Movistar have firmed up their roster for 2019, handing contract extensions to Andrey Amador, Daniele Bennati, and Imanol Erviti. The trio, described as "part of the spine of the team," have all put pen to paper on new one-year deals.
Amador, Bennati, and Erviti are all over 30 and have become some of the most trusted domestiques at the Spanish team. All three are currently supporting Nairo Quintana at the Vuelta a España, having also ridden the Tour de France in July for the Colombian and co-leader Mikel Landa.
Amador, 31, has spent his whole professional career with Eusebio Unzué's team, having joined in 2009 when they were known as Caisse d'Epargne. He has ridden the Tour de France four times but the Giro d'Italia has been his happiest hunting ground. He claimed his first pro victory with a stage win in the 2012 edition, helped Quintana to overall victory in 2014, and finished in the top 10 himself in 2015 and 2016. This year he has won the Klasika Primavera de Amorebieta as well as assisting the team's chief Grand Tour ambitions.
"How could it be anything other than a privilege to work for this team! Very happy to continue, tomorrow we go for more," Amador wrote on Twitter.
Erviti, 34, has also been with Unzué his entire career, joining back in 2005. In a team that has traditionally been weighted towards climbers and stage racers, the Spaniard has led the team in the Classics as well as providing horsepower on the flatter, windier Grand Tour stages.
He is a veteran of 21 Grand Tours, usually doing the Tour de France and Vuelta a España double, and won stages in the 2008 and 2010 Vueltas. His highlight as a Classics rider came in 2016 when he finished top 10 in both the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.
Bennati is a relative newcomer to Movistar, having joined in 2017 after stints at Tinkoff, Leopard-Trek, Liquigas, Lampre, Phonak, Aqua & Sapone, and Mapei. Thanks to his extensive experience, though, with nearly 18 seasons, 25 Grand Tours, and more than 50 victories to his name, the Italian has quickly established himself as a road captain.
It had been rumoured that Bennati would leave the team at the end of this season, but he will continue until at least the end of the 2019 season, by which point he will be 39 years old.
"Proud and honored to continue in 2019 with Movistar Team," Bennati wrote on Twitter.
The trio are the latest contract extensions for Movistar, after young talent Marc Soler renewed earlier this month. The team have also signed Jurgen Roelandts from Lotto Soudal and Carols Verona from Mitchelton-Scott.