Nairo Quintana (Movistar) will swap coaches next season in an attempt to revive his chances at the Tour de France. Quintana has been on the podium at the Grand Boucle three times but has slipped down the standings in recent seasons.
"This year, I have changed trainers, to see if we go much better and we arrive at the Tour de France to do it better," Quintana said according to Argentinian website Ciclismo Internacional.
Quintana has been training with Movistar coach Mikel Zabala, who has previously worked with the Spanish national team. Instead, Quintana will start working with incoming directeur sportive Max Sciandri. The British-Italian joins the Movistar set-up after eight seasons with BMC Racing.
Sciandri rode as a professional between 1989 and 2004, competing with teams such as Motorola, Francaise des Jeuz, Lampre and Team CSC. He won the 1992 Tour of Britain and has won three stages of the Giro d’Italia as well as a stage of the Tour de France.
Quintana has been with Movistar since 2012 and soon made an impression in the Grand Tours with second overall and the mountains classification in his debut Tour de France the following year. He has won two Grand Tours, the 2014 Giro d’Italia and the 2016 Vuelta a España.
Last season, he attempted the Giro-Tour double but came away with second at the Giro d'Italia and 12th at the Tour de France. He finished 10th at this year’s Tour, where the team started with three leaders, before going to the Vuelta where he took eighth overall.
There has been some tension between Quintana and the team, and last year the Colombian's father said that Movistar were burning out the 28-year-old. There were rumours that Quintana might leave the Spanish outfit, despite him having another year to run on his contract. Those rumours were later denied and Quintana will race with the team in 2019, alongside Mikel Landa and new world champion Alejandro Valverde.
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