Yes! That time of year is upon us again, it’s Christmas. Cue massive over excitement and then post-Christmas bike pimpin in the office – it’s just how we roll. But before all the nonsense ensues and the Christmas party changes office dynamics forever, here’s a roundup of some news highlights this week:
The week’s news in brief:
Pegasus grounded for good?
On Monday, it emerged that the UCI had refused to grant the stumbling Pegasus Sports team a Professional Continental licence. After securing financial support for the team just before the deadline for submission to the UCI, Chris White, the team’s manager, was certain they had done enough to secure a Pro Continental licence for 2011. However, this news comes as a hammer blow to a team which thought it was out of the woods.
Despite having its wings cut, Chris White has declared Pegasus Sports will continue to compete where possible and has said that he intends to explore all possible avenues to keep the team going. Nevertheless, White has encouraged his riders to look for new teams, with RadioShack being one of the prime targets. Lance Armstrong’s post on Twitter confirmed this, as it was suggested that he and manager Johann Bruyneel were “talking about possibly making some roster additions”.
It appears that White is lowering his sights once again, with a Continental license now likely to be on the cards. Thoughts of acquiring such a licence must leave a bitter taste in White’s mouth, given that he was originally hoping to acquire a ProTour licence before the team’s primary financial backer withdrew its support.
In terms of the riders who are now left in something of a limbo as they look to secure a last minute place on a new team, Robbie McEwen was one of the first to disclose his intentions. While RadioShack may indeed provide him with a ride for 2011, he also revealed that he was contemplating retirement from the sport, “For now, I would not think the worst. But maybe I should indeed stop. This is not the goodbye I’ve dreamed of.”
On a more positive note, several riders have been able to secure their futures, with Canadian Svein Tuft being the first and Belgian time trial expert Dominique Cornu being the second, acquiring a place with Topsport Vlaanderen for 2011.
Nevertheless, many riders are still desperately looking for a team with only a short amount of time left to do so, including Robbie Hunter, Darly Klimov, Christian Knees, Luke Roberts and Clinton Avery.
Carlos Sastre has reiterated that he will definitely be riding for Geox-TMC in 2011, despite being left out of the UCI’s published list of registered riders for the team. With only fifteen riders listed on the UCI website, speculation that Sastre is about to jump ship has been rife.
However, the UCI changed certain clauses within rider contracts earlier in the year, meaning that Sastre is forced to go through the UCI’s protocol for a second time.
Sastre has said that he is looking forward to the team’s first training camp at the start of the year and played down rumours that there are any issues over a lack of a ProTeam licence. In regards to his name not being on the UCI’s published list of registered riders, Sastre simply said “It’s just some documents that need sorting”.
Santa invades London:
This week, Santa has swapped his sleigh for a Barclays Cycle Hire bike, with 30 employees at a social media agency choosing to dress up and spread some festive cheer. There was even two reindeer thrown in for good measure.
Considering recent protests around the raising of tuition fees, the group attracted the attention of police who were wary that this was another elaborate demonstration. However, these Santa’s were entirely innocent.
They even bumped into Prince Philip at Buckingham Palace who stopped to greet the group. See the Santa troupe in action below:
2011 Team Kits.
Not available from us quite yet, but the 2011 team kits have started to be announced this week and we’re placing our orders so we thought it worth a quick look:
We were big fans of the Cervelo Test Team and we’re quite looking forward to seeing Garmin-Cervelo, they’re going to be quite a force to reckon with. Plus, they’ll look rather dashing we think!
No blog would be complete without a penny farthing, it’s a new PBK tower rules (if I have my way!). Plus, Cav is modelling the new HTC-Highroad kit. Retro loveliness.
Finally, here’s Tom ‘look-at-the-pins-on-him’ Boonen modelling the 2011 Quickstep kit:
Tweet of the week:
Our tweet of the week this week comes from Lucas Euser:
@lucaseuser: In honour of our new team mate, Svein Tuft, today I am going to ride in the rain then proceed to cage fight a bear.
Pic of the week:
A few pictures here to see you over the Christmas period.
First off looks like Boasson Hagen will be asking Santa for a new bike this year after a recent growth spurt:
There’s always one at the work Christmas party that has a few too many to drink and ends up getting naked. My money’s on PBK Grant this year.
Thinking of going for a ride on Christmas day? Why not get a group of you and take your turbo trainers out for a spin:
Video of the week:
Here’s a little festive video to get you in the mood. A nice little modification for any bike this time of the year:
Pick of this week’s new products:
Why not pimp out your new turbo trainer you found under the tree this year with the Elite Turbo Trainer Accessories Kit. Too cold outside? Shed some of those holiday pounds in style while following the gruelling Tour de France Alpe d’Huez stage, the Italian Classics Imperia-San Remo or one of the most demanding climbs on the Giro d’Italia, the Monte Zoncolan, in the comfort of your own home.
What we’re up to this weekend:
We’ll be celebrating Christmas! Plenty of presents, turkey, alcohol… plentiful everything really! Merry Christmas and a happy New Year to all!