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"The experience I collected in 2014, starting with the Giro d’Italia participation, has been vital: I went through my winter preparation with a different mentality, and way greater confidence. I immediately had the feeling I coul...

Photo: Colombiacyclingpro.com

TOUR DE SAN LUIS

RACE PROFILE
|
NEWS
26.01.2015 @ 13:07 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

A new  cycling year has started with the Escarabajos already at the fore. Team Colombia-Coldeportes has enjoyed by far the best start of the season in its 4-year history at the Tour de San Luis (January 19-25, 2015), shining in all the three uphill finishes of the first race of the season, and taking an outstanding overall 2nd place with Rodolfo Torres.

 

A name a few would have predicted to be in the fight for the GC beforehand, but that does not apply to the team’s technical staff.

 

“We knew Rodolfo was coming to this race in a good condition, and we certainly were confident he and Miguel Rubiano would have a good campaign here. He probably exceeded our own expectations though,” Sports Director Oscar Pellicioli said.

 

The race came to its conclusion today, Sunday January 25th, with the traditional final stage with start and finish in San Luis (122 km), won in a mass sprint by Mark Cavendish (Etixx-Quickstep). Best Colombia-Coldeportes’ rider on the day wasMiguel Angel Rubiano, 22nd.

 

But the real emotion was still to come for Team Colombia-Coldeportes, with the final celebrations: Rodolfo Torres stepped onto the final podium in an international race for the first time in his career, behind winner Daniel Diaz (Funvic) and ahead of fellow Colombian Nairo Quintana (Movistar). Torres built his overall achievement with an exciting run in the three uphill finishes of the race, taking two second and a third place, and providing a solid performance in San Luis’ individual time trial. Thanks to his consistency in the mountains, Rodolfo also won the best climber’s classification.

 

Minutes later, it was time for the whole line-up – Torres, Miguel Angel Rubiano, Edward Diaz, Carlos Julian Quintero,Leonardo Duque and Juan Pablo Valencia – to step up on the awarding ceremony stage as Teams Classification winners.

 

“It has been amazing racing here, I enjoyed the experience a lot too," Rodolfo Torres said afterwards. “It is a big change from last season’s start: the last was my first year in the pro bunch, and I still had a lot to realize about what to expect and what is required to compete at this level. The experience I collected in 2014, starting with the Giro d’Italia participation, has been vital: I went through my winter preparation with a different mentality, and way greater confidence. I immediately had the feeling I could be able to compete at a very high level here, and the amazing support by our team here made it possible: the teams’ classification was a very deserved reward, and an extremely good sign for what’s next in the season.”

 

If a remark really had to be done to Colombia-Coldeportes’ performance in San Luis, it would be the fact that they leave Argentina without a stage win in the bag, but DS Oscar Pellicioli sounds confident that the team will make up for it soon: “The morale went up day after day here in San Luis, and that really makes things easier. Yesterday, I was amazed by Valencia, Duque and Quintero’s work on the flat, by Rubiano fighting back into the leaders’ group after a puncture with 10 km to go, by 20-year-old Edward Diaz giving his 110% to hold on with the strongest to defend our teams’ classification lead, and obviously by Torres’ amazing performance over the whole week.”

 

“We really deserved a stage win, but it was just the first race in the season: a number of exciting challenges are in front of us, and I think our team actually proved a point here in Argentina,” Pellicioli told.

 

While Rubiano and Diaz will now travel back to Colombia to take part in the national championships on February 8th, the rest of the line-up will travel to Italy in time for the European season to start on February 1st, at GP Cycliste La Marsellaise, in France.

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