After weeks of “maybes,” “probablys” and “almost definatelys,” Alexandro Valverde is now officially out of the 2005 Vuelta. The cause: tendonitis contracted at the 2005 Tour de France. Our Advice: as much as it pains us to say it, turn lower gears. Fortune’s wheel seems to be spinning more favorably for another Spanish talent, 2003 World Champ Igor Astarloa, who’s rumored be joining current Barloworld co-sponsor Valsir in a move to Lampre next season. As El Diario Vasco reports, Astarloa rode for Lampre team boss Giuseppe Martinelli earlier in his career, which gives the rumor the reak of a dirty, European, insider’s deal. Add to this the fact that the Basque has very tight links with Valsir, a comapny that is based in Brescia, Italy, which happens to be where Martinelli lives, and it seems almost inevitable.
In other news, Campagnolo guinea pig (scroll down) Fabio Sacchi will be following teammate Alessandro Petacchi to Domina Vacanze next season, while Quick-Step appears to be working its way down this year’s Giro GC in search of a Grand Tour rider, talking now to 3rd place finisher and KOM winner, Jose Rujano. In racing news, Juan Carlos Domingues of Saunier Duval has won the Vuelta a Burgos, while Candido Barbosa, who looks as out of place in Portugese racing as Chris Horner did in America last year, has taken his third stage of the Volta a Portugal, and currently sits in second overall, despite being “just” a sprinter. And, in a rare moment of usefulness for both sites, VeloNews and Daily Peloton have posted official start lists for the Vuelta and this weekend’s Classica San Sebastian.
Last but not least, TIAA-Cref rider and Dartmouth graduate Todd Yezefski has been updating Cyclocosm on the progress of things at US Elite Track Nats.
Cyclocosm: The public wants to know, Todd: will the track belly be making its triumpant return in Los Angeles?
Hulkster: Yeah, no more track belly for me. Although I’ll send you a pic of me sticking it out nice and far. And of the fÂµÂ¢&ing nice track burn that I got this morning in the scratch heat. But I did manage a 5th in the Ind. Pursuit earlier in the morning.
Cyclocosm:Looks like the points heat went a little better for you. Does that put you in the finals?
Hulkster: yeah. finals were ok. my teammate chad hartley lapped the field along with bobby lea and some other guys, so we were working for him, trying to help him beat bobby. but unfortunately, we fell short. team pursuit tomorrow, should be a good race.
For the record, Todd also won the first sprint of the points race. Anyway, thanks for the updates. Good luck tomorrow, and our hearts go out to all your teammates who got slaughtered at the Tour l’Ain.