Sunday, December 18, 2011

Martín relishing new challenge

As Iban Mayo Blog revealed back in October, released Orbea rider Noel Martín will form part of what is arguably one of Spain's top amateur teams, Supermercados-Froiz, in 2012. Yet despite taking what seems like a step back, the native of Álava is chomping at the bit to get started with his new outfit. And he admits turning down offers from outside of his home country in order to join the red and whites.

"To be honest, this (Supermercados-Froiz) was the best option I had", he writes on his own website. "I received a couple of offers from outside of Spain, but they left me with a lot of questions. They were attractive, but not convincing, so I decided to stay here and focus everything on the two wheels. Supermercados-Froiz is the best amateur team out there - they've got some great riders, and some really experienced ones too (like José Antonio de Segovia, Angel Vallejo, Moisés Dueñas...). I know most of the guys, especially the first two as they're Ávilan too, so I'm sure I'll enjoy it there and that we'll cooperate well together".

Martín will aim to perform strongly in the Spanish Cup races, but admits he'll compete in another discipline as well.

"I'm training on the track twice a week at the moment, just to ease back into it. I'll up the intensity in January with a few to the first competition later that month and in mid-February. My goal is to be selected for the national team for the Worlds or the European champs. But if I am to achieve that, I'll have to work hard. I'm not getting ahead of myself!".

Despite admitting being let go by Orbea was a tough pill to swallow, the 22-year-old is intent on earning a new chance to ride with the pros:

"I hope to rediscover the confidence I lost during my two-year spell at the professional level. I want another shot at it! It'll be difficult, but I'll do my utmost to get back there!"

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