Place 23 - Jonathan Monsalve
Type of Rider: Climber
Biggest achievement: Stage win in Giro della Valle d'Aosta Mont Blanc 2010
Team: Mastromarco Chianti Sensi Benedetti
Team 2011: Androni
Best Mock List Rank: new
South America booms! While in 2008 a Costa Rican was as South American as it got in the Mock list, 2009 there were Columbians who made it into this elitist ranking. This year it is still Columbia that is booming, as two riders from Columbia made it into the Top Ten. Apart from that an Argentine and two Venezuelans are listed as well.
For years Venezuelan cycling was mainly represented by José Rujano. He is flanked by his two Venezuelan team mates at Androni Carlos Ochoa and last year’s Mock listed Venezuelan Jackson Rodriguez. Jonathan Monsalve will join these guys next year, if they are still in the team by then. As for Monsalve, he has his contract signed and sealed!
Monsalve is in his third year as an Under 23 rider. Even in his first year he showed good beginnings. Back hen he showed that the label of a “climber” doesn’t really stick. He was 10th at the Vuelta a Venezuela (2.2), but also took 3 top five places in sprint stages. At the Clasico Banfoandes (2.2) he did the same even four times. Even if Venezuelans aren’t known for their speed, these results prove sprinting abilities.
In his second year as an Under 23 rider, he confirmed the results of the year before and added widely to his palmeres. His best race by far was the Vuelta al Tachira (2.2) in his home country in January. He won two stages, one even in a sprint. Only on stages 4 and 11 the then 19-year old missed out on the Top 10. On stage 4 he wore the leader’s jersey and in the final classification he reached third!
Then he did what now adds to the above mentioned boom of South American cycling: he went to Italy to prove himself against the Europeans. He joined the Mastromarco Team and placed second in June in a sprint at the Coppa Colli Briantei (1.2) and third in the first and difficult stage of the Baby-Giro (2.2). He was nominated for the World Championship, same as the year before, but each time didn’t finish the race.
This year he didn’t improve greatly. But still, he confirmed the achievements of the years before. He added more consistency and more European results. For him, the 2010 season started as the year before in Venezuela at the Vuelta al Tachira (2.2). This year he missed the Top 10 in only 3 stages, but could win stage 7. He finished the tour that was won by prototype-Venezuelan José Rujano, in 8th position overall. Like in 2009, he continued with the Mastromarco Team, this time with a lot of consistency and class; 4th in the medium-difficult Torfeo Balestra (1.2), 8th in a mass-sprint at the Trofeo Piva Banca Popolare di Vicenza (1.2U), 15th at the medium-difficult Under 23 “summit-meeting” La Côte Picarde (1.NC), 5th at Italy’s most prestigious Under 23 race, the GP Liberazione (1.2U).
Wins came only in June at the GiroBio (2.2). After finishing 3rd in a three-man-sprint at the first difficult mountain stage behind Columbians Betancourt and Beltran Suarez, he won stage 8 by dropping his teammate Antionio Santoro on the short final climb, finishing solo.
He narrowly missed out on another victory and the champion’s jersey at the End of June at the Venezuelan championships, as he had to give way to José Alirio Contreras in a ten-man-sprint.
Even without the champion’s jersey he continued his winning streak in Italy. At the Giro della Valle d’Aosta Mont Blanc (2.2) he went on a breakaway in the second difficult stage and dropped all his breakaway companions. Thomas Bonnin came back to him, also Novikov came to the front group from the peleton, but in the final sprint the 20 year old won with ease.
So he could secure three fully fledged UCI victories in 2010.
At the World Championships Monsalve will form a very strong team with Alarcon. And no doubt next year the South Americans again will show strong efforts to the increased attention of the cycling audience.
nominated by ocana & ogkempf, written by ogkempf, translated by bugno