17 Feb 2016 - 12:27 PM 

Mark Cavendish and Bradley Wiggins will be reforming the partnership that won the 2008 Madison World Title at the UCI Track World Championship in London. 

Whilst Wiggins has stepped away from road cycling to focus entirely on the Olympics, Cavendish will continue to balance his road and track ambitions. He has been in very good form so far this season, taking the overall and a stage win at the Tour of Qatar.

His last track outing at the World Cup meet in Hong Kong saw the British star sprinter take 4th in the Omnium. The expectation is that he will have taken improvement out of that performance and will soon be ready to show his best form in the velodrome.

“They are back together and it will be nice to see them out there,” said Great Britain’s technical director Shane Sutton. Certainly, the pair will get the star billing at the Track World Championships and all eyes will be on them to see if they are ready for the Rio Olympics. 

SBS2 will broadcast the Track World Championships from 3-6 March with Cycling Central also live-streaming the event. 

LIVE! UCI Track World Championships - London

Thursday 3 March - Sunday 6 March SBS2

Thursday 3 March: 0630 – 0800 AEDT
Friday 4 March: 0600 – 0800 AEDT
Saturday 5th March: 0630 – 0830 AEDT
Sunday 6th March: 0550 – 0915 AEDT
Monday 7th March: 0100 – 0500 AEDT

Wednesday 17 Feb 2016

The Direct Energie youngster crashed during training and was taken to hospital in Spain, with his team have describing his injuries as "seeming relatively serious". 

Coquard had been training on time trial bikes with teammates Sylvain Chavanel and Arthur Pichot at the time of the accident.

In a statement on their website, Direct Energie said that the crash had been a result of bad weather combined with the wind caused by a passing truck.

The 23-year-old was taken to hospital where he was diagnosed with a broken scapula.

The young sprinter had been scheduled to ride Ruta del Sol and Paris-Nice  after starting his season off well with two wins in Etoile de Besseges.

He may also have had his eyes on competing at the Track World Championships as the reigning Madison World Champion, but those plans will likely be changed after his crash with a likely recovery time of 6-8 weeks.

"Bryan remains very optimistic and keeps his usual smile. We wish him already a speedy recovery," the team wrote.

Alberto Contador has revealed that he is contemplating continuing cycling in 2017, and it may well be that he does so on his own team, with the Spanish star looking to set up a World Tour squad.

The multiple Grand Tour winner announced his plans at the presentation of the Alberto Contador Foundation junior and under-23 teams, saying that there would be two different scenarios that would see him reconsider his retirement.

"One, you have an accident on the Tour as in 2014 and I can not perform as I would like. The other is if I get a professional team. This second option is becoming more likely, although it is complicated."

Contador won't be satisfied with setting up a second-tier squad, and if he is going to be involved with a team he wants it to race with the same level of competitiveness that Contador himself approaches racing.

“If we form a team, it’s to go to the Tour de France with guarantees of success. I wouldn’t want it to be an experiment,” Contador said. “There are about 50 percent possibilities that we can create a team. If it doesn’t work out, we will continue with the Foundation, because I want to give back everything that cycling has given to me.”

The big question is whether Contador can attract enough in sponsorship, with the ailing Spanish economy likely to prove a hurdle to raising the average World Tour budget of 15 Million Euro. 

Money aside, it could be a good time to set up a squad, with Oleg Tinkoff getting out of cycling next season and lot of riders and staff up for grabs.

It will make for a lot of speculation during the Tour de France if the team goes ahead. July is the traditional time when cyclists make their final decisions about contracts before their official announcement in October, and riders off contract and riding well will be natural targets for Contador's setup.

For years, checking out a pro bike means an insight into a world where savvy racers and mechanics have tweaked this component and that, in ways that the racer believes confers a real-world benefit.  It can be small like adding grip tape to a lever or pedal, sealing cable runs, or big stuff like taking a component from another discipline and using it in ‘cross.    
 
So it’s funny that the big tech story has gone unmentioned.  Both the men and women’s elite champion raced and won at Zolder on bikes that their respective bike sponsors discontinued.  And not as recently as 2015.  Wout Van Aert was on Colnago’s Prestige frameset, which hasn’t had cantilevers since the 2012 model year. On the plus side, it did win the 2013 CX worlds under Sven Nys.  Thalita de Jong was on Giant’s TCX AdvancedSL, which last appeared in the Giant lineup in 2013. 
 
At least Van Aert was on a bike finished like the current disc-brake model.  De Jong’s was still labeled Giant, when her team has been riding Liv-branded Giants since 2014.
 
Old-tech won the worlds.  Think about the last time you could make that statement about a bike that won a Classic or a Grand Tour, that a long-discontinued model was raced to victory.  Think about what kinds of discussion it would provoke.