Annemiek van Vleuten signs for Movistar 

The reigning world champion is leaving Mitchelton-Scott after five years of dominance 

Annemiek van Vleuten wins Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2020 (Photo by Luc Claessen/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Annemiek van Vleuten will be leaving Mitchelton-Scott for Movistar.

The Dutch superstar will be leaving her current team after five seasons of dominating the women’s peloton.

Van Vleuten, reigning world champion, will join the Spanish Women’s WorldTour team on a two year deal. 

The 37-year-old said: “I'm not the youngest in the peloton anymore, but I am super ambitious and I want to do very well with this team. It is not in my head to think about retirement, far from it. Right now what matters to me is to keep improving. 

“Hopefully joining this team and enjoying this new environment will give me new energy. In addition to improving that performance, I see this opportunity as a good time to join a team of young girls who, after these years of growth of the Movistar Team, surely can take advantage of having someone like me by their side, who transmits those little things to them, those important tips to take the last big leap. 

“I like working with young talents, and helping them and also supporting Spanish cycling is another goal for me here.” 

Van Vleuten has history with Movistar dating back to 2014, when one of the team’s coaches invited her to train with the men’s team in Sierra Nevada, Spain. 

The training session was the first time Van Vleuten had ridden with a men’s squad, an approach she has become famed for as she now regularly rides with the men’s Mitchelton team.

She said: “We trained quietly, they waited for me after the climbs, each one did their work and every day, after dinner, you could tell that there was good vibes in the team, they got together to stay a while longer instead of going back to their rooms ... I even played table tennis one day with Alejandro Valverde!

“With the women's team, the feeling is the same.”

Van Vleuten will transform the Movistar squad when she arrives, as the outfit have been lacking an international star. The team hope Van Vleuten can win big in a huge range of races.  

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Manager of the Movistar women’s team, Sebastian Unzue, said: “Her greatness lies in the fact that she is, perhaps, the only cyclist who, from my point of view, is capable of winning any race on the calendar. For the team it is a great challenge, a great motivation and it allows us to aim high and aspire to win, or be in front, in the most important races on the calendar.”  

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