Francisco Ventoso had no space in the Movistar’s renewed contracts for 2015.

Janez Brajkovic has represented Astana team for three years and now he is interested to work with a team from America.

After Tour De France Nibali Comes Back

Coppa Bernocchi is the place where Vincenzo Nibali is preparing for the world championship. It is for the first time that Vincenzo Nibali is going to come to Coppa Bernocchi after his triumph in the Tour de France in July.

He is planning to focus on the World Championship. He wants to perform well for his team and take it forward. It was in the event of charity that he stated it. He has to goals to conquer the Tour and then the World. He surpassed other riders in Tour de France. He did take part in the criteriums as well but were not part of the races which were official. There are other riders also who can win the race. Going by the practicality it is believed that it is going to be impossible for Nibali to come with the same force since he is coming after a break and with much added responsibility.

His trainer of Astana however pointed out that he has not gained much weight it is mere kilo which he has gained. He should be well fit and suited to the event coming up at Ponferrada. When it comes to the race of one day Nibali always proves to be a tough challenge for his rival riders and this time too it is going to be the same according to his trainer. He is someone who causes tensions for others. Otherwise if he just has those one of the bad days he is still useful for the team. After the World Championship, Nibali has not yet disclosed his plans. He could go to the base if his sponsor in Kazakhastan for racing in the Tour Almaty. There is no doubt regarding his credibility but to keep up to the pressure is going to be the challenge.

Tom Danielson Claims Victory At The Tour of Utah

The American professional cyclist, Tom Danielson is part of the Team Garmin-Sharp and is considered to be one of the most talented cyclists of America. He has even been compared to Lance Armstrong for all the successes he has achieved in his cycling career till now.

The Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah is a very prestigious cycling event that takes place every year in the month of August and the most successful cyclists and teams participate in this seven-day event. This year the Tour of Utah took place from the 4th of August to 10th of August, 2014.

Tom Danielson was leading the tour in the overall standing because his performance in all the stages of the event was highly impressive. In the final stage of the tour Tom Danielson stood in the 5th position. However, his 5th position did nothing to hamper his 1st position in the overall standing.

Danielson must have experienced a déjà vu as he was again able to win the Tour of Utah like last year. It was due to his effort all throughout the week that he was able to claim victory of the title this year as well.

Tom said that he really wanted to cry after winning the tour because he felt elated as his hard work had paid off. He is going to remain the defending champion for the Tour of Utah next year in August as well.

Christopher Horner came second in the overall standing followed by Winner Anacona who came third.

Cadel Evans performance in the tour has also been quite good as he was able to win the last two stages (stage 6 and stage 7) of the event and prove his worth and talent.

We will just have to wait and watch whether the Danielson will be able to defend his title next year or not.

Tour France 2014 might topple WorldTour rankings

Tour France 2014 is quite expected to topple up the existing WorldTour rankings, redefining the names in both team and individual rankings.

The Tour France winner scores 200 points, with the points rewarded to top twenty cyclists overall on sliding scale. The stage triumphs are worth twenty points which makes each of days of the championship highly significant & prestigious for WorldTour UCI rankings. Often it is seen that the Tour France winner ends up winning the WorldTour UCI rankings.

Alberto Contador from Tinkoff-Saxo is currently leading individual ranks with a whooping 397 points given his excellent performances in spring stage-races. Nairo Quintana , the Giro winner from Movistar I in the 2nd place with a great 345 points while Rui Costa, the World road race champion from Lampre Merida is in the 3rd position with 268 points post his amazing overall triumph at Tour Suisse. Another Movistar rider Aljandro Valverde is in the 6th place with around 262 points. Interestingly, 2013 Tour France champion Chris Froome is on the 15th place with say 163 points.

In regards to team rankings, Omega Pharma is currently on the lead with a superb 796 points & thanks to Cavendis’s success at sprint stage might be a strong help for the team in defending its lead in World rankings. Movistar is in the 2nd place with a close 781 points while the 3rd one is Tinkoff-Saxo with a great 647 points. It’s Spain which seems to dominate rankings, followed by Colombia, Netherlands & Australia.

This year will mark the 101st season of Tour France. The race will commence on July 5 with stage 1 starting at Yorkshire of northern England from where it would take clockwise direction across France finalizing there by the 27th of July.

Tour could use mounted cameras on bikes

Riders taking part in the Tour de France could have cameras attached to their cycles to enhance the experience of the audience on television as it targets much wider viewing of the grandest even in world cycling to increase revenues from advertising and viewership.

Brian Cookson, the president of the International Cycling Union or the UCI believes there is a lot of room for innovation and that is something the sport must do in order to promote itself to a wider range of audience. He stated that they need to embrace innovation in order to be able to sell their sport, adding that they will be looking at a lot of technology incorporation such as cameras on bikes.

He mentioned that it would be great to have a bird’s eye, the same that Chris Froome had as he came up the Champs-Elysees to take the Tour de France last year.

Cookson, who became the president of the governing body of world cycling after a power struggle last September made the suggestions while at a seminar in Turkey and there have been more or less positive reactions from the world of cycling regarding the latest innovation from the UCI boss.

According to the 62 year British cycling enthusiast, the sport needs to be at the forefront of the cutting edge of technological evolution in order to enhance the experience of the television viewing audience, encouraging the masses to go on downhill mountain bike holidays in France and across Europe.

He mentioned that one of the biggest obstacles for any sport is the need to evolve while staying true to its essence but he thinks that having mounted cameras on bikes at the Tour de France will not be taken the wrong way just like the technology was accepted in Formula One so many years back and thinks slowly, other races will employ the strategy as well.

Rider Takes To Self-Suspension

Leading South African rider Brandon Stewart has suspended himself over serious doping row for 11 months with Saids. The news has been confirmed by Stewart’s squad FedGroup.

The SA rider’s self-suspension is surely one of the most shocking incidents nit only in cycling but also in the wider sports world.

Last October, the FedGroup rider was informed about testing positive with a banned drug post a routine testing regimen taken 4 months earlier. South Africa Cycling also warned him about the possibility of being banned from pro cycling.

However, Stewart’s sponsors defended him saying that the “positive” result is due to the cyclist’s consumption of a clinically needed testosterone treatment – that he had already reported to the institute whilst appealing for therapeutic-use exemption. The athletes who are clinically required to consume banned substances are allowed to contend provided they have an approved exemption from their national anti-drug bodies.

“We are on full support of the initiatives aimed to achieve a drug-free sports scenario in South Africa. Brandon’s unpleasant tryst with the testing has culminated into voluntary self-suspension that can bring in serious negative kicks for the sport as a whole”, stated Scott Field, the CEO of FedGroup.

As per the reports from Stewart’s squad, the rider consulted a physician a year back following severe depression and mood swing experience on which he was advised to up his reduced testosterone levels. He consulted Anique Coetzee, the exemption liaison officer from Saids and she recommended the Nebido testosterone treatment to him. Stewart then further applied online requesting for the needed exemption for the medication.

Coetzee assured Stewart in writing that-“whilst the response for the application is pending, he is allowed to take up the treatment & continue racing.”

After 2 months of the application, the rider received an e-mail stating that Saids had decline his application.

2014 Tour de France

Mark Cavendish, nicknamed the “Manx Missile” is known to be the fastest sprint cyclist of the world. With a victory of 25 Tour de France stages in his career of road cycling, the cyclist stands 3rd among the winners in the all time list of Tour de France. In the 2011 Queen’s Birthday Honours, an MBE was awarded to Mark, for his services to British Cycling.

With all the honours and popularity up his sleeves, the Great Britain’s Cyclist’s focus right now is on the Tour de France of 2014 that is coming to UK. Mark Cavendish feels, in his own words, “super excited” about the event. The first stage of the event is believed to finish in Harrogate, which is luckily the home town of the Cyclist’s mother. Mark believes this will surely give him a chance to sport the yellow jersey of the sport leader for the first time.

The fast cyclist’s excitement does not just end till the Tour de France of 2014 but he aspires to content in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janerio and will compete to win an Olympic Medal. Cavendish won two stages in the Tour of Britain this year (2013). This victory took the overall tally of the Mark Cavendish to 25. He won the stage 4, leaving behind Elia Viviani in Snowdonia’s Llanberis. After 3 days he took victory in stage 7, outsprinting Elia Viviani once again and finishing on Guildford High Street. However, although the cyclist does not rule out the possibility of competing for Great Britain and to the Olympic track team of the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games; he says, this would depend to a large extent on the harmony of his preparations with his road racing, probably reminding himself of his contract with Omega Pharma-Quick Step whose manager wants him to completely concentrate on the road.

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