The Tour de France without my brother
They train together, live next to each other and work for the same cycling team. But for this year's Tour de France, the two Gutierrez brothers go their separate ways. Jos? Enrique Gutierrez is part of Phonak?s Tour team, while Ignacio will focus on the Vuelta.
It means a lot to Enrique and Ignacio to be riding for the same team. For as long as they both can remember, they've done everything together. They continuously offer each other moral support. Especially on the less than good days. Jos? Enrique Gutierrez is often able to give his younger brother tips. Likewise, he benefits from having a very good and reliable training partner in his brother.
For once, however, Ignacio is not Jos? Enrique Gutierrez's roommate at the Tour. "I'll miss him," the elder of the Gutierrez brothers admits. But he's not sad that both of them weren't picked to compete in the Tour de France. "Ignacio rode the Giro and will ride in the Vuelta. That's pretty good for him, and he's very happy about that. Also, we know that we're riding for one of the strongest teams in the world."
A cycling family
Even the Gutierrez parents are big sports enthusiasts. They have their own cycling shop but try, whenever possible, to attend their sons' races. There's a third brother, in addition to Jos? Enrique and Ignacio, who's also a professional rider. He's under contract with an Andalusian team. No wonder the parents, their five sons and one daughter - whom all five brothers look after and adore - often discuss cycling at the lunch table. "But not only that," Enrique Gutierrez stresses.
Enrique also has his own family to consider. Wife Feli, their son Ivan, but also his dog Dino. Gutierrez is devoted to him: "When I take walks with him, I can relax. In winter, I go to the mountains with him now and then." Kike, as Gutierrez is called by his teammates, likes all animals. "They're just very affectionate." In addition to his dog Dino, he also has seven turtles at home.
A harmonious team in his sixth Tour
This year's Tour de France is the sixth for the 31-year-old Spaniard. Jos? Enrique Gutierrez is convinced that Phonak has a very tight-knit team that is well-balanced. In the coming weeks, he wants to do his best for the team and support the leaders Floyd Landis, Oscar Pereiro and Santiago Botero the best he can.
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