Montpellier (cyclingfans.com) - Astana's Alberto Contador, winner of the 2009 Tour de France, has won the prestigious Velo d'Or ("golden bicycle") award for the third time, tying the record of consecutive wins held by Lance Armstrong, overall a 5-time winner. The award is given annually to the rider considered to have performed best during the year. Created by the French Velo Magazine in 1992, the Velo d'Or winner is selected by an international panel of journalists who individually rank their top 3 candidates for the award. A point system results in an overall score for each rider that was named by journalists, the rider with the most overall points winning the award. Voting was closed on September 29 meaning that Philippe Gilbert's fantastic run in October was not considered.
Contador flew to Paris this afternoon and was presented his Velo d'Or trophy live on France TV's Stade2 program. During the program, Contador acknowledges that he will need to train hard on cobblestones before the 2010 Tour de France. When asked when he will make a decision on which team to race for next season, he indicated that a lot will happen in the next week. He presumably was referring to reports that he would soon meet with Astana officials to learn of their plans for him for 2010. Contador has long been linked to the Caisse d'Epargne, Garmin-Slipstream and Quick Step teams; Caisse is considered the front runner should the 2009 Tour champion decide to leave Astana. He became free to leave Astana when the team recently missed an administrative deadline related to its ProTour license registration for the 2010 season.
Alberto Contador wins the 2009 Velo d'Or (France 2)
France TV also played a video document with highlights of Contador's 2009 season, including his bonk at Paris-Nice while wearing the leader jersey, and his career which has included an inspiring return from a near fatal accident.
Alberto Contador, season and career highlights (France 2)
A Velo d'Or is also given annually to the top French rider as picked by a panel of French journalists. Track star Gregory Bauge won the 2009 award.
- GVA Trophy Cyclocross LIVE now (links below) as well as alternative here which opens in media player. (Thanks, Bernie)
- More live video streams (hopefully) for GVA Trophy Cyclocross Koppenberg as the race gets underway.
Sport.be live feed (Thanks, Jirka!)
(15:00 CET (10am U.S. Eastern))
Sporza live feed
(14:45 CET (9:45am U.S. Eastern))
- GVA Trophy Cyclocross Koppenberg (at Oudenaarde, Belgium) will be shown LIVE on Sporza, with coverage scheduled to start at 14:45 CET (9:45am U.S. Eastern). The Elite Men's race starts 15 minutes later, at 15:00 CET. Note that in Europe we have set our clocks back 1 hour last night, so New York is 5 hours behind Europe until next weekend. - Official Website -
GVA (Gazet van Antwerpen) Trophy Cyclocross - Koppenberg Oudenaarde Official Poster
- The 2010 Giro d'Italia Route was presented earlier today. You'll find stage details, profiles, and videos at the Giro official site here.
2010 Giro d'Italia map
March 30, 2010 update: 2010 Tour de France teams announced
The following question came up quite a bit recently when Lance Armstrong's new RadioShack team was awarded a 4-year ProTour license: Does this mean they are in the 2010 Tour de France?
The AFP and other sources this evening are reporting that 2009 Tour de France champion Alberto Contador may be able to break his contract with Astana after the team failed to meet a key administrative deadline. (Contador has one more year remaining with the team) They cite Article 22.214.171.124 of the UCI Cycling Regulations. This became an issue when Astana was among 5 teams (Caisse d'Epargne, Euskaltel, Saxo Bank, Sky are the others) not on a list the UCI published today of teams that have met requirements for a ProTour license. Note that the teams have until November 20 to meet these requirements. But the rules appear to allow individual riders an out when team requirements are not met by October 20.
Article 126.96.36.199 of the UCI Cycling Regulations:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
2010 USA Cycling National Racing Calendar announced
Colorado Springs, Colo. (October 16, 2009)—Featuring 27 events and nearly one million dollars in overall prize payouts, the 2010 National Racing Calendar (NRC) was announced today by USA Cycling. The NRC enters its 14th season as the nation’s premier Pro-Am men’s and women’s road cycling circuit and will visit 22 states from March through September, highlighting the United States’ best domestic teams and athletes.
- 2010 Tour de France Route Presentation coverage on Versus TV. More videos and full On Demand video of the event below.
- Official 2010 Tour de France route details, videos, etc. online here.
2010 Tour de France Official Poster
The design will also appear on T-shirts, postcards and other items.
- 2010 Tour de France: Watch interview with Tour director Christian Prudhomme.
- If you missed the 2010 Tour de France Route Presentation live, or want to see it again, you can watch it in its entirety (over one hour), from Jean-Etienne Amaury's opening remarks to Christian Prudhomme's unveiling of the route, at Cycling TV here.
2010 Tour de France Route Presentation
Paris-Tours: An early breakaway, late in the season. Will it go all the way?
Copyright © Pete Geyer/www.cyclingfans.com
- Sunday Update: Race is underway. Our 2009 Paris-Tours Live Online Coverage Guide is here.
- Tomorrow, Sunday, is the 103rd Paris-Tours and there will be live video streaming. The Elite Men's race will start in Chartres instead of the usual Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines outside Paris. It will finish in Tours, on the Avenue de Grammont for the last time due to the installation of tramway tracks next year. (There is also an Under-23 race. It starts in Bonneval and finishes in Tours.) Philippe Gilbert (Silence-Lotto) is defending champion. No American has ever reached the podium; Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Slipstream), winding down a breakout season, hopes to become the first American winner. We'll post our full 2009 Paris-Tours Live Online Coverage Guide before the start of live television coverage.
Paris-Tours Official Website
Race starts at: 11:15 CET (5:15am U.S. Eastern)
Live video webcast on Cycling TV starts at: 15:25 CET (9:25am U.S. Eastern)
Live streaming on Sporza: 15:25 CET (9:25am U.S. Eastern)
Live coverage on Eurosport France: 15:00 CET (9am U.S. Eastern)
Live coverage from other sources: Check back in the morning
- On now: Giro dell'Emilia delayed video coverage via Rai here. (Thanks, Bernie.)
- More Tour de Cycling - Saturday to come, including a first look at tomorrow's Paris-Tours LIVE coverage options.
- Flying overnight to Paris today, so next update late Thursday. -Pete
- The 2010 Tour de France Route Presentation is one week from today at the Palais des Congres in Paris. You will be able to watch the event LIVE on the internet, with audio commentary in English and French. Live streaming is scheduled to begin at 11:00 CET (5am U.S. Eastern), October 14. (We will of course have the links for you + more info as the event approaches.) The first half hour should include speeches from TDF organizer Amaury Sport Organization (A.S.O.) president Jean-Etienne Amaury and Tour director Christian Prudhomme, among others including officials from key regions visited during the 2010 Tour. This is a good time for a nap. Things will then get more interesting as breathtaking 12-minute video highlights of the 2009 Tour, set to music, remind everyone why we love this sport. The event concludes with what everyone is waiting for: the presentation of the 2010 Tour de France race route. Will there be a Team Time Trial? (Rumor is no.) How many Individual Time Trials and how long will they be? How many mountaintop finishes? With coastal winds already expected in week one, will organizers also throw in some cobblestone sections on the route from Rotterdam into Northern France to keep things interesting? (Rumor is yes. Remember Iban Mayo bouncing all over the road and crashing in 2004?) Among the riders expected in attendance in Paris are Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador. Also expected "in the house": Most everyone from team managers such as Marc Madiot and Johan Bruyneel to broadcasters Paul Sherwen, Phil Liggett and Bob Roll. Will UCI President Pat McQuaid show up or will his "bad France week" this week extend into next week? Will someone, perhaps a member of the French media, have sent bad boy and past regular attendee Alexandre Vinokourov an invitation in order to stir up trouble? Stay tuned. Not to be missed. -Pete
- The 2009 Paris-Tours is Sunday. Cycling.tv will have LIVE video of the race, free, to North America. Click here for more info. Cyclingfans.com will of course publish a complete Paris-Tours Live Online Coverage Guide before the race.
(Race report by Rock Racing) - Photos
Chihuahua, Mexico — Oscar Sevilla finished third and his Rock Racing teammate Francisco Mancebo was fourth in Sunday’s prologue time trial of the fourth edition of the Vuelta a Chihuahua.
Michael Rasmussen (Tecos-Trek) won the 2.6-mile (4.2 km) uphill race against the clock by a few hundredths of a second over Spaniard Daniel Moreno (Caisse d'Epargne). Sevilla was one second behind the two, while Mancebo was three seconds off the winning time of 8 minutes and 44 seconds.
Rasmussen, 35, returned to cycling in July after serving out a two-year suspension for lying about his whereabouts as they related to out-of-competition anti-doping tests.
Sevilla said he felt strong in the race that finished at the top of a second category climb. But if he could do it over again, he would surely do one thing differently.
“I made a little mistake in my gearing,” Sevilla said. “I could have used a 39 x 25 instead of a 39 x 23 for the last two turns (because it was so steep).”
Mancebo is the two-time defending champion of the seven-day, six-stage race. Last year, he beat (2009 UCI Americas Tour champion) Gregario Ladino by 34 seconds. In 2007, he bested Christian Meier and Antonio Aldape, who finished equal with him on time in the final classification.
Monday’s Stage 1 is a 73.4-mile (118.2 km) race from Chihuahua to Cuauhtémoc. The undulating stage includes three sprints and one categorized (Cat. 3) climb.
– RRC –