Quick transfer update before diving deep into World Championship stuff...
While Rik Verbrugghe's ploeg is losing some good guys for 2015 in Dylan Teuns, Loic Vliegen and Stefan Küng, who are all going professional with BMC, but he has reloaded well for next year.
Joining the team for 2015 are three new signings (as of right now) including Swiss Thery Schir, Belgian Nathan Van Hooydonck and Australian Jesse Kerrison.
-Schir is built like brick house and kicks faces in. He is mainly known from his track exploits as he is the current Swiss Omnium Champion, current U23 European Team Pursuit Champ and was bronze medalist in the Madison World Championship. While he is mainly on the track, Schir is the current Swiss U23 TT Champion...well just because Stefan Küng rode the Elite TT, where he was 2nd behind Cancellara.
-Van Hooydonck is transferring from Bissell Development to ride a more European-based schedule. He was quite the strong junior but this year he spent a lot of time in Belgium finishing up school and riding kermesses until later in summer, when he came over to join his Bissell teammates. He will fit in with the classics squad.
-Kerrison is finally getting some god damn recognition. Verbrugghe must have been reading my twitter because I just mentioned a couple week ago that Kerrison needs more respect as a sprinter (he does have 9 wins this year) and it seems like he will be getting a chance in Europe now. He might have a longer transition because the racing style and whatnot but he could be dangerous pretty soon into his career.
Ignazio Moser and Oskar Svendsen move on from cycling
In other news, there were a couple of riders that have announced plans to move on from cycling, at least temporarily in one case.
Perennial under-performer Ignazio Moser announced his "retirement" from the sport. Moser cited a lack of motivation and drive for his decision to stop racing as well. He had already stopped once as a junior but picked it up again in the U23s and had some decent success but without the drive to get through the rough times, he stagnated and never really hit his peak. He did win a stage in the Tour de Guadeloupe in the beginning of August but he hasn't touched the bike since then. He will be going into the real world but seems to be destined to work with the family's vineyard.
Also announced was Oskar Svendsen's decision to step away from Team Joker and cycling to focus on a degree in psychology at the University of Trondheim. Svendsen was plunged head first into stardom after his win in the junior World TT Championship in 2012 in Valkenburg and a record Vo2max score. His transition to the pros was rough with weak pack skills and motivation that could flucuate at times. He got through the Tour de Bretagne this year rather well but was slammed with a virus that set him back again. He had another high in Valle d'Aosta with a near stage win but then following multiple crashes in l'Avenir, he was out of contention early. He was selected for Worlds but chose to forgo the event and step away from the sport. There is a good probability that he will return to cycling sometime in the near future but he will remain one of the biggest enigmas in cycling's recent memory.
You can go to this article on procycling.no for a deeper look
-Former Belgian U23 RR Champion Jens Wallays signed with Topsport Vlaanderen for 2 years. This is the team's 5th signing for 2015 including Jef Van Meirhaeghe, Bert Van Lerberghe, Floris De Tier and Oliver Naesen.
-Ronde van Vlaanderen U23 winner Dylan Groenewegen has signed with Roompot-Orange Cycling for 2015. He is always a top 10 contender and should be able to grow with the team in races that he prefers even if I think that team is an just another example of how cycling cannot move on from the past and will still be stuck in old way. Not that I have a strong opinion or anything.