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Sunday, April 17, 2005

Below is a guide to live internet coverage of Amstel Gold Race 2005.

Amstel Gold Race 2005
2001 winner Erik Dekker

Notes:  Rabobank's Michael Boogerd and Erik Dekker, both past winners, look to win their "home race".  Davide Rebellin of Gerolsteiner returns to defend his 2004 title.  Danilo Di Luca of Liquigas-Bianchi is in form after his recent overall victory in Tour of the Basque Country.  Alejandro Valverde of Iles Balears and Oscar Freire of Rabobank also look to be in the mix.  George Hincapie of Discovery Channel looks to build on his second place in last week's Paris-Roubaix.

Danilo Di Luca
Danilo Di Luca, recent winner of Tour of the Basque Country, rides for Liquigas-Bianchi this season
photos © 2005 Pete Geyer
Amstel Gold Race 2005, The Netherlands, April 17, ProTour

The "Race to the Beer"?

Live video coverage:


Live audio coverage:


(24-hour audio feed)
(4:35pm CET (10:35am U.S. EST))
(note: Eurosport's U.K. Amstel Gold Race coverage is NOT listed as live but you never know)

Check schedule

Live tickers:




Official site

Monday, April 11, 2005

By George, Tom wins again

Nothing much to say about Belgian Tom Boonen's win in Paris-Roubaix yesterday aside from how impressive it is especially for a 24-year old to win Flanders, then Roubaix one week later.  That he did it with the pressure of being the number one favorite makes it all the more remarkable.  Either Boonen doesn't feel pressure or he thrives on it.  He was quoted in today's l'Equipe saying that his goal is to make a name for himself far beyond the borders of Belgium and beyond the current world of cycling which he says needs to expand.  But can he help get bull riding kicked off of OLN TV in the U.S.?

American George Hincapie of Discovery Channel rode a great race, his best yet in Paris-Roubaix.  He had the misfortune of finally getting it all right just as Boonen has emerged.  Make no mistake, Hincapie was very disappointed to fall short of his goal of winning Paris-Roubaix.  His comments in l'Equipe make that very clear.  The team analyzed the options in the final kilometers, the feeling was that Boonen, Hincapie and Flecha were all cooked and that after a long day over the cobbles, George just might be able to beat Boonen in the sprint.  He did, afterall, beat Boonen in a group sprint at last year's race, nabbing 8th place.

But Hincapie and Discovery also seem happy to have been rewarded with a second place for their hard work.  Too often a top rider ends up with nothing in Paris-Roubaix, due to a flat or other incident near the end.  It was a great race yesterday, one of the great sporting events anywhere, and George Hincapie and Discovery Channel gave their many fans the biggest American Paris-Roubaix thrill to date.  We'll no doubt see plenty more of Boonen, Hincapie and Flecha battling it out at Paris-Roubaix in the next few years, not necessarily in that order.

Mont Ventoux battle just two months away

Mont Ventoux seen from Bedoin
Mont Ventoux seen from Bédoin

The Dauphiné Libéré stage race is returning to Mont Ventoux, the "Giant of Provence," in June.  (Last year they held a time trial up the climb.)  Stage 4 will begin in Tournon-sur-Rhône and finish on Ventoux.   Lance Armstrong has never won on Ventoux.  How deep would he be willing to go to win there in June?  Jan Ullrich is reportedly considering riding the Dauphiné instead of the Tour of Switzerland and 2004 champion Iban Mayo may show up after initially indicating he might skip it this year.

Armstrong press conference LIVE on OLN

If you have OLN TV, mark your calendars:  OLN will be broadcasting Lance Armstrong's pre-Tour de Georgia press conference LIVE, Monday, April 18, 2:30-3pm EST.  Check your local schedules.

Lance's upcoming announcement has been termed "very important".  Will he announce that he will retire this season?  Announce he is riding the Giro in May?  Announce the creation of a new, major U.S. bike race?  Announce the end of bull riding on OLN TV?

Peña out of action for six weeks

What terrible luck for former USPS and current Phonak rider, Colombian Victor Hugo Peña.  He crashed in the neutral zone before the official start of Paris-Roubaix, then got back on his bike to race for 20km before finally pulling out of the race.  He is now in the hospital for a few days and is expected to be out of action for six weeks.

If you want to send VHP best wishes for a speedy recovery, try the Phonak team site:

We've added VHP wallpaper to the wallpaper section, the first in a series of "Pro Bike Wallpapers".  Disc wheels on time trial bikes make a great spot to place short-cuts on your desktop.

Close-up of Victor Hugo Pena in action at Paris-Nice

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Below is a guide to live internet coverage of Paris-Roubaix 2005.

Photos of the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team have been posted at the Paceline.  (link at left)  Check out George Hincapie's new audio Oakleys and the team bus entering the start area over the cobbles in Compiegne.  The "Cable Guys" were so bundled up (it was cold and windy) that they almost looked like astronauts.  We will be posting more photos of yesterday's teams presentation right here (Zabel, Boonen, the crowds of cycling fans and more), including a little audio to give you a sense of the atmosphere.

Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team, Paris Roubaix 2005
Members of the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team are feeling a lot of pressure to get a big result this year

Paris-Roubaix 2005

Notes:  Tom Boonen got the only 5-star rating in sports daily l'Equipe this morning.  Peter Van Petegem got the only 4-star rating.  Riders with l'Equipe 3-star ratings for this year's race:  defending champion Magnus Backstedt, Cancellara, Flecha, Hincapie, Mattan, O'Grady, Wesemann.

George Hincapie
Discovery Channel's George Hincapie has a lot of fans behind him

Magnus Backstedt
Defending champion Magnus Backstedt was in a good mood at yesterday's teams presentation; he is feeling confident.

Paris-Roubaix 2005 , France, April 10, ProTour
Live video coverage:


Live audio coverage:


(24-hour audio feed)
(5pm CET (11am U.S. EST))
(note: Eurosport's Paris-Roubaix coverage is NOT live because France Television has the rights to the live broadcast)

Check schedule

Live tickers:


Official site ticker


Daily Peloton

Official site

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