Former Italian cyclist, Francesco Moser criticised modern Tour stars, Bradley Wiggins (Sky) and Vincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Cannondale) in an interview with Italy’s Il Gazzettino on Tuesday.

“Let’s take it slowly,” Moser said when asked if Wiggins is a new star. “He won the yellow jersey because the Tour was designed specifically for his characteristics. I don’t think he’ll be able to double with a different parcours. I think [Alberto] Contador is the only true great.

Sky was the strongest at the Tour, he said. “The Englishman had a team that did what it had to do, while he relied on his time trial strengths.”

Nibali, he said, “made a couple of attacks and quit… Not much to worry the strongest… Nibali is only a good rider, not a champion. You need more to merit this title. He’s trying, but he’s always missing something.”

On Nibali’s new rumoured €3m contract with Astana, Moser said, “In my days cyclists were stronger and earned less. People are getting excited for nothing, because they have little to cheer for.”

Moser won the Giro d’Italia in 1984. He won numerous one-day races: Milan-San Remo, Paris-Roubaix three times, Tour of Lombardy twice, Flèche Wallonne, Paris-Tours and the 1977 World Championships. He admitted to blood doping when he broke the hour record in 1984.

Sky signs Baby Giro winner, Dombrowski

Team Sky announced on Monday that it signed two 21-year-old Americans for the next two years, Baby Giro winner Joe Dombrowski and Ian Boswell.

“Ian and Joe are two of the most talented under-23 riders in the world,” Team Sky Race Coach Bobby Julich explained in a press release. “We will offer them the best possible race and training programmes to aid their progression.”

Dombrowski became the first American winner of the Under 27 Giro d’Italia or the GiroBio in June.

Rujano signs for Vacansoleil

José Rujano, according to Spain’s BiciCiclismo website, will step up from second division team Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela to join the first division with Vacansoleil next year.

The Venezuelan won two stages of the Giro d’Italia last year, but failed to impress his boss this year. “It’s a good thing his contract ends this season,” team manager, Gianni Savio said at the Giro. “He’s done nothing this Giro. … No second chances.”

Savio helped bring Rujano to Europe and saw him to third overall and the mountains jersey in the 2005 Giro. Rujano rode for Quick Step, Unibet and Caisse d’Epargne before re-joining Savio’s team last year.

UCI announces teams for WorldTour licences

The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) announced yesterday the 18 teams registering for first division, WorldTour licences. Europcar pulled out of the running, with Argos-Shimano expected to take its spot next year.

“I do not have the means to apply for the WorldTour,” Europcar’s general manager, Jean-René Bernaudeau told France’s Velo Chrono website. “It’s 30 cyclists, it’s a very busy schedule and it was not possible to increase my budget, to have the cyclists, to make it possible.”

Dutch team Argos is the only team on a list of six applying for a licence or renewal with AG2R La Mondiale, Euskaltel-Euskadi, Garmin-Sharp, Rabobank and Saxo Bank-Tinkoff. Sky is amongst 12 teams already in possession of a 2013 WorldTour licence.

Roelandts breaks collarbone

Jürgen Roelandts (Lotto-Belisol) broke his collarbone two days ago in one-day race, Binche-Tournai-Binche, according a team press release. He will undergo surgery immediately to speed recovery of the double fracture.

In the Tour Down Under in January, the Belgian crashed and fractured a vertebra in his neck on stage one.

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  • Mike


    TDF this year the most boring??? Well…..your opinion I supose.

    Could it be that the decline in doping means that the hard to believe, read exciting, attacks we used to see in the mountains were, after all, merely down to heavily doped riders with the best doctors.

    As for Contador, Mr tainted meat himself, I make no excuses for disliking the none repentant doper. Nothing to do with “holier than thou” I feel almost as strongly about David Millar, but at least he admited his past and is doing his best to rectify it.

    The Vuelta exciting??? Not realy. The parcourse was designed purely to get a Spanish winner. That is why there was no variety in the stages, and the laughably short TT also included a significant climb as they did not want to give any other type of rider any chance.
    Why did the organisers not just simply exclude any none Spanish rider from the teams, that way they could have been sure from day one.

  • David

    I think Moser should keep his trap shut. Apart from blood doping his win in the Giro was assisted by a camera crew’s helicopter in the final stage time-trial (‘We were young and care free’ p125) which assisted Moser and then practically blew Fignon off his bike with its down-draft. As for his trainers/doctors Conconi and Ferrari…

  • David Chadderton

    Sorry Francesco, but you sound like a grumpy old man, and I am older than you are! We looked up to you in your peak riding years, admired your great wins. Now we wonder what all the riders around you were taking, don’t we? Drug testing seemed unimportant historically but we all knew it went on; just to mention the devastating loss of Tom Simpson says it all. Major races now are team events with strict riding orders from management control. Maybe you raced with more individual freedom. We want to see real efforts from racers, unassisted by laboratory chemistry. If that means riders exhausting themselves and not winning, that is as it should be, isn’t it?

  • Richard P

    Wiggo won the Tour cleanly and we should all celebrate that fact, the Vuelta and the Mens Olympic road race on the other hand were won by ex -dopers who showed no remorse for their cheating and until there are life bans for doping then it will continue to fester in our sport, Moser belongs to cycling history that is best forgotten.

  • simon rodgers

    Yes – that is rich coming from the man who admitted frequent use of blood transfusions and was helped by the convenient placing of a tv helicopter to give him a tail wind in a time trial!

  • Steve

    Moser was a great champion. He was interviewed and gave his opinions. End of story. There’s no harm in this, his opinion makes interesting reading, unlike all of the web BS coming from two bit amateurs sitting in front of their computers. Moser was asked these questions because he WAS a great rider and his opinion is therefore interesting. Maybe if you guys put a bit more effort in, you’d be worthy of an opinion too!

  • SP

    I think we all know that Wiggins has won his one and only Tour (de France) it is plain to see that he is not in the same league as Contador. Love him or hate him (Contador) he is an amazing rider and by far the best in the wrold. As for him doping, he tested positive for the smallest amount of clenbuterol, never enough to aid performance.

    The new wave of British Cycling fans seem to take on this anti doping stance as their ‘ Holier than Thou’ argument to any non british winner!
    Sorry Guy’s but in Moser’s days they all doped. So are we supposed to strip every riders result up until post Armstrong (another very worthy ‘Champion’)

    This years TDF was one of the most boring races in years, poor old Nibali attacked a couple of times over 200 meteres then gave up, whereas this years Vuelta was the most exciting stage race I have ever watched.

  • Ken

    Hmm, one ex doper praising another….

  • Des Ludford

    You doped Francesco………therefore your opinions on the sport could never interest me.

  • JD

    Ahem, but at least this generation is more likely to do it on bread and water, Francesco.

  • tim hammond

    Wiggins is clean. You Mr Moser were not, the same goes for Contador. Thus the comparison is unfair. Its like racing a Greyhound against a Yorkshire terrier.

  • Peter Goodall

    Moser shouldn’t be make “any” comments or criticisms about today’s clean riders after what he “did” during
    his career.Sour grapes,and as for his praise of Contador,History speaks for it’s self. I’m with TG on this one.

  • Orlando S

    Riders where stronger then in… Moser`s dreams! Training methods have evolved, and talent is pooled from many more countries, and a larger population. Why has Italy done so badly more recently? Because competition is much, much tougher! Plus if you pay riders more (one of Moser`s gripes), you`re bound to attract more talented people, who may have gone elsewhere. Sorry Moser, you belong in a museum!

  • Jon

    Contador is truly a great rider, which makes it all the more sad for the sport that he doped. Despite his apparent lack of remorse and laughably short ban I hope he’s learned his lesson.

  • TREK

    If Moser has admitted to blood doping for the 1984 hour record, shouldn’t the UCI strip him of this title?

  • TG

    Is this the same Mr Moser who won the Giro because the organisers designed the course to suit him? How many big mountains were in the 1984 Giro? Riders were stronger in those days, but that was probably to do with the substances taken.

  • Kevin Blackburn

    It’s really quite naff old champions comparing the current cycling elite – its OK putting someone’s achievements in some sort of context, and giving an opinion, but why from a negative point of view (Wiggins had a amazing year, Nibali’s a great attacking rider…)? Moser was OK himself, but only won 1 Grand Tour, the Giro his home tour, and may have won the points several times at the Giro, but how many Olympic medals did he win? Did he ever win 4 stage races in the one year? Did he conquer the track completely, and then switch to the road?