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"Froome is not unbeatable. We have seen some of his strengths but also his weaknesses. Surely, he has a weakness. We have seen that in other races before the Tour."

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NAIRO QUINTANA

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27.01.2016 @ 17:48 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

"The Tour revealed my potential," confessed Nairo Quintana at the official presentation of the Movistar Team. Having just arrived in Spain from San Luis, Argentina, the Colombian keeps alive his desire to win the Tour de France alive. His priority of the 2016 season will be to become the first rider from his country to achieve that goal.

 

"I have been trying for a couple of year and will continue to see if I can do it," he said on his yellow dream after having been second in 2013 and 2015, both times behind Chris Froome. "Last year I made mistakes, like other teams, but I was good enough to be on the podium after a year of absence (he won the Giro 2014, ed.). For me, it was very important and gave me some confidence. I was not wrong in having that dream," he said at the Telefónica headquarters in Madrid.

 

The Colombian points "primarily" to Froome as the man to beat on his way to the top in Paris, "and Aru can also be a major rival for Astana because he is a fighter and brave". The British Sky is his key rival. "Froome is not unbeatable. We have seen some of his strengths but also his weaknesses. Surely, he has a weakness. We have seen that in other races before the Tour. I continue to mature, like the team and if I continue along that bath, I hope to beat him one day," he says. He doesn’t  forget Contador when asked about him. "I think that he is still young and h will surely continue to fight for the Tour and give war," he said when reminded that Eddy Merckx said the Spanish rider was 'too old'.

 

To reach Paris as number one, he trusts his Movistar Team. "We have reinforced the team and others have matured and gained experience. So I think we'll have a pretty good team. The course is similar to other yeats. There is a mountain time trial and that can favor me. We will always have a mixed team to look after me well in the first week where we will defend oursevlves and be armed for the mountains," he said.

 

The Olympic Games is the second goal of the year although he admits that it is a special race with national teams. "The difference is that we are riders from different teams representing a country at the Olympics, and it is all the more difficult. Here (at the Movistar Team) you know you are the leader and everyone is going to fight and work for you. Now I'm focused on the Tour and don’t rule out the Vuelta,” he added

 

The self-confidence is one of his strengths. "When things are done well, you can be sure of what you're capable of. I think I have done my job well and so if we are lucky, we can achieve our goals. That was the mentality of my father who had a very eventful life,” he said.

 

Quintana landed in Madrid after being third in the Tour de San Luis and having helped his brother Dayer to the final victory, something that pleases him. "It feels very good, not only to win, but we also made a good strategy for him (Dayer) to win. And people will realize that I am not only a leader, but can also be a domestiqye when I have to," he said.

 

Finally, he supports and encourages the idea of hosting the World Championships in Colombia like in 1995 when Abraham Oloano won. He believes that all the ingredients are there to try. "We are at the beginning of the season and the Colombians have been and will provide probably be protagonists throughout the year. It would be nice to have the Worlds in Colombia. Economically, the country is ready and it will not be a problem. We have already asked the UCI, "he said.

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