B&B Hotels exodus gathers pace
We started the day with B&B Hotels-KTM riders telling the story of how they got told to find teams elsewhere and towards the close of play another name has jumped ship.
Victor Koretzky has signed with Bora-Hansgrohe for 2023.
The Frenchman is best known for his mountain biking exploits but rode the tour of flanders earlier this year with B&B.
he said: “My big dream is the 2024 Olympic MTB race in Paris. The nice thing is that with BORA – hansgrohe and Specialized, I’ll have a perfect set-up for every terrain.”
📢 NEW RIDER SIGNING 📢BORA – hansgrohe secures late transfer, as @KORETZKYVictor completes the squad for 2023.Read more here 👉🏼 https://t.co/14C6Ydbfgd📸: @sprintcycling pic.twitter.com/dJVAAY5HFkDecember 6, 2022
Rose sitting on 45,000 unassembled bikes
German bike manufacturer Rose is sitting on around 45,000 unassembled bikes because it can’t get parts from China.
A report in cycling industry publication Bike Europe, citing local Dutch media reports said that the company had built up a surplus to try and stop production coming to a standstill.
However, now it has surplus bikes sat unassembled.
Last week the brand dropped the price of its bikes by 15% passing on efficiencies it had found to consumers, but it warned prices may now increase in future.
The cost of holding stock has meant the brand has had to seek additional loans from its lenders, but Rose chief executive Thorsten Heckrath-Rose told the publication: “Because we are transparent and can explain exactly where the current challenges come from, we still have the trust of our lenders. The advantage is that our brand continues to develop well, despite the problems. That creates confidence.”
Rose no longer ships to the UK due to Brexit.
Nairo Quintana is getting married
Giro d’Italia winner Nairo Quintana has gotten engaged to his long-time partner Yeimy Paola.
Posting on Instagram he wrote: “After 14 years I finally took the step and she said I do 💍 Thank you Yeimy Paola for being my life partner and continuing to build a future together.”
In her own post on the social network Paola wrote: “‘Yes to love, yes to life together and yes to the love of my life.’ I love you Nairo, thank God for allowing me to live such a beautiful moment and for our beautiful children.”
Quintana is still on the hunt for a new team after leaving Arkea Samsic following testing positive for UCI-banned painkiller tramadol at this year’s Tour de France. He was subsequently stripped of his results from the race but has not had to serve a ban.
New Look 765 Optimum endurance bike launched
French bike brand Look has a new iteration of its endurance bike the 764 Optimum out today.
The brand claims it’s “20% more compliant than before”.
You can check out all the details in my colleagues launch story here.
Giro d’Italia’s NFT maglia rosa
Giro d’Italia organiser RCS unveiled the new version of the maglia rosa yesterday and today NFT seller Italia NFT, which has a partnership with RCS, has fired the starting gun for an auction of an NFT of the jersey.
The winner of the auction won’t just get the NFT but an actual jersey too plus the chance to watch the final stage of the race from a VIP car as part of a full hospitality package.
We’ve been to the Giro before and we can vouch for the quality of the catering at least. We’ve also been in cars behind riders in a time trial and on road stages and will say it is definitely a fun experience.
The auction ends on 10 January 2023 and bidding is currently at $500.
An evening with Sean Yates
British racing legend and recipient of the 2022 Cycling Weekly lifetime achievement award Sean Yates is appearing on YouTube to be interviewed by journalist Matt Barbet.
This evening at 7pm he’ll be talking about his career to date both on and off the bike.
Trust me he’s got a ton of great stories as we interviewed him for two hours – I’m informed once you get him going he can talk for ages – for this week’s magazine.
You can also read about his exploits in a series of pieces we’ve run on the website this week.
Whether it’s on his weight loss and Tour de France time trail victory, or how he got his nickname or how he struggled with overtrainning he’s always an entertaining raconteur.
Santa in Strava Art
This festive piece of Strava Art comes from Anthony Hoyte in Paris submitted to the ever-reliable Strava.Art blog.
He had to cycle for 15 hours and cover 177km to get this done.
You can see the Strava file here.
AG2R Citroën show off new BMC bikes
Opinion in the Cycling Weekly office is firmly divided on whether we like this new bike livery from everyone’s favourite brown-shorts wearing team.
Some of us love it, others really dislike the red to blue fade on the top tube.
Let us know what you think by tagging us on Twitter.
Finn Crockett joins Wiv-Sungod
Commonwealth Games bronze medalist Finn Crockett is joining British continental team Wiv-Sungod for 2023.
Crockett rode for the soon to be defunct Ribble-Weldtite in 2022.
Wiv have been announcing a raft of signings one each day. Earlier this month they announced the team has a new headline sponsor for 2023 and will be known as AT85 after the infrastructure company stepped in to bankroll the squad.
At the weekend they announced the signing of former Ineos rider Chris Lawless who will join the team from ProTeam Total Energies. Lawless won the Tour de Yorkshire in 2019.
Egan Bernal’s touching message for his dad
It reads: “We all deserve someone to take care of us like my dad did me. My guardian angel on the road.
“He comes to my house every day when I am still sleeping to get everything ready for training, and leaves in the evening when he leaves the bike washed for the next day.”
Todos merecemos a alguien que nos cuide como mi papá a mi. Mi Ángel guardián en la carretera.Llega cada día a mi casa cuando yo sigo durmiendo a alistar todo para el entrenamiento, y se va en la tarde-noche cuando deja lavada la bicicleta para el día siguiente 🙏🏽 pic.twitter.com/ttmcNxDZwiDecember 6, 2022
Ride and dine with Miguel Indurain, Philippe Gilbert and Sean Kelly
Entries are open for one of cycling’s most exclusive luxury riding holiday’s.
Pairing chefs with big name ex-pros the LeBlanq Tour holidays all feature opportunities to ride with some of the greats of our sport and then chow down on some of the finest food the
world has to offer.
If that wasn’t enough they all take place in some of the most iconic cycling locations.
The tour operator has released its schedule today for the 2023 season.
None of this comes cheap of course, the starting price is £1,700 and many are getting close to £4,000 for three nights away but it does promise something significantly more luxurious than riders at the Tour de France bunking in a Campanile could expect.
Here are the various trip’s details.
Rioja, 13-16 April
Ride with with three time World Champion Óscar Freire and living legend Miguel Induráin. Menus will be created by the executive chef of Hotel Marqués de Riscal in partnership with Ashley Palmer-Watts. From £3,795
Flanders, 8-11 June
Two Belgian legends, Philippe Gilbert and the Lion of Flanders Johan Museeuw join riders on this trip. From £2,995
Norway, 9-12 September
World Champion Thor Hushovd will accompany riders around the fjords of Norway with food cooked by former Team Sky chef Henrik Orre. From £3,695
Ireland, 22-24 September
Two of Ireland’s greatest ever cyclists, Sean Kelly, four time winner of the Green jersey in the Tour de France and Nico Roche, twice Irish National Champion, join guests on the emerald Isle. Former Michelin starred head chef and co-owner of Chapter One in Dublin, Ross Lewis will be providing the food. From £2,795 riders
Ibiza, 19-22 October
Popular Welshman and Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas will be riding with guests on this end of season trip with and a feast celebrating the island’s best produce created by Michelin starred Alex Atala, star of Netflix’s Chef’s Table. From £3,395
Cape Town, 16-19 November
South African Daryl Impey and yellow jersey wearer David Millar, should provide plenty of cafe ride chat while South African chef Kobus van der Merwe, owner of Wolfgat restaurant, named ‘World’s Best Restaurant’ in 2019, provides the food. From £3,250
Tom Pidcock’s cyclo-cross calendar confirmed
Tom Pidcock will take a break from racing cyclo-cross this winter after this weekend’s round of the World Cup in Dublin, according to a report by Het Nieuwsblad.
The World Champion is due to face-off against Wout Van Aert in the Irish capital on Sunday.
Then the paper reports he won’t return to competition until Exact Cross Mol (23 December), followed by the World Cup Gavere on Boxing Day; Superprestige Heusden-Zolder, the day after (27 December); Superprestige Diegem the day after that (28 December) and the Exact Cross Loenhout (30 December).
Pidcock had been making up his programme on a week-by-week basis but clearly now feels confident enough to commit to a series of races.
Whether the Yorkshireman will defend his rainbow jersey in February is still unknown. He has indicated in interviews that he wants to be in good form for the road Classics season and being in peak condition in February clashes with that goal.
Primož Roglič back on his bike after surgery
Jumbo-Visma leader Primož Roglič is back training outside for the first time since he had shoulder surgery.
The Slovenian had been training indoors but posting on his Instagram yesterday he confirmed that he’s now back out in the wilds.
In November Roglič had confirmed that rehabilitation from the surgery was going well.
In yesterday’s Instagram post he said: “I’m riding a bike outside and there is snow. Good start, no?”
Rapha kicks-off Festive 500
UK clothing brand Rapha has kicked off its annual Festive 500 challenge. The task is simple, ride 500 kilometres between Christmas eve and new years eve.
This year you can win an Open U.P bike by signing up for the challenge on Rapha’s Strava page.
There’s also Rapha Festive 500 group rides on Zwift every two hours to help you meet the goal if the weather is particularly inclement.
As you would expect there will also be some special edition kit for sale from Rapha soon.
Dylan Groenewegen beaten by a 15 year-old
Sprinting ace and Tour de France stage winner Dylan Groenewegen was beaten by a 15 year-old at a cyclo-cross race in the Netherlands at the weekend.
The Dutchman lost ground to teenager Michiel Mouris early on according to the report by local news source NH Nieuws, and couldn’t get back.
“Dylan rides very fast, I thought.” Mouris told the TV channel. “I rode in the front for a long time, but Dylan came close. It is special to win against him.”
Campagnolo corkscrew now in gold
The infamous Campagnolo corkscrew, so famous that Cycling Weekly‘s editor has banned its use in our annual Christmas gift guide, has been released in a gold plated version.
The gold plating is 24karat and it’s a snip at €1,950.
Trinity signs a trio of riders
British domestic under-23 team Trinity Racing has signed Finlay Pickering, Joe Pidcock and Dean Harvey.
Pickering is probably best known for winning the Tour of Alsace in 2022 and had an impressive showing at the World Championships in 2021 as a junior. There he was on an absolute flyer in the time trial before crashing into the barriers.
Joe Pidcock is, as you might have guessed, the younger brother of tom Pidcock and rode for the Groupama FDJ development squad during 2022.
Dean Harvey is a road and cyclo-cross rider who has been racking up top tens in the British National Trophy series this winter.
MARK CAVENDISH CAUGHT UP IN ‘CARNAGE’ OF B&B HOTELS COLLAPSE
Riders are annoyed that B&B Hotels manager Jérôme Pineau waited until last weekend to tell riders his B&B hotels team that he had failed to secure the sponsorship to take the team to the next level.
The news left them free to find rides elsewhere but this late in the season that will prove difficult.
In an interview with Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad rider Jens Debusschere said: “Somehow I was glad that I heard the whole story for once, but at the same time you have to say: not telling everyone until December that everyone is free, that is actually not done for me.”
He confirmed that Mark Cavendish was present at a meeting in October where management outlined their plans, at the point the city of Paris was set to back the team.
But two days later that sponsorship evaporated “for political reasons”, his fellow rider Eliot Lietaer told the paper. It’s a situation the paper describes as leaving “carnage” in its wake.
Lietaer added: “In any case, the team will not continue in the form he had foreseen… I didn’t see it coming at all. Pineau has been a racer himself. I thought he must have a plan B somewhere, something he kept in reserve. Apparently not.”
Both riders said there was hope the team, which still has a budget of €4-5m will continue in some form.
Debusschere added: “I also hope that Mark Cavendish, for example, finds a solution for next year. That he can at least go for that record victory in the Tour.”