British stars to clash in lucrative Singapore criterium
BRITISH TEAMS SHIFT BATTLEGROUND TO SINGAPORE
A few thousand miles away from the Eddie Soens Memorial, the big British teams are doing battle on a very different patch. Rapha Condor Sharp, Endura and Motorpoint have all sent teams to Singapore to compete in the big-money OCBC Cycle Singapore criterium on Sunday.
British champion Kristian House and Darren Lapthorne spearhead the four-man Rapha line-up, while Endura can count on crit kings Rob Hayles and James McCallum. Meanwhile, Ian Bibby and Malcolm Elliott headline for Motorpoint.
The stakes are certainly high: the criterium winner takes home a cool $12,500.
The British won't have it all their own way though. The likes of ProTour squads Lampre and Footon, as well as teams from Australia, Japan and the US, are also bidding to take the lucrative victory.
TEAM SPROCKET ADD HORTON WITH DEBUT ON HORIZON
Team Sprocket have been bolstered by the signings of American Christian Parrett and Tobyn Horton, a Briton who has plied his trade on the kermesse circuit for several years.
Manager Martin McCrossan said: "Tobyn is a good sprinter and a tough rider; he fits the bill of what the team is looking for. We're keen to see how he develops."
Guernsey-man Horton - the first Channel Islander to ever turn professional - took tenth in last year's CiCle Classic on a rare racing foray on the UK mainland.
He was due to ride for Team Deschuytter in Belgium for another season, telling Cycling Weekly in October that he was giving it one more year to achieve a pro contract.
The Anglo-Swedish outfit, backed by former Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus Backstedt, kicks off its season at the 1.2-rated GP Lillers in France on Sunday.
As part of a busy European schedule, they will also be racing at the likes of the Nokere-Koerse, GP Pino Cerami, Tour of Finistere and Tour of Brittany in the coming months.
Team Sprocket 2010 roster
Jack Anderson (Aus)
Alex Wetterhall (Swe)
Niklas Gustavsson (Swe)
Freddy Johansson (Swe)
Richard Larsen (Swe)
Filip Rudenstam (Swe)
Tobyn Horton (GBr)
Russell Hampton (GBr)
Christian Parrett (USA)
CHIAPPUCCI AND LEBLANC TO GUEST ON RAPHA RANDONEES
Ride guides don't get much better than Claudio Chiappucci and Jean-Marie Leblanc - one a mountain livewire and Tour/Giro podium finisher, the other in charge of the Tour de France through three decades.
Although Leblanc is best known for organizing cycling's flagship race, it's easily forgotten that he finished it twice as a rider.
The pair will be joining the Appenini and Alpine Randonées apiece, offering their vast amounts of experience in the week-long spectaculars being jointly put on by Rapha and La Fuga
Rapha founder and chief executive Simon Mottram said: "On Randonnées like this, the thing I look forward to most is the constant rhythm of the ride, day after day for a week.
"Following this routine, all you focus on is the effort of riding and the company of your fellow riders. The stresses and pressures of normal life fade away after a couple of days; it's a powerful counterpoint to our sedentary lives."
Food, accommodation and mechanical assistance is all provided during the randonées.
For more information, visit http://www.rapha.cc/rapha-randonnees
TEAM QOROZ HITS THE ROAD FOR 2010
Team Qoroz was officially launched at the manufacturer's headquarters in Stroud last weekend.
The U23 team, doubling up as the South-West bike academy, has expanded to seven riders this season, adding Hugh Wilson and Tom Stockdale to their line-up.
Former youth national champion Greta Junker also remains with the team, gunning for a strong performance in the women's National Track Championships.
The team will be racing some Premier Calendars, top National B and several French races over the course of the season.
Equipment-wise, they will ride titanium Qoroz Race Wons.
Team qoroz 2010 roster