Mikel Landa

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Mikel Landa
Mikel Landa - Critérium du Dauphiné 2012 - Prologue (cropped).jpg
Personal information
Full name Mikel Landa Meana
Born (1989-12-13) 13 December 1989 (age 27)
Murgia, Spain
Height 1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)
Weight 60 kg (130 lb)
Team information
Current team Team Sky
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type Climber
Professional team(s)
2009–2010 Orbea Continental
2011–2013 Euskaltel–Euskadi[1]
2014–2015 Astana
2016- Team Sky
Major wins

Grand Tours

Giro d'Italia
Mountains classification (2017)
3 individual stages (2015, 2017)
Vuelta a España
1 individual stage (2015)

Stage races

Giro del Trentino (2016)

Mikel Landa Meana (born 13 December 1989) is a professional Spanish road cyclist, currently riding for Team Sky.[2] His career breakthrough came at the 2015 Giro d'Italia where he won two stages and finished third overall.

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Landa was born in Murgia (Álava), in the Basque Country (autonomous community) in northern Spain. Like many Basque cyclists he began his career at the Orbea Continental development team, in 2009, before graduating to the Euskaltel-Euskadi professional team in 2011. After three years with the Euskaltel–Euskadi squad, Landa left the team at the end of the 2013 season – due to its disestablishment – to join Astana.[2]

Astana (2014-2015)[edit]

Landa won a Stage of the 2014 Giro del Trentino before riding the 2014 Giro d'Italia as one of Fabio Aru's mountain domestiques. He helped Aru to finish third overall.

In 2015, Landa attacked from a breakaway on the final climb of the day to win the fifth stage of his home race, the Tour of the Basque Country.[3]

Landa (left) with Fabio Aru and Steven Kruijswijk at the 2015 Giro d'Italia

Landa rode the Giro d'Italia, again initially as a domestique for Aru. On Stage 8, the second mountain top finish of the race to Campitello Matese Landa finished second after following an attack by Aru, and then unsuccessfully chasing after leader Beñat Intxausti (Movistar Team) in an attempt to win the stage. By doing so Landa rose to fifth place overall, 42 seconds down on leader Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo).[4] Landa rose to third overall on Stage 10, when Richie Porte (Team Sky) was given a time penalty for accepting a wheel change from Orica-GreenEDGE rider Simon Clarke.[5] On Stage 14, a 59.4 km individual time trial, Landa was caught on the road by Contador, losing over three minutes to him, and dropped to seventh overall, 4 minutes 55 seconds back. However, the next day, Landa won the mountainous Stage 15 after attacking Contador on the final climb, the Madonna di Campiglio, and proving stronger than Aru, who he finished six seconds ahead of.[6] After the race's second rest day on the following stage, Stage 16 was the queen's stage with five Italian Alpine peaks, including the Tonale, Mortirolo and a mountain finish to Aprica. On the first of two climbs to Aprica, Contador suffered a mechanical problem, after which Team Katusha and Astana immediately pressed on the pace at the front, sparking a bit of controversy over respect and fair play.[7] After a long chase Contador eventually caught up with Landa, Aru and Steven Kruijswijk (Team LottoNL-Jumbo) on the Mortirolo after being 52 seconds down at the start of the climb. Contador then counter-attacked, with Landa proving stronger than Aru, who was unable to follow the move. Landa rode away on the final ascent to Aprica, winning his second stage in a row by 38 seconds over Kruijswijk and Contador. Aru finished 2 minutes and 51 seconds behind, and thus Landa moved ahead of his teammate to second overall.[8] However, on Stage 19 it was Aru who proved the stronger of the two, attacking on the final climb to Cervinia and taking 1 minute and 18 seconds on Contador and Landa, who did not respond to his move. On Stage 20, the last mountain stage, Landa attacked on the Colle delle Finestre, taking the Cima Coppi for crossing the highest point of the race in the lead as he crossed the summit with Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha), a minute ahead of Aru and a minute and a half ahead of Contador. However, Landa waited for Aru on the descent, and the pair were unable to take sufficient time from Contador on the remainder of the stage, before Aru attacked on the final climb to Sestriere to win the Stage. Although Contador lost two and a half minutes on what he described as an "off-day", he kept the maglia rosa with a lead of 2' 02" over Aru to win the Giro, with Landa finishing third overall 3 minutes 14 seconds back.[9]

Landa rode the 2015 Vuelta a España again in support of Aru, after Astana's other leader Vincenzo Nibali was disqualified on the 2nd Stage for holding onto a team car. Landa won the mountainous Stage 11 from Andorra la Vella to Cortals d'Encamp from the breakaway, ignoring team orders to drop back and assist Aru.[10] However, Landa did work for Aru during the rest of the race as the Italian traded the race lead with Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin), and played a key role in the decisive move on Stage 20 when he and Aru dropped Dumoulin on the penultimate climb before being joined by teammates from the breakaway to ride away from Dumoulin, who lost over three minutes and thus the Vuelta to Aru.

Team Sky (2016-)[edit]

In September 2015 Landa confirmed that he would join Team Sky for the 2016 season.[11]

After missing several early season races through illness, Landa made his first appearance for Team Sky at the Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bartali, in which he finished 11th overall.[12] Landa then rode his home race, the Tour of the Basque Country, where he won the second stage to take the race lead.[13]

Landa led Sky at the Giro del Trentino in his last warm up race before the 2016 Giro d'Italia. He won Stage 2 to take the race lead, and successfully defended it on the following two stages despite attacks from Astana duo Tanel Kangert and Jakob Fuglsang to take overall victory by a single second over Kangert.[14] Landa abandoned the Giro d'Italia part-way through Stage 10 after being hampered by illness overnight and being diagnosed with viral gastroenteritis. This came just a day after he had impressed in the Stage 9 individual time trial, after which he was sitting in 8th place overall.[15]

Landa was named in the start list for the 2016 Tour de France.[16] He helped Chris Froome win the race for a third time by acting as a mountain domestique.

Landa won his second Cima Coppi on Stage 16 of the 2017 Giro d'Italia, beating Igor Antón (Team Dimension Data) to the summit of Passo dello Stelvio. [17] Landa finished 2nd in the stage after just being outsprinted by Vincenzo Nibali at the finish line in Bormio. Landa, also, finished 2nd two days later in Stage 18 behind Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing Team). [18] Landa won Stage 19 in the summit finish to Piancavallo.

Career achievements[edit]

Major results[edit]

2010
5th Overall Tour de l'Avenir
10th Overall Ronde de l'Isard
2011
Vuelta a Burgos
1st Jersey red.svg Mountains classification
1st Stage 5
2012
2nd GP Miguel Indurain
7th Overall Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid
7th Vuelta Ciclista a La Rioja
2013
2nd Overall Vuelta a Asturias
1st Jersey red.svg Points classification
2nd Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid
6th Overall Vuelta a Burgos
6th Clásica de San Sebastián
2014
10th Overall Giro del Trentino
1st Stage 4
2015
3rd Overall Giro d'Italia
1st Stages 15 & 16
1st Azzurri d'Italia classification
1st Stage 11 Vuelta a España
Jersey red number.svg Combativity award Stage 11
1st Stage 5 Tour of the Basque Country
1st Stage 2 (TTT) Vuelta a Burgos
2nd Overall Giro del Trentino
2016
1st Jersey violet.svg Overall Giro del Trentino
1st Jersey green.svg Mountains classification
1st Stage 2
1st Stage 2 Tour of the Basque Country
2017
1st Jersey blue.svg Mountains classification Giro d'Italia
1st Stage 19
5th Overall Tour of the Alps
6th Overall Vuelta a Andalucía

Grand Tour general classification results timeline[edit]

Grand Tour 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
A pink jersey Giro d'Italia 34 3 DNF 17
A yellow jersey Tour de France 35
A red jersey Vuelta a España 69 39 28 25
Legend
Did not compete
DNF Did not finish

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Basque Country's Euskaltel present UCI World Tour team". EITB. EiTB Group. 23 October 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2013. The Basque backbone remains with Samuel Sanchez, Igor Anton, Ion Izagirre, Mikel Landa, Gorka Izagirre, Pello Bilbao, Mikel Astarloza and Mikel Nieve. 
  2. ^ a b Corsi, Luca (10 August 2013). "Mikel Landa, al Astana" [Mikel Landa, to Astana]. El Diario Vasco (in Spanish). Grupo Vocento. Retrieved 10 August 2013. 
  3. ^ Daniel Benson (10 April 2015). "País Vasco: Landa wins penultimate stage". Cyclingnews.com. Future plc. Retrieved 10 April 2015. 
  4. ^ "Giro d'Italia: Intxausti wins stage 8 summit finish at Campitello Matese". cyclingnews.com. 
  5. ^ "Giro d'Italia: Richie Porte docked two minutes". cyclingnews.com. 
  6. ^ Stephen Puddicombe (24 May 2015). "Astana unable to break Contador as Mikel Landa wins Giro d’Italia stage 15". Cycling Weekly. IPC Media Sports & Leisure network. Retrieved 25 May 2015. 
  7. ^ "Tinkov: I don't think Astana and Katusha showed any class". cyclingnews.com. 
  8. ^ Richard Windsor (26 May 2015). "Mikel Landa takes second stage victory on gruelling day at Giro d’Italia". Cycling Weekly. IPC Media Sports & Leisure network. Retrieved 26 May 2015. 
  9. ^ "Giro d'Italia stage 20: Aru wins in Sestriere". cyclingnews.com. 
  10. ^ Fotheringham, Alasdair (3 September 2015). "Vuelta a Espana: 'I needed a win so I took my day,' says Mikel Landa". Cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  11. ^ Clarke, Stuart (16 September 2015). "Mikel Landa confirms he will ride for Team Sky in 2016". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 24 September 2015. 
  12. ^ http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/landa-puts-doubts-to-bed-after-finally-starting-his-season/
  13. ^ http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/racing/landa-climbs-into-tour-of-the-basque-country-lead-219728
  14. ^ http://www.cyclingnews.com/races/giro-del-trentino-2016/stage-4/results/
  15. ^ http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/landa-abandons-giro-ditalia/
  16. ^ "2016 > 103rd Tour de France > Startlist". ProCyclingStats. Retrieved 30 June 2016. 
  17. ^ http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/giro-ditalia-landa-goes-close-after-conquering-the-stelvio/
  18. ^ http://www.cyclingnews.com/giro-ditalia/stage-18/results/

External links[edit]