Vuelta a Asturias
Movistar Team's Richard Carapaz successfully defended his title in the Vuelta a Asturias and laid down a marker for the forthcoming Giro d'Italia with a stage win and strong overall performance in north-west Spain. The Ecuadorian climber and co-leader for the Giro, Mikel Landa profitted from superb team-work on Saturday's stage with Héctor Carretero and Lluís Mas doing much of the work to chase down an early break before José Joaquín Rojas set a fearsome pace on the lower slopes of the Alto del Acebo which fractured what was left of the bunch.
Carapaz and Landa then worked together on the latter half of the final climb to win by what proved to be the race winning margin after he successfully completed Sunday's stage and claimed the overall victory. Mikel Landa was prevented from starting the final stage by a minor injury as a precaution, but is expected to recover fully in time for La Grande Partenza in Bologna on Saturday.
It was a very, very strong three days’ work from my team-mates, the whole squad really. Without them, it wouldn’t have seemed so easy – it really wasn’t – nor we would have got victories like yesterday’s double, with such a beautiful picture for Mikel and myself. It was great to dedicate that to the team and also celebrate in Oviedo today.
Women’s Tour de Yorkshire
Riders from both of Endura’s women’s road team were in the thick of the action over two days of racing in Yorkshire. Bigla’s own Yorkshirewoman, Lizzy Banks, hit out on a long range solo move which saw her lead by over two minutes before being joined by a small group of riders who held off the peloton until they hit the 3km to go mark. Lizzy’s heroics were rewarded with a trip to the podium to collect the Queen of the Mountains jersey. Banks showed her tenacity on the second stage too, once again launching an early attack before forming part of the selection that went on to form the race winning break. Lizzy held on for ninth place on the stage and GC too.
Movistar Team’s Mavi García picked up the biggest result in her pro career with a very strong display on Sunday’s second stage that saw her finish second behind Marianne Vos (CCC – Liv) on GC and claim the overall Queen of the Mountains title too. Garcia went on the offensive with 50km to go before Vos and Soraya Paladin (Alé Cipollini) reeled her in with 20km still to race. The trio worked hard to stave off their pursuers with Mavi launching her sprint early in Scarborough’s sea front just being pipped to the line by Vos.
I started to push with 50km to go, I saw myself doing well compared to the others – but I wasn’t really aiming to go solo, I just took a gap and, when I looked back, I saw there was no one behind. I just can’t believe what I’ve done today. I knew they were two tough rivals coming into a sprint, but I just wanted to lead it out, launch it and push until the end. It was good for ‘just’ second, yet I’m really, really happy.
Pan American Championships
Bigla Team’s Leah Thomas picked up a gold medal in the individual time trial in the Pan American Championships beating fellow Team USA rider Amber Neben by 4.6s over the flat course in Hidalgo, Mexico. In Sunday’s road race, Movistar Team’s Colombian Paul Patiño claimed a silver medal in the U23 category.