Dani Moreno: “Although I got fewer wins than other seasons, I think it was the best”
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Friday, November 29, 2013

Dani Moreno: “Although I got fewer wins than other seasons, I think it was the best”

by Ben Atkins at 3:56 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Vuelta a España, Spring Classics, Flèche Wallonne
 
Katusha rider happy to work for teammate Rodríguez but aiming for the Ardennes and la Vuelta

dani morenoDani Moreno (Katusha) is looking back on the best season of his career to date, as he looks ahead to the 2014 season. The 32-year-old from Madrid has escaped the cold weather of Europe, however, since he has travelled to Argentina, where his wife hails from, and is able to prepare for the new year in summer weather.

"We came at around we end the season,” Moreno explained. “Here I can get the maximum hot weather and return to Spain as late as possible. But this year it will be earlier than other times; after riding the Tour de San Luis [between January 19th and 26th] I’ll travel to Spain to be with my teammates.”

Although he only took three wins in 2013, compared with seven in 2012, the quality of Moreno’s victories was a level up. The spring saw him emulate teammate Joaquim Rodríguez with a victory in la Flèche Wallonne, while the late summer saw him take two stages of the Vuelta a España - to take his career total to three - which also saw him wear the red jersey of race leader for a day, as well as hold the green points jersey for several stages.

“The truth is that although I got fewer wins than other seasons, I think it was the best,” Moreno reasoned. “The victory of la Flèche Wallonne was a great thing for me, and the two stages of the Vuelta a España were a dream. But I also remember last season with satisfaction, with seven wins, which is a lot and was difficult to achieve.”

Moreno finished 2013 in 12th place in the UCI WorldTour ranking, which was 39 places better than his placing in 2012. Much of this was due to his Flèche victory, but the 32-year-old definitely feels himself improving year on year.

"I think I can still grow a little more,” he said. “Every year I go up a step and this coming year should be a little more. I feel better every day on the big races, where I managed to finish better than before, and three week races.”

Much of Moreno’s fame has been gained as a super-domestique to the more successful Rodríguez, who won his third edition of the WorldTour this year. Despite steadily emerging from his teammate’s shadow, Moreno is content to ride in support of the Catalan, which is the origin of much of his own success.

"It’s not that I don’t have my own ambitions, but I'm really happy with my role as Purito’s lieutenant,” Moreno explained. “We make a good duo and we complement each other well. He achieves great victories and I can also get mine. And we both know it."

After enjoying a summer off-season, Moreno is beginning to hit his preparation for next year, where his targets will be the same as in 2013.

"October and November has been a time of rest and seeing the family,” he said. “This year we’ve travelled in the U.S. and Mexico, to see some of those countries. Now in December and January, taking advantage of the good weather here, I will train more seriously.

“For next season I have two main objectives: the Ardennes classics and the Vuelta a España, which is my favourite race," he concluded.

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