Basque climber Mikel Landa will not start the Vuelta a España which starts on 25 August in Málaga due to injury, his Movistar Team has announced.
The team confirmed that he is “struggling with pain after the fractures sustained at a crash in Clásica San Sebastián. Combined with the blows suffered at a previous crash on stage nine of the Tour de France, the Spaniard’s current health situation has advised against his entry in the eight-man roster.”
Two former winners of the race, Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde, headline the Movistar Team roster which is completed by Andrey Amador, Winner Anacona, Daniele Bennati, Richard Carapaz, Imanol Erviti and Nelson Oliveira.
“We’ve fought the hardest we could during the last 15 days, trying to make sure Mikel could reach a high degree of recovery, but it wasn’t possible,” explains the Movistar Team’s general manager Eusebio Unzué. “He’s gone through good and bad moments during these two weeks, but in the end, and at the time we had to make a choice, he just doesn’t have sufficient guarantees to go and take the start of the Vuelta.”
“Pain in the lumbar zone of his back after the fracture, added to the two broken ribs he suffered in San Sebastián, have combined to make it unfeasible to go to Málaga with the health and fitness he needed. We will now focus on making sure he recovers completely, and after that, we’ll evaluate if he feels fit enough to take the start of the Tour of Britain. It’s an eight-day competition, and it’s also a very intense race. If he’s able to race there, we think he might gain the form he needs so he can be eligible for the Spanish national team in the World Championships.”
“We want to enormously thank everybody at Deportivo Alavés, and most notably Dr. Javier Barrio, for offering their services and facilities to Mikel so he could carry out his rehabilitation and giving him all of their support, as well as Dr. Mikel Sánchez and the Advanced Physiotherapy Unit, for always following and supporting his progress closely.”