Velo News is featuring an article about pre-season cycling in Espana. The article will cover why Spain has become the "in" spot for pros and where they ride. It will also cover training camps in Espana, southern Italy and France. Please send information regarding your experiences with European camps or any other information you may have about riding and racing in these locales to Julie Walsh. Contact Julie at 212-665-5374 or via email at email@example.com. Thanks
CASERO FINALLY SIGNS
Spaniard Angel Luis Casero, winner of the 2001 Vuelta a España, has signed with German Team Coast. After long negotiations, the 29-year old decided to go with the German team, after riding the last two years for now defunct Team Festina. Casero's palmares also include the overall win at the 1994 Tour d'Avenir and two Spanish National Championships. The German team has absorbed the majority of riders from Festina, along with the sport director, Juan Fernandez. Casero admitted that he had three offers on the table from Lampre, Maglieria Cage and Coast, but decided to head to Germany, because there he will ride for two directors that came from Festina: Fernandez and Roberto Torres, along with many old teammates and personnel. In terms of the possibility of the team been selected for the Tour de France, he hopes that hs presence will improve those possibilities.
LAMPRE – DAIKIN LAUNCHES 2002
The 23 riders of Team Lampre-Daikin for 2002 will meet from December 10-13 in Garda to amongst other things, take the team photos. The team will debut in 2002 on January 25, 2002 at the Tour of Qatar.
Mario Cipollini and six of his teammates have left from Rome to Cape Town, South Africa, where they will do their first team retreat, which will end on December 20th. Cipollini has gone with Acqua & Sapone teammates Mario Scirea, Giovanni Lombardi, Guido Trenti, Cesare Di Cintio, Daniele Bennati (neo pro) and Slovenian Martin Derganc. Cipollini's seasonal debut will be at the Tour of the Mediterranean from February 13-17.
Gilberto Simoni, winner of the last Giro d'Italia married on Saturday at Palù di Giovo to Arianna Sebastiani. The small town church could not contain all of the people invited. The Mass was celebrated by five priests and was presided by Father Claudio Moser, brother of Francesco Moser, who is also Arianna's uncle.
But Simoni's eyes are already on 2002: To beat Lance Armstrong in the mountains at the next Tour de France, which he will race in July 2002. On Tuesday he will already be at a team retreat with Team Saeco-Longoni, where he will meet Danilo Di Luca (winner of the Giro di Lombardia), Mirko Celestino (winner at Laigueglia, Tre Valli Varesine and Milano-Torino this year) for a total of 23 riders, of which 10 are new. Simoni commented: "I'm not saying that I'm going to beat Armstrong at the Tour, but I will attack him in the mountains".
RIDERS TRAINING LIKE COMMANDOS
Team CSC-Tiscali began yesterday a survival adventure in a Swedish forest, close to Malmöe. During two days, yesterday and today, riders, directors and personnel have been split into groups of seven and been placed in the middle of the forest, commando-style, where they will have to orient themselves to reach different "stations" and complete a series of "tests". The team had already used this experience last season, which was their first and the directors felt that a strong experience like this one would bring solidarity to the group and would be a good way to begin their preparation. It turns out that the adventure worked out well and helped in created good relationships between the team personnel. That is why team manager Bjarne Riis decided to repeat the experience and increase it. Last year they spent only one day in Herning, a Danish forest. They went out at 5PM, already dark in the Scandinavian region and reached barracks at 1AM, where they all slept on some cushions on the floor.
To get there they had to cross a lake, do some rafting, cross a rope bridge and prepare dinner with only 5 matches to do so.
To reach the different spots they also used maps, compass and two flashlights per group. Each group of seven also had a guide, who would only intervene if the group was heading in a completely wrong direction and he would make suggestions to orient them in the right direction. Everything very controlled and very sportsman-like, not military. This time they will be away for two days, which they will have to spend in tents and sleeping bags. The survival supplies will be the same, with an increase in the matches and food. They will have many more objectives. The CSC-Tiscali personnel will have to row on a river, build a bridge made out of logs to cross and get a large rock from the bottom of the river with the help of a type of crane, that they will have to build with logs.
KELME PREFERS THE CARIBBEAN
Danish Team CSC-Tiscali is the only one to send their personnel to "Survival" camp in the pre-season, with most teams doing more conventional activities. Spanish Team Kelme sends the team to Caribbean vacations in order to bring the team personnel closer. "The vacations to Cuba and Santo Domingo have been really positive", affirms Kelme's director Vicente Belda. The relationships amongst the group are different that in a team concentration, we are all on vacation, nobody is giving orders and there are no bosses. It is a relaxed environment, where everyone knows who they are. We end up knowing each other better and that make for better communication.
Ibanesto.com's Jose Miguel Echavarri believes that CSC-Tiscali's innovation "could be interested for a new team, to break the ice when the riders don't know each other. But that is not our case. At iBanesto.com we sign no more than 6 riders a year and it isn't hard to integrate them. In the 80's it was fashionable to have a team concentration in a Skiing Resort. Julian Gorospe, who used to be a rider for Reynolds in that time and is now the director for Team Euskaltel remembers: "It used to be very positive, because we would practice cross country skiing, which is very beneficial to cycling. We would work out the arms, legs and benefited from the work at altitude".
PANTANI STARTING EARLY
Marco Pantani is anxious to start the 2002 season and will begin his season before Ullrich and Armstrong, his traditional adversaries. Pantani wants to participate in the Tour de France, in order for that to happen his team, Mercatone Uno, will have to be competitive already in March and April, since the French choose the rest of the teams for the Tour in early May. Pantani is programmed to debut in February in early May at the Ruta del Sol, a stage race in southern Spain. Ullrich and Armstrong will also begin their seasons in Spain. Ullrich has decided that he will race the Vuelta Valenciana from February 26 to March 2. Armstrong will be the last to start, probably starting at the Vuelta a Murcia from March 6 to 10.
WISCONSIN STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS, 12/02/2001, Green Bay, WI
1. Duane F Dickey; St Paul Bicycle Racing; MN
2. Frank Dierking; Great Dane Velo Club; WI- Wisconsin State Champion
3. Jacob Stechmann; St Paul Bicycle Racing, MN
4. Aric W Hareland; Squadra Corsa; MN
5. Gene Tolli; Brazen Dropouts; WI- Silver Medal
6. Harry Anderson; WI- Bronze Medal
7. Justin Salzmann; Team Gary Fisher; WI
8. Todd Miller; Great Dane Velo Club; WI
9. Jason Lundretti; Great Dane Velo Club; WI
10. Bruce Breitrick; WI
11. Tom Boehnen Jr; Great Dane Velo Club; WI
1. Rebecca Cleveland; The Bike Hub; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (19-34 Yr Women)
2. Faye Hartmann; Brazen Dropouts; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (35-44 Yr Women)
3. Patti Kaufmann; Hampshire Cycle Club; WI- Silver Medal (19-34 Yr Women)
4. Becky Heinz; Team Bellin Health; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (45+ Women)
5. Cindy Carter; WI
1. Mike Eckert; DC Bicycle Works; WI
2. Seth Lenss; Team Bellin Health; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (17-18 Yr Men)
3. Mitch Plout; Hayes Disk Brakes; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (15-16 Yr Men)
4. Cole House; Team2 Racing; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (13-14 Yr Men)
5. Kari Schindler; Team Bellin Health; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (17-18 Yr Women)
6. Benjamin Overeem; Team Bellin Health; WI
7. Jasmine House; Team Bellin Health; WI- Wisconsin State Champion (11-12 Yr Women)
1. John Ericsson; Brazen Dropouts; WI- Wisconsin State Champion
2. Todd Shaw; Team Bellin Health; WI- Silver Medal
3. Chris Setter; Healthpoint Cycling; WI- Bronze Medal
4. Carl Ham; WI
5. Paul Roltgen; Brazen Dropouts; WI
6. Travis Goodlan; Stoton Cycles; WI
7. Robert Springer; Hayes Disc Brakes; WI
8. David Kay; Team Bellin Health; WI
1. Matthew Block; WI
2. Rick Biel; Just Pedal Faster; WI
3. Josh Hanson; Team Nordik Sports; WI
4. Robert C Weiss; Intruders Cycling Club; WI- Wisconsin State Champion
5. John Margin; Team Nordik Sports; WI
6. Douglas House; Team Bellin Health; WI
7. Michael Gerke; WEIRD; WI
8. Charles Cunningham; Team Bellin Health- Silver Medal
9. Gary Smits; Team Bellin Health; WI
10. Warren Heisse; Team Alterra; WI- Bronze Medal
11. Tim Patterson; WI
12. Andrew Overeem; Team Bellin Health; WI
13. Steve Knaus; Team Bellin Health; WI
14. Fred Young; DC Bikes; WI
15. Scott Beduhn; Team Gear'n Up; WI
16. John C Daming; WI
1. Brian Smith; Nova Cyclesport; WI- Wisconsin State Champion
2. Kenneth Haines Jr; Midwest Cannondale; WI- Silver Medal
3. Bruce Breitrick; WI- Bronze Medal
4. Timothy Theobald; WI
5. Brock Hansen; Hampton Roads; WI
6. Roger Schneider; Cyclesmith; WI
1. Bob Hayssen; WI- Wisconsin State Champion
Last year at this time, Romans Vainsteins' telephone wouldn't stop ringing. The Latvian, had just become World Champion and was being siege by the press. Physical problems conspired to make the year 2001 a quiet one for Vainsteins.
Q. Romans, during all of 2001 you showed that you had good physical condition. You were involved in the midst of many important races, but you couldn't grab any big classics. What didn't work?
A. At the finishes of the World Cup classics, I was lacking team support. At San Remo I was left without teammates at the time of the sprint. At Flanders, Museeuw was caught with 10kms to go and the team didn't work for me. I went well at Paris-Roubaix, a race where Domo took the podium. In the second half of the season I started suffering pains in the ligaments of the left knee, which affected my performance.
Q. How are things at Domo Farm Frites?
A. Things are good for me. Domo has one main objective: the World Cup classics. I'm free to prepare for other races in whatever way I feel.
Q. It seems that you have collected many important placings in 2001, which one was the biggest one in 2001?
A. Without a doubt Milano - Sanremo. I remember like if it was yesterday. I had optimal physical condition and I was right behind the pink train (Telekom) in an ideal position, on Erik Zabel's wheel. With 400 meters to go Jo Planckaert held on twice to my pants, forcing me to loose Zabel's wheel. That meant that I had to make up two bike lengths. I resumed the sprint, very close to Zabel, but Cipollini came across ahead of me. A true sin.
Q. Where are you going for the team retreat?
A. Domo will be in Alicante, where we will hold two retreats, one in December and one in January.
Q. Have you already decided on a program for next season?
A. I will debut in Mallorca and during the spring I will follow the same path as last season. The novelty for my season will be my come back to the Giro d'Italia after three years. I hope to maintain my form from the classics to take a stage win there.
Q. The route seems adapted to your characteristics.
A. It all depends on the form.
Q. Which are the races you dream about?
A. Milano-Sanremo, Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix and Amstel Gold.
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