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"Punctures are part of cycling, but to see something like this happen twice in a few days really sounds like a bad joke."



02.05.2015 @ 22:57 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

It must have been pretty much a deja-vu for Rodolfo Torres. With 5 km to the finish of Vuelta a Asturias stage 1, Oviedo-Pola de Lena (149,5 km), the Colombia-Coldeportes rider was well in contention for the day’s glory, part of the first chasing group of solo leader Igor Anton (Movistar), who eventually ended up on top of the opening effort.


Instead, just like it happened two weeks ago in Castilla y Leon, when he was leading the race solo, a puncture upset the Escarabajos’ plans, while also affecting Rodolfo Torres’ GC ambitions.


A real pity, after the rider from Busbanzà had showed once again of being one of the strongest climbers of the moment. The challenge among the top contenders lit up on the long ascent to Alto de la Cobertoria (Category 1), peaking at just a few kilometres to the line, and after an attack by Miguel Angel Rubiano, replied by the bunch, only four riders found themselves in the lead: Igor Anton (Movistar), David Belda (Burgos), Garikoitz Bravo (Murias Taldea) and Torres himself, who passed first on the KOM line, earning the best climber’s jersey in the process.


After the top, Belda moved away of the fellow escapees, with Anton launching himself at the chase, but a crash by the leader on the tricky and narrow final descent opened the way for the Movistar rider, who took the stage ahead of Amets Txurruka (Caja Rural, at 14 seconds) and his teammate Jesus Herrada (at 29). Torres was the other victim of the dirty tarmac on the descent: forced to stop and wait for the neutral wheel change, Torres had to settle for 10th, 1.06 adrift, just in front of two teammates, Brayan Ramirez and Miguel Angel Rubiano.


Sports Director Oliverio Rincon’s disappointment could be clearly perceived: “Punctures are part of cycling, but to see something like this happen twice in a few days really sounds like a bad joke. Rodolfo bounced back just fine after last week’s heavy crash, and was immediately back with the strongest on the mountains, well supported by Rubiano and Brayan Ramirez, who actually impressed me today. Tomorrow we will try again though, with full confidence in our chances.”


The Escarabajos’ chase for success will restart tomorrow in stage 2 of the Spanish race, taking the riders from Soto de Ribera to Oviedo through 176 km and five categorized climbs.



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