Mikel Landa: 'I want to race the Giro and Tour in 2019'

Landa believes he can carry form through from the Giro into the Tour and can challenge for both races

Mikel Landa on stage 11 of the 2018 Tour de France (Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Spaniard Mikel Landa is aiming for both the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France in 2019, assuming Movistar will allow him to race both Grand Tours.

Landa placed seventh in the 2018 Tour and when still riding for Team Sky and Chris Froome, fourth in 2017.

"I want to do the Giro and the Tour," Landa told AS. "I'll talk to Eusebio [Unzué, the team manager] and then we'll see what happens."

>>> Romain Bardet takes aim at Giro and Tour de France double in 2019

The 28-year-old Basque rider made his Grand Tour breakthrough in the 2015 Giro by finishing third overall. He was helping then Astana team-mate Fabio Aru, who placed second behind Alberto Contador.

Landa won two Giro stages in 2015 and another in 2017 when leading Team Sky with Geraint Thomas. He also won the mountains jersey that year before going on to place fourth in the Tour.

"I don't think so," said Landa when asked if the Giro could affect his Tour ride one month later.

This year's Giro d'Italia route includes five high-mountain stage finishes. They are packed in the final week third week with the new Croce d'Aune climb the day before the final Verona time trial.

"There have been many mountains in the last week in Italy in recent years," added Landa, "and people go on to do well in the Tour."

This year saw Chris Froome and Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) both race the Giro d'Italia and Tour de France for the overall win. Froome won the first and placed third while helping Thomas win the Tour. Dumoulin finished second overall in both the Giro and the Tour.

However, due to the FIFA World Cup in Russia, the 2018 calendar was blessed with an extra week between the two Grand Tours. A tighter turnaround in 2019 could make life harder.

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) tried the Giro/Tour in 2017, finishing second in the Giro but suffering in the Tour, finishing 12th overall.

Colombian Quintana would be one of Movistar's two leaders in the 2019 Tour with Landa. The edition features a relatively low number of time trial kilometres that suits the climbers.

Landa is also racing with an eye on 2020 with next year being the last in his current Movistar contract.

"What I achieve in the races will affect my future," he said. "I hope to give headaches to those who have to renew me or those who want to sign me."

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Gregor Brown

Gregor Brown is an experienced cycling journalist, based in Florence, Italy. He has covered races all over the world for over a decade - following the Giro, Tour de France, and every major race since 2006. His love of cycling began with freestyle and BMX, before the 1998 Tour de France led him to a deep appreciation of the road racing season.