The protagonist of our alternative racing calendar, Lachlan Morton, has taken us along with him…
EF Pro Cycling is proud to welcome its newest member – Michael Valgren. The Danish Classics man and all-rounder will be joining the team in 2021.
“I’m most excited about moving to EF to start working with all the people there. Obviously, I’ve been talking to Matti Breschel and Magnus Cort as fellow Danes,” said Valgren. “They both said it was an awesome team and I look forward to being a part of that. From the outside, EF looks like a super fun team. And I really can’t wait to be a part of it. I think I will fit right in.”
Valgren has been turning heads ever since he signed his first professional contract in Denmark at age 19. Since then he’s won the Danish national championships, the Amstel Gold Race, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, completed six Tours de France and won two editions of the Danish stage race Danmark Rundt.
“My main strength as a rider, I believe, is my endurance and that I’m really able to read the race pretty well. So I think that’s a very good combination, especially in the one-day races. The longer the race gets, the better I get and I read the riders in the race. That’s one of my greatest qualities on the bike,” Valgren said.
The reliability of Valgren didn’t go unnoticed by EF Pro Cycling CEO Jonathan Vaughters.
“Michael has a big motor and is a true talent. He is exceptional at the Classics and very valuable to his team in stage races. I am excited to see what he brings to our crew,” Vaughters noted. “He gives us another card to play in the cobbles when things get crazy — which they always do.”
The 28 year old said there is one race that he dreams of winning one day – the Ronde van Vlaanderen (Tour of Flanders).
“It’s a special race. It’s so intense, it’s long and hard, but somehow it just goes by so fast. I’ve always been pretty good there. So that’s also why I like it,” explained Valgren who finished fourth there in 2018. “But the combination of the course, the atmosphere, the history around it, I think it just creates these really great battles in the Ronde van Vlaanderen and that’s why I really love it.”
When he’s not racing his bike, Michael has taken to learning all there is to know about coffee and fine dining. “I think that’s normal for every cyclist, you know, you grind your own beans and bring them to the races, have your own aeropress. That has become a normal thing now,” explained Valgren. “I like to enjoy really good food. I have a really good friend who owns a Michelin-starred restaurant. As I have gotten to know him, I have really started to pay attention to good quality food.”
Michael grew up in the northern regions of Denmark, a region rich in national parks and sandy beaches. He has spent the last few years living and training on the sunny shores of Monaco with his wife and son.
“I moved to Monaco in November 2016, so I’ve already been here four years and I really really like it. We have a really good network of friends down here that we built up with my wife and son,” said Valgren. But at the end of the day, there is nothing quite like riding at home. “My favorite area to ride my bike in Denmark has to be where I am from. I’m from the West Coast and we have some amazing roads over there and the scenery is beautiful. And, if you want to ride your gravel bike there are so many good roads to ride out on.”
Welcome aboard, Michael.