Procycling

MOVISTAR WOMEN’S WORLDTOUR TEAM 2021 SMALL STEPS

Movistar ventured into the unknown in 2018, after nearly four decades of being one of the most successful teams in men’s professional cycling. The team announced, at their sponsor headquarters of Telefonica, the launch of a women’s programme. The Spanish outfit would take their experience from men’s cycling to foster women’s cycling in Spain and generate equal opportunity in the sport. Working alongside the Spanish cycling federation, they would be joining a growing number of programmes with both men’s and women’s teams, including Sunweb, Astana, and Mitchelton-Scott.

It started small with a list of 10, mostly young, under-23 riders. The team enjoyed a slew of top-10 finishes throughout their debut season, including at the Ladies Tour of Norway, Giro Rosa, and the Madrid Challenge. Movistar began with a few international riders, national champions from France and Poland - Aude Biannic and Małgorzata Jasinska - but focus remained on the talent at home. They signed an additional two riders for 2019 but struggled, totalling three wins in Spain for the season.

“We were not into women’s cycling; we didn’t know that much,” team manager Sebastián Unzué tells of those first two years. “We never had

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