Saturday 6 August 2011

UCI responds to riders' Vuelta concerns

The UCI says it will investigate claims by riders that some parts of this year's Vuelta a Espana are too steep.

Riders have raised concerns that one or two sections are excessively difficult with the notorious vertical Alto de l'Angliru climb coming in for particular criticism. One rider said he doubted it'd be possible to ride up it "on a goat."

Vuelta organisers claim it's a perfectly acceptable ascent, pointing out that it was climbed several times pre-WW2 by riders on wrought iron bikes weighing several tons, even though they also had to cope with the added weight of spare parts and huge moustaches which international cycling rules demanded all riders carried in those days (but didn't have to cope with anything like modern anti-doping regulations, even the kind they have in Spain).

Meanwhile, LeopardTrek's Jens Voigt says that if the section is deemed too difficult, he'll be happy to stamp it flat to save the trouble of having to re-route the stage so near to the start date.

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