Carlos Barredo finished his first full season on the team of his dreams – Quick.Step-Innergetic. The 26 year-old, who has aspirations to specialize in the classics, says that 2007 gave him a taste of the action amongst the specialty's best. Cyclingnews' Gregor Brown reflected with the Spaniard about his first season with the Belgian squad and asked Barredo to look ahead to 2008:
Carlos Barredo was in a difficult position when Cyclingnews last spoke with him at Quick.Step-Innergetic's team camp in Marina di Bibbona, in late 2006. The Spaniard was getting to know his new Quick.Step team-mates but was in the unique position of not being entirely sure what would come of his existing contract with Manolo Saiz's now-defunct Liberty Seguros squad. As the week of training pressed on, the rider from Asturias warmed to his new team-mates and most importantly received a call from his former boss giving him the all clear to kit-up in his new Belgian squad's blue colours in 2007.
"Yeah, back then I had two contracts, one with Liberty and one with Patrick [Lefevere]," recalled Barredo in the lobby of Stuttgart's Hilton Garden Inn just after finishing his lunch. "So much has changed. This is a team that works completely for the one-day races, whereas the team [Liberty] last year was one that worked and trained for stage races."
Quick.Step was structured around one-day specialist Tom Boonen and dual World Champion Paolo Bettini. "This year has been important because I have progressed a lot," he explained. "I was able to ride the Classics well in the spring, and also, for me, a good Tour [de France] working for Tom. Afterwards, the San Sebastián went well and then the Vuelta [a España]. I think that this year I was able to have three good peaks with good form, it was difficult but I did it and now I am very content."
Read the entire Carlos Barredo interview here.