Second sprint finish, in which Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan) took the victory of the fourth stage of the Tour Colombia 2024 disputed between the municipalities of Paipa and Zipaquirá on a route of 181 kilometers on mostly flat terrain. The Cundinamarca-born Rodrigo Contreras, from Nu Colombia, holds on as leader of the general classification.

The British rider overcame Fernando Gaviria (Movistar Team) and Nelson Soto (Forte Petrolike – Androni Giocattoli), who finished second and third, in the last meters in a tight sprint.

As for the general classification, in the first positions there were no major changes and Rodrigo Contreras (Nu Colombia) remained as leader of the race with 4 seconds ahead of Harold Tejada (Astana Qazaqstan).

The breakaway of the day was led by Brayan Sánchez (Team Medellín-EPM), Efrén Santos (Canel’s – Java), Franklin Joel Revelo (Team Saitel), Carlos Andrés Parra (Team Saitel), Kevin Castillo (Team Sistecredito), Danny Osorio (Orgullo Paisa), Juan Diego Alba (Selección Colombia), Byron Guamá (Selección de Ecuador) and Wilson Haro (Selección de Ecuador), but in the end they were caught by the peloton.

The leading group that animated the race from the first kilometers and reached to have in their favor a difference of more than four minutes. However, due to the great work of control exercised by Nu Colombia to maintain the leadership of Rodrigo Contreras, they were caught 75 kilometers from the finish line.

Later, the Belgian team Bingoal WB and Team Corratec – Vini Fantini, began to control the peloton to separate the pure sprinters and take the definition to the bunch with a reduced group and look for the victory with Davide Persico and Niccolò Bonifazio.

However, the work of the Pro Teams was not enough and with less than 30 kilometers to go Fernando Gaviria (Movistar Team) and Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan), two of the favorites for the victory, entered the main group.

With 24 kilometers to go three riders jumped out of the bunch: Julian Cardona (Team Medellin-EPM), Laureano Rosas (Swift Carbon), Alexander Gil (Orgullo Paisa). The trio worked harmoniously, but the advantage was always controlled and at 4 kilometers the peloton caught them.

In the closing, the Mexican José Ramón Muñiz (Forte Petrolike – Androni Giocattoli) tried to surprise the sprinters, but with two thousand meters to go he was neutralized and everything was defined by the sprint in which Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan) was the fastest.

“It’s amazing to see the love for cycling here, I’m very happy to win in front of a crowd like this. We already won with Harold Tejada on the first day, and now to win again is something very special,” said Cavendish.

The 38-year-old English sprinter, who reached his 163rd victory as a professional, highlighted the work of his great sprinter who left him very well positioned in the final meters to take his first victory of the season.

“Morkov did an exceptional job of approaching, my teammates and Movistar made an effort to keep the group compact, in the end, the truth is that I had a hard time getting to the front of the peloton, it was really a great effort,” added the Astana Qazaqstan rider.

Finally, the English rider referred to his rivalry with one of his great opponents in the mass finishes and in track cycling, the Colombian Fernando Gaviria, with whom he has faced in a number of competitions around the world.

“I remember Gaviria very well, he beat me in Argentina 10 years ago. I have seen his evolution throughout this time. We have a very good relationship. It’s nice to be here sprinting with him,” Cavendish concluded.

The fourth edition of the spectacular Colombian race will continue this Saturday with the queen stage between Cota and Alto del Vino, a mountainous 138.3-kilometer stage.

Stage 4 | Paipa – Zipaquirá (181,8 km)

1 Mark CavendishAstana Qazaqstan Team4:03:34
2 Fernando GaviriaMovistar Team,,
3 Nelson Andrés SotoForte Petrolike – Androni Giocattoli,,
4 Cees BolAstana Qazaqstan Team,,
5 Jhonatan RestrepoSelección Colombia,,

Ranking General

1 Rodrigo ContrerasNu Colombia14:37:42
2 Harold TejadaAstana Qazaqstan Team0:04
3 Andrea PiccoloEF Education – EasyPost0:11
4 César David GuavitaColombia Potencia de la Vida – Strongman0:17
5 Aldemar ReyesTeam Banco Guayaquil – Bianchi,,

Source: Revista Mundo Ciclístico