Australian Rohan Dennis Wins the Overall Title of the Inaugural Tour Of Alberta

Australian Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp captured the inaugural Tour of Alberta overall title today in front of massive crowds in downtown Calgary, finishing the six-day stage race with an aggregate time of 17 hours, 45 minutes and 40 seconds.  American Brent Bookwalter of BMC Racing finished second overall and Italian Damiano Caruso of Cannondale Pro Cycling rounded out the podium.

Sunday’s final stage took the elite professional field of 115 cyclists from Okotoks into the centre city of Calgary, Alberta’s largest city. The 130-kilometre course was filled with cycling fans; tens of thousands spectators lined up ten deep along the 4-kilometre circuit in downtown Calgary for the final stage. Slovakia’s Peter Sagan, who won the Prologue in Edmonton last Tuesday and the following day’s stage, outsprinted the field to capture the final stage.

“I came into this race in pretty good form,” said the 23-year-old Dennis. “I really didn’t know how it would play out throughout the week. I guess it played out well. So, I’m a little surprised. It’s the biggest win of my pro career.”

It was Dennis’ first major stage race victory. He took the overall lead on Stage 3 Friday into Drumheller. He held off the top racers on the hilly stage to Black Diamond and maintained his lead all the way into Calgary Sunday.

As expected, Sagan was a big threat the entire race and entered the race as overall favorite until he lost the race lead in the cross winds of rural Alberta. Sagan, who has won more races than anyone on the international professional circuit this year, won three stages. Late last month, he had won four stages at the USA Pro Challenge.

“This was a very good race for its first year. The crowds were very big and enthusiastic,” Sagan said, adding with a smile: “I never knew their were so many Slovaks in Canada.”

The 900-kilometre race was greeted with large flag-waving crowds throughout the six days in Alberta. The race began in the centre city of Edmonton on Tuesday and crowds continued to grow during the entire route.

Outside the three stage wins by the world’s No. 2-ranked Sagan, the other stages were won by Swissman Sylvan Dillier of BMC Racing, Dennis, and 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans.

“This was a very nice race,” said Evans. “The weather was great. The crowds were large and enthusiastic. The racing was actually quite good. For a first year event, it was incredibly well organized. We’ll see, but, sure, I’d like to come back next year.”

Two years in the making, the province of Alberta celebrated cycling throughout the week from roadside picnics to finish line gatherings, making Canada’s highest-ranked stage race look to the future with great hope.

“It was a spectacular week of racing,” said the Tour of Alberta chairman Brian Jolly. “There were many who doubted we could do an event of this caliber in the province of Alberta. With the support of all our partners, we not only met, but far exceeded all expectations. We now will review and work toward continuing the event for future years.

The final race jerseys: Province of Alberta Leader Jersey and Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider, Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp; SUBWAY® Sprint Points Jersey, Peter Sagan of Cannondale Pro Cycling; Budweiser Crown King of the Mountains Jersey, Tom Jelte Slagter of Belkin Pro Cycling; Best Canadian Rider, Ryan Anderson of Optum presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies; and Most Aggressive Rider, Adam Farabaugh of Equipe Garneau-Quebecor.

 

Stage 5 Results:  Okotoks to Calgary – 129.4 km road race
1. Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia, 2 hours, 42 minutes, 20 seconds
2. Luka Mezgec (Team Argos-Shimano), Slovenia, s.t.
3. Robert Forster (United Healthcare Pro Cycling Team), Germany, s.t.
4. Luke Keough (United Healthcare Pro Cycling Team), United States, s.t.
5. Nicholai Brochner (Bissell Pro Cycling), Denmark, s.t.
6. Charles Huff (Jelly Belly P/B Kenda), United States, s.t.
7. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, s.t.
8. Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada, s.t.
9. Tomas Vaitkus (Orica GreenEDGE), Lithuania, s.t.
10. Pierrick Naud (Equipe Garneau-Quebecor), Canada, s.t.

Final Overall Standings (after Stage 5)
1. Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia, 17 hours, 48 minutes, 40 seconds
2. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, 17 hours, 48 minutes, 58 seconds
3. Damiano Caruso (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Italy, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 10 seconds
4. Patrick Gretsch (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 11 seconds
5. Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 21 seconds
6. Robert Sweeting (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) United States, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 34 seconds
7. Francisco Mancebo (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) Spain, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 35 seconds
8. Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 36 seconds
9. Matthias Friedemann (Champion System Pro Cycling Team), Germany, 17 hours, 49 minutes, 59 seconds
10. Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 17 hours, 50 minutes, 02 seconds

 

Yellow Jersey (Province of Alberta Leader Jersey)
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Green Jersey (Subway® Sprint Points Jersey)
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Polka Dot Jersey (Budweiser Crown King of the Mountains Jersey)
Tom Jelte Slagter (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands

White Jersey (Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider)
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Maple Leaf (Best Canadian Rider)
Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada

Blue Jersey (Most Aggressive Rider)
Adam Farabaugh (Equipe Garneau-Quebecor), United States

More information on the Tour of Alberta can be found at www.tourofalberta.ca. Follow the Tour of Alberta on Twitter @TourofAlberta or on Facebook at TourofAlberta.

About the Tour of Alberta The Tour of Alberta: Canada’s Pro-Cycling Festival is a six-day stage race scheduled to be held September 3 to 8, 2013.  The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, awarded the inaugural Tour of Alberta with a 2.1 sanctioning in September 2012, making it one of the highest level pro cycling events in Canada, and one of the highest level events in North America. An annual event beginning in 2013, the event will be broadcast live daily in Canada on Sportsnet, and broadcast internationally on various networks, as it is expected that the event will host riders from over 20 countries around the world.

–  30 –

For more information, please contact:
Val Mellesmoen
Tour of Alberta
Alberta Peloton Association/Tour of Alberta      
1-780-982-7277

valm@albertapeloton.ca

Steven Brunner
Press Director
Tour of Alberta
1-719-322-7022
sgbrunner@KOM-sports.com

 

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Former Tour de France Winner Cadel Evans Wins Stage 4 of Tour of Alberta

BLACK DIAMOND, Alberta (7 September 2013) — BMC Racing’s Cadel Evans, the 2011 Tour de France champion and 2009 World Champion, outsprinted four breakaway riders to win Stage 4 of the inaugural six-day Tour of Alberta Saturday.

Evans outsprinted Dutchmen Simon Geschke of Team Argos-Shimano and Tom Jelte Slagter of Belkin Pro Cycling in the closing meters to claim his first victory on the international pro circuit in over a year.

Evans, usually reserved as a contender for the overall title for stage races, lost 17 minutes during Friday’s stage and fell out of overall contention, which left him hunting for a stage win.

“My primary focus was to come here to the Tour of Alberta and prepare for the upcoming Pro Tour events and World Championships,” said Evans. “But, in the back of my mind, if I could win a stage, that would be a good goal. As someone who usually rides for the general classification, I don’t get many chances to get in a breakaway and go for a stage win. So, this is nice.”

Meanwhile, Australian Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp, who took over the race lead into Drumheller Friday, continues to lead the race despite finishing more than 9 minutes back from today’s leaders.

“I’m confident in my team for tomorrow’s final stage,” said Dennis, who could win his first major professional stage race and has looked very good all week. “I haven’t really thought to far ahead. We had to take care of today. We’ll have to see what happens Sunday.”

Slagter picked up the Budweiser Crown KOM Jersey while Cannondale Pro Cycling’s Peter Sagan, the winner of the first two stages, remained in the Subway® Sprint Points Jersey. Canadian National Team member Antoine Duchesne earned the Most Aggressive Jersey for the day. Ryan Anderson with Optum presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies retained the Best Canadian Jersey.

The day was marked with dark, low-lying clouds through the foothills of the southwest part of the Province of Alberta.  The original stage was to route from Black Diamond to Canmore, near Banff, in the Rocky Mountains, but a major flood last June washed away eight bridges that the race was to traverse, making it impossible to stage what was to be one of the most scenic and definitely most challenging stages of the first Tour of Alberta.

Despite the gloomy weather, large crowds turned out to the race, which Dennis said rivaled anything he’d seen in major races in Europe and the United States.

“The crowds, especially for the rain, really came out and supported us today,” Dennis said. “Sure, it’s always a bit more motivating when you’re feeling the energy of the crowd. The one climb was particularly good.”

The crowds on a remote climb on Alberta highway 274 saw the field of riders go up twice, were loud and vocal.

With a relatively flat course for Sunday’s final stage from Okotoks to Calgary, Alberta’s largest city and home to the 1988 Winter Olympic Games, the race will finish with four circuits in centre city, where very large crowds are expected to meet the athletes from more than 25 countries to conclude the first edition of the Tour of Alberta.

Stage 4 – Black Diamond to Black Diamond (Road Race) – 169.6 km

Stage 4 Results
1. Cadel Evans (BMC Racing Team), Australia, 3 hours, 57 minutes, 18 seconds
2. Simon Geschke (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, s.t.
3. Tom Jelte Slagter (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, s.t.
4. Ben Day (United Healthcare Pro Cycling Team), Australia, s.t.
5. Antoine Duchesne (Canadian National Team), Canada, s.t.
6. Scott Zwizanski (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), United States, 3 hours, 59 minutes, 07 seconds
7. Nic Hamilton (Jelly Belly P/B Kenda), Canada, s.t.
8. Clay Murfet (Team Smartstop P/B Mountain Khakis), Australia, s.t.
9. Ryan Roth (Champion System Pro Cycling Team), Canada, s.t.
10. Luke Keough (United Healthcare Pro Cycling Team), United States, 4 hours, 07 minutes, 02 seconds

 

Overall Standings (after Stage 4)
1. Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia, 15 hours, 06 minutes, 20 seconds
2. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, 15 hours, 06 minutes, 38 seconds
3. Damiano Caruso (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Italy, 15 hours, 06 minutes, 50 seconds
4. Patrick Gretsch (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, 15 hours, 06 minutes, 51 seconds
5. Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 15 hours, 06 minutes, 54 seconds
6. Robert Sweeting (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) United States, 15 hours, 07 minutes, 14 seconds
7. Francisco Mancebo (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) Spain, 15 hours, 07 minutes, 15 seconds
8. Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada, 15 hours, 07 minutes, 16 seconds
9. Matthias Friedemann (Champion System Pro Cycling Team), Germany, 15 hours, 07 minutes, 32 seconds
10. Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 15 hours, 07 minutes, 35 seconds

 

Yellow Jersey (Province of Alberta Leader)
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Green Jersey (Subway® Sprint Points Leader)
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Polka Dot Jersey (Budweiser Crown King of the Mountains)
Tom Jelte Slagter (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands

White Jersey (Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider)
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Maple Leaf (Best Canadian Rider)
Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada

Blue Jersey (Most Aggressive Rider)
Antoine Duchesne (Canadian National Team), Canada

 

More information on the Tour of Alberta can be found at www.tourofalberta.ca. Follow the Tour of Alberta on Twitter @TourofAlberta or on Facebook at TourofAlberta.

About the Tour of Alberta The Tour of Alberta: Canada’s Pro-Cycling Festival is a six-day stage race scheduled to be held September 3 to 8, 2013.  The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, awarded the inaugural Tour of Alberta with a 2.1 sanctioning in September 2012, making it one of the highest level pro cycling events in Canada, and one of the highest level events in North America. An annual event beginning in 2013, the event will be broadcast live daily in Canada on Sportsnet, and broadcast internationally on various networks, as it is expected that the event will host riders from over 20 countries around the world.

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Australia’s Rohan Dennis Wins Stage 3 of Tour of Alberta in Canada’s Dinosaur Capital of Drumheller

DRUMHELLER, Alberta (September 6, 2013) —- Australia’s Rohan Dennis won more than his first major professional race Friday in the inaugural Tour of Alberta, landing himself in the Province of Alberta Leader Jersey and the Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider Jersey (for competitor’s under 23 or younger), while taking home a 65-million-year-old fossil, compliments of the local organizing committee in Drumheller.

The 23-year-old Dennis, who rides for Team Garmin-Sharp, broke away with five other competitors and outsprinted them all in the final 50 metres to win the 169-kilometre race from Strathmore, east of Calgary, to the Canadian Badlands region into Drumheller. The race was contested at fast speeds and windy conditions.

Three-day leader Peter Sagan of Slovakia, and the Cannondale Pro Cycling team, lost more than 16 minutes, vaulting Dennis into the Leader Jersey, the first of his professional career.  For his winning effort, Dennis was awarded a vertebrae from a Hadrosaur, a dinosaur which roamed the area 65 million years ago. He said it was the “coolest prize” he had ever won. The gift came complete with customs’ clearing papers and a hard protective case.

“I am feeling very good,” said Dennis. “To tell you the truth, I was a little lucky today. I was at the right place when the attacks were taking place on this stretch of road, when the real breakaway (of the day) took place. I had the deck stacked against me with so many BMC riders. I had to ride sensible. This is my first big win, so, I’m very pleased.”

Dennis outsprinted American Brent Bookwalter of BMC Racing by a half-bike length. Dennis and Bookwalter, along with Cannondale Pro Cycling’s Damiano Caruso, Belkin Pro Cycling’s Robert Gesink, BMC Racing’s Steve Morabito, and Team Argos-Shimano’s Patrick Gretsch had broke away after the first KOM of the day outside of the first pass through Drumheller and dropped 12 other riders on a high plateau en route back to the finish.

“We really had the hammer down,” said Bookwalter. “We needed to whittle a pretty big group down to make it better chance to win the stage. Dennis just had a little bit more pop for the sprint. I knew he had some good sprinting legs based on some of the mid-race sprints the last few days. We’ll ride for tomorrow, the race isn’t finished yet.”

Dennis holds a slim 11 second margin over Bookwalter and 30-second lead over Italy’s Caruso, who moved into 3rd place overall. Germany’s Gretsch moved into 4th overall, 31 seconds back, while The Netherland’s Gesink moved into 5th overall, 34 seconds back. Gesink picked up the Budweiser Crown King of the Mountains Jersey for his efforts.

“That was a tough race today,” said Gesink, who then joked: “How about that? Gesink King of the Mountains in the Tour of Alberta with not so many mountains.”

Bookwalter added: “The old cliche is playing out in this race. It’s the riders that make the race, not the terrain. It’s been a pretty good race. Everyone’s going for it. Very aggressive racing and not so easy to control.”

Tomorrow’s Stage 4, which is a hilly route from Black Diamond/Foothills to Black Diamond/Foothills, is a modified circuitous course that replaced the big mountain stage from Black Diamond to Canmore originally planned after a major flood in June washed away three bridges on the road up to the Banff/Canmore region.

Strathemore to Drumheller / Alberta, Canada
Stage 3
A 169.8-km, road race

Stage 3 Standings
1. Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia, 3 hours, 55 minutes, 31 seconds
2. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, s.t.
3. Damiano Caruso (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Italy, s.t.
4. Patrick Gretsch (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, s.t.
5. Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, s.t.
6. Steve Morabito (BMC Racing Team), Switzerland, s.t.
7. Aidis Kroupis (Orica GreenEDGE), Lithuania, 3 hours, 55 minutes, 40 seconds
8. Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada, s.t.
9. Marcus Burghardt (BMC Racing Team), Germany, s.t.
10. Jakub Novak (BMC Racing Team), Czechoslovakia, s.t.

Overall Standings (after Stage 3)
1. Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia, 10 hours, 59 minutes, 18 seconds
2. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, 10 hours, 59 minutes, 36 seconds
3. Damiano Caruso (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Italy, 10 hours, 59 minutes, 48 seconds
4. Patrick Gretsch (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, 10 hours, 59 minutes, 49 seconds
5. Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 10 hours, 59 minutes, 52 seconds
6. Robert Sweeting (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) United States, 11 hours, 00 minutes, 12 second
7. Francisco Mancebo Perez (5-Hour Energy P/B Kenda Racing Team) Spain, 11 hours, 00 minutes, 13 seconds
8. Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada, 11 hours, 00 minutes, 14 seconds
9. Matthias Friedemann (Champion System Pro Cycling Team), Germany, 11 hours, 00 minutes, 30 seconds
10. Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 11 hours, 00 minutes, 33 seconds

Province of Alberta Race Leader Jersey
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Subway Sprint Points Leader Jersey
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Budweiser Crown King of the Mountain Jersey
Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands

Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider
Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia

Best Canadian
Ryan Anderson (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), Canada

Most Aggressive
Steve Morabito (BMC Racing Team), Switzerland

 

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Swissman Silvan Dillier Wins Stage 2

RED DEER, Alberta (5 September 2013) – In the most dramatic stage of this year’s Tour of Alberta, Swiss first-year professional Silvan Dillier of BMC Racing held off a charging pack that included race leader Peter Sagan to win Stage 2 into Red Deer Thursday.

“The job of my team was to control the race today,” said Sagan, admitting he can’t win every stage despite the fact he won the first two days of this year’s race. “It wasn’t as important to win the race, but to keep the leader’s jersey.”

The 23-year-old Swiss rider Dillier called it his biggest victory as a professional and proved that youth is dominating Canada’s biggest stage race.

Sagan, also 23, finished 3rd on the day while retaining his overall lead by 26 seconds over 23-year-old Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp. Tobias Ludvigsson, 24, of Team Argos-Shimano remained 28 seconds back while 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans was 36 seconds behind.

The 174-kilometre race which routed through rural Alberta and sprint lines in Wetaskiwin and Ponoka en route to Red Deer was very fast averaging 48.1 kph.

“The first 50 kilometres were something like 55 kph,” said Sagan, half-laughing at the ridiculous speeds. “Everyone was trying to breakaway. Everyone wants to win.”

Dillier and Jelly Belly p/b Kenda’s Serghei Tvetcov of Moldova eventually stayed clear for almost two hours building a lead of more than five minutes and rode into the three circuits in Red Deer in tandem with less than a two-minute lead.  The pack, led by Sagan, ensued with a strong chase but couldn’t catch Dillier and Tvetcov, who held off the charging pack over the final kilometres. Dillier eventually outsprinted Tvetcov for the victory.

For his effort, Tvetcov earned the race’s most aggressive rider award.

Meanwhile, Sagan retains three category jerseys, including the Province of Alberta Leader Jersey, Subway® Sprint Points jersey, and Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider jersey. Team Garmin-Sharp’s Ryder Hesjedal, the 2012 Giro d’Italia winner and Canada’s only 2012 Olympian in the road race at the London Games; maintains the lead in the Best Canadian Jersey competition.

Friday’s Stage 3 takes the cyclists from the rural Alberta town of Strathmore into Drumheller. The 170-kilometre course is hillier than the past two stages and may open up the race for the overall lead. Friday’s race heads in a northernly direction for the first time, racing through the Canadian Badlands into Drumheller for a sprint before racing back out of town into hilly country before routing back into Drumheller for the finish. Drumheller is known for its dinosaur fossil beds.

 

Stage 2 / Devon to Red Deer
A 174.8-km road race

Stage 2 Results
1. Silvan Dillier (BMC Racing Team), Switzerland, 3 hours, 32 minutes, 47 seconds
2. Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly P/B Kenda), Moldova, s.t.
3. Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia, 3 hours, 33 minutes, 3 seconds
4. Aidis Kroupis (Orica GreenEDGE), Lithuania, 3 hours, 33 minutes, 5 seconds
5. Luka Mezgec (Team Argos-Shimano), Slovenia, s.t.
6. Nicholai Brochner (Bissell Pro Cycling), Denmark, s.t.
7. Eric Young (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), United States, s.t.
8. Travis McCabe (Team Smartstop P/B Mountain Khakis), United States, s.t.
9. Dennis Van Winden (Belkin-Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, s.t.
10. Jeremy Vennell (Bissell Pro Cycling), New Zealand, s.t.

Overall Standings (after Stage 2)
1. Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia, 7 hours, 3 minutes, 34 seconds
2. Rohan Dennis (Team Garmin-Sharp), Australia, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 0 seconds
3. Tobias Ludvigsson (Team Argos-Shimano), Swedan, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 2 seconds
4. Cadel Evans (BMC Racing Team), Australia, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 10 seconds
5. Brent Bookwalter (BMC Racing Team), United States, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 11 seconds
6. Pieter Weening (Orica GreenEDGE), Netherlands, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 17 seconds
7. Patrick Gretsch (Team Argos-Shimano), Germany, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 18 seconds
8. Tom Zirbel (Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies), United States, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 20 seconds
9. Ryder Hesjedal (Team Garmin-Sharp), Canada, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 20 seconds
10. Robert Gesink (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands, 7 hours, 4 minutes, 21 seconds

Yellow Jersey (Alberta Race Leader)
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Green Jersey (Subway Sprint Leader)
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Polka Dot Jersey (Budweiser King of the Mountain)
Tom Jelte Slagter (Belkin Pro Cycling Team), Netherlands

White Jersey (Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider)
Peter Sagan (Cannondale Pro Cycling), Slovakia

Maple Leaf (Best Canadian)
Ryder Hesjedal (Team Garmin-Sharp), Canada

Blue Jersey (Most Aggressive)
Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly P/B Kenda), Moldova

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Peter Sagan Takes Second Stage in a Row

On Planet Sagan there are no other competitors only second-place finishers, as the Slovakian national champion who rides for Cannondale Pro Cycling proved Wednesday, as he won his second stage in a row in the inaugural Tour of Alberta. Stage 1 was a fast one as the racers averaged 46.9 kilometres on the windswept road of rural Alberta between Strathcona County and Camrose.

After four wins in the USA Pro Challenge a couple weeks ago in Colorado, it marks six wins in the last nine races for Sagan, and, 21 overall this year, more than any other professional cyclist.

The 23-year-old Sagan and his team lapped up a four-man breakaway on the closing circuits into Camrose and made the win look easy. So easy that he had time to take a victory salute that mimicked smoking a champion’s cigar. Was that an omen of things to come in Calgary?

“Today my team did a very good job because today was all day on the front,” Sagan said. “And, also from the start there were attacks and we put only four riders in the breakaway. Then we were always on the front for the pulling.”

Second-place finisher Eric Young of Optum presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies said racing against Sagan is a ‘dream come true’ but also a difficult proposition beating him.

The race out of Strathcona County was lined with big crowds, including sprint lines in Fort Saskatchewan and Ardrossan.  A breakaway of four riders, including the day’s Most Aggressive Rider Jeremy Powers of Jelly Belly presented by Kenda, gained almost three minutes off the main pack before being reeled in on the circuits. Powers said it seemed like their was a head wind the whole time.

“Everytime we made a turn, I thought it (the wind) would ease up but it didn’t,” said Powers, who finished 25th overall earlier this year in the cyclocross world championships.

Sagan added 10 seconds via time bonus on Australian Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp, who sits in 2nd place overall going into Thursday’s stage from Devon to Red Deer. Sweden’s Tobias Ludvigsson remains in third, now 24 seconds back. The 2011 Tour de France winner, Cadel Evans, is in 4th place overall at 30 seconds back.

Thursday’s stage will take the international field from Devon to Red Deer, the third largest city in Alberta. The race will be 175 km (108 miles) with sprint lines in Wetaskiwin and Ponoka. The race starts at 10:50 am in downtown Devon and is estimated to finish at 3:28 pm on 50 Street in central Red Deer.

Stage 1 Results – top 10 (Strathcona County to Camrose, 158 km, ave speed: 46.9 km)
1 Sagan, Peter (SVK) Cannondale Pro Cycling 3.22’17”
2 Young, Eric (USA) Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies 3.22’17”
3 Hofland, Moreno (NED) Belkin Pro Cycling Team 3.22’17”
4 Anderson, Ryan (CAN) Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies 3.22’17”
5 Mezgec, Luka (SLO) Team Argos-Shimano 3.22’17”
6 Bookwalter, Brent (USA) BMC Racing Team 3.22’17”
7 Wegemann, Fabian (GER) Team Garmin-Sharp 3.22’17”
8 Friedemann, Matthias (GER) Champion System Pro Cycling Team 3.22’17”
9 Ludvigsson, Tobias (SWE) Team Argos-Shimano 3.22’17”
10 Murphy, John (USA) United Healthcare Pro Cycling Team 3.22’17”

General Classification Results (after Stage 1)
1 Sagan, Peter (SVK) Cannondale Pro Cycling 3.30’35”
2 Dennis, Rohan (AUS) Team Garmin-Sharp +23”
3 Ludvigsson, Tobias (SWE) Team Argos-Shimano +24”
4 Evans, Cadel (AUS) BMC Racing Team +30”
5 Bookwalter, Brent (USA) BMC Racing Team +31
6 Weening, Pieter (NED) Orica GreenEDGE +39”
7 Gretsch, Patrick (GER) Team Argos-Shimano +st
8 Zirbel, Tom (USA) Optum P/B Kelly Benefit Strategies +40”
9 Hesjedal, Ryder (CAN) Team Garmin-Sharp +st
10 Gesink, Robert (NED) Belkin Pro Cycling Team +41”

Yellow Jersey (Alberta Race Leader)
Sagan, Peter (SVK) Cannondale Pro Cycling

Green Jersey (Subway Sprint Leader)
Sagan, Peter (SVK) Cannondale Pro Cycling

Polka Dot Jersey (Budweiser King of the Mountain)
Slagter, Tom Jelte (NED) Belkin Pro Cycling Team

White Jersey (Canadian Western Bank Best Young Rider)
Sagan, Peter (SVK) Cannondale Pro Cycling

Maple Leaf (Best Canadian)
Hesjedal, Ryder (CAN) Team Garmin-Sharp

Blue Jersey (Most Aggressive)
Powers, Jeremy (USA) Jelly Belly P/B Kenda

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Peter Sagan Wins Opening Stage of Inaugural Tour of Alberta

Edmonton, Alberta – Cannondale Pro Cycling’s Peter Sagan, has won more races than anyone on the world’s professional circuit, notching his 20th victory of the season by winning the Prologue time trial of the inaugural Tour of Alberta in downtown Edmonton, Tuesday night.

The 23-year-old Slovakian rider won the 7.3-kilometer prologue around the centre city of Edmonton by 13 seconds over Australian Rohan Dennis of Team Garmin-Sharp. Sweden’s Tobias Ludvigsson of Team Argos-Shimano placed third.

“I think this distance was good for me,” said Sagan, who won the past two sprint points jerseys at the Tour de France. “Maybe if it was longer, not so good. But I have been training and racing at high altitude in Colorado the past two weeks, so I think my fitness is good.”

Less than two weeks ago, Sagan had won four stages of the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado, considered by many to be the biggest bike race in the United States.  Dennis called Sagan a, “hard man to beat at the moment.”

The inaugural Tour of Alberta kicked off in front of massive crowds in the tens of thousands that welcomed Canada’s first major internationally-sanctioned stage race. The six-day race kicked off in Alberta’s capital city in the evening in front of a live national and international audience.

Riders from 27 countries took the start house in an event that organizers hope will be an annual affair for Canada’s second most western province.

The race continues with Stage 1, which includes a mostly flat stage from Strathcona County to the bike-friendly city of Camrose, south of Edmonton. The race will be 158 kilometres long with sprint points at Fort Saskatchewan and Ardrossan.

“The roads for sure will have wind, I think,” said Robert Gesink, who races for The Netherland-based Belkin Pro Cycling team. “I am used to winds in my home country of Holland, and they can do strange things to a bike race.”

Gesink referred to the rural Alberta countryside the cyclists will undertake in Wednesday’s stage, where winds sometime kick up in late summer in the province. The winds can sometimes cause splits in the pack of riders while racing, which can create time gaps.

With time bonuses for the first three finishers on each of the next five stages, and with Sagan already picked as the top sprinter in the race, it leaves people guessing on whether this could be a race where Sagan could lead from start to finish.

“He will be hard to beat for the overall for sure,” said Team Garmin-Sharp’s Ryder Hesjedal, the top Canadian racing in the Tour of Alberta and winner of the prestigious Giro d’Italia in 2012.  “He’s a quality bike rider and obviously on very good form. That’s a scary proposition.”

The big names didn’t disappoint with top finishes by 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans of BMC Racing, who finished 4th overall, 20 seconds behind; 2013 Tour of Poland winner Pieter Weening of team Orica GreenEDGE, 21 seconds behind; seven-time U.S. National Champion in the time trial David Zabriskie and Hesjedal both of Team Garmin-Sharp, finished 30 seconds back.

 

More information on the Tour of Alberta can be found at www.tourofalberta.ca. Follow the Tour of Alberta on Twitter @TourofAlberta or on Facebook at TourofAlberta.

About the Tour of Alberta The Tour of Alberta: Canada’s Pro-Cycling Festival is a six-day stage race scheduled to be held September 3 to 8, 2013.  The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, awarded the inaugural Tour of Alberta with a 2.1 sanctioning in September 2012, making it one of the highest level pro cycling events in Canada, and one of the highest level events in North America. An annual event beginning in 2013, the event will be broadcast live daily in Canada on Sportsnet, and broadcast internationally on various networks, as it is expected that the event will host riders from over 20 countries around the world.

 

Photo Credit: John Pierce / PhotoSport International uk usa asia

 

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Tour of Alberta Preview

The inaugural Tour of Alberta enters the realms of the professional cycling circuit with a star-studded field, as 2011 Tour de France winner Cadel Evans of BMC Racing team and the world’s No. 2-ranked rider Peter Sagan of Cannondale Pro Cycling and Canadian superstar and 2012 Tour of Italy champion Ryder Hesjedal of Team Garmin-Sharp headline the list of 120 cyclists competing for the overall title.

The race features six teams from the Tour de France and the top Pro Continental and Continental teams from the Americas.  The race will feature more than 20 Canadian cyclists.

The Tour of Alberta may hinge on the opening prologue, which is a challenging and technical 7.3 kilometer individual race against the clock that will seed the riders by best time. The time gaps on this stretch of pavement in the centre city of Alberta’s capital city of Edmonton could help determine the overall race winner.  This fact hasn’t been lost by the teams, of whom have chosen good short time trialists.

Among the early contenders for the yellow jersey, world champion on the track Jack Bobridge of Belkin Pro Cycling, current Canadian National Champion Zach Bell, Garmin-Sharp’s Rohan Dennis and seven-time U.S. National Champion in the time trial David Zabriskie, Brent Bookwalter of BMC Racing, Patrick Gretsch of Argos-Shimano, Cam Meyer of Orica GreenEDGE and current U.S. National Champion in the time trial Tom Zirbel of Optum presented by Kelly Benefits Strategies.

After the prologue, the spot light will turn to the sprinters. With Sagan, arguably the world’s best sprinter, in the race, it may be left for others to be vying for second place. Sagan enters the Tour of Alberta as the prohibitive overall race favorite because time bonuses will be provided at the end of stages. By winning multiple stages, Sagan could make up ground on the winner of the Prologue. Sagan recently won four stages in the USA Pro Challenge in Colorado, which was a mountainous race, showing he can climb also. That’s a scary proposition for other top sprinters in the race, including Canadian Ryan Anderson and Robert Forster of United Healthcare, U.S. National Champion Fred Rodriguez, a former stage winer at the Tour of Italy, Ken Hanson of Optump presented by Kelly Benefits, Bell, Bobridge.

The race is full of good roulers,  which are individuals whom are good on rolling terrain. Look for Peter Weening of Orica GreenEDGE and the recent winner of the Tour of Poland, former Tour de France stage winner Marcus Burghardt of BMC Racing, Steven Kruijswijk  and Tom Slagter of Argos Shimano to be active and in the hunt for stage wins if not the overall title.

While the Tour of Alberta’s big mountain stage was washed away with June’s flood, there are several good all around riders that can contend on any given day in the run up toward the title, including Hesjedal, Sagan, 5 Hour Energy presented by Kenda Racing team’s Francisco Mancebo, 2012 Tour of California overall winner Robert Gesink, 2012 USA Pro Challenge (Colorado) winner Christian Vande Velde and former Tour de France stage winner David Millar, both of Team Garmin-Sharp.

“It will no doubt be a race for the sprinters,” said Race Director Jim Birrell. “The prologue is very interesting and will play a big role in determining who will eventually win but will not be the only factor. With winds expected to play a factor in the opening two stages, and the hills on stages 3 and 4, it will be interesting to see how the top teams with contenders attempt to navigate and control the race. That may be the biggest unpredictability of this inaugural race.”

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2013 Tour of Alberta to be broadcast in over 162 countries and 168 million households around the world

Edmonton, Alberta Canada … Millions of cycling fans around the world will be able to watch the 2013 Tour of Alberta this September when 120 of the world’s top professional cyclists race the 900-kiometre route across the province, September 3 to 8, 2013.

Working with IMG Worldwide and host broadcaster Aquila Productions, the Tour of Alberta has secured agreement that will see the event televised in 162 countries with a total household reach of over 168 million people.

More than 50 million viewers in the U.S. will be able to watch the tour on Universal Sports as it feature live coverage of the Tour of Alberta as part of its “Bikenado” programming in September. In Europe, cycling fans in 51 countries will be able to watch the Tour on EUROSPORT, which will also broadcast the race to 47 countries in Asia on EUROSPORT Asia.

Fans down under will be able to watch Australian team Orica GreenEdge race against Aussie countryman Cadel Evans with BMC Racing Team on SBS Australia as the cyclists compete to be the historic first winner of the coveted Tour of Alberta golden Province of Alberta Leader’s Jersey.

“To say we are thrilled with the level in interest we have received in the event from broadcasters around the world would be an understatement,” said Duane Vienneau, Executive Director of the Tour of Alberta. “The numbers are a testament to the growing popularity of cycling, and we are very excited to be able to help showcase both the natural beauty and community spirit of the Alberta to millions of people as they tune into to watch some of the world’s top athletes compete in Canada’s first major stage race.”

International broadcasters will access the final two hours of live coverage of the race being produced for the Tour of Alberta by Aquila Productions of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. A one-hour highlights program of the Tour of Alberta will also be available and distributed following the event through IMG’s network to an estimated 350 countries.

“IMG is very pleased to be part of the 2013 Tour of Alberta Team and to be given the responsibility of maximizing the international television coverage of this inaugural race,” said Peter Sisam, Vice-President of IMG Media. “There is no doubt that people around the world will be excited not only to see the race but also the stunning beauty of the Alberta scenery.”

 

 

The Canadian broadcast partner for the Tour of Alberta, Sportsnet, will be airing the race live for two hours each day, along with daily one-hour highlights program to air in primetime each day of the race.

In addition to the Canadian broadcast coverage on Sportsnet, the Tour of Alberta will also be broadcast around the world through a number of international broadcasters as a live feed, and through a one-hour highlights program. General information on the international broadcasts networks and countries is available on the Tour of Alberta website at www.tourofalberta.ca

Specific air dates and times are available through the websites of the various broadcast networks.

About IMG IMG Worldwide is a global sports, fashion and media business, with nearly 3,500 employees operating in more than 30 countries around the globe. IMG’s areas of expertise are diverse and wide-ranging: IMG College; IMG Joint Ventures in India, China, Brazil and Turkey; IMG Media; IMG Events and Federations, IMG Fashion; IMG Models; IMG Art+Commerce; IMG Clients; IMG Tennis and Golf; IMG Academy; IMG Consuting and IMG Licensing. More information is available at www.imgworld.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

About the Tour of Alberta The Tour of Alberta: Canada’s Pro-Cycling Festival is a six-day stage race scheduled to be held September 3 to 8, 2013.  The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, awarded the inaugural Tour of Alberta with a 2.1 sanctioning in September 2012, making it one of the highest level pro cycling events in Canada, and one of the highest level events in North America. An annual event beginning in 2013, the event will be broadcast live daily in Canada on Sportsnet, and broadcast internationally on various networks, as it is expected that the event will host riders from over 20 countries around the world.

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For more information, please contact:
Val Mellesmoen
Alberta Peloton Association/Tour of Alberta                                          
valm@albertapeloton.ca

780-982-7277

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City Television to air documentary on Making the Tour

Edmonton, Alberta Canada … At 6:00 p.m. Monday, September 2, 2013, cycling fans and soon-to-be cycling fans will get a behind-the-scenes look at both what it takes to organize a major international sporting event like the 2013 Tour of Alberta, as well as what it takes to be able to compete in it.

Making the Tour is a 30-minute documentary produced by City Television in Edmonton that offers a unique look at what it takes to both plan – and compete – in Canada’s first major professional pro cycling stage race, the 2013 Tour of Alberta from September 3 to 8, 2013.

The program includes interviews with Tour of Alberta organizers, and representatives of the 10 communities involved in hosting the event in its inaugural year.

The program also includes the personal story of 20-year-old Kristopher Dahl, of Calgary, who earned a spot on one of the teams – Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis – by winning the under 23 group in the 2013 Banff Lake Louise Bikefest in June 2013. Through interviews with Dahl and his family, cycling fans will see what is required in terms of training, commitment and determination to make it as a pro cyclist.

City’s Making the Tour airs on City Television in Edmonton and Calgary at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, September 2, 2013.

For more information, go to www.citytv.com/edmonton/

For more information on the Tour of Alberta, go to www.tourofalberta.ca. Follow the race on Facebook at TourofAlberta, or on Twitter @TourofAlberta/#tourofalberta.

About City Television City™ television stations in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg offer viewers intensely-local, urban-oriented, culturally-diverse television programming. A distinct alternative to other conventional television stations, City engages its viewers with dynamic on-air personalities and delivers an entertaining mix of news, local-interactive formats such as: Breakfast Television and CityLine; as well as local Canadian and US acquired prime time entertainment programming. City is a part of Rogers Broadcasting Limited, a division of Rogers Communications Inc. (TSX: RCI and NYSE: RCI) which is a diversified Canadian communications and media company.

About the Tour of Alberta The Tour of Alberta: Canada’s Pro-Cycling Festival is a six-day stage race scheduled to be held September 3 to 8, 2013.  The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, awarded the inaugural Tour of Alberta with a 2.1 sanctioning in September 2012, making it one of the highest level pro cycling events in Canada, and one of the highest level events in North America. An annual event beginning in 2013, the event will be broadcast live daily in Canada on Sportsnet, and broadcast internationally on various networks, as it is expected that the event will host riders from over 20 countries around the world.

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For more information, please contact:
Val Mellesmoen
Alberta Peloton Association/Tour of Alberta                                           
valm@albertapeloton.ca

780-982-7277

Lance Corbett
City Television, Edmonton
Lance.Corbett@rci.rogers.com
780-440-7717

 

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Emerson Drive, Jaydee Bixby, Two Fools on Stools join exciting range of local performers at Tour of Alberta community festivals

Edmonton, Alberta Canada … An exciting blend of Alberta culture and performers will be part of the 2013 Tour of Alberta Festivals, as cycling fans from across the province and around the world celebrate Canada’s first major international professional cycling event, September 3 to 8, 2013.

While the athletes race across 900 kilometres of Alberta prairies, plains, and foothills, race fans and festival lovers will be able to be part of the action at 10 unique community festivals featuring live music and entertainment, local foods and fun activities for the whole family.

“Each festival features a great line-up of Alberta performers and cultural events, and every festival will have something different for people to enjoy,” said Duane Vienneau, Executive Director of the Tour of Alberta. “Our host communities have done a great job in showcasing the culture of their communities and regions at each of the festivals, and working with Alberta Culture, we are very excited to be able to complement this with headline Alberta performers.”

Headline entertainment for the 2013 Tour of Alberta Festivals include:

Edmonton – 4:30-5:30 p.m., Tuesday, September 3
Sir Winston Churchill Square

Calgary – 2:00-3:00 p.m., Sunday, September 8

115 4th Avenue SW

Two Fools on Stools
Featuring Gordie Johnson and Kelly Hoppe from Big Sugar

Blues-rock fans will rejoice when two member of the Canadian Group Big Sugar perform as Two Fools on Stools in both Edmonton and Calgary for the Tour of Alberta. Vocalist and guitarist Gordie Johnson and harmonica and tenor saxophonist bring an acoustical sound to the blues, rock and reggae.
www.bigsugar.com


Red Deer – 1:00-2:00 p.m., Thursday, September 5

4736 50th Street


Emerson Drive

Emerson Drive is a Canadian country music band founded in 1995 in Grande Prairie, Alberta. The band found early success under their original band name, 12 Gauge, charting two singles on the Canada county charts and a music video on CMT. Changing their name to Emerson Drive in 1999, the group moved to Nashville, Tennessee where they recorded two albums and charted several hits on both the U.S. and Canadian country music charts.
www.emersondrive.com


Drumheller – 1:15 p.m. -2:15 p.m., Friday, September 6

80 Veterans Way

Jenn Beaupre
A born singer, Alberta’s Jenn Beaupre studied opera before teaching herself the piano and trying her hand at songwriting. After winning many awards, including Calgary’s Stampede Youth Talent Showdown’s most promising artist, she was part of Canadian Idol, making it right through to the night before the Top 10 was chosen. A highly talented singer, songwriter and performer, she was invited to open for the Moscow Ballet on their Canadian tour in 2008-2009.
www.jennbeaupre.com

 

Black Diamond – 2:00-3:00 p.m., Saturday, September 7
511 3rd Street

Jaydee Bixby

Jaydee Bixby is a Canadian country musician who was the runner-up on the first season of Canadian Idol. In 2008, he released his first album Cowboys and Cadillacs, and in 2010, a second album Easy to Love. Born in Drumheller, Alberta, where he grew up, and moved to Red Deer where he attended Hunting Hills High School, Jaydee calls Alberta home.
www.JaydeeBixby.com

In addition to the headline performers, Tour of Alberta festival goers can enjoy daily entertainment at various festival including Ukrainian dancers, Cheer Team performances, BMX demonstrations, mascot races, children’s bike parades and First Nations celebrations.

For a the full line-up of entertainment schedules at each of the 10 Tour of Alberta festivals, and for updates and information on the Tour of Alberta, go to www.tourofalberta.ca. Follow the Tour of Alberta on Facebook a http://www.facebook.com/TourofAlberta and on Twitter @TourofAlberta/#tourofalberta.

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For more information, please contact:
Val Mellesmoen
Alberta Peloton Association/Tour of Alberta                                          
valm@albertapeloton.ca

780-982-7277

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