Star Power on Starting Grid for 2018 GCL Championship Race

Star Power on Starting Grid for 2018 GCL Championship Race

The new line up of 19 GCL teams for the start of the 2018 season can be revealed today, featuring the biggest names in the sport.

During an intense off-season period team owners and managers have been battling to sign up star strikers and talented youngsters to boost their firepower for the third year of the GCL. This year a guaranteed overall season prize purse of €35 million will be paid out to the world’s best individual and team riders. This includes €12 million to be shared at the spectacular new GC Prague Play Offs in Prague in December from 13th – 16th.

16 action-packed events in the regular season will culminate in the team and individual finals at Doha, Qatar, this November. And this year, the pressure will be more intense than ever in the battle to earn a golden ticket to the GC Prague Play Offs.

This year’s power-packed GCL sees 90% of athletes (excluding the U25 competitors) ranked in the top 250* in the world, including 25 out of the top 30 riders. And 25% of the total athletes taking part in the GCL this season are aged U25.

The Madrid in Motion team can boast of having some of the best riders in the world. Among which are:

Maikel van der Vleuten (30) – This Dutch rider can boast of having a medal in major competitions. He has been a silver medal team in the Olympic Games in London, gold in the last World Championships and gold in the 2015 European Championship. Due to a hand injury a few weeks ago he has descended from the top ten, placing himself right now # 11 in the world. Verdi and Arera C will be your great assets for the most important appointments.

Eduardo Álvarez Aznar (34) – Spanish Olympic rider who will attend the final of the World Cup in Paris in a few weeks. It occupies the position 74 of the international ranking and has participated in Olympic Games, World Championship and European Championships. His horse Rokfeller of Pleville Bois Margot “Rocky” will be his secret weapon this season.

Marc Houtzager (47) – Among the most important titles of Houtzager stands out the silver medal in the London Olympics. Serel 57 of the world is due, among other things, thanks to its dominance and regularity in the competition track, and that is that many years have been competing at the highest level.

Eric van der Vleuten (54) – Father of Maikel and with great international experience, Eric has participated in World Championships, in European Championships and in seven finals of the World Cup. During a great season he has dedicated himself to training riders and the Spanish team. A year ago he returned to high competition and is achieving great results with Wunschkind 19 and Zigali P S.

Michael G Duffy (21) – This young Irishman started competing at international level at the age of 16 at CSI2* level and represented Ireland for the first time in 2013 during the CSIO Junior of Hagen, finishing second in the Grand Prix. He then participated at his first European Championship as Individual of the Junior Team the same year. Since 2015, Michael is a regular on the Irish Team for the European Championship and brought back two team Medals, one of which was Gold in the European Young Riders Championship of Millstreet in 2016. Michael competed in his first ever 5* event at Longines Global Champions Tour of Hamburg in 2015.

A great team that counts on the support of Massimo Dutti and Marqués de Riscal as main sponsors.

For the full team list, please click here.