21ª Volta Ciclista a Galicia
Stage 2: A Pobra do Bollón – A Pobra do Bollón (148 km)

A great sieve in the fight for the overall of this Volta a Galicia caused by the chain of A Casela and Airapadrón. The ascents of the Serra do Courel revolutionised the evolution of a stage that mutated in the second of the ascents of the fight of a five-man breakaway that came to have more than four minutes of advantage to the pulse of the postulants to the triumph in the race, initiated by Luca Bagnara, and another fifteen riders who maintain their options. The stage, with a breakaway of the breakaway of the breakaway, went to Pablo Ara (Rias Baixas), while Martín Rey (Cortizo) is the new leader of the race.

Bagnara, Samuel Fernández (Caja Rural), the ‘Cortizo’ riders Martín Rey and Pablo Bonilla and later Pablo Ara would face the final part of the tremendous climb in Lugo. A move by Samuel Fernández and Pablo Ara dismantled the group, which regrouped on the descent without the presence of Bagnara. The Italian, already among the chasers, tried to set up the chase with Antonio González, without success. Both Bagnara and the rider from Soria, however, tried to push forward to try to catch the leader of the race. It was not possible, they ended up arriving in the chasing group at one minute, but the options in the general classification are still alive due to the hardness of the third stage and the elimination of some important riders in the fight for the general classification.

Bagnara starts as the best classified, fifth at 1’02”, while Gonzalez, initially fifth, will start the day twelfth, at 1’19”, after being punished with a 20″ penalty for having received liquid refreshment with 19 kilometres to go… in a mountain stage with enormous difficulties due to the route, narrow roads, constant bends, important hardness, to keep the riders hydrated. The rules are the rules. And the criterion is the criterion. “It was a very demanding race, especially because of the very nervous route on very rough roads,” says Bagnara. “But it also went very well, because the feeling was good and the legs responded”.

Antonio González: “It was a very tough day. Airapadrón was tough, but even tougher with the previous chain stage. A very broken road area where it seemed that the bike did not move forward, with constant slope and very few, if any, breaks. It was a pity that Luca was cut off from the front and we had to row in the last part of the day from behind, but that’s how races are and that’s how they come. In any case, we had a great feeling on the bike all day and we are very confident for tomorrow”.

This Saturday is the main stage, curiously enough with few punctuated passes, but a very tough ascent to A Moa in the first third, an incursion of several tens of kilometres through a terrain that is complicated to manage and a high finish as a culmination where to manage the accumulated wear and tear. A great stage. “We hope that the final general classification will probably be decided here, let’s hope that the sensations remain the same and that both myself and the whole team can do well”, says Bagnara. And González adds: “The stage is really hard and the race is going to explode. We have to try, at least, because we feel that we are in a great moment”.

[📷 Asier Torrado / Federación Galega de Ciclismo]

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