What's Cool In Road Cycling

Maestre The Maestro, Stage 1 Of The Vuelta Asturias

The 5 stage Vuelta Asturias started to-day with a surprize win for Josй Manuel Maestre of Relax-Fuenlabrada. On a hilly course from Oviedo to Llanes of 166.3 kilometres, he managed to keep the peloton at bay.

The Vuelta Asturias has allways been a hard race, and this year is no different. A mountain mans race with 5 stages all with their fairshare of ups and downs. Past winners: Beloki, Jalabert, Olano, Indurain and last year Leonardo Piepoli, show that their is never a lucky winner.

Piepoli returns this year as does Beloki, also in the frame for final honours, Zulle, Botero, Osa, Ullrich? and Sevilla.

To-days first stage finished with two big climbs in the last 44 kilometres and a downhill finish in to Llanes. Maestre (Relax) was on his own with over 2 minutes in hand on the start of the second climb, the Alto del Llamigo, Koldol Gil of ONCE tried to cross to him , but with the strong Milaneza-MSS team, fresh from the Tour of Romandy, doing the work behind he did’nt stand a chance. It was cat and mouse all the way to the finish, with the bunch snaping on Maestre’s heels on the line.

Tomorrows stage is 153 kilometres from Llanes to Gijon, two 2nd. cat and one 3rd. cat climbs.

Stage 1 Result and Overall:

1st. J.Maestre (Relax) 3:56:10.
2nd. A.Edo (MIL) at :02 secs.
3rd. W.Beneteau (Brioch) same time.
4th. M.Gentili (DOM) same time.
5th. A.Moos (PHO) same time.
6th. C.Torrent (PAT) same time.

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