Stage 4 of the Volta Catalunya brought the peloton to the snow covered Pyrenees of La Molina. The queen stage was 188km and went over four climbs each progressively harder than the last, including the HC climb Alt de la Creueta. To give you an idea of how cold and what elevation we were at, there were people skiing along side of me as I walked to the finish.
Needless to say the difficult course made for an animated race from the beginning. A breakaway got away early, including Cannondale-Garmin’s Tom Danielson for the second day in a row, along with Riccardo Zoidl (Trek), Jerome Coppel (IAM), Jose Herrada (Movistar) and Loic Chetout (Cofidis).
Pierre Rolland was dropped during the putting Bart De Clerq (Lotto Soudal) in the leaders jersey 21 seconds ahead of Richie Porte. The groupetto finished 27:49 back.
Stage 5: Alp-VallsThis stage starts at the bottom of the La Molina climb and takes over 195.4km of mostly flat and gradual roads. With one climb towards the end, a category 2 Alt de Lilla (4.1km, 4.8%, max. 7%) From there it’s a 10km descent to the finish.
Writing this post after an emotionally jam packed two days. I never know how much of my personal feelings I should share in my write-ups. I try and keep my articles concise and to the point. One of my pet peeves is trying to sift through novel length articles or bad TV coverage to get the bits I really want. But the excitement, anxiety and sometimes heartbreak you feel watching the ones you love compete in one of the hardest sports in the world is unlike any other. Knowing that anything and everything is completely out of your control. 99% of the time it isn’t going to work out but we do it for those 1% days. The ones that can only be described as magic.