Telefónica-backed squad claims 15th Grand Tour victory
Ecuadorian stuns the world of cycling with his first three-week stagerace success, as Blues confirm themselves as strongest block in the ‘Corsa Rosa’ with a 15th win in a Grand Tour since 1980, an all-time record.
The ‘Locomotive of Carchi’ reached its destination. Richard Carapaz (Movistar Team) claimed overall honours at the 102nd Giro d’Italia on Sunday, after completing with no setbacks the final 17km individual time trial at Verona’s World Championships course. At his podium, Carapaz was joined by Mikel Landa (4th), a brilliant final piece of support to the Ecuadorian by a Blue outfit always showing impressive attitude, commitment and effort.
Andrey Amador, Antonio Pedrero, Héctor Carretero, Jasha Sütterlin, José Joaquín Rojas and Lluís Mas were the other six artists behind a triumph supported by a hard-working staff led by Chente García Acosta and Maximilian Sciandri, the masterminds for such a success.
Richard completed an admirable recovery in this Giro. Dropped back by two unfortunate, consecutive incidents in Orbetello (stage 3), which made him lose a precious 46″, the Carchi native bounced back in style: he won stage four with a brilliant, perfectly-timed attack in Frascati; conceded less than two minutes against top specialist Primoz Roglic (TJV) at the crucial San Marino ITT (stage 9); and inflicted consecutive, deadly blows at the Lago Serrù (st. 13), Courmayeur (st. 14, victory) and the Mortirolo (st. 16) to build a gap near two minutes, which not one could reduce afterwards.
Carapaz’s victory takes the Movistar Team up to 15 overall victories in Grand Tours, which puts the Abarca Sports organisation, led by José Miguel Echávarri and Eusebio Unzué under different title sponsors since 1980, at the top of an all-time classification where they now break the tie against the Legnano squad (14) from the first half of the 20th century -Binda, Bartali and Coppi as biggest names-.
The Telefónica-backed squad, which conquers its fourth Giro win after those by Indurain (1992, 1993) and Quintana (2014), also notches up its second team GC victory in the race, two years after stepping onto the Milano podium together in 2017… and this time, with its full, eight-man roster crossing the last finish line.
REACTION / Richard Carapaz:
“I don’t know what to say – this is a unique feeling. For me, this is the biggest triumph I could have achieved. These are episodes you can’t imagine will come for you in life. The same way I dreamt about it, I got it. Now I believe everything is possible. A whole life comes through your mind in such moments: all the hard work you’ve done, all the sacrifices you endured to achieve your dream. Living this moment makes it all worth it.
“To be honest, I didn’t think the time trial would go that way, but I really struggled like never before in a TT. From the start, and up until the final cobblestone on the straight next to the Arena of Verona, it’s been pure suffering. This is a victory I’ve achieved thanks to my team, which supported me all the way to notching up this huge Giro d’Italia. It goes for them, to everyone who supports me, and for Ecuador, Latin America and everyone around the whole who is happy about this success. Being able to live this moment with my parents, my wife and kids, is even more special, a unique moment I also owe them so much to them for.”
All pictures (c): BettiniPhoto
- 01 Chad Haga Team Sunweb 22'07"
- 02 Victor Campenaerts Lotto Soudal +4"
- 03 Thomas De Gendt Lotto Soudal +6"
- 19 Andrey Amador Movistar Team +53"
- 21 Mikel Landa Movistar Team +57"
- 27 Jasha Sütterlin Movistar Team +1'04"
- 32 Lluís Mas Movistar Team +1'09"
- 36 Richard Carapaz Movistar Team +1'12"
- 99 José Joaquín Rojas Movistar Team +2'33"
- 112 Héctor Carretero Movistar Team +2'43"
- 129 Antonio Pedrero Movistar Team +3'18"
- 01 Richard Carapaz Movistar Team 90h01'47"
- 02 Vincenzo Nibali Bahrain-Merida +1'05"
- 03 Primoz Roglic Jumbo - Visma +2'30"
- 04 Mikel Landa Movistar Team +2'38"
- 39 Andrey Amador Movistar Team +1h33'00"
- 46 Antonio Pedrero Movistar Team +1h56'03"
- 50 José Joaquín Rojas Movistar Team +2h03'31"
- 88 Héctor Carretero Movistar Team +3h33'45"
- 120 Jasha Sütterlin Movistar Team +4h53'09"
- 126 Lluís Mas Movistar Team +5h00'44"