Report: Luis Leon Sanchez won’t be part of Movistar in 2014
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Friday, November 1, 2013

Report: Luis Leon Sanchez won’t be part of Movistar in 2014

by VeloNation Press at 2:57 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Spanish team completes lineup with 27 riders, including Valverde and Quintana

Luis Leon SanchezRumoured a fortnight ago to be on the way to the Movistar squad, the anticipated move of Luis Leon Sanchez to the team now looks like it won’t happen. Spanish website Biciciclismo states that the team has fixed its final lineup for 2014 at 27 riders, and that Sanchez is not included.

Last month the 29 year old was said to have been released by his Belkin Pro Cycling team and given a payoff due to the early cessation of his contract.

Both El Perodico and El Pais suggested then that the rider would head to Movistar in 2014, joining other big Spanish names such as Alejandro Valverde.

However this was played down at the time by general manager Eusebio Unzué, who told Biciciclismo that there has been contact but nothing has been finalized. He has said that the team has 24 confirmed riders at this point, and will draw the line at 25 or 26 in total.

According to Biciciclismo today, the final lineup will comprise 27 riders. Those returning are team leaders Alejandro Valverde and Tour de France runner-up Nairo Quintana plus Andrey Amador, Jonathan Castroviejo, Alex Dowsett, Eros Capecchi, Javi Moreno, Sylwester Szmyd, Imanol Erviti, Iván Gutiérrez, José and Jesús Herrada, Beñat Intxausti, Pablo Lastras, Rubén Plaza, José Joaquín Rojas, Enrique Sanz, Francisco Ventoso and Giovanni Visconti.

The new signings are John Gadret (Ag2r La Mondiale), Ion and Gorka Izagirre (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Juanjo Lobato (Euskaltel-Euskadi), Adriano Malori (Lampre-Merida), Alejandro Marque (OFM), Dayer Quintana (Lizarte) and Jasha Sütterlin (Thuringer).

There are six riders who are leaving, namely former Vuelta winner Juan Jose Cobo, world champion Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida), Vladimir Karpets, Ángel Madrazo (Caja Rural-RGA), Argiro Ospina and Eloy Teruel (Jamis).

Sanchez is a strong rider, but also one with a complicated past. His results include four stages in the Tour de France, as well as multiple national time trial championships. He won the Clásica San Sebastian in 2010 and 2012, and also took the Tour Down Under in 2005 and Paris-Nice in 2009.

In addition to those, he has tenth place overall finishes in the Tour de France and Vuelta a España.

However he has been implicated in the Operacion Puerto and Operacion Galgo investigations, raising a question mark about some of those past achievements.

Sanchez denies involvement in any past doping, but was sidelined earlier this year by the Belkin team, then known as Blanco Pro Cycling.

It was then forced to allow him to return after he lodged a complaint with the UCI, stating on May 8th that he would once again be selected for races.

He took stage five in the Tour of Belgium, his comeback race, then placed second in the Spanish national time trial championships and third in the road race. In August he won a stage and placed second overall in the Tour de l’Ain.

It is unclear if he has a contract for next season, or if he will be forced to take a year out.


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