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  1. Katie Archibald defends European individual pursuit title

    Katie Archibald secured Great Britain's first gold medal of the 2017 UEC European Track Championships on Friday, successfully defending her title in the individual pursuit.

    The 23-year-old delivered her best ever time to set the fastest qualifying mark in the Berlin velodrome and then faced off against Poland's Justyna Kaczkowska in the final. Kaczkowska led after a kilometre but Archibald pulled back even and then surged away to take the win over the ensuing two kilometres. Her time of 3:29.328 earned her a second medal this week after she nabbed silver in the team pursuit.

    "Today I've had all the wins. I've beaten myself, I've beaten everyone else. I'll sleep happy," Archibald said.

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    "I went into qualifying with modest ambition, and suddenly by the time the final came around we are back to having high expectations and I thought 'it's all going to go wrong.'

    "We have our coaches in the last kilometre telling you whether you're up or down and I think if you're down your head goes, and I think that's what happened to her. I've been in that position myself so it's nice to be on this side of it."

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  2. Contador and Porte presented at Japan Cup - News shorts

    Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) and Richie Porte (BMC Racing) were among the riders presented to the crowds in Utsunomiya ahead of this weekend’s Japan Cup.

    For Contador, it is one of his final appearances on the bike before he finally, truly retires. Contador has been living the life of a recently retired rider since the Vuelta a Espana, but the Spaniard still has the Japan Cup and the Shanghai Criterium next week before he can set sail into the sunset. Contador will only race in Saturday’s criterium and not in Sunday’s road race.

    The Japan Cup has a different feel for Porte as he returns to racing after dramatically crashing out of the Tour de France in July. The race is his one and only event in the second half of the season and will mark the beginning of his preparation for the forthcoming season.

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    Also racing at the Japan Cup this weekend are last year’s winner Davide Villella and his teammate Davide Formolo, Alexey Vermulen (LottoNL-Jumbo), and home rider Fumiyuki Beppu (Trek-Segafredo), plus many more.

    Team Sunweb confirm rosters for men's, women's and development teams

    Sunweb confirmed the 2018 line-ups for their elite men's and women's squads as well as their development team on Friday, while announcing one last addition to the latter in Taiwan's Sergio Tu.

    After a busy offseason last year that saw the team move on from John Degenkolb but sign Michel Matthews and Wilco Kelderman, among other names, it's been a somewhat quieter transfer season for Sunweb's WorldTour men's squad this time around, at least in terms of acquisitions. Warren Barguil, who claimed two stages, the mountains jersey and 10th overall in July's Tour de France, looks to be the biggest name cutting ties with the team. Edward Theuns, who finished out his Trek-Segafredo career with a victory in the final stage of the Tour of Turkey, is the marquee name set to join the team next year.

    Astana extend Fominykh

    Broeckx continuing to recover

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  3. Report: Colle delle Finestre to feature in tough Alpine finale to 2018 Giro d'Italia

    The route of the 2018 Giro d’Italia will not be presented until the final week of November, but details of the course have trickled out in the Italian press in the weeks since Jerusalem was confirmed as the host for the race’s opening time trial on May 4 next year.

    Although RCS Sport has so far confirmed only the details of the opening three stages in Israel, Turin-based daily La Stampa reported on Friday that the climax of the Giro will feature three tough stages in the Alps in Piedmont before the caravan transfers south for the final stage in Rome on May 27. The Giro is set to tackle the mighty Colle delle Finestre, the Jafferau and Cervinia in a demanding denouement.

    According to La Stampa, stage 18 of the Giro is likely to run from Milan to a summit finish at the ski resort of Pratonevoso. The climb has twice featured in the race, with the eventual overall winner claiming the stage win on each occasion.

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    Pavel Tonkov won at Pratonevoso in 1996, while Stefano Garzelli claimed a small group sprint at the summit in 2000, two days before divesting Francesco Casagrande of the pink jersey in the final time trial. The 2008 Tour de France also featured a stage finish at Pratonevoso, with Simon Gerrans victorious.

    Stage 19, on the final Friday, could well prove to be the tappone of the Giro, with La Stampa reporting that the peloton will scale the dirt road of the Colle delle Finestre, then climb to Sestriere before tackling a demanding summit finish on the Jafferau, above Bardonecchia.

    The sterrato of the Colle delle Finestre famously made its Giro debut on the final weekend in 2005, when Paolo Savoldelli gamely defended his maglia rosa. It also featured in 2011 and most recently in 2015, when Mikel Landa’s powerful attack put the seemingly impregnable leader Alberto Contador into unexpected difficulty, though Contador retained his overall lead and won the Giro the following day.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  4. Sky extend with Kiryienka

    Vasil Kiryienka will ride on in Team Sky kit next season. The British Worldtour outfit delivered the news via a short Twitter video on Friday.

    Coming over from Movistar in 2013, Kiryienka, has served as a key component in Sky's Grand Tour squads, making nine Grand Tour starts in his five years with the team. He supported Chris Froome during three of his four career Tour de France victories, including this season's.

    An all-round talent, the 36-year-old Belarusian has won stages in both the Giro d'Italia and Vuelta a España in addition to claiming his most notable career result in Richmond in 2015: a gold medal in the World Championship individual time trial.

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    He followed that up with a silver medal in 2016. Kiryienka finished fifth in the event last month in Bergen, while playing a role in Sky's team time trial bronze.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

  5. Nibali ends season with victory at Taiwan KOM Challenge - Gallery

    Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) ended his 2017 season with victory at the Taiwan KOM Challenge, finishing more than a minute ahead of Spain’s Oscar Pujol and John Ebsen. Nibali reportedly set a new record for the event with a time of 3:19:54. The 106km event starts at sea level and finishes at an altitude of 3,275 metres atop the Wuling Pass, Taiwan’s highest road.

    Former Cannondale rider Phil Gaimon finished sixth, 10 minutes back, with 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans 10th. Britain’s Emma Pooley won the women’s race.

    The Taiwan KOM Challenge brought down the curtain on Nibali's 2017 season. He raced for a total of 81 days, finishing third at Giro d’Italia, second to Chris Froome at the Vuelta a Espana and winning Il Lombardia for a second time.

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    “It was a hard race because we went from sea level up to 3,275 metres. I’ve never ridden such a long and hard climb before in my entire life," Nibali said after posing on the winner’s podium.

    "I waited until the final 10 kilometres to attack when I saw the other riders tired and suffering. It was my last race of the season and so now its finally time for some holidays.” 

    A total of 600 riders took part in the event. Nibali and Pooley each collect a prize of 500,000 Taiwan dollars – close to 14,000 Euro - for victory. Nibali took part with his brother Antonio and Bahrain-Merida teammate Chun Kai Feng and team manager Brent Copeland.

    You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

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