Nairo Quintana to start season in San Luis alongside younger brother

World number one team Movistar also name strong line-up for Tour Down Under

Climbing sensation Nairo Quintana will ride alongside his younger brother Dayer for the first time as Movistar team-mates, after both were selected for Movistar’s Tour de San Luis Team.

The older Quintana brother will be looking to kickstart his preparations for next year’s Grand Tours, with reports suggesting the Tour de France runner-up is preparing an assault on the Giro d’Italia, which rolls out in Belfast on Friday May 9.

Tour de France runner-up Nairo Quintana – who also sealed the white and polka dot jerseys with this victory on Mont Semnoz – will start his 2014 season alongside his younger brother (pic: Sirotti)

And 21-year-old Dayer will make his debut for the Spanish team as one of his brother’s lieutenants in Argentina.

They will start their season battling the mountain-heavy course in San Luis, as part of a strong line-up also featuring Fran Ventoso, key climbing domestique Andrey Amador, former Lampre-Merida man Adriano Malori and Tour of Beijing winner Benat Intxausti.

Intxausti’s win in the ‘Red Dragon’ helped Movistar top the 2013 UCI WorldTour team rankings, and the Spanish team have also named a strong line-up to start the defence of their title at the Tour Down Under.

Javier Moreno – who topped the mountains classification on his way to second in this year’s race in Australia – will lead the team with a heavy Spanish presence in his support squad.

New signing Juan Jose Lobato, who has joined from the now-defunct Euskaltel-Euskadi team, will make his debut while Imanol Erviti, Ivan Gutierrez, Ruben Plaza and Jose Joaquin Rojas are also selected.

Giovanni Visconti, the only non-Spaniard on the team, winner of two stages at this year’s Giro d’Italia, completes the line-up.

Moreno’s bid to go one step better than last year will see him competing with Richie Porte and Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) for the overall title, as the British team look to score an early victory against the team which pipped them to the world number one spot this year.

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