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froome19

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Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
« on: November 02, 2014, 19:39 »
Q&A Session:
Egon Van Kessel, DS of Wiggle Honda

Velorooms is delighted to announce a Q&A this coming Wednesday with Wiggle Honda DS Egon Van Kessel!
This Q&A will take place live on 05 November 2014, 18:30 CET but you can start posting questions before then.

A brief background to Egon's illustrious career in cycling:



Egon, who was a professional rider in the late 1970s, is one of the most experienced coaches in the sport of cycling, having spent many years working with the top names in women's cycling.

He was the national coach for the Dutch elite men and women at the World Championships and Olympic games from 2001 to 2008 and worked with the top Dutch riders in the country. Indeed he has worked for the Dutch Cycling Federation for more than 14 years. Egon was also down to be a Directeur Sportif on the Australian Pro Continental team Pegasus before its collapse. 

However, Egon is most well known for his highly successful stint as Team Manager of the Cervelo TestTeam where he led them to finish the season as World Number One in 2010. Tragically BigMat pulled their sponsorship and the team folded.

After a brief hiatus he is now back in the fold with Wiggle Honda as a Directeur Sportif which is a British registered women's team which is now entering its third year in the peloton. Their 2014 season was dominated by their rout at the Tour Cycliste Féminin International de l'Ardèche, where they won 4 stages The team have also just recently signed Velorooms favourite and previous Question & Answerer, Chloe Hosking. She joins Ellen Roe, Annette Edmondson, Mara Abbott, Elisa Longo Borghini and a number of other high profile riders as new signings to join for 2015. With all the new additions there is no doubt that 2015 will be a hugely exciting year for the young Wiggle Honda team!




Post your questions for Egon here...

We'll also accept questions via Twitter directed to @velorooms with the hashtag #askegon
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 11:30 by Fus87 »
    RIP Keith

    LukasCPH

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel: DS Wiggle Honda
    « Reply #1 on: November 02, 2014, 20:16 »
    With *nz *dk Linda Villumsen on his new team, I have to ask this: With his first name, how often have Danes referred to Egon Olsen of the famous Olsen-banden when he was around? :D
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel: DS Wiggle Honda
    « Reply #2 on: November 02, 2014, 20:36 »
    I am Australian, so I say this or ask this with a big smile, While Rochelle is one the hardest working and driven people going around it seems from the outside looking in and a great force in Womens cycling, but does her accent drive you insane ?  :D


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  • Of course, if this turns out someday to be the industry standard integrated handlebar-computer-braking solution then I'll eat my kevlar-reinforced aerodynamic hat.

    Larri Nov 12, 2014

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel: DS Wiggle Honda
    « Reply #3 on: November 02, 2014, 21:10 »
    With *nz *dk Linda Villumsen on his new team, I have to ask this: With his first name, how often have Danes referred to Egon Olsen of the famous Olsen-banden when he was around? :D

    I don't know if it affects the question or not, but she's no longer at Wiggle.  :P
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  • LukasCPH

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel: DS Wiggle Honda
    « Reply #4 on: November 02, 2014, 21:11 »
    I don't know if it affects the question or not, but she's no longer at Wiggle.  :P
    Darn it. The question still stands, I'm sure he's met other Danes. ;)
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #5 on: November 02, 2014, 21:42 »
    Okay an obvious question from me and maybe we can hope for a exclusive answer for Velorooms.  :P

    What's the Bronzini situation? She staying with Wiggle-Honda in 2015, or moving on to a new team?


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  • froome19

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #6 on: November 02, 2014, 21:48 »
    With the departure of a couple of star British riders. Does it feel like a British squad or is it simply lots of different nationalities being patched together with no particular allegiance to any country?
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #7 on: November 03, 2014, 09:23 »
    1st congratulations on a brilliant transfer season, seemed at the start there was riders leaving, rather than signing, it could be argued that you have 4 top line sprinters now, how is that going to work during the season ?

    There will be a GC focus as well now,  adds another level to the team set up for races as well, gets more complicated in a good way I guess, how difficult is that going to be to organise with so many new faces?

    With many new races popping up Strande, La Course, The womens tour, the 3 day Pro cycling challenge and Tour of California, Vuelta 1 day race etc etc, it seems to ne there needs to be some calender organisation or there maybe too many new races getting upset when teams do nit show with their stars, how do you see your calendar for 2015? And is that an issue you think re calender organisation?
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #8 on: November 03, 2014, 12:04 »
    A topical question.

    Should Team Time-Trials be part of the World Championships?

    From a women's team point of view, does the publicity and precious live coverage outweigh the big negative of the cost? Is this different do you think from a men's team view point? What do you think about the possible moving of the Worlds TTT away from Richmond and Qatar to a European venue to save money?

    If you think they should be a part of the Worlds, should there be more TTTs during the year to give the teams more practice (currently only two other TTTs)?

    Finally, after skipping this year's edition, will Wiggle-Honda enter the Worlds TTT in 2015 (wherever it ends up being staged)?

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #9 on: November 03, 2014, 13:10 »
    Being no ABP for women as yet, how from looking for clean riders do you screen,  with the JTL/sky process we know in the mens side it is less than perfect,  how are things done at Wiggle ?
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #10 on: November 03, 2014, 13:54 »
    Ok last 1 from me, maybe  :D

    Chloe Hosking did our 1sr Q&A session and a VR favourite,  what is expected of her 2015/16 ?
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #11 on: November 04, 2014, 17:23 »
    Bump or I might  ;)
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  • Slow Rider

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #12 on: November 04, 2014, 20:01 »
    1. There have been a lot of transfers around your team this year. Could you give us some insight into how that goes in the women's peloton? Do riders usually only sign one year contracts and negotiate at the end of every year? And how strong is the position of the riders in that regard; can they pick and choose or do they just have to accept whatever terms the teams throw at them?

    2. Related to that, how do you find and develop young (neo-pro) riders? Especially as women's U23 racing is a lot less developed than at the men's side of the sport. What are the must-follow races for team managers scouting for young talent, and how do you test or screen potential candidates for a neo-pro spot?

    3. What do you think about teams like Lotto-Belisol and Giant-Shimano having a women's team in addition to their men's selection? Is combining men's and women's teams it a good thing that should be encouraged for all teams, or is it important to keep prominent women-only teams like Wiggle-Honda currently is?

    4. Since I'm currently in cyclo-cross mode, a question about that. Do you think teams like your own Wiggle Honda could / should invest in that part of the sport more? For example, by signing a prominent (British) crosser like Wyman?

    5. One of the great benefits of cyclocross (and MTB) is how it helps riders improve bike-handling. In the men's peloton we saw that last summer, with Lars Boom riding away from everyone on wet cobblestones at the Tour; in the women's peloton we see it every day Marianne Vos touches her bike. Should more developing riders - male and female - be encouraged by their teams to pick up a cross or MTB bike once in a while?

    6. As a former Dutch national coach, what did you think of the awful - in my eyes at least - showing of the Dutch men's team at the RR World Championships?

    7. Finally a question about your personal ambitions. Where do you want to go from here? If a big men's team would come knocking, would you accept or would you prefer to stay with the women?

    Yes, a lot of questions, sorry about that.. Just pick whichever suit you most ;)
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #13 on: November 05, 2014, 08:01 »
    Haha, never a Danish person referred to that Egon (Olsen). By the way, Villumsen is not in the Team for 2015
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #14 on: November 05, 2014, 08:08 »
    Egon , why I am not sure but we have a standard question in this thread you will see some famous stories - http://velorooms.com/index.php?topic=5821.0

    you can have one from yourself, a  "friend " or a rider. names are not required of course

    ps :welcome to VR and thanks for taking the time, looking forward to tonight
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #15 on: November 05, 2014, 10:22 »
    You have worked with both male and female cyclists.
    How would you compare the two genders' athletic levels?
    Here in Denmark the women are often racing in a peloton with the men's category B. Is that a level playing field in your opinion?
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #16 on: November 05, 2014, 10:27 »
    Hi  :hi  and welcome to velorooms.

    Firstly - a huge thanks for doing our Q&A, its always nice to have the opportunity to ask questions and chat with people involved in the sport.

    A few from me

    1 - congrats on a great transfer program.  What would you consider a success for 2015?   What are your targets?

    2 - what kind of budget is required for a womens team these days?  and what percentage of the budget is on rider wages as opposed to travel costs/equipment etc?   

    3 - when recruiting new riders - how important is 'team culture' in deciding who will fit?  Is it the number 1 or is it a case of recruiting for talent and hoping they will fit in with the team?

    4 - what do you think the UCI needs to do to promote and assist the development of womens cycling?  Has Brian Cookson made any progress or is he just coasting along and hoping that things will happen that he can claim?

    5 - what did you think of the "La Course" race on the final day of the Tour de France?   What could we do to improve on that (besides of course actually broadcasting the podium ceremony instead of showing the neutral zone crap of the men the second the race finished  :fp)


    Again - thanks for your time, and best of luck for the 2015 season
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  • froome19

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #17 on: November 05, 2014, 17:43 »
    Hello all and welcome to Velorooms 3rd Live Q&A.

    We are hugely priviliged this time time around to have answering your questions, Egon Van Kessel, is one of the most experienced figures there is in the Womens Cycling and has just recently joined the Wiggle Honda team as a DS.

    Egon will be answering all your questions during the next hour. Feel free to post your own questions during the Q&A and Egon will try and answer them all time permitting. 

    Finally, a huge thank you to Egon for giving of his time to answer all our questions.
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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #18 on: November 05, 2014, 17:52 »
    I am Australian, so I say this or ask this with a big smile, While Rochelle is one the hardest working and driven people going around it seems from the outside looking in and a great force in Womens cycling, but does her accent drive you insane ?  :D
    I have no problem with her accent. I understand the Australian accent very well like other English accents except in the US the southern accent.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 17:54 by froome19, Reason: quoted question »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #19 on: November 05, 2014, 18:03 »
    With the departure of a couple of star British riders. Does it feel like a British squad or is it simply lots of different nationalities being patched together with no particular allegiance to any country?
    We still have British riders in the Team and the British program is for us very important. So for me it is a British Team but also with riders from all over the World.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 18:05 by froome19 »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #20 on: November 05, 2014, 18:38 »
    1st congratulations on a brilliant transfer season, seemed at the start there was riders leaving, rather than signing, it could be argued that you have 4 top line sprinters now, how is that going to work during the season ?
    Not all sprinters will participate in the same race. Normal only two max in each race. Also those sprinters not  in the best shape have to work for the others, next races the others will work for them. I will try to avoid two sprinters in a top shape in the same race.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 18:39 by froome19 »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #21 on: November 05, 2014, 18:42 »

    There will be a GC focus as well now,  adds another level to the team set up for races as well, gets more complicated in a good way I guess, how difficult is that going to be to organise with so many new faces?

    We have indeed also a GC focus. Next year with riders like Mara Abbot and LongeBorghini, we have two excelent GC riders. We have also some good TT riders, strong enough to close gaps if needed and also a few young riders who have to learn a lot and also to work as a Team. I am very confident that we can go for results in the GC's with this Team.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 18:43 by froome19 »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #22 on: November 05, 2014, 18:46 »

    With many new races popping up Strande, La Course, The womens tour, the 3 day Pro cycling challenge and Tour of California, Vuelta 1 day race etc etc, it seems to ne there needs to be some calender organisation or there maybe too many new races getting upset when teams do nit show with their stars, how do you see your calendar for 2015? And is that an issue you think re calender organisation?

    For 2015, we have a different calendar than this year. We will also look at the Worlds in the US and prepare our riders for that event. This means that we follow a program that at the end of the season is a good preparation for the Worlds. The TTT will be an important gaol also next season. We are happy with the new races and we will for sure participate in most of them when possible.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 18:48 by froome19 »

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #23 on: November 05, 2014, 18:52 »
    A topical question.

    Should Team Time-Trials be part of the World Championships?

    From a women's team point of view, does the publicity and precious live coverage outweigh the big negative of the cost? Is this different do you think from a men's team view point? What do you think about the possible moving of the Worlds TTT away from Richmond and Qatar to a European venue to save money?

    If you think they should be a part of the Worlds, should there be more TTTs during the year to give the teams more practice (currently only two other TTTs)?

    Finally, after skipping this year's edition, will Wiggle-Honda enter the Worlds TTT in 2015 (wherever it ends up being staged)?
    Like I wrote before, next year the TTT is very important for us. I am happy with the TTT as a part of the Worlds. It has a great tradition from the past when we had the men's TTT with country's. I feld sad when it disapeared from the Worlds schedule in the mid '90's. It is not a problem that once in a decade, a worldchampionship is not in Europe. It cost maybe extra money but when you have succes it also pays the Team back.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 18:57 by froome19 »

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #24 on: November 05, 2014, 18:55 »
    Ok last 1 from me, maybe  :D

    Chloe Hosking did our 1sr Q&A session and a VR favourite,  what is expected of her 2015/16 ?
    I expect that Chloe will do very well next year. Our program in 2015, is for her a very good program and she will have enough chances to show her skills so she will have  results. I think Chloe is happy with our program.
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 19:00 by froome19 »

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #25 on: November 05, 2014, 18:59 »
    Hi  :hi  and welcome to velorooms.

    Firstly - a huge thanks for doing our Q&A, its always nice to have the opportunity to ask questions and chat with people involved in the sport.

    A few from me

    1 - congrats on a great transfer program.  What would you consider a success for 2015?   What are your targets?
     
    The most important targets are the spring classics like Tour of Flanders and Fleche Wallone. The Giro for women, Le Tour in Paris and the TTT at the Worlds. But this does not mean that other races are not important. We will try to win every race we participate. I know this will not happen but we will go for it.
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 19:23 by froome19 »

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #26 on: November 05, 2014, 19:02 »

    2 - what kind of budget is required for a womens team these days?  and what percentage of the budget is on rider wages as opposed to travel costs/equipment etc?   

    Budgets fior women teams are much lower than for Pro men teams. Think about between 100.000 and 1.000.000 euro. Teams with low budgets have a huge cost for traveling and hotels. The teams with a big budget have a huge cost for salary's.
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 19:08 by froome19 »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #27 on: November 05, 2014, 19:06 »
    When recruiting new riders for a team, it is very important to look at the composition of the old team. You know why you was succesful and why not in some  races. With this knowledge you can compose a balanced team. But I also know that it is not always easy how to analyze results and if you don't analyze or make mistakes with this you never find a good composition.
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  • Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #28 on: November 05, 2014, 19:12 »

    4 - what do you think the UCI needs to do to promote and assist the development of womens cycling?  Has Brian Cookson made any progress or is he just coasting along and hoping that things will happen that he can claim?

    I am still disappointed that the UCI not has a real answer how to develop women cycling. They should know that women cycling is total different than men's cycling. An example: I do not agree with radio's in men cycling but in women cycling it is necessary to use them so races will be much more exciting. The tactical level in women cycling is that high so I would support the use of radio communication. Some years ago I explained that together with some other women team director's to the UCI but without result.
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  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 19:18 by froome19 »

    Egon Van Kessel

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    Re: Q&A: Egon Van Kessel Wiggle Honda DS
    « Reply #29 on: November 05, 2014, 19:16 »
    1. There have been a lot of transfers around your team this year. Could you give us some insight into how that goes in the women's peloton? Do riders usually only sign one year contracts and negotiate at the end of every year? And how strong is the position of the riders in that regard; can they pick and choose or do they just have to accept whatever terms the teams throw at them?
    Like in men cycling, it depends on the level of the rider for how long they have a contract. it also depends on the sponsor contract. But most women riders have 1 year contracts.
  • ReplyReply
  • « Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 19:19 by froome19 »

     

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