Posted by Editoress on 09/27/11
Some tidbits from the just completed Road Worlds, In Copenhagen:
• The Canadian Cycling Association (CCA), from my observations, can be congratulated for an excellent job of looking after the athletes. Long gone now are the days when riders were scrambling to take care of themselves; now they can just focus on competing. It shows with the increased depth and strong performances Canada had across a number of categories on the Road, Mountain Bike and Track this season. See our interview with CCA HP Director Jacques Landry Here.
• The UCI has shown that it is still unwilling to treat women's road equally with men. When the point was brought up that there should be minimum salary guarantees for pro women's teams (as there are with men's), it was quickly shot down by UCI President Pat McQuaid. Grants, women's cycling does not have the same depth nor sponsorship as on the men's side, but this would be a good starting point. Many top women still have to hold down jobs to support their cycling careers.
• Staying with women, the Australian WorldTour squad GreenEdge will have a women's team, and have reportedly picked up some of the riders from the now defunct HTC-Highroad squad including (unconfirmed) Judith Arndt, the world time trial champion. Canadian Martin Barras, a coach with the Australian national squad, is assisting with the initial set up.
• GreenEdge, although it has not been announced, will be picking up Canadian Christian Meier who, along with Andrew Pinfold, did not have his contract renewed at UnitedHealthcare. Pinfold says he expects to announce his team plans to us 'soon'. It won't be SpiderTech, we understand.
• The worst kept secret in cycling right now is that Mark Cavendish will ride for Sky next year. This sets up an interesting conflict for the team at the Tour: do they support Cavendish and go for stage wins (and the Green Jersey), or stay with their goal of Bradley Wiggins as the Tour winner. Given the success of Cavendish (and lack of by Wiggins this year), it should be a no-brainer, but the team announced a long time ago that they expected to have a Tour winner within five years...
• It was bittersweet Worlds for HTC-Highroad, which took three of four elite titles (both Elite TT titles and the Elite men's road title), but is now gone, all because title sponsor HTC decided to try and play brinksmanship games over sponsorship dollars, not recognizing the fact that riders can't afford to wait around forever. They gambled and cycling lost one of the most successful teams ever (both men and women).