TEAMS FROM COLOMBIA, MEXICO, CUBA AND ITALY WILL CONTEST THE VUELTA AL TÁCHIRA

CARACAS. Teams from Colombia, Mexico, Cuba and Italy confirmed their participation in the next edition of the Vuelta al Táchira, which will be held between the 12th and the 21st of this month, said the head of the organizing committee of the most important tour of Venezuela, William Rodríguez

Rodriguez said in an interview with EFE, "GW Shimano with continental license UCI, Corplasticos and JB Sportswear, who make life in the great races of America", will be the representatives of New Granada in the classic Andean LIII.

In addition, the Mexican team Arenas, who knows the route and knows the difficulties of the route, will return to the competition, which won in good form the Venezuelan Jonathan Salinas in 2017.

Rodriguez added that "the Italian professional cyclist Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec, Professional Continental category, which participates in the UCI Continental Circuits, is returning to this important event."

The Italian team will arrive in Venezuela "before competing in the Colombia Oro y Paz cycling race", which will have its first edition in February of this 2018.

In front of Androni will be the experienced leader Gianni Savio, connoisseur and winner of the competition with cyclists who have triumphed in the Giro d'Italia, such as Leonardo Sierra and the Venezuelan "Condor", José Rujano.

Meanwhile, Cuba's cycling team confirmed its participation for the second consecutive year, despite not having obtained favorable results in 2017.

Rodriguez showed his enthusiasm by pointing out that the Colombian team GW Shimano will bring José Zerpa, who has a great track record in European races such as the Tour de France and the Giro d'Italia, as leader.

However, the president of the organizing committee of the Vuelta al Táchira did not disclose the names of other foreign cyclists who will take part in the race.

He did explain that delegations from the Dominican Republic and Switzerland faced legal "paperwork" problems and could not be present at the competition.

The best-performing foreigners in the harsh Andean test are the Colombians, who have won it up to 18 times.
However, no coffee grower conquers the Vuelta al Táchira since Hernán Buenahora did it in 2007.

Last year the best placed foreigner was the Colombian youth Ivan Ramiro Sosa, who finished in seventh place 3 minutes and 48 seconds behind the leader.

Rodriguez had already told Efe at the beginning of last December that the Venezuelan test was an opportunity for the New Granada cyclists to go ahead before the Colombia Oro y Paz turn, and that the track would not suffer major changes compared to the one played in the 2017 edition .

On the other hand, the local Jonathan Salinas, of the Lotería del Táchira club, will try to obtain a new title in a circuit he knows as few Venezuelan cyclists.

The Vuelta al Táchira, ranking 2.2 of the UCI, will consist of 10 stages with a general layout of 1,445.2 kilometers.

It will have 55 intermediate prizes, of which 40 will be for the "sprint" modality, while the remaining 15 will be in the mountain category. (EFE)