Cavendish snaps over Armstrong questions

Mark Cavendish, Omega Pharma-QuickStep 2013 team launch

Mark Cavendish became upset after several journalists asked about Lance Armstrong at the team OmegaPharma-Quick Step presentation on Tuesday.

"There's been reports that he's confessed to doping but I haven't seen any interviews yet, so until then I can't really comment," he said early on in the day

He added that he will be unable to watch the Armstrong interview with Oprah Winfrey. He said, "I'm travelling to Argentina at the time."

But in an interview later, having been asked about Armstrong consistently through the day he became upset. "**** off, seriously **** off if you're asking about this," Cavendish reportedly said. He turned to someone and said, "Can you get him away please? Please get this guy away. He just wants to talk about Lance, **** off."

Giro unveils Paul Smith designed jerseys

The Giro d'Italia organiser on Monday unveiled the 2013 pink jersey and other leaders' jerseys designed by Paul Smith.

Smith said in a press release, "It was an absolute honour and delight to be asked to design the four jerseys for the Giro and I hope that the simple approach that I've made is acceptable to you all; putting red piping with the pink, cleaning all of the jerseys up to keep them as simple as possible and adding a little drawing of a cyclist by myself onto the jerseys."

In addition to the pink jersey, he applied his simple approach to the blue mountains jersey, the white young rider jersey and the red points jersey. His signature on the jerseys' collar and his stripes on the left sleeve.

Smith joins other famous designers, like Dolce & Gabbana, who have put their touch on Italy's Grand Tour.

Hunt helps launch team in Azerbaijan

Jeremy Hunt, after retiring with team Sky, takes up the head sports director roll with Azerbaijan's Synergy-Baku team.

"I really didn't think that I would be back in cycling so soon after my retirement, but when I was offered the Baku Racing Project role, it was too good an opportunity to be missed," Hunt said in a press release. "Working with young athletes and helping them to achieve their goals and become professional bike riders is what I enjoy."

The Synergy was unofficially launched yesterday. It will race in the third division with the aim of getting an Azeri rider to the Rio Games in 2016.

The team includes six local riders, Brit David Clarke, Ireland's David McCann and Connor McConvey. In addition to team captain, McCann will be the team's performance analyst.

David McQuaid, son of UCI president, Pat, was asked by the Azeri Federation to head the project last year at the World Championships. He said he was delighted to team with McCann and Hunt.

"Jeremy wants to get into the coaching and development side of things," McQuaid said. "He will pay specific attention to the six Azeri riders, their race and training programme."

"A hands on job is doesn't scare me," Hunt said. I will take them "to my base in Melbourne and train and test them, to make them suffer and ultimately get them into the best shape of their cycling lives before the Tour de Azerbaijan at the start of May, which ultimately is a huge goal for the team."

Along with Azerbaijan, the team will mostly race on the Asian tour for the first half of the year.

Amstel Gold finish to mimic Worlds

The Amstel Gold Race this spring will use the same finish line that Philippe Gilbert crossed to win his World Championship title. The Dutch one-day race will continue after the Cauberg climb along the flat in Valkenburg.

According to local reports, the race will feature 33 climbs, including four times up the Cauberg, to make nearly 4000 metres of climbing.

The organiser also extended its contract with the start city Maastricht and Valkenburg for the next five years, through 2017.

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