April 1/03 6:44 am - Worlds to Move?, Laroche Goes Pro, New Drug, Hesjedal
Posted by Editor on 04/1/03
Worlds May Move to Montreal
It appears that the troubles facing the Hamilton Road Worlds with respect to cost sharing with the City of Hamilton may force the event to move to Montreal. The Worlds have been locked in a battle with the City for the past 6 weeks (see Daily News February 23/03 5pm EST - Hamilton 2003 Worlds: - Miscommunication and Misunderstanding).
We were told that the organization and the City were coming to an understanding, but it appears that talks have broken off, and that event organizers are threatening to take up an offer to move to Montreal. Daniel Manibal, organizer of the Women's Road World Cup in Montreal, has been in discussions with the Worlds organization regarding the logistics of moving the event to Montreal.
"No problem, we can do it." said Manibal. "The course (up Mont Royal) is one of the best in the world, and has been used for both a world championships and an Olympic Games."
Right now the talks are still tentative, but sources at the Worlds organization say that they have already sounded out the UCI about moving the event if necessary, and have received a cautious approval to proceed.
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Laroche Signs with Coast
Jean-Francois Laroche has signed a letter of intent to race for Team Coast, the Division 1 squad of former Tour winner Jan Ullrich. Laroche has recently ridden extremely well in France, and caught the attention of Coast manager Rudy Pevenage.
"This came much earlier then I expected!", stated Laroche, by telephone from Aigle, Switzerland, where he is currently attending a track training camp, in preparation for the South African leg of the Track World Cup. "I said that I wanted to race in Europe with a pro team (see March 30/03 6:25pm EST - Laroche 2nd at Canton de St-Ciers - in French report), but did not expect this!"
The recently turned 23 year old rider will join the team in May. "My schedule is not completely decided yet, but it is not likely that I will do the Tour in my first year. Possibly the Vuelta at the end of the season."
New Drug in Pro Peloton
The recent rash of crashes in the European pro peloton has been caused by a new drug that a number of riders have been experimenting with, according to research by the UCI. The bovine growth hormone, Bovine stomatitis papular (BS-P), causes the synaptic nerves to fire quicker in humans. However, it also cause spastic movements among the users, especially if the dosage is too high, thus leading to a number crashes within the peloton.
A spokesperson from the UCI medical commission said that both the UCI and the IOC are working on a test to detect BS-P, and are confident that one "will be found shortly".
Ryder Hesjedal Starts New Career
Pro mountain biker Ryder Hesjedal (Subaru-Gary Fisher) has just released a CD of rap tunes titled "Turn My Crank". Hesjedal, who can usually be found sporting a collection of gold chains while cruising around Victoria in his tricked out white Navigator, was approached by Wass Up Records to do a demo. Hesjedal was backed on his release by Shamoe, Doctor Dre and The Shep.
"It was totally unexpected, and first I turned them down. But they came back to me with some really good stuff, and I thought: 'I can do this, it's no different then nasty talking with the Euro boys at the Tour of Rhodes.' "
Songs on the disc include "Give Me Some of That Mud Love", "The Chain Gang" and "Victoria Rap". Reports are that the disc is selling well in local bike shops.
There is no truth to the rumour that Hesjedal and J. Lo have recently been together, according to Hesjedal. "We are just good friends."
Van Velzen May be Suspended
Min Van Velzen (Symmetrics) may possibly be suspended by the UCI for re-entering the Joe Hailey Memorial race after missing a lap. According to UCI Press Secretary Enrico Carpani, "Mr Verbruggen (UCI President) takes this type of transgression very seriously, and wants to send a message: do not go back into the break." There is no word yet on how this might affect Van Velzen's eligibility for Hamilton (or Montreal - see above).