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Alejandro Valverde wins 2nd stage of Volta a Catalunya
March 24, 2015 (18:45) [ Indexed from New Zealand Herald ]
OLOT, Spain (AP) " Alejandro Valverde of Spain sprinted away from a tightly-bunched pack to win the rain-swept second stage of the Volta a Catalunya on Tuesday.The 34-year-old rider finished in five hours, two minutes, 49 seconds,... More...
Alejandro Valverde wins 2nd stage of Volta a Catalunya (The Associated Press)
March 24, 2015 (18:45) [ Indexed from Yahoo! Sports ]
Alejandro Valverde of Spain sprinted away from a tightly-bunched pack to win the rain-swept second stage of the Volta a Catalunya on Tuesday. The 34-year-old rider finished in five hours, two minutes, 49 seconds, just ahead of Movistar teammate Jose Rojas of Spain and Switzerland's Martin Elmiger, both of whom had the same time as Valverde. Maciej Paterski of Poland retained the overall lead at the end of the 191.8-kilometer (119-mile) mountain stage from Mataro to Olot. Wednesday's third stage will be a 156.6 kilometer (97.3 mile) mountain stage in and around Girona, featuring two category 1 climbs. More...
Lobato and Valverde to lead Movistar at Milan-San Remo
March 19, 2015 (02:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Movistar will line up at Milan-San Remo with last years number one ranked rider, Alejandro Valverde, and Juan Jos Lobato as its leaders for the first monument of 2015. Lobato has had an impressive start to the season with wins at the Tour Down Under and Vuelta a Andaluca along with three top-five finishes at the Dubai Tour. The 26-year-old was fourth on his debut at Milan-San Remo last year and will start the race as one of the favourites for the podium. Valverde hasn't ridden Milan-San Remo since 2006 when he finished 24th on the Via Roma which will host the finale of the race for the first time in seven years.ADVERTISEMENT While Valverde hasnt enjoyed the same successful start to the year that he did in 2014, with the 34-year-old registering just one win at the Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana, he has finished on the podium on several occasions, including his last race, Strade Bianche and is likely to be animator in the final 50km. The duo will first race the GP Nobili in anticipation of the 293km monument with the majority of their teammates to take part in both events. Jasha Stterlin and Alex Dowsett will make their 2015 debuts at the 1.HC race while Rory Sutherland makes his return to racing having broken his collarbone earlier in the season. Dowsett was forced to delay his attempt on the Hour Record after he crashed during a training ride in January and has been out of action since. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Video: 2015 Strade Bianche highlights
March 09, 2015 (20:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Having broken clear with 20km left to race, it was Greg Van Avermaet (BMC), Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) andZden›k tybar(Etixx-Quick Step) leading Strade Bianche and starting the final kilometre 16 per centVia Santa Caterina climb into Sienna together. Van Avermaet was the first attack on the steep slopes with Valverde quick to try and close down the move. As Valverde struggled to reign in Van Avermaet, a blistering acceleration by Stybar saw the Czech national champion jump clear just before the crest of the summit before he rode solo over the finish line for hist first victory of 2015. Van Avermaet crossed the line two seconds in arrears with Valverde 18 seconds back.ADVERTISEMENT "In the final kilometres I thought that Valverde would attack but then Greg surprised me and went really early, at the bottom of the steepest part of the final climb," Stybar said. "I got on his wheel but I knew Id have to overtake him at the top otherwise Id be second. I wanted to win today and so did everything I could to overtake him and take this beautiful win." Click here to subscribe to the Cyclingnews videochannel You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Valverde runs out of steam in Strade Bianche finale
March 07, 2015 (19:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
When Alejandro Valverde forced the winning breakaway after having his Movistar team control the race at Strade Bianche for much of the day, it seemed that the Spaniard, as the most accomplished climber of the trio with Greg Van Avermaet and Zdenek Stybar, would be the man to beat in the uphill finish. Instead, Valverde was the first man dropped in the finale, and he admitted after the race that he probably did too much work. I tried to show that attitude the fans ask us to bring to the races, and that's why I'm super happy with my performance today," Valverde said. "I took command of the race far from the finish, always going for all the moves and creating some myself, and that might have made me reach the finish not as strong as I'd have liked to." Valverde made the winning selection when the peloton split with more than 40km left to race. Movistar controlled the early breakaway until Tinkoff-Saxo, Sky, Astana and BMC pushed to the front ahead of the Monte Sante Marie, but Valverde was well positioned with the critical move came.ADVERTISEMENT "The work from the start by the whole team was fantastic. The gusty winds today made important to stay in good position all the time, and as we started all sections of 'sterrato' on front, we gained much confidence." Valverde took the reins to distance some of the elite group of riders, including last year's runner up Peter Sagan (Tinkoff-Saxo), Fabian Cancellara (Trek) and Vincenzo Nibali (Astana). He brought along Van Avermaet, Stybar, and briefly Sep Vanmarcke (LottoNl-Jumbo), inside the 20km to go mark. The effort to get rid of Cancellara might have burned up a few too many matches considering the intense final kilometer ahead. "Surely I might have taken a bit too much of an effort, but on the other hand, we have to value what Van Avermaet and Stybar did," Valverde said. "They're tremendously talented, they're specialists in these race and they might even come in better condition than I did, considering they're supposed to peak for {the Tour of Flanders] and [Paris-]Roubaix and they rode an important race like Omloop Het Nieuwsblad last Saturday. I took some gels at 5k to go, hoping I would recover a bit as I was feeling empty, but I wasn't able and I also started to cramp - I really had to stay content with third place. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
News shorts: Movistar and Etixx-QuickStep confirm Strade Bianche teams
March 06, 2015 (19:00) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Valverde to lead Movistar at Strade Bianche Alejandro Valverde will lead the Movistar team at Strade Bianche on Saturday. The 200km race starts in San Gimignano and finishes in Siena, where the Spaniard hopes to top his third-place performance from last year. Valverdes teammates will be Andrey Amador,Giovanni Visconti, Jasha Stterlin, Marc Soler, Pablo Lastras, Fran Ventoso and Enrique Sanz.ADVERTISEMENT The team also confirmed their Paris-Nice roster that will include Spanish road race championIon Izagirreand Beat Intxaustialong withImanol Erviti, Rubn Fernndez, Dayer Quintana, Eros Capecchi, Gorka Izagirre andJos Joaqun Rojas. Etixx-QuickStep announce Strade Bianche and West-Vlaanderen rosters You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
Majka poised for GC showdown in Oman
February 19, 2015 (11:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Rafal Majka (Tinkoff-Saxo) solidified his place at theTour of Oman Wednesday with a seventh-place finish during the stage 2 finale, moving into 11th overall before the Green Mountain stage on Friday. Majka is just six seconds behind general classification rival Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), who sits second overall after coming in as runner-up behind Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing). Two steep uphills in the closing kilometres sparked multiple attacks and a blistering pace that whittled the final front group down to just 19 riders that finished 50 seconds ahead of the field. Tinkoff's Peter Sagan was fifth on the stage. GC contenders Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Team Katusha) lost time to the leaders.ADVERTISEMENT It was tough finish, said Tinkoff director Sean Yates. The peloton caught the breakaway in the absolute finale after hammering over the first of the two finishing climbs. It really put a large part of the field under severe pressure, and the peloton was split on the second climb as the favorites started attacking. Peter and Rafal received great support from the team and did what they had to in following these attacks. Yates said he was especially pleased with Majka's performance. Its his second day of racing in 2015, which shows how well he has prepared. Its important for the overall classification as several GC favorites were dropped today. Majka came to his first race of the season from a team training camp in Tenerife after riding throughout the winter on his home roads in Poland. He said the camps focused on building a strong base for the season, and the early preparation appears to have paid off in Oman. You can read more at Cyclingnews.com More...
News shorts: Gaviria courted by WorldTour, Greipel and Valverde to Mallorca
January 26, 2015 (21:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
News shorts: Gaviria courted by WorldTour, Greipel and Valverde to MallorcaContador's Vuelta-winning Tarmac up for auction, MTN personalizes jerseys By Cycling News. January 26, 20:24 Gaviria courted... All the latest news headlines from Cyclingnews.com More...
Valverde: 'The Vueltas first half suits me'
January 12, 2015 (16:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Valverde: 'The Vueltas first half suits me'Rodriguez predicts Andorra stage will 'have an impact on cycling world-wide'By Alasdair Fotheringham. January 10, 18:022009 Vuelta a España winner Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) has recognised that the opening stages of the Vuelta in 2015 are “very good for me” - and if the Vuelta’s first few days in Andalusia in 2014 are anything to go by, Valverde could well be the rider to beat in the race’s first week next August, too. Last year - also in Andalusia - Valverde led the Vuelta early on, the day after his Movistar squad took the opening team time trial in Jerez de la Frontera. He then returned to the lead with a spectacular victory in the uphill finish at La Zubia on stage six, before finally finishing third overall - a result which left Valverde in an all but unbeatable position in the UCI WorldTour’s individual classification. As for next August, the first week’s series of short, sharp uphill finishes in Andalusia, culminating in a much more difficult ascent on stage seven to Capilleira should be right up Valverde’s street again. The Alpujarras climb is in an an area of Spain Valverde knows well, given he regularly trains at altitude nearby, basing himself at the Sierra Nevada ski station. “It’s a very well-balanced route, but very demanding,” Valverde, now 34, said during the Vuelta 2015 presentation. “The time triallists and climbers will both have their opportunities, but there can be a few days for breakaway specialists to go for it as well.” Stage two and stage four’s short but tricky uphill finishes, particularly with time bonuses once again on offer throughout the race, could well be opportunities for Valverde to snatch both the lead and early triumphs in the first week. “But those stages also good for riders like Purito [Joaquim Rodriguez - Katusha],” insisted Valverde, who first finished on the Vuelta podium back in 2003, when he took third and the points jersey. “They are all difficult ascents where you need to make a sudden acceleration and you have to fight to be sure you don’t start sliding down the overall classification by a few seconds. Positioning on those stages is going to be very important, and you have to be really focussed throughout.” As for the stage to Capilleira in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, “it’s going to wear the riders out. The first part of the stage is a real leg-breaker, and the last climb is a challenge, but it’s the heat that could really make people suffer.” A stage finish in Valverde’s home town of Murcia then follows, after a double ascent of the Cresta del Gallo climb. “It’s a tricky day, because the ascent [of the Cresta del Gallo] is difficult, and the descent is really, really technical, and we have to do it twice.” The next stage, to the Cumbre del Sol, is one Valverde may well like, too, given local journalists have said the Vuelta’s fifth ascent is similar to the one where he won at La Zubia in 2014, “not too long, maybe five or six kilometrs, but with steep sections.” “But overall the Vuelta’s first part doesn’t have too many long climbs, and those steep finishes will suit me very well,” Valverde concluded. Rodriguez believes Andorra stage will be historic The second part of the Vuelta begins in Rodriguez's adopted home country of Andorra, and the Katusha climber says he believes the ultra-hard stage 11 “will have an impact on cycling both in the Vuelta and on cycling world-wide.” “It’s closer to a stage in the Dolomites in the Giro than to the stages in the Vuelta or Tour we’re used to seeing. This is one that will go down in history because it’s so hard.” As for the second week of climbing in Cantabria and Asturias, Rodriguez told Spanish TV “I know the Escudo - a first category climb mid-way through stage 14 - but not the [final ascent that day] of the Fuente del Chivo.”  “I can see, either way, that it’s a very hard stage, you’ll be feeling worn down by that point in the race and on top of that, stages like that are ones where everybody wants to have a go. Some riders will want to improve their placing overall or try to secure their position on GC, and breakaways will be going from all sides because that stage exactly the right sort of terrain to go for it.” Rodriguez, for one, is a fan of the time bonuses that will once again feature at the end of each Vuelta stage. “They make you want to attack because you know that there’s a big difference between finishing third or finishing fourth, even if the first place is out of reach.”  As for the final mountain top stage at Ermita del Alba on stage 16, the second straight stage in the Asturias region, “it’ll be another really difficult finish. We know the area well from many previous Vueltas, but we’ll have to go and check out that climb” - just seven kilometres long, but said to be very hard throughout. Rodriguez was adamant, too, that the final three stages in the sierras north and west of Madrid “can change things around,” despite there not being a summit finish like the region’s Bola del Mundo climb, where Vincenzo Nibali sealed his overall victory in 2010 just 24 hours before the race ended. “They are the kind of mountain stages that the fans really like, and when everybody’s starting to feel on the limit after three weeks of racing. Something always happens there, there are always surprises.” Overall, Rodriguez argues, “it’s a Vuelta route where you have to be in good shape from the beginning to the end, you can’t start trying to pick up form during the race itself. The last week doesn’t seem so hard, but by that point, everybody’s feeling tired”. Rodriguez knows what he is talking about, too; in 2010 he lost the Vuelta with a disastrous performance in the final week’s long, flat time trial at Peñafiel, just like the one in Burgos in 2015. Then in 2012, an attack by Alberto Contador on the road to Fuente De came at a point in the third week where Purito seemed all but certain to win. Instead, Contador was able to net his second Vuelta overall victory just when it was least expected. More...
Movistar unveils team with Quintana, Valverde leaders (The Associated Press)
January 09, 2015 (20:15) [ Indexed from Yahoo! Sports ]
MADRID (AP) -- Movistar unveiled its cycling team with leading duo Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde being joined by four new riders. More...
Movistar unveils team with Quintana, Valverde leaders (The Associated Press)
January 09, 2015 (19:45) [ Indexed from Yahoo! Sports ]
MADRID (AP) -- Movistar unveiled its cycling team with leading duo Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde being joined by four new riders. More...
Movistar unveils team with Quintana, Valverde leaders
January 09, 2015 (17:30) [ Indexed from New Zealand Herald ]
MADRID (AP) " Movistar unveiled its cycling team with leading duo Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde being joined by four new riders.At a ceremony in Madrid on Friday, the team said Marc Soler, Ruben Fernandez, Winner Anacona... More...
Contador, Rodriguez and Valverde head Volta a Catalunya line-up
December 18, 2014 (22:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Catalan WorldTour race will feature more but smaller climbs to avoid bad weather More...
Quintana, Valverde to ride Tour and Vuelta
November 21, 2014 (21:15) [ Indexed from New Zealand Herald ]
MADRID (AP) " The Movistar cycling team says leading duo Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde will compete in both the Tour de France and Spanish Vuelta next year.Movistar team director Eusebio Unzue says "each one is willing to... More...
News shorts: Quintana and Valverde to join forces at 2015 Tour and Vuelta
November 21, 2014 (18:45) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Reus to Verandas Willems, Gasparotto heads to Wanty, Revolution Series heads to Manchester More...
Valverde, Movistar and Spain receive WorldTour trophies
November 17, 2014 (15:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Cookson presents trophies in Madrid ceremony More...
Contador must fend off Valverde for WorldTour overall
October 02, 2014 (22:15) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
WorldTour ranking comes down to the wire in Il Lombardia, Tour of Beijing More...
Worlds: Rodriguez puts past behind him and allies with Valverde
September 29, 2014 (14:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Attacks to soften up opposition for Valverde More...
Valverde takes sixth medal in World Championships
September 28, 2014 (23:30) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Repeat of 2013 bronze for Spanish veteran More...
Worlds: Valverde cant rule out changes in Spains tactics
September 25, 2014 (21:15) [ Indexed from Cyclingnews.com ]
Rodriguez ideal substitute if needed More...

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