Veteran Spanish rider Iñigo Cuesta has revealed that he is considering delaying his retirement assuming he can find a team that will offer him a contract for the 2011 season. Now 41, the Cervélo rider had previously said that his 17-year pro career would end this season, but now believes he has the form and motivation to continue.
Cuesta, who has ridden in a record 17 editions of the Vuelta a España since turning pro in 1994, now has his sights on an 18th appearance in his national tour. “I was feeling in good shape at the end of the season,” he told Biciciclismo. “I would like to go on for another year and then call it a day at the Vuelta a España.”
Cuesta has not yet secured a deal for the 2011 season, but hopes that his past record and impressive 26th place finish in September’s Vuelta will tempt someone into offering him a one-year contract. “As things stand I’ve got nothing fixed up. But there still might be something. It’s difficult because it has to be something that I’m keen to do and that motivates me. I’m going to look around for a little while,” he explained.
Cuesta added that if he does not receive an offer that provides him with the necessary motivation, he will retire at the end of this year. “If nothing works out then I won’t continue and that will be the end of it. At the start of this year I was set on retiring this season, I said that this would be my last year.”
The Spaniard said that he has returned to his long-standing training regime after taking a break at the end of the season. “I will be training as if I am going to be carrying on. I want to be professional right to the right last moment,” explained Cuesta, who has also made seven Tour de France and three Giro d’Italia appearances in addition to those 17 Vuelta starts.
Peter Cossins has written about professional cycling since 1993 and is a contributing editor to Procycling. He is the author of The Monuments: The Grit and the Glory of Cycling's Greatest One-Day Races (Bloomsbury, March 2014) and has translated Christophe Bassons' autobiography, A Clean Break (Bloomsbury, July 2014).
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