While a possible deal with 2006 Tour de France winner Oscar Pereiro still remains to be nailed down, the Spanish pro continental Xacobeo team have announced the signing of World Under-23 time trial runner-up Nelson Oliveira. The 20-year-old Portuguese rider finished 18 seconds down on another 20-year-old in Mendrisio in September, Australia’s Jack Bobridge.
Regarded as one of the best young rider to come out of Portugal for some years, Oliveira spent the 2009 season with the Cidade de Lugo-Artesanía de Galicia team, which is based in the same north-western region of Spain as Alvaro Pino’s Xacobeo squad.
Viewed as a strong all-rounder but especially powerful in time trials, Oliveira claimed the Portuguese junior time trial crown in 2007 and the Under-23 version earlier this year.
The signing takes Xacobeo’s roster to 15 riders. Oliveira is the second of these to have come from the Cidade de Lugo team, after the earlier signing of Gustavo Rodríguez. Surprisingly, given Xacobeo’s home region having such close links with Portugal, Oliveira is the first Portuguese rider to join Pino’s team in its three-year-history.
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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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