In a vibrant and tough battle, Esteban Chaves (EF Education-EasyPost) triumphed in the Colombian National Road Championship, held in Bucaramanga, after showing off alone for the last six kilometers of the route.
The Bogota rider excelled at the end, closing several cuts, proposing attacks to deservedly keep the tricolor jersey, which he will wear in Europe this year. The other two drawers on the podium ended with a heroic outcome, with Daniel Martínez (Ineos Grenadiers) beating a reborn Nairo Quintana in the sprint.
In the early going, the large batch licensed four adventurers. The first escape of the competition was led by Fabio Duarte (Team Medellín-EPM), Brayan Hernández (Colombia Pact for Sport GW Shimano), Germán Chaves (Team Sistecrédito), Nestor Rueda (Liga de Cundinamarca), and Diego Ochoa (EPM- GO RIGO GO), but before entering the fourth lap they were neutralized.
The calm in the main group did not last long, then Einer Rubio (Movistar) from Boyacá launched a counterattack that would be joined a few minutes later by Sebastián Castaño (Orgullo Paisa), Esneider Baez (Liga del Tolima is passion), Germán Chaves (Team Sistecrédito ) and Diego Ochoa (EPM-GO RIGO GO). The last two came from the initial break, but were quickly captured.
On the sixth lap the quartet was neutralized and then Juan Diego Alba (Movistar-Best PC) tried his luck alone; After a while, Jesús David Peña (Team Jayco AlUla) and Juan Manuel Barboza (Orgullo Paisa) also took risks, but arriving at the ascent section, they were hit by Miguel Ángel López who made a first attack, which ended up selecting the group of favorites .
From there the skirmishes began, until with 25 kilometers to go, the “World Tour” made an appearance led by Brandon Rivera (Ineos Grenadiers) and Esteban Chaves (EF Education- EasyPost), who in the company of Miguel Ángel ‘Superman’ López (Team Medellín) formed a cut that forced the persecution of a group of already selected favorites, to which Nairo Quintana and the other ‘Gallos’ responded.
Entering the final kilometers, Brandon Rivera (Ineos Grenadiers) was very active, but his action was countered by Javier Jamaica (Team Medelín-EPM) and Esteban Chaves (EF Education-EasyPost), who reached the lead of the race quickly.
6 kilometers from the finish, “Chavito” took down all his rivals and left alone in search of the national champion’s tricolor jersey. The rhythm of the Bogotá native allowed him to gradually widen the gap and raise his arms at the finish line, behind Daniel Felipe Martínez he beat Nairo Quintana one-on-one to complete the podium of the competition.
My priority is still racing in Europe
A very nice race, fast and intense due to the heat, but in the end we were able to be with the best. We are still active, with great enthusiasm, with discipline, dedication and motivation”, added Nairo Quinta, a native of Cómbita, Boyacá.
Likewise, the beetle thanked all the people who turned out to the streets of the Santander capital to witness the race. “Thank you all for witnessing this beautiful moment, this very important moment for me. Enjoy it, it’s for all of you. Congratulate my podium mates. Grateful to the GW team, who helped me all day. Congratulations to everyone,” added ‘Nairoman’.
Finally, Quintana made it clear that his priority continues to be racing in European cycling and warned that in the coming days he will travel to the old continent to define his future. “I will have a trip to Europe and that is what God wants. Let it be the team that can give me the best”, concluded Quintana.