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Samuel Sanchez signs for BMC Racing

Spain's 2008 Olympic road champion said last week he'd retire if he didn't find a new team...

Samuel Sanchez, who last week said he would retire if he couldn’t find a team for the 2014 season, has signed for BMC Racing.

The 2008 Olympic road champion, who comes from Asturias in northwest Spain, has spent his entire professional career at Euskaltel-Euskadi, which folded at the end of last season.

The 35-year-old won the mountains jersey in the 2011 Tour de France, a race won by his new team-mate, Cadel Evans.

He was promoted to third in the 2010 edition of the race after Alberto Contador was stripped of the title, the overall victory instead going to Andy Schleck, and in 2009 Sanchez was runner-up to Alejandro Valverde in the Vuelta.

He has also finished second on four occasions in two of the sport’s biggest one-day races – the Flèche Wallonne in 2006, and Il Lombardia in 2006, 2009 and 2012.

BMC Racing’s president and general manager Jim Ochowicz said: "Sammy will add a high degree of skill and experience to the BMC Racing Team.

“He can cover all the bases, but in particular, we look forward to having him support his new teammates in the Ardennes classics and at the grand tours."

Sanchez added: "I feel like a rider who has just earned his first contract.

"I want to thank the entire BMC Racing Team, especially Andy Rihs and Jim Ochowicz, for welcoming me into one of the most prominent teams of the WorldTour.

“It is my hope that I can share my experience with the younger riders on the team.

“And after riding so many years to beat Cadel Evans, it will be good to help him since he is a rider I know very well," he added.

No details of Sanchez’s contract, including its duration, have been released.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Crimea03 | 10 years ago

Speaking of his old now defunct team, sad to see no one will be riding Orcas.

stenmeister | 10 years ago

I'm glad Sanchez has a team but although he has been a leader at Euskatel, I don't think he can just come in assume leadership.

I think they will use his experience, not for his success but to further the ambitions of the younger riders like Van Garderen and Phinney.

Ghedebrav | 10 years ago

Yet another leader at BMC. Struggling to see who on their team even qualifies as a domestique (though I suppose talk - presumably through gritted teeth - of 'helping' Cadel puts him in the super-domestique role).

Given that Evans is after the Giro, guessing Samu will be targetting... what? A stage at the Tour maybe? Fair enough for taking a contract, but BMC's recruitment policy baffles me.

Tripod16 | 10 years ago

It's great having Sammy racing with the big boys and not retiring too early. Love his attacks in the mountains.

MartyMcCann | 10 years ago

The space was obviously freed up with Ballan's sacking- see, every cloud has a golden lining!

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