Shorts: Crédit, Schumacher, Orbea
Crédit Agricole confirm to end of 2008, European rankings leader tests positive, two new Orbea frame
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The Crdit Agricole financial company has confirmed that it will be staying in cycling for another two years, to the end of 2008. Cycling team boss Roger Legeay described the announcement as a “show of confidence”. Legeay also announced that Giro stage winner Christophe Le Mevel and Italian Francesco Bellotti signed two-year extensions to their contracts.
– Germany’s Stefan Schumacher, current leader of the UCI’s European continental rankings, has tested positive for the banned stimulant cathine. The test was taken at the Tour of the Rheinland-Palatinate in Germany on May 14. The Shimano-Memory Corp rider won four of the five stages as well as the overall prize, and subsequently won the Ster Elektrotoer in Holland. Schumacher now has the right to request that the B sample he delivered be tested.
– The Orbea bike company has produced two “revolutionary” frames for Euskaltel team leader Iban Mayo to use at the Tour de France. The first is a carbon fibre time trial frame in which 75% of the material used is M30 carbon fibre, which according to Orbea, “has up to now been used exclusively in disciplines such as Formula 1 racing”. The new frame is reported to be exceptionally rigid and light. The second frame is for road stages and is made of super-light aluminium and weighs just 920 grammes. It is, again according to Orbea, “without doubt the lightest frame that has ever been used in the Tour”. Last year the Spanish company produced a special time trial bike for Mayo’s use in the Alpe d’Huez time trial, but the Basque rider quit the race before being able to use it.