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t-72

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OK - since this forum has featured discussion thread for the inevitable Norwegian invasion into the higher ranked classes, I thing we should also have one for this year - when what we foresaw as inevitable has finally happened, and it is as official as this:

UNO-X #unox PRO TEAM registration at UCI
Extra: this thread has just signed a contract extension with velorooms for the duration of the 2022 season!

At the time of writing this is already old news and the talk on the town is the sensation of Torstein Træen finishing in 9th position as best Euro rider in Tour of Colombia, between Sergio Henao and Esteban Chaves on the GC classification. Note that he also scored a top 5th one of the uphill stages. Definetly the first major surprise of this season. There is likely to be more to follow (not only from #unox) but right now there's a wave of suspicion and more or less doping accusations thrown at Træen, especially from Danish journalists.
Træen is one of a handful Norwegian riders that may have been somewhat kept off the charts by the peculiar Norwegian domestic races in the Norgescup. In the land of the mountain monkeys (to use the danish nickname) there has been no regular races featuring long climbs until most recent years. The introduction of the Tour te Fjells (Norwegian pun better translated as "tour up the mountain"), a - (guess who, yes - them) - Uno-X sponsored race in the Hallingdal Valley area has led to climbers actually finding a way up in Norwegian cycling and Træen has a 2nd place overall from this race.

The most famous 'climbing' race in Norway - Sundvolden GP, features an uphill finish which is actually too short to get the true endurance climbers going which is why mountain monkey Carl Fredrik Hagen kept loosing the race to some Danish guy.
#lotto Hagen came out of "nowhere" in similar fashion last year when he dropped Alaphilippe on the final climb in the last stage of Tour de Romandie, and later finished in 10th GC in the Vuelta. So when yet another Norwegian pops out of a very determined team effort to develop Norwegian climbers - which last year also landed the Tour de L'Avenir, I am sorry *dk , it is disappointing your cycling journalists can do no better than say it is totally out of the blue, because there is a systematic development behind this - even if the individual rider here hasn't been very visible before. It will probably happen again, as Træen is not the only rider in #unox development pipeline with climbing abilities.

I had to get this little hint of bitterness out of the sweet success cake from Colombia, but already this week #unox is gearing up a different squad for a more important race for them: the Algarve. It will be live on 2 TV channels here, that has in the last few years only happened for the Tour and the Vuelta,  the Ronde van Vlaanderen , the Paris-Roubaix and the Liege-Bastogne-Liege - so the #unox team finally seems to lift media attention to cycling again, it has been on a steady decline since the Bergen worlds in 2017.   

From a podcast featuring an interview with Ass. Sports Director Stig Kristiansen I understand that different racers have different objectives, but the squad has an overall intention of riding to get noticed:
https://twitter.com/UnoXteam/status/1229290920878780417
  • Daniel Hoelgaard to participate in the sprint finishes. He will be supported by Erik Nordsæter Resell and Anders Skaarseth.
  • Andreas Leknessund will target the ITT stage.
  • Markus Hoelgaard and Torjus Sleen:  the hilly stages.
  • Kristian Kulset is the full time designated helper.
The Algarve is a race that will be raced somewhat harder than Colombia but this is also the A-squad of #unox.
Or did Træen just flip the tables there?
Can't wait to see how this unfolds!

 
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  • « Last Edit: January 11, 2022, 21:09 by t-72, Reason: contract extension »

    Joelsim

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    Looking forward to seeing Leknessund, and Larsen once he’s racing again.
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  • Drummer Boy

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    there's a wave of suspicion and more or less doping accusations thrown at Træen, especially from Danish journalists

    I must've missed the memo on this one, and a brief search in The Darkside didn't yield anything. :slow
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  • Leadbelly

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    Dare Bikes are now officially Uno-X's devo team.



    They can't swap riders around like I-SUN are doing with their own version. That's restricted to WT teams and their feeder CT teams. Hopefully we'll see a couple with stagiaire roles later in the season. Brynsrud for example.

    https://firstcycling.com/team.php?l=19192

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    They can't swap riders around like I-SUN are doing with their own version. That's restricted to WT teams and their feeder CT teams.

    are you sure about that?



    for the club riders there may be other limiting factors though, ADAMS and so on
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    LukasCPH

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    are you sure about that?
    Yeah, ProTeams can do the swapping too. Nothing else would make sense.[1]

    for the club riders there may be other limiting factors though, ADAMS and so on
    They can bring them in for .1 and .2 races without ADAMS etc., right? And, knowing the team, they may have the #daredevo riders inserted into ADAMS on their own cost just in case one or several develop well.
     1. But then, this is cycling, so you never know ...
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    Yeah, ProTeams can do the swapping too. Nothing else would make sense.

    seems like there are some more restrictions though, as this UCI document says only "Teams having an asterisk * benefit from the participation rules" - and only those World Tour devo teams on continental level do have one

    https://www.uci.org/docs/default-source/rules-and-regulations/part-ii-road/teams-participation.pdf
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  • LukasCPH

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    seems like there are some more restrictions though, as this UCI document says only "Teams having an asterisk * benefit from the participation rules" - and only those World Tour devo teams on continental level do have one

    https://www.uci.org/docs/default-source/rules-and-regulations/part-ii-road/teams-participation.pdf
    :slow
    I think I just give up and welcome our new (old) Aigle overlords who decide everything in their infinite wisdom.

    :S
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  • Joelsim

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    I'd vote for you as ruleskeeper and maker Lukas.
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  • Leadbelly

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    https://www.unoxteam.no/post/_dbdt

    Quote
    In September 2018 we launched DARE Bikes Development Team. The project, led by Max Emil Kørner, was dedicated to the development of the next generation of Norwegian climbers.

    For 2021 we have decided to convert DARE Bikes Development Team to a UCI Continental Team owned and operated by Uno-X:

    • Development team with a race program not in conflict with Uno-X

    • 10+ U23 riders from Norway and Denmark

    • One race program

    • Minimum scholarships 

    • Structural overlap with Uno-X in regards to equipment, training and racing.
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  • t-72

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    Not sure where to stick this, as it isn't really a race - but a few Norwegian riders have been/are  attempting to set new Norwgian national records for time trial distances. I think this game basically works like: (former #joker) Reidar Borgersen defined the road that is best for this, and they go back to beat his time.  #unox Andreas Leknessund (national champion) and #coop Iver Knotten should be known to those that follow the somewhat obscure Norwgian Conti and U23 scene, I think by now I may have succeeded to add all of you on that list?  :cool

    #joker Søren Wærenskjold is less well known but his junior years 2018 and 2017 have plenty of good results also internationally. I won't hold the 2020 Tour of Rhodes against him either, but that is a "Mallorca"-like season starter race for the lower ranked teams, and not a race where the competition is strong.

    Over 30 km - win for Wæresnkjold, cutting the old record (belonging to Knotten) by .... a minute and a half, to 34 mins 01 second with Leknessund at 34 mins and 08 seconds. Even Knotten, not on his best day, was faster than the old record.

    Apparently they will also do 10km (Kristoffer Skjerping holds the record) and 50 km (Reidar Borgersen current best) on the same  road.

    For #joker this is great. Beating national champion #unox #champno Leknessund is a significant result as Leknessund seems to have been in very good shape lately (perhaps a pre-programmed unstoppable peak form that was no real use due to corona?) Wærenskjold is the best of the Norwegian youngsters on a cross bike (Benelux people don't need to read this, he is faar from a Wout van Aert) and his potential is perhaps highest in classics races on rough surfaces.
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  • LukasCPH

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    Over 30 km - win for Wæresnkjold, cutting the old record (belonging to Knotten) by .... a minute and a half, to 34 mins 01 second with Leknessund at 34 mins and 08 seconds. Even Knotten, not on his best day, was faster than the old record.
    That is a very good result for SW, beating the two TT 'experts' like that. I knew him from some promising one-day results - this shows he has a serious engine and, as you say, could become a classics contender. :cool
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  • Joelsim

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    Wæresnkjold

    No doubt Rob Hatch will be able to pronounce this. Kirby won’t.
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  • t-72

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    Right, that´s so difficult I misspelled it :fp and made sure it cannot be pronounced at all.

     Wærenskjold!

    much better, Joel?
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  • t-72

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    Today Leknessund failed to take the 10 kilometer record. Karma strikes at #unox as this then still belongs to Kristoffer Skjerping, who was sacked from the team after winning the Gylne Gutuer last year. Leknessund seems to be coming off his peak form, riding below his assumed potential.

    The big news and the big big sports deal in Norway this year is new signing for #unox: Johannes Høsflot Klæbo. Apparently he won´t do much bike racing, but needs more cycling in his training.
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  • t-72

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    Former cross-country ski olympic champion, world champion and drunk driver Petter Northug had a company called Northug that supplied sunglasses to team UnoX and it was one of their sponsors, although it is not at all a given there was a lot of money involved.

    Yesterday, the former drunk driver was caught in a speed trap at 168 /km/h in the 110 km/h zone. That road would be off limits to cyclists anyway, so not a direct danger in that sense, but what was worse, he was apparently high on cocaine at the time. Later the police also found minor quantitites of cocaine at Northug's home.

    Team Uno-x #unox have terminated their contract with the Northug sunglasses company with immediate effect. They will probably find some other sunglasses at a shop where they are racing, but if Northug the company had an economic stake in the Klæbo deal - not unlikely - this could also have a serious impact on their budget. 

    In Uno-x the cycling team is an integrated part of the mother company and the management backs the decision to drop Northug.

    Northug is quite fast becoming his generation's equivalent of Matti Nykänen - a king skier but a failed playboy lifestyle once out of the arena. This is (as indicated) the second time Northug is involved in serious episodes involving driving too fast while intoxicated.

    I only wish #unox team Uno-X had pointed out more clearly in their press release that as a cycling team, they depend on driver's safe behavior to stay alive, and they cannot be associated with Northug that is now clearly (by a mile or maybe several miles, there's nothing else in the papers today) the most well known reckless driver not able to keep drugs and traffic apart here in Norway. It is the kind of behavior that kills cyclists.  (Having said that, cell phone use while driving is probably causing more accidents and fatalities than cocaine.)
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  • « Last Edit: August 17, 2020, 21:40 by t-72 »


    t-72

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    This post doesn't belong here....

    (they are starting a women's team too - targeting the 2022 season.)

    https://twitter.com/UnoXteam/status/1306926600274014208

    Quote
    Today we announce that Uno-X Pro Cycling Team aim to be a part of the UCI Women’s World Tour for 2022. Riders will primarily come from Norway and Denmark, but we might search even broader to complete our roster.

    It will be a young team of 10-12 riders developed by our well-known philosophy where long-term performance is more important than short-term results.

    We will maintain our high level of dedicated resources and equipment. Of course, wage levels, pension and insurances will be equal. 
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  • Drummer Boy

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    This post doesn't belong here....
    Neither does this one.  :P
    But when I first glanced at the Latest Activity Thread, I thought there was a post in a thread called:the Norwegian Protein thread, which of course had me intrigued.
    :slow

    As it turns out...



     :D






    As you were... :-x
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  • « Last Edit: September 21, 2020, 14:56 by Drummer Boy »

    LukasCPH

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    This post doesn't belong here....

    (they are starting a women's team too - targeting the 2022 season.)
    Since the thread title is "all things Uno-X", I would argue that this very much belongs here.

    It's great news, and I am confident they will put a good structure together. Everything around the men's team is very professional, yet grown at an organic pace ... the women's team will be a bit different in that it is planned to start at the highest level - but by 2022, they will have five years of experience on the men's side to draw on.

    As for possible riders ...
    *dk Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig just signed an extension with #fdj until (& including) 2022, so she won't be one of the 'starting riders'. *no Katrine Aalerud, on the other hand, is with #mov only until 2021 and would be free after that.
    *no Susanne Andersen is nearing the end of her contract with #sun already - if she signs an extension that is only for one year, that will be a big indicator she's going to wear #unox after that. The same is true for *dk Pernille Mathiesen.
    *dk Amalie Dideriksen has been with #boels her entire career and may well want to continue there. On the other hand, maybe she also wants more opportunities to race for the win herself than she currently gets.
    *dk Emma Norsgaard is contracted to #mov until 2022; *no Stine Borgli is with #fdj until 2022.
    *dk Julie Leth is currently on a one-year deal with #wnt, same for *no Emilie Moberg with #drops. Both of them would make excellent additions.
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  • t-72

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    Expanding the scope for this thread to include also 2021 - here are the races on the list for the Uno-X team #unox  this year. The list only includes confirmed participations, but I guess it isn't to likely they'll do the Giro this year. However, they will do the TotA  :cool , a foot in the door for them and one that fits their current squad better. They have good climbers and classics riders and now also sprinters, but they seem to be without obvious GC-rider candidates this year. I think they should ride for stage wins in the higher ranked races, but we'll see what they have in mind.

    Teh big news for today is their first World Tour race participation was announced, E3 Harel...eh Saxo Bank Classic!
    (Danish sponsored race, half-danish team!)

    Date fromDaysRankRace
    28.02.202111.ProKurne-Brussel-Kurne
    02.03.202111.1Le Samyn
    03.03.202110Trofej Umag
    07.03.202111.1Grote Pijs Jean-Pierre Monseré
    07.03.202110Grand Prix de la Ville de Lillers Souvenir Bruno Comini
    11.03.202140Istarsko Prolje?e
    17.03.202111.ProDonilith Nokere Koerse
    19.03.202111.ProBredene Koksijde Classic
    26.03.202111.UWTE3 Saxo Bank Classic
    28.03.202111.1Cholet – Pays de la Loire
    02.04.202111.1La route Adélie de Vitré
    03.04.202111.1Volta Limburg Classic
    04.04.202111.1La Roue Tourangelle Centre de Val de Loire – Trophée Hamonie Mutuelle
    07.04.202111.ProScheldeprijs
    11.04.202182.ProPresidential Cycling Tour of Turkey
    13.04.202111.1Paris-Camembert
    19.04.202152.ProTour of the Alps
    25.04.20211Paris-Mantes Cycliste
    25.04.20217Le Tour de Bretagne Cycliste
    09.05.20211Fléche Ardennaise
    12.05.202152.1Tour de Hongrie
    14.05.20213Tour d’Eure-et-Loir
    16.05.202111.ProTro-Bro Léon
    19.05.202162.ProTour of Norway
    24.05.202121.1Mercan’Tour Classic Alpes-Maritimes
    27.05.202142.ProLes Boucles de la Mayenne
    29.05.20211GP Herning
    30.05.20211Fyn Rundt
    03.06.20214Course de la Paix Grand Prix Jeseníki
    04.06.20213Tour of Malopolska
    06.06.202111.1Rund um Köln
    09.06.202162.ProTour of Slovenia
    09.06.202152.ProZLM Tour
    21.07.20215Tour d’Alsace
    25.07.20211Grand Prix Cerami
    05.08.202142.ProArctic Race of Norway
    10.08.202152.ProPostNord Danmark Rundt
    19.08.20214Czech Tour
    22.08.202111.1Schaal Sels Merksem/Johan Museeuw Classic
    24.08.202142.1Tour Poitou-Charentes et Nouvelle Aquitaine
    03.09.20214A Travers les Hauts de France
    12.09.202111.1Antwerp Port Epic/Sels Trophy
    14.09.202152.1Okolo Slovenska/Tour de Slovaquie
    14.09.20215Tour de Luxembourg
    26.09.202111.1Paris-Chauny
    28.09.202162.1CRO race
    03.10.202111.1La DH Famenne Ardenne Classic
    07.10.202142.1Greek Monuments Tour
    10.10.202111.1Memorial Rik van Steenbergen/Kempen Classic




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  • t-72

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    While I am at it, the complete list of riders for this year is announced as:


    NasjonNavnAlder
    *noJonas Abrahamsen25
    *noIdar Andersen21
    *noErlend Blikra24
    *noKristoffer Halvorsen24
    *dkJacob Hindsgaul Madsen20
    *noDaniel Hoelgaard27
    *noMarkus Hoelgaard26
    *dkMorten Hulgaard22
    *noJonas Iversby Hvideberg22
    *noJulius Johansen21
    *noKristian Kulset25
    *noSindre Kulset22
    *dkNiklas Larsen23
    *dkJohan Price-Pejtersen21
    *noErik Resell24
    *dkFrederik Rodenberg23
    *noLars Saugstad23
    *noAnders Skaarseth25
    *noIver Skaarseth22
    *noTorjus Sleen23
    *noRasmus Tiller24
    *noTorstein Træen25
    *noMartin Urianstad22
    *noSøren Wærenskjold20
    *noSyver Wærsted24

    combining the race list and the rider's list I speculate they will have one team of climbers (with Træen and Sleen, plus one sprinter?)  in the Adriatic region and one team of classics riders in the Belgium/NW Europe area (with 2x Hoelgaard, Abrahamsen, and the Danish Dynamos, if available and Hvideberg, maybe?) for March and April, plus one U-23 centered squad doing whatever they can....

    First up is Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne this weekend, last year they participated, did a good race but didn't get any surprising results with Hvideberg at 31st. I seem to remember that Markus Hoelgaard was involved in a crash, but the results lists Daniel Hoelgaard as DNF...  Any improvement over this is definetly welcome!
    Kristoffer Halvorsen could be their wild card for improvement, last year he finished 11th (with #ef team). However, that was his previous race and he has had motivational problems when not racing. Writing this while listening to a norwegian cycling podcast and none of the participants will give Halvorsen a chance to repeat the result
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  • t-72

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    OK, now I need to start planning for renaming this thread, but I still have some time before they become a world Tour team.

    Before we go bananas on the cycling consequences, there´s a second announcement included here about a shift in Uno-x´ core business. They used to sell liquid hydrocarbon fuels for automobiles in the parking lots of one of Norway´s 3 major grocery store chains. A brilliant idea for old times, if you have seen all the men waiting in the car while the wife takes care of the shopping.

    However, times are changing, and I personally thought the strong tie to hydrocarbon fuel for cars was the weak point in Unox´ plans for the future, also as a cycling team. New cars in Norway are now mostly electric, across alll categories relevant for the grocery store parking lot. The future for pure diesel and gasoline retailers seems short and not very profitable.

    Uno-x had a very interesting attempt at introducing hydrogen as a fuel for cars in Norway, but after an explosion on one of their sites Hydrogen never came back - not on the market and not in the team name. Norway is perhaps better known as an oil-producing country, but did you know that the country itself, including some of the larger oil fields(!) run almost entirely on electric power from the grid,  produced primarily using hydropower and now also some wind power? Batteries and electric power seems to be the future for vehicles here in Norway, and considering the availability of hydropower here, it is really strange that hydrocarbon fuels were prefered for so long.

    Now they will let men charge their car while the wife goes shopping. This takes more time than refueling with hydrocarbons. As a consequence it will allow for more time for shopping, and the grocery stores? They happen to be owned by the same group that as Uno-x. The future is so bright, they must wear shades down at the headquarters. Consequences for the family budgets and divorce frequency in Norway have not been evaluated, but it appears this cycling team may have financial roots intact, and can grow into the future.

    If they continue cycling the way they have done this year, I will be somewhere along the post-corona roadside screaming my lungs out. Go #unox Uno-X Mobility!

    Women´s World Tour hopefully from 2022, men´s World tour from 2023.

    https://twitter.com/vegarkulset/status/1403222719563501568



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  • t-72

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    LukasCPH

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    Women´s World Tour hopefully from 2022, men´s World tour from 2023.
    Very exciting news. But I just had a thought: Is there room for #unox to go WT? There are currently 19 WT teams, and the UCI wants to downsize that to 18 - and eventually 15.

    Unless of course they gamble on one or several of those teams to fold between now and 2023.
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  • Leadbelly

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    The qualification method for the WT in 2023 is here. After my latest update, the 18th team (ie. the last qualifying team for WT) was Lotto and they had a cumulative score of 5439. Uno-X's current tally is 2543.29.

    Even if they signed Kristoff and he turned back the clock, I just don't any way they'll manage to score enough points in the next 18 months. Their only realistic opportunity imo is to buy a licence in the style of ICA or Wanty.
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  • LukasCPH

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    It's 1 July - the first day when (prospective) WWT teams are allowed to publish their signings for the 2022 season.

    And this team's 2022 roster starts off with a young Finnish talent:
    *fi Anniina Ahtosalo --> #uxt

    https://twitter.com/UnoXteam/status/1410478108025688070


    Well-connected Jarle Fredagsvik names four Norwegians who will also join the team (not confirmed yet):
    https://www.betsson.com/no/blogg/annen-sport/sykling-uno-xs-susanne-andersen-fronter-storsatsing/

    *no Susanne Andersen #dsmw --> #uxt (unconfirmed)
    *no Mie Bjørndal Ottestad #andyschleck --> #uxt (unconfirmed)
    *no Anne Dorthe Ysland #coophitec --> #uxt (unconfirmed)
    *no Amalie Lutro #coophitec --> #uxt (unconfirmed)


    And, well, several non-Scandinavian riders have quote-tweeted the team's announcement (from late 2020) of building a women's team managed by Lars Bak in recent hours. Lizzy Banks and Chloe Hosking have been retweeted by the team ... make of that what you want: :shh :shh
    https://twitter.com/ElizzyBanks/status/1410201631354982408
    https://twitter.com/chloe_hosking/status/1410287998034456584
    https://twitter.com/CordonRagot/status/1410497092762705923
  • ReplyReply

  • LukasCPH

    • Multiple World Champion
    • *
    • Country: de
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    • Awards: Staff of the year 2016Staff of the year 2015Velorooms Tour de France BINGO champion 2014National Championships Predictions Game Winner 2014Velorooms Monday Quiz ChampionPoster of the Year 2013
    I'm adding another rider to the #uxt rumour mill, based on nothing more than my intuition:
    *dk #ceratizit Julie Leth

    Banks would get a trusted lieutenant she already knows (from 2019 at Bigla and this season at Ceratizit), and the whole team would get an excellent road captain with lots of experience. In fact, no matter if Banks is going to Norway or not, Leth would make a lot of sense, as a Danish rider and as a road captain.
  • ReplyReply

  • LukasCPH

    • Multiple World Champion
    • *
    • Country: de
    • Posts: 15931
    • Liked: 7941
      • lukascph.media
    • Awards: Staff of the year 2016Staff of the year 2015Velorooms Tour de France BINGO champion 2014National Championships Predictions Game Winner 2014Velorooms Monday Quiz ChampionPoster of the Year 2013
    Another intuition-based rumour:
    *no #drops Emilie Moberg --> #uxt

    This one makes even more sense than Leth. She was with *no Hitec Products for many years, then moved to *dk Virtu Cycling - and to Drops only when the latter folded. Returning to a Norwegian team when there is one at the WWT level is the logical conclusion.
  • ReplyReply

  • LukasCPH

    • Multiple World Champion
    • *
    • Country: de
    • Posts: 15931
    • Liked: 7941
      • lukascph.media
    • Awards: Staff of the year 2016Staff of the year 2015Velorooms Tour de France BINGO champion 2014National Championships Predictions Game Winner 2014Velorooms Monday Quiz ChampionPoster of the Year 2013

     



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