Canadian Cyclist


November 21/05 9:09 am - Cycling Achievement Update, U.S. 'Cross, San Francisco GP Cancelled, Euro 'Cross

Posted by Editor on 11/21/05

Canadian Cycling Achievements

Yesterday we issued a request for discussion on what would be the top-ten Canadian cycling achievements, and asked for nominations. While there has been lots of discussion on the Forums, only one nomination has been sent in (to add to the list already generated) - Sam Whittingham for his two HPV (Human Powered Vehicle) World Records.

If you have a nomination to add to the list, please send it in to

The nomination should be for a specific accomplishment by an individual, whether it be a race victory, a consecutive streak, a world record, etc.

Clark Natwick GP/Crank Bros USGP #6 - San Francisco, CA

Lyne Bessette's ( Garneau) cyclo-cross winning streak ended at 12 on Sunday, when another Canadian - Wendy Simms (Kona) - rode away from the field at the start of the final race in the USGP series. Bessette won the overall series for women, while her husband Tim Johnson ( Garneau) lost the men's series title to Barry Wicks (Kona).

Millman Media report:

Completing a five-win run in the six-race Crank Brothers U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross, Team Garneau's Lyne Bessette wrapped up the overall 2005 USGP title on Sunday in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Lyne's teammate (and husband) Tim Johnson took the Series leader's jersey into the final race for the Elite Men, but came up one place short of claiming the season-long title, finishing right behind eventual winner Barry Wicks (Kona).

Under hot and dusty conditions, Lyne won Saturday's U.S. Gran Prix race in Santa Cruz, though the scorching heat, and the UCI rule preventing water bottle hand-ups during 'cross races, left her parched and drained by the finish. It was Lyne's 12th straight win of the season, but an even dozen proved the end to the Canadian champ's streak. Fellow Canadian Wendy Simms (Kona) turned the tables on Lyne on Sunday, winning in Golden Gate Park while Lyne felt sapped from the previous day's effort and heat. But Lyne's eventual third place spot in S.F. was more than enough to give Lyne the overall Series title.

"It was a really good course for [Wendy], that's for sure," said Lyne. "It was a mountain biker course. I made some mistakes and she didn't make any. I suffered like hell on Saturday. I managed to finish like 10 seconds ahead, but it took a lot out of me, that's for sure. I can't win every race, I'm not perfect and this is all learning for me. The whole Series went well, so that was a really positive thing for me."

After a solid fifth place in Santa Cruz, Tim went into Sunday's Series final with the white leader's jersey. But a horrible start on the rough and winding trails of Godlen Gate Park left Tim out of the top-20 after the first lap on Sunday. While Wicks was battling back near the front with time enough to finish third in a sprint over Mark McCormack (Team Clif Bar). But Wicks's second place was good enough to give him the overall Series win, with Tim taking second on the season.

"I had the worst first lap I've ever had, I felt like I was back at the beginning of the season when I had no UCI points and I started in the last row," said Tim of his frustrating start on Sunday. "After the first lap I put my head down and put whatever I had into the pedals. It was brutal out there, I crashed on the course three times pre-riding it. I went back to the basics of riding for lap times. I'm so psyched with my Series result, that's a second place I can be proud of. I didn't think I was going to be on the podium in the Series."

1 Wendy Simms (Kona)
2 Ann Knapp (Kona)
3 Lyne Bessette ( Garneau)
4 Barbara Howe (Velo Bella)
5 Melissa Thomas (Tokyo Joe's-GoLite)

1 Todd Wells (GT-Hyundai)
2 Barry Wicks (Kona)
3 Tim Johnson ( Garneau)
4 Mark McCormack (Team Clif Bar)
5 Eric Tonkin (Kona)

San Francisco Grand Prix Cancelled
Courtesy Threshold Sports

San Francisco Cycling, LLC, founder and organizer of the San Francisco Grand Prix professional cycling event, today (November 20th) announced that it is canceling the 2006 race scheduled for September 10.

Since its inception in 2001, the San Francisco Grand Prix has become one of the world's top professional bike races and highest ranked events on the UCI world cycling calendar. Economic impact surveys commissioned by the City of San Francisco and performed by Economics Research Associates on the 2004 and 2005 events indicates that the race has annually provided an average of $11.7 million in economic output, $9.3 million in direct spending and $429,500 in new tax revenues to the City. This is in addition to the approximately 40 million worldwide media impressions the event has generated each year. This September's race attracted top cyclists from a dozen countries including Tour de France runner-up, Ivan Basso, and virtually all of the USA's Tour de France finishers.

Despite the positive things the event brings to the city, San Francisco Cycling LLC in its five years of operating the race has been unable to resolve issues surrounding billing amounts and procedures for city services related to the annual event. "There is considerable uncertainty regarding the amounts we will be billed after each year's race, making it impossible to accurately forecast budgets or question charges beforehand," said SFC director, David Chauner. "On top of that, the periodic, emotionally charged Board of Supervisors' debates over the value of the event make potential sponsors very nervous. Few companies will sponsor a politically charged event and, when sponsors back out or can't be replaced, we have to cut important elements of the race, like eliminating the very popular women's event this year."

According to organizers, the ability to meet the annual costs to produce the event are entirely dependent on contributions from corporate sponsors, ideally Bay Area companies that want to support beneficial community events. Chauner says the Grand Prix provides opportunity for companies to give something back to the community and entertain customers, employees and their families at a popular citywide event but, he adds, "The most outspoken Supervisor calls this 'corporate welfare' and ignores the value the event brings to the city and to the many restaurants, hotels and businesses that benefit from race-related events".

Since 2001, San Francisco Cycling has paid City of San Francisco agencies and police a total $1,564,634 to stage the race. "This is a staggering amount, but we paid it in order to make this a world class event in a world class city." said Jerry Casale, Operations Director of the event. According to Casale, the most recent charges leveled by Supervisors and Daly and Peskin at the November 14 Audit and Oversight Committee that San Francisco Cycling LLC failed to pay its bills for the 2004 event were misleading. "We were faxed the final and adjusted SFPD bill for $89,924 for the first time on November 10, 2005, just one working day prior to that meeting, all other city charges had been paid before we got our ISCOTT permit for the 2005 race, it wouldn't have been issued otherwise", said Casale "And then they said we were late and purposely avoiding payment. That's simply not true."

According to Chauner, the decision to discontinue the race was not an easy one "Despite the overwhelming popularity of the San Francisco Grand Prix, we have had to evaluate its financial viability in terms of the market conditions, potential for revenue and cost of running a world class race in order to determine if it makes sense to continue let alone ever turn a profit. Sadly it's a no-win situation and we simply cannot go forward."

Superprestige 'Cross #4 - Asper-Gavere, Belgium

1 Sven Nys (Bel) Rabobank 58:00
2 Gerben De Knegt (Ned) AA drink-Bejan at 0:22
3 Enrico Franzoi (Ita) Lampre - Caffita 0:29
4 Bart Wellens (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 1:09
5 Erwin Vervecken (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 1:26
6 Richard Groenendaal (Ned) Rabobank 1:29
7 Davy Commeyne (Bel) Palmans-Sapim-Collstrop s.t.
8 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Rabobank 1:43
9 John Gadret (Fra) Chocolade Jacques 1:53
10 Wilant Van Gils (Ned) 2:16
11 Petr Dlask (Cze) Empella Czech Team s.t.
12 Jonathan Page (USA) Cervelo 2:27
13 Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Morgan Blue s.t.
14 Peter Van Santvliet (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 2:52
15 Tim Van Nuffel (Bel) AVB Asbestverwijdering 3:56
16 Kamil Ausbuher (Cze) Cyklo Team Budvar Tabor 4:18
17 David Derepas (Fra) s.t.
18 Radomir Simunek (Cze) 4:50
19 David Meys (Bel) Profel Cycling Team s.t.
20 Wim Jacobs (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 5:05
21 Darius Gil (Pol) Paged-MBK-Scout 5:25
22 Jan Verstraeten (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 5:30
23 Martin Zlamalik (Cze) Author Praha 6:07
24 Jorn Van der Veken (Bel)
25 Thijs Al (Ned) B & E Cycling Team
26 Arne Daelmans (Bel) Chocolade Jacques - T Interim
27 Camiel Van Den Bergh (Ned) Stevens Racing Team all s.t.
28 Cyrille Bonnand (Fra) at 1 lap
29 Marius Gil (Pol) Strzelce Krajenskie at 1 lap
30 Ronald Mutsaars (Ned) at 1 lap
31 Ronny Poelvoorde (Bel) Team Cont. at 1 lap
32 Anders Klinkby (Den) at 1 lap
33 Mario Lammens (Bel) at 3 laps
34 Geert Wellens (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team at 4 laps
35 Freddy De Meester (Bel) at 4 laps
36 Peter Damen (Bel) at 5 laps

1 Sven Nys (Bel) Rabobank 58 points
2 Bart Wellens (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 56
3 Gerben De Knegt (Ned) AA drink-Bejan 48
4 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Rabobank 39
5 Petr Dlask (Cze) Empella Czech Team 37
6 Erwin Vervecken (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 34
7 Tom Vannoppen (Bel) Palmans-Sapim-Collstrop 28
8 Wim Jacobs (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 23
10 Kamil Ausbuher (Cze) Cyklo Team Budvar Tabor 16
11 Camiel Van Den Bergh (Ned) Stevens Racing Team 15
11 Davy Commeyne (Bel) Palmans-Sapim-Collstrop 15
11 Richard Groenendaal (Ned) Rabobank 15
14 Tim Van Nuffel (Bel) AVB Asbestverwijdering 13
15 Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank 10
17 Wilant Van Gils (Ned) 9
18 Radomir Simunek (Cze) 8
19 Jan Verstraeten (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 7
19 John Gadret (Fra) Chocolade Jacques 7
21 Peter Van Santvliet (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 4
21 Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Morgan Blue 4
23 David Willemsens (Bel) WC Vos Sportief Sint 1


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