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Tour de France winner Froome to ride in Australia Day race

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Tour de France champion Chris Froome will join the field in a new Australia Day cycling race to be held on Melbourne’s Formula One circuit on Jan. 26.

The three-time Tour winner will lead Team Sky in the race on the Albert Park track.

The men’s and women’s events will lead into the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in Geelong, near Melbourne, on the weekend of Jan. 28-29.

Organizers also confirmed at Wednesday’s race announcement that 13 of the 19 men’s WorldTour teams will compete at Albert Park and in the Cadel Evans event.

Australian Simon Gerrans and Colombian Esteban Chavez are confirmed for the Orica-Scott team.

Brazilian cycling team faces 2nd ban for persistent doping

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AIGLE, Switzerland (AP) Brazilian team Soul Brasil Pro Cycling faces another ban from racing after two more riders were implicated in doping.

The International Cycling Union says the team will be judged by its disciplinary panel which can impose bans of up to one year.

Cycling rules allow teams to be suspended if two riders are caught doping in a one-year period.

In December, the team’s riders were suspended for 55 days after three cases involving the banned blood booster CERA since July. They included Kleber Ramos of Brazil, who competed in the Rio de Janeiro Olympic road race.

The UCI says the latest cases involve biological passport results for Alex Correia Diniz, who is provisionally suspended, and an allegation against Otavio Bulgarelli of tampering with a doping sample.

Van Avermaet wins Gent-Wevelgem for two victories in three days

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GENT, Belgium (AP) Olympic road champion Greg Van Avermaet won his second race in three days Sunday, beating fellow Belgian Jens Keukeleire in a two-man sprint finish to take the Gent-Wevelgem classic.

World champion Peter Sagan of Slovakia, who won last year’s race, finished third.

The 249-kilometer (154.7-mile) race through Belgium included two ascents of the steep, cobbled Kemmelberg hill, one of the iconic climbs of the spring classics season.

Last year’s race was overshadowed by the death of Belgian rider Antoine Demoitie after a fall.

Sagan fell Friday in the E3 Harelbeke, which Van Avermaet also won to add to his victory last month in Het Nieuwsblad.