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"My own teammates have told me that they have prepared well and they know that it will require hard work to keep the leader's jersey. I'm feeling strong and we wil see how it goes in the last stage," Belda says

Photo: Sirotti

VUELTA A CASTILLA Y LEON

RACE PROFILE
|
NEWS
18.05.2014 @ 11:42 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

David Belda from the small Burgos team proved his great climbing skills when he beat the likes of Movistar and Caja Rural in yesterday's queen stage of the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon. Heading into the hard final stage of the race, the 31-year-old Spaniard claims that his team is strong enough to defend the lead.

 

Over the last few year 31-year-old David Belda has given several indications that he has a huge climbing talent but until today the big win has always eluded him. Yesterday he finally got his time in the spotlight when he took a very convincing solo victory in the queen stage of the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon.

 

As the only ProTeam in the race, Movistar were the big favourites to win the stage and they carried the majority of the responsibility to chase down the early break. All was timed perfectly and set for a big finish on the climb to the finish where the race favourites were counting on Javier Moreno and Sylwester Szmyd.

 

Caja Rural took up the gauntlet and started to whittle down the peloton while Belda hid himself in the main group. After the first attacks had been neutralized, it seemed to just be another of those warm-up escapes when Belda made his move in the finale.

 

Unlike the early attackers, however, Belda constantly increased his gap and the race favourites had to come out playing themselves. One of the Caja Rural captain Marcos Garcia set off in pursuit and was later joined by the Movistar leader, Szmyd.

 

However, the duo failed to make up any ground on the lone Belda and in fact kept losing time to the impressive Burgos rider. They never saw the 31-year-old Spaniard again and he rolled across the line to take a comfortable solo victory, 53 seconds ahead of Garcia and 55 seconds ahead of Szmyd.

 

"When you feel good, it is better to attack from the bottom," he said. "I knew that the climb was very hard bu that it got easier near the top. There were very powerful riderslike Moreno in the group so I decided to take off from the start. We also had Jesus Del Pino in the group and he was out second card to play."

 

The small Burgos team now faces a very tough ask in today's final stage of the race which takes place on a hilly route that will be very hard to control. However, Belda has confidence in his teammates.

 

"We have a great team with strong riders in all terrains, " he said. "My own teammates have told me that they have prepared well and they know that it will require hard work to keep the leader's jersey. I'm feeling strong and we wil see how it goes in the last stage."

 

His manager Diego Gallego agreed that the team will have their work cut out for them.

 

"There are very dangerous teams like Caja Rural andMovistar and surely the final day will give us a great battle," he said.

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