Panama City.- Just 24 hours after his 26th birthday, the Canadian Pier-André Cote gave himself the title of continental road champion and the ticket for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, on Sunday and closing day of the Pan American Championship of Road Cycling, which was successfully held for the first time in Central America.

The Canadian took advantage of a last break of nine riders with two laps to go on the 12.8-kilometre circuit to impose his rhythm and unseat the Colombian favorites, who left their entire troop in the largest peloton to the surprise of most of the specialists. Well, even Miguel Ángel “Superman” López himself did not finish the race.

The 204.8 kilometers were won by Cote in 4:47:53 hours, the same time as the Argentine Nicolás Tivani, silver medalist; and another Canadian, Charles-Etienne Chrétien, who completed the podium with bronze.

Cote, holder of Canada in 2022 in this modality and member of the Human Powered Health professional team, told the media after the award that “I never thought that we could defeat the Colombians, but once the last leak occurred My teammate and I just set out to succeed.”

In the race, 110 riders started and 75 finished, which shows that the pace of speed (42.68 km/h) was very strong for 35 riders who gave up on reaching the finishing line. The overwhelming heat that emanates from this geographical area also wreaked havoc on the hopes of many runners.

This road race was colored by constant breakaways by cyclists from Ecuador, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, but only the last one bore fruit from the little mileage left until the end and that the nine breakaways worked as a group towards a podium, among them who were two Canadian runners, an Argentine, a Uruguayan, an Ecuadorian, two Brazilians, a Costa Rican and a Guatemalan.

The Panamanian with the best performance was Christofer Jurado (4:48:29), in 22nd place. Jurado had been proclaimed monarch in the recently celebrated Central American Road Championship, which was also held on the isthmus, from April 14 to 18 last .

Thus concluded the 37th edition of the Pan American Road Championship, the first to be held in a Central American nation. By country, Colombia triumphed in the medal table with (4-5-1), followed by Chile (2-2-3), the United States (2-0-0), Canada (1-1-2), Ecuador (1 -0-0), Costa Rica (0-1-0), Argentina (0-1-0), while Bermuda, Mexico, Brazil and Cuba added a bronze each.