Sergio Higuita and Richard Carapaz turn the Volta around on the Costa Daurada
March 26 th 2022 - 18:47
(Cambrils, 26-03-2022) - The Volta a Catalunya 2022 has made a complete change of script in its sixth stage, a hilly day on the Costa Daurada with 168.6 kilometres between Salou and Cambrils in which the Olympic champion Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers), stage winner, and the Colombian national champion Sergio Higuita (Bora-hansgrohe), new leader, have starred in a breakaway for the memory.
After a few kilometres in which Steven Kruijswijk, Simone Petilli and Casper Pedersen stood out, the battle in the peloton was led by the great riders of the Volta and continued until the finish at the Coll de les Llebres-Mussara (1st category), which was crowned at the 41st kilometre of the stage. There, a group of about twenty riders formed at the front of the race, which included most of the favourites but not the leader Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates).
Olympic champion Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers), his team-mate Lucas Plapp and the third-placed rider in the general classification before the start of the stage, Colombian champion Sergio Higuita (Bora hansgrohe) broke away from the race and left all their rivals behind in a rain-soaked start to the stage that added to the epic nature of the day. After the work, finally the Australian champion Lucas Plapp was left behind.
The two riders also broke away at the Coll de Capafonts (2nd category) and passed the intermediate sprint at Prades, after which they gained a maximum advantage of more than 3 minutes over the leader's group in which UAE Team Emirates was working. Subsequently, the advantage was reduced thanks to the collaboration of the UNO-X Pro Cycling team.
It was still ahead the Coll de la Teixeta (2nd category), third of the passes of this day of great cycling on the roads of the Costa Daurada, when Carapaz and Higuita were two minutes ahead. There, who took the lead in the chasing group was Juan Ayuso (UAE Team Emirates), who rode alone from the leader's group on the descent, gaining a bonus at the intermediate sprint on the Viaducte dels Masos. Despite having nearly 30 seconds, Ayuso ended up joining a chasing group that included second-placed Nairo Quintana (Arkéa-Samsic), the young Carlos Rodríguez (INEOS Grenadiers) and several Team Bahrain-Merida riders (Wouter Poels, Dylan Teuns and Hermann Pernsteiner).
They all regrouped on the approach to Cambrils, with a group of around forty riders who reached the finish 48 seconds behind the leaders. At the finish, in a thrilling sprint, Richard Carapaz (INEOS Grenadiers) took the stage win by just a few centimetres over Sergio Higuita (Bora-hansgrohe), the new leader of the Volta a Catalunya before its explosive final stage in Barcelona with six climbs in the Castell de Montjuic, which the Colombian faces with just 16 seconds ahead of the Ecuadorian.