Vuelta Etapa 14 – Vicente Reynes «A difficult day for IAM Cycling»

07 September 2014

IAM Cycling

The first of the three big mountain stages at the Vuelta will not be recorded as among the best races for the IAM Cycling team.  In an exciting day of racing, Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp) won the stage while Alberto Contador managed to defend his overall lead.  However, the highlights were few for the Swiss Pro Continental team, especially since it was deprived of the services of its climber, Johann Tschopp, even before the start of the stage.

Vuelta Spagna 2014

Suffering from flu-like symptoms which included a high fever, Tschopp was unable to start the stage.  To make matters worse, Dominic Klemme was forced to abandon the race due to extreme exhaustion.

Vuelta Spagna 2014

Vicente Reynes stood out again as the team’s best placed rider on the stage, in spite of the difficult climb that averaged 15% gradient for more than 2 kilometers, though his 71st place 12’50 behind told the tale of just how difficult the day was.  By the end, Reynes was not the happiest of men.

“We had to hold on just to make it to the final climb.  It was a tough day for IAM Cycling with the loss of two of our teammates.  To add to our woes, we did not have a rider to slip into the 23-strong breakaway.  Once the race really got going, we found ourselves dispersed among the trailing groups.  But I have not lost my confidence.  We will do everything we can to get some color back in our cheeks before the end of the race, even if the upcoming stages will not be the easiest.”  

Vuelta Spagna 2014

Mario Chiesa, directeur sportif along with Rubens Bertogliati, also admitted the poor day the team suffered.

Vuelta Spagna 2014

“We really went through a Black Saturday.  But we must continue to fight and stand tall.  The team is made up of younger riders who will be learning and progressing a lot throughout the three weeks.  Today, they withstood impressive percentages in the final climb, and the 36×28 was not too big of a gear to resort to.  They can have more of the same to look forward to in the next days.”