Neither Enric Mas, nor Alex Aranburu, nor García Cortina, nor Fernando Gaviria. Movistar’s top runner this season is Oier Lazkano. With that of the fourth stage of the Vuelta a Burgos, this Friday in Prado, then he adds four victories in 2023. There is no other rider from the telephone team who has shone as much as this 23-year-old from Gasteiz from Alava.
He surprised in March with second place in Across Flanders, a one-day Flemish event won by Christophe Laporte. Two months later, in May, he prevailed in the final classification of Boucles de la Mayenne, where he also won a stage. His power was once again evident in the Spanish Championship en route. Attack from a distance and suffering in the final ascent to withstand Ayuso’s reaction. Lazkano had been second a few days earlier in the time trial.
Custom does not detract one iota of happiness from Gasteiz: “Winning with the Spanish champion’s jersey, on top of that so close to Álava, in Burgos, such a beautiful race… It’s something precious,” he said. He leaked in a nine-runner breakaway. «Last year, in the Clunia day and with a finish similar to this, it seemed that we could reach the sprint and the break ended up arriving, so we had decided that we wanted to go to the breakaway. I knew the first port, Cubilla, well, because it was close to home, and I tried to be there».
The resolution of the stage was for the final climb of two kilometers, stretched out, on the outskirts of Pradoluengo. «I would have liked to try it in the final stretch from before, but I hit a lot of air in the face and it was immolating. We would have to face the sprint and I did it with confidence, because I knew that going first in the succession of four final corners I had all the options, and that’s how it was ».
After a fall frustrated his chance of victory in the Clásica de Ordizia and his participation in the Clásica de San Sebastián, the Vuelta a España will be the first three-week race for Lazkano. Primoz Roglic retains the leader’s jersey of the Burgos round. He will try to keep it this Saturday in the last stage, ending in Lagunas de Neila, a steep climb that punishes moments of weakness.
“A pity,” laments Iturria
In the Tour of Portugal, Mikel Iturria was left with honey on his lips after signing another second place for Euskaltel-Euskadi. «I have tried to surprise several times until I have managed to open a few meters, although three riders from behind have hooked me. I have not finished off the great work of the whole team throughout the day. A shame to do second. Now we have two days left that we face with all the options open to win the general and by teams, “declared the urnietarra. This Saturday, final on high in the Sanctuary of Senhora de Graça.
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