Rui Costa (cyclist)

This article is about the cyclist. For the footballer, see Rui Costa.
This name uses Portuguese naming customs. The first or maternal family name is Faria and the second or paternal family name is Costa.
Rui Costa

Costa at the 2013 Tour de Romandie.
Personal information
Full name Rui Alberto Faria da Costa
Born (1986-10-05) 5 October 1986
Póvoa de Varzim, Portugal
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)[1]
Weight 63 kg (139 lb; 9.9 st)[1]
Team information
Current team Lampre–Merida
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type All-rounder
Professional team(s)
2007–2008 Benfica
2009–2013 Caisse d'Epargne[2]
2014– Lampre–Merida
Major wins

Grand Tours

Tour de France
3 individual stages (2011, 2013)

Stage races

Tour de Suisse (2012, 2013, 2014)
Four Days of Dunkirk (2009)
Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid (2011)

One-day races and Classics

World Road Race Championships (2013)
National Time Trial Championships (2010, 2013)
National Road Race Championships (2015)
GP de Montréal (2011)
Infobox last updated on
4 May 2014

Rui Alberto Faria da Costa, ComIH[3] (born 5 October 1986) is a Portuguese professional road bicycle racer, who currently rides for UCI ProTeam Lampre–Merida.[4] He is best known for winning the 2013 UCI Road World Championships in Tuscany, Italy – the first Portuguese to do so, three stages of the Tour de France in 2011 and 2013, and the 2012, 2013 and 2014 editions of the Tour de Suisse, becoming the first cyclist to win the event on three consecutive years.[5]

Early life and amateur career

Born in Aguçadoura, Póvoa de Varzim, Costa started his career at Guilhabreu, a civil parish of Vila do Conde, then went to Santa Maria da Feira.

Professional career

2007–2011: Early years

Costa at the 2010 Tour de France

Costa became a professional cyclist at SL Benfica in 2007, and switched to Caisse d'Epargne in 2009.

In 2009, Costa won the Four Days of Dunkirk followed a stage 8 win in the 2010 Tour de Suisse.

In 2010, Costa was involved with an altercation with Carlos Barredo at the end of Stage 6 of the Tour de France, with Barredo removing his front wheel and attempting to club Costa with it before both riders lobbed blows at each other. Both were fined 300 francs for the incident.[6]

At the Portuguese national championships in June 2010 Costa and his brother Mário tested positive for the banned substance methylhexanamine,[7] which they claimed to have ingested inadvertently due to a tainted food supplement. Further testing proved that to be the case,[8] and he re-signed with his former team, now known as Movistar Team, in April 2011 after five months of suspension.[2]


Costa on the podium after winning the 2011 Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal

In 2011, Costa performed well in the Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid: after second places at the first and third stage, he won the overall classification.[9] Later that season, Costa rode away solo to win stage 8 of the 2011 Tour de France.[10][11] Following his previous successes, Costa won the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal, sprinting away from a late breakaway. He beat breakaway companion Pierrick Fedrigo. Both were chased by Philippe Gilbert, who made a late counter-attack, but came two seconds short.[12]


Costa at the 2012 Tour de France

In 2012, Costa finished third in the General classification of the Tour of Romandie.[13] He won stage 2 in the Tour de Suisse, took the race's lead and successfully defended the yellow jersey through the Tour.[14] He hung on to his 14 seconds overall lead over second-placed Fränk Schleck in the last stage, where the Luxembourger attacked on the slopes of the Glaubenberg Pass. Schleck crested the climb with an advantage of a minute over Costa, but was reeled back in along the descent by the small group containing the Portuguese rider. The pair finished the stage with the same time.[15] He said after the important win: "I want to dedicate this to the team, because my teammates worked magnificently all week. I have no words to describe it."[16] Costa headed to the Tour de France, slated to ride in support of his leader Alejandro Valverde, but crashes and incidents plagued Valverde,[17] who still managed to grab a stage win and finished 20th overall. Costa placed higher than his captain in the general classification at 18th.[18] He then participated to the GP Ouest-France, where he settled for second place of the French classic. He escaped on the ultimate climb of the day with 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) to go, but Team Sky's Edvald Boasson Hagen passed him in the final kilometer, and Costa protected his second place as the surging peloton crossed the finish line on his heels.[19] In September, he headed to the Canadian province of Québec to take part in the two World Tour races held there. He took the third step of the podium in the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec, winning the sprint of a group of 16 riders in hot pursuit of the two escapees, Simon Gerrans and Greg Van Avermaet, who finished four seconds ahead of Costa.[20] Two days later, he aimed at defending his title in the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal, but finished eighth, once again with a 4-second deficit over the winner, Lars Petter Nordhaug.[21] He concluded his season in China at the Tour of Beijing, scoring another top ten overall placing with ninth.


In 2013,[22] Costa started the year by winning the Klasika Primavera and finishing third in the Tour de Romandie where he had aimed to defend his Tour de Suisse.[23] He later successfully defended his title after winning stage seven, and then taking the yellow jersey from Mathias Frank after winning the ultimate stage, a hill climb time trial.[24] In the Tour de France, Costa left the Pyrenees inside the top ten. On stage 13, Costa lost close to ten minutes after going back to try to help his team leader, Valverde, who flatted. On stage 16, Costa ended up on a breakaway where he attacked in the last climb of the day, the Col de Manse before the final downhill to a solo finish in Gap.[25] He was also awarded the combativity prize of that stage. A few days later, Costa won stage 19 after escaping from the lead group on the Col de la Croix Fry, he ended up with another solo finish in Le Grand-Bornand.

Costa won the elite men's race at the 2013 UCI Road World Championships in Tuscany, Italy, becoming the first Portuguese rider to wear the rainbow jersey. After the race Costa said: "After the tour, the goal was to reach the World Cup in the best possible conditions and make a good race. But I never thought I could win a race as important as this. It means everything to me. It is the reward for a lifetime of effort and hard work."[26][27]

Costa left the Movistar Team at the end of the 2013 season, and joined Lampre–Merida for the 2014 season.[4]


Costa wearing the Rainbow Jersey at the 2014 Tour de Suisse

Costa started the 2014 season by taking third place and the points classification jersey in the Tour of Algarve. He then finished second overall in the Paris-Nice and, for the third consecutive year, claimed the third place in the Tour de Romandie. Costa's first win of the season in the world champion's rainbow jersey occurred in the last stage of the 2014 Tour de Suisse. With this victory Costa took the yellow jersey from Tony Martin and successfully defended his title, thus becoming the first cyclist to win Tour de Suisse three consecutive times.

Costa entered the 2014 Tour de France with high hopes, aiming for a podium finish, but started to lose touch with the front riders due to bronchitis.[28] During the second rest day, his health condition worsened and he was diagnosed with bronchopneumonia. Ranked 13th in the general classification, Costa was forced to withdraw from the Tour.[29] He returned to World Tour-level competition at the GP Ouest-France, crossing the finish line in 92nd place, 11 seconds behind winner Sylvain Chavanel.[30] Costa then competed in the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec and the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal, securing a runner-up place in the latter race, behind Simon Gerrans.

Costa went to the 2014 UCI Road World Championships in Ponferrada, Spain, with the aim of defending his road race title; he finished in the 23rd place, seven seconds behind the winner and his successor, Michał Kwiatkowski of Poland.[31][32]


Costa took the fourth place on the general classification of Paris–Nice as a first notable result, thanks in part to a third place on the time trial up Col d'Èze.[33] He finished seventh of the mountainous World Tour race Tour of the Basque Country. He also grabbed the fourth place of the Amstel Gold Race, where Michal Kwiatkowski imposed himself;[34] a week later he would come again in fourth place at Liège-Bastogne-Liège. He decided not to go defend his title at the Tour de Suisse, which he had won three times in a row, and participate to the Critérium du Dauphiné instead.[35] Costa won the sixth stage of the race after being in the breakaway for most of the day, passing Vincenzo Nibali near the finish line.[36] A week before the Tour de France, Costa won the National Road Race Championships. At the Tour de France he retired due to injuries picked up in a crash, leading him to announce he would ride for stage wins in the future.[37]

Career achievements

Major results

1st Overall Giro delle Regioni
2nd Overall Giro delle Regioni
1st Stage 4
2nd Overall Coupe des nations Ville Saguenay
1st Stage 4 (ITT)
2nd Overall Tour de l'Avenir
5th World Under-23 Road Race Championships
8th World Under-23 Time Trial Championships
1st Overall Four Days of Dunkirk
1st Young rider classification
3rd Overall Vuelta Chihuahua Internacional
1st Stage 3
1st Mountains classification
1st Trofeo Deià
1st Stage 8 Tour de Suisse
1st National Time Trial Championships
2nd Overall Four Days of Dunkirk
1st Young rider classification
6th Overall Volta ao Algarve
1st Overall Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid
1st Stage 8 Tour de France
1st Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal
1st Overall Tour de Suisse
1st Stage 2
2nd GP Ouest-France
2nd Trofeo Deià
3rd Overall Tour de Romandie
3rd Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec
4th GP Miguel Indurain
5th Overall Volta ao Algarve
8th Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal
9th Overall Tour of Beijing
10th Overall UCI World Tour
1st World Road Race Championships
1st National Time Trial Championships
1st Overall Tour de Suisse
1st Stages 7 & 9 (ITT)
1st Klasika Primavera
Tour de France
1st Stages 16 & 19
Combativity award – Stage 16
3rd Overall Tour de Romandie
4th Overall Tour of Beijing
4th Trofeo Serra de Tramuntana
5th Overall Volta ao Algarve
5th Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec
6th Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal
9th Liège–Bastogne–Liège
9th Overall UCI World Tour
1st Overall Tour de Suisse
1st Stage 9
2nd Overall Paris–Nice
2nd Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal
3rd Overall Volta ao Algarve
1st Points classification
3rd Overall Tour de Romandie
3rd Giro di Lombardia
4th Overall Tour of Beijing
4th UCI World Tour
1st National Road Race Championships
3rd Overall Critérium du Dauphiné
1st Stage 6
3rd Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal
4th Overall Paris–Nice
4th Amstel Gold Race
4th Liège–Bastogne–Liège
7th Overall Tour of the Basque Country
9th World Road Race Championships
3rd Liège–Bastogne–Liège
5th Overall Tour of Oman
6th Overall Tour de Romandie
7th Overall Tour of the Basque Country
7th Overall Tour de Suisse
10th Overall Paris–Nice
10th La Flèche Wallonne
10th Road Race, Olympic Games
Combativity award Stage 19 Tour de France

Grand Tour general classification results timeline

Grand Tour 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Pink jersey Giro
Yellow jersey Tour WD 73 90 18 27 WD WD 49
red jersey Vuelta

WD = Withdrew; In Progress = IP

World championships road race classification results timeline

2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Rainbow jersey World 69 15 11 1 23 9

WD = Withdrew; In Progress = IP

Monuments results timeline

Monument 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Milan–San Remo 51
Tour of Flanders
Liège–Bastogne–Liège DNF 17 9 4 3
Giro di Lombardia 25 38 38 3 46 15

DNF = Did not finish
— = Did not compete

Other major stage races

Race 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Paris–Nice           2 4 10
Tirreno–Adriatico 145 60   29        
Volta a Catalunya                
Tour of the Basque Country       15 13 51 7 7
Tour de Romandie     18 3 3 3 25 6
Critérium du Dauphiné     43       3  
Tour de Suisse 13 34   1 1 1   7
Tour of Beijing  NH  NH   9 4 4 NH  NH

NH = Not Held

UCI World Tour classification results timeline

2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
UCI World Tour 10 9 4 9 19


  1. 1 2 "Rui Alberto Costa profile".
  2. 1 2 "Costa signs three year contract with Team Movistar". Retrieved 2012-04-29.
  4. 1 2 "Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa al Team Lampre-Merida" [Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa to Team Lampre-Merida]. Lampre–Merida (in Italian). CGS Cycling Team AG. 24 August 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  5. "Rui Costa faz história na Volta à Suíça com o terceiro triunfo consecutivo".
  7. Peter Cossins (2010-10-18). "Rui Costa and his brother test positive". Retrieved 2013-07-16.
  8. 2010-12-28. "Ghent laboratory supports Costa brothers' claims". Retrieved 2013-07-23.
  9. "Costa wins Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid overall; Colombian Giovanni Báez takes final stage". Retrieved 2012-04-29.
  10. "Costa Wins Stage 8 of Tour de France 2011 – Cycling News". Retrieved 2014-08-17.
  11. "Rui Da Costa wins stage 8 as Thor Hushovd holds lead in 2011 Tour de France". 9 July 2011. Retrieved 2012-04-29.
  12. "Rui Costa Wins in Montreal". Retrieved 2012-04-29.
  13. "Wiggins wins Tour de Romandie". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. 29 April 2012. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
  14. "Costa wins Tour de Suisse overall". Retrieved 2012-06-23.
  15. "Fränk Schleck attacks, Rui Costa defends to win 2012 Tour de Suisse". Velo News. 2012 Competitor Group, Inc. 17 June 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  16. "A glorious Sunday for Movistar". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. 17 June 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  17. "More bad luck for Valverde in Tour de France". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. 7 July 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  18. "Standings after stage 20". Le Tour de France. Amaury Sport Organisation. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  19. "GP Ouest France-Plouay review". Velo Voices. Word Press. 26 August 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  20. "Gerrans wins GP de Quebec". Eurosport. YAHOO! EUROSPORT. 8 September 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  21. "Results 2012". Grand Prix Cyclistes. Grand Prix Cycliste Québec-Montréal, 2010–2011. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
  22. "Movistar Team (MOV) – ESP". UCI World Tour. Union Cycliste Internationale. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  23. "Cycling – Rui Costa wins Klasika Primavera, Contador third". Eurosport. 7 April 2013.
  24. "Costa celebrates back-to-back Tour de Suisse victories". 16 June 2013.
  25. Ryan, Barry (16 July 2013). "Rui Costa repaid with Tour de France stage victory in Gap". Future plc. Retrieved 17 July 2013.
  26. Ryan, Barry (29 September 2013). "Rui Costa wins men's road race world championship". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
  27. ""Este é o maior êxito da minha carreira" – Rui Costa". A Bola. 29 September 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2013.
  28. "Rui Costa out of Tour de France overall battle with bronchitis". Cycling Weekly. 17 July 2014.
  31. "UCI World Road Championships: Kwiatkowski wins the rainbow jersey". Union Cycliste Internationale. 28 September 2014. Retrieved 28 September 2014.
  32. "UCI World Championships (ESP/CM) – Men's Elite Road Race". Union Cycliste Internationale. 28 September 2014. Retrieved 28 September 2014.
  33. "Results: 2015 Paris-Nice, stage 7". VeloNews. Competitor Group, Inc. 15 March 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  34. "Kwiatkowski sprints to first victory in rainbow jersey in Amstel Gold Race". VeloNews. Competitor Group, Inc. 19 April 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  35. Emil Axelgaard (22 April 2015). "No title defence for Costa at the Tour de Suisse". Cycling Quotes. 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  36. Richard Windsor (12 June 2015). "Nibali recovers to take overall lead in Critérium du Dauphiné as Costa wins stage". Cycling Weekly. IPC Media Sports & Leisure network. Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  37. "Costa to re-prioritise stage wins at the Tour de France". Cyclingnews. 5 April 2016. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rui Costa (cyclist).
Preceded by
Hélder Rodrigues
Portuguese Sportsman of the Year
Succeeded by
Miguel Oliveira

{{UCI Road World Champions – Men's road race}}

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