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“After the Zoncolan stage I felt that if he had been in the break he would have had the legs to win that day. I am very thankful for his help and sacrifice. When you have a great rider support you like that it raises your own level,&r...

Photo: Sirotti








17.06.2014 @ 09:00 Posted by Lukas Knöfler

It’s not uncommon in a Grand Tour for the favourites to hog the headlines while other stories go unnoticed. Such was the case in the Giro d’Italia when André Cardoso quietly rode into the top 20 on the general classification while at the same time supporting Ryder Hesjedal.


The Garmin-Sharp leader first showed his gratitude towards the Portuguese rider in a tweet after the Monte Zoncolan stage: “Truly grateful for @ACardoso84 staying with me today. I believe he could have gone in the break and won this stage. Thanks @Ride_Argyle crew,” Hesjedal tweeted.


When the Canadian was asked to elaborate on this, and the sacrificial dynamic in professional cycling in general, he said, “Before the Zoncolan stage I had the thought that a breakaway could arrive at the finish. It was a perfect opportunity for André to get in that break and have a chance for an important victory.


“But we were down to only four riders at that point, and André was the only one who was supporting me steadily in the mountains. So we made the decision that he would stay with me from the beginning.


And as it turned out I needed him that day, all the way to the finish. He was always there in the important moments of the entire Giro and was crucial for my result throughout those three weeks.


“After the Zoncolan stage I felt that if he had been in the break he would have had the legs to win that day. I am very thankful for his help and sacrifice. When you have a great rider support you like that it raises your own level.”


Strong and consistent in GTs

The 2014 Giro was Cardoso's third Grand Tour. The Portuguese has previously recorded a 16th and a 21st place in the Vuelta, suggesting a strong engine worthy of seeking his own results.


Cardoso, however, maintained that he is happy to do the job he was recruited for: “Regarding the Zoncolan in particular, I am glad for all my work and for it to be recognized by my leader. This is what the team hired me for. I've done my job and that's what matters the most,” the 29-year old reflected on the race. 


Cardoso’s agent Joao Correia echoed these sentiments: “What I always loved about André is that he puts a knife between his teeth and shows up ready to get the job done every time he takes the start line. It was nice to see his hard work recognized by both the team and Ryder at the Giro. He is one of the most unselfish and positive riders I have ever seen and I am confident this is just the beginning for André.”



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