Ecuadorian Richard Carapaz Wins Gold in Men’s Road Race


TOKYO – Six days after finishing third in the Tour de France, Ecuadorian cyclist Richard Carapaz flew to Japan, battling steamy conditions, overexerting his body and winning the gold medal in the men’s road race on Saturday.

Carapaz, 28, went deep for a closing blast, left Brandon McNulty from the United States with about six kilometers left, and ran all the way to the end, recording a 6:05:26 finish comfortably ahead of the next drivers.

Looking over his shoulder and unable to see anyone nearby, Carapaz continued towards the cheering crowd at the finish line at Fuji International Speedway. A few feet away, he slammed his handlebars and raised his arms.

It was his first Olympic medal and only the second gold in Ecuadorian history. In 1996 Jefferson Pérez won first prize in the men’s 20km race walk.

Belgian Wout van Aert finished 1:07 behind Carapaz for the silver medal. And Tadej Pogacar from Slovenia, who played Carapaz less than a week ago He made a crazy final leap to secure the bronze medal as he won his second Tour de France in a row.

The competition, which started with about 130 riders, was a war of attrition.

The 234-kilometer challenging course was made worse by intense heat and humidity. It started around Musashinonomori Park just west of Tokyo and started at Mt. Fuji finishes at the Fuji International Speedway in Shizuoka Prefecture. On parts of the track outside of Tokyo, drivers passed small towns and fans lining the road.

In total, the cyclists had to climb 4,865 meters, making it one of the toughest races in Olympic history.

For most of the race, the leading riders gathered together. But slowly, they began to fall back from the tough final climbs. Belgian Greg Van Avermaet, 2016 gold medalist, crashed with about 52 kilometers left.

Twenty kilometers later, Canadians McNulty, Pogacar and Michael Woods made their moves towards the front. Soon, McNulty and Carapaz took the lead. But in the last six kilometers Carapaz was too strong; He went to the finish line alone.



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