Primoz Roglic wins Liège-Bastogne-Liège classic

Getty Images
2 Comments

LIEGE, Belgium — Tour de France runner-up Primož Roglič won the Liège-Bastogne-Liège single-day classic on Sunday after rival Julian Alaphilippe celebrated too soon.

To add insult to injury for world champion Alaphilippe, he was then penalized for an irregular sprint and dropped from second to fifth. That was for swerving into the path of Marc Hirschi during the frenetic final sprint of the 6 ½-hour race.

A photo finish showed that Roglič narrowly beat Alaphilippe after the Frenchman lifted his arms in celebration and coasted to the line.

“It’s unbelievable. It was so close,” Roglič said. “Just never stop believing.”

Hirschi moved up to finish second and Tour champion Tadej Pogačar got third.

Last month, Roglič was leading the Tour until fellow Slovenian Pogačar swiped away the lead in the penultimate stage by winning a time trial.

“Finally I managed to win something,” Roglič said. “It was definitely on my wish list to win a Monument.”

Matej Mohorič, yet another Slovenian, finished fourth.

British rider Lizzie Deignan won the women’s edition, for her first ‘Monument,’ ahead of Grace Brown of Australia.

The race, like other spring classics, was rescheduled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

CAS upholds Nairo Quintana DQ from Tour de France for opioid use

Getty Images
17 Comments

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – The disqualification of two-time Tour de France runner-up Nairo Quintana from his sixth place in the 2022 race for misuse of an opioid was confirmed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

CAS said its judges dismissed Quintana’s appeal and agreed with the International Cycling Union that the case was a medical matter rather than a doping rules violation. He will not be banned.

The court said the judges ruled “the UCI’s in-competition ban on tramadol was for medical rather than doping reasons and was therefore within the UCI’s power and jurisdiction.”

Traces of the synthetic painkiller tramadol were found in two dried blood spot samples taken from the Colombian racer five days apart in July, the UCI previously said.

Quintana’s case is among the first to rely on the dried blood spot (DBS) method of collecting samples which the World Anti-Doping Agency approved last year.

Tramadol was banned in 2019 from use at cycling races because of potential side effects. They include the risk of addiction, dizziness, drowsiness and loss of attention.

Quintana finished second in the Tour de France in 2013 and 2015, won both times by Chris Froome. He won the 2014 Giro d’Italia.

Filippo Ganna breaks cycling’s hour world record

Getty Images
9 Comments

GRENCHEN, Switzerland — Time trial specialist Filippo Ganna broke cycling’s hour record when he covered 56.792 kilometers in 60 minutes.

The Italian extended the record by more than 1.2 kilometers, the biggest jump in seven years.

Asked to describe the pain of the last five minutes, he said, “I lost energy to try to go for 57, but nothing (in the legs).”

He said he was open to another attempt at a different time of the season, when he was fresher.

Ganna took the record from British teammate Dan Bigham, who made his mark at the same Swiss velodrome on Aug. 19.