Joan Martí Bennassar, the ‘veteran’ of the U23 team of the Alberto Contador Foundation: “It’s a responsibility”
With the departure of the Andalusian Sergio García or Alejandro Ropero to the Kometa-Xstra Cycling Team and the non-continuation of the Galician Alejandro Regueiro or the Madrid Carlos García, the Balearic Joan Martí Bennassar has become the ‘veteran’ of the u23 team of the Alberto Contador Foundation. Two years in the youth team and about to start the third year in the amateur formation reinforce the experience of a Jonny, as he is known amicably, who stands out for the great work, as fundamental as unnoticed, that he deploys during each season. A powerful cyclist, with a great plant on the bike with many possibilities in the velodromes.
“Yes, in the last concentration I realized that I have become the most veteran in the sense that I am the longest. There are colleagues who will start their fourth year in the U23 category, but in terms of consecutive years within the Foundation I am the most. In the end it is a responsibility. You know better how to work in the Foundation both with the youngsters and with the u23, the people who are part of it… But the fact that I am the oldest does not mean that I have a more defined role than other colleagues. I am a time trialist, a good rider, but in Spain there are few flat races and less and less prologues against the clock. That’s why it’s important to work in favour of our climbing partners or the orders we receive from the team. Working for our team-mates, positioning them, giving the team a presence in the breaks and always being ready in case the break comes,” reflects Bennassar.
The cyclist from Marratxí, bronze medalist in the last two Nationals of the discipline, has been observing a decline in the stages against the clock in the category, already very testimonial in Spain and especially focused on the first stages of several laps by stages: “In 2018 there were more prologues and team times, but already during this 2019 have been proposed less. For a rider with my profile it is certainly not good news, it is not something that benefits me. I hope that in 2020 they will come back. In the end the Spanish championship will always be there, which is always a goal. And I hope that the time trial of the Volta a Valencia continues, that offers a very good distance and by itself it becomes an objective in which we cannot center. The time trials will be the area where more I can shine from a more personal prism, but always continuing with the work in favor of the team, as these years”.
One of the best moments of the last two years, in terms of life experience, has been participating in the Challenge of Mallorca in the colours of the Spanish team. In 2018, in his first year as u23, he took part in a stage. In 2019 he faced all four, finishing in two. Looking ahead to 2020, although the Spanish team was initially expected to be present, it would not be possible to take part in the home leg. “I consider myself fortunate to have been able to enjoy that experience. It’s a shame that this coming year will not be able to be. After the signing of Albert Torres and Sebastian Mora by Movistar, the coach told us that the national team has finally decided not to go with the team he had in mind. For the young people this participation was a prize, especially because it is very difficult to make a result because of the high competition. And in the end, above all, the contribution he has in terms of experience,” concludes a Mallorcan whose younger brother Francesc will run again this season in the junior team of the Alberto Contador Foundation.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)