Wednesday, September 19, 2012

No future for Txurruka

Amets Txurruka has been informed by team management that he will not be part of Euskaltel Euskadi next year.

Basque daily DEIA, always well-informed, broke the news earlier today. Allegedly, incoming General Manager Igor González de Galdeano called the ever-aggressive 29-year-old after the conclusion of the Vuelta a España and told him his lack of UCI points will cost him his place on the team.

Txurruka, ever a fans' favourite since joining from Barloworld ahead of the 2007 season, has not confirmed the news himself, nor has the team confirmed it, but it appears certain that the Etxebarria-native will now need to start looking for a new team in order to save his career.

Txurruka's likely departure will only serve to fuel the ever-ongoing discussion about the UCI's revamped points system, a system seen by many to devalue the domestiques of the peloton. Txurruka has this year taken on all Grand Tours, but was forced to pull out of the Tour de France in July because of a collarbone fracture.

Fellow climber and trusted team-mate Iván Velasco will also have to look for a new employer, writes the same paper. The injury-prone 32-year-old joined the team along with Txurruka back in 2007, and recently enjoyed a renaissance of sorts with a strong 26th overall in the Vuelta, having spent the majority of the race watching out for team-leader Igor Antón. The lack of points obtained is, in his case as well, supposed to be the reason he's being let go.

Galdeano, who's got 12 riders signed for next year, will in the next few days be hoping to renew the current deals of Pablo Urtasun, Gorka Verdugo, Rubén and Alan Pérez, Mikel Astarloza, Jorge Azanza, Pierre Cazaux, Juan José Oroz and Miguel Minguez.

Here's the list of the 12 riders who's services Euskaltel have, at the time being, secured for 2013:
  • Igor Antón
  • Peio Bilbao
  • Víctor Cabedo
  • Ricardo García
  • Gorka Izagirre
  • Ion Izagirre
  • Mikel Landa
  • Egoi Martínez
  • Mikel Nieve
  • Adrián Sáez
  • Samuel Sánchez
  • Romain Sicard


azanca02 said...

Sad day!!! That is really unfair since he was always a domestique in the high mountains.

Kristof said...

This is not honest. Amets belongs to the Orange. Galdeano is destroying our team. Oroz gets a new contract? If I would not read your blog I would be sure he had stopped cycling for two years. Everyone knows Amets, he attacks at every opportunity. This can/may not happen. Also losing Velasco/ Alan Perez; these our three of our TDF guys last year. Why must they leave if 1) riders who not deserve it (Oroz/Astarloza, maybe Azanza/Saez) get a new contract 2) they will be replaced by less talented foreigners?

Kristof said...

I read now even Cazaux is getting a new contract. Come on guys he isn't even able to win a bike race around the church. I can only see one reason, these guys Oroz/Cazaux almost ride free and Amets is bit expensive comparing the wins he has? But then again, he's holy to the Basques, won't believe the fans let this happen.

Josh Buehner said...

Wow. I'm away from the blog a few days and this is what I come back to? Cabedo dies in a car crash and Amets leaving the Orange?

I can't fathom this team with out Txutxu. He is everything that is Euskaltel. Kristof's right, the excuse is points?! I'm speechless.

Nick said...

Any rumours that Velasco and Txu end up on Caja?

kKDu said...

I still can't believe this.
Wish they forgot about the Pro-Tour team stuff and stayed with their philosophy.
Maybe they will have more big races this way, but I can't imagine they will have more fans.

And now I have to hurry to set up my own team, as long as Txurruka is on the market.


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