This week Sarah is suffering from a terrible chest infection/cough-of-doom and might possibly die before the end of the episode. So in order to avoid recording her death rattle we rush through the latest news on Toscana (actually we didn’t rush because this one made us angry), UCI rule changes, World’s broadcasting and a real tragedy that occurred during the week. We do try to end the show on a good note though, and fortunately there’s some good news to help us achieve that. It’s a bit of an emotional ride this week, but we do our best to get you through it all. Oh, and at some point Sarah challenges Brian Cookson to a swordfight. (1:20:57 MIN / 77.71 MB)
Things we talked about this week
We had feelings about things
- Brunello Fanini is asking the Italian Cycling Federation to investigate and penalise riders over the Giro della Toscana – we hope this backfires (actually Dan kind of hopes that it blows up in his face and leaves visible scars – but Dan’s a bastard)
- The UCI have got rid of their age restriction for women’s teams – we like this, but hope it’s just the first in a series of changes (we still really want a “pro” tier of women’s teams added, as soon as possible)
- Aurelio Bulbarelli, the Deputy Director of Italian tv channels RAI Sport, had an excellent interview on TuttoBici, with a lot he wasn’t happy about the coverage of the Cycling World Champs provided by InFront – especially the fact they didn’t even film the Junior races. We were happy to see that both the women’s and men’s races were the highest viewed programmes across the whole RAI network that weekend. (That interview is by cycling journalist and former cylist Giulia DeMaio – you should all follow her on twitter, she’s always excellent)
The death of Amy Dombroski
We can’t properly express our sadness and sense of loss with this news. It’s hard to know what to say when we didn’t know Amy personally, but the circumstances of the accident that took her life are all too familiar and genuinely tragic. Our thoughts and sympathies are with Amy’s friends and family as they grieve. Here are some items to read about Amy and also ways you can contribute to the memorial fund set up by her family.
- Just one of the many tribute articles written about Amy, by Dan Seaton on VeloNews
- The facebook page set up by her family for remembering Amy and organising tributes
- A memorial fund has been set up to help her family and to be used in her memory. Donations can be dropped off at Pro Peloton in Boulder, Colorado, or mailed to:
Memorial of Amy Dombroski
c\o Wells Fargo Deposits
1242 Pearl St
Boulder, CO 80302, USA
- You can see the memorial lap for Amy in the Behind the Barriers programme from the Providence Cyclocross Festival. BtB do really excellent coverage of the USA cyclocross scene, you should have a look round their site.
- A few weeks ago we mentioned Swordpanda’s blog about her first cyclocross race – and Sarah loved Accidento Bizarro’s blog about the first CX race she started and finished this season. Accidento Bizarro runs the great rêves per minute site, collecting dreams about cyclists – if you ever have one, make sure you submit it!
- We’ve mentioned it before, but it’s always worth reminding you to read Lisa Jacobs’ blog, Ride Happy – she’s the first ever female Australian CX champion!
- If you’d like to start CX (and even Dan admits it sounds fun) then have a look at Helen Wyman‘s tips for first-time CXers, on Total Women’s Cycling
Keep up to date with all the women’s peloton transfer news, with Sarah’s mega-table on Podium Café (and the conversation in the comments).
This week the big news was Dutch superstar Ellen van Dijk announcing she’s moving to Boels-Dolmans for 2014, on a three-year contract. We liked the Ode to Ellen written by Rabobank rider Iris Slappendel, it really made us smile.
Ellen will be joining former Rabo rider Megan Guarnier at Boels. Guarnier is a USA rider we really like, so we loved the TourChats video-cast with her last week. Watch/listen to it – not only has she got an MSC in Neuroscience, she’s also worked with nuclear reactors – and she’s funny and passionate about cycling and laid back too!
The 2013 and 2014 Road Calendar
In September 2012, there were originally 180 racing days on the UCI road calendar for 2013. Only 147 were raced – we lost 6 stage races and 9 day races, some for understandable reasons (truly horrific weather for the Novilon Euregiocup, Civil War stopping the three Golan races in Syria) but most from sponsorship issues.
The UCI calendar for 2014, published a few weeks ago, has 168 racing days on it – and that doesn’t include Golan, the Brazilian races that have never happened, and the fact that the organisers of both the Giro Toscana and the Tour de Languedoc Roussillon say they’re planning for their races to go ahead next year, even though they’re not on the calendar. We’re cautiously optimistic, with the usual caveats…
To find out more about next year’s road calendar, here’s Sarah’s post about it, and her analysis of 2013 and 2014 (with colour-coded charts). We’re still sad there are no UCI road races in Oceania or Africa, but we hope that will change.
The new race we’re really looking forward to next year is the Women’s Tour (of Britain, but they’re not allowed to call it that!) which will start in Northamptonshire on 7th May 2014, and run to the 11th. This is Sarah’s birthday weekend, so please, if you’re nearby, let’s meet up and cheer our heads off!
There’s still no news on a Para-cycling Track World Championships, or even a World Cup, for the 2013/14 or 2014/15 seasons, and we hope that’s changed as soon as possible. There is, however, an international Paracyling track meet in Newport, in Wales, from 30th November-2nd December 2013, and if you’re nearby, Sarah would love to meet you there, and have a beer/coffee and cheer on amazing cyclists. Tickets aren’t out yet, but put it in your diary. You don’t have to stay in Newport, either – Cardiff and Bristol are short train journeys away (taxis to the velodrome from Newport station)
If you’re in the UK, and have ever wanted to try track racing, check out this article on VeloJam at the (outdoor) Herne Hill velodrome.
And this is great news for Australian trackies – this year Melbourne will be hosting the inaugural women’s National Madison Championships. Sarah dreams of the day the women’s madison is included in Track World Cups and World Champs….
Sarah forgot to mention this, what with being on the verge of death etc, but there’ll be highlights of the Irish Rás na mBan shown on Eurosport in October, starting on Sunday 13th October. Here’s the times you can catch it on British Eurosport/Eurosport 2 – it’s a lovely race, all Irish countryside, pouring rain and hard racing!