Looking Back on 2014: Tony & Rigo Go 1-2 at La Vuelta!
With the 2015 season about to begin, we wanted to recap the last few of our top moments of the 2014 season. The team earned 68 overall victories (64 road, 1 cyclocross, 3 track), and it was difficult to narrow down a small selection. However, it was clear which moments stood out for special mention.
Our next moment was La Vuelta a España Stage 10, where the team went 1-2 at the 36.7km ITT in Borja.
Tony Martin made the most out of the last kilometers of the time trial, winning with a time of 47 minutes and two seconds (46.818 km/h) despite not having the fastest two intermediate checkpoints. Meanwhile, team leader Rigoberto Uran moved himself into 3rd in the GC by a blazing fast time trial performance. He finished 2nd in the stage, just 15" down on his German teammate. Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) was 3rd, 18" down on Martin.
La Vuelta race leader Nairo Quintana (Movistar) suffered a crash, and lost time as a result. Alberto Contador wore the Red Jersey after this stage and went on to win the overall.
Martin's victory was the 60th overall, which was the third consecutive year the team won more than 60 races. Martin's victory was another milestone for the team, as they also won at least one stage of every grand tour this season, and one stage of every grand tour for the last seven years.
"Looking back, I remember saying it was one of the hardest time trials that year, and by the end of the season I still believed it was," Martin said. "The mountain made this time trial challenging, as it was hard to find rhythm and energy for the descent and flat sections that followed. It was also very technical, and it was hot. But I made up time in the second half of the course, and as always my Specialized Shiv helped me with performance in the technical sections. I was super happy to get a win in a time trial that didn't necessarily suit my skills. Plus, my teammate Rigoberto Uran was on the next step of the podium. That showed the strength of the team."
"Our preparation for time trials on this team has always made the difference and it was no exception at La Vuelta," Uran said. "Together with the staff we analyzed all the details, and at the end I think I did very well. When Davide Bramati told me on the radio that at the second intermediate time I had the same time of Tony, I couldn't believe it! It was really important to have that time gap from the team car, and to know we had a chance to go 1-2 I really went full gas. I lost some time in the last part, but to be honest the last 10 kilometers were really for big engine like Tony. Tony is a three-time world champion in this discipline, so to finish behind my teammate was nothing but an honor. I was really proud of what we did that day."