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“In my whole life, I have never experienced similar feelings that I did today. It was very strange. I had no strength to push the pedals,” Betancur told Biciciclismo.

Photo: A.S.O.

CARLOS ALBERTO BETANCUR

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DECATHLON AG2R LA MONDIALE

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ITZULIA BASQUE COUNTRY

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VOLTA A CATALUNYA

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09.04.2014 @ 16:54 Posted by Aleksandra Górska

Carlos Betancur managed to negotiate only 20 kilometers of the Vuelta al Pais Vasco second stage before unusual weakness forced him to pull out of the mountainous event held in the Besque Country yesterday. The Colombian AG2R La Mondiale leader, despite being reportedly overweight, enjoyed a perfect early season with convincing overall victories in the Tour Haut Var and more importantly the Paris-Nice, but due to health problems and antibiotic treatment was unable to live up to certainly high expectations since then.

 

Following his withdrawal from the Volta a Catalunya and eight-day recovery period, Betancur entered the Vuelta al Pais Vasco with low both morale and expectations, as the 24-year old Colombian wanted to use the hilly event to regain a rhythm ahead of the Ardennes classics, his first objectives of the 2014 season.

 

The reality turned out to be very different for the young AG2R La Mondiale leader when he was forced to abandon the event early on its second day due to a weakness he has never experienced before, possibly connected with an antibiotic treatment he has recently undergone.

 

“In my whole life, I have never experienced similar feelings that I did today. It was very strange. I had no strength to push the pedals,” Betancur told Biciciclismo.

 

“After yesterday’s stage I was unable to ride anymore. I had no energy.”

 

After the fever pulled him out of the Volta a Catalunya and swelling in the knee prevented him from training for eight consecutive days, it was first suspected that Betancur didn’t manage to fully recover from his latest injury. However, the 24-year old Colombian denied such suggestions and claimed that he left knee problems behind him.

 

“The knee did not hurt. I think it is typical response for the antibiotics I took,” Betancur tried to explain his weakness.

 

Despite the physical weakness, the AG2R La Mondiale rider suffers from a low morale after pulling out of two races which were planned as key preparation events towards the Ardennes classics.

 

“My goal was to leave the Basque Country with good sensations. It is a setback and it’s somewhat difficult for me. Now we have to wait several days and see how I would recover.”

 

“Those races were very important to me and such a situation had happened…It made me realize more than ever before that this is also a pert of cycling.”

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