Quintana leads Movistar in the Basque Country
The GP Miguel Indurain (Saturday 2), on home turf for Eusebio Unzué’s squad; the Vuelta a La Rioja and the Ronde van Vlaanderen, on Sunday 3; and the Vuelta al País Vasco will all start a month of April packed with competitions for the Movistar Team, which will bring two of its main references for stageraces to Monday’s start of the Itzulia in Etxebarria: Nairo Quintana and Ion Izagirre.
The Colombian, big winner of the Volta a Catalunya last week, and the Basque allrounder, third-placed in the race last season and 5th overall in Paris-Nice, will be joined in the Basque Country by Winner Anacona, Dani Moreno, Rory Sutherland, Jesús Herrada, Gorka Izagirre and Giovanni Visconti. José Luis Arrieta and José Luis Jaimerena will act as Movistar Team sports directors into a course with no respite: more than 40 categorized climbs, mountain-top finishes in Garrastatxu (Tuesday 5) and Arrate (Friday 8) plus a 16km decisive ITT in Eibar, on Saturday 9.
Nairo Quintana will be back into racing already this Saturday in Estella, in company of Jesús Herrada, the Izagirre brothers, Dani Moreno, Visconti, Carlos Betancur and Antonio Pedrero. A day later, in La Rioja, Visconti and Jesús Herrada will be the telefónica squad’s main chances; Betancur, Soler, Sutherland, Anacona, Javi Moreno and Pedrero complete the team.
Finally, the Movistar Team will be lining up for the second Monument of the classics season, the Ronde van Vlaanderen on Sunday, with an eight-man group directed by Chente García Acosta which hopes to find all fortune they didn’t have last week during their three opening courses over pavé. Andrey Amador, Nelson Oliveira and Fran Ventoso will be the biggest names of a roster also featuring Jasha Sütterlin, Imanol Erviti, Juanjo Lobato, Dayer Quintana and Jorge Arcas.