Movistar Team taking a conservative approach to season debut Down Under
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Saturday, January 14, 2012

Movistar Team taking a conservative approach to season debut Down Under

by Xylon van Eyck at 5:54 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour Down Under
Valverde feeling good on the bike but not making any predictions just yet

Alejandro ValverdeTeam Movistar will be in the spotlight when the Tour Down Under kicks off as the high profile Alejandro Valverde returns to racing after a two year ban. According the Sport Director José Luis Arrieta, apart from a sore throat for Jose Joaquin Rojas, the team is in good spirits. He won’t however make any predictions as to how the race will go.

“We arrived here on Wednesday, and after eating and then assembling our bikes, we did two and a half hours of training. We did three and a half on Thursday and four and a half yesterday,” Arrieta said.

“We took advantage of the spare time to look at the finishes of Wednesday and Saturday, the two ones [which might] be decisive, but we didn't pull on the gas too much because, even though all of them are feeling well, the adaptation and the time change are still there."

There’s been a lot of anticipation surrounding Valverde’s return and the level he will comeback at. During his ban he was reportedly training regularly with Movistar riders and did a lot of race simulation work. It is still unknown however, how he will fare come race day.

“All riders could train properly at home and are in good form. Above all, they're really willing to get this started, especially Alejandro, who is doing really well. The sensations are good but you can't make any bets at the beginning of the season.

“With so many sprinters contesting for victory on Sunday, we won't be taking more risks than necessary, and from Tuesday, we'll see what we can do. The hilltop finish on Saturday seems to open the race for different riders, but it's not a steep climb and the bonus seconds gathered by the sprinters might not make it decisive.”


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