Thomas de Gendt (Lotto Soudal) can't wait to race at the Criterium du Dauphine. He's been holed up in an altitude training camp for 17 days and it sounds like he's had better times.

 

"The centre were we stayed only serves healthy food, even the desserts don’t contain much sugar.

"You can’t get tempted. It is remote. But to kill the time on rest days I had my Playstation. Also films were a welcome distraction and the Giro; it was even more fun to watch our teammates do so well.

"Most of the time I go on a training camp all by myself, but now there were three teammates with me, a mechanic and a soigneur. At home or during an individual training camp I clean my bike myself, but now the mechanic made sure my bike was ready in the morning.

"Vincent Monserez, our soigneur, bought fresh fruit and prepared our shakes for after training. It’s beneficial for the recovery that you don’t have to take care of it all after a long endurance training.”

 

Yep, sounds riveting. 

 

 

But it's all been worth it. 

"I already notice that the training camp did me well."

"I didn’t specifically focus on the Dauphiné, though. In this race I want to set a step forward in my preparation for the Tour, just like I intended with the training camp. You can’t stage race circumstances while training, you need a race to get in top condition."

Lotto Soudal for the Criterium du Dauphine: Kris Boeckmans, Bart De Clercq, Thomas De Gendt, Jens Debusschere, Gert Dockx, Tony Gallopin, Tomasz Marczynski and Louis Vervaeke.

 

Saturday 4 Jun 2016

The Cyclistes Professionnels Associes (CPA) released a statement and security plan in which it calls for the UCI to shoulder responsibility for rider safety.

In its plan, available here, the CPA advocates an expansion of UCI's mandate to develop and publish technical safety specifications for road races, monitor compliance and enforce penalties. The UCI currently accepts no responsibility for course design, caravan conduct or the safety of riders in general as this falls to race organisers. 

In regards to vehicles in the carvan, the CPA states:

Experienced drivers possess an understanding of the movement and dynamics of the peloton.

Experienced drivers who study the course map make better decisions about when and how to pass riders
(for example, choosing not to pass on narrow, twisting descents). 

The UCI should create additional levels of certification for vehicle drivers and motorbike pilots based on
race day experience and attendance of continuing education seminars. Poor performance by drivers
should lead to demotion. 

Therefore, pro riders advocate for reforms focused on increasing the use of well-trained and experienced drivers, and improving the maneuvers when motorbikes are in close proximity to riders.

The plan also discusses changes to safety measures for the final three kilometres of a stage or race finish. 

 

 

 

 

Muddy victories for Neff and Absalon at La Bresse MTB World Cup
The first half of the Cross-country series of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup concluded in La Bresse, France, on Sunday, with new faces on the top step of the podium for the first time this season.