Archive for the ‘Katusha’ Category

Kristoff Strikes Again for Second Tour Stage Win

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Alexander Kristoff / (c) TDWsport.com
Just three days after his first-ever Tour stage win, Norwegian sprinting sensation Alexander Kristoff again showed his class by chasing down breakaway in the final metres to take his second victory in this year’s edition of the Tour de France. His powerful kick in the final 150 metres proved not only Kristoff’s talent, but the value of his stiff, agile, and aerodynamic Aeroad CF SLX.

The outcome of the stage to Nimes was determined only when Jack Bauer and Martin Elimiger, who had led the race for nearly 200km, were caught in the closing meters. ‘That was close, really close,’ said Kristoff at the finish. ‘The breakaway was strong, but thanks to teammates Spilak, Smukulis, and Paolini, we caught them just before the finish, and I was able to take take the win for the day.’
Pro Bike Check – Kristoff’s brand new Aeroad CF SLX

Alexander Kristoff / (c) TDWsport.com

Kristoff fresher than Kittel and Greipel

Although Kristoff himself didn’t feel too good during the day’s stage after the gruelling mountains of the prior two stages, he was able to find his feet again in the finalé which included such sprinting elites as Peter Sagan, Marcel Kittel and Andre Greipel.

Kristoff admits that, ‘Compared to them, I’m not a super-fast sprinter, and during the stage they made no impression of being tired, but my victory at the end suggests that maybe they were exhausted after the Alps.’

Joaquim Rodriguez / (c) TDWsport.com

Purito King of the Mountains lead again

Additional good news for Katusha and Canyon is that Joaquim ‘Purito’ Rodríguez remains in the polka-dot jersey as best overall climber. On the stage to Nimes there were no designated climbs, nevertheless, it was a tough day for the Spaniard. ‘That was really not a stage for me: flat, windy, wet…the stage nearly ended it all for me, because there was a crash and I was involved in it. I am glad this stage is over. On the rest day we will relax a bit before we head Tuesday to attack in the Pyrenees.’

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MADE FOR WINNERS: Kristoff Sprints to Tour de France Stage Win

Friday, July 18th, 2014

Alexander Kristoff / (c) TDWsport.com
Team Katusha’s Alexander Kristoff has taken his maiden Tour de France stage win aboard the brand new Aeroad CF SLX . The Norwegian sprint sensation proved the strongest in the bunch gallop to the line on stage 12 from Bourg-en-Bresse to Saint-Etienne to notch up Katusha’s first victory in this year’s race.

Vineyards and melting tarmac

A hilly parcours under the July sun made for a challenging day as the riders raced their way through the Beaujolais wine region. With a reduced peloton of around 60 riders making up the front group in Saint-Etienne, Kristoff launched his sprint early from behind the wheel of OPQS rider Matteo Trentin.

Alexander Kristoff / (c) TDWsport.com

Unleashing enough power to hold off green jersey wearer Peter Sagan by a bike length at the line, Kristoff took the first professional victory for the brand new, cutting-edge Aeroad CF SLX.

Alexander Kristoff / (c) Canyon

A childhood dream come true

Having already placed second on two stages so far in this year’s race, the 2014 Milan-Sanremo once again confirmed that he is one of the most versatile sprinters in the pro peloton by being able to stay with the front-runners on challenging roads.

Kristoff was ecstatic with his breakthrough performance: “This is a great feeling. I have been dreaming about this since I was a child.”

Sports Director Torsten Schmidt was also content that the team’s approach had paid off: “We believed in him and gave him our full support, everything went 100% according to plan.”

The high mountains loom

Having already hit the hills of the Vosges and the Jura, today the race heads into the high mountains with a HC summit finish at Chamrousse. Team captain,Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez, will be looking to extend his lead in the King of the Mountains competition over the coming days. With the likes of Simon Špilak and Yuri Trofimov riding well, everything is still to play for as Katusha looks to add to its stage haul.

Joaquim Rodriguez / (c) TDWsport.com

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The new Aeroad CF SLX: MADE FOR RACING

Mountain Man Purito Rides into Polka Dots

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Joaquim Rodriguez / (c) TDWsport.com
With seven categorised climbs on the cards crammed into 160 km of racing, the profile to Stage 10 from Mulhouse to La Planche des Belles Filles looked more like a saw blade than a race route. Exactly the conditions required then for Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez to launch his assault on the King of the Mountains competition.

As soon as the flag dropped, the Katusha captain was in the breakaway aboard his new Aeroad CF SLX and went on to collect 40 points over the course of the day.

Joaquim Rodriguez / (c) TDWsport.com

The stage victory may have just passed him by, but Purito was still pleased to pull on the polka dots on the podium:

“My main objective for today was to take the mountain jersey, which is why I went in the breakaway. Today would have been nice to win a stage too, but it was a really hard day and I saw that the yellow jersey group never let us have enough time.”
Canyon Pro Sports

Alejandro Valverde / (c) TDWsport.com

Valverde on Track

Movistar Team worked tirelessly to set up leader Alejandro Valverde for the tough final climb and were rewarded as the Spaniard crossed the line in third, boosting him to third overall in the process.

Crashes have taken their toll on the peloton so far in the race and with big favourites Chris Froome and Alberto Contador now out of the race, Valverde’s chances of standing on the podium in Paris are now even greater.

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Canyon at the Tour de France

Monday, July 14th, 2014

Alejandro Valverde / (c) TDWsport.com
The second week of the Tour de France is already underway as the race heads for the Alps. As the big favourites begin to show their cards, Canyon will be bringing you exclusive news updates, photos and all the latest information from the race.

Our Social Media Guru Robert will be following the action giving you a closer look into the inner workings of Katusha and Movistar Team. Can Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez hold on to the Polka-dot jersey? Will Alejandro Valverde continue his march up the General Classification? What’s the latest on the brand new Aeroad? Follow us on social media to get the full lowdown:

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Joaquim Rodríguez / (c) TDWsport.com

We’ve also got a whole load of gifts for Canyon fans spectating at the side of the road. Look out for the black Canyon Skoda if you want to get your hands on Canyon bottles, wristbands, musettes, stickers and special offer fliers.

So hit the road and support Katusha and Movistar Team at the Tour de France with us!

Joaquim Rodríguez / (c) TDWsport.com

Hunting for Yellow: Katusha and Movistar Team ready for the Tour de France

Friday, June 27th, 2014

Arc de Triomphe / (c) TDWsport.com
July is upon us and that can only mean one thing – It’s time for the Tour de France. “Le Tour” transcends cycling like no other race on the calendar, anyone who doesn’t know about cycling knows about the Tour de France. Images of the Yellow Jersey rolling through bright fields of sunflowers and battling up mountain passes are iconic and what many people associate with our sport.

For the riders themselves, this is the biggest race of the year – every pro wants to complete the Tour at least once in their career. As such, this three week-long Grand Tour is one of the toughest sporting events in the world. No one arrives at the start line to use this as a preparation race, every rider shows up in the form of their life. It’s a stress-fest. The battle for road position is intense, the average speeds considerably higher, and the risks of losing it all with one false move are far bigger than any other race on the calendar.

Three weeks. 21 stages. 3,664 gruelling kilometres. 198 of the world’s best bike riders. The 101st Tour de France is guaranteed to be a race to remember.

Seeing Yellow, Green and Polka Dot

Expect to see Canyon riders in the thick of the action throughout July as Katusha and Movistar Team field the strongest riders available to them. The Spanish squad have come away from victory at the Giro d’Italia on a high and will be looking to do the double with Alejandro Valverde, who will target the Yellow Jersey. Supporting Valverde will be an array of climbing talent to wreak havoc upon the rest of the field when the race hits the high mountains. This is seventh time the Spaniard has taken on le Tour and he has multiple stage wins to his name. Judging by his list of successes so far in 2014, Valverde is no doubt one of the favourites for the podium in Paris.

Alejandro Valverde / (c) TDWsport.com

A different approach will be taken by Katusha, who will be backing Alexander Kristoff to take the sprinters’ Green Jersey. The Norwegian has had a breakthrough season this year, taking his biggest career win at Milan-Sanremo back in March. Kristoff has the power and versatility to mix it up at the front on a variety of stages beyond the pan-flat drag races for pure sprinters. What’s more, he is one of the peloton’s most consistent performers, an essential trait for success in this competition.

Alexander Kristoff / (c) TDWsport.com

Katusha captain, Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez will be making his comeback at le Tour after crashing out of the Giro d’Italia. Following a monumental ride in 2013 to finish on the podium, the Catalan will be targeting stage wins this year and could be an outsider for the Polka Dot Jersey in the mountains classification. After a successful start to 2014, including victory in his home race, the Volta a Catalunya, bad luck struck Purito with a series of crashes in the Spring Classics and then at the Giro putting him out of action. Expect to see him at the front of the peloton whenever the road heads skywards as he looks to turn his season around.

Joaquim Rodríguez / (c) TDWsport.com

The Challenge Ahead

A drastic change of scene for the Tour de France Grand Départ in 2014 and what many people are predicting to be the toughest start for decades. Yorkshire. North England. God’s Own Country. No opening prologue time trial this year, instead the action kicks off with a tough 190 km road stage through the stunning Yorkshire Dales National Park. Tension will be high and crashes are all but guaranteed as the sprinter’s teams battle to bring their fast men to the finish line in Harrogate in the best position possible for the rare chance to pull on the Yellow Jersey.

While the opening stage is destined for the sprinters, Stage 2 is perfect for hilly classics specialists and could well see the GC favourites already showing their cards. Up hill and down dale for 200 km, the stage to Sheffield has no metre of flat and the narrow, twisting, heavy Yorkshire roads could well catch many teams out.

The race returns to the continent on stage 4 and poses another major challenge on stage 5 with 9 bone-rattling cobble sectors for the peloton to tackle. While many riders are used to taking on the Pavé, the GC favourites will be pinning all their hopes on coming through this stage without any major mishaps. The riders will hit the first real mountains the following weekend in the Vosges, with fireworks expected on Bastille Day including the steep summit finish to La Planche des Belles Filles prior to the first rest day. Then it’s into the Alps for stages 13 and 14, and two consecutive high-summit finishes to Chamrousse and Risoul.

After the Alps, there’s just one flat stage and one rest day to get some energy back into the legs before hitting the Pyrenees hard for the climax of this year’s race. The trend for shorter, more action-packed mountain stages continues with 125 km to Pla d’Adet and 145 km to Hautacam on stages 17 and 18 respectively, at which point we should have a real idea of who will win the Tour. There will be one final twist, however, with the only time trial in the race coming on the penultimate stage – a 54 km test to provide the last shake up in the GC. The following and final day, the peloton will roll into Paris at sunset for a Sprint Royale on the Champs-Élysées to crown the 2014 Tour de France champion.

Team Katusha line-up: Yuri Trofimov, Joaquim Rodríguez, Egor Silin, Simon Spilak, Alexander Kristoff, Aleksandr Porsev, Luca Paolini, Gatis Smukulis, Vladimir Isaychev

Movistar Team line-up: Alejandro Valverde, Imanol Erviti, John Gadret, Jesus Herrada, Benat Intxausti, Ion Izagirre, Ruben Plaza, Jose Joaquin Rojas, Giovanni Visconti

We wish both teams the best of luck for the Tour de France!

Movistar Team and Katusha at the Tour de France 2014 / (c) TDWsport.com

Giro d’Italia 2014: Katusha and Movistar Team Fight for Pink!

Thursday, May 8th, 2014
Purito in la Maglia Rosa 2012 / (c) ROTH

The 2014 Giro d’Italia is just around the corner and both Canyon ProTeams are set to be right in the hunt for the coveted “Maglia Rosa”. With 21 stages, two time trials, one team time trial and a whole host of big mountain stages, this year’s edition promises to be a close-fought classic.

Quintana at Tirreno Adriatico / (c) Graham Watson

In a race that will favour the featherweight climbers of the peloton, Nairo Quintana of Movistar Team and Katusha’s Joaquim Rodríguez line up at the start as marked men for the title. As two of the best climbers in the world, both have a proven track record over this kind of terrain.

Blues vs. Reds.

Canyon vs. Canyon.

Get ready for some epic racing as the 2014 Grand Tours get underway…

Rodríguez: “It’s time I netted a Grand Tour”

Purito is without doubt one of the most consistent Grand Tour riders in the world with a number of podium performances to his name, most recently 3rd place at the 2013 Tour de France. However, he has yet to stand on the top step at the end of a three week race. In the 2012 Giro d’Italia he came agonisingly close, taking two stage wins aboard his Aeroad CF and wearing the Maglia Rosa for much of the race before losing his lead in the final time trial by just 16 seconds.

Puito wins in Catalunya / (c) TDWsport.com

This year could be very different. Purito has targeted the Giro as his main objective for 2014: “It’s a route which suits me. It’s got a lot of long, hard stages.” Despite a disappointing showing in the recent Ardennes classics where he suffered injury from crashing, Rodríguez wrapped up the Volta a Catalunya in style earlier this year against an incredibly strong field and rightly goes into the race as one of the main favourites.

Luca Paolini in pink in 2013 / (c)  ROTH

The 2013 Giro was a huge success for Katusha with stage wins from both Maxim Belkov and Luca Paolini and multiple days in pink. The Katusha squad will be focussed on shepherding Purito through the mountains where the race will be decided: “The team is a very strong one, well-focused, and that’s always important.”

Quintana steps up to leadership

One of the performances that got people talking most in 2013 was Nairo Quintana’s debut Tour de France. After taking 2nd place overall, the best young rider’s jersey, the polka-dot jersey, not to mention a stage win, it was certain to all that it’s only a matter of time before the Columbian climber bags a Grand Tour. With a course so packed full of climbing, that win could come even sooner than many expected as Quintana takes to the start in Belfast as the man to beat.

Quintana wins in Argentina / (c) Graham Watson

With a stage race win and a number of consistent performances coming early in 2014, Quintana clearly has the form, and as last year’s Tour de France showed, the stamina to last three weeks. Movistar Team have a number of mountain domestiques to aid Quintana in his bid for overall glory but can also look elsewhere for success. Adriano Malori is racing his home Grand Tour and will have his eye on the stage 12 time trial, with two TT wins already under his belt this season it would be hard to bet against him.

The Contenders

Quintana and Rodríguez will have their work cut out if they want to arrive in Trieste wearing pink. This year a number of strong contenders will line up at the start to ensure an incredibly open race for 2014. Those to watch out for include BMC veteran Cadel Evans and OPQS’s Rigoberto Uran, both of whom finished on the podium last year. Past winners of the race riding this year include Ivan Basso of Cannondale, Michele Scarponi of Astana, and most recently, 2012 winner Ryder Hesjedal of Garmin -Sharp.

2014 Giro d'Italia / (c) RCS Sport

The Route

As is increasingly the trend with the Grand Tours, this year’s Giro d’Italia will get underway on foreign soil, this time in Belfast, Northern Island. Two sprint stages on the Emerald Isle follow the opening 21 km team time trial around Belfast on Friday, which will determine who gets to be the first rider to pull on the pink jersey.

After its brief stint abroad and a rest day after the weekend, the race returns home to the heel of Italy on Tuesday 13th May. The first real test for the GC contenders comes the following Saturday with the first category summit finish to Montecopiolo in the Apennines mountains. With gradients creeping up to 13%, stage 8 will provide the first proper climbing showdown.

Stage 8 / (c) RCS Sport

The next big test in the second week comes in the form of a 42 km individual time trial over the rolling Barolo vineyards. This stage is bound to have a big impact on the general classification and will likely define the rest of the race. Both our teams will deploy the Speedmax CF for absolute efficiency on the climbs and maximum speed on the flats and descents.

Stage 12 / (c) RCS Sport

Two first category summit finishes lie in store over the following Saturday and Sunday providing no let-up for the riders before the Giro heads into its brutal final week. When names like the Stelvio, Monte Grappa and Monte Zoncolon appear the end of a 3 week stage race, you know it’s going to hurt… Stage 16 will be explosive as the riders tackle three big summits in just 139 km of racing.

Stage 16 / (c) RCS Sport

Then on Friday there will be no place for the riders to hide as they face an excruciating 26 km mountain time trial.

Stage 19 / Photo: RCS Sport

Saturday brings the dreaded Zoncolon for the final GC battle. The Zoncolon has achieved legendary status in the Giro with its unfathomably steep 20% pitches and uneven gradients. It’s more like climbing a wall than a road. Massive crowds will line the mountain on this day as the final places in the GC are settled.

Stage 20 / (c) RCS Sport

The following day marks the final stage of the 2014 Giro d’Italia with a procession into the city of Trieste before a fast sprint finish.

Check back here for more content throughout the race and look forward to an action-packed 2014 Giro d’Italia!

Team Katusha Line-up: Joaquím Rodríguez (Spa), Maxim Belkov (Rus), Giampaolo Caruso (Ita), Vladimir Gusev (Rus), Alberto Losada (Spa), Daniel Moreno (Spa), Luca Paolini (Ita), Angel Vicioso (Spa), Eduard Vorganov (Rus)

Movistar Team Line-up: Nairo Quintana (Col), Andrey Amador (Crc), Igor Anton (Spa), Eros Capecchi (Ita), Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa), José Herrada (Spa), Gorka Izagirre (Spa), Francisco Ventoso (Spa), Adriano Malori (Ita)

Canyon Pro Sports

Ardennes Roundup: Dominant Week for Valverde!

Monday, April 28th, 2014
100th Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2014 Podium with Alejandro Valverde / (c) TDWsport.com

After 263 KM of racing and over 4700 metres of climbing, just one bike length separated Alejandro Valverde from victory at the finish line of Liège-Bastogne-Liège yesterday. The Spaniard came tantalisingly close to winning one of the toughest physical tests in cycling, only to be edged out by Simon Gerrans of ORICA-GreenEDGE in the sprint for the line.

Nevertheless, yesterday’s result capped off a fantastic week for Valverde and the Movistar Team. By piloting his Ultimate CF SLX to fourth in the Amstel Gold Race, a memorable victory on the Mur de Huy in Wednesday’s Flèche Wallonne and second place yesterday, Valverde proved to be the strongest and most consistent rider throughout the Ardennes Classics: “First, second and fourth in three Classics, there aren’t many out there who can achieve these results. […] I can’t really ask for much more.”

With eight victories to his name so far this season, Valverde is currently the most successful rider in the peloton in 2014. What’s more, he celebrated his 34th birthday on Friday. Valverde will now take a well-deserved break from racing before building up for an assault on the Tour de France in July.

Fourth for Caruso, no luck for Rodríguez

Heading into the Ardennes week, much expectation lay on the shoulders of Joaquim Rodríguez having performed exceptionally in these races over the years. Unfortunately though, this year it wasn’t to be as crashes took him out of both Amstel Gold and Flèche Wallonne. The damage sustained meant “Purito” couldn’t possibly be at his best for Liège-Bastogne-Liège, forcing him to withdraw prior to the finale.

Katushas Giampaolo Caruso pushing hard at Liege - Bastogne - Liege 2014 / (c) TDWsport.com

The baton was therefore handed to Katusha’s other uphill specialists, with Dani Moreno and Giampaolo Caruso performing exceptionally across the week. Moreno was a constant feature in the top-ten, with 9th place in all three races, meanwhile Caruso animated both Amstel Gold and Liège-Bastogne-Liège with attacking displays. The Sicilian, who normally rides in aid of others, made the most of the opportunity to ride for himself by attacking in the finale of yesterday’s race, only to be swallowed up by his pursuers within 100 metres from the line. Caruso still managed to hold on to take fourth place and with it Team Katusha’s best result of the Ardennes week.

Grand Tours just around the corner

With the 2014 Spring Classics season over, it’s now time for the Grand Tours. Up first is the Giro d’Italia, which starts on the 9th of May in Northern Ireland. We’ll be keeping you up to date with all the latest action as Nairo Quintana of Movistar Team and Rodríguez with Katusha fight it out for the pink jersey!

Canyon Pro Sports

Made for the Mur: Valverde takes historic Flèche Wallonne for Canyon

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014
Alejandro Valverde takes Flèche Wallone 2014 /(c) TDWsport.com

On the final brutal ascent of the Mur de Huy, it was Movistar Team’s Alejandro Valverde who proved the strongest to take a historic victory for Canyon at Flèche Wallonne.

Following wins in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, Canyon bikes have now triumphed four times on the trot at the Ardennes Classic, in an unprecedented run of success.

With gradients well in excess of 20%, watching the legendary finish up the Mur de Huy resembles a super-slow-motion bunch sprint – few other races in the world provide such a vivid impression of the riders’ effort. To succeed, the winner has to time their effort to perfection – go too early and you’ll fade away, wait too long and it’s too late.

Valverde, who also triumphed in the race back in 2006, proved to have the legs and the experience as he built a gap over a select group of uphill specialists on his Ultimate CF SLX just after the steepest section of the climb.

Having notched up his eighth victory of the year, the Spaniard becomes the most successful rider so far in 2014 and will go into Sunday’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège as the man to watch. The race marks the climax of the Ardennes Week and could be the perfect birthday present for Valverde, who turns 34 on Friday.

Canyon Pro Sports

Tour of Flanders Preview: Katusha and Movistar Team Ready to Attack the Cobbles

Friday, April 4th, 2014
Katushas Luca Paolini leading the peloton on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

The 98th edition of the Tour of Flanders will roll out from the centre of Bruges on Sunday to mark the start of one of most evocative, demanding, and downright insane spectacles in professional cycling. For the cycling-mad locals, it doesn’t get any bigger than De Ronde van Vlaanderen. Their race eclipses all other events on the international sporting calendar, and that includes the Tour de France. The proof lies in the millions who come out to line the course just to catch a glimpse of their heroes in action. All across the region they congregate on the cobbled climbs, bier in one hand, frites in the other, to celebrate this festival of cycling.

The Challenge Ahead

While the spectators soak up the atmosphere, the riders undergo an all-together different experience. Between Bruges and Oudenaarde the course winds its way over 260 km to tackle 17 fierce Hellingen in total. What these climbs may lack in altitude, they more than make up for with gradients in excess of 20% in addition to the race’s defining feature: the cobbles! It is a true test of a rider, requiring the very highest levels of endurance, power, bike-handling skills, experience, tactical nous, as well as the very best from their equipment: one mechanical mishap at the wrong time and it’s game over.

Profile Ronde van Vlaanderen 2014 / Photo: rvv.be

Katusha Back Two-Pronged Attack

One rider more who is than up for this challenge is Katusha’s Classics specialist, Luca Paolini. The 37-year-old has all the necessary experience to be considered a real frontrunner for Sunday and is already planning how he can go for the win: “I’ll have two days to mull over where to attack […] I’ll have a film in my head beforehand of what I’d like to do.”

Katushas Luca Paolini leading the peloton on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

While Paolini is ready to go on the offensive, should a select group arrive at the line to fight out the sprint, Katusha will have one of the big favourites in their line-up in Alexander Kristoff, who came fourth in last year’s race. The Italian and the Norwegian combined perfectly in the finale of Milan-Sanremo two weeks ago, and if similar circumstances play out on Sunday, a second Monument victory in 2014 could be on the cards for the Russian ProTeam.

Katushas Alexander Kristoff fighting on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

An Open Race for Movistar Team

Despite not achieving great results in previous editions of De Ronde, Movistar Team cannot be discounted, especially with the team backing Andrey Amador. The Costa-Rican loves racing in the cobbled classics, as was proved at Gent-Wevelgem last Sunday where his determined breakaway attempt only got caught by the peloton within the final 1000 metres.

Movistar Teams Andrey Amador attacking on the cobblestones / Photo: TDWsport.com

With the likes of Giovanni Visconti and JJ Rojas out with injury, Sunday provides a great opportunity for some of the squad’s youngest members, including German Jascha Sütterlin and Spaniard JuanJo Lobato, who will be taking on their first Ronde.

Canyon wishes Katusha and Movistar Team the best of luck and looks forward to an exciting race!

Provisional Lineups for our ProTeams: 
Katusha: 
GUSEV Vladimir, ISAYCHEV Vladimir, KRISTOFF Alexander, KUCHYNSKI Aliaksandr, KUZNETSOV Viacheslav, PAOLINI Luca, SMUKULIS Gatis, TSATEVICH Alexey
Movistar Team: 
AMADOR Andrey, ERVITI Imanol, GUTIéRREZ Iván, LOBATO Juan Jose, DOWSETT Alex, QUINTANA Dayer, SÜTTERLIN Jasha, VENTOSO Fran

Canyon Pro Sports

Home Victory for Purito at 2014 Volta Ciclista a Catalunya

Monday, March 31st, 2014

Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez of Team Katusha maintained a narrow lead in yesterday’s final stage of the 94th Volta Ciclista a Cataluya to take the overall ranking for the second time in his career, following victory in 2010. Just one week after Kristoff’s emphatic win in Milan-Sanremo, Katusha once again came away from the weekend with a big haul of points for the UCI WorldTour rankings. The weeklong stage race takes place on Purito’s home turf and attracted a stellar field with several grand tour favourites, such as Chris Froome and Alberto Contador taking the start but unable to better the local favourite over the mountainous route.

Purito wins Stage 3 of Volta Catalunya 2014 / Photo: TDWsport.com

Climbing High to GC Success

The foundations for overall victory were laid on the stage 3 mountaintop finish to La Molina. Rodríguez proved once again that he is one of the best in the world when it comes to steep uphill finishes by sprinting away on his Aeroad CF within the snow-lined final kilometre to gain vital seconds on the rest of his GC rivals. The stage marked Purito’s first win of the 2014 season and put him in the race leader’s jersey.

Katusha and Movistar Team leading the peloton at Volta Catalunya 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

Over the following stages Katusha controlled the race well to defend Purito’s slender lead against the inevitable attacks from Contador, who lay just 4 seconds behind on GC. Katusha Directeur Sportif, Dmitry Konyshev, was pleased with the outcome of the race: “This WorldTour win is important for the team and for Joaquim too because he’s Catalan.”

Purito celebrating on the podium of Volta Catalunya 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

Rodríguez now looks in great shape for his major 2014 objectives: “Now I look forward to trying to win in Liège-Bastogne-Liège and then on to the Giro d’Italia.”

Quintana 5th for Movistar Team

Columbia’s Nairo Quintana was the second Canyon pro to feature at the sharp end of the GC, only ten seconds down on Rodríguez, highlighting just what a close fought race the 2014 edition of the Volta a Catalunya was. Quintana is also looking to build his form ahead of the Giro d’Italia in May, and seems to be on the right track after this week and his 2nd place at Tirreno-Adriatico

Canyon Pro Sports