Many more readers come to this blog during the week as opposed to the weekends. So in case you missed some things over the weekend, here are a few short items to catch up on.

Green edge jersey

Greenedge will unveil their new jersey but last night there was a storm in teacup over the design. The image comes via Mark Beretta. The design certainly doesn’t look inspiring but I don’t think it’s the real jersey. A well-informed correspondent has emailed to say the design isn’t finished and as a couple of others pointed out, the team is set for a proper launch on the eve of the Tour Down Under.

Taste is always subjective but when designing a jersey, it’s not just how cool it looks at the café stop. It must be visible, both when racers look for team mates but also for TV viewers on helicopter shots. Visibility and identification are what matter, only yesterday in the Vuelta and the GP Plouay I heard TV commentators getting Sky and Garmin-Cervélo mixed up thanks to their black kit. As you probably know the job of a commentator isn’t easy, with images on a small monitor but at the same time they’re broadcast pros. If they can’t spot the difference, how can an average viewer? Each false reference to the team is a valuable loss of publicity.

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Green Edge in World Tour?

Bannan Greenedge

New Aussie team Green Edge is patiently naming its riders. In a story on, it appears they are aiming for a full house of 28 riders and so far they have confirmed 11 riders. They’re Travis Meyer, Cameron Meyer, Jack Bobridge, Stuart O’Grady, Simon Gerrans, Simon Clarke all Aussies. Plus Canadian Svein Tuft, Eritrean Daniel Teklehaymanot and a trio of Dutchmen in Pieter Weening, Sebastian Langeveld and Jens Mouris.

Sneaky manager Shane Bannan says “there’s no point in looking at this group or any future signings for a headline act“. Some solid riders there but less than 300 ranking points in total, meaning if they were in the World Tour today they’d rank lower than Vacansoleil, Ag2r and Quick-Step. Based on this you’d be forgiven for thinking the team is planning a modest start.

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Red faces for Green Edge?

The Australian headline

Stuey has wanted to be a part of this project since we first went public with wanting to put a team at the Tour de France, back in Adelaide last January… …We’ll be rolling out more big-name signings in the days and weeks ahead.

That’s the headline screengrab plus a quote from an article in The Australian, the biggest selling-newspaper Down Under. Only it seems to be premature at best.

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Valuing a rider: past performance vs. future prospects

Visit a stockmarket and you’ll soon learn the value of a company tends to be based on expectations of its future performance. The on-screen prices flash and change as tiny pieces of information, as well as big news, have their effect on the valuation of a stock.

On screen stock prices... or is that a race profiles or maybe a power curve there?

A stockmarket isn’t the only place where assets are traded. In the world of pro cycling a team owner will regard riders as assets. Some teams do this openly, for others managers it’s more of a subconscious calculation.

Either way, teams need to put a value on a rider in order to decide whether to hire him. There are various factors at play. Obviously a star rider has a high price but this is based on expectations about his ability to win future races more than his stock of past wins. In addition, can the rider contribute to the team, whether in riding or via other means, from leadership to a sense of humour? Will the rider bring additional sponsors? Will the the rider keep away from scandal?

Past performance is a guide to the future
So far all these questions involve the future tense, they are about what the rider might offer once they’ve been signed. It’s like stockmarket assessing the outlook for, say, Nestlé or General Motors. It’s not so much what has happened in the past but how things will turn out in the future, what will happen to sales and profits. But there’s a new factor at play in cycling that is not about the future but the past: ranking points.

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Lloyd’s unlucky Lotto ticket

Matthew Lloyd, the Australian rider on the Omega Pharma – Lotto team got fired today.

In times past I’ve often found the various incarnations of the Lotto team to be rather chaotic, surviving from one month to the next, often with ability to lose a race by strategic bungling and above all, some chaotic recruitment (eg here and here) and man-management skills. That’s harsh but for years they’ve been a distant second to national rivals Quick Step.

In recent times though that’s changed. They’ve refocussed with Philippe Gilbert as their leader and André Greipel was a useful addition. There have been other changes and some measures they’ve toppled Quick Step.

But it seems the office politics haven’t gone away. Only this morning I brought tales of a split in the team that’s got traction across the cycling media. Rather than countering with some good news, they’ve now fired Aussie rider Matthew Lloyd.

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GreenEdge – the trail goes cold

You might remember the suggestions on The Inner Ring that new Aussie team Green Edge Cycling might have been resorting to the use of secret pre-contracts with riders. Time for an update. I’ve been in contact with the team’s backers and this has been denied in clear terms. But in public the riders linked to … Read more

Dear Green Edge Cycling

I’d like to discuss the issue of rider recruitment with the people involved in the Green Edge Cycling team before revealing anything more. But I am having trouble reaching people, my emails to Andrew Ryan’s Jayco address have gone unreplied, except for an out-of-office autoreply stating he’d be back at work this week. So this … Read more

New Australian team poaching riders?

Melbourne might be 10 hours ahead of European time but a new Australian cycling team is already a year ahead when it comes to planning for 2012. The team is going under the label of Green Edge Cycling, something The Inner Ring was first to reveal. As a reminder Green Edge Cycling is being led … Read more