Saturday, 31 May 2014

Adrien Costa from USA National Team won both today's stages of Tour du pays de Vaud and is now the race leader with decent advantage over Kevin Geniets from Luxembourg. William Barta, Costa's teammate, is currently third.

Adrien Costa in yellow jersey (photo: @USACjuniors)

If you are reading this blog you probably already heard about Adrien Costa . Young American achieved outstanding results at the American cycling scene before his sixteenth birthday. The number of his victories in amateur races is almost a legend. This season, Adrien has scored victory in the Tour of the Gila (won three of the five stages) and many other . All of these successes , however, were impossible to compare to racing in Europe. Even tough in u17 category Costa had some decent results on the Old Continent, but only rivalry among juniors in Europe was suppose to verify his talent. And what happened once Costa came to Europe ?

Time trial podium (photo: @USACjuniors)


Adrien won two stages on Tour du pays de Vaud at the same day! In the morning he crossed the line alone in Les Diablerets after a difficult ascent near the finish with an impressive advantage over Kevin Geniets who came second (+1:36). In the afternoon, young American won the hilly time trial , beating his team-mate and at the same time one of the best specialists in the time trial in u19 category, William Barta. One day, two different stages, two dominating victories.

His victory in the race is almost sealed and it remains only a matter of time when Adrien Costa wins again. He is one of the biggest prospects in the junior category in recent years. If next season will focus on the European races , we can expect dominance as Bob Jungels of 2010.

Friday, 30 May 2014

William Barta from United States National Team won the first stage of Tour du pays de Vaud after sprint from the leading group. Dane Jonas Gregaard was second and Patrick Müller came third. Youth Gino Mäder is the new leader after finishing third in prologue and seventh today.

Gino Mäder in the yellow jersey (photo: @tourpaysvaud)

Tommorow we can expect more shake ups in overall since riders will face mountainous stage to Les Diablerets with difficult ascent near the finish and short time trial in the evening. Adrien Costa finished in the lead group today but with another time trial i bet on today's winner, Will Barta for the overall.

Results:

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Swiss rider Valentin Kiser have won the opening ultra-short prologue of 46th edition of Tour du pays de Vaud run in Yverdon city this evening. Rest of podium places were filled by his countrymen: Nico Selanti was second and Gino Mader came third.

Swiss podium of prologue (photo: @tourpaysvoud)
Full results:


Tommorow riders will face hilly stage between Dompierre and Romanel-sur-Lausanne with total length of 92.7km. Some of the notable starters: Nico Selanti, Tom Wirtgen, Julius van den Berg, William Barta, Patrick Muller, Jonas Gregaard and the one and only Adrien Costa. It's his first big race in Europe in u19 category and i'm really interested in what can he achieve.

Roadbook

Young Norwegian Erlend Blikra won the French race Le Trophée Centre Morbihan part of the Uci Nations Cup for juniors. Second place in the overall standings took Russian Nicolay Cherkasov and the third Dane X Nikias Larsen.

Final race podium (photo: @directvelo)

The riders competed in three stages played last weekend. On Saturday, they had to overcome a hilly stage with a length of 93.7 km. On Sunday they faced short time trial in the morning and a decisive stage to Locminé later on.

Saturday's stage finished with a bunch sprint won by the race winner Erlend Blikra who beat the French favorite Damien Touze and the Dutchman Sjoerd Bax on the line.

Erlend Blikra's impressive sprint (photo: Camille Nicol)

Despite many attempts to attack in the initial phase of stage Norwegian team was in control of field and did not allow any serious escapes in first part of the stafe. At 41km to the finish Italians tried to split the field with attack from three of their riders. The leaders formed a group composed Pedersen (Denmark), Kumar (Slovenia), Plebani, Moschetti, Rocchetti (Italy ), Shatovkin (Russia), Sureda Morey (Spain) and Dunbar ( Ireland). To dangerous escape joined by two favorites: Erlend Blikra and Magnus Bak Klaris . The advantage , however, did not exceed more then 30 seconds, and the group was caught up 22km before the finish . Emiel Planckaert and Sjoerd Bax tried to stay away in the last kilometers, but were overtaken almost at the finish line.

The time trial on Sunday's morning from Reguiny to Naizin a length of 7.2km was decisive for overall win. The impressive victory took a leader, Erlend Blikra, who defeated an excellent time trialer Russian Nicolay Cherkasov  by 19 seconds. Third place went to another Russian Petr Rikunov, 21 seconds behind Blikra.

Filippo Rocchetti (photo: @directvelo)
The last stage was dominated by spectacular ride from the Norwegian team. They controlled the course of the whole stage, for a long time did not allow any breakways to go. They cleared dangerous action of nine riders with Nicolay Cherkasov and managed to keep the race lead for Erlend Blikra. In the last three kilometers of the stage attacked Filippo Rocchetti (Italy), Emiel Planckaert (Belgium) and Eddie Dunbar (Ireland), which maintained the advantage to the finish. Italian Rocchetti have won the stage. The peloton of Blikrą lost 15 seconds and the Norwegian kep his yellow jersey. He also won the points and youth classifications. The climebrs jersey went to Tom Wirtgen from Luxembourg.

Results:



Gallery

I'm really impressed by how Blikra and whole Norwegian team rode last weekend. The first stage win for Blikra was very convincing but it was the time trial that was decisive for GC. 19 seconds on 7.2km course is pretty big advantage but without help from his team it would be probably very hard to keep the leader's jersey on final stage.

Good to see Cherkasov back in action. He did well last season and i was expecting decent results from him this year. He dnf'ed in Roubaix but looks like he's fully recovered and going to be a dangerous rider in stage races.

Magnus Bak Klaris didn't have a chance to show his level since his time trial skills are not so great. He finished 14th and tried to split the field on first stage but it was all decided by sprints in both first and third stage. Better luck next time.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Dutchman Peter Lenderink won 33rd edition of the Int. Junioren Driedaagse van Axel (2.1). Second place went to Germany Jan Tschernoster and the third to another Dutchman Bram Welten.

Final podium with all the jerseys winners (photo: cyclingsite.be)

On the first day of competition the cyclists had to face a less than 100km stage from Sluiskill to Axel. The riders went through the six sections of cobblestones, which were decisive for the stage results. Jurjen van der Velde went into solo breakaway in the early kilometers of the race but was caught up. On the last lap at the front was a group of sixteen riders. Five of them made a counter attack: Jorn Buning, Dennis van Leeuwen, Andreas Jeppersen, Max Kanter and Bob Olieslage. They worked well together and kept the small gap to the rest of leading group almost untill the finish. The fugitives were, however, overtaken almost at the end of the stage and sprint from the front group won the Belgian Dennis Delmotte, which was also the first leader of the race.

Dennis Delmotte winning the first stage (photo: cyclingsite.be)
On the second day of competition for riders faced a short time trial in the morning and stage around the town of Axel later in the afternoon.

The morning time trial won Senne Leysen from Belgium, bronze medalist in this year's Belgian National Championships in time trial, ahead of Peter Lenderink and German rider, Jan Tschernoster. The leader after the first day, Dennis Delmotte has lost nearly a minute and went down in the overall standings to ninth place. The new leader was Lenderink.

Dennis Delmotte during the time trial (photo: cyclingsite.be)
The afternoon stage began with a series of accidents before neutralization. Then we had another crash ... and a few accidents. Rainy conditions with cobblestones effectively split the peloton into smaller groups, which, however, in the final phase of the stage began to connect, and at less than 10km from the finish line we had a big peleton at the front. Less than 5km from the finish line, just before the beginning of the last section of cobbles,  two riders attacked from the main group: Thimo Willems and Tohmas Joseph, who managed to keep the lead until the finish line. Willems won. Sprint third place in the peloton won Enzo Wouters. Lenderink retained the leader's jersey.

Last "queen stage" traditionally started from the accident. This time the leader Peter Lenderink went down but quickly returned to the peloton. Andreas Stokbro, Aleksandr Martyshev and Jack Maddux went into the breakway of the day and kept the lead for most of the stage and collected the points in the climber competition. Martyshev as the last man from the breakway at the fron but was caught by the main group before the beginning of the last lap. Alone attacked Brent Briesen, who held about 20 seconds over the peloton but was caught. Thimo Willems and Wouter Persoon counterattacked from the peloton and managed to stay away from the leading group with yellow jersey. This time Willems lost a two man sprint and it was Persoon who won the stage.

Peter Lenderink leading the group on hill (photo: cyclingsite.be)
Wouter Persoon (photo: cyclingsite.be)

Lenderink arrived in the group with a loss of 34 seconds and kept the lead in the overall standings. The second place thanks to it's excellent time trial took Germany Jan Tschernoster and the third Bram Welten, who also won two jerseys: for the best young rider and for a sprinter.

Full results:

Former speed skater Lenderink was my favorite from the Dutchies to win in this race and did not disappoint me. After several victories in amateur races Dutchman confirmed his class on the international arena. It wasy pretty impressive for him to kept the lead in the race during the queen stage despite the many attacks on his position.

Jan Tschernoster showed up in the race from uci calendar for the first time this season, but has already won  in the criterium Frühjahrsrennen in Herford and finished third in the time trial Junioren Cottbus, where  Lennard Kamna won. Also it was a great race for Bram Welten. Two jerseys and a podium place in GC is a great results for youth rider.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Today juniors begin competition in the Netherlands in the Int. Junioren Driedaagse van Axel. Meanwhile, tommorow starts another (third already) stage race of uci Nations Cup for juniors, Le Trophée Centre Morbihan. Held in the French department of Morbihan, a two-day race consists of two hilly stages and a short individual time trial.
The winner of last year's edition was further world champion Mathieu van der Poel.

Mathieu van der Poel (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)
On Saturday, riders will go over a distance of 97.2 km from Malachappe Pluvigner to Brec'h. After passing first 47 km on the hilly terrain riders enter into the final circits with a length of 9.9 km around the city Brec'h near Auray. Along the route there are three categorized climbs, two of them with category 2 (basically false flat: 2.7 km long with avg 1.9%), and the Cote de Scoulboch (1.8 km, avg. 5.4%) in the initial phase of the stage.

stage one map (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)

stage one profile (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)


The second day of competition will certainly be decisive. Morning riders will face a short,  seven kilometers long, very fast time trial from Reguiny to Naizin. A year ago on the same route triumphed Remi Cavagna.

stage two map (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)

stage two profile (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)

In the afternoon decisive stage of Colpo to Locminé a length of 105.7 km will be held. Like the Saturday stage it can be divided into two parts: the first 70km leads through hilly terrain with three climbs: Cote de Ihuelgoët (2.6 km, avg. 3.5%), Cote de Châteaubriant (1.9 km, avg. 3.5% ). Both of these bonuses are in the initial phase of stage It will create a great opportunity to escape. In the middle stage of riders waiting for the last ascent: Coté de Loperhet (1.6km, avg. 4.8%) and then fust run in into Locminé.

stage three map (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)

stage three profile (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)

Last year's stage finished in Locminé won Frenchman Etienne Fabre.

Etienne Fabre winning stage 3 (photo: tropheecentremorbihan.fr)
Final results 2013:

The peloton this year's Le Trophée Centre Morbihan consists of sixteen national teams. Despite being played at the same time as Driedaagse van Axel Dutch team send very strong squad, led by the winner of this year's GP Andre Noyelle Mitchell Cornelisse and talented young rider Pascal Eenkhoorn. The French certainly will play leading roles in their own territory, the leader should be Damien Touze, who didn't have  many opportunities to present his talent on the international level this year.

Other notable starters:

Maxime de Pooter, Tom Wirtgen, Aleksandr Kulikovskii, Erlend Blikra, Tobias Foss and Adam toupalik

At the start list also appears Klaris Magnus Bak, who was supposed to start in 3dAxel at the same time. It seems that we will have to wait until the start of the Dutch race to find out where the start-talented Dane.

Two weeks after a difficult mountain race Course de la Paix junior peloton split into two important races played on the same weekend . Part of the riders will head to France for a weekend Le Trophée Centre Morbihan. The rest are heading to the Netherlands for the 33rd edition of Driedaagse van Axel .

podium 2013 (photo:http://www.juniorendriedaagse.nl/) 

Beginning on Friday, in the region of Flanders Zeelandic race is an opportunity to demonstrate their skills for strong, fast riders with decent time trial at least.

Tao Hart leading the group (photo: http://www.juniorendriedaagse.nl/)
Riders on cobbles (photo:http://www.juniorendriedaagse.nl/)

The four-stage race will begin on Friday in the town of Sluiskil. After driving 99.6 km riders will complete the stage in Axel . On the flat route there are three time bonuses and eigth cobbled sections , the last of which is less than 3km from the finish line.

On the second day the riders will compete in two stages (it is worth mention that this is a very popular form in the junior races ) . Morning face off from short, not very technical time trial in the streets of Axel . In the afternoon, juniors will face very similar route to the first one, flat with bonifications and sections of cobbles,  the last of which is again less than 3km from the finish line.  Last year the two stages of mass start ending in Axel won the Dane Michael Carbel Svendgaard.

Last, Sunday's stage will be decisive for the general classification. Peleton will face a similar distance as in earlier days, 93.2 km around the city Valzeke . On the route , however, there will be three difficult climbs :

- Valkenberg ( 540m , avg . 8% , max 12%)
- Leberg ( 950m , avg . 4.2 % , max 13.8 %)
- Langendries ( 1000m , avg . 6.2 % , max 10%)

And false flat (3%) Paddestraat cobbled section with a length of 1,800 meters .

The riders will ride each section of cobbles four times, the last time Paddestraat will go through with less than 2km to the finish . The last fourth uphill Langendries is located 8km from the finish .

A year ago at this stage the general classification was decided. Eight riders finished in front without the race leader Carbel Svendgaard . Stage won his compatriot , Mathias Rask Jeppessen which, thanks to a good ride on the TT stage was the winner of the race.

Final results 2013:


Startlist is very impressive. We will find the clubs from Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Germany and national teams: Poland, Russia, USA and Azerbaijan.

The number one favorite is definitely Magnus Bak Klaris . The winner of this year's Paris Roubaix should feel great on cobbles, hellingen and short time trial.

Among the Dutchies i would put my money on Bram Welten and Peter Lenderink. Both have solid results this year and would love to show their talent on home ground. In bunch sprints Enzo Wouters is the man to beat for sure.

Other notable starters:

Wiebren Plovie, Gianni Wytinck, Zeke Mostov, Brent Briesen, Charlie Arimont and Senne Leysen.

Race website
Startlist
Twitter
Roadbook

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Giro d'Italia time trial underway, i've decided to post links to intermedtiate times (not top 10 but full results) so you can easliy spot you favorite riders. The way it's shown is far from being perefect but stil better than nothing :)


Stage 12 (ITT) » Barbaresco › Barolo (42.2k/26.2m)

Km. 12,6 Boscasso (4ª)

Km 26,2 Alba

Barolo (finish)


Stage 19 (MTT) » Bassano de Grappa › Cima Grappa (26.8k/16.7m) 

Km 7.5 Semonzetto

Km 19.3 Campo Croce

Cima Grappa (finish)

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

New entry on my blog after a long break is a good opportunity to take look at several smaller races played recently.

Initially, the Smaller races reviews was dedicated for events outside the UCI calendar . However, the two races held in recent times, in spite of category x.1 uci , fit perfectly into this theme.

The first is the Memorial Dimitar Yankov. The three-day race played in Bulgaria last weekend for the first time in its history had a uci category 2.1. Despite this  the field is not too strong,mostly from Balkan region. For me, the riders in the top places are completely anonymous. But back to the race itself , the best rider was for sure Dusan Rajovic from Serbia. He won two stages , both won by solo attack. On the last stage ended with the pack finish he was second and sealed his victory in the general classification. Quite impressive result, especially when you consider that Rajovic is born in 1997. Rajovic took part in the Tour of Istria ( sixth place in the final stage ) and the Course de la Paix this year. Let's see what will show later in the season, the name to remember for sure .

Final podium (photo: focus-sport.net)
Results:


The second event of the UCI category was the 26th edition of the Italian classic Trofeo Guido Dorigo. The winner, after a solo attack in the race finale, it was Riccardo Verza, first-year junior, for whom this was the third win of the season but first in the race UCI ranking. The riders had to overcome the distance of 137km. Shortly after takeoff formed escape composed Grigoryi Sthein, Maxim Satlikov (both Kazakhstan) and Jon Bozic of Slovenia. Three remained at the forefront of approximately 80 km. In the end, riders faced circuit with three short but steep climbs including Muro di Ca' del Poggoio (the same one will be run on the 18th stage of this year Giro d'Italia) that broke the peloton and gave the opportunity for Verza to attack. Rocco Fugiano and Tiziano Lanza completed the podium.

Riccardo Verza (photo: ciclismo.info)
Results:


In early May, the Isle of Man played one of the most important stage races for juniors in the British Isles, Sleepwell Hotels Isle of Man Youth Tour. A three-stage race started on Friday evening ultra-short prologue (1.29 miles) on the promenade in Douglas won by one of the best specialists in time trials, Matthew Gibson

Matthew Gibson solo win on stage three (photo:britishcycling.org.uk) 
The second stage held on Saturday consisted of 11 rounds played in a hilly area with a length of 9.3 km each. On the second lap eight riders wento into breakaway, including stage winner Joe Evans, who attacked on the penultimate ascent and won solo, three seconds over two Alex Dalton and Matthew Bostock. The peloton with the current race leader Gibson have lost 33 seconds.

The last stage of the race played on Sunday at a distance of 92km around the town of Ramsey won the Matthew Gibson beating Nathan Draper at the finishline. Joe Holt brought the peloton, who finished 20 seconds after the duo. Stage win and a 20-second lead allowed Gibson to jump into third place in the overall standings. Race won by Joe Evans, the second was Matthew Bostock.


Last weekend also played the second round of the Challange National juniors. Race Boucles du Canton de Trélon was decided on the first day already on the time trial of 13.6 kilometers around the Towns Anor. The winner was Corentin Ermenault for which it was already the second victory in the time trial in Challange National. Previously won the Tour du Canton d'Aurignac. Jeremy Defaye was second, Louis Louvet third. 

Race podium (photo: directvelo)

The second stage ended with the finish of the big peleton. Adrien Carpenter won before Damien Touze and Enzo Boisset. General classification has not changed much. The top three from time trials retained their places on the podium of the race.

Full results:

Le Trophée Centre Morbihan is coming this weekend so stay tuned for race preview!

Sunday, 11 May 2014

The hardest race of the season have come to an end and it's a good time for summary since we were able to watch most of the biggest names in juniors category in last few days on Czech and German roads.

Magnus Bak Klaris continues the series of win for Denmark in Course de la Paix. They have won fourth edition in a row. In addition young Dane collected same double as Mads Pedersen last year: Paris Roubaix and Course de la Paix. If you win on cobbles and few weeks later on climbs then you have to be a great talent, that's for sure.

Aurelien Paret Peintre, leader of U19Z ranking, have his limits. He's time trial performance was quite poor and that's the only reason he didn't fight for victory in Course de la Paix as he was one of the strongest on the climbs and helped a lot to Rayane Bouhanni during the queen stage.

Rayane Bouhanni is the biggest revelation of the race. He can climb and time trial and can further develop into gc rider (kinda opposite to his brother but Rayane is stil very young so you never know). In juniors there are no massive specializations like in elite but rider who show high skill in every terrain could turn into a great pro. Just look at Magnus Cort Nielsen who won mountain queen stage on Course de la Paix and now he's winning bunch sprints in elite/u23 races or Tao Hart, who's pure climber but a year ago he was one of the best riders on cobbles during Paris Roubaix.

Lennard Kamna missed  great opportunity for a win in Course de la Paix when he didn't escape with the best four on queen stage. I dont know if he was struggling when they attacked or he just missed the move but that cost him overall win or podium at least.

Igor Decraene is not going to be time trial dominator this year as he was already beaten by Barta and track specialist Matthew Gibson. That was the first round of battle for top junior time trialer title and i'm looking forward how it will develop later this season.

Alessandro Fedeli is the guy to watch from Italy. He won Piccola SanRemo this year after solo escape and now he finished 5th in GC of the hardest race in the calendar. 

Next big race is Le Trophée Centre Morbihan (2.Ncup), weekend race in France starts on 24.05.
click here

Magnus Bak Klaris won the 43rd edition of Course de la Paix thanks to his second place in final stage around Terezin. Polish rider Patryk Soliński won the final stage, Bak Klaris was second and Yuri Colonna from Italy finished third.

Cycle event
Patryk Soliński winning the last stage (photo: PatRESS.cz)

Young Dane won the overall classification by twelve seconds ahead of Rayane Bouhanni from France and 31 seconds ahead of Will Barta from USA. Danish rider also won the points classification, just one point ahead of Erlend Blikra from Norway. Pascal Eenkhoorn won the mountains classification after great fight with Brit James Shaw during the race. The Best young rider was Tobias Foss from Norway.

Final podium (photo: PatRESS.cz)

The final duel between Bak Klaris and Bouhanni went wrong very early for Frenchmen who crashed just after the start on wet roads. Later on both riders managed to get 3 seconds of bonuses during the stage so heading into the stage final sprint their time in gc was still equal! But with wet and windy conditions in the finale Magnus Bak Klaris managed to stay in the front and finished second in Terezin. Peleton splitted in the last kilometers and Bouhanni was left behind and finished in second group six seconds behind Bak.

Denmark team celebrating (photo: PatRESS.cz)

Results:


That's it. One of the most important stage races for juniors have come to an end. Thanks for all the visits on my blog and for all the kind words about my work! Later on i will post my thoughts about the race so don't forget to visit my blog in the evening :)

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Swede Eriksson Lukas won the queen stage of the Course de la Paix 2014 beating at the finish the Dane Magnus Bak Klaris, winner of this year's Paris Roubaix  and Frenchman Aureilien Paret Paintre. Rayane Bouhanni, younger brother of FDJ sprinter Nacer is the new leader. Rayane finished fourth today, four seconds behind the leading trio.

Today's podium (photo: zmj.cz)

The riders had to overcome the distance of 102 km between Teplice and the German town of Zinwald . For the last forty kilometers awaited them two climbing to Komáří vížka ski station with one just before the finish. At the foot of the final climb Bak Klaris and Bouhanni attacked. They gained 25" advantage but later on Swede Eriksson and Paret Peintre bridged to the leaders. The cooperation between the escapers was very good and four remained an advantage to the finish line . Swede Eriksson was the fastest, but the fourth Bouhanni was the new leader with the same time as Bak Klaris. Tomorrow we gonna see passionate fight for victory in the race. The former leader Matthew Gibson lost 1:20 to winner and dropped to seventh place in the overall standings . Disputes impact on such a large loss was a defect before the first climb on Komáří vížka . The best Czech rider was once again Adam Toupalik who finished seventh today and he is 12th in GC.

Brief results:

1. Lucas Eriksson (Sweden) 2:44:31
2. Magnus Klaris (Denmark)
3. Aurélie Paret Peintre (France)
4. Rayane Bouhanni (France) +0:04
5. Mark Padun (Ukraine)

General:

1. Rayane Bouhanni (Francie) 6:55:33
2. Magnus Klaris (Dánsko)
3. William Barta (USA) +0:16
4. Lennard Kämna (Německo) +0:21
5. Igor Decraene (Belgie) +0:29

Full results

Rayane Bouhanni in yellow (photo @TourDeJose)
Tommorow's the final stage for sprinters but with no gap between Bouhanni and Klaris we can expect big fight between them for sprint bonuses.

Friday, 9 May 2014

British rider Matthew Gibson have won the morning individual time trial in the Course de la Paix Juniors 2014. William Barta from United States was second loosing 12" to Gibson. Current World Champion Igor Decraene finished third, 16" back. Gibson is now the new leader of the race. The best Czech rider was once again Adam Toupalik who finished 24th, +55".

Igor Decraene on the course (photo: PatRESS.cz)

Matthew Gibson on his way for the win (photo: PatRESS.cz)

Time trial podium (photo: PatRESS.cz)
Results:



The afternoon 63km long stage around Roudnice nad Labem won Erlend Blikra. Young Norwegian won the bunch sprint ahead of Aleksandr Kulikovskiy from Russia and Corentin Ermenault from France. Race leader Matthew Gibson finished fourth and still leads the overall.

Afternoon stage podium (photo:Ottar Ackenhausen Renholt) 

Tomorrow the riders are going to fight on the decisive stage of the race. Juniors will face two difficult mountain premiums situated on the last fourty kilometers of the stage. The finish will be held in the German town of Zinwald. Stage beginning in Teplice will be the real test for Matthew Gibson, who unexpectedly defeated the current time trial world champion today. German rider Lennard Kamna, winner of the Queen stage of the Tour of Istria, is close in GC and he's my bet as the favorite for tomorrow. Let's see what will show talented Erlend Blikra, but the Croatian race showed that in the mountains his level is limited. After today's individual time trial we know hat weakness Paret Peintre has. Among Frenchmen Valentin Madouas can be dangerous tommorow.

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Italian junior Gianmarco Begnoni won the first stage of Course de la Paix Juniors (2.Ncup) around Litoměřice town after sprint from a big group. Youth Norwegian Erlend Blikra finished second and Paris Roubaix winner Magnus Bak Klaris from Denmark finished third.French rider Valentin Madouas is leading the sprint classification while Brit James Shaw took the red and white jersey for the best climber.

photo: PatRESS.cz
Results:



We had a breakaway of two during the stage: youth Denys Morozov from Ukraine and Sjoerd Bax from the Netherlands but the peleton controlled the advantage and caught the leaders in the final kilometers. French team showed their strength in numbers with Ermenault finishing 6th, Paret Peintre 8th, Bouhanni 9th, Fabre 15th and Madouas 20th! Could be a factor on the queen stage. It's not the first win for Begnoni this season as he already won three races in Italian scene for juniors. Best Czech rider finished nineteenth (junior cyclocross champion Adam Toupalik).

Here is what the winner says after the stage:

I am extremely happy because to win a stage of the Peace Race was always my big dream come true in the very first stage. I'm not a climber, so keep the yellow jersey and win the race by the tantamount to a miracle. Rather, I would like to win one of the next stages in the mass range which suits me more.
Tommorow riders will face two stages: time trial in the morning (Igor Decraene time to shine) and hilly stage in the evening. 

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

The day before first Grand Tour of the season starts, junior riders are going to start their own "Grand Tour" four-day, five stage Course de la Paix aka The Peace Race, one of the hardest and most prestigious stage race for juniors and part of the Nations Cup calendar for ten years already running through Czech Republic and Germany.


The first junior edition was held in 1965 and is running every year since 1974. Some of the big names showed their talent in previous editions like Kwiatkowski (who won twice in a row), Kreuziger or Kangert. Last year it was Mads Pedersen who won the race thanks to time trial and solid run on the hardest stages. He also won the final sprinters stage in Terezín showing his incredible versatility. Logan Owen was second and Mathieu Van der Poel finished third.
Final podium from 2013

Course de la Paix 2014 begins with a hilly 98.7km stage starting and finishing in Litomerice featuring two categorised climbs near Murakov. Lasy year Mathieu Van der Poels have beaten Pedersen and Van Hooydonck in sprint for the stage win.


The next day riders will challenge two stages. Morning individual time trial 11.6km long around Třebenice and hilly stage around Roudnice nad Labem with uphill finish on the last few houndred meters in the afternoon.



Last year the Danes dominated the time trial with three riders in top four. Mads Pedersen won the stage ahead of Andreas Holm Gylling and Logan Owen. The afternoon stage ended with a bunch sprint with British duo Germain Burton and Chris Lawless showed their speed and achieved the top two places. Pedersen completed the podium.

The third stage is going to be the hardest one. Riders will cross the border to Germany. The queen stage start in Teplice and end in the German town of Zinwald with two ascents of the 900m Komárí Vížka climb. The stage is going to be 20km longer than last year with two climbs in final 40 kilometer with a total distance of 101.8km. Last year Elie Gesbert won solo ahead of group of top favorities including Tao Hart, Pedersen and Van der Poel.



Elie Gesbert winning solo the Queen stage last year

The final stage of the race will be traditionally run around Terezín city with three climbs on the 99.8km circuit.
Last year on the same route whole peleton came together to the finish line and Mads Pedersen won and sealed his overall victory.


Race as for the category is played in very difficult terrain with climbs at every stage and difficult mountaintop finish on the third stage plus the individual time trial test on the morning of the second day. Adding to the cast of the national teams with the best riders from each country on the start in Litomerice  this is one of the most challenging and prestigious race in this age category. The winner at once can be called the leading rider among juniors.

Startlist
Roadbook
Website

Notable starters:

Adam Toupalik, James Shaw, Matthew Gibson, Yuri Colonna, Lorenzo Fortunato, Igor Decreane, Senne Leysen, Martin Palm, Erlend Blikra, Pascal Eenkhoorn, Mitchel Cornelisse, Magnus Bak Klaris, Lennard Kamna, Aurelien Paret Peintre, Lucas Eriksson.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Short ranking explanation, the new addition to my blog.

I really enjoy creating and reading every kind of rankings so i decided to create my own with top 10 best juniors through 2014 season. You can ask is it really necessery to create another ranking if we already have a good one on PCS site. But the difference is that on PCS there are only uci rated races and with juniors there is always a problem to compare riders who ride five or six races on international level with those who ride only once or twice. And that's where my ranking goes.

Here's the first record of my rank. It was the hardest one because top riders didn't have many chances to compete with each other (actually they won't have many during the season i guess). The top places goes to winners of uci rated races (Ncup especially) but i will also try to consider smaller races particualry those with strong and international field.

I will try to post further editions of the ranking once in a month or so, can't promise it will be regular since it depends of my free time.

Here you can find the ranking:

U19Z junior ranking™ 2014

Enjoy!

Monday, 5 May 2014

Three weeks after the first post about smaller junior races i have decided to add few more since the season got under way pretty heavy now with more and more junior races run every week.

Tour du Canton d’Aurignac is the first event of Challenge National Juniors series of racing in France. Most of the top French juniors showed on the startline in Boussan for two day event with time trial on saturday and road race the day after. Corentin Ermenault from Picardie have won the time trial and become the first leader. Ermenault continues his impressive series of results after being fifth in Bernaudeau Junior and seventh in Paris Roubaix. Rayane Bouhanni (younger brother of Nacer) was second and Valentin Madouas was third.

The rainy stage two won Dorian Godon, 3" ahead of Madouas and 5" ahead of Cedric Le Mouel. Peret Peintre was fourth. Corentin Ermenault didn't finish the second stage and Madouas have won the GC ahead of Jeremy Defaye and Sebastien Havot.

Dorian Godon (photo: u19racingteam.fr)

Full results on Directvelo: Stage 1 & Stage 2


Tour du Léman juniors is a montainous stage race held on the boarder of France and Switzerland around the Geneva Lake with pretty solid lineup with juniors from France, Switzerland and Italy on the start. In 2013 Aurelien Peret-Peintre was the final winner. Yuri Colonna from Team Franco Ballerini have won the first stage, 12km long time trial in Aigle. Another Italian Andrea Biondi won the second stage after two men sprint against Swiss Patrick Müller. Colonna finished in the bunch and kept the leader's jersey.

The next day we had an interesting stage: 9,6km road race on the ascent of Montée de la Coisette. Victor Lafay from France have won with over a minute advantage on another Frenchman Gabin Fine and Patrick Müller. Colonna finished nineth and was dropped to fourth place in GC. Lafay become the new leader. The final stage won Alessandro Mariani with Lafay winning the overall ahead of Müller and Martin Schaeppi.

Final podium
More info about the race on the website: Tour du Léman


Ster Van Zuid-limburg is probably one of the most important non uci rated races for juniors. Held in Belgium always brought up solid international field. The 35th edition of the race run in South Limburg was a three day event with 6.8 km time trial as an opener in Borlo. If there was a time trial in Belgian race who else could win it if not the current World Champion ? Decraene have beaten Senne Leysen by 11 seconds and Bryan Bousser by 13. The second stage around Landen ended with successful breakway of five riders. Maxime De Poorter have won the stage ahead of Jonas Gregaard and Kenny Molly. Decraene wasn't the part of escape and lost his leader's jersey to Martin Palm who finished fifth on the stage.

The final stage ended up with reduced sprint from a group of around thirty riders. Robbe Ghys was the fastest. The bonification gave him seventh place in the overall and the jersey for best young rider. Martin Palm finished safely in the bunch and won the GC ahead of Gregaard and Decraene. There was a long list of junior's big names on the start in Borlo like Shaw, Kreder and Pedersen but they didin't manage to beat the locals and finished little further in the overall without stage win either. Decraene was third also in 2013 edition where he was beaten by two Danes: Egsvang and Mads Pedersen.

Robbe Ghys winning the final stage (photo: cyclingsite.be)

Results and more info: Ster Van Zuid-limburg

Meanwhile despite the crash Decrane defended his title in Belgium National Championships in time trial. Martin Palm was second and Sene Leysen third. It was already fifth win for Decreane this season.

Adrien Costa maintains the status of one of the biggest cycling talents after winning three (from five) stages in Tour of Gila.

Rider from Verona, Alessandro Fedeli (Ausonia CSI Pescantina) won the 31st edition of Gran Premio Sportivi di Sovilla aka Piccola SanRemo (Piccola Strade Bianche would fit better as the race is going through gravel sections) after a solo breakway. Francesco Romano (GS Caneva) finished second and Giacomo Giuliani (UC Porto Sant'Elpidio) was third. All top ten were Italians.

Alessando Fedeli on the attack

Gravel section

Alessandro Fedeli solo

Sprint for second


Results: