Going Out: Wheel away to glory in Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge

Jay Asser 29/08/2015
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Pedal power: The first race to be held around the Nad Al Sheba course.

With the summer winding down, the UAE’s biggest community cycling challenge returns with the annual Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge.

The big event is still three months away, but as usual, build-up rides will take place in the lead up to the challenge, with the first of the four held on Friday, September 4 around the Nad Al Sheba cycle course.

Entering its sixth year, the Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge brings cycling enthusiasts from not only across the region, but from around the world to participate by the hundreds.

Gradual progression: The first build-up race will be held over a distance of 35 km.

“We have created the perfect platform which caters for all levels and cycling experience,” said a spokesperson for the Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge.

“With the Build-Up rides, cyclists have ample preparation time for the big event in December and we encourage all keen riders to participate and help promote cycling in Dubai.”

More than 2,500 riders are expected to enter the challenge this year and hundreds have alr-eady registered for the first of the four build-up rides around the Nad Al Sheba course.

The build-up rides increase in distance for each event – from 35km to 45km to 65km and finally 85km – preparing cyclists for the full 92km race on December 11.

Even if you’re a beginner on the bike, the build-up rides will get you in shape by the time winter rolls around. They will also help organisers determine starting positions for the challenge.

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“Entries are growing year-on-year and we are expecting this to be the biggest Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge yet. With the support from the Dubai Sports Council and the UAE Cycling Federation for our event we are confident that we will continue to build on the already established success,” added the spokesperson.

Registration costs Dh50 for an individual build-up ride, but there is also a discount option for all four build-up rides and the Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge for 10 per cent off until tomorrow, August 30.

To sign-up and for more information, visit www.cyclechallenge.ae. The first build-up ride will commence bright and early at 06:00.

Shake off the summer rust, hop back on your bike and get in the cycling groove in the first of four build-up rides leading to the Spinneys 92 Cycle Challenge.

What: Spinneys 92 Cycle Challenge first build-up ride
Where: Nad Al Sheba cycle course, Dubai
When: Friday, September 4 from 06:00 to 09:00
Contact: Visit www.cyclechallenge.ae to register and for more information.

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Lindeman wins seventh Vuelta stage as Froome suffers

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Celebrations: Lindeman.

Bert Jan Lindeman won Friday’s seventh stage of Spain’s Vuelta at La Alpujarra summit during a first stage in the mountains which proved gruelling for Chris Froome.

The Lotto-Jumbo rider withstood the searing Andalusian heat, powering ahead of Belarusian Ilia Koshevoy of Lampre and Italy’s Fabio Aru of Astana at the line. France’s Jerome Cousin of Europcar finished fourth after taking a tumble in the final straight while en route to victory.

Colombian Johan Esteban Chaves of Orica-GreenEdge holds the leader’s red jersey, gaining valuable time on Tour de France winner Froome, who crossed the line some 27 seconds behind the favourites.

Sky’s Froome is bidding for a Tour-Vuelta double but fell outside the top 10 in the overall standings and is now 12th at 1min 22sec after the first test at altitude.

The summit finish favoured the breakaway group with five riders including Lindeman building up a 13-minute lead on the peloton at one point with the Dutch rider proving the strongest and most cunning in the final race for the line.

“For me, it’s unexpected to win on our arrival in the mountains, with so many riders targeting the overall standings,” said Lindeman.

The 26-year-old cleverly let his rivals tire themselves out by repeatedly attacking before he broke through with the decisive acceleration.

“It’s never easy,” said Chaves. “It was a long day with sweltering heat. I’m very happy, each extra day in the red jersey is an important day. I feel good, my legs are very good. To be with the best is an honour.”

Froome’s title rivals – Fabio Aru (Astana), Nairo Quintana, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) – all profitted from his difficulties.

Aru was impressive gaining 34 seconds on Froome with a brutal acceleration in the final 1.5km.

“It’s the first summit finish and I was looking for some answers,” Aru said. “I wasn’t great on the shorter climbs but now I’m recovering and that’s good. Now we’ll just look to recover for the stages to come.”

Saturday’s eighth stage will leave Andalusia with the 182.5km run from Puebla de Don Fadrique to Murcia largely set to favour the sprinters despite a category three climb to cross twice in the final 40km.

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fahad 27/08/2015
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