2023 Edition

Stage won 0
General Ranking 10
Competitors in race 4
Sporting managers : LEDANOIS Yvon / GARCIA José vicente

The history

The team was originally founded in Pamplona as an amateur squad by Eusebio Unzué, who still manages it after leaving the wise José Miguel Echavarri in the driver's seat for many years. After 40 successive Tour de France starts, management still remembers how the team burst sensationally onto the Tour scene. Its first participation, in 1983, ended with Ángel Arroyo as runner-up to Laurent Fignon! It also scored a fabulous one-two in the Puy de Dôme time trial, where the other rider was Pedro Delgado, who would go on to become the third Spanish Tour de France champion in 1988, following in the footsteps of Federico Bahamontes and Luis Ocaña.

Then, the Banesto bank took over from the Reynolds aluminium company and Miguel Indurain filled Delgado's shoes. The Navarrese, a home-grown rider who remained loyal to the team until he retired on 2 January 1997, came to epitomise Spanish cycling. Echavarri and Unzué tried to keep the good times rolling by signing Abraham Olano and Alejandro Valverde, both of whom managed to win the Vuelta a España but not the Tour de France, where all they got was stage wins. However, fate came up with a curious and utterly incredible way of bringing the yellow jersey back to Navarre when, in 2006, the peloton gifted Óscar Pereiro half an hour in a breakaway after he had conceded 26 minutes in the Pyrenees.

Under its various avatars as Illes Balears, Caisse d'Épargne and Movistar, the Spanish Armada has stood the test of time and rarely left the Grande Boucle empty-handed. In 2012, Valverde seized his eleventh-hour opportunity in the Pyrenees by winning the stage to Peyragudes. After a near-miss in 2014, he finally stepped onto the podium for the first time in 2015, at the ripe age of 35, taking third place, while Nairo Quintana repeated his 2013 exploit to finish second. The Colombian got onto the podium again in 2016 (third) but floundered in 2017 (twelfth), the same year Valverde crashed out of the race in the opening time trial in Düsseldorf.

Movistar is the sole survivor of the Spanish cycling scene, which has been in decline since Alberto Contador hung up his bicycle in late 2017. It again proved its mettle in the Grande Boucle in 2018, 2019 and 2020, taking two mountain stages with Quintana as well as the team classification, but failing to make an impact on the fight for the podium as it spread its resources among three riders instead of focusing on a single leader. Mikel Landa, Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde came in seventh, tenth and fourteenth in 2018, respectively, and sixth, eighth and ninth in 2019. Enric Mas, touted rightly or wrongly as the new Contador, finished fifth in 2020 as Valverde dropped to twelfth place. Miguel Ángel López, the star signing of 2021, was a huge flop. This, combined with Valverde's retirement, pushed the Pamplona-based structure, which has often taken the team classification as a consolation prize, to bet the farm on Enric Mas (sixth in 2021). He did not live up to expectations last year, sitting in eleventh place when a positive COVID-19 test result knocked him out of the race, but he bounced back to finish as the runner-up to Remco Evenepoel in the Vuelta. Carlos Verona's third-place finish in Châtel-Portes du Soleil did little to lift the spirits of the "Cable Boys". Beyond Mas, the team is pinning its hopes on the American Matteo Jorgenson, who has won the Tour of Oman, took eighth in Paris–Nice and came second in the Tour de Romandie this season.

  • Final victories7
  • Stages victories34
  • Yellows Jerseys79
  • Other race Won0

Overall wins: 7
- 1988: Pedro Delgado
- 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995: Miguel Indurain
- 2006: Óscar Pereiro (following the disqualification of Floyd Landis)

Podium finishes: 7
- 1983: Ángel Arroyo, second
- 1989: Pedro Delgado, third
- 1999: Alex Zülle, second
- 2013: Nairo Quintana, second
- 2015: Nairo Quintana, second, and Alejandro Valverde, third
- 2016: Nairo Quintana, third

Stage wins: 34
- 1983: Ángel Arroyo on the Puy de Dôme (ITT)
- 1984: Ángel Arroyo in Morzine
- 1985: Eduardo Chozas in Aurillac
- 1986: Julián Gorospe in Saint-Étienne
- 1988: Pedro Delgado in Villard-de-Lans (ITT)
- 1989: Miguel Indurain in Cauterets
- 1990: Miguel Indurain at Luz-Ardiden
- 1991: Miguel Indurain in Alençon (ITT) and Mâcon (ITT)
- 1992: Miguel Indurain in San Sebastián (prologue), Luxembourg (ITT) and Blois (ITT)
- 1993: Miguel Indurain in Puy-du-Fou (prologue) and Lac de Madine (ITT)
- 1994: Miguel Indurain in Bergerac (ITT)
- 1995: Miguel Indurain in Seraing (ITT) and Lac de Vassivière (ITT)
- 1997: Abraham Olano in Eurodisney (ITT)
- 2000: Vicente García Acosta in Draguignan
- 2003: Juan Antonio Flecha in Toulouse and Pablo Lastras in Saint-Maixent-L'École
- 2005: Alejandro Valverde at Courchevel
- 2008: Alejandro Valverde in Plumelec and Super-Besse and Luis León Sánchez in Aurillac
- 2009: Luis León Sánchez in Saint-Girons
- 2011: Rui Costa at Super-Besse
- 2012: Alejandro Valverde at Peyragudes
- 2013: Rui Costa in Gap and Le Grand-Bornand and Nairo Quintana in Annecy-Le Semnoz
- 2016: Ion Izagirre in Morzine
- 2018: Nairo Quintana in Saint-Lary-Soulan/Col du Portet
- 2019: Nairo Quintana in Valloire

Secondary classification wins: 13
- 1991: team classification
- 1999: team classification
- 2000: Francisco Mancebo (best young rider)
- 2003: Denis Menchov (best young rider)
- 2004: Vladimir Karpets (best young rider)
- 2013: Nairo Quintana (mountains classification and best young rider)
- 2015: Nairo Quintana (best young rider) and team classification
- 2016: team classification
- 2018: team classification
- 2019: team classification
- 2020: team classification

Yellow jerseys: 79
- 1988: Pedro Delgado, eleven days
- 1991: Miguel Indurain, ten days
- 1992: Miguel Indurain, ten days
- 1993: Miguel Indurain, fourteen days
- 1994: Miguel Indurain, thirteen days
- 1995: Miguel Indurain, thirteen days
- 2006: Óscar Pereiro, six days
- 2008: Alejandro Valverde, two days

STARTS: 40 (since 1983)

60: the number of days spent by Miguel Indurain in yellow.

16 July 1983: in its very first appearance in the race, the Reynolds team scores a one-two in the 15.6 km time trial from Clermont-Ferrand to the Puy de Dôme with rookies Ángel Arroyo (runner-up to Laurent Fignon in Paris) and Pedro Delgado.
19 July 1991: the defending champion, Greg LeMond, crumbles in the last kilometre of the Tourmalet and Miguel Indurain takes the first step towards his maiden win after a screaming descent with Claudio Chiappuci.
15 July 2006: the Tour is turned on its head. Having finished the Pla de Beret stage 26 minutes down on the winner, Óscar Pereiro takes the yellow jersey by finishing second in Montélimar, 29′57″ ahead of the bunch.

Follow us

Receive exclusive news about the Tour