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Quintana still uncertain for Giro d'Italia start

By:
Peter Hymas
Published:
January 18, 17:55,
Updated:
January 21, 15:08
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Sunday, January 19, 2014
Nairo Quintana will target the Tour de France but was out in Milan

Nairo Quintana will target the Tour de France but was out in Milan

  • Nairo Quintana will target the Tour de France but was out in Milan
  • Nairo Quintana with his award
  • Nairo Quintana (Movistar)

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Decision possible by end of Tour de San Luis

While it had been reported that Nairo Quintana (Movistar) would opt for a Grand Tour double in 2014 beginning with the Giro d'Italia and later including the Vuelta a España, at this morning's pre-event press conference at the Tour de San Luis he stated that his start in Italy has yet to be confirmed.

"There is a possibility to race at the Giro d'Italia but I don't know yet, the bosses haven't said anything yet," said Quintana. "I'm fine and I'm preparing myself as best I can for a great season. I hope that I will know this week."

The 23-year-old Colombian is one of many WorldTour stars who've chosen to begin their 2014 campaign in Argentina at the seven-day, UCI 2.1 rated Tour de San Luis. Quintana makes his Tour de San Luis debut in the race's eighth edition, with his Movistar squad among the 12 WorldTour teams making up half the event's peloton.

Quintana's 2014 season is eagerly anticipated after his spectacular run of results last year, his second year with the Movistar squad. Quintana placed 2nd overall in his Tour de France debut, including a stage win on the penultimate day, and the mountains and best young rider jerseys. He also earned GC wins at the Vuelta al Pais Vasco and Vuelta a Burgos.

The Tour de San Luis features three mountain finishes, Quintana's preferred terrain, but like his fellow overall hopefuls Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) and Joaquim Rodríguez (Katusha), also participants in the pre-race press conference, his aspirations in Argentina two days prior to the opening stage remain modest.
 

HeadPack 8 months ago
Is that tactics, or is there something going on with their sponsor? With Valverde at the Tour they will be nowhere, but it's the race with the most media coverage, hence value for a sponsor. Hope they keep his young age in mind and let him develop without burning him out. Doing the Giro, as sole team leader seems like the right thing to do. He can then recover for the Vuelta. Something like Giro+Tour or Tour+Vuelta could be too hard, I think.
Mark Schwitau 8 months ago
Valverde was consistent and podiumed all year long. He can do many different things quite well. I'm not sure "nowhere" is a good description. In the TdF the guy lost 8 minutes in one day and still fought back to a nice top 10. That shows some heart.
HeadPack 8 months ago
Ok, "nowhere" might not have been the right choice of words. Even so, Quintana draws a whole lot more media coverage than Valverde, and that is what I meant to say related to media coverage. Valverde is a great rider, no question about that, but the days when he brought something new to the table seem to be over.
Dan Vella 8 months ago
Not sure that is so (media attention) - Spain is the market they are after so, having Valverde as the marquee rider in the tour might make more business sense.
Cance > TheRest 7 months ago
Don't forget Valverde is a much bigger star than Quintana. He's not that far behind Quintana when it comes to pure climbing and he does have a better TT. I'm pretty sure Valverde is going to do just as good in the TdF this year as Quintana could've done.
nowhereman 8 months ago
The Spanish strategy is old and stifling to any "potential" stars.Unfortunately they seem to have an overly nationalistic point of view that hurts some of their riders. Rodriguez fled from that nonsense and so did Contador joining a Russian team and an American team respectively. Meanwhile, All the Spanish teams that Valverde was on kept him out of the TdF too long, and they are going to stifle this Quintana, in Valverde's shadow, when Valverde does not have a chance of winning the TdF. Quintana showed he has what it takes to win a Grand Tour yet his bosses haven't drawn up a season long program for him at this late date. I've really liked Valverde, but I have seen his heyday talents squandered, and I feel it would be tragic to see the same happen to Quintana.
vassosa 8 months ago
Is it possible that a spanish team never had a non-spanish leader? I believe ONCE had Jalabert as their leader, but for a small period of time. Maybe you are right about this "overly nationalistic point of view".
antmills 8 months ago
Hmmmm! ..... Valverde? ..... I don't think so!
Anonymous 8 months ago
please decide fast! i need to choose giro winner for zwelar fantasy game...
Manuel Schoel 8 months ago
Should Quintana opt to not partake the Giro, Uran will win it with no doubt!
kevinzamora 8 months ago
Ruling out Purito, Porte, Evans, etc.??
Ripper 8 months ago
Oh good grief. I realize Valverde is a marketing vehicle in Spain, but the guy is not going to win le Tour, and I find it unlikely he would podium. He is good, he is "up there" lots, but he is not going to be on the top steps. I would rather Quintana for the TdF and Valverde for la Vuelta.
rider1000 7 months ago
They're playing it smart. Quintana is still young, and would be up against a huge challenge at the TDF with Froome, Nibali, etc... At the Giro/Vuelta, he could be in top form and capable of winning his first GT. Which would be a huge confidence boost, along with good experience for an assault on the Tour in the coming years.
Kolombia 8 months ago
A 56 km time trial is too long for Quintana, he'd lose time he wouldn't be able to make in the mountains. That's why they're grooming him for the TdF. Unless, unless, Valverde has a poor early season showing, then Moviestar will send Quintana. So they're holding the Quintana card in their hands. Quintana of course knows that, and is playing the game.
movingtarget 8 months ago
Really ? Tomorrow's press release will be different again ? I was never convinced he would ride the Giro. Either way he will liven up the race. It sounds like Quintana prefers the Giro but the team owners want him in the Tour.
vassosa 8 months ago
I see that issue the other way around: Quintana said he is "destined" to win the Tour. Never said anthing about the Giro. The team come and says: We prefer to ride the Tour with a spanish leader, and we will send you to the Giro. He hears that and doesn't agree, in this way, delays the announcement to the press while still fighting "behind the courtains".
azureskies 8 months ago
Quintana is frightened ot the old lions in the Giro, Basso, Evens, Bob Millar, but especially Hornertag. Some dynamic AARP riders, it could ruin Nario forever trying to keep up with Horner this year in the Giro.
Cance > TheRest 7 months ago
Horner riding the giro? you must be trolling as the situation is right now
bikebandit 8 months ago
This Quintana dude gets a lot of press for some reason. Just think if he had actually won a grand tour.
rider1000 7 months ago
The dude isn't even 24 yet. He finished 2nd to an incredible Froome in the TDF. He deserves all the press he gets.
MathewR 7 months ago
what were you watching last year?
mortailcoil 7 months ago
Quintana looks like a Business Man. [Weight put on]