Cyclist - - Esteban Chaves | Profile -


‘l’avenir was the race that meant I could be­come a pro­fes­sional. It is a very spe­cial race for Colom­bia, it was the first race Colom­bian riders won in the 1980s, so the peo­ple re­mem­ber it. When some­one wins now – Miguel Án­gel López, [Nairo] Quin­tana, my­self – it is good for our coun­try.’


‘When I won the Queen Stage at the Tour of Cal­i­for­nia in 2014, I knew I was back. Be­fore, I still had some doubts – could I do it? But that year I took the vic­tory in a hard stage of rac­ing. I knew I needed to con­tinue learn­ing – I’m still learn­ing, you need to be open to learn­ing in every mo­ment – but af­ter that win, the suc­cesses started to come.’


‘At first there was a lan­guage bar­rier. But other­wise the Aus­tralians are very sim­i­lar to the Colom­bians. Neil Stephens’s time in Europe would have been harder, be­cause at that time no one in the pelo­ton spoke English, so he had been through a sim­i­lar ex­pe­ri­ence and re­ally looked af­ter me. At the first train­ing camp, I spoke no English and I had no idea what they were talk­ing about, but they made me feel part of the team.’


‘The Giro d’italia is a spe­cial race for me. I turned pro­fes­sional in Italy, I speak the lan­guage. It is the most beau­ti­ful Grand Tour. We al­ways race hard, there is no con­trol, there is just pas­sion.’

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