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Ukralstatt - PCT21 Los Pollos Hermanos
Hello to all and welcome to the 2021 HQ for newly promoted PCT squad Los Pollos Hermanos - Galapagos. That's right, Los Pollos Hermanos has decided to stay on as main sponsor of your favourite South American team! Even greater news is that they extended their contract with two years at once, ensuring us a nice check both in the 2021 and 2022 season. Don't change a winning team is a well known sports philosophy, but we decided to take that one step further. Don't change a winning jersey is our 2021 motto (what's a motto? Nothing, what's a motto with you? yeet), so here it is once again, the_hoyle's lovely and easily recognizable Los Pollos Hermanos kit!



Nevertheless, a new division meant we still needed some extra dough. We love the Latin American market, but as team manager Nemolito is based in Belgium and is afraid of flying, it couldn't hurt to have a Belgian co-sponsor. They might have been lacking a bit on the stock exchange recently, but we are still proud to announce Galapagos as our co-sponsor! They signed a contract of three years with the team, and we really hope they don't go bankrupt by then. The Belgian/Dutch medical research company will allow us to sign some talents and/or more established riders from Belgium. (Not that this didn't happen last season already). As the default jersey won't change, we made a special arrangement with the medical company. Every national champion we (will) have will be riding in a Galapagos NC kit, made by fellow Latin American team manager DarkWolf. The Galapagos green and orange combined with the national flag will definitely make our nc's stand out. Both Galapagos and manager Nemolito would like to express their gratitude to DarkWolf once again!
Edited by Nemolito on 06-12-2021 12:15
Wins 2021 season

Matti Manninen - Tour Down Under (HC) - Stages 1 and 2 + points

Other decent results

Matti Manninen - Tour Down Under (HC) - 2nd GC
Simon Spilak - Hong Kong Challenge (C1) - 10th GC
Dion Beukeboom - Vuelta al Tachira (C2) - 2nd stage 10
Daniel Munoz - Vuelta al Tachira (C2) - 3rd U25
Roman Maksimov - Volta a Portugal (PTHC) - 3rd stage 2


Wins 2020 season

Carlos Alexandre Manarelli - Vuelta Al Tachira (C2) - stage 2
Stefan Petrovski - Vuelta al Tachira (C2) - stage 8 + KoM
Jerome Baugnies - 1 Jour de Dunkerque (C2)
Jerome Baugnies - Tour du Faso (C2HC) - Stage 3 + GC
Matala Seboka - Giro del Trentino (C2) - Stage 3 + 1st points
Marco GuillΓ©n - Tour de San Luis (C2) - Stage 8
Carlos Alexandre Manarelli - Tour de Vineyards (C2) - stage 4
Matala Seboka - Tour d'Andorra (C1) - KoM
Marco GuillΓ©n - Euskal Bizikleta (C2HC) - Stage 1
Jerome Baugnies - Lillestrom GP (C2)
Jerome Baugnies - GP Kigali (C2)
Edited by Nemolito on 26-11-2021 09:32
It's quite simple. Old riders were getting worse and they asked too much, so didn't keep those. Seboka was a legend, but he can be a legend elsewhere now. Most of the guys I kept were regional talents, when it comes to scoring points next season, Sterbini should be most useful in PCT, although he should also not score too much. We got more than two million euro's left on our wage cap to find our remaining riders, so I'm sure we can find someone useful on the FA market.

NatNameMain stats2020 wage2021 wageAvailable
Munoz D.77mt/71hi065kNo
Petrovski S.75 mt/73hi50k54kYes
Sterbini L.78tt/78pr50k53kNo
Quispe A.80fl50k50kYes (loan)
Ulloa J.69hi/73co50k50kNo
Osorio A.72mt/69hi80k50kNo
Ruiz R.74fl50k50kNo
Gonzales A.69mt/70hi050kMaybe

Los Pollos Hermanos management would once again like to thank Jerome Baugnies, Carlos Alexandre Manarelli, Matala Seboka, Florentino Marquez, Fulgencio Bru, Samuel Coronel, Marco GuillΓ©n, Romeo Quicibal, Vitalii Nowakowskyi and Diego Andres Camargo for a great season. Who knows, we might meet again.

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Posted on 07-12-2021 09:59
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Name keeps growing and so does my fondness for this team Grin
I warn you, sir, stay away from the Central American cyclists! Wink
That NC jersey looks really, really nice, if I can say so myself. Grin
The fellowship of the Continental Division

We did it! First season promotion! Before the 2020 season started we knew Jerome Baugnies should do very well in the Continental Division. Nevertheless, the way he outclassed the other cobblers, and even finished so high in the individual rankings while having less cobble racedays than mountain goats or puncheurs have their specialties in racedays, was outside of our own expectations. The Belgian was a massive help towards promoting, but neither can we forget the strong performances of Florentino Marquez and Marco GuillΓ©n. They all declined and asked for too much money, so we had to let them go.

In fact, only six riders from our 2020 roster remain today, at the end of the 2021 transfer window. The interesting news, thinking about the future of the Los Pollos Hermanos team, is that only one of them is maxed. Luca Sterbini still has some decent years left in him, whereas the other five that did not abandon the ship are all South American talents: Daniel Munoz, Robinson Steven Ruiz, Alejandro Osorio, Jose Gerardo Ulloa and absolute legend Alain Quispe.

Luca Sterbini 4.100 29y/o €53.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Daniel MuΓ±oz 4.56 25y/o €65.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Robinson Steven Ruiz 3.19 23y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Alejandro Osorio 3.14 23y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Jose Gerardo Ulloa 3.12 25y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Alain Quispe 4.01 27y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

The two sprinters

Promoting to PCT had us thinking about our strategy. We have loved cobbles since day 1 and will always keep on doing so, but focusing only on cobbles might not have been our best bet at trying to stay up in the 2021 season. Instead, having a strong first sprinter and a decent back up seemed like the way to go. So that is exactly what we went for and, in my humble opinion, achieved. Sprinter number one is no one less than Finnish superstar Matti Manninen. He has teared the PCT sprinter races apart last season, and if he could ensure like 75% of his points of the 2020 spell, he would make me a very happy manager. In addition to that we have also signed Russian champion Roman Maksimov, who was a decent second sprinter for MOL last season, and will hopefully do the same nice things for us, even though he has declined.

Matti Manninen 4.100 29y/o €400.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Roman Maksimov 4.100 33y/o €100.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

The return of the King

Ladies and gentleman, apples and pears, HE IS BACK! We would have loved to announce a more well known name coming back, but this man is also a king. Carlos Alexandre Manarelli, who ensured the team their first victory ever with a stage win in our home continent, during the Vuelta al Tachira in Venezuela, has signed another one year contract with the team. The Brazilian champion will not have a lot of opportunities to fight for his own results because of the two sprinters mentioned above, but we are nevertheless very proud to see him wearing our outfit once again.

Carlos Alexandre Manarelli 4.100 32y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

An unexpected journey

So we go for two sprinters, and then what? It was not an easy decision, as time was lacking to really scout the DB and prepare for the transfer season and the calendar planning. Marlen Zmorka did catch my attention, which wasn’t that hard being the second best time trialist in the game to be fair. We then decided for a β€˜Baugnies-approach’, going as high as we had to, to make sure the Ukrainian signed with us. That turned out to be 750,000 euro in the end, which is quite a sum. We do believe in Marlen a lot, and know that, if we stay in, we should be able to get his wage down and still enjoy his qualities for several years.

Manninen and Zmorka were two terrains covered, but we needed something more. We had the budget for a nice buy, and the rider we decided to go with in the end was noone else than MG legend Simon Spilak. The Slovenian had a terrible year last season in PT, and hopes he can redeem himself and make his name sound as terrifying as it used to by scoring us many points this season.

No cobbles leader was acquired this season, and looking at the strength of the PCT teams in the hills, we are not too unhappy that we didn’t sign a puncheur either. The closest thing to a puncheur we got from FA was the Japanese Wataru Mutsumine, who will be allowed to go KoM-hunting whenever he feels it is opportune to do so.

Both Zmorka and Spilak asked us to strenghten our TTT depth a bit, and we listened to them. We weren’t able to acquire any big names, but we hope Richard Laningo Laizer, Stelly Robert and Dion Beukeboom are able to help them out enough.

Marlen Zmorka 4.100 28y/o €750.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Simon Spilak 4.100 35y/o €530.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Wataru Mutsumine 4.100 29y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Richard Laningo Laizer 4.100 32y/o €55.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Robert Stelly 4.100 33y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Dion Beukeboom 4.100 32y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

The desolation of hopes and dreams

Not everything went as smoothly as we hoped during transfers, which is normal of course. For a moment we were hoping for a return of Baugnies, or a season with other MG legend Jan Bakelants. Both were too expensive for us though, which was not to the liking of our new Belgian co-sponsor. Luckily Galapagos is a half Dutch company, and we could shush them with the signing of Beukeboom. We also tried to go for our self found and suggested Cuban talent Cristian Perez, but Cristian sadly chose a lot of Carribean money over the love and chicken we could have offered him for years to come.

We then knocked on the doors of some fellow managers, trying to find riders to spend the season with us on no wage or close to that. It worked, so the next three riders will be riding for us for a combined wage of 10,000 euro in the 2021 season. Gjensidige’s Johan Iver Knotten will be a part of our TTT setup while gaining experience on a higher level, ISA – Hexacta’s Murilo Affonso will be an allround domestique in the mountains as well as the timetrials, and GCN x Eurosport’s Oumaru Minoungou will …

We don’t know what he will do exactly, but he’ll do it with passion, and that is what really counts.

i.imgur.com/QhUGZOZ.png Knotten looked very glad to join us at the team presentation

Iver Johan Knotten 3.02 23y/o €0
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Murilo Affonso 4.100 30y/o €10.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Oumaru Minoungou 4.100 33y/o €0
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

The battle of the five talents

That leaves us with the talents we acquired for ourself. Three level 1 talents seemed a nice way to go, add two stagiaires to that and you have the perfect number to finish the Lord of the Rings/Hobbit analogy. Concerning the five talents we signed, we only had to fight for one name. The Hondurese Luis Enrique Lopez Nolasco, who is already 24 years old, was a target of fellow Latin American team Volcanica – Fox. Luckily enough for us that team is in CT at the moment, so we were able to offer Luis Enrique more money, which he gladly accepted. No Avenir for him anymore, but maxing at 78 mountain, 72 hill and 74 time trial makes him a really interesting rider.

The two other FA talents we signed, both for 50k, were both self scouted and suggested, which clearly makes them special for us as well. Victor Alejandro Ocampo, who won the U23 Colombian time trial NC, will max out at 78 time trial and prologue. He will spend the 2020 season at Polestar cycling in the CT. The third and last talent we signed was the Chilean Guillermo Andres Beltran. He will max at 76 mountain and 76 hill, and with a last name like that we should be expecting nice things of him.

The two stagiaires that joined us are the Guatemalan Alex Julajuj, who could turn into a nice domestique in the mountains, hills and time trials, and the Ecuadorian Jefferson Alexander Cepeda, who was part of Azteca last season.

Luis Enrique Lopez Nolasco 1.0 24y/o €67.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Victor Alejandro Ocampo 1.0 22y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Guillermo Andres Beltran 1.0 22y/o €50.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Alex Julajuj 1.0 23y/o €10.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Jefferson Alexander Cepeda 2.0 23y/o €10.000
Fl Mo Hi TT St Rs Rc Co Sp Ac Fi Dh Pr

Full roster


Green: loan in
Red: loan out
Purple: stag

(Stelly Robert's wage is 50k)

Spilak, Zmorka and Manninen is such a sick leading trio. Very little depth behind that of course other than the two sprinters, but I wouldn't be surprised if those three keep you up on their own. Pretty spectacular deals, that's for sure Smile
Future Ganna is very happy Zmorka went down to PCT, and past Herklotz is very happy Spilak went down to PCT! Pfft

Looks like you just got enough of a roster to focus on stage races with a TTT, and just enough of a roster to launch Manninen.
Whether that is enough to stay up remains to be seen, but I keep my fingers crossed for you! *

*not at all out of personal interest
Great signings and rebuild for the PCT. Used your budget really well. Depth might be less but the leaders alone can ensure mid table or better I think. Zmorka and Manninen on their own has been capable of getting amazing results, and no reason why they can't do so again. Spilak is great pick for PCT still and the TTT backup should help him further. Looking forward to see how you go this season Smile
Very very top heavy. With so many leaders stepping down to PCT it's hard to say whether there will be opportunities for them to score enough points to save you. I suspect a nail biter for you this year
Three very strong leaders! Points will be scored in most areas.

Nice to see Manarelli getting another contract, unlike that other ex-Minion Pfft
Manager of Minions
3 awesome leaders but definitely a lap of depth. Manninen is terrific. Hard to expect a repeat of last year, but he's still top tier. Likewise for Spilak given his decline, but he's still an A tier contender in PCT.

Zmorka is the real guy who's going to determine your season I think. If you plan well around him, and TT's aren't super random, you should be able to have a solid year overall. If he struggles to score due to randomness, you don't have any depth to fall back on, which will make it hard.

I assume we'll be fighting some GC battles, but your sprint and TT focuses mean we won't clash at most times. So best of luck!
RIP Exxon Duke, David Veilleux, Double Feature, and Monster Energy
That's really some sick additions. Especially Manninen for 400k looks like a bargain if he can come close to what he did last year. Didn't think he'd go for under 0.5M to be honest, so well done Smile
I definitely don't like to see Spilak in PCT. I'm afraid he and Nairo will cross paths pretty frequently, and while Nairo's slightly stronger on the long climbs, Spilak will ride away on the hills and in the TTs. I actually thought I did pretty well with my TTT setup, but yours is far better still, well done again Smile
And Zmorka... I guess pretty much everyone bar knockout would have loved to get him, and while 750k looks a bit steep at first sight, he can bring lots and lots of GC and stage points - while still being really young!

So yeah, your squad is really, really top heavy, and even if Spilak and Zmorka did completely differnt races, they don't cover even half of the season. But if your sprinters can do the rest, you've got good chances of at least staying up - and with just Spilak declining among your leaders, the future would then surely look pretty bright Smile

And my first disappointment about the lack of regional focus went away when I saw your talents - great job there as well! I guess you're really one of the winners of transfers - if you stay up. But you should, definitely Smile
That is a very nice looking leadership trio! I'll only really be competing with you in the GC this season, so hopefully Spilak suffers whenever we meet, but is elsewise excellent.
Spilak is a good signing, but I am worried about Manninen. Surely he can't repeat another season like that?
Changed my sig, this was getting absurd.
Top heavy, as others have said. But Spilak is a top tier rider, Zmorka should bag good points. My only question mark is Manninen and if he can get close to last season. Maksimov i have zero hope for, but at least he was relatively cheap.
Might be closer to relegation than other managers think imo, but you've a real chance to stay up with good planning and the Flying Finn.
I think you'll stay up easily with that trio of leaders + the TTT support. Kinda jealous you got Zmorka for just 750k, meanwhile I got outbid on all my FAs targets Pfft

I will be happy to finish close to you in the sprint and mountain races. Good luck Smile


"I am a cyclist, I may not be the best, but that is what I strive to be. I may never get there, but I will never quit trying." - Tadej Pogačar
Thank you all for the nice comments Smile

We are putting a lot of weight on our leading trio indeed, and with some interesting planning it is yet to be soon whether we will succeed in staying up. What mattered most to me was ensuring that we still contracted at least three more regional talents, to one day reach our goal of 75% of the team being homegrown.

When I go for talents, I usually go for 50k-ish talents, also keeping in mind that there's a decent chance of us relegating and having the troubles of the CT wage cap again next year. The goal of our talents so far is to see them grow into decent 50k (or a bit more) riders, who are useful as domestiques in any division, while being a (semi-)leader in CT and very maybe PCT.

If we stay in, we will still have two strong leaders, if we relegate, our leaders should all be worth something when trying to sell them (if we are able to keep them on during renewals). See you soon for more updates.
2021 NC jersey's - courtesy of designer DarkWolf

Peruvian road champion - Robinson Steven Ruiz

Russian road champion - Roman Maksimov

Brazilian road champion - Carlos Alexandre Manarelli
Brazilian time trial champion - Murilo Affonso

Burkinan time trial champion - Oumaru Minoungou

NCs look good, will be easy to spot in the peloton Smile
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