102 Facts About Alejandro Valverde


Alejandro Valverde Belmonte was born on 25 April 1980 and is a Spanish former professional road racing cyclist, who last rode for UCI WorldTeam Movistar Team.

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Alejandro Valverde is rare in combining different specialties in road bicycle racing, being a strong climbing specialist, sprinter and a good time-trialist.

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Alejandro Valverde's brother Juan Francisco was an amateur road racing cyclist.

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Alejandro Valverde allegedly took more than fifty consecutive victories between 11 and 13 years old, earning him the nickname El Imbatido.

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Alejandro Valverde moved to the development team of the Kelme–Costa Blanca professional squad and was coached by Francisco Moya, whom he credited with helping him become a better cyclist.

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Alejandro Valverde turned professional in 2002 when he signed a contract with the Spanish team Kelme–Costa Blanca, with whom he stayed until the end of the 2004 season.

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Alejandro Valverde ended the season with a second place in the 2003 UCI Road World Championships behind Igor Astarloa after winning the sprint ahead of Peter Van Petegem and Paolo Bettini.

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Alejandro Valverde went on to win the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana, the Vuelta a Murcia, a stage in the Tour of the Basque Country, the Vuelta a Burgos and taking fourth in the Vuelta a Espana.

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Alejandro Valverde joined the UCI ProTeam Illes Balears–Caisse d'Epargne in 2005.

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Alejandro Valverde won the last stage in Paris–Nice and finished second overall behind Bobby Julich.

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Alejandro Valverde was leading in the young rider classification, with a 3-minute and 9 second lead on Armstrong's teammate Yaroslav Popovych.

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However, Alejandro Valverde was forced to withdraw from the Tour during the 13th stage because of a knee injury.

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Alejandro Valverde recovered barely in time for the UCI Road World Championships in Madrid, Spain.

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In 2006, Alejandro Valverde won a stage in the Tour of the Basque Country, finishing 2nd overall and capturing the points competition.

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Alejandro Valverde then completed a prestigious double in the Spring classics, winning La Fleche Wallonne and taking victory four days later at Liege–Bastogne–Liege.

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Alejandro Valverde subsequently won a stage in the Tour de Romandie finishing 3rd overall.

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Alejandro Valverde planned to challenge at the 2006 Tour de France, and stated that he hoped to win in the future.

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Alejandro Valverde went to the Pinarello bicycle factory in Treviso, Italy, to optimize his time-trialing performance.

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However, on the third stage of the race, Alejandro Valverde crashed, and had to abandon the Tour with a fractured right collarbone.

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Alejandro Valverde won the 7th stage and dominated mountain stages, earning him the gold leader jersey after stage 9.

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Alejandro Valverde lost the jersey however due to the aggressive climbing and attacking of Alexander Vinokourov.

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Alejandro Valverde started 2007 by winning the overall classification at Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana and Vuelta a Murcia.

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In stage 4 of the Vuelta a Murcia, Alejandro Valverde accomplished his first win in an individual time trial.

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Alejandro Valverde finished third in the Criterium International and fifth in the Tour of the Basque Country.

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Alejandro Valverde subsequently finished sixth overall, eleven minutes behind, and thus finished his first Tour de France after being unable to complete the race in 2005 and 2006.

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Alejandro Valverde decided not to race the Vuelta a Espana in order to prepare for the UCI Road World Championships.

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On 29 August 2007, the UCI announced that they prevented Alejandro Valverde from riding the World Championships in Stuttgart because of his possible implication in the Operacion Puerto doping case to safeguard the atmosphere and reputation of the World Championships.

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Alejandro Valverde announced his readiness with a podium finish in the Klasika Primavera and a triumph at the Paris–Camembert.

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Alejandro Valverde performed better in the Alps and claimed a top ten finish.

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Alejandro Valverde followed the Tour with a strong victory in the Clasica de San Sebastian, leading out the sprint and holding off Alexandr Kolobnev and Davide Rebellin.

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Alejandro Valverde started 2009 in good form by taking the points and mountains classifications in the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon while finishing 9th overall with two stage victories.

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Alejandro Valverde won the Klasika Primavera and the Volta a Catalunya to put those disappointments behind him.

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Alejandro Valverde performed consistently throughout the two early time-trials to stay in touch with the leaders before finishing second on Mont Ventoux to take the lead in the overall classification.

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On 20 September 2009, Alejandro Valverde clinched the overall victory in the Vuelta a Espana.

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Alejandro Valverde made his return to the peloton during the Tour Down Under, the first race of the UCI World Tour season.

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Alejandro Valverde finished third in Paris–Nice, and by winning stage 3 showed good form for the upcoming Tour de France.

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Alejandro Valverde entered the Vuelta a Espana as a lieutenant to the defending champion Juan Jose Cobo in the Movistar Team.

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Alejandro Valverde would take the lead of the general, points and combination classifications after winning Stage 3, in which he chased down repeated attacks from Alberto Contador and outsprinted Joaquim Rodriguez at the finishing line.

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Alejandro Valverde ultimately finished the Vuelta in second position overall after being a constant threat for the leader, which was Rodriguez until stage 17 where Contador soloed to victory and grabbed the lead, which he would not relinquish.

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Alejandro Valverde won both the points and combination classification jerseys on the final day from Rodriguez as a result of a sixth-place finish on the last stage in Madrid.

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Alejandro Valverde had to settle for a bronze medal in the World Championships in Valkenburg, as he was unable to reach Philippe Gilbert who attacked on the final climb of the Cauberg.

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Alejandro Valverde was the first of a group of 27 riders who had a five seconds deficit on the Belgian when crossing the line.

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Alejandro Valverde was supposed to participate in the Giro di Lombardia, but announced on the morning of the race that he was suffering from influenza and was putting an end to his 2012 season.

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Alejandro Valverde continued showing some good form after finishing with podium places in the Vuelta a Murcia, the Amstel Gold Race and in Liege–Bastogne–Liege.

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Alejandro Valverde started the Tour in good form after finishing third in Ax3 Domaines behind Chris Froome and Richie Porte.

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At the Vuelta a Espana, after stage 10, Alejandro Valverde sat fourth overall a minute behind race leader Chris Horner.

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On stage 14, on a rainy descent, Valverde was dropped by the G C contenders entering the final climb a minute back.

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Alejandro Valverde managed to limit his losses on the final climb staying within a minute of his rivals, though losing close to a minute on Nibali, Horner, and Joaquim Rodriguez.

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Alejandro Valverde entered the penultimate stage 20 a minute behind the race leader.

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Alejandro Valverde came third of the stage which finished atop the steep Alto de l'Angliru, securing a podium finish in the general classification, one minute and 36 seconds behind race winner Horner.

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On 2 August 2014 Alejandro Valverde won the Clasica de San Sebastian for the second time in his career.

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Alejandro Valverde won the first uphill finish of the Vuelta a Espana by powering away from the leaders after leading the group for most of the final climb.

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Alejandro Valverde finished the Spanish Grand Tour on the third step of the podium behind Chris Froome and the overall winner Alberto Contador.

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At the World Road Race Championships in Ponferrada, Alejandro Valverde stood on the third step on the podium for the third year in a row.

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Alejandro Valverde came in second at the Giro di Lombardia, passing Contador for first place in the UCI World Tour rankings.

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Alejandro Valverde grabbed three stage victories in the Volta a Catalunya.

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The following Wednesday, Alejandro Valverde equalled the record number of victories on La Fleche Wallonne with 3, distancing Julian Alaphilippe and Michael Albasini in the final meters of the Mur de Huy.

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Alejandro Valverde went one better the following Sunday, winning the sprint of a small group of riders to impose himself on Liege–Bastogne–Liege.

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At the Tour de France, Alejandro Valverde finished on the podium in 3rd place, his first podium finish at the Tour; achieving a lifelong dream of a top 3 finish.

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Alejandro Valverde changed his initial plan of riding the Tour of Flanders and went to Tenerife to prepare for the Giro.

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Alejandro Valverde returned to competition by winning two stages and the overall at the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon which he chose to race instead of the Amstel Gold Race, a race still lacking from his palmares.

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Alejandro Valverde showed his climbing prowess by controlling up until the last 150 metres when he accelerated away from his rivals to take the victory.

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Alejandro Valverde was named in the start list for the Giro d'Italia, his first participation in the Italian race.

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Alejandro Valverde rode a consistent race but struggled in the high mountains especially on the queen stage in the Dolomites where he lost more than three minutes.

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Alejandro Valverde fought back the very next day with a third place in the mountain time trial and managed to win his first Giro d'Italia stage the day after the rest day in Andalo, his 14th stage win over the three Grand Tours.

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Alejandro Valverde secured his spot on the podium by outclimbing Steven Kruijswijk on the very last mountain stage and finished third overall, becoming only the 16th cyclist to finish on the podium in each of the three Grand Tours.

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Later that year, Alejandro Valverde finished sixth in the Tour de France, earning his ninth consecutive top 10 finish in his last nine grand tour starts.

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In February 2017 Alejandro Valverde took his first win of the season at the Vuelta a Murcia, a race that he had previously won four times.

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Alejandro Valverde followed this up with a win in the Vuelta a Andalucia for the fifth time in six years, defeating runner-up Alberto Contador by a single second and winning stage one in the process.

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At the Tour of the Basque Country, Alejandro Valverde won stage five and went into the final day's individual time trial as the race leader, albeit on the same time as Cannondale–Drapac's Rigoberto Uran and Michael Woods, AG2R La Mondiale's Romain Bardet, and UAE Team Emirates' Louis Meintjes, along with having just a three-second advantage over Contador.

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Alejandro Valverde punctuated his dominance in La Fleche Wallonne by winning the race for the fourth consecutive year and the fifth time overall.

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Alejandro Valverde managed to put time into the rest of his general classification rivals, including Contador, Bardet, and most notably, defending champion Chris Froome.

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Alejandro Valverde suffered a fractured kneecap, ruling him out for several months.

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Ultimately, Alejandro Valverde opted to end his 2017 season because of his knee injury with the hope of making his comeback at the start of the 2018 season.

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Alejandro Valverde returned to racing at the Challenge Mallorca in late January 2018.

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Alejandro Valverde finished 17 seconds clear of Dutch rider Wilco Kelderman from Team Sunweb.

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Alejandro Valverde finished fourth, 1 minute and 25 seconds behind winner Tiesj Benoot of Lotto–Soudal.

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Later that month, Alejandro Valverde won the Volta a Catalunya for the third time in his career.

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Alejandro Valverde won the second and fourth stages during the race, taking the race lead – and the mountains jersey as well – for good after his second stage victory.

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Alejandro Valverde finished 29 seconds clear of his nearest rival, teammate Nairo Quintana, after Quintana's Colombian compatriot Egan Bernal crashed out of the race on the final day.

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Alejandro Valverde made several long attacks in service of his teammates Quintana and Mikel Landa but all the three Movistar Team leaders failed to threaten the podium.

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Alejandro Valverde returned for the Vuelta a Espana where was supposed to work for Quintana.

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Alejandro Valverde won stage 2 in an uphill sprint and stage 8 in a reduced bunch sprint, beating then World Champion Peter Sagan in the latter.

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Alejandro Valverde maintained a high position in the general classification until the last weekend and still had a chance of overall victory.

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Alejandro Valverde struggled in the last two stages in Andorra and only managed to finish 5th, but won the points classification for a record-equalling fourth time.

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Alejandro Valverde won the gold medal at the UCI Road World Championships in Innsbruck, in his twelfth participation.

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Alejandro Valverde triumphed in a small group sprint at the finish line ahead of Romain Bardet, Michael Woods and Tom Dumoulin, becoming the second oldest Road World Champion in history after Joop Zoetemelk.

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An emotional Alejandro Valverde called this his biggest ever victory and one he has chased for 15 years.

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Alejandro Valverde took his first major result of 2019 when he finished second overall to Ion Izagirre in the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana.

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Alejandro Valverde then finished second again, this time to Luis Leon Sanchez, at the Vuelta a Murcia.

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At the 2019 UAE Tour, Alejandro Valverde took his first victory as World Champion by winning the sprint at the summit finish of stage 3.

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Alejandro Valverde would go on to finish the race in second place overall.

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Alejandro Valverde started the race, not knowing of the severity of his injury, and then abandoned during the event, the first time he had not finished.

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At the Vuelta a Espana, Alejandro Valverde took victory at stage 7 of the race, a summit finish at Mas de la Costa.

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Alejandro Valverde competed in the 2021 Tour de France, finishing twenty-fourth.

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Alejandro Valverde's best result was a second place on stage 15.

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Alejandro Valverde participated in the Men's individual road race in the 2020 Summer Olympics, his 5th participation in Olympic Games.

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Alejandro Valverde has been linked by documentary and DNA evidence to the Operacion Puerto, a blood-doping affair which erupted in May 2006 against doctor Eufemiano Fuentes and a number of accomplices.

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Alejandro Valverde was not initially linked in the investigation, but documents from Madrid's Court 31 linked Alejandro Valverde to a single bag of human plasma of the 211 total bags of blood and plasma seized in the investigation.

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In 2007 Alejandro Valverde was banned by the International Cycling Union from competing in the UCI Road World Championships in Stuttgart but Alejandro Valverde was cleared by the Court of Arbitration for Sport to compete at the championships.

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At a February 2009 appearance in front of the Olympic Committee, Alejandro Valverde maintained his innocence and questioned the Italians' jurisdiction over this case.

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Finally, on 31 May 2010 it was announced the Court of Arbitration for Sport upheld the appeals from WADA and the UCI and Alejandro Valverde was banned for two years, starting 1 January 2010, but rejected the request that any results obtained by the athlete prior to the beginning of the suspension be annulled.

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