In our daily NewsWire, we bring you a collection of the intriguing stories from newspapers, journals and elsewhere around the world of competitive cycling. Pour your coffee, mute your phone and read on.
Jelle Vanendert: ‘Without Gilbert, it’s a world of difference’ — Het Nieuwsblad
Life has changed for Jelle Vanendert since the departure of his former team leader Philippe Gilbert. The young Belgian, a revelation of the 2011 Tour de France, now co-leads his Lotto-Belisol squad along with Gianni Meersman into the hilly classics, and must run up against his former mentor as a fierce competitor.
“Without Gilbert in the team, it’s a world of difference,” Vanendert told Het Nieuwsblad. “With such a leader the line for me was five or 10 kilometers back from the finish. My assignment was simple: give full throttle to the point where I deposited Phil. Then he did the rest.”
“Now, he is an opponent. A win is not as obvious as it was with Gilbert,” he added. “I must follow first, save power and see if I am still fresh enough to make a difference in the finale.”
Devolder aims at Tour classification — Gazet Van Antwerpen
After a disappointing classics campaign, Stijn Devolder (Vacansoleil-DCM) has decided to take some rest and re-focus on the Tour de France. For the second year running, he simply could not find a foothold in the early season, and found himself unable to repeat his successes of the past.
“Months trained, zero result,” he lamented. “I will go for the standings in the Tour.”
“It’s always the decisive moments when bad lucks happens. I could never show I had good legs. Very frustrating,” he added.
Devolder requested a start spot for Brabantse Pijl on Wednesday, but the team was already set. So Devolder will rest, instead.
“The past period has been quite exhausting,” he said. “It’s been a while since I started the Tour. I do not feel that I’m done with the race. I want to figure out where my limits are as a classification rider.”
Police strike threatens Amstel Gold Race — BNR
Dutch police have planned strikes over a union dispute, hoping to secure increased compensation. The organization has taken aim at a number of events and gatherings where their presence is required, including the Amstel Gold Race.
“The Amstel Gold Race is an event that we have planned,” said Jan Willem Van Der Pol of the Netherlands Police Union. “We are consulting with the organizers to see what can be done. (We want) them to have a beautiful Amstel Gold Race and we still have a good way to perform our operation.”