Latin America: a disappointing performance in the Tour de France 2018?

LatinAmerican Post summarizes some of the reasons why the continent's riders did not arrive with the yellow jersey to Paris

Leer en español: Latinoamérica: ¿una actuación decepcionante en el Tour de Francia 2018?

With the triumph of the Belgian Geraint Thomas of the Sky team, in the 2018 edition of the Tour de France, the hopes of the Latin American cyclists, mainly Colombians, of winning the maximum cyclist competition on the planet vanished again. What were the reasons for the low performance of the riders in this part of the world?

Urán, Gaviria and Bernal: was there no luck?

Venezuelan sports director Edgar Da Silva, a cycling specialist, spoke exclusively with LatinAmerican Post. Da Silva raised his position on this edition of the Tour and did not consider the performance of Latin Americans as a failure. "The performance of Latinos may not have met expectations, but cycling is like that. Before the hope for the Colombians was to participate and finish the tour and nowadays it is to win it. A Nairo can only claim the dismissal of the first day because it also returned to culminate in the top ten of the competition.

In relation to the rest of Colombians, especially Rigoberto Urán, Egan Bernal and Daniel Martínez, Da Silva said that "they are important promises, young people of 22 and 23 years of age making great figurations, which was unthinkable a few years ago. Fans do not usually forgive this, but they (cyclists) and Latin America will continue to have a strong presence in these competitions. This result cannot be a conviction".

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Nairo Quintana's case

An article by Publimetro lists the reasons for the new failure of the great favorite in Latin America: Nairo Quintana. The first reason they pin point is the spectacular fall that Quintana suffered in the fraction 18 of the competition for losing attention in the peloton. That day, the Colombian said: "The fall has hurt me a lot, everything is in pain, especially the hip, which I could not … I could hardly stand on the pedals".

On the other hand, a supposed general deconcentration is analyzed, making reference to his loss of pace and the evasion he made of some sections of the route. For example, the Colombian broke both wheels less than four kilometers from the finish line in one stage and miss a separator that made him reach a minute and a half behind.

In the final stretch of this year's Tour, the same media warned of the possible departure of the Spanish Mikel Landa of the Movistar team, in which Quintana participates. Apparently, Astana would be tempting him to return to the team he belonged to in 2014 and 2015. Landa apparently did not think it twice, because according to L'Equipe the relationship with the Colombian would have deteriorated due to the leadership in the team.

The speculations took shape in stage 20, in which Landa not being gregarious, took advantage of his time and was better in the general than his partner. In fact, no team work was observed in favor of the interests of the Boyacá. If Landa leaves, Nairo will be the undisputed leader of Movistar in 2019 with Alejandro Valverde on the verge of retirement.

While Christopher Froome and Geraint Thomas counted on the invaluable support of the Colombian Egan Bernal, Nairo did not have a dedicated gregarious. The strategy of Movistar to leave free Alejandro Valverde, Mikel Landa and Quintana, it seems that it did not work.


LatinAmerican Post | Onofre Zambrano
Translated from “Latinoamérica: ¿una actuación decepcionante en el Tour de Francia 2018?”

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