Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
DANZHOU, China (VN) —Brayan Chaves, the 21-year-old younger bother of Esteban Chaves, is easing into cycling with the dream of winning the Giro d’Italia one day.
Chaves this summer stepped up from the continental ranks of Team Mitchelton-BikeExchange to race in the parent WorldTour team Mitchelton-Scott. He just finished the Japan Cup with the big team, including race winner Robert Power, before coming to the Tour of Hainan.
On China’s resort island of Hainan and for the 2019 season, Chaves continues to race for continental team Mitchelton-BikeExchange.
“Some guys are really strong. Examples like Egan Bernal. He’s ready now for the WorldTour,” Chaves told VeloNews.
Bernal, 21, raced the Tour de France and worked for his Sky teammate and eventual winner Geraint Thomas.
“Some guys have the talent. We need to work a lot, we have work to do. We will see in a couple of years what happens. There are some exceptions, like these guys.”
The Australian team, like it has with the Yates bothers and Chaves’s older brother, decided to develop Brayan Chaves slowly.
“It’s one way to see the things,” Chaves said. “If you have slow development, you can go for many years. It’s another way of looking at it.”
Chaves raced in the U.S. in the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and the Colorado Classic with the WorldTour team, working for Jack Haig and Damien Howson. He and the team were after experience, not results.
The same went in the recent Japan Cup, which ended two days before the Tour of Hainan started.
“I did the Tour of Utah and Colorado. It was cool and an incredible experience and I’m happy,” Chaves said with the same welcoming smile as his older bother.
“I finished the Japan Cup and now we are in Hainan. I’m a bit tired, but happy that we have eight days ahead of us. We are going to take it day-by-day.
“The guys taught me what to do, some things that you can use here. It was a very good experience. To keep the calm, especially. When you have a stage about 200km, you need to keep clam.
“In the Continental scene, you have 150km maybe but now have 230 or 240km. It’s about keeping calm, keeping eating and drinking.
“I have many things to work on, resistance, to be stronger, more competition days. There are so many things to do. It’s step-by-step.”
Chaves keeps count. His older brother, 28, has raced eight grand tours and has won four stages, two each in the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España.
“It’s really fun to train with him because it’s always full-gas with him. On the flats we can go together but on the climbs there’s no chance for me, but he teaches me so much. I’m always happy to train with him,” Chaves continued.
“I live in Italy. I have a really special connection with Italy. I live in Gavirate in the north. It’s close to Switzerland.
“My dream is to win the Giro d’Italia. I’m always dreaming of that and every day thinking of that. That’s the dream.”