My name is Elin - A pro cycling lover's reflections

I don't give up like that

Category: Cycling

David de la Fuente of Team Scott-American Beef won the second stage of the Deutschland Tour today. It was a difficult uphill finish, but de la Fuente is quite good in uphill finishes so he deserves to win. In the end of it he shoot out to the lead with a few hundred metres to go. Pietro Caucchioli (Crédit Agricole) finished second ahead of Thomas Lövkvist.

Linus Gerdemann still holds the leader's jersey, ahead of Lövkvist and Janez Brajkovic.

And I feel a thunder in my heart that I can't control

Category: Cycling

Things may happen quickly. One day you lead a race and the very next day somebody takes the leader's jersey from you. Yesterday Russel Downing took over the leader's jersey at the Tour of Ireland but in the end Marco Pinotti (Team Columbia) took the victory.
  Russell Downing, the Pinarello CandiTV rider succeeding in bringing back some dangerous move as Michael Barry (Team Columbia) and Julian Dean (Garmin Chipotle) attacked him, but when Pinotti raced clear with about ten kilometres to go he had nothing left and he could do nothing else than losing 33 seconds, which meant Marco Pinotti was the winner of the race.
Pinotti, a 32-year old triple Italian time trial champion was lucky as he got a gap and nobody could bring him back. So raced solo to the finish, and finished one minute and four seconds behind Rabon.
"I am delighted with this, it is my first stage race victory," he said. "This was already my best pro season but this is really the cherry on top of the cake - I am very happy. Before the stage I didn't think the circuit would suit me but it worked out very well. My team-mate Michael Barry attacked and after he was brought back, I went. I got a gap and was able to pull further ahead by the finish."

Frantisek Rabon (Team Columbia) took the team's fourth stage win in five days. So I dare to say that Team Columbia has had a great Tour of Ireland this year. 

Rabon and the Swedish rider Fredrik Ericsson (Pezula Racing) were part of a larger breakaway group but the group was reduced to two riders after the first of four ascents of St. Patrick's Hill. In the end Rabon won by fifteen seconds, as he accelerated and the Swedish cyclist had no chance to follow.

It seems the Swedish riders are in a good form at this moment.

There is a cat sitting on my bed

Category: Cycling

Denis Menchov abandoned on the first climb of Saturday's stage one at Deutschland Tour. The Russian was a last-minute addition to the Rabobank team and so yesterday he abondoned the race. A couple of weeks ago the Russian decided not to go to Vuelta a España, a race that he won in 2005 and 2007. Menchov was tired after a long season, so he started this Tour tired, team spokesman Luuc Eisenga said afterwards.

Menchov finished fourth overall in the Tour de France, but now the rider needs a rest. He has raced the Giro, the Tour and the Olympics
"One can never be 100 percent sure to be at the start of the races in the autumn. We decided to see how Denis would feel after the Olympics", said Eisenga.
And apparently he needed some more rest. It's a pity though that the rider is winless for 2008. His last win came with the 2007 Vuelta a España overall. It seems quite many riders are tired right now and I hope they can relax for a second now before they do their comebacks later this season (at least some of them) without feeling enervated then.