Mikel Landa reflects on Team Sky
Spanish GC hopeful reflects on move to Movistar
Mikel Landa says that his two years riding with Chris Froome and Team Sky have made him “stronger and more confident”, as he leaves the British squad for Movistar in 2018.
Landa helped Froome win the 2017 Tour de France in July after he himself won the mountains jersey at the Giro d’italia. Movistar have signed him to lead their Grand Tour team next season.
“I feel stronger and I have more confidence in myself. I’m a stronger rider than two years ago [when I joined Sky],” said Landa, who was racing last weekend in South China at the Tour of Guangxi, his last fixture in team Sky’s black and blue colours.
“I learnt a lot because Team Sky is one of the best teams in three-week races and they have one of the best riders at this moment with Chris Froome,” he added. “It’s been a very nice experience, but now I have different ambitions and different goals, so I decided to leave the team.”
Sky took Landa as co-leader with Geraint Thomas to the Giro d’italia this year. Both riders crashed on stage nine and fell out of the overall ranks but Landa salvaged his and Sky’s Giro by going on to win a mountain stage and the blue mountains jersey.
He rebounded from the Giro in the Tour de France as Froome’s domestique deluxe and during the race some insiders started saying that he was so strong that perhaps he would lead Sky when Froome lost the yellow jersey on the stage to Peyragudes.
“Spanish fans and press want a new Spanish rider winning the Tour and they started to create stories, but I was working for Chris from the first day and I don’t think it’s fair to say otherwise,” said Landa.
Landa will likely be Movistar's GC leader in at least one of the Grand Tours in 2018.
“It’s a Spanish team and I’m pretty sure I will have all the support I need,” Landa said.