In 2022 the Fundación Alberto Contador will face its tenth season with a team in the U19 category. Ten years, some more really, of underground work to get the project up and running, in which we have never stopped trying to give back to cycling the much that it has given my brother Alberto throughout his career. We love this sport above all things and we could not conceive of being present in cycling without having a team in the U19 category. Cycling is a diverse sport, with many points of view about what it has to be and many ways of approaching it. They are all legitimate. They are all part of the whole. They all add up. And only in this way will youth cycling be more robust and strong enough to bring it closer to the reality of the sport, for this category, in today’s times.
We work to help this sport to advance in some aspects, with the firm intention of adding up, and we fight every day so that the kids have the best material and human resources in the fight to achieve the dream of becoming professional riders. We help them. We do not promise them the impossible. And every year, both at the Selection Camp and at the meeting we hold with the families, we always emphasise both the difficulty of the company and the importance of not abandoning their studies. We help them so that they can continue to progress in that dream, a dream that is complicated to fulfil and that is not exclusive to going through our structure. Being a professional is very difficult. We are going to be people throughout our lives.
The 2021 season did not get off to an easy start, with multiple postponements and suspensions. It wasn’t until the spring was well into the season that the calendar got up to cruising speed. At that point, this ‘new normality’ was experienced with a certain normality in the development of the races.
The Fundación Alberto Contador was launched with two main objectives, the fight against stroke and the promotion of cycling and the promotion of cycling as a sport. Both objectives overlap, as practising sport is also the best way to prevent the disease. On this path, there are several riders who have reached professional level after passing through our structure and carrying our message. Álvaro Cuadros, Fernando Barceló, Diego Pablo Sevilla, Enric Mas, Juan Pedro López, Carlos Rodríguez, Sergio García, Alejandro Ropero, Joan Martí Bennassar, Álex Martín… A list that continues to grow and that would have been impossible thanks to the work and commitment of all the people who in one way or another have worked with us so far. To all of them, always our thanks and our consideration.
For the Alberto Contador Foundation, a fundamental objective is the comprehensive training of young people through the practice of cycling, transmitting the necessary sporting knowledge, providing them with the material means to train in the best conditions and, perhaps most importantly, instilling values such as honesty, companionship, respect and sacrifice, which are the backbone of our project. Nor can we forget solidarity, which is embodied in the Bikes for Life by ŠKODA project, integration, embodied in our new Idemticos project, or education, with the En Bici project as a great standard-bearer.
Regards and health!
Francisco Javier Contador