Recently crowned 2013 road race world champion Rui Costa (POR) will get the chance to wear his rainbow jersey at the 2013 Tour of Beijing when he headlines an impressive Movistar Team.
Costa outclassed the best riders in the world in challenging weather on a gruelling course to underline his proven ability as one of the best climbers on the UCI WorldTour.
The 26-year-old’s victory in Florence capped a remarkable season, which also saw him win the Tour de Suisse, capture two mountain stages of the 2013 Tour de France and finish 27th overall, despite sacrificing his own ambition in support of the team.
Costa finished ninth overall in the Tour of Beijing last year and will no doubt be looking to honour the rainbow stripes with a victory in the final race of the UCI WorldTour season.
“It’s a race that I know and like. I got within the best ten overall last year and I hope to profit from my good form at this time of the year. It will be the first stage race where I will get to wear my rainbow jersey and that makes it even more important for me,” Costa said.
Three-time Italian champion Giovanni Visconti and two-time Spanish champion Jose Ivan Gutierrez join Costa in a formidable Movistar Team. Both are Grand Tour veterans and will provide the tactical nous required on the tougher 2013 course.
With more climbs and a mountain top finish on Mentougou Miaofeng Mountain on stage four, Spanish champion Jesus Herrada, Giro d’Italia stage winner Beñat Intxausti and Costa Rican Andrey Amador are the three climbers likely to be responsible for supporting Costa on the tougher stages.
The wildcards for the Movistar Team are likely to come from the two 24-year-olds Alex Dowsett and Enrique Sanz. Three-time Great Britain national time trial champion Dowsett has already shown plenty of potential in his emerging career by winning 55km time trial stage at last Giro de Italia, while Sanz will be the protected rider in the bunch sprints.
José Luis Jaimerena, sports director at the Tour of Beijing states that “this year Movistar Team lines up a very powerful squad in Beijing to close the WorldTour season in the same brilliant way we have performed the entire season. The race, differently from previous editions, has a very hard mountain stage that will probably decide the final winner. Movistar Team will be there to fight for it”. Movistar Team is qualified 2nd on the UCI WorldTour ranking.
The 2013 Tour of Beijing will be held from the 11th to the 15th of October as the last event on the UCI WorldTour calendar. The five day, 836 kilometre route is opportunistic and takes in breathtaking views of the Great Wall, Beijing’s mountain terrain and embraces key tourism attractions such as Tiananmen Square and the Bird’s Nest.
Movistar Team – 2013 Tour of Beijing
The first rider from Costa Rica to participate in a Grand Tour, he claimed a further slice of national pride by winning a stage of the 2012 Giro d’Italia. A climber and support rider suited to the longer races, he is admired for providing support to the team leader in the Grand Tours. Represented Costa Rica at the 2012 Olympic Games and has an impressive season this year, finishing eighth overall at the Tirreno–Adriatico and tenth at the Gent–Wevelgem.
The recently crowned 2013 road race world champion after his triumph in Florence. Can climb with the best in the world, as evidenced by his two stage victories in the mountains of the 2013 Tour de France to finish 27th overall despite playing largely a super-domestique role to the two team leaders. Finished ninth overall at the 2012 Tour of Beijing and will be chasing the overall honours this year to go with the overall victory at the Tour de Suisse, a third overall finish at the Tour de Romandie and a ninth placing at the Liege-Bastogne-Liege.
A young rider set to carry the hopes of Great Britain cycling for the future he has shown immense promise since winning a silver medal in the time trial at the 2010 Commonwealth Games. A time trial specialist, he has progressed to win three consecutive Great Britain time trial championships (2011-2013). He switched teams for 2013 on the promise of participating in his first Grand Tour event and delivered on the faith put in him by winning the time trial at the Giro d’Italia this year.
Jose Ivan GUTIERREZ
A wily veteran who is admired for being a key super-domestique at the Grand Tour races and is often the last support rider in the mountains. A time trial specialist, he won the under-23 time trial world championship in 1999, has four Spanish time trial championships, but the biggest victories of his career have been saved for the two Spanish road race championships (2001, 2010). Also has two overall wins at the Eneco Tour (2007, 2008) and the overall of the 2007 Tour Méditerranéen.
The reigning Spanish champion looks to be delivering on the promise shown as a junior. Has already had three seasons at the elite level, despite being young and developing as a future climber.
Another respected hard-working member in the longer stage races. Finished tenth overall at the 2012 Vuelta a Espana and eighth overall at the 2013 Giro d’Italia, winning a stage in the mountains. Has come off the recent Vuelta a Espana and finished eighth overall at the Tour of the Basque Country
The sprinter on the team he returns to the Tour of Beijing for his third time having secured a top-10 stage finish on each of the past two events. Still developing at senior level, he did manage to secure a debut victory in Madrid in 2011. Also competes regularly on the track.
A beloved figure in Italy, he has won three road race national championships (2007, 2010, 2011) and in 2013 produced the best Giro d’Italia of his career, winning two stages and finishing 35th overall. Won the overall title at the 2010 Tour of Turkey and three overall victories in the collective UCI Europe Tour.
2013 Tour of Beijing Stages:
Stage One – Friday, 11th October
190.5km – Shunyi to Huairou Studio City
Stage Two – Saturday 12th October
201.5km – Huairou Studio City to Yanqing
Stage Three – Sunday 13th October
176km – Yanqing to Qiandiajian
Stage Four – Monday, 14th October
150.5km – Yanqing to Mentougou Miafeng Mountain
Stage Five – Tuesday, 15th October
117km – Tian an men Square to Bird’s Nest Piazza