LA PLANCHE DES BELLES FILLES, France (Reuters) – Having the Tour de France favorite and the world champion in your team leaves little room for others to shine but Sky’s Chris Froome carved his own name into British cycling folklore on Saturday.
His victory on the seventh stage, which helped Bradley Wiggins take the yellow jersey and took the pressure off Mark Cavendish after a crash-hit Friday, was a supreme display of power and control on a famous French mountain.
TOMBLAINE, France (Reuters) – Giro d’Italia champion Ryder Hesjedal was among a string of injured riders to quit the Tour de France on Saturday following a series of nasty crashes.
In total 17 riders have so far withdrawn after a brutal first week at the world’s greatest race, with FDJ-Big Mat team boss Marc Madiot telling Reuters: “It has not been cycling, it has been Rollerball.”
METZ, France (Reuters) – Tour de France hopeful Ryder Hesjedal was literally knocked out of contention by another violent crash on Friday, the latest bloody multi-rider pileup to blight the world’s greatest race.
The Garmin-Sharp team was left in tatters, with shirts and skin layers ripped to shreds, as Giro d’Italia champion Hesjedal lost more than 13 minutes in a smash described by team mate David Millar as the worst he had been involved in.
METZ, France (Reuters) – The Tour de France heads into the mountains for the first time on Saturday but the ascent to La Planche des Belles Filles is not expected to cause too many problems for favorite Bradley Wiggins and defending champion Cadel Evans.
The 199 km seventh stage from Tomblaine in eastern France only skirts the beginning of the Alps with the final climb the sole tricky section, where local rider Thibaut Pinot is expected to shine given he trains there regularly.
As the annual Arsenal transfer soap-opera gets underway, it’s worth wondering why such high-profile players leave one of England’s best clubs every year.
Should Robin van Persie sign for Manchester City, much will be made of their financial muscle, but they are not the only club in England with resources – indeed, Arsenal are one of the richest clubs in the world and could easily afford to offer competitive wages.
SAINT QUENTIN, France (Reuters) – The Tour de France is six days old but such are the nuances of cycling that long-time race leader Fabian Cancellara knows he has no chance of wearing the yellow jersey when the carnival finishes up in Paris on July 22.
Few other sports compare when it comes to false dawns, misleading results and unrealistic dreams but at least Swiss Cancellara – nicknamed Spartacus – is well aware of cycling’s perverse twists of fate almost worthy of a Roman epic.
ST QUENTIN, France (Reuters) – Garmin-Sharp manager Jonathan Vaughters has dismissed part of a report which said he and team members agreed to accept suspended bans to testify against Lance Armstrong in a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) case.
On Thursday, Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf said Garmin’s Tour de France riders Christian Vande Velde and David Zabriskie, and two more U.S. cyclists on other teams, had agreed to give evidence of wrongdoing in exchange for suspended six-month bans.
As Spain’s victorious Euro 2012 male side returned to Madrid with the Henri Delaunay trophy, football administrators in Sweden were already working to make Euro 2013 for women a similar success.
“Euro 2013 is the second-biggest event UEFA are planning next year, after the Champions League final for men,” former Sweden international Viktoria Svensson told Reuters in an interview.
ROUEN, France (Reuters) – Garmin-Sharp manager Jonathan Vaughters has dismissed a report claiming he and team members agreed to accept suspended bans to testify against Lance Armstrong in a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) case.
On Thursday, Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf said Garmin Tour de France riders Christian Vande Velde and David Zabriskie, and two more American cyclists on other teams, had agreed to give evidence in exchange for delayed six-month bans.
BOULOGNE SUR MER, France (Reuters) – Cadel Evans has a simple plan to try to retain his Tour de France title – sit tight and wait for the young guns to burn themselves out.
The 35-year-old has been there and done it all but even he is finding this Tour a bit hazardous after big crashes hit stage three and led to two pullouts, Team Sky’s Kanstantsin Siutsou with a broken leg and Jose Joaquin Rojas with a fractured collarbone.