Ecuadorian Richard Carapaz Leads the 2024 Tour De France

He is the first Latin American cyclist to win the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España.

On Monday, Richard Carapaz became leader in the general classification of the 2024 Tour de France. He is the first Ecuadorian ciclist to achieve this position and the fourth Latin American to do so in history.


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“For me, this yellow jersey is very special and it was a dream to be able to wear it. This is something historic,” said the 31-year-old athlete in the Piedmont region of Italy.

Carapaz, winner of the 2019 Tour, third in the 2021 Giro d’Italia, and second in the 2020 Vuelta a España, saw his opportunity at the finish line in Bologna. Yesterday, he finished in fourth place but with the same time as Slovenian Tadej Pogacar. For Carapaz, the yellow jersey was a matter of consistency points. It was about finishing well in Turin, a stage promised to the “sprinters,” which meant taking risks.

“We knew it was very dangerous and it was the first sprint… there were a couple of dangerous curves in the final stretch. But the team made a great effort, positioned me well in the final stretch, and supported me in the sprint,” Carapaz commented.

“I didn’t arrive in the best conditions to the Tour. After a crash, I had an infection, which prevented me from preparing in the best conditions. I had doubts because in the Tour if you don’t come one hundred percent, it’s very difficult. But in the previous months, I had prepared very well,” he said.

Grand Tour jersey collection completed for Carapaz ✅

The Ecuadorian has now worn the leader’s jersey at all three Grand Tours, being the 25th rider and the first Latin American to do so ????

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— Velon CC (@VelonCC) July 1, 2024

“These days I’ve been feeling better, I suffered in the first stage, but in the second, I felt better, and that gives me confidence. Now I want to keep trying, see how far I can go. Anyway, after achieving this, everything that comes will already be a bonus,” the Ecuadorian cyclist pointed out.

Carapaz is not closing any doors from now on. In Bologna, he rubbed shoulders with Pogacar and Danish rider Jonas Vingegaard, the winners of the last four Tour de France editions, and that boosted his morale, at least to fight for a podium finish.

“There is still a lot of Tour ahead and a lot of toughness. I’m going to try to do my best, I’ll try to fight with them in the upcoming stages,” he commented.

On Tuesday, the first test will come on the slopes of the Galibier, a special category pass that will be climbed in the fourth stage. “It will be a tough day and it will be difficult to defend the jersey… Every day I’m feeling better, and I hope to be ready to give it a try,” Carapaz said, conveying that he had his family and country on his mind.

“This is a very special moment for me. I’ve worked hard these last few years, and that means being away from family. I make this effort for them. I know it’s worth it. Wearing yellow makes up for all this effort and all this time away from home,” he affirmed.

“It also means a lot to a country that has very few riders in the elite. I hope it contributes to cycling continuing to grow there,” he said, referring to Ecuador.

One man completed his Cuba challenge and set a new record for cycling around the Cuban island.

— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) April 25, 2017