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The teams selection for the Tour of Spain 2014 announced: MTN-Qhubeka finally has its Grand Tour!

Added: wednesday 02 April 2014 at 23:16:00
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    The teams selection for the Tour of Spain 2014 announced: MTN-Qhubeka finally has its Grand Tour!After having seen the wildcards for the Giro d'Italia being attributed to other teams and since they were not really able to get an invitation for the Tour de France 2014, the African team finally sees its dream become true with its participation in a Grand Tour this year: the Tour of Spain 2014, or Vuelta a España as they say in Spain.

    Indeed, today the selection of the teams was anounced by the organisor of the race* and MTN-Qhubeka is one of the 4 teams in addition to the 18 UCI ProTeams which have a guaranteed entry in all UCI WorldTour races.

    The 18 UCI ProTeams

    The 18 UCI ProTeams are present in all UCI WorldTour races and there was thus no doubt about their participation in the Vuelta a España 2014:

    France AG2R La MondialeSpain Movistar Team
    Kazakhstan Astana Pro TeamBelgium Omega Pharma-QuickStep Cycling Team
    The Netherlands Belkin Pro Cycling TeamAustralia Orica-GreenEDGE
    United States BMC Racing TeamFrance Team Europcar
    Italy CannondaleThe Netherlands Team Giant-Shimano
    France FDJ.frRussia Team Katusha
    United States Garmin-SharpGreat-Britain Team Sky
    Italy Lampre-MeridaDenmark Tinkoff-Saxo
    Belgium Lotto-BelisolUnited States Trek Factory Racing

    The invited teams ...

    4 other teams will be present at the start of the 69th edition of the Vuelta a España 2014 in Jerez de la Frontera on 23 August 2014 for a race which will bring them to Santiago de Compostela on 14 September (see the article The Tour of Spain 2014: the riders on the road to Santiago de Compostela for more information about the race route).
    • Caja Rural-Seguros RGASpain The first invitation was for a Spanish team, Caja Rural-Seguros RGA, which will be present for the 3rd time in row in the Tour of Spain.

      Juanma Hernández, the director of the team, was clearly happy with the invitation and declared: In the name of Caja Rural-Seguros RGA I would like to thank Unipublic, the organisor of the Vuelta, for the faith they put in us once again. For the team and its sponsors it's very important to be in the Vuelta a España and this allows the team to develop further every year. We keep very good memories of the two previous years. We can only thank the organisor for the invitation and its continuing faith in us and we'll do our best to show that we deserved this invitation.
    • France The Cofidis, solutions crédits team will participate for the 17th time (14th time in row since 2001) in the Vuelta a España and while the team from the north of France did publish a Tweet about the selection for the Tour de France 2014 it apparently was so much expecting to be invited for the Tour of Spain 2014 that it doesn't talk about it at all!
    • IAM CyclingSwitzerland The Swiss IAM Cycling team, which already got an invitation for the Tour de France 2014, will finally participate in two Grand Tours this year.

      Michel Thétaz, the founder of IAM (Independent Asset Management), and a big cycling fan and also founder of this cycling team, again showed he was very happy with this invitation: This is very good news that will allow us to complete our mission of growth for this year.

      In fact, we started the year with the definite objective of participating in two Grand Tours.

      Even if we did not receive the invitation to ride in the Giro, the confirmation to ride the Tour de France was a great gift.

      And now this invitation to the Vuelta is an honor as much as a joy, since it recognizes the work of the entire team, riders, support staff and management.

      And for the sponsor, there will be great visibility, which is not the least of the goals.

      Early this year, we made contact with Unipublic and forged close associations, which in the end helped us.

      But overall, it has been our strong performances in races like Tirreno-Adriatico and Critérium International that sealed the deal.
    • MTN-QhubekaSouth-Africa The MTN-Qhubeka team of which you can regularly read some news thanks to the nutrition specialist Rob Child (see the MTN-Qhubeka section of the site) is the last team to be invited to the Spanish Grand Tour this year.

      The team initially put all its hope on a selection for the Giro d'Italia 2014 but it didn't get that chance in the Italian race. It's thus easy to understand that Doug Ryder, the South-African team's principal, talks about a dream which becomes truth: It was always our dream and ambition to take an African registered team to the highest level in World Cycling, be that the biggest one day races, the Monuments, and the Grand Tours. To be accepted into the Vuelta is the beginning of the realisation of that dream. Our dream goes way beyond riding and performing well in these races, which is the enabler to bring thousands of people in communities in South Africa onto Qhubeka Buffalo bicycles to further their lives. MTN has supported this dream to move Africa forward and with millions of eyeballs focused on the team in the Vuelta this dream will start to become a reality.

    * Unipublic, now fully owned by A.S.O.

    by Thomas Vergouwen
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Currently 4 comments!
  1. Bonjour Thomas,

    merci pour l'article.
    Pour Cofidis, sa sélection tiens, si je ne m'abuse, à la présence du sponsor comme partenaire de l'épreuve, donc rien d'étonnant qu'ils ne communiquent même plus là-dessus.
    Par contre, a-t-elle sa place sur le Tour et la Vuelta ? Là est la question, puisqu'ils ne font aucun résultats, leurs leaders sont transparents...

    Caja Rural, rien d'étonnant
    Iam, c'est l'une des rares équipes Continentales Pro à avoir un effectif solide pour participer à plusieurs grands tours.
    MTN, avec Ciolek et Gerdemann, et des coureurs comme Teklehaymanot et Meintjes qui pourront se frotter à un niveau supérieur, ca pourrait être tout bénéfique.

    C'est un bon choix, sauf pour Cofidis donc.

    Bonne journée

    | Aurélien M. | thursday 03 April 2014 at 08:59:50

  2. Bonjour Aurélien,

    Il ne faut pas oublier que Cofidis a brillé sur la Vuelta, avec Moncoutié, Taaramaé et l'an dernier Nicolas Edet. Ce sont tout de même 5 victoires d'étape et 5 maillots de la montagne depuis 2008. Je pense qu'ils montrent aux organisateurs qu'ils respectent l'invitation reçue, qui plus est en animant souvent la course. Ceci est très important pour un organisateur. Pour moi, le doute est plus sur MTN en lieu et place de NettApp, qui avait également été très bonne l'an dernier sur la Vuelta.

    | Olivier73 | thursday 03 April 2014 at 19:19:56

  3. Bonsoir Olivier,

    Ce n'était pas Bagot plutôt ? Enfin, peut-être que Navarro sera aligné. Je n'ai pas trop de souvenir des coureurs de Cofidis pour les courses de 2012-2013 (à l'exception de Navarro qui était toujours là, mais discret). Avec ce début de saison bien pale de Coppel et Taaramae, je n'ai pas vraiment l'impression que ca va s'améliorer.

    NetApp est déjà sur le tour et ils ont un effectif pas suffisant pour aligner de nombreux coureurs sur deux GT, ils sont vraiment une dizaine à pouvoir tenir la route, alors sur deux GT, c'est trop peu.

    Nous verrons bien au mois de septembre ;)

    | Aurélien M. | friday 04 April 2014 at 19:11:47

  4. Je peux vous confirmer que Nairo sera au Giro et à la Vuelta !...

    Note: même si le Québec est sous la neige et gelé tout l'hiver, au printemps à la fonte des neiges, les nouvelles se rendent jusqu'à nous !...
    Pierre du Québec

    | Pierre Mailhiot | sunday 13 April 2014 at 04:05:45

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