Archive for the ‘Movistar Team’ Category

Kristoff Wins Monumental Milan-Sanremo

maandag, maart 24th, 2014
Alexander Kristoff wins Milan - Sanremo 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

Norwegian sprints to career-defining victory  

Alexander Kristoff of Team Katusha took the biggest win of his career yesterday at the 2014 edition of Milan-San Remo. The Norwegian triumphed in the cold and the rain by unleashing a powerful sprint on his Ultimate CF SLX at the end of 300 km and just under seven hours of tough racing. His success in Italy’s biggest one-day race marks the third victory in a Monument for Katusha following Joaquim Rodríguez’s successive wins at Il Lombardia in 2012 and 2013.

Katusha to the fore in the wind and rain

With the blizzards and freezing conditions of the 2013 edition still fresh in the memories of many, nobody could blame the riders for longing after more pleasant conditions this year. Unfortunately for them, it wasn’t to be as they rode through rain and hail for the entirety of the race, providing a spectacle of endurance and suffering for spectators at home.

Katusha leading the Peloton at Milan - Sanremo 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

Katusha proved to be among those most hardened to the extreme conditions with many riders still present in the finale to work for Kristoff and all riders finishing the race. The Russian duo of Pavel Brutt and Aleksandr Kuchynski were highly visible through the gloomy conditions, upping the pace in a depleted peloton prior to the penultimate climb of the day, up the Cipressa, to reel in the day’s break.

Heading up the race’s final climb of the Poggio, which topped out just 6 km from the finish line, Kristoff was able to stay in touch with the front group as several riders attempted to break away and put the sprinters in difficulty. Fortunately for Kristoff he still had Italian Classics specialist Luca Paolini at his side. Paolini put in an enormous effort to shepherd Kristoff back to the front of the pack down the dangerous descent into Sanremo and then kept the pace high to within the last 600 metres, putting off any late attacks.

Luca Paolini at Milan - Sanremo 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

Sprint Royale

An elite group of around 25 riders made it to the line to fight for the win with many of the pre-race favourites and previous winners still present, including Fabian Cancellara, Gerald Ciolek, Mark Cavendish and Peter Sagan. Nevertheless, with some 300 km in the legs Kristoff proved to be the strongest, surging ahead in the final 150 metres to win by a couple of bike lengths over Cancellara and Team Sky’s Ben Swift.

Alexander Kristoff on the podium at Milan - Sanremo 2014 / Photo: Tim De Waele

“It was the best moment of my life”, claimed a delighted Kristoff after the finish, who was keen to highlight the work by his teammate Paolini: “I just said, ‘I’m here Luca,’ and he brought me to the front. He could stay in the group, follow the attacks and he did a great job. I’m very thankful to him. […] A sprint after 300 km is different from one after 200 km. Normally I don’t lose much power even on a long stage”. The Norwegian is well aware of the significance of yesterday’s win and the impact it will have, “Milan-Sanremo really puts you on the map and it’ll always stay in my career. It’s important. It’s almost unbelievable.”

Lobato takes 4th for Movistar Team

Perhaps one of the most standout performances yesterday came from Spain’s Juanjo Lobato, who in his debut Milan-Sanremo just missed out on the podium by finishing 4th. It was a hugely encouraging display by the young sprinter who is in his first season for Movistar Team and rounded off a perfect day for Canyon.

Canyon bikes have now triumphed six times in cycling’s Monuments since 2009.

Canyon Pro Sports

Movistar Team Reign Supreme in Argentina

maandag, januari 27th, 2014

Movistar Team came away from an intense week of racing at the Tour de San Luis in Argentina with two stage victories and the overall to round off a dream start to their 2014 campaign.

Following Nairo Quintana’s impressive solo victory atop the Cerro el Amago on stage 4, new-recruit Adriano Malori doubled up the following day with an outstanding performance in the 19.2 km ITT. What’s more, Quintana was able to use the team’s new Speedmax CF to good effect by overcoming the four second deficit to then-race leader, Phillip Gaimon, to pull on the leader’s jersey, which he successfully defended to the end of the race.
Adriano Malori on stage five of the 2014 Tour de San Luis / Photo: Graham Watson

Important Result

Despite a rough start to the week with stomach problems plaguing members of the team in addition to the misfortune suffered by the squad racing at the Tour Down Under, where two riders were side-lined after crashing heavily, Movistar Team came out of the season-opening races on a high. Directeur Sportif José Luis Jaimerena was keen to praise his rider’s efforts: “Starting the season this way is always important, especially for the team’s morale.”
Nairo Quintana is the winner of the Tour de San Luis 2014 / Photo: Graham Watson

What’s to Come

The entire Movistar Team will be in Madrid this Friday for their official team presentation before the racing calendar picks up the pace. With Quintana himself claiming that he is yet to hit top-form, expect plenty more to come from the boys in blue over the coming season.

Team Movistar Overall Rankings:

1. Nairo Quintana
43. Andrey Amador
45. Benat Intxausti
81. Adriano Malori
97. Fran Ventoso
101. Pablo Lastras

Movistar Team and Canyon: On the road to success

First Win in the Bag: Quintana Climbs to Victory at Tour de San Luis

vrijdag, januari 24th, 2014

Nairo Quintana opened Movistar Team’s 2014 victory account by taking an impressive solo win at the summit finish of stage four of the Tour de San Luis in Argentina. Movistar Team set a fierce pace at the foot of the climb to Cerro El Amago at the end of the 169 km stage, setting up Quintana perfectly to launch his attack.

Nairo Quintana on stage four of the 2014 Tour de San Luis / Photo: Graham Watson

The 9.4 km ascent suited the Columbian’s style perfectly as he was once again able to showcase his exceptional climbing talent aboard his new Aeroad CF, finishing 50 seconds ahead of his nearest rival and putting over 4 minutes into current race leader Phillip Gaimon’s advantage. The race is now perfectly poised heading into the penultimate stage, a 19.2 km ITT around the streets of San Luis, where Quintana will deploy the Speedmax CF to try and close the 4 second gap separating him and Gaimon in the GC.

Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) wins Stage 4 of the 2014 Tour de San Luis / Photo: Graham Watson

Having already placed riders on the podium twice in previous stages, yesterday’s win marked the first victory for Movistar Team in 2014 and will set the precedent for the rest of the season. What’s more, it marks the first success in the new partnership between Canyon and Movistar Team. We look forward to more of the same ¡Grande Nairo!