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Benat Intxausti (Movistar) wins stage 4 in Beijing
Movistar rider hoping to work on time trialling at San Luis
Beñat Intxausti [Movistar] will put aside some of his own personal ambitions this season when he rides the Tour de France in support of teammate Alejandro Valverde, but the Spaniard says he is not bothered by the adjustments to his calendar.
"The situation is clear. Valverde and Nairo Quintana are the leaders,” Intxausti told Diario Vasco. “I do not dislike the idea. I do not mind leaving the Giro and see how it goes my Tour.
“They [Valverde and Quintana] are rides to who can dispute the great events, in which you have to help them. When they are not, then you have your opportunities. This is to take advantage of. There are races for everyone."
In July he will ride as a domestique for Valverde, and Quintana - if he chooses to ride it. Intxausti has only ridden the Tour de France once before, but he abandoned on stage eight, which was won by his teammate Rui Costa, with a broken wrist.
For the past two years the Movistar rider has ridden the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España. However, neither are on his calendar for this year. Last season he wore the Giro’s maglia rosa for a stage, before taking his best grand tour result with eighth in the overall classification.
He closed the year with his first WorldTour victory at the Tour of Beijing, taking the overall victory as he did so. The Spaniard believes that there is still more to come in 2014. “Mentally I'm getting stronger, you see that there are goals that can be achieved, you can reach them,” he explains.
"I want to do better than in 2013 or at least try. I will go to the Tour instead of the Giro d' Italia. I do not mind the change but, before that, I will go to Paris-Nice, the Tour of the Basque Country and the Tour of Romandie."
Intxausti is currently competing at the Tour de San Luis, where Quintana is the overall leader. As his teammate looks towards victory, the 27-year-old is focusing a little further down the line. "I have come to Argentina to try and get a good basis for April," says Intxausti.
"I am trying to do things as best as I can and see how far I can go. I want to improve in time trials. Here in San Luis, I’ll see how I am with the time trial bike. Here, I’ll do a specific job for trial."