Quintana Climbs into Pink after Mountain Attack

  May 28th, 2014 | 12:03 | Canyon Onlineredaktion
Quintana in Pink / (c) TDWsport.com

Nairo Quintana of Movistar Team laid his claim to the overall title of the 2014 Giro d’Italia yesterday with a massive attacking display in the Alps to move into the race lead on the Ultimate CF SLX.

How it happened

Stage 16 was always going to be explosive. Just 139 km long and with three huge ascents, including the legendary Gavia and Stelvio passes. Add to that the adverse weather conditions with the peloton riding through heavy snow at higher ground, yesterday had all the makings of a classic Giro stage.

Stage 16 / (c) TDWsport.com

The Columbian slipped away before the final climb of the day and pressed home his advantage on the steep ramps to the summit finish at Val Martello, distancing Ryder Hesjedal of Garmin-Sharp on the final hairpins to the line. Further down the mountain, the main contenders were still toiling away, with pink jersey wearer, Rigoberto Uran, coming to the finish over four minutes down and losing his lead in the overall classification. Quintana now has a minute and 41 second advantage over his compatriot Uran.

Nairo Quintana / (c) TDWsport.com

Following the stage, a delighted Quintana was buoyed by the commitment of his teammates and by his own performance: “This gives me confidence and confirms I can do great things in the present and future. I dedicate this to my team. I owe them everything.”

The challenges to come…

Quintana has had to fight hard to even make it this far in the race, having ridden with a chest infection for the first two weeks and undergoing a course of antibiotics. Nevertheless, the final week of the Giro is made for the pure climbers.

After yet another category one summit finish on Thursday comes the second Individual Time Trial of this year’s Giro on Friday. The twist? It’s 26 km straight up the side of a mountain.

Stage 19 / Photo: RCS Sport

As if that wasn’t enough to separate the overall contenders, the final showdown will take place on the feared slopes of Monte Zoncolon. A Giro highlight, expect to see massive crowds with the tifosi going wild and riders struggling with fierce 20% gradients.

Stage 20 / (c) RCS Sport

Following this test we will know who will be crowned 2014 Giro d’Italia champion.

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Giro d’Italia 2014: Katusha and Movistar Team Fight for Pink!

  May 8th, 2014 | 14:23 | Canyon Onlineredaktion
Purito in la Maglia Rosa 2012 / (c) ROTH

The 2014 Giro d’Italia is just around the corner and both Canyon ProTeams are set to be right in the hunt for the coveted “Maglia Rosa”. With 21 stages, two time trials, one team time trial and a whole host of big mountain stages, this year’s edition promises to be a close-fought classic.

Quintana at Tirreno Adriatico / (c) Graham Watson

In a race that will favour the featherweight climbers of the peloton, Nairo Quintana of Movistar Team and Katusha’s Joaquim Rodríguez line up at the start as marked men for the title. As two of the best climbers in the world, both have a proven track record over this kind of terrain.

Blues vs. Reds.

Canyon vs. Canyon.

Get ready for some epic racing as the 2014 Grand Tours get underway…

Rodríguez: “It’s time I netted a Grand Tour”

Purito is without doubt one of the most consistent Grand Tour riders in the world with a number of podium performances to his name, most recently 3rd place at the 2013 Tour de France. However, he has yet to stand on the top step at the end of a three week race. In the 2012 Giro d’Italia he came agonisingly close, taking two stage wins aboard his Aeroad CF and wearing the Maglia Rosa for much of the race before losing his lead in the final time trial by just 16 seconds.

Puito wins in Catalunya / (c) TDWsport.com

This year could be very different. Purito has targeted the Giro as his main objective for 2014: “It’s a route which suits me. It’s got a lot of long, hard stages.” Despite a disappointing showing in the recent Ardennes classics where he suffered injury from crashing, Rodríguez wrapped up the Volta a Catalunya in style earlier this year against an incredibly strong field and rightly goes into the race as one of the main favourites.

Luca Paolini in pink in 2013 / (c)  ROTH

The 2013 Giro was a huge success for Katusha with stage wins from both Maxim Belkov and Luca Paolini and multiple days in pink. The Katusha squad will be focussed on shepherding Purito through the mountains where the race will be decided: “The team is a very strong one, well-focused, and that’s always important.”

Quintana steps up to leadership

One of the performances that got people talking most in 2013 was Nairo Quintana’s debut Tour de France. After taking 2nd place overall, the best young rider’s jersey, the polka-dot jersey, not to mention a stage win, it was certain to all that it’s only a matter of time before the Columbian climber bags a Grand Tour. With a course so packed full of climbing, that win could come even sooner than many expected as Quintana takes to the start in Belfast as the man to beat.

Quintana wins in Argentina / (c) Graham Watson

With a stage race win and a number of consistent performances coming early in 2014, Quintana clearly has the form, and as last year’s Tour de France showed, the stamina to last three weeks. Movistar Team have a number of mountain domestiques to aid Quintana in his bid for overall glory but can also look elsewhere for success. Adriano Malori is racing his home Grand Tour and will have his eye on the stage 12 time trial, with two TT wins already under his belt this season it would be hard to bet against him.

The Contenders

Quintana and Rodríguez will have their work cut out if they want to arrive in Trieste wearing pink. This year a number of strong contenders will line up at the start to ensure an incredibly open race for 2014. Those to watch out for include BMC veteran Cadel Evans and OPQS’s Rigoberto Uran, both of whom finished on the podium last year. Past winners of the race riding this year include Ivan Basso of Cannondale, Michele Scarponi of Astana, and most recently, 2012 winner Ryder Hesjedal of Garmin -Sharp.

2014 Giro d'Italia / (c) RCS Sport

The Route

As is increasingly the trend with the Grand Tours, this year’s Giro d’Italia will get underway on foreign soil, this time in Belfast, Northern Island. Two sprint stages on the Emerald Isle follow the opening 21 km team time trial around Belfast on Friday, which will determine who gets to be the first rider to pull on the pink jersey.

After its brief stint abroad and a rest day after the weekend, the race returns home to the heel of Italy on Tuesday 13th May. The first real test for the GC contenders comes the following Saturday with the first category summit finish to Montecopiolo in the Apennines mountains. With gradients creeping up to 13%, stage 8 will provide the first proper climbing showdown.

Stage 8 / (c) RCS Sport

The next big test in the second week comes in the form of a 42 km individual time trial over the rolling Barolo vineyards. This stage is bound to have a big impact on the general classification and will likely define the rest of the race. Both our teams will deploy the Speedmax CF for absolute efficiency on the climbs and maximum speed on the flats and descents.

Stage 12 / (c) RCS Sport

Two first category summit finishes lie in store over the following Saturday and Sunday providing no let-up for the riders before the Giro heads into its brutal final week. When names like the Stelvio, Monte Grappa and Monte Zoncolon appear the end of a 3 week stage race, you know it’s going to hurt… Stage 16 will be explosive as the riders tackle three big summits in just 139 km of racing.

Stage 16 / (c) RCS Sport

Then on Friday there will be no place for the riders to hide as they face an excruciating 26 km mountain time trial.

Stage 19 / Photo: RCS Sport

Saturday brings the dreaded Zoncolon for the final GC battle. The Zoncolon has achieved legendary status in the Giro with its unfathomably steep 20% pitches and uneven gradients. It’s more like climbing a wall than a road. Massive crowds will line the mountain on this day as the final places in the GC are settled.

Stage 20 / (c) RCS Sport

The following day marks the final stage of the 2014 Giro d’Italia with a procession into the city of Trieste before a fast sprint finish.

Check back here for more content throughout the race and look forward to an action-packed 2014 Giro d’Italia!

Team Katusha Line-up: Joaquím Rodríguez (Spa), Maxim Belkov (Rus), Giampaolo Caruso (Ita), Vladimir Gusev (Rus), Alberto Losada (Spa), Daniel Moreno (Spa), Luca Paolini (Ita), Angel Vicioso (Spa), Eduard Vorganov (Rus)

Movistar Team Line-up: Nairo Quintana (Col), Andrey Amador (Crc), Igor Anton (Spa), Eros Capecchi (Ita), Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa), José Herrada (Spa), Gorka Izagirre (Spa), Francisco Ventoso (Spa), Adriano Malori (Ita)

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Ardennes Roundup: Dominant Week for Valverde!

  April 28th, 2014 | 13:22 | Onlineredaktion
100th Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2014 Podium with Alejandro Valverde / (c) TDWsport.com

After 263 KM of racing and over 4700 metres of climbing, just one bike length separated Alejandro Valverde from victory at the finish line of Liège-Bastogne-Liège yesterday. The Spaniard came tantalisingly close to winning one of the toughest physical tests in cycling, only to be edged out by Simon Gerrans of ORICA-GreenEDGE in the sprint for the line.

Nevertheless, yesterday’s result capped off a fantastic week for Valverde and the Movistar Team. By piloting his Ultimate CF SLX to fourth in the Amstel Gold Race, a memorable victory on the Mur de Huy in Wednesday’s Flèche Wallonne and second place yesterday, Valverde proved to be the strongest and most consistent rider throughout the Ardennes Classics: “First, second and fourth in three Classics, there aren’t many out there who can achieve these results. […] I can’t really ask for much more.”

With eight victories to his name so far this season, Valverde is currently the most successful rider in the peloton in 2014. What’s more, he celebrated his 34th birthday on Friday. Valverde will now take a well-deserved break from racing before building up for an assault on the Tour de France in July.

Fourth for Caruso, no luck for Rodríguez

Heading into the Ardennes week, much expectation lay on the shoulders of Joaquim Rodríguez having performed exceptionally in these races over the years. Unfortunately though, this year it wasn’t to be as crashes took him out of both Amstel Gold and Flèche Wallonne. The damage sustained meant “Purito” couldn’t possibly be at his best for Liège-Bastogne-Liège, forcing him to withdraw prior to the finale.

Katushas Giampaolo Caruso pushing hard at Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2014 / (c) TDWsport.com

The baton was therefore handed to Katusha’s other uphill specialists, with Dani Moreno and Giampaolo Caruso performing exceptionally across the week. Moreno was a constant feature in the top-ten, with 9th place in all three races, meanwhile Caruso animated both Amstel Gold and Liège-Bastogne-Liège with attacking displays. The Sicilian, who normally rides in aid of others, made the most of the opportunity to ride for himself by attacking in the finale of yesterday’s race, only to be swallowed up by his pursuers within 100 metres from the line. Caruso still managed to hold on to take fourth place and with it Team Katusha’s best result of the Ardennes week.

Grand Tours just around the corner

With the 2014 Spring Classics season over, it’s now time for the Grand Tours. Up first is the Giro d’Italia, which starts on the 9th of May in Northern Ireland. We’ll be keeping you up to date with all the latest action as Nairo Quintana of Movistar Team and Rodríguez with Katusha fight it out for the pink jersey!

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The Strive Diaries: Entry 1 – EWS Round 1 in Chile

  April 23rd, 2014 | 17:47 | Onlineredaktion



Fabien Barel // Foto: Jérémie Reuiller

With the Strive Diaries we hope to capture the wide range of experiences, events and emotions that the Canyon Factory Enduro Team goes through. Just focussing on the good times doesn’t cut it, you’ve also got to reflect on when stuff doesn’t go right, and in some cases, badly wrong. The lives of high-level athletes are full of ups and downs, which is exactly what we want to expose. In this entry, we could bang on about how amazing it was to race in Chile with its incredible terrain and the support we experienced, but to do that would ignore the setbacks, and near disaster we had along the way.

Travelling to Chile was a complete step into the unknown on a number of levels. Despite being a bit of a logistical nightmare, nothing could prepare us for how how diverse and dynamic the riding scene is over there. People in Chile are absolutely mad for Enduro – some European countries could really take note. It was immediately clear to us that with a fan base like this, the country had truly earned the right to host the first round of the 2014 Enduro World Series (EWS).

The Canyon Crew was rolling deeper than usual to get the most of our time on the other side of the world. We spent build-up to racing doing film and photo shoots with the Andes as a backdrop, as well as training. Having got the shots we were after, it was time to really get to grips with the terrain at the warm-up race, “Montenbaik Enduro 2014” in La Parva. Just like us, it was clear that our competitors had also been putting in the hard hours over the winter months. Fabien finished up in fifth place, while Ines got onto the podium with a fantastic effort by taking third.

Ludo May // Foto: Jérémie Reuiller

Our Swiss newbie, Ludo May, couldn’t wait to get his first ever race in CFET colours underway: “Coming here to Chile was the first real trip I’ve done with the team and it feels great having a mechanic and manager at my side. I really felt this support, it’s like being part of a big family. Unfortunately a small mechanical held me back, but I’m still happy because I had good stages, which makes me confident for the EWS.”

After a solid performance by the guys drifting their way through “Antigrip Country”, we felt good on the five hour drive south to Nevados de Chillan, with everyone super keen to get EWS 2014 underway. Thursday and Friday were spent trying to get as much practise in on the course as possible, while the real action kicked off at the weekend, with six stages spread over Saturday and Sunday. Time was tight for everyone.

Ines Thoma // Foto: Jérémie Reuiller

Like all of us, Ines was feeling it before the race: “I was a bit nervous to be honest, but I think everyone else felt the same. You never know what’s going to happen, even if you’ve done thousands of races before. Being here is something else though, the trails are super fun to ride and we’ve got great weather so I’m happy!”

Even after the very first stage, it was clear that racing will be super close this season, with the rookies mixing it up with the big guns. Then Fabien came across the line. It was clear something was up and everyone looked on with concern etched on their faces. What the hell happened?

Fabien Barel // Foto: Jérémie Reuiller

Despite that crash and unaware of the damage he’d done, Fab still fought to the finish of day one: “I am not sure I should start it this way, but what a day. I did not expect the first day, the first stage happening this way. I started the first corner like a 15 year old kid, ripping the sand full speed, drifting, bunny-hopping the ruts of the others. A feeling where confidence makes you believe nothing can happen. An excitement that even after 20 years of racing, I cannot control… Half way down the track at 40km/h flat out, I go over the bar, face plant my head in the sand, bend my back like it shouldn’t and fall 5 meters below the trail. It took me 10 minutes to get climb back up my back hurt so much. I could barely move. I managed to go back on the bike and cross the finish line and go direct to the medical staff. After a long check, I decided to start the liaison to go to the second stage anyway… Should I have pushed today for a couple points? Are the risks worth it? Should I ride tomorrow? Did I plan the first round this way? All questions without answers but the only thing I know, is that I am here to ride my bike and give my best to compete. One knee on the floor does not mean that you are out… I would say, don’t ever give up!”

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It was an incredibly difficult and emotional decision to make on Sunday morning, but Fabien could go no further. As it turned out, it was absolutely the right decision. A proper check-up and scans in hospital that afternoon revealed that he’d broken his back at the 8th dorsal vertebra, coming within a hair’s breadth of being paralysed below the waist. It’s definitely at times like these that any thoughts about riding and racing take a backseat. We all realise just how close we came to absolute disaster.

Back on course, Ludo made a big impact in his first ever EWS race by finishing 13th. Meanwhile, Joe had great pace but was struck down by a flat tyre, which dropped him down to 25th.

Joe Barnes // Foto: Jérémie Reuiller

The Top Chief had a blast nonetheless: “My first race of the year was an amazing one to start with bringing us all the way to Chile. All through practice we would ride a stage and think it was the best thing ever and then move on to the next and think the same thing again. So much fun to be had in them Chilean hills.

I took it easy in the first stage as I knew the year was long and felt comfortable on my bike. After this I was ready to attack in the longer more physical stage 2. This stage came good for me with an 11th place finish. Day one was good but with my casual start I still felt that I had more to give and so was excited for the bigger, and possibly better second day of racing.

Stage 4 was a really flowy, fast and definitely loose trail. I pushed a bit harder where I could and came away with a 5th place finish and a personal best stage finish that helped me climb in the overall positions. Stage 5 became tight and technical and what I love riding at home in Scotland so excitement levels were at an all-time high. Unfortunately after galloping through a rock garden a bit too keen my front tyre started to lose air and was soon completely flat with half the stage still to go. I rode as fast as I could but lost a good amount of time to my competitors.

This was a huge disappointment for me for the first race of the year and first of the EWS series. I finished 25th in the end so still got some points but not where I really want to be. The fun I had over the whole weekend has made me keen for more and can’t wait for the second round coming up. Just going to take it easy in them rocks…”

It’s with mixed emotions that we look back on our time in Chile. Feelings range from being “totally stoked” after riding such incredible terrain and seeing the enthusiasm of the Chilean fans, to disappointment with our results, to complete shock following Fab’s crash. Heading back to Europe, we’ll regroup and be ready to go again at the Riva BIKE Festival in Italy.

Thank you very much for all the “get well” wishes we have already received for Fabien. We have to be patient and wait for further examinations, but like all of you, we hope to see Fab back on the bike as soon as possible!

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Made for the Mur: Valverde takes historic Flèche Wallonne for Canyon

  April 23rd, 2014 | 17:31 | Onlineredaktion
Alejandro Valverde takes Flèche Wallone 2014 /(c) TDWsport.com

On the final brutal ascent of the Mur de Huy, it was Movistar Team’s Alejandro Valverde who proved the strongest to take a historic victory for Canyon at Flèche Wallonne.

Following wins in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, Canyon bikes have now triumphed four times on the trot at the Ardennes Classic, in an unprecedented run of success.

With gradients well in excess of 20%, watching the legendary finish up the Mur de Huy resembles a super-slow-motion bunch sprint – few other races in the world provide such a vivid impression of the riders’ effort. To succeed, the winner has to time their effort to perfection – go too early and you’ll fade away, wait too long and it’s too late.

Valverde, who also triumphed in the race back in 2006, proved to have the legs and the experience as he built a gap over a select group of uphill specialists on his Ultimate CF SLX just after the steepest section of the climb.

Having notched up his eighth victory of the year, the Spaniard becomes the most successful rider so far in 2014 and will go into Sunday’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège as the man to watch. The race marks the climax of the Ardennes Week and could be the perfect birthday present for Valverde, who turns 34 on Friday.

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Ardennes Classics Preview: Katusha and Movistar Team Prepare for Climbing Showdown

  April 17th, 2014 | 15:55 | Canyon Onlineredaktion
Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2013:  Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez fights for the win / (c) TDWsport.com

The 2014 cobbled classics are behind us and therefore the cycling world’s attention now turns away from the big powerhouses of the peloton and back to the featherweight climbers. The Ardennes Classics are up next with three exciting races in store and barely a metre of flat road on the parcours.

Starting this Sunday (April 20th) with the Amstel Gold Race in the Limburg region of the Netherlands, the peloton will then tackle La Flèche Wallonne midweek on Wednesday 23rd before the climax of Liège-Bastogne-Liège on April 27th.

The Ardennes Classics have been a happy hunting ground for Canyon riders in the past, and this year will be no different. With the likes of Joaquim Rodríguez and Alejandro Valverde headlining Katusha and Movistar Team respectively, both squads possess the races’ big favourites and former winners. To deliver their captain in the ideal position, Katusha will rely on riders like Dani Moreno and Giampaolo Caruso, both of whom could also have a shot at victory. Meanwhile, Movistar Team will find strong climbing backup in Igor Anton and JJ Rojas. Alongside the Grand Tours, the Ardennes Classics stand out as the biggest objectives in many riders’ seasons, especially for climbing specialists. Competition is therefore guaranteed to be fierce.

Peloton tackles the Dutch Alps in Amstel Gold

Contrary to the beliefs of many, the Netherlands are not entirely flat, as will be proven this Sunday as the WorldTour takes on the 250 km route of Amstel Gold that will force them up and down all day long. The centrepiece of the race is the Cauberg. With an 11% gradient at its steepest point it will feature three times in the race pm Sunday, the last of which comes with just over 1 km to go to the finish, providing a tempting launchpad for anyone with a bit of zip left in the legs to take off solo towards the line.

Alejandro Valverde aims for the win at Amstel Gold Race / (c) TDWsport.com

Valverde was second here last year in addition to winning silver at the 2012 UCI Road World Championships on a similar course. With this in mind he has to be considered the most dangerous rider in the line-up having shown outstanding form so far this season, with seven victories and counting. The Spaniard not only climbs with the very best in the world, he is also capable of out-sprinting his rivals at the end of hours of tough racing.

Fourth triumph in a row for Canyon on the Mur de Huy?

Following in the tyre tracks of Philippe Gilbert in 2011 and Joaquim Rodríguez in 2012, Dani Moreno was the third rider in a row to skip away from the competition on the fierce gradients of the Mur de Huy and take Fléche Wallonne aboard the Aeroad CF. Could it be someone from Katusha or Movistar Team to make it four in a row next Wednesday? That depends on how they deal with the final challenge of the race. The Mur de Huy features three times on the 198 km route and hits a jaw-dropping 26% at its steepest point. The race usually comes down to an agonising slow motion bunch sprint as the riders gasp for breath and fight the lactic acid in their legs as they approach the summit of the wall.

Katushas Dani Moreno winning La Flèche Wallonne 2013 / (c) TDWsport.com

Dani Moreno favours these kind of brutal uphill finishes and will be particularly motivated to make it two wins in a row as he tackles the race on a custom painted Aeroad CF in honour of his victory last year. Be sure to keep an eye out for it!

Rodríguez eyes historic 100th edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège

Liège-Bastogne-Liège is one of the five Monuments of cycling and takes pride of place as the headline event of the Ardennes racing week. Nicknamed La Doyenne, or the “old lady”, it is the longest running bike race in the world with the first edition taking place way back in 1892. This year will mark the 100th edition, providing even further incentive to the riders. Between them and victory stand 260 km and 10 famous categorised ascents, including La Redoute, a name that is known throughout the sport.

Joaquim Rodríguez has made it perfectly clear that alongside the Giro d’Italia, this is the race he wants to win the most in 2014. The Catalan came agonisingly close last year after attacking in the finale and dropping all the favourites, only to get counter-attacked by young Irish rider, Dan Martin.

A rider with a track record at La Doyenne is Alejandro Valverde, who won the race back in 2006 and 2008, and rounded out the podium in 2013. With his form so far in 2014, the Spaniard stands a great chance of becoming a member of the exclusive club of three-time winners.

Three races and three huge opportunities for Canyon ProTeams to go for glory – it’s going to be a great week!

Katusha leading the peloton / (c) TDWsport.com

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Road to Kona: Nils Frommhold wins Ironman South Africa

  April 8th, 2014 | 13:29 | Onlineredaktion
Nils Frommhold

Canyon triathletes raced their way to success during a big weekend of competition around the world.

Nils Frommhold could not have dreamed for a better start to his season at Ironman South Africa. The 27 year-old German came away victorious from Sunday’s race and in doing so, collected enough qualification points to make the start line at the 2014 World Championships in Hawaii later this year. Fellow Canyon rider, Bas Diederen of Dutch outfit Team4Talent also put in a commendable performance and collected valuable points by finishing fourth in Port Elisabeth. Meanwhile, on the other side of the globe in New Zealand, Germany’s Olympic distance specialist, Anne Haug, kicked off her season in fantastic fashion by taking the silver medal at the opening round of the ITU World Triathlon Series in Auckland.

Speedmax CF delivers Ironman Frommhold to victory 

Racking up victory number two in only his third ever start, Nils currently possesses an outstanding success rate in Ironman competition. Following Sunday’s commanding performance he will no doubt be one of the favourites for the world title this year. Nils posted the fastest splits for each leg, landing the hammer blow on his rivals during the 180 km ride aboard his custom Speedmax CF. Rolling into T2 with a five minute advantage over his nearest rivals, he maintained his strength throughout the run to further build his lead and post arguably the biggest win of his career-to-date.

Nils Frommhold's Speedmax CF

“I just did my own thing out there, even when I was out front I never really looked back”, Nils reflected after crossing the line. “After about 15 or 20 km on the bike I was wondering why no one had come past, but then I did look back and realised I was on my own. Then I just thought to myself, ‘You have to go for it!’”

Even if he made it look easy, Nils had to battle on the run: “The first 10 km were great, I felt like I was flying, but from kilometre 20 to 35 it was really tough”. With a time of 8 hours, 26 minutes and 7 seconds, Nils secured the maximum available 2000 points in the Kona Pro Rankings to cement his starting position at the World Championships.

Bas Diederen was also in the running for the podium under the African sun. Coming out of the water in the leading trio and holding his position on the bike leg, the Dutchman fell back on the run but can still be content with a solid performance: “Today wasn’t my best day as I haven’t quite recovered fully after the Abu Dhabi Triathlon, but I can only congratulate the top three.”

Bas Diederen on his Speedmax

One of the greatest aspects of Ironman competition is having amateur racers go head-to-head with the full-time pros. Congratulations therefore go to Canyon rider Sam Baxter of the UK, who ranked as the top amateur in the race by finishing in 12th overall, beating a number of professionals in the process.

Haug off to a flying start in the ITU World Triathlon Series

Earlier in the day Germany’s top female triathlete, Anne Haug, celebrated a successful season-opening race by taking the silver medal in Auckland. Despite being caught towards the back of the pack coming out of the water, Anne fought her way back to the front during an incident-filled bike leg riding her new Aeroad CF and put in a storming run to elevate her into second place.

Anne Haug and her DTU coach Dan Lorang // Foto: DTU/Jo Kleindl

Her coach, Dan Lorang, was overjoyed by the display: “Considering she hasn’t had much time to prepare, Anne put in a sensational performance”. Anne herself was also pleasantly surprised: “I didn’t think I’d be capable of this with the way my training has gone, but there’s something about racing here in New Zealand that always brings the best out of me.”

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Tour of Flanders Preview: Katusha and Movistar Team Ready to Attack the Cobbles

  April 4th, 2014 | 13:31 | Onlineredaktion
Katushas Luca Paolini leading the peloton on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

The 98th edition of the Tour of Flanders will roll out from the centre of Bruges on Sunday to mark the start of one of most evocative, demanding, and downright insane spectacles in professional cycling. For the cycling-mad locals, it doesn’t get any bigger than De Ronde van Vlaanderen. Their race eclipses all other events on the international sporting calendar, and that includes the Tour de France. The proof lies in the millions who come out to line the course just to catch a glimpse of their heroes in action. All across the region they congregate on the cobbled climbs, bier in one hand, frites in the other, to celebrate this festival of cycling.

The Challenge Ahead

While the spectators soak up the atmosphere, the riders undergo an all-together different experience. Between Bruges and Oudenaarde the course winds its way over 260 km to tackle 17 fierce Hellingen in total. What these climbs may lack in altitude, they more than make up for with gradients in excess of 20% in addition to the race’s defining feature: the cobbles! It is a true test of a rider, requiring the very highest levels of endurance, power, bike-handling skills, experience, tactical nous, as well as the very best from their equipment: one mechanical mishap at the wrong time and it’s game over.

Profile Ronde van Vlaanderen 2014 / Photo: rvv.be

Katusha Back Two-Pronged Attack

One rider more who is than up for this challenge is Katusha’s Classics specialist, Luca Paolini. The 37-year-old has all the necessary experience to be considered a real frontrunner for Sunday and is already planning how he can go for the win: “I’ll have two days to mull over where to attack […] I’ll have a film in my head beforehand of what I’d like to do.”

Katushas Luca Paolini leading the peloton on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

While Paolini is ready to go on the offensive, should a select group arrive at the line to fight out the sprint, Katusha will have one of the big favourites in their line-up in Alexander Kristoff, who came fourth in last year’s race. The Italian and the Norwegian combined perfectly in the finale of Milan-Sanremo two weeks ago, and if similar circumstances play out on Sunday, a second Monument victory in 2014 could be on the cards for the Russian ProTeam.

Katushas Alexander Kristoff fighting on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

An Open Race for Movistar Team

Despite not achieving great results in previous editions of De Ronde, Movistar Team cannot be discounted, especially with the team backing Andrey Amador. The Costa-Rican loves racing in the cobbled classics, as was proved at Gent-Wevelgem last Sunday where his determined breakaway attempt only got caught by the peloton within the final 1000 metres.

Movistar Teams Andrey Amador attacking on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

With the likes of Giovanni Visconti and JJ Rojas out with injury, Sunday provides a great opportunity for some of the squad’s youngest members, including German Jascha Sütterlin and Spaniard JuanJo Lobato, who will be taking on their first Ronde.

Canyon wishes Katusha and Movistar Team the best of luck and looks forward to an exciting race!

Provisional Lineups for our ProTeams: 
Katusha: 
GUSEV Vladimir, ISAYCHEV Vladimir, KRISTOFF Alexander, KUCHYNSKI Aliaksandr, KUZNETSOV Viacheslav, PAOLINI Luca, SMUKULIS Gatis, TSATEVICH Alexey
Movistar Team: 
AMADOR Andrey, ERVITI Imanol, GUTIéRREZ Iván, LOBATO Juan Jose, DOWSETT Alex, QUINTANA Dayer, SÜTTERLIN Jasha, VENTOSO Fran

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Swim. Canyon. Run. Canyon Triathletes Take to the Start Line Around the World

  April 4th, 2014 | 11:32 | Onlineredaktion

With a plane ticket in one hand and a bike bag full of Canyon in the other, our European based triathletes take to all corners of the globe this weekend to line up for the biggest triathlon races around as the season picks up the pace. Germany’s number one, Anne Haug, will be down in New Zealand for the first round of the ITU World Triathlon Series in Auckland, while Neils Frommhold (Germany) and Bas Diederen (Holland) take on Ironman South Africa in Port Elizabeth.

Anne Haugs Aeroad CF

Anne Haug (31) is a new-recruit to the Canyon triathlon setup and round one of the ITU World Series in Auckland marks the first competitive outing for her and her striking new custom Aeroad CF (pictured above), which should give her the upper hand over her rivals following T1. Anne has been busy preparing for the season opener in Australia over the winter, having set her sights nice and early on one long-term goal: Olympic gold at Rio 2016.

Nils Frommhold

Some 11,500 KM away in South Africa, Nils Frommhold and Bas Diederen will be diving into Nelson Mandela Bay for the start of Ironman South Africa in Port Elizabeth. Nils (27) has only recently made the transfer to long distance events having won the first Ironman he ever took part in back at Arizona in 2012. This weekend will be his third: “Before my first Ironman I had massive respect for the discipline but at my second perhaps I didn’t show enough. I see it as all as one big puzzle; you have to put it together piece by piece to get it right.”

Bas Diederen

Another rider taking on the 180 km bike leg with the Speedmax CF will be Team4Talent’s Bas Diederen. Having achieved podium results at Ironman races twice in the past, Bas is definitely one to watch out for this weekend and comes fresh from a strong performance in Abu Dhabi a couple of weeks back, where he came second overall with the fastest bike split.

Canyon wishes Anne, Nils and Bas the best of luck for the weekend ahead!

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Topeak-Ergon Racing Team and Canyon win the Cape Epic

  March 31st, 2014 | 16:38 | Onlineredaktion

The Absa Cape Epic in South Africa could hardly have gone any better for Canyon and the Topeak-Racing Team. Considered the hardest mountain bike stage race in the world, Robert Mennen and Kristian Hynek won the men’s overall while the women Sally Bigham and Esther Süss rode to a fine second place, all adding to the success of the Lux CF.

Robert Mennen und Kristian Hynek gewinnen das Cape Epic auf dem Canyon Lux CF / Photo: RTI Sports

With 8 stages totalling 718 KM and over 14850 metres of climbing through the heat, dust, rain and mud of the South African back country, the Cape Epic sits at the pinnacle of international marathon mountain bike racing. To win it once is enough to define a rider’s entire career.

Robert Mennen auf dem Canyon Lux CF beim Cape Epic / Photo: RTI Sports

In order to take on such an extreme race, having the right equipment is paramount. It’s all about the bike. With the Cape Epic now in the bag, the moniker of the Lux CF holds as true as ever – 100% Luxury Racing!

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