Hailing from the Basque Country of Northern Spain, Haimar Zubeldia, 39, has claimed the position of oldest rider in the WorldTour for 2017. He has lined up in the Tour de France 15 times, finishing an impressive five times in the top 10. In last year’s Tour, he again provided crucial support to Bauke Mollema in the mountains and the signing of Alberto Contador to the team has motivated Haimar to ride for at least one more season. His experience is vast, perhaps only topped by his tenacity and grit - for the second consecutive year he has completed both the Tour de France and Vuelta a España.
Haimar first turned pro in 1997 with Euskaltel-Euskadi where he remained for 11 years before joining Astana in 2009 and RadioShack in 2010, riding alongside both Alberto Contador and Lance Armstrong. He is excited to ride in support of Alberto again, giving the veteran cyclist extra incentive for next year.
After years of racing for the overall classification, Haimar has become a crucial support rider to the team’s GC leaders. His personal ambitions have turned into helping his teammates and to seeking out stage wins when given the green light. In 2015, Haimar narrowly missed claiming a huge win in stage 18 of the Vuelta a España after jumping into a long breakaway and surviving with one other, only to be out-sprinted to the line.
Haimar is methodical in his preparation, paying attention to the small details in his training and personal care. If there was one thing he could change it would be to be more aggressive in races; many times he considers his approach too quiet and relaxed.
Haimar spends all his time off the bike with his two daughters and wife. He lives near teammate Markel Irizar, who is like a younger brother, and often the two can be found on the Basque roads training together.