Monday, July 24, 2017

Saxo Bank wants to continue partnership

Lars Seier Christensen, CEO of Saxo Bank, and team owner Oleg Tinkov met the press on top of Hautacam arm in arm after Rafal Majka had secured his mountain jersey. Saxo Bank passed on the main sponsorship title to Tinkoff Credit System for this season but both men wish to continue the collaboration.

Lars Seier was onboard the team bus before the start of the stage to Hautacam, where he shared his thoughts about sponsoring one of the top teams in cycling.

“A sponsorship like this doesn’t get old. We reach a global audience by supporting a team that uses cutting edge technology just like the resources we have at Saxo Bank. The team keeps evolving but the fundamental approach stay the same, says Lars Seier Christensen.

According to Lars Seier, Saxo Bank shares many of the same philosophies as the team – among them the combination of teamwork and strong individuals.

“Bjarne has 5 sporting philosophies and when we started sponsoring the team I talked to Jens Voigt. He told me that he had never been on a team that used a set of principals actively. I told him that Saxo Bank actually had 7 principals. He said ‘ohh no, don’t tell Bjarne, then he’ll make 3 new ones to beat you”, laughs Lars Seier Christensen and continues:

“I think the team has shown that their principals work. It was easy to give up after Contador crashed but the discipline and spirit of the entire team has turned a big setback into a very memorable Tour de France. This is something I notice and I believe that the three wins and a very likely polka dot jersey in Paris bear witness to some very strong principals that are essential to our sponsorship”.

Lars Seier tells, that the relationship between the main sponsors of a team is important to ensure stability in the long run.

“The relationship between Saxo Bank and Tinkov Credit Systems is, just as I hoped, really beneficial. Oleg is a unique personality and I can see how much he wants his riders to succeed. He’s always very excited at the finish line. We’ve been on the bike together a few times together with our families, which I really enjoyed. It’s no secret that he would like us to continue as title sponsor. We’re still working on the final details but we definitely intend to stay with the team”, concludes Lars Seier Christensen.

Moinard Renews With BMC Racing Team

The BMC Racing Team will extend the contract of Amaël Moinard, President/General Manager Jim Ochowicz announced Friday.

'A Valuable Asset'
A member of the BMC Racing Team since 2011, Moinard has helped teammate Tejay van Garderen to sixth place in the overall standings heading into the final weekend of the Tour de France. The Frenchman also figured in breakaways on Stages 9, 10, 14 and 17 and was the winner of Stage 2 of the Tour du Haut Var in February. "Amaël has proven to be a valuable asset to the team in past years in the grand tours, and in particular, in the Tour de France," Ochowicz said. "He joins his eight other teammates here in France who are confirmed for their participation with the team for 2015." Moinard, who helped teammate Cadel Evans win the Tour de France in 2011, said he enjoys the role of domestique he has often been tasked to play for the team. "To work for Tejay at the Tour de France has really been a pleasure," he said. "We have been going in the moves to be part of the race and try to win stages, or to go in the breakaways to be support for Tejay. That freedom convinced me to keep riding for the BMC Racing Team." Specific terms of Moinard's contract were not announced, in keeping with BMC Racing Team policy.

Tour de France, Stage 18: Van Garderen Fifth

BMC Racing Team's Tejay van Garderen finished fifth on the final day in the mountains Thursday at the Tour de France as Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team) widened his lead and the fight for the podium positions tightened.

Remains Sixth Overall
Van Garderen reached the summit finish of the 145.5-kilometer race 75 seconds after solo stage winner Nibali to remain sixth overall, 11:34 off the lead. He rode the final kilometers with mountains classification leader and double stage winner Rafal Majka (Tinkoff-Saxo) and best young rider Thibaut Pinot ( and Jean-Christophe Péraud (Ag2r La Mondiale) – with the latter two climbing over Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) into second and third place overall. "It went well today," van Garderen said. "I just had it in my mind that 'this is the last mountain before the end of the Tour, so if you're going to do something you have to do it today.' " While Valverde was dropped and fell from second to fourth overall, shaking the others proved more difficult, van Garderen said. "When I was setting a hard tempo, I would look back and Pinot always looked pretty easy on my wheel," he said. "He has shown many times this tour that he is more explosive than me. So I couldn't really get a gap and couldn't really grind him off my wheel with a tempo because he is so strong."

Help From Teammates
Van Garderen received support from several teammates to make up time on Valverde and the rider in fifth overall, Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale). BMC Racing Team's Daniel Oss, who was part of a 20-rider breakaway, led that escape group onto the day's third categorized climb, the Col du Tourmalet. Teammate Peter Stetina recovered from being bumped off the road by another rider to help pace van Garderen on the final climb. "Tejay did what he is capable of doing – he has been doing it all week," Stetina said. "He is consistent, he is steady, and I think he can have a good time trial in two days." BMC Racing Team Sport Director Yvon Ledanois said it was good to see van Garderen take 38 seconds out of Bardet, who is now 2:07 ahead of him. "We had three riders with Tejay at the top of the Tourmalet and all the guys did a good job helping him," Ledanois said. "Tejay also did a very good job on the last climb, taking time from Bardet. It was good for his morale before the time trial."

Listen to complete comments from Ledanois and van Garderen on the BMC Racing Team's Tour de France Audio Line:

Lotto Belisol: Preview Tour de Wallonie

From Saturday 26th of July until Wednesday 30th of July the Tour de Wallonie is scheduled. This stage race from the Europe Tour is contested by teams of seven riders. Jens Debusschere will ride his first race in the jersey of Belgian champion. He is accompanied by among other Maxime Monfort, who comes back after a crash in the Tour de Suisse.

The Tour de Wallonie consists of fifteen stages, there is no time trial. The first stage there are actually two big laps with three hills, among it the Kluisberg. This stage and the one on Sunday offer the best chances to the sprinters. In stage three escapees have a chance or there can be a sprint of a reduced peloton. On Tuesday there are eleven climbs on the course. The last one is the Mur d’Amay at 17.2 kilometers from the finish in Waremme. On the last day the riders get to do the final of Liège-Bastogne-Liège with the Côte de la Roche aux Faucons, the Côte de Saint-Nicolas and finish at Côte d’Ans.

Bart Leysen, sports director: “Apart from Jelle Vanendert, who rode the Tour of Austria, everyone comes back in competition after a period of rest. For Jens Debusschere it will be a stimulus all year long to be able to wear that Belgian jersey. He’s our man for the sprint, together with Kris Boeckmans. Tosh Van der Sande can survive the short climbs and is definitely fast when a small group gets to the finish. The first two stages can definitely end with a bunch sprint. The third stage it’s uncertain.”

“The team is put together so that we have a man for each type of stage. We want to race offensively. Jelle Vanendert and Maxime Monfort are our GC contenders. Although I expect Tosh should be able to set a good result as well. Pim Ligthart and Tim Wellens can join breakaways and can finish the job. Tim became eighth in the overall classification last year, so he can aim for a good GC as well. The last day is the toughest. At the end it’s almost identical to the final of Liège-Bastogne-Liège. Before that there are six other hills. It will be difficult to control with teams of seven riders. Wednesday will be decisive.”

Selection Lotto Belisol: Kris Boeckmans, Jens Debusschere, Pim Ligthart, Maxime Monfort, Tosh Van der Sande, Jelle Vanendert and Tim Wellens.

Sports directors: Jean-Pierre Heynderickx and Bart Leysen.


Stage 1: Saturday 26th of July: Frasnes-lez-Anvaing – Tournai (147.9 km)

Stage 2: Sunday 27th of July: Peronnes-lez-Antoing –Perwez (193.1 km)

Stage 3: Monday 28th of July: Somme-Leuze – Neuchâteau (174.1 km)

Stage 4: Tuesday 29th of July: Herve – Waremme (174.9 km)

Stage 5: Wednesday 30th of July: Malmedy – Ans (180.6 km)

Canty earns stagiaire ride with Drapac

Drapac Professional Cycling is pleased to announce that Brendan Canty will join the team as a stagiaire from August 1, 2014.

Making his debut for Drapac at next month’s Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, the impressive young climber from Victoria, Australia, will be looking to make the most of the opportunity with the Professional Continental outfit.

Initially a cross-country runner, 22-year-old Canty came to the sport of cycling reasonably late, via triathlon. A sixth place in the Amy Gillett Foundation’s Gran Fondo last September led to Canty being convinced to enter his first road race, the Stratford to Dargo. Fast gaining a reputation as a true test for Australia’s best climbers with a final 10.7km peak, which averages at an 8% gradient but tops out at 17% in the final kilometre, Canty turned heads by winning solo. Having captured the attention of the Australian domestic cycling community, he signed on with the - Search2Retain team for the 2014 National Road Series season.

Drapac Director of Performance, Keith Flory, said that Canty would be primed for the next step in his development.

“Brendan will join up with the rest of the team prior to Utah for a specific training camp, which will be tailored according to the particular demands of the race,” he explained. “It’s a tough race, so we’re doing everything we can to ensure the guys go into it as prepared as possible. 

“On a number of occasions Brendan has shown some real glimpses of the talent we believe he possesses,” Flory continued. “He’s young and has lots of scope for development, so we’re very keen to put him in an environment that will allow us to work with him to continue his progression and allow him to hopefully shine.”

Canty said that he was fortunate to have been given the opportunity with Drapac.

“I am certain the next couple of months will provide an absolutely amazing experience,” he explained. “Besides the racing experience from Utah I hope to develop as much as I can while training and traveling with such a professional team. At the end of the day I’ve been given this opportunity to prove myself not only as a rider but also an individual and I am really hoping I’ll be able to achieve these objectives during my time as a stagiaire with Drapac.

“There’s no denying that the Tour of Utah is a massive step from Stratford to Dargo and it’s going to be tough but I’m really looking forward to the challenge!” he continued. “The quality of field in this race will offer exposure to some of the best riders in the world and it will give me an opportunity to experience what racing at this level is like.

“Above all, I’m looking forward to doing the best I can for the team,” Canty concluded. “It would be incredible if the team came away with a good result and if I were able to help contribute towards this, it would be very satisfying.”

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