The demanding epilogue of the Elite U23 Spanish Cup, 4,000 metres of positive vertical drop in 180 kilometres, was conditioned by the accident suffered, halfway through the race, by members of the organisational team, a referee judge and the driver of her motorbike; an accident that forced the race to be neutralised for more than an hour before the pass over Monte Aloia. The cyclists faced neutralised this climb and also part of its descent to relaunch it at the height of Chenlo, about 63 kilometres from the finish, once the ambulances could rejoin the caravan.
With the re-launch, a new race with two passes ahead, the Fonte do 100 anos and the final ascent of A Madroa. Throughout this journey, the riders of the U23 structure of the Foundation were constantly looking for the limelight, while at the same time trying to toughen up the final part and try to anticipate the outcome. Ramón Fernández would move before the penultimate climb and Fran Muñoz would do the same. The squad would be on the lookout for a counter-attack by Andrea Montoli in the last five kilometres, looking to catch a move by Ander Ganzabal (Laboral Kutxa) and Samuel Fernández (Caja Rural).
The race, however, arrived in a group at A Madroa, where Arnau Gilabert launched a first hard attack that was answered by the eventual winner of the race, Guatemalan Sergio Chumil (Cortizo). Gilabert finished seventh: “I think we did a very good job as a team, we had a presence in the breakaway before the break and also both Montoli and I were making a very good move to reach the head of the race that caught us just when the break came. In the restart the peloton came out with a lot of speed and caught us. And then we kept trying with Ramón, Fran and Monto. On the final climb, right at the start, I started at full throttle. All races are different, we have to keep working. The important thing is to keep sowing and the work will pay off”.
[📷 Álvaro García / Club Ciclista Rias Baixas]