Unzué confirms: “No room at Movistar for Oscar Freire”
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Friday, October 14, 2011

Unzué confirms: “No room at Movistar for Oscar Freire”

by Ben Atkins at 4:14 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Still no team for three-time World champion as Spanish team recruits elsewhere

oscar freireOscar Freire will not be heading to Movistar next year, according to Spanish sports daily Marca. Gerneral manager Eusebio Unzué confirmed that, with the riders that the team is taking on, there is no room for the three-time World champion, who is leaving Rabobank after nine seasons with the Dutch team.

“The arrival of [Italian champion Giovanni] Visconti gives the team experience and will make us stronger in one-day races,” Unzué explained. “He is a class rider.

“With [Jonathan] Castroviejo, [Javier] Moreno and [Jose] Herrada we strengthen ourselves in depth,” he added. “Nairo Quintana is an important rider with a view to the future.”

As far as Freire is concerned though: “As things are now, it is impossible that he comes.”

While Unzué spoke of the arrival of Visconti, from Farnese Vini-Neri, Moreno and Herrada, from Caja Rural, and Quintana, from Colombia es Pasion-Café de Colombia, there was no mention of the rumoured return of Vladimir Karpets to the team. The tall Russian spent six years with Unzué’s team before leaving for Russian team Katusha in 2009, but was reported as returning to the team to recapture his former glory.

Also unconfirmed by Unzué is the expected return to the team of former prodigy Alejandro Valverde, whose suspended for his involvement with Eufemiano Fuentes, as uncovered in Operación Puerto, is due to end soon. The 31-year-old will be free to ride from January 1st next year, but Unzué is reluctant to comment on the matter.

“”You will be given the news on his signing when the time is right.”


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