JAPAN. Oyama: Richard Carapaz who secured the third position at the ‘Tour de France’ last week won the Men’s Road Race at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics by finishing 1:07s ahead of defending champion Wout van Aert of Belgium. Wout got a silver medal while ‘Tour De France’ champion Tadej Pogacar of Slovenia came third and secured a bronze.
The cycling track
The 234-kilometer course began at Musashinonomori Park near Tokyo and pass through the flat outskirts of Tokyo’s metropolitan area for 80 km. went up part of Mt. Fuji, finishing at Fuji International Speedway in Shizuoka Prefecture. The cyclists climbed 4,865 meters in total in terrific hot and humid weather making the race one of the toughest races in Olympic history. After that, there will be a long climb on Doushi Road with a total elevation of 1000 m. there will be a fast 15 km descent as the riders reach lake Yamanakako in Yamanashi and crossing the Kagosaka Pass.
After the descent, the race heads towards the lower slopes of Mount Fuji climbing 14.3 km with a 6.0% average incline. Soon after, the riders start climbing for 6.8 km with an average incline of 10.2% to reach a height of 1159 meters while entering the Mikuni Pass peak. After the climb, the race returns to Lake Yamanakako and the Kagosaka Pass before finishing on the Fuji Speedway circuit.
Carapez’s consistency won him Gold
The men’s road race was scheduled on the first day of the Olympics and 130 riders set off from the western suburbs of Tokyo in the quest for Olympic Gold Medal. A difficult terrain means only the toughest rules the race. The race witnessed several favorites failing to overcome the challenging terrain. Carapaz maintained a steady speed and finally on the approach to Fuji International speedway he increased his lead by more than a minute from his nearest competitors to snatch gold for Ecuador.
Men’s Olympic Road Race Result
- Richard Carapaz from Ecuador, Time taken: 6:05:26
- Wout Van Aert from Belgium, Time taken: + 1:07
- Tadej Pogacar from Slovenia, Time taken: + 1:07
- Bauke Mollema from Netherlands, Time taken: + 1:07
- Michael Woods from Canada, Time taken: + 1:07
- Brandon McNulty from USA, Time taken: + 1:07
- David Gaudu from France, Time taken: + 1:07
- Rigoberto Uran from Colombia, Time taken: + 1:07
- Adam Yates from Great Britain, Time taken: + 1:07
- Maximilian Schachmann from Germany, Time taken: + 1:21
Born on 29 May 1993, Richard Carapaz is an Ecuadorian cyclist who rides for UCI WorldTeam Ineos Grenadiers. He was the first Ecuadorian rider to win the 2019 ‘Giro d’Italia’event. Nicknamed “La Locomotora”, Carapaz was mentored by one of his teachers, former Olympic racing cyclist Juan Carlos Rosero in his school days. Rosero started a cycling club in school.
Carapaz began his career with amateur teams in Ecuador, Colombia, and Spain. His first professional victory came in 2018, with a stage and the overall win in the ‘Vuelta a Asturias’ event. In 2019, Carapaz won both ‘Vuelta a Asturias’ and ‘Giro d’Italia’. Carapaz joined Team ‘Ineos’ at the beginning of the 2020 season on a three-year deal.
Tokyo Olympics 2020
Earlier, the much-delayed 2020 Summer Olympics at Tokyo got off to a huge ceremonial start amidst Coronavirus threat. The opening ceremony was a much toned down affair with countries participating with small delegations.
Cycling at Olympic Games
Cycling as a game was included in the first modern Olympic Games held in the year 1896. It is one of the five sports to have been featured at every Olympic Games. There are currently four cycling disciplines on the Olympic program. The cycling competitions of the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo will feature 22 events in five disciplines. Olympic cycling gradually evolved to include women’s competitions too.
Click here to view the complete schedule of Tokyo Summer Olympics 2020.
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