Alejandro Valverde plans to retire in 2021: I will have to be home and enjoy the family
Mar 30 2019 04:11 am CET

Alejandro Valverde plans to retire in 2021: I will have to be home and enjoy the family
Alejandro Valverde plans to retire in 2021: I will have to be home and enjoy the family
Photo of Alejandro Valverde © Mary Cárdenas / CyclingPub.com

Movistar's Alejandro Valverde has stated that he expects to retire from cycling in 2021 one year after the Olympic Games of 2020. If everything turns out as he expects, the World Champion will retire at 41.

At 38 years of age, Valverde does what a lot of younger cyclists can not even dream of, but despite keeping his good shape, he already thinks of his retirement. "The idea is to retire in 2021 because it will have to happen," said the rider in an interview with the Spanish newspaper El Periodico. "I will do one more season after the Olympic Games of Tokyo because I think it will be time to do so.

"There comes a day that I will have to be home and enjoy the family. Then I will see what comes next, if I dedicate to the kid's team I support in Murcia or if I keep working with Eusebio Unzue's structure. In 2021, I will be 19 seasons as a rider."

Valverde won the World Championships in Innsbruck in 2018 and have seen the images of the victory several times. "To be honest I don't watch them as much anymore," he explained. "But I've seen them several times and even when I see them today, I get goosebumps because it is something that will be part of history.

"I know that there is a curse linked to this rainbow jersey and as a matter of fact, I've been noticing it. Here in the Volta, for example, or in the number of second places I've been taking this year in places where I used to be the first. I always find a rider in front of me because he's stronger because he has more luck. In the three stage races I did before the Volta a Catalunya, I finished second. There are too many second places but they also show that I'm in good shape and that I can fight for victories."

But for the rider, to wear the Rainbow Jersey is the biggest honour than to get the Yellow Jersey of the Tour de France. "It is the biggest stage race worldwide, but I don't change this jersey for the 'Yellow'," Valverde explained. "If you are the leader of the race, you have the honour to wear the yellow jersey for a few days and that's it. But on the other side, to wear the World Champion jersey for a year is priceless."
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ALEJANDRO VALVERDE
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