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Chain Links; Dumoulin stops racing, TDF on NBC ending plus more news, January 25, 2021

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Dumoulin walks away (at least for now) while cycling fans in the US get to wonder about their future cycling coverage options with the demise of NBCSports.

106th Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2020 - Men Elite
Tom Dumoulin of The Netherlands and Team Jumbo-Visma during the 106th Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2020
Photo by Bas Czerwinski/Getty Images

TÊTE DE LA COURSE

Welcome to Chain Links here at The Podium Cafe, a selection of cycling news links from across the internet. I do the work so that you don’t have to.

Along side the weekend victories in cyclocross, the drama on Jumbo-Visma with Tom Dumoulin cycling fans in the US face the concern of cycling television coverage lapsing with the demise of the former OLN, Versus and now NBCSports network.

A note about this Chain Links: The descriptions of the links are pulled directly from the meta information provided by the sources. The ones in italics are from translated pages.

GRUPPO COMPATTO

Zeeman: ‘We have often offered Tom help, this is sad’ - Telegraaf.nl - Sports director Merijn Zeeman of Jumbo-Visma calls the decision of cyclist Tom Dumoulin to take a break in his career a result of a longer process.

Wout van Aert hopes for the return of ‘great rider’ Dumoulin, Van der Poel understands choice - Telegraaf.nl - Wout van Aert has responded to the temporary stop of his teammate at Jumbo-Visma Tom Dumoulin. For the Belgian, the news did not come out of the blue, he said after the cyclocross race in Hamme.

Tom Dumoulin will stop cycling for the time being - Telegraaf.nl - Tom Dumoulin, in consultation with his team Jumbo-Visma, has decided to stop cycling for the time being. The 30-year-old Limburger first wants to determine for himself what he actually wants with his life. The decision is a big surprise, because the day before, his team announced that Dumoulin was looking forward to the new season.

Classic Valenciana: victory of the French Manzin, sixth Pacioni - La Gazzetta dello Sport - In Spain, the first European race of the season ended with a sprint finish. According to the Spanish Aristi, third the Belgian Capiot. Manzin, 26, is originally from the island of Reunion, in the Indian Ocean

Dumoulin stops indefinitely - La Gazzetta dello Sport - The Jumbo-Visma Dutchman had announced plans for a 2021 Tour de France not later than Friday. And now?

Manzin beats Aristi at the Valencia GP, the first race of the year in Spain - AS.com - The French Direct Energie sprinter won the Classica Comunitat Valenciana-GP Valencia, a race that has opened the European calendar in full wave of cancellations.

Wout van Aert: “Pleasant to be a rabbit instead of a hunter” - WielerFlits - Wout van Aert had to fight hard for it, but at the end he managed to win the victory in Overijse. “I’m still waiting for the day when the cross will be simple. But that will take a long time, I think ”, he said in the flash interview .

Interview: Fernando Gaviria spoke of everything, hard and head-on - El Tiempo - The Colombian cyclist is in the United Arab Emirates preparing for the season.

Van Aert too strong for Van der Poel and records a double stroke - Telegraaf.nl - Wout van Aert won the cyclocross race in Overijse on Sunday. It was the last game of the World Cup and the Belgian from Jumbo-Visma also secured the overall victory in the standings over five games. Mathieu van der Poel, his only remaining competitor, finished second in the Druivencross. Both have two World Cup victories to their name this season. Briton Tom Pidcock came in third.

Zeeman: “A Dumoulin who is not” happy “is also not good for the team” - Sporza - Friend and foe will have caught their eyes on Saturday when they heard the news that Tom Dumoulin will temporarily stop racing. The decision does not come completely out of the blue. Certainly not for Merijn Zeeman, sports director at Jumbo-Visma.

Marcel Kittel about the searching Dumoulin: “I know what it feels like - Sporza - Two years ago, Marcel Kittel hooked up his bicycle at the age of 31. “I know how difficult it is when you have doubts about what you are doing. Hopefully Tom will find answers soon,” said Kittel of his ex-team mate.

Organizing committee for the cyclocross world championships: “We assume that it will continue” - Sporza - In Ostend, the organizing committee of the cyclocross world championships is almost finished with the course. “We hope that there will be a chance to race next weekend”, says Rik Debeaussaert.

Amaury Capiot finishes 3rd in the first race on European - Sporza - Today’s 1st race in Europe was on the program with the Classica Comunitat Valenciana. Frenchman Lorrenzo Manzin (Total Direct Energy) raced to victory, Amaury Capiot finished 3rd.

Van Aert hands out Van der Poel and wins World Cup for the 3rd time - Sporza - Wout van Aert passed the last test for the World Cup with flying colors. In Overijse he put Mathieu van der Poel a good minute behind. Van Aert thus crowns himself for the 3rd time as the overall winner in the World Cup, which means that Tim Merlier can go to the World Cup as 9th Belgian.

Minister Ben Weyts: “We want to organize the World Cup, but it must be safe” - Sporza - Due to the outbreak of the South African variant of the corona virus in Ostend, the cyclocross World Cup next Sunday is on the slope. “We will decide together with the virologists based on the numbers.”

HORS CATÉGORIE

Giro d’Italia possible for Chris Froome before Tour de France - Cyclingnews - Israel Start-Up Nation manager Carlström not ruling out two Grand Tours for Briton

Alvarado wins elite women’s Cyclo-cross World Cup in Overijse - Cyclingnews - Branda and Bakker complete podium

NBC Shuts Down NBC Sports Network - Tour de France Live Coverage - The premier cycling event of the year may have to find a new TV home.

Tour de France broadcaster NBC Sports will shut down by the end of the year - CyclingTips - Television network NBC Sports is set to shutter before the end of 2021, leaving a question mark over the way fans will watch the network’s premier cycling property, the Tour de France, as well as a collection of other major races.