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  • More than any other rider on EF Education First, Lachlan Morton has availed himself of the team's “alternative calendar” of off-road ultra-endurance events and gravel grinders, as the American WorldTour team works to expand its portfolio. The 27-year-old Australian is at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah this week, his first road tour and only second road race since the Amgen Tour of California in May. Morton has been focusing on the mass-start events where he competes against a handful of pros and sometimes thousands of citizen riders. “They’re all events I’ve always wanted to do,” Morton told Cyclingnews Saturday before the start of stage 5 in Utah. “So to be able to have a team that backs you to go do it and to be able to race professionally, for me it’s kind of a dream situation. I really want to race any of them, because they’re all new experiences for me."ADVERTISEMENT After competing in the Tour of California in May, Morton went off road in Kansas for the Dirty Kanza at the beginning of June. Morton was fourth in the 360km gravel race, crossing the line in more than 10 hours. Morton raced...

  • Mathieu van der Poel lost the overall lead at the Arctic Race of Norway as he was struck down by illness ahead of the crucial stage 3 to the top of the Storheia mountain. The Dutchman, who won the opening stage from a reduced peloton before finishing second behind Bryan Coquard in Friday's bunch sprint, had always suggested the Storheia summit finish – 3.5km at 11.8 per cent – might be too hard for him, especially after a four-month absence from road racing. To stand a chance of keeping Alexey Lutsenko and Warren Barguil – both within 10 seconds – at bay he'd have needed to be at the very height of his powers. As it was, he was suffering with a head cold and, despite a spirited resistance, finished in 23rd place.ADVERTISEMENT "I was not completely broken, but I got a bit sick last night," Van der Poel said. "I felt pretty bad on the bike all day. I tried, but I immediately felt there was not much I could do about it. "My nose was blocked and I had a headache. Above all I had a lot of problems with my head and felt...

  • Canyon-SRAM are the current – and final – world team time trial champions as the UCI removed the discipline from the World Championships program in 2018 after seven years, replacing it with a mixed relay (three men, three women) for national teams. They were among the favourites ahead of Saturday's PostNord Vårgårda WestSweden TTT but finished second after only starting with five riders. "Alexis Ryan was supposed to race, but she is not feeling well after the crash in London," said Lisa Klein. "We are still young riders, and the health has first priority, so the team decided not to let her start. Our training went smooth, but it is different at race speed. We could feel from the start that the sixth rider was missing. On the way out, with a tailwind, it is much faster with six. I think we can be happy with our result with five riders." Canyon-SRAM team manager Ronny Lauke told Cyclingnews that the changed World Championships program has also caused a change in the team's focus. Without the title of world champion to aim for, trade TTTs no longer have the same priority. The team has won the world title on five occasions...

  • After a terrible 18 months, in which he considered walking away from the sport, Warren Barguil declared himself 'back on track' as he claimed the overall lead of the Arctic Race of Norway on Saturday. The French champion was unable to take stage honours at the summit of the searingly steep Storheia climb, but his second place finish was enough to take him into the yellow-and-orange jersey after Mathieu van der Poel fell away. Barguil signed for Arkea-Samsic on the back of two stage wins and the mountains classification at the 2017 Tour de France, but the move to his 'native' Brittany team was slow to work out. The complete lack of results and form from 2018 had continued into 2019, but Saturday's result in Norway continued something of a summer turnaround after victory in the French nationals and a top-10 overall finish at the Tour de France.ADVERTISEMENT "It's already a good result after a difficult start to the season. I'm really back on track," Barguil told reporters on top of Storheia. "Last year was a really hard year for me. I almost stopped cycling. But now I continue to experience these moments, and I'm just...

  • The CPA International rider association has criticised the BinckBank Tour and the UCI, suggesting the race does not deserve a place in the UCI WorldTour after a series of safety concerns and issues during this year's race. Riders took to social media to complain about course design and safety after stage 2, with Deceuninck-QuickStep domestique Tim Declerq writing: "Hypocrisy of the cycling world. First we have a really touching minute of silence # ForBjorg, 5' later we have to destroy each other again on a bike-wide course with a million corners." Three-time stage winner Sam Bennett of Bora-Hansgrohe doing the same after Friday's stage, highlighting the dangers of the extruding feet of the barriers in the final 200 metres of the stage.ADVERTISEMENT "I'd love to know the thought process behind those barriers before 200m to go!" the Irish national champion wrote on Twitter. "This sport is dangerous enough, we race above 60km in a final like this. It is not acceptable! @cpacycling time show your presence." Race organiser Rob Discart responded to rider concerns in an interview with Sporza, comparing the race route to those of the Flanders Classics, and saying that the nature of the...

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