Momentous Women’s Herald Sun Tour victory for Chapman

31 Jan

World time trial champion Annemiek van Vleuten might have closed the inaugural Women's Herald Sun Tour by winning the second and final stage in her rainbow jersey, but the overall victory went to a previously unheralded Australian Brodie Chapman, racing for the national team.

As a race, the Sun Tour has always been one for providing opportunities to young and upcoming Australian talent and it is a philosophy now shared by both races. Chapman's stage 1 win and overall triumph is a testament to the faith and trust placed in local riders to animate the race. Chapman's short career thus far has been one of highs and lows, spread across multiple disciplines and full-time work, but has now been punctuated by a historic win.

The stage 2 time trial was just 1.6 kilometres on a stretch of road Chapman knows well, adjacent to the Yarra River in Melbourne. At that length, her 12-second advantage over Van Vleuten was logically too large a margin even for a world champion to chase down, and would ultimately prove so with Chapman doing more than enough to hold on for a momentous victory.

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"It does feel really good and I am glad I could pull it off for the team," said Chapman. "It would have been optimistic to really hold her off that much. She is the world time trial champion. My prerogative was to keep it tidy and stay safe which is what I did.

"There was a confidence that I could maintain that gap, some of that gap. I was nervous that I might be too cocky in the corners but I held it back a little bit just to make to the finish line.

"It is very satisfying to have your hard work and mental determination pay off. "

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

Blaak announces two-year extension with Boels Dolmans at team presentation – Gallery

31 Jan

Chantal Blaak, the current road world champion, announced that she has extended with Boels Dolmans for two more years, taking her contract through to the end of 2020. Former world champion Lizzie Deignan also revealed that she will target the UCI Road World Championships in Austria in September, among other bigger races.

The announcements were made while riders were on stage at the team's official presentation, which was shown via a live video feed on the team's Facebook page.

Director Danny Stam has also extended with the team for two more years.

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The full team roster was in attendance at the presentation as Blaak was joined by British road champion Deignan and Luxembourg champion Christine Majerus, Women’s WorldTour winner Anna van der Breggen, Karol-Ann Canuel, Amalie Dideriksen, Megan Guarnier, Amy Pieters, Jip van den Bos, Anna Plichta and Skylar Schneider.

"I'm super excited to be here because it is an excellent opportunity and I want to make the most of it," said newcomer Schneider, who got a call-up to the team after winning a stage at the Lotto Thüringen Ladies Tour in 2017. "I want to learn everything I can and help the team."

Schneider's compatriot Guarnier said that she is hoping to have a better season after recovering from injuries last February and again at the World Championships in September. "I started with a concussion and ended with a broken jaw," said Guarnier, who hopes to do well in the spring Classics and the Giro Rosa this year. "There was success in there. The team supported me and they were there for me. It was a good feeling - a family on the bike."

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

Silber Pro Cycling continue developing young Canadian talent

31 Jan

Canadian Continental team Silber Pro Cycling, known for developing young riders and graduating them to the higher ranks, have once again assembled a competitive team to race the UCI America Tour. The 14-rider team, directed by former racer Gord Fraser, added four new recruits and support five current Canadian national champions including junior road champion Charles-Étienne Chrétien and junior time trial champion Graydon Staples.

"I feel very fortunate to direct Silber Pro Cycling going into its fifth year as a UCI Continental team," Fraser said. "We have positioned ourselves as a top North American competitor while providing the very best Canadian talent a pathway to grow and achieve their dreams in cycling."

Chrétien and Staples will be joined by returning riders, compatriots Marc-André Soucy (under-23 road champion), Adam Roberge (under-23 time trial champion), and Pier-André Côté (elite men's criterium champion).

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Also new to the team are Adam Jamieson, who spent three years in Europe and the 2017 season with An Post Chain Reaction. He is also a member of Canada's men's Team Pursuit squad. He will be competing on the track at the Commonwealth Games in April in Australia and will start his road season in June at the Tour de Beauce.

Travis Samuel joins the team after spending three years with H&R Block. He had one of his best seasons finishing fifth at the GPC de Saguenay and ninth overall at Cascade Cycling Classic. He was also tenth at the Tour of Taihu Lake.

The 2018 roster also includes returning riders Ryan Roth, who provides a leadership role to the younger riders on the team. The team will also look for leadership from Emile Jean, who signed on again for 2018 after last year’s stage wins at the GPC de Saguenay, part the UCI America Tour.

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com