Taylor Phinney out of Paris-Roubaix due to concussion

Cannondale-Drapac confirms that Taylor Phinney is still not fit enough to ride in Paris-Roubaix on Sunday after crashing heavily during the Tour of Flanders

Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix will not feature American Cannondale-Drapac rider Taylor Phinney due to the concussion he sustained during a crash last weekend at the Tour of Flanders.

“Until yesterday, I was feeling pretty optimistic about being able to ride Roubaix this weekend,” Phinney said.

“I’d been feeling OK at the dinner table and hanging out. But then yesterday was my first ride outside. I started riding and got a little bit of a headache. Then it went away and I thought, ‘OK, I’ll be fine.’ But then it came back and I started experiencing some emotional ups and down that reminded me of the last concussion I had.”

After returning from the training ride and consulting with team doctors and management, they determined he would not line up for Sunday’s classic.

Team manager Jonathan Vaughters said, “With even the mildest of concussions, we sit the rider six days. The rider may be able to train some in that period, but racing is out of the question. Normally we encourage training to occur on the Tacx. We evaluate the rider daily, and after six days he must take a cognitive test to make sure the effects of the concussion have subsided. At that point, they may or may not be able to resume competition.”

Paris-Roubaix was one of Phinney’s targets for the year as the parcours suited his skillset well. Now, he’ll focus his training for the Amgen Tour of California in May as well as the stage one time trial at the Tour de France in Düsseldorf.

>>> Paris-Roubaix 2017: Latest news and race info

Asked how his morale is, Phinney said, “I’m frustrated. I’ve been nursing myself this whole classics season to get into these races and be with the guys, but this just happens. This happened my first season as a pro, but then I ended up having a pretty nice second part of the season.

“On the positive end, I’m more motivated. I feel more motivated than I have in a long time to put in effort for the summer. I look forward to the Tour of California and the first stage of the Tour de France. These things excite me.”

Cannondale-Drapac had earlier announced that Sep Vanmarcke would also miss Paris-Roubaix due to injuries sustained during the Tour of Flanders.


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Masters 2017: Dustin Johnson pulls out in Augusta due to back injury

Breaking news

World number one Dustin Johnson is out of the Masters at Augusta National after sustaining a back injury in a fall at his rental home on Wednesday.

The American, 32, looked set to take part after warming up on the range but he then withdrew on the first tee.

The US Open champion fell on the stairs and hurt his lower back on Wednesday.

His caddie was placing the ball on the tee for Johnson on the range, while coach Butch Harmon said pain hindered Johnson’s rest overnight.

More to follow.

Analysis

BBC Radio 5 live correspondent Iain Carter

Johnson took until the very last second to make what must have been an agonising decision to pull out. He was standing on the first tee before making the toughest call of his career. It is a severe blow for the player who has dominated golf this season.

He arrived here off the back of three big victories and was a justifiable favourite. All that has been lost through his freak fall at his rental home and the damage done to his back.

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Gabriele Detti Posts World-Leading 800 Free, Matteo Restivo Breaks Italian Record

Photo Courtesy: Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

Day three of action at the Italian National Championships in Riccione saw the country’s two distance stars, Gregorio Paltrinieri and Gabriele Detti, go head-to-head in the men’s 800 free and post the top two times in the world, while Matteo Restivo took down a national record in the men’s 200 back.

The session opened with Piero Codia touching out Andrea Vergani for the win in the men’s 50 fly, 23.67 to 23.700. Codia’s time matched the FINA “A” standard in the event and qualified him for this summer’s World Championships in Budapest. Matteo Rivolta took third in 23.85.

The top three finishers in the women’s 400 IM all comfortably cleared the FINA “A” time, but it was Stefania Pirozzi who pulled away from the field to win in 4:38.40. Sara Franceschi took second in 4:40.18, and third went to Ilaria Cusinato (4:40.70).

In the top heat of the men’s 800, Detti built up an early lead over Paltrinieri and extended the margin throughout the race. He ended up finishing in 7:41.64, while Paltrinieri came in more than seven seconds back in 7:48.89. Both times easily cleared the FINA “A” cut and also the previous top time in the world, Mykhaylo Romanchuk’s 7:54.34. Domenico Acerenza cracked eight minutes to finish third in 7:59.52.

Margherita Panziera dominated the field in the women’s 200 back, clearing the “A” cut with her time of 2:10.88. Letizia Paruscio was second in 2:14.21, just ahead of Giulia Ramatelli (2:14.49).

Restivo won the men’s 200 back by more than a second, and his final time of 1:56.55 cleared the previous Italian record of 1:56.91 set by Damiano Lestingi in 2009. Luca Mencarini also got under the “A” cut in finishing second in 1:57.81, and Christopher Ciccarese was third in 1:58.35.

In the women’s 100 fly final, Silvia Di Pietro took an early lead, but Ilaria Bianchi ran her down and touched the wall first in 57.90. Di Pietro, however, did clear the “A” cut in finishing second in 58.07. Elena De Liddo was third in 58.28.

Full results

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Tributes paid to mountain bike and cyclocross legend Steve Tilford after death at age 57

The MTB hall of famer was killed in a tragic road accident on Wednesday morning

The cycling community is morning the loss of cyclocross and mountain bike legend Steve Tilford, 57, of Topeak, Kansas, who was killed in the early morning hours of Wednesday in eastern Utah while travelling home to Denver from a San Diego training camp.

“The incident happened about 12.30 am when a semitrailer on I-70 drifted off the right shoulder, overcorrected while getting back on the road and tipped onto its side, blocking two of the eastbound lanes,” said Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Todd Royce.

The overturned semi came to a rest on it’s side, blocking the eastbound lanes of interstate 70 at mile marker 214.

Minutes later, a Mercedes-Benz sprinter van driven by Tilford drove into the semi. Tilford and his passenger Vincent Davis were initially hurt, but able to get out of their vehicle and inspect the damage.

While standing next to their vehicle, a second semi, driven by 70-year-old Stanley Williams of Grand Junction, Colorado crashed into the initial overturned semi still blocking the interstate, then hit the sprinter van and Tilford, ultimately killing him.

Williams also died from injuries at the scene of the accident.

Davis was treated at a hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado and later release with minor injuries. The driver of the first semi was reportedly uninjured.

Tilford, inducted into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in 2000, was a five-time masters’ world mountain bike champion and two-time masters’ world cyclocross champion.

He had been an active racer across multiple disciplines since 1975 and in 1983, even held the US hour record on the track.

Some of those in the cycling community paid tribute to Tilford after the news broke.


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Team Sky to use new Pinarello electronic suspension at Paris-Roubaix

Pinarello has collaborated with HiRide to produce a new Pinarello Dogma with an Electronic Suspension System which can adapt to the terrain it is being ridden over

Ahead of Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix, Team Sky riders have a new weapon at their disposal in the form of a new adaptive suspension system fitted to their Pinarello Dogma K8-S bikes.

Launched two years ago, the K8-S model was characterised by an elastomer insert suspension system, fitted at the seatstay, top tube junction.

While novel, this design gave added compliance even when not required, such as when riding on smooth roads.

To this end, Pinarello has collaborated with HiRide to develop the eDSS 2.0 (Electronic Dogma Suspension System), something the Italian brand is hailing as “a revolutionary system in the cycling world.”

The new system is designed to adapt the suspension depending upon the terrain, meaning that it will give lots of travel on the cobbled sectors and minimal travel on the smooth road sections of Sundays monument.

According to Pinarello the system consists of “six axis accelerometers and gyroscopes able to read the road and to understand the dynamics of the vehicle, by adapting the suspensions at all types of terrain, from asphalt to more rugged cobbles, in few milliseconds.”


Watch: A close look at Luke Rowe’s Pinarello K8


Fausto Pinarello said: “I am very happy with this new and ambitious project that PinarelloLab developed with the collaboration of HiRide.

“The introduction of an electro-hydraulic control system establishes an important step forward in the technological evolution of our bikes, improving performance and increasing safety.”

It will be interesting to see if this new tech gives Ian Stannard an edge in the Hell of the North.

Team Sky’s head of operations, Carsten Jeppesen attests that the “eDDS2.0 is a fantastic innovation on our bikes, it gives to our riders the best of both worlds: stiffness on normal road and comfort on the cobbles.”

According to Pinarello, the new system was fitted to Ian Stannard’s bike and raced at Scheldeprijs on Wednesday.


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Driver acquitted in crowd-funded prosecution relating to cyclist’s death

Old Bailey jury finds driver not guilty of causing the death by careless driving of cyclist Michael Mason after Cyclists’ Defence Fund brings private prosecution

A driver accused of causing the death of a cyclist by careless driving has been found not guilty by a jury at the Old Bailey after the case was brought to court by a landmark private prosecution.

Gail Purcell, 58, of St Albans appeared at the Old Bailey after the Cyclists’ Defence Fund (CDF) had brought a private prosecution against her for causing the death of cyclist Michael Mason, 70, due to careless driving. The CDF – which is part of Cycling UK – had raised £80,000 from members of the public to assist in funding the case.

Mason died of his injuries after colliding with Purcell’s Nissan Juke on February 25 2014 on Regent Street, London.

Mason was hit from behind by the car, suffering a brain injury. He died in hospital on March 14 2014 having never regained consciousness. Purcell had pleaded not guilty.

>>> Driver on trial at Old Bailey after crowd-funded prosecution over death of cyclist

The Metropolitan Police had elected not to refer the case to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), so the CDF took up the case on behalf of Mason’s family.

Mason’s daughter Anna Tatton-Brown commented on the jury’s decision, saying: “My family and I respect the decision the jury have reached, although we are obviously disappointed. It seems that failing to be aware of what’s in front of you while you’re driving is an acceptable mistake, not careless, and that no explanation for that failure is necessary.

“We do, however, draw some comfort from the fact that the evidence was finally put to a jury, something that should have happened long ago. It should not have taken the intervention of CDF, and the support of many members of the public, to bring this case to court. Given that the Judge accepted that there was a case which the jury had to consider, we would hope that the Police will now conduct a review into their investigation, their rush to blame the victim, their refusal to seek CPS advice, and consider what lessons might be learned.”

CDF spokesperson Duncan Dollimore said that they were “disappointed and concerned” at the outcome.

“While we accept the jury’s decision, CDF are disappointed and concerned about the message this conveys to the general public regarding driving standards,” said Dollimore.

“Careless driving is supposed to be driving which falls below the standard expected of a competent and careful driver. If failing to see an illuminated cyclist on a well-lit road is not careless driving, and no explanation for that failure is required, that reinforces the arguments Cycling UK has made through our Road Justice Campaign for many years: namely the definition and identification of bad driving offences needs urgent review.

“Notwithstanding the jury’s decision, we believe it was right to bring this case to court given the Metropolitan Police’s unwillingness to do so. We do question why the Police failed to obtain witness evidence from relevant eye-witnesses which the legal team instructed by CDF were able to secure. If they had done so they would have recognised, as the Judge did yesterday, that this was a case which rightly had to be put before a jury. We believe they should review their investigation practices involving vulnerable road users, and their engagement with the victims’ families.”


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Rachel Stratton-Mills Joins Coaching Staff at Arizona State

Photo Courtesy: Chuckarelei/Pac-12

Rachel Stratton-Mills has joined the coaching staff at Arizona State University. Head coach Bob Bowman confirmed the news to Swimming World.

“I’m extremely excited for this opportunity,” Stratton-Mills said. “It’s great to be back in college coaching and certainly working with Bob and all the great coaches at ASU. There is so much positive energy surrounding the future of the program. I’m thrilled to be a part of it.”

Bowman echoed those thoughts in welcoming Stratton-Mills to his staff.

“I couldn’t be more pleased to have someone with Rachel’s credentials join our staff,” Bowman said. “She has demonstrated success coaching at the international, national and collegiate level. Her wealth of experience will be invaluable as we continue to build the Sun Devil program.”

Stratton-Mills was previously the head coach at Asphalt Green Unified Aquatics in New York City and has previous experience as an assistant in NCAA competition. While at AGUA, she coached Lia Neal onto the U.S. Olympic team in 2012 as a member of the 400 free relay, and Neal helped the Americans capture a bronze medal.

Stratton-Mills left AGUA in 2015 as she and husband Glenn Mills, the founder of GoSwimtook a year-long sabbatical from coaching to travel across the country and visit various swim clubs.

She replaces Misty Hyman on staff with the Sun Devils. Hyman was a senior assistant coach with the program for two years before leaving to pursue other opportunities after the NCAA championships.

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4 Fun Running Workouts That Will Put a Smile on Your Face

Running is often considered a boring sport. But that’s only because non-runners don’t know how to have any fun!

Fun Running Workouts

Running can be enormously exciting – if you challenge yourself.

There are so many opportunities to spice up your training:

  • Tired of the roads? Trail running is more fun, serene, and exciting
  • Want to challenge yourself? Run track workouts for a more controlled environment
  • Bored? Vary your shoes, workouts, goals, and training surfaces

There are nearly countless ways to make running more fun.

But today let’s focus on one that every runner can implement this week: the type of faster workouts that you run.

Over my nearly 20 years of running, I’ve encountered more types of workouts than I can really count. Everything from workouts on the track, trail, road, and hills to sessions that focus on aerobic development, 5k-specific fitness, or maximal velocity.

Depending on your goal, there are a wide variety of workouts to help you build your fitness.

I’ve previously touched on some of these fundamental workouts:

We’re doing something different today: we’re focusing on fun workouts (yes, there exists such a thing!).

This post is an excerpt from my book 52 Workouts, 52 Weeks, One Faster: A Workout A Week for the Next Year.

Fun Runs, With or Without a Group

“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” – Proverb

You can’t train seriously every day of the year. Even elite athletes take extended periods off from running or hack around doing fun workouts.

When you just can’t bring yourself to get on the track or you need a break from the structure of an interval, hill, or tempo workout then try something fun.

These workouts are less structured, based more on “feel” and some don’t even include any fast running. They are meant to rejuvenate your body, stimulate your mind, and give your body a break from the rigors of serious training.

You’re going to need a partner for most of these workouts. Running with a group, especially when you’re not being competitive, is a fun way to enjoy your training and add a much-needed social element to running.

Enjoy yourself. Smile. Have some fun.

Barefoot Running

Yes, barefoot running is a workout! It’s challenging and works all of the small muscles in your feet and lower legs that have atrophied through years of shod running.

If you’re new to running without shoes, start with 1-2 minutes on a soft surface like an artificial turf field, grass, or golf course. Keep the pace easy and take the next 2-3 days off from running barefoot.

Gradually increase the time you’re running barefoot until you can run about a mile. Most of the strength benefits of barefoot running can be realized in a mile run per week (or two half-mile runs).

Indian Run (Group Fartlek)

This workout is best done with at least five people. In a single file line, the last runner in the group has to catch up to the front of the pack. She then becomes the leader and can run as fast or slow as she wants to.

Different paces are encouraged to vary the workout and keep things interesting. The other runners don’t know how fast the leader will run so the element of surprise is constant.

You can also run this workout on a hilly course to “run the terrain” and make sure everyone is paying attention. Find a local track club, group of friends, or round up your old running buddies and hit the roads.

Dice Workout

Preferably run on a track, the Dice Workout is a fun way to break up a hard day and is usually reserved for when you are not in a race-specific training period.

For this type of workout, 600-1000m intervals work best. Before each rep, roll a die – each number corresponds to a pace pattern that you’ll run for the entire rep. The paces aren’t exact, rather it’s the effort that counts.

For example:

  • 1 = alternate easy / medium / hard every 100 meters
  • 2 = alternate easy / hard every 200 meters
  • 3 = run the whole interval at a medium effort
  • 4 = run the whole interval at a hard effort
  • 5 = alternate medium / hard every 100 meters
  • 6 = alternate easy / medium every 100 meters

Pace Perfect

This is a fun workout that develops your intuitive sense of pacing. It’s not to be run fast. Instead, go your normal distance run pace.

Pick a loop that’s between 1-2 miles. You’re going to time the first loop on your watch and note the time. Run another 3-5 loops and use your watch’s split feature to keep track of every loop’s split time.

But the key here is not to look at your watch after the first lap. Try to run the same exact pace for every single loop, while splitting your watch to keep a record of your actual times.

You’re only allowed to look at your watch when you finish. How close were you to running an even pace?

Want More Workouts?

There are obviously a lot more workouts that you can run – these are just the fun running workouts! In the full book, I cover:

  • Endurance is King – Become an Aerobic Powerhouse
  • Sprinting 101: Distance Runners Need Speed, Too
  • Fartlek Workouts (Skip the Track)
  • Hills = Strength
  • Get on the Pain Train: VO2 Max Workouts (and more)

You can check out the full table of contents on Amazon here.

More importantly, I want to challenge you to think differently about the workouts you complete and the structure of those workouts.

Get creative. Think differently. Challenge yourself to run a unique workout (while still moving toward your goals).

And I’d love to hear from you!

In the comments below, let the Strength Running community know about your favorite workout.

How is it run?

Why do you run it?

When in the training cycle is it completed?

I’m looking forward to learning more about your favorite workout!

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Sainsbury’s treating incident of its lorry in close-pass with cyclist ‘very seriously’

Sainsbury’s issues statement after video of supermarket lorry passing near cyclist causes online controversy

Sainsbury’s supermarket has issued a response to an online video purportedly showing one of its lorries in a ‘close pass’ with a cyclist, saying that it is treating the incident “very seriously”.

YouTube user CBL posted a video on March 29 of the Sainsbury’s branded heavy goods vehicle driving on his right-hand-side as he rode in a cycle lane.

The video was then picked up by several people on social media, and circulated widely.

A representative of Sainsbury’s initially responded to a query about the video on Twitter, saying “Hi Karl, the driver is in his own lane, this has already been brought to our attention. Have a good day. Faiza.”

>>> West Midlands Police targetting of ‘close pass’ drivers a success in improving cyclists’ safety

The response prompted an adverse reaction from many Twitter users, including former pro rider and cycling safety advocate Chris Boardman.

Boardman wrote: “I don’t normally retweet this stuff but watch the video and then I’ll show you @sainsburys response.” He then added: “THATS A HUMAN BEING @sainsburys how about if it was one of your kids, would you feel the same?”

When contacted by Cycling Weekly for this article, Sainsbury’s issued a statement saying that the incident was under investigation.

A Sainsbury’s spokesperson said, “We’d like to provide a reassurance that this incident is being treated very seriously. Our drivers receive extensive safety training and we are now reviewing the footage and investigating.”

The company also underlined that it had introduced “cycle safe” lorries two years ago, which included proximity sensors and video cameras giving the driver a 360-degree vision of the surrounding road. Drivers undergo “further driver training on higher safety standards in the truck”.

West Midlands Police, who introduced an initiative to educate drivers on avoiding dangerous close-passes of cyclists, advise that vehicles should give cyclists at least 1.5 metres’ room.


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Davis Cup: Britain v France quarter-final draw announced

Kyle Edmund

Davis Cup – France v Great Britain
Dates: 7-9 April Venue: Rouen, France
Coverage: Live on BBC One or BBC Two across all three days of competition, with extra coverage on BBC Red Button and online, connected TVs, the BBC Sport website and app (full coverage details)

Kyle Edmund will face Lucas Pouille in the first match of Great Britain’s Davis Cup quarter-final against France on Friday.

Dan Evans takes on Jeremy Chardy, who replaced Gilles Simon on Wednesday, in the second singles match.

Jamie Murray and Dom Inglot are due to play Nicolas Mahut and Julien Benneteau in Saturday’s doubles, before the reverse singles on Sunday.

The tie will take place on indoor clay at the Palais des sports de Rouen.

Britain beat France at the same stage on their way to the 2015 title, but will be without world number one Andy Murray as he recovers from an elbow injury.

France are also without the injured Gael Monfils, world number 10 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who is short of match fitness, and Richard Gasquet, who is recovering from appendix surgery.

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