The Week That Was...

News & Results

03/2/2004| 0 comments
by Ian Melvin

The Week That Was...

Ian comments on the happenings in the world of cycling.

prepared, will be different he assures us.   ?I think that this year everything will change and the best thing is that with his (Jan Ullrich) coming on board, I have less responsibility in the big tours.   I believe that we form a good trio, since the Kazakh Alexandre Vinokourov has made it clear that he is also a rider for the long stage races.   There is a place for everyone.   The American Lance Armstrong?. is the rider to beat,? he told Todociclismo.   Speaking of Armstrong, after his time trial win in the recent
Volta ao
Algarve
, he quipped "I wonder what Jan thought when he heard I won in
Portugal
, that I'm winning in February, when I'm nowhere near my peak.   I was thinking what would I do if I heard Ullrich had won a time-trial in February... I think I'd get straight down and do 50 sit-ups just to say to myself I was doing something. I didn't expect to win, but I did."

Going into the Spring Classics this year, expect to see a new look Muur van Gerardsbergen in the Ronde Van Vlanderaan.   The local council has decided to pull up the old cobbles on the climb in a similar manner to that of the near-by Koppenberg, replacing them with newer ones, although they claim the climb will remain just as difficult if not a little safer and smoother in the lower half of the 18% wall.   The old cobbles are available for a bargain price of just under US$2 ? the ultimate gift for any cycling fan I?m sure you?ll agree!

Finally, wrapping up for this week, I?m extremely pleased to announce that after missing the event last year, Super Mario Cipollini will be lining up on the start line of this years Tour de France after his Division 2 team, Domina Vacanze, was offered a wild card place in this year?s event.   ?It?s the best news I?ve received in many months.   At my age (37 this year!) I need big challenges.   I was hopeful because I knew that Mr Preaton (team owner) had worked very hard with Leblanc.   When important people get together, a solution is always possible.?   Tour Director, Jean Marie Leblanc, confirmed, ?Cipollini called me 10 days ago to say ?I really want to do the tour and I promise to get through everything?? ? right??..!

Till next week, take it easy and keep it rubber side down.   Remember, if you?ve got any thoughts or comments, drop me a line at ianmelvin@bigpond.com or email info@roadcycling.com .

Ciao,
Ian

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