Report Card: Movistar Team

The return of Alejandro Valverde to racing in 2012 with Movistar saw Spain's top WorldTour team expected to lift their game considerably - and they duly did. Seven more wins than in 2011, where the team was battered by injuries and its collective morale hit by the death of Xavi Tondo, is only one facet of Movistar's overall improvement. Highlight performances included the Tour de Suisse overall for Rui Costa, Valverde's gutsy second place and a stunning opening team time trial triumph in the Vuelta a España - all signs that Movistar was dialling many of the right numbers in 2012.

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Alasdair Fotheringham

Alasdair Fotheringham has been reporting on cycling since 1991. He has covered every Tour de France since 1992 bar one, as well as numerous other bike races of all shapes and sizes, ranging from the Olympic Games in 2008 to the now sadly defunct Subida a Urkiola hill climb in Spain. As well as working for Cyclingnews, he has also written for The IndependentThe GuardianProCycling, The Express and Reuters.