The Week That Was...
Despite causing many an eyebrow to rise, Team Milram continues to highlight the positive and insist that the unusual pairing of Alessandro Petacchi and Erik Zabel within the same team, will work. German news agency DPA last week claimed that both riders would line up at the start of the Tour de France, one with a view to stage victories and another with a view to winning the Green jersey.
Gerry van Gerwan, team manager, said that, "Both Zabel and Petacchi will probably start the Tour which is a huge advantage for our team and our project. Petacchi offers the certainty of one, two or more stage wins. If that happens early [in the race] the team could then concentrate on working for Erik to take the green jersey."
It would appear though that Zabel would be the protected rider come the first goal of the season,
Should he fall short at
Returning this year for the ?Hell of the North? is the famous
The cobbles are currently undergoing restorative work having received a council grant for ?220,000?just enough to cover the costs of asphalting the roads of the forest.
Former World Hour record holder, Graeme Obree, will finally get to view himself on the big screen when ?The flying Scotsman? is released in spring 2006. After years of false hope and disappointments, the film is finally underway with Jonny Lee Miller playing the lead role of Obree, the man who built a record-breaking bicycle out of parts of a washing machine.
In a move that has shocked few, the organisers of the three grand tours have withdrawn their races and those others, which are organised by them, from the 2006 ProTour calendar. These other races include such prestigious as Paris Nice, Tirreno-Adriatico, Milan-San Remo, Paris-Roubaix, Fl?che Wallonne, Li?ge-Bastogne-Li?ge, Paris-Tours and the Tour of Lombardy.
The UCI chose to harden its stance against the ongoing dispute with the major
following the recent presentation of the 2006 Tour de France route. New UCI President, Pat McQuaid, said that, ?unless the organisers come down off their fence and are willing to make some compromises, no progress can be made.? Tours
The race organisers ultimately chose to make the decisions themselves and have ultimately chosen to form what will be known as a Grand Tour trophy competition.
Entry into the events in 2006 will be granted to all ProTour teams with a further two wild card selections at the organisers discretion. In
The GT trophy competition will have a total prize purse of ?2 million to be split between the top seven teams. In order to encourage participation in the three major stage races, the race organisers will pay any team who competes in all three, an appearance fee of ?100,000.
Finally, this week, we would all like to pay our respects to Charly Gaul, former winner of the Tour de France and Giro d?Italia.
The ?Angel of the Mountains? died just short of his 73rd birthday.
Until next week, send your thoughts to me at Before sure to check out the latest views and opinions in our Forums. ? And check out a new Roadcycling.com advertiser coming to the site this Thursday. Our many advertisers make Roadcycling.com possible..