dinsdag 27 januari 2009

Our olympic champion Samuel Sanchez gave an interview to the Estrella digital and of course I tried to translate for you in English.

Has that Olympic medal changed your life?
I can now do things that I have never done before and my life has changed a lot, but my personality hasn't changed a bit.
You tattooed the Olympic rings on your body, what would you tattoo if you win the Tour de France?
The Olympic tattoo was just a bet with my friend Juan Llaneras. I think I won't tattoo anything, but I believe that you always have to live up to your promises.
What are your goals for this season?
I want to be good in the first part of the season and then I can start to train for the Vuelta and the World Championships.
This winter you have been able to train in a wind tunnel in San Diego. Do you think Spain should invest more in these kinds of technology so more riders could use it to shine?
It would seriously be a good thing because it was a great opportunity for me!
Would you think about changing your career, like Valentino Rossi?
Since I was a child, I've always loved motorcycles, but I want to finish my life as a cyclist. I would love to ride on circuits with a motorcycle or a car but only as a hobby.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Spending time with my family and friends
Who are cyclists you can resemble with?
Laurent Jalabart and Alejandro Valverde.
Wich race do you like most?
Tour de France
Your best compagnon in the peloton?
Benjamin Noval
The best room mate in big tours?
Igor Anton
What's your great wish?
To win the World Championships or one of the three big rounds.
What's your biggest dream?
To be happy and healthy

zondag 25 januari 2009

Markel Irizar King of the Australian mountains

The last stage of the Tour Down Under was a 90 kilometres criterium on a small circuit in Adelaide. Of course this wasn't the parcours to expect big escapes, but Markel Irizar managed to stay in front for a while, taking some more points for the King of the Mountains jersey. Yesterday Andoni Lafuente was still the leader in this classification but at the end it was Markel who could show off the jersey. In the final sprint Iñaki took another top20 spot with an ok 17th place.

1. Francesco Chicchi Liquigas 1:42:00
2. Robbie McEwen Katusha ST
3. Graeme Brown Rabobank ST
17. Iñaki Isasi ST
46. Sergio De Lis ST
50. Markel Irizar ST
96. Pablo Urtasun +0:24
98. Josu Agirre +0:24
111. Andoni Lafuente +0:38
122. Aitor Hernandez +6:28

General Rank
1. Allan Davis Quick Step 19:26:59
2. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank +0:25
3. José Joaquin Rojas Caisse d'Epargne +0:30
18. Markel Irizar +0:46
59. Iñaki Isasi +24:27
85. Josu Agirre +36:59
109. Aitor Hernandez +50:59
118. Sergio De Lis +1:02:22
119. Pablo Urtasun +1:02:46
120. Andoni Lafuente +1:02:50

zaterdag 24 januari 2009

Quiet day for Euskaltel

In the penultimate stage of the Tour Down Under, the guys from Euskaltel took a day off. No one got in a break, they didn't try to get some points for the king of the mountains and they didn't mingle in the sprint. Luckily Andoni is still going strong in the mountains classification and is almost certain of the overall win.

1. Allan Davis Quick Step 3:28:33
2. José Joaquin Rojas Caisse d'Epargne ST
3. Martin Elmiger Ag2r ST
26. Markel Irizar ST
55. Iñaki Isasi +1:54
106. Sergio De Lis +13:10
112. Josu Agirre +13:10
114. Andoni Lafuente +13:10
115. Pablo Urtasun +13:10
118. Aitor Hernandez +13:10

General Rank
1. Allan Davis Quick Step 17:44:59
2. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank +0:25
3. José Joaquin Rojas Caisse d'Epargne +0:30
17. Markel Irizar +0:47
59. Iñaki Isasi +24:27
85. Josu Agirre +36:35
105. Aitor Hernandez +44:31
118. Andoni Lafuente +1:02:12
120. Sergio De Lis +1:02:22
121. Pablo Urtasun +1:02:22

vrijdag 23 januari 2009

Monotony in Australia

It was the same old same in the fourth stage of the Tour Down Under. There was a break with an Euskaltel rider in it, this time Andoni Lafuente. He of course attacked because he wanted to steal the mountains jersey from Markel Irizar. And so he did, he took 8 points on the only climb of the day and is back in his white jersey. Of course they were reeled back in with 20 kilometres to go. In the sprint the orange 'sprinters' weren't really motivated, Iñaki ended up on a 27th spot.

1. Allan Davis Quick Step 3:29:35
2. Graeme Brown Rabobank ST
3. José Joaquin Rojas Caisse d'Epargne ST
27. Iñaki Isasi ST
33. Markel Irizar ST
76. Josu Agirre +0:47
115. Sergio De Lis +8:43
116. Aitor Hernandez +8:43
117. Pablo Urtasun +8:43
118. Andoni Lafuente +8:43

General Classification
1. Allan Davis Quick Step 14:16:36
2. Graeme Brown Rabobank +0:04
3. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank +0:37
21. Markel Irizar +0:37
60. Iñaki Isasi +22:23
74. Josu Agirre +23:15
105. Aitor Hernandez +31:11
120. Andoni Lafuente +48:52
122. Sergio De Lis +49:02
123. Pablo Urtasun +49:02

donderdag 22 januari 2009

Euskaltel still showing off Down Under

Euskaltel is still going strong in the Tour Down Under. Today Markel Irizar, Aitor Hernandez and Iñaki Isasi all tried to get in the right break. At the end it was Markel Irizar who rode in front of the race together with big star Lance Armstrong. Just like the other days, the breakaway was doomed to fail and in the sprint Markel Irizar still managed to place himself 17th. He's also our best shot in the general rank AND he took over the mountains classification from Andoni Lafuente.

1. Graeme Brown Rabobank 3:15:35
2. Allan Davis Quick Step ST
3. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank ST
17. Markel Irizar ST
91. Sergio De Lis +21:49
95. Iñaki Isasi +21:49
96. Aitor Hernandez +21:49
103. Josu Agirre +21:49
115. Pablo Urtasun +21:49
116. Andoni Lafuente +21:49

General Rank
1. Allan Davis Quick Step 10:47:11
2. Graeme Brown Rabobank ST
3. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank +0:05
21. Markel Irizar +0:27
61. Iñaki Isasi +22:13
75. Josu Agirre +22:18
76. Aitor Hernandez +22:18
115. Andoni Lafuente +40:05
119. Sergio De Lis +40:09
120. Pablo Urtasun +40:09

woensdag 21 januari 2009

Markel & Andoni colour Australia orange

For the second day in a row one of the Euskaltel guys was in the front of the race. Markel Irizar escaped together with Aaron Kemps and Guillaume Blot with only 6 kilometres racing. The only obstacle of the day was a first category mountain and Markel took 16 points there. Also Andoni Lafuente, the king of the mountains, took 6 points and is now leading strong with 38 points. With 22 kilometres to go the break was put to an end and the sprint was prepared. This time Iñaki Isasi became 24th. He's also our best man in the general rank on a 20th place.

1. Allan Davis Quick-Step 3:46:25
2. Graeme Brown Rabobank ST
3. Martin Elmiger Ag2r +0:02
24. Iñaki Isasi +0:08
34. Markel Irizar +0:13
48. Aitor Hernandez +0:13
66. Josu Agirre +0:13
127. Andoni Lafuente +18:04
130. Sergio De Lis +18:04
131. Pablo Urtasun +18:04

General Rank
1. Allan Davis Quick-Step 7:31:42
2. André Greipel Team Columbia +0:03
3. Graeme Brown Rabobank +0:04
20. Iñaki Isasi +0:18
27. Markel Irizar +0:21
54. Josu Agirre +0:23
56. Aitor Hernandez +0:23
122. Andoni Lafuente +18:10
127. Pablo Urtasun +18:14
129. Sergio De Lis +18:14

dinsdag 20 januari 2009

Andoni king of the mountains in Australia

Although it was said that Andoni experienced some troubles because of a blister on the ball of his feet, he showed his orange jersey immediately during the first race of the season. Certain to make a great year of 2009, he got in the right break together with Olivier Kaisen. The two split the prizes, Andoni took the mountain points and became king of the mountains, Olivier the sprints. With some 30 kilometres to go the two were reeled back in and everything was set up for the sprint. In that sprint Iñaki Isasi placed himself just like sunday 16th. Due to his strong attack Andoni is now 5th overall and maybe he has a chance of taking that mountains classification home.

1. André Greipel Team Columbia 3:45:27
2. Baden Cooke UniSA ST
3. Stuart O'Grady Team Saxo Bank ST
16. Iñaki Isasi ST
20. Markel Irizar ST
76. Josu Agirre ST
83. Andoni Lafuente ST
89. Aitor Hernandez ST
90. Pablo Urtasun ST
94. Sergio De Lis ST

General Rank
1. André Greipel Team Columbia 3:45:16
2. Baden Cooke UniSA +0:05
3. Olivier Kaisen Silence - Lotto +0:05
5. Andoni Lafuente +0:07
19. Iñaki Isasi +0:11
23. Markel Irizar +0:11
78. Josu Agirre +0:11
89. Aitor Hernandez +0:11
90. Pablo Urtasun +0:11
94. Sergio De Lis +0:11

zondag 18 januari 2009

Euskaltel keeps it cool in Cancer Council Classic

Today the unofficial criterium of the Tour Down Under, the Cancer Council Classic, was on schedule for Euskaltel. It seemed like the orange boys still had to get used to the weather because they didn't feature in the race. At the end it came down to the predicted sprint. Iñaki Isasi tried to mingle in the fight, but once again it showed that he didn't have the top speed anymore, he became 16th.

1. Robbie McEwen Team Katusha 1:04:32
2. Wim Stroetinga Team Milram ST
3. Graeme Brown Rabobank ST
16. Iñaki Isasi +0:02
21. Markel Irizar +0:06
36. Josu Agirre +0:09
40. Pablo Urtasun +0:11
86. Aitor Hernandez +0:25
92. Sergio De Lis +0:27
100. Andoni Lafuente +0:28

woensdag 14 januari 2009

Interview with newbie Mikel Nieve

What will be the biggest change now you ride for a professional team?
The races I will now participate in will be of top level and I hope I can improve in them little by little. It's obvious that I will have to help the leaders of the equipment during the races and for that I will give all.

What do you like about Euskaltel-Euskadi?
I love the image of the team. Although they don't win a lot of races, they keep fighting for every race. More can't be asked.

You're now in a position to dream of, so which big race would you like to ride?
I would love to participate in the Tour of the Basque Country and even win a stage in it because that race really lives among the people there. Of course this is just a dream.

How did you get in the world of cycling?
I started to ride when I was ten in my school and then I went to the local cycling club. Next I rode for Caja Rural and so I got a contract with Orbea.

What kind of cyclist is Mikel Nieve?
I feel best in the ascents, but I know I still have to improve a lot.

And who are your idols in cycling?
My great idol has always been Miguel Indurain, not only because he's from my 'country', but just because he's such an inspiration and the reason I started to cycle. There are a lot of good riders in my team at the moment, but if I had to relate to one rider it would be Contador.

Source: Biciciclismo

donderdag 8 januari 2009

Samuel Sanchez OK

After tests in Oviedo and Vitoria, it turned out that Samuel Sanchez has a serious injury at his left knee but it isn't something too horrifying. The accident happened just before Paris-Tours in Samu's garage and he has been suffering from it since then. It didn't keep him from training but he had to take it easy. Samuel will be treated in Oviedo but is optimistic for the future and is confident being good at his first goal, the Tour of the Basque Country.

zondag 4 januari 2009

Samsan injured

Samuel Sanchez won't be able to start the season in the Mallorca Challenge as was planned. After a small incident at home, he has been experiencing some problems in his knee and hasn't been able to do some decent condition training. Tomorrow he will go to the hospital and get some eximantions done. Hopefully it won't be too bad so he can get in shape really quick so he doesn't jeopardise his season.

donderdag 1 januari 2009

Euskaltel with Koldo & Egoi to Algarve

Euskaltel will send a strong sprint orientated team to the Volta Algarve from 18 till 22 February. With Koldo Fernández, Iñaki Isasi, Alan Pérez, Rubén Pérez, Aitor Hernández, Markel Irizar and Pablo Urtasun a nice sprint train could be made. But with Egoi Martínez we also have someone that could go for a good classification.

Urte Berri On

Of course I wish all of you the best for 2009. May it be a year full of happiness, luck and success. This year I will try to maintain this blog and keep it up to date regularly. I also have some wishes for the next year about Euskaltel. Logically I want more wins and more people to win! It's really time that some guys step up and make us proud! I also want one of the guys strongly compete for a big tour, so I'm thinking of Samuel, Igor or Mikel. But most of all I want a year without injuries and trouble for Euskaltel! For Haimar, I hope that he will have a great year with his new team and that he doesn't stay in the shadows of Contador, Armstrong... the whole year!