Rally will let the road decide team’s Tour of Alberta leader

31 Aug

Rally Cycling is heading into the Tour of Alberta with an embarrassment of riches when it comes to riders with a potential for success in the general classification.

Recent Tour of Utah winner Rob Britton, who now calls Alberta home, is the obvious choice on paper to lead the team. The 31-year-old was flying in Utah and is coming off a brief rest following the Colorado Classic.

The US Continental team also features Evan Huffman, 27, who won a stage in Alberta last year and finished third overall. Huffman continued his momentum this season, winning the Tour of the Gila earlier this year and then adding two stage wins at the Tour of California.

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Sepp Kuss, 22, led the Tour of Utah after finishing second on the stage to Snowbasin and should find the Marmot Basin stage – with its steep finish – well-suited to his skills.

Matteo Dal-Cin, the 26-year-old Canadian road champion, is coming off a training injury he suffered before the Tour of Utah and will be freshly motivated for a top result in the first race in which he'll wear the maple leaf jersey.

That's a lot of options for a single team in a four-day race, but both Huffman and Dal-Cin indicated that team leadership would likely sort itself out on the road to Marmot Basin during stage 1.

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

Gillow letting her legs do the talking in bid for Worlds selection

31 Aug

Shara Gillow says that she will let her legs do the talking when it comes to fighting for a World Championships spot in Bergen at the end of this month. Gillow has enjoyed one of her best seasons to date but has suffered selection disappointment too many times to count her chickens just yet.

Gillow missed a spot in Australia's squad for last year's Olympic Games and the World Championships. In fact, the last time she earned selection for the gold and green team was the 2014 Commonwealth Games. She believes that the course is one that suits her capabilities, but the past has taught her not to pin her hopes on it.

"[The course] sounds really cool, and it seems that it would suit me, but the selection for the World Championships hasn't been made. I think that it is something that I never really want to get my hopes up too much for because I missed out on selection for the Olympics," Gillow told Cyclingnews. "There is often a lot of politics involved and red tape that I don't really like. I try to let my legs do the talking. I like to focus on the races with my team and doing really well. Whatever comes with selection is a bonus.

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"For the last couple of years I hardly had any UCI points and now I have got quite a few this year. I've been up there with the best in the one-day races, which are very similar to the World Championships course in terms of the terrain and the distance. It's something that I guess I know I can do really well on the course but you have to be selected for it, and I'm not one of the selectors."

If Gillow were to earn selection, it would top off what has been an extremely solid season for the 29-year-old. There have been no wins as yet, but there have been some close calls and a decent spring campaign, which brought top-10 finishes at Fleche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege, and fifth at La Course in July means that she is in the top 20 in the world rankings. After playing the domestique role more often than not in recent years with teammates such as Marianne Vos, Anna van der Breggen and Kasia Niewiadoma to look after, Gillow believes she has made a step forward in her performances this year.

"I feel like I can be up there and playing for the win. It's really nice because it's the first time with the team," she said. "It's like [the team has] believed that I can do it. I've always believed that I can go for the win in races and to get really good results, but it's really nice to have a team backing you and have trust that you can do this."

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

Holowesko-Citadel targeting sprints at Tour of Alberta

31 Aug

Defending Tour of Alberta champion Robin Carpenter may still be at home in Southern California recovering from a crash earlier this month at the Tour of Utah, but his Holowesko-Citadel team has a few more cards to play in the four-days race that starts Friday.

TJ Eisenhart will pick up the general classification responsibilities on the opening-day climb to Marmot Basin, team director Thomas Craven said Wednesday at the pre-race press conference, while Utah stage winners Ty Magner and John Murphy will target potential sprint finishes for the rest of the week.

"This was a big goal for Robin for the year to come back and try and defend the win for himself and for the team," Craven said. "We've been here four years, and last year was a big breakout for us. Finishing up with that we sort of carried the same momentum into this year, winning a lot of UCI events in the States and really preparing ourselves for the next steps."

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The team has had a tremendous July and August, with Carpenter winning the Cascade Cycling Classic before Murphy and Magner each took stage wins in the Tour of Utah. Eisenhart was a serious animator of the race in his home state, but his bold riding for the win ultimately cost him some general classifications spots as he finished just outside the top 10.

At the Colorado Classic, Murphy added another stage win, while Eisenhart, again aggressive and willing to roll the dice for a potential overall win, finished fourth after taking second on the hardest day in Breckenridge. Murphy said that despite missing Carpenter, the team is ready to add some more results to the season.

"We're disappointed not to have Robin here," Murphy said. "He's a huge asset for our team, but there are a fair few sprints after the mountain finish on the first day. The last three days could all end up in a sprint, so that's what we're focused on."

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com