ALREADY A ‘MAN IN M’. 2024 marks the start of Iván García Cortina’s second three-year term with the Telefónica ‘m’ on his chest and back. Even though he’s always been described -and the proved so again last year: 5th in Harelbeke, top-20 in Flanders- as one of Spain’s best talents for the cobblestones, ‘Corti’ is well more than that. He’s someone able to excel at certain kinds of sprints, especially those coming after harder climbs, and one who’s taking significant steps towards sporting maturity, now aged 28.
VICTORIES AGAINST THE VERY BEST. Cortina left his mark in 2020, few months before joining the Movistar Team, with a brilliant performance in Paris-Nice, where he won one of the race’s bunch sprint in La Châtre -against Sagan, Bol, Bouhanni or Nizzolo-, and came 2nd just few days later, only behind attacker Niccolò Bonifazio. It was his second WorldTour success after a stage of the 2019 Tour of California, where he kept the pace of a short, 20-rider group before raising his arms victorious in Ventura. In 2022, the Gijón-born sprinter claimed his first victory in the Telefónica-backed squad’s jersey at the Italian race Gran Piemonte, with a sensational sprint at the end of a tough race with spits and echelons.
NOT A CONVENTIONAL START. Even if he did ride in our country for most of his youth stage -a member of the prestigious Las Mestas feeder squads-, Iván always had in mind that the key for his development, being a type of rider not that usual in Spain, would only be found across the border. He signed, aged just 19, with the development squad of the current Deceuninck team, where he had a chance to race at events all over the continent, from Portugal to Slovakia, gathering experience, learning how to ride in the peloton, finetuning his technique and strategy skills (plus obtaining many good results and even his first UCI win, at the Polish event Course de Solidarnosc). When he took the step towards the WorldTour with Bahrain in 2017, he wasn’t only one of our most experienced riders abroad: he was also one of the best known athletes from Spain by his foreign rivals.
2021-23: Movistar Team
2015-16: Klein Constantia