A bad day in Asturias: the descent from the Sanctuary of Acebo sends Michel Ries to the hospital
62nd Vuelta Ciclista a Asturias
Stage 2: Soto de Ribera – Cangas del Narcea (171 km)
The official competition premiere of the climb to Alto del Acebo as a pass did not provide the best day for the interests of the riders of the Kometa Cycling Team. During his descent, narrow and twisty, even with an initial stretch without hardly asphalt, the Luxembourger Michel Ries suffered a crash and had to be transferred to a hospital in Oviedo, where he underwent various medical tests that revealed two small fractures in his right shoulder blade and another in the humerus that will maintain a resting season.
Ries, the main asset of the team to make a good general classification, already present in the leading group in the first stage and twenty-four in the provisional general classification, was fighting to recover time with respect to the head of the race in a frantic ascent to the Sanctuary of Acebo in which the Movistar team dynamited the race from very early.
“It’s a shame, but that’s cycling. Michel was our clear asset and we have done a good job for him”, regretted Diego Pablo Sevilla at the finish line. And Daniel Viegas agreed: “Of course it’s a shame. Let’s hope he recovers quickly and can be back very soon”. Isaac Cantón, who crossed the finish line in the 45th position just under twelve minutes from the winner, was the first of the riders of the Madrid continental line-up at the finish line.
Despite the bet to be ahead in the early stages of the ascent, where high percentages are concentrated, the very high pace imposed by Movistar selected the race very much. Richard Carapaz and Mikel Landa left together to reach the finish line at Uría street in Cangas del Narcea with 1:50 on their most immediate pursuers.
The riders of the Kometa were involved in the search for escape, as happened during the first stage with a very active Juan Camacho, but it took time to consolidate; Stefano Oldani would try it on the ramps of the Alto del Escamplero. A quartet, no runner of the continental team of the Alberto Contador Foundation present, ended up standing out and their adventure would last until the first ramps, still between the streets of Cangas, of the great port of the day.
The Vuelta a Asturias will conclude this Sunday with a 119-kilometre stage that will link Cangas del Narcea with the city of Oviedo in which, with its summit seven kilometres from the end, the pass through El Violeo stands out. The ascent to El Violeo presents demanding numbers: a 10.5% slope in its almost three kilometres of ascent. “Today has been a very hard day”, explains Viegas. “It’s been a thousand an hour all day long. The whole stage was full. It wasn’t going well at all, it was hard for me to keep up with the pace even on the plain. Even in the first long pass I stayed, but I was able to recover and return to the pack. In the last climb I had to open up and go at my own pace”.
(automatic translation, sorry for mistakes)
📸 Miki López / Vuelta Ciclista a Asturias