BIG NAMES FOR NEW YORK MARATHON

Cancer-survivor and ex-footballer Geoff Thomas will team up with former Tour de France winner, Stephen Roche to run the New York marathon on November 2.

Thomas will have the backing of current marathon world-record holder Paula Radcliffe, who will also be competing in the event. ?New York is one of the toughest marathons in the world but Geoff faced a tough fight in beating cancer, so I?m sure he and the team will have the grit and determination to cross the line,? said Radcliffe.

Thomas and Roche will be joined another cyclist, Brian Smith, a former British champion in the fundraising event. Five years ago, Thomas was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukaemia and was given just months to live. A bone marrow transplant from his sister saved his life and since then Thomas has raised over £1 million for leukaemia research in the UK.

Roche, who will be riding in his first marathon, commented: ?Training for the marathon is hurting me but I know there are people who are hurting even more. I am healthy enough to do it and in doing so I can raise funds and awareness for people who are less well off physically?.

The team will be raising funds for the Geoff Thomas Foundation, which is aiming to raise £20 million to save lives by funding blood cancer drug trials at six specialist centres in the UK. See www.geoffthomasfoundation.com for more details.

STARS TO KICK OFF REVOLUTION

An all star quartet of road pros will mark the opening of the first round of the Revolution series this year.

Bradley McGee will ride the event as his farewell race before retirement at the end of the season, accompanied by fellow Australian, Stuart O?Grady.

Joining the Australian duo at the first round in Manchester will by Britain?s David Millar as well as CSC rider Matt Goss.

?We?ve been trying to get Stuey [O?Grady] to the Revolution for years,? commented James Pope of FACE Partnership. ?So getting him to Manchester got McGee?s last track race is great and will make a superb season opener.?

The road pros will have their work cut out, with Olympic medallists Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy and Steven Burke all set to ride.

Tickets to the first round have already sold out, but tickets for the remaining Revolution events on December 6, January 10, and February 21 are available from www.cyclingrevolution.com

BRITISH MADISON STARS

Fresh from her impressive ride at the World Championships where she shepherded Nicole Cooke to an historic win, Lizzie Armistead and compatriot Alex Greenfield dominated the Madison event at the Amsterdam Six-Day yesterday.

Armistead and Greenfield finished with 116 points, 24 points clear of Wild and Koedooder in second.

Armistead will now head to Manchester for the first round of the track World Cup, a significant step forwards in her preparations for London 2012.

MOST COMPREHENSIVE DOPE TESTING EVER

With the recent doping revelations from the Tour de France, news that British Olympic and Paralympic athletes were tested over 1,300 times in the run-up to the Beijing Games is reassuring.

In UK Sport?s most comprehensive ever pre-Games testing procedure, over 400 tests were conducted on the 151 medal-winning British athletes as well as tests conducted by the IOC during the Olympics.

Some further statstics: 98% of athletes in high priority sports were tested at least twice out of competition; an additional 533 samples were collected from short-listed athletes who didn?t make the final team and medallists from rowing, cycling and athletics were tested at least three times with 84% of all tests conducted out-of-competition.

?This highlights the commitment there is within high performance sport in the UK to make a stance against doping and show the rest of the world that we are doing everything within our powers to compete cleanly and fairly,? said Andy Parkinson, Acting Director of Drug-Free Sport at UK Sport. ?It should act as a sign of the effort and determination that will be at the heart of our work ahead of London 2012.?

WORLD CUP ADDITIONS

Plowman Craven will be sending a team to the Manchester World Cup next weekend, in what will be the largest ever British contingent at a round of the World Cup.

Craig Maclean, Jon Mosley and Evan Oliphant will be representing the Plowman team along with 23 other British riders also set to ride.

NATIONAL TROPHY HEADS TO IPSWICH

41 elite cyclo-cross racers will take to the start of the third round of the National Trophy this weekend in Ipswich.

Ian Field (Hargroves Cycles), the current series leader, will be glad that round two winner David Willemsens is not riding, but will have his work cut out against an in-form Rob Jebb (Wheelbase) and Jody Crawforth (Arctic Premier RT).

DRAGON RIDE JOINS FORCES WITH TOP GLOBAL SPORTIVES

One of the UK?s most popular sportive events, the Dragon Ride, will enter a new ?super-partnership? with some of the top international sportives.

The Dragon Ride Wales will work together with the Wattyl Lake Taupo Challenge in New Zealand and South Africa?s Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour to promote all three rides and nations as ?must-visit? destinations on the international calendar.

The partnership will meant shared marketing and sponsorship strategies as well as planning and tourist liaison. ?We have had close links with the Lake Taupo Challenge and Cycle Tour for some years now,? said Lou Lusardi, founder and organiser of the Dragon Ride. ?It?s the logical step for us and other top rides in the world?.

www.dragonride.co.uk

STANNARD STILL DECIDING

Britain’s Ian Stannard currently contracted to the Belgian Landbouwkrediet team until the end of the season, is currently still to decide where he will be racing next season.

Stannard has attracted interest from other teams, but the British rider who rode and completed the Tour of Flanders, Ghent-Wevelgem and Paris-Roubaix in his first full season as a professional, is yet to decide where he will be as of next year.

LAWS BOUNCING BACK

Sharon Laws is bouncing back after having had a metal plate removed from her ankle recently.

Disaster struck for Laws when she broke her ankle six weeks before the Olympics. All was not lost, thanks to a metal plate which was inserted into the offending ankle. Laws recovered to help Nicole Cooke win gold medals at the Olympics and the World Championships and has just had the plate removed.

GILHAM TO SIGMA SPORT

Kit Gilham of the Kinesis squad has been confirmed to be joining the Sigma Sport team for 2009.

Gilham, winner of a stage and the King of the Mountains jersey in this year’s Ras, will be a useful addition to the London-based team.