Euskaltel-Euskadi is a UCI pro cycling team hailing from my family’s homeland in the Pyrenees mountains. The Basque folk are known mostly as shepherds [occasionally as terrorists], and live on the border betwixt France and Spain.
Euskaltel has the honor of the smallest pro cycling team budget on the planet. Two years ago they were nearly bankrupt – so the fans took up a collection to keep them solvent.
This would be their other distinctive honor.
I really like this team. They’re the underdog that shows up to most every race and rarely wins. The one conspicuous exception was Sammy Sanchez who won the [you guessed – it!] Tour of the Basque Country this year. Sanchez is a legendary climber who rides more for glory than a paycheck. In keeping with it’s namesake, this tour was too small to have its own website.
You have to love these guys: heroes of a small region tucked into western Spain as an afterthought. And so, when I ride an event that’s a bit intimidating…
I wear my Euskaltel jersey.
Everyone should have one.