Wrapping up the Canadian WorldTour races

September 10, 2018

Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) brought the curtain down on the Canadian WorldTour races on Sunday with a win in the GP Montreal. The victory cemented his ‘double’ after winning the GP Quebec last week.

 The two races also saw the end of Simon Gerrans’ WorldTour career. The Australian was the last rider to win the Canadian double, back in 2014, and we discuss his career and extensive palmares, as well as Matthews’, who exclusively talks to Cyclingnews about how he modeled his recent performances on Gerrans’ 2014 displays.

 We also discuss the relevance and stature of the Canadian races – both in terms of their importance to the North American scene but also the global calendar. Hosted by Daniel Benson and Kirsten Frattini, we also debate the need for a women’s WorldTour race in Canada after the UCI president David Lappartient visited Montreal and issued part of his blue print to improve women’s cycling.

 This podcast brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

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Quebec preview and Van Avermaet exclusive interview

September 7, 2018

Ahead of the Grand Prix Cycliste de Quebec the Cyclingnews team sit down and preview the first of two Canadian WorldTour races of the season. We look at the main favourites, discuss who has the form, motivation and the support to triumph that has seen the likes of Peter Sagan and Simon Gerrans both triumph on in the past.

 We also bring you an exclusive interview with Olympic road champion Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing0). The Belgian rider talks about how the new CCC team will be built around him in 2019, and the greater responsibility he is likely to shoulder after BMC Racing saw most, if not all, of their stage racing talent leave. Van Avermaet talks about the loss of several teammates but also the signing of several new faces who will be expected to help him. The 33-year-old also talks about the Canadian races, his season as a whole, and the World Championships, where he hopes to have a free role.

This podcast is brought to you by our friends at Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

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 Prendas Ciclismo have some unique and fantastic new lines. With new retro jerseys like the iconic Peugeot BP, La Vie Claire and Mapei, there's also a brand new capsule collection celebrating old races like the Baracchi Trophy and Bordeaux Paris. To enjoy great quality clothing without a premium price tag, visit Prendas Ciclismo online at prendas.co.uk.

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Michael Matthews – Exclusive podcast interview

September 6, 2018

Heartbreak at missing the Worlds, a year of hard knocks and his love for the bike

 We’re in Canada, ahead of the two World Tour races and we’ll be bringing you several podcasts over the coming days. First up, we have an exclusive interview with Michael Matthews from Team Sunweb.

 The Australian has had a difficult year beset by injury, illness and bad luck. We sat down with him in the centre of Quebec’s old town to talk about his season.

 Matthews provides a very personal, honest and open account about his mental and physical battles during his lowest points of the year, and his heartbreak at missing the selection for the Worlds team, where he was willing to sacrifice everything for his friend and national teammate, Richie Porte.

 The former Tour de France green jersey winner shares his setbacks, which included riding with the wrong saddle height for the majority of the season, how he shut down after the disappointment of abandoning the Tour and how those closest to him helped him rediscover his passion and love for the bike.

 What also comes across is how level headed and he is, and that despite his knocks this season he’s still hungry to win again. He starts the Canadian races as one of the main favourities, and we talk about the remaining goals he has for the year.

This podcast is brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

 Sponsor message

Prendas Ciclismo have some unique and fantastic new lines.

With new retro jerseys like the iconic Peugeot BP, La Vie Claire and Mapei, there's also a brand new capsule collection celebrating old races like the Baracchi Trophy and Bordeaux Paris.

To enjoy great quality clothing without a premium price tag, visit Prendas Ciclismo online at prendas.co.uk

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Vuelta analysis, Aqua Blue fallout and the future for Mark Cavendish

September 1, 2018

On the latest episode of the Cyclingnews podcast, brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville, we look back at the first six stages of the Vuelta a Espana and hear from Richie Porte and former race leader Michal Kwiatkowski.

 Ed Pickering and Daniel Benson dissect the first six stages and the GC battle as the race heads towards Sunday’s first major mountain test, while the team from Cyclingnews and Procycling also analyze the fallout from Aqua Blue’s demise, the latest on Mark Cavendish.

 It’s been a turbulent month for Aqua Blue. At the start of August they announced that they had bought Sniper Cycling, the parent company of Veranda’s Willems Crelan. Within minutes that press release was removed with Sniper denying a deal a had been done. A few days later Aqua Blue owner Rick Delaney told Cyclingnews that news will be out soon. He says it will be positive news but that for legal reasons he could not divulge more information. Then this Monday another press release lands and Aqua Blue announce that they are folding. We take an in depth look back at what happened, how a Pro Continental team could vanish after less than two years into the sport.

We also discuss the future for Mark Cavendish, who at the age of 33, has been diagnosed with Epstein Barr virus (EBV) for a second time. Cavendish is taking a break from competitive cycling but his return to the sport is somewhat uncertain with no new contract yet for 2018, and while he most certainly will have options, could this latest setback be the end for one of cycling’s most successful sprinters of all time?

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Vuelta a Espana preview featuring Sagan, Yates, Porte and York

August 24, 2018

On the latest episode of the Cyclingnews podcast – brought to you by our friends at Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville, the team of Philippa York, Patrick Fletcher and Daniel Benson preview the 2018 Vuelta a Espana.

 We hear from Richie Porte (BMC Racing), Simon Yates (Mitchelton Scott), and Peter Sagan (Bora hansgrohe), whilst also debating the chances for a number of the GC contenders.

 Porte arrives at the race with a minor illness but is leading BMC Racing in the final Grand Tour before the team disbands in the off-season. Can he keep a united ship or will riders put their personal ambitions above the team’s?

 Simon Yates is looking to improve on his Giro d’Italia, where despite winning stages and leading the race, he fell away in the final stages. As for the world road champion, he starts to the Vuelta looking to win a stage as he builds up for the a Worlds defefence later in the year.

 Nairo Quintana and Fabio Aru both head into the race with points to prove, with Vincenzo Nibali flying under the radar, despite his impressive Grand Tour palmares. Miguel Angel Lopez – third at the Giro d’Italia – also gets a mention, and there’s a detabe about whether Team Sky can mount another GC challenge despite the absence of both Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas.

 York and Fletcher then pinpoint the key stages and where the race will be won and lost, with York discussing the differences in style and tempo between the Vuelta, Giro d’Italia and Tour de France.

Sponsor message

Prendas Ciclismo have some unique and fantastic new lines.

With new retro jerseys like the iconic Peugeot BP, La Vie Claire and Mapei, there's also a brand new capsule collection celebrating old races like the Baracchi Trophy and Bordeaux Paris.

To enjoy great quality clothing without a premium price tag, visit Prendas Ciclismo online at prendas.co.uk

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Planning for the future: The Yates brothers and Mitchelton-Scott

August 21, 2018

After a couple of weeks away the Cyclingnews Podcast is back. This week’s episode features exclusive interviews with Matt White, and both Adam and Simon Yates.

 Recorded on the final rest-day at the Tour de France, and just after the news of the brothers' re-signing with Mitchelton Scott was announced, Cyclingnews editor Daniel Benson sat down with the two riders to talk about why they decided to stay with the Australian team, the steps that brought them to the WorldTour team in the first place and the next steps in their careers.

 With both riders set to take part in the Vuelta a Espana later this week, there's no better time to hear what they have to say.

 White opens up about the pressures of keeping two of his team's best assets, the allocation of budgets, and what it's like to break the bond when riders do decide to take up challenges on other teams.

 These interviews were recorded before the news of Caleb Ewan's move from Mitchelton Scott to Lotto Soudal was confirmed, but White and the Yates brothers also discuss the culture within Mitchelton Scott and its importance in relation to rider development and building a competitive team.

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Tour de France final analysis featuring Thomas, Froome and Dumoulin

August 2, 2018

It has been a few days since the 2018 Tour de France concluded and the Cyclingnews team are back home to record the final podcast relating this this year’s race.

The dust has finally settled, we’ve had a chance to decompress after a long three, and taken stock of the how the three-week race unfolded. As well as looking at the final week of racing, we also discuss where Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas go from here, both in terms of their hopes to lead Team Sky in the future, and as to whether they can return and win the Tour de France in 2019.

 Along with hearing from both Team Sky riders we also feature Tom Dumoulin and ponder what exactly the Dutchman needs to do in order to win the Tour de France. Does he need to build a stronger team around him, or is it case of simply concentrating on one Grand Tour per-season? He doesn’t have to join Team Sky…. does he?

 Along with analyzing the podium finishers, Daniel Benson, Patrick Fletcher and Procycling’s Ed Pickering also contemplate where the pure climbers – so irrelevant in the key points of this year’s GC battle – go from here. It’s another action packed podcast.

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Thomas comes through final mountain test after Roglic rises to third

July 27, 2018

Welcome to the Cyclingnews podcast, brought to you by Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

As the sun sets on the Tour’s 19th stage, between Lourdes and Laruns, so the ambitions of Geraint Thomas’s rivals are slowly sinking below the horizon. In one of the hardest stages of the 2018 Tour, crossing multiple climbs, the Welshman extended his overall advantage over second-placed Tom Dumoulin to two minutes and five seconds. With only a 31-kilometre time trial and the Paris sprint stage to come, it looks like Thomas will win his first Tour de France on Sunday.

LottoNL-Jumbo’s Primoz Roglic was the winner on the day. The Slovenian attacked on the descent of the final mountain of the Tour, the Col d’Aubisque, and flew to a 19-second advantage, overtaking defending champion Chris Froome in the overall standings to go into the final weekend third overall.

It was a dynamic day’s racing. Mikel Landa, Ilnur Zakarin and Romain Bardet, all in the top 10, attacked as early as the Col du Tourmalet with 100 kilometres to go. While Landa rose as high as second on the virtual general classification, Sky and LottoNL-Jumbo worked to close the gap. When the race came together again on the Aubisque, Roglic, his team-mate Kruijswijk and Tom Dumoulin all made attacks, but none shook off Thomas, though Froome was temporarily distanced. Over the top, it all came together before Roglic finally broke away.

 

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Tour de France: Quintana wins, Thomas takes control and Froome loses ground

July 25, 2018

Stage 17 of the Tour de France confirmed that Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) is now the clear favourite to win the overall title. On a short, sharp stage that started in Bagnères-de-Luchon, and crossed the Col de Peyresourde and Col de Val Louron Azet en route to the finish on the Col de Portet, Thomas matched nearly all his rivals and gained time on both Tom Dumoulin and Primoz Roglic.

His teammate and four-time Tour winner, Chris Froome, finished almost a minute behind the Welshman, while Nairo Quintana finally showed some form, attacking near the bottom of the final climb to win alone.

Thomas now leads Dumoulin by 1:59 and Froome is in third, 2:31 behind.

Elsewhere, Julian Alaphilippe scored points on both early climbs to all but secure the mountain classification, but green jersey Peter Sagan crashed at speed on a descent. He made it to the finish, and will continue in the race.

In this exclusive Cyclingnews podcast from the Tour de France, brought to you in association with Prendas CiclismoPinarello and Floyd's of Leadville, we hear from Thomas, while Ed Pickering and Daniel Benson analyse of the best days of racing at this year's Tour.

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Tour de France: Thomas’ predictions, Brailsford’s astonishing press conference

July 24, 2018

After the final Tour de France rest day on Monday, the race kicked back into gear with the first stage in the Pyrenees and a finish in Luchon. Julian Alaphilippe took the honours after Adam Yates crashed while leading, and the GC battle flickered but never burst into flames.

 Earlier in the stage, the race was neutralized after police were forced to use pepper spray on a group of protesters - with some of the chemicals reaching the riders and forcing a break in proceedings.

In this Tour de France podcast, brought to you in association with Prendas CiclismoPinarello and Floyd's of Leadville, Daniel Benson and Ed Pickering hear from Adam Yates, Geraint Thomas, Steven Kruijswijk, and Heinrich Haussler on the stage, and take a look ahead to Wednesday's decisive 65km mountain stage.

 We also wind the clock back 24 hours to Team Sky' press conference and play the recording from Dave Brailsford almost 10-minute long question and answers session. During the press conference, Brailsford was asked about Gianni Moscon - thrown off the race for punching a fellow competitor - the DCMS report and the hostile environment Team Sky have raced under during this year's Tour.

 Brailsford responded by saying, "It's interesting. We raced in Italy, and Chris' case was open when we were at the Tour of Italy, and the Italians were fantastic, to be fair to them. The Spanish, fantastic. It just seems to be a French thing.

 "It's like a French cultural thing really, isn't it? That's it. I'm not sure that they would have liked their football players spat at in Russia [at the World Cup -ed]. I'm sure that there would be a word or two about that. But it's OK to spit on us and our staff."

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