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“The knee has been a little better, the swelling has gone down enough,” Carlos Betancur confirmed talking to 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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04.04.2014 @ 18:37 Posted by Aleksandra Górska

Despite earlier information suggesting that Carlos Betancur’s appearance in the Vuelta al Pais Vasco was under threat due to a knee inflammation, the 24-year old Colombian will line up in Basque Country on Monday.

 

After his successful campaigns in the Tour Haut Var and Paris-Nice, Betancur was forced to pull out of the Volta a Catalunya before its queen stage due to a fever caused by knee inflammation, as antibiotic treatment has been recommended by the AG2R La Mondiale team’s doctor.

 

According to Spanish media, following an eight-day rest period, the 24-year old Colombian was able to his the road again on Thursday and as the swelling has gone down, should be ready to animate the action on the mountainous parcours of the Basque Country on Monday.

 

“The knee has been a little better, the swelling has gone down enough,” Betancur confirmed talking to Biciciclismo.

 

With three stage wins and two victories in overall classifications, Betancur found himself an early leader of the UCI individual standings, but the AG2R La Mondiale rider won’t contest for a glory in Vuelta al Pais Vasco this time around. The punchy Colombian wants to use an mountainous event to regain a good rhythm and fine his disposition ahead of his first big goals of 2014 season: Ardennes classics.

 

“[My goal is] to roll, to pick up the pace, try to prepare best for the classics,” Betancur said.

 

After dominating a stage of Italian one-day races in Acqua e Sapone outfit in 2012, Betancur excelled in front of the broader audience for the first time on Ardennes classics’ hilly routes last spring, when he finished third in the Flache Wallonne after a brave early attack on the Mur du Huy and forth in Liege-Bastogne-Liege.

 

Colombian puncheur also rode the Vuelta al Pais Vasco as a preparation race for Ardennes classics last year and emerged as one of the strongest climbers of the mountainous event, surpassed only by fellow countryman Sergio Henao (Team Sky) on its queen stage.

 

The 24-year old considered his recent victory in the Paris-Nice the most valuable in his professional career and it certainly marked an important step forward for the young Colombian. However, Betancur admitted that a withdrawal from Catalunya and over w week-long rest period significantly lowered his morale ahead of coming events.

 

“I’m very sad because after the Paris-Nice I felt very, very good and motivated for Catalunya. Now my morale went down but we all have to move forward.”

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