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Nairo Quintana will keep chasing his “yellow jersey dream” in an Arkéa-Samsic jersey.
Despite rumors of offers from UAE Team Emirates or a return to Movistar, the Colombian star penned a three-year deal to stay with the French team that’s poised to jump into the WorldTour in 2023.
Quintana said the team is like “family,” and that he didn’t forget how team manager Emmanuel Hubert reached out to him during a troubled 2019 season for the Movistar rider at the end of his contract.
“[Hubert] reached out to me at the end of 2019. And I haven’t forgotten him,” Quintana said in a team statement. “The team has grown since I joined it, and it continues to do so.
“The overall level of the Arkéa-Samsic team has continued to evolve. The team continues to grow,” he said. “I very quickly had the conviction that I still had great sporting challenges to take up in the Arkéa-Samsic jersey and that our beautiful shared history initiated between since 2020 could only continue.”
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The French second-tier team surprised many when it signed Quintana in 2020, along with other WorldTour pros like Warren Barguil and Nacer Bouhanni, but Hubert had a longer view on the team’s future that included a run at the WorldTour.
With Quintana’s successes, especially this season, the team is poised to secure a new, three-year WorldTour license going into 2023.
“A demanding leader, Nairo is also a man with strong human values. He is simply the image of our team. He is a leader capable of transmitting, which thus allows the whole group to cross levels,” Hubert said. “This was particularly the case on the roads of the 2022 Tour, which he finished in sixth. A man of such quality is a strong asset within a collective, especially for the youngest. Indeed, in contact with him, they measure all the involvement to be implemented in order to perform at the highest level.”
Quintana will be racing the Vuelta a España this month in an Arkéa-Samsic jersey for the first time in what’s his return to the Vuelta since 2019.