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

Was Boogerd offered money to lose 1998 Lombardia?

Category: Cycling

In the past, if two or more riders were part of a breakaway, it happened that riders paid a lot of money to be allowed to take the victory. It may still happen, but I hope the cycling sport is more honest nowadays.

Former Rabobank rider Michael Boogerd claims that Oscar Camenzind (Mapei-Bricobi) owes him 40,000 Swiss francs after the Swiss rider took a six second victory over Boogerd at the 1998 Giro di Lombardia.

"We agreed: who wins pays," Boogerd said in an interview with Wielerland Magazine. "That happens sometimes in racing, though I was not a fan of it because it relies on the winner paying up. We agreed on an amount of 40,000 Swiss Francs..."

The two riders moved away from the peloton on the descent of the the Forcella di Burra into Bergamo and built a gap of over a minute. The riders worked together until Bergamo, where Camenzind dropped Boogerd.

Six days earlier, Camenzind had won the world championships in Valkenburg, which means he was in a good form anyway. The Swiss rider says that Boogerd's claims are false.

"In 2000 at the Tour of Valencia he came to me with that story," he explained. "Why was he suddenly asking me for money two years later?

"I want to tell you how it is. I was super that day. Just before Bergamo he offered me a sum of money if I would let him win. I told him that I wanted to win. Moreover, the amount was so low that I could not take him seriously... Why should I have to give a weaker rider money?"

Keisse renews with Omega Pharma-QuickStep

Category: Cycling

Iljo Keisse has extended his contract with Omega Pharma-QuickStep and will stay with the team through 2014.

The Belgian won stage 7 of the Tour of Turkey earlier this year, after having spent the day in an early breakaway and with seven kilometers left, he solo attacked.

"Iljo is improving year by year on the road races," Patrick Lefevere said. "This year he won also an unforgettable stage in Turkey with a thrilling final. We believe he can improve even more and become a good team player. Iljo is also a great track rider. With him we have the possibility to guarantee visibility to our sponsors even in the winter, during the track season."

If you have followed cycling for a while, you may remember that Keisse tested positive for cathine and a diuretic at the 2008 Six Days of Gent. The Belgian federation banned him for two years then lifted that ban at the end of 2009 and he started to race. Keisse wasn't too happy when the Court of Arbitration for sport later decided that he should sit out his entire ban. In August last year, he was allowed to ride everywhere in the world, except Belgium. However, since January 27, 2012, he can start in the Belgian races too.

"It's an honor to be a part of this team even in the future," Keisse said. "In the last years the team always supported me, even in the difficult moments. This year I participated also in Paris-Roubaix, my dream race. I hope to be able to compete in the great classics even in the next years and I will work for it. Now I will focus on the last part of the road season and then, during the winter I will ride also few Six Days, maybe not all of them. My first focus, in agreement with the team, is to prepare as best as possible for the 2013 road season."

Gert Steegmans, Julien Vermote, Niki Terpstra, and Nikolas Maes have extended their contracts into 2013 and Matteo Trentin, Stijn Vandenbergh and Andy Fenn renewed their contract through 2014.

Fédrigo to stay with FDJ-Big Mat

Category: Cycling

Pierrick Fedrigo has extended his contract with FDJ-Big Mat for another two years. He will now stay with the team through 2014.

Last season, the French rider suffered from Lyme disease and struggled during the season. This year, he finally felt better, and first won a stage at the Criterium International.

Then claimed his fourth Tour stage win when the race came to Pau, where he also won his last stage, in 2010.

Fedrigo turned pro in 2002 with Credit Agricole, and moved to Bouygues Telecom in 2005. He joined FDJ last year.