Spanish champion from Movistar Team takes 5th place at Worlds road race in difficult route for his characteristics. Amador does fine on final three laps, finishes in 25th spot
In a route better adapted for ‘the other’ classics specialists, the big riders on the cobblestones, Alejandro Valverde showed yet again why he’s considered as the most consistent rider in the whole international scene, able to shine on all terrains.
The Spanish champion from the Movistar Team took the 5th place in the road race of the World Championships in Richmond (Virginia, USA), over 262km and fifteen laps of a high-speed urban course, marked by two short, sharp, cobbled climbs -Libby Hill and 23rd Street- which served as launchpad for new rainbow jersey Peter Sagan (SVK).
As well as Valverde, who stood all moves and fought against purer sprinters for the medals -two claimed by Eusebio Unzué’s squad, in one of their most consistent Worlds since Telefónica took over as sponsor-, Andrey Amador was also in the mix during the final three laps, finishing as second of the Movistar riders in 25th place.
Ion Izagirre and Imanol Erviti -who was involved in the biggest crash of the day, fortunately with no consequences- did a nice covering work for his leader before the final lap, with Alex Dowsett also working for Team GB and briefly attacking halfway through the race.
Alejandro Valverde (via Spanish Federation): “It ended up being a harder circuit than expected – a bit of it due to ‘elimination’ in the finale, riding under constant danger due to speed and crashes. I consider it was a good result; I already stated it wasn’t a route that suited me much, though it’s true that it became harder in the end. We were up there once again, giving everything we could, just as much as the rest of the national team.
“Almost all sprinters made it to the last sprint, and even with that, we could bring a good result home with that 6th place. When Sagan attacked as well as Van Avermaet, it wasn’t a problem that I was too far behind -I was like eighth through the beginning of the 23rd Street slope-, but it was really hard to keep pushing forward, impossible for me at that point. I didn’t lack that energy quite as much into the sprint as there; probably I could have done a bit closer to the medals with better positioning in that sprint, but we shouldn’t make up any excuses.”