Monday, January 24

Erviti runs out of prize in Nîmes

  • The Movistar route captain slipped into the day’s break and had to settle for second place on the 12th stage.

  • Pogacar and the rest of the figures raised their feet and took the day calmly to arrive within 15 minutes of the escape.

“Go, ErvitiCome on! “Is the cry that reaches the runner who knows that when the train stops at the station you have to get on the wagon.” Not every day a gregarious person disputes a stage of the Tour “. Imanol Erviti arrives second and resigned to the avenue Salvador Allende of Nîmes. He entered the escape by chance, because there was a lurch and suddenly he found 12 others with asphalt in between. It happened when the wind stopped blowing and a certain chicha calm took over the platoon.

Walked Erviti, 37 years old and 12 Tours with him, escaped but worried because he is the one who must protect Enric Mas in stages threatened by the wind, such as this Thursday en route to Nîmes and on Friday en route to Carcassonne. Because Erviti He is the archetype of gregarious and the captain of the route, orders and commands, of the Movistar. He is an endeavor of the route, a domestic as he was called before, one of those who go down to the car to get jerry cans, those who lend the bike if the boss loses it and those who receive the order to pull so that the Leader sits at the wheel sheltered from the air and running with less wear.

But nobody is there to give anything away. And much less the Movistar, and why But he already had by his side Jorge Arcas, debutant but who is playing a good Tour away from the camera and the successes. So Erviti pull forward, seek victory and enjoy the glory of feeling like a star on television and many times head of the race with the option of fighting for the victory and adding to the two stages of the Vuelta that appear in his record a victory in the Tour .

Everything is perfect. TO Erviti his legs work, he rolls wonderfully coupled, the wind does not bother and the peloton with Tadej pogacar, who for a day has buried the hatchet, relaxes for a quarter of an hour. All expensive. The 13 began to attack each other and little by little the weakest were falling; without strength it is not even worth calling Julian Alaphilippe.

The key moment

It is done Erviti with only two rivals. And then comes the attack of the German Nils Politt, partner of Peter sagan that this Thursday said goodbye to the Tour. There are 10 kilometers to go. Neither does the heat tighten, nor does the rain threaten and to make matters worse the wind has calmed down. “When he demarró I was at the limit. It was simply a matter of legs.” It is already known. Either the gap closes immediately or seconds begin to fall before a runner who feels animated, who hears the shouting of the residents of Nîmes, who hits his helmet as if celebrating that his head is clear and that he will achieve the dream he is pursuing, a Tour stage. It is the one that eludes Erviti, who knows that he must go back to work for But, take care of it in the plain as it does Alejandro Valverde on the mountain, the one that the Mallorcan cyclist choked on just two kilometers from the top of Ventoux. There he was short of breath. The wounds from Sunday’s fall ached and the podium in Paris turned uphill. But he promises to keep fighting … and with Erviti by his side. To victory.

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