In the first day of the competition of the 2017 Brazil Ride, three champions returned to the podium, with a mere 36-second interval. Two times champion Hans Becking (NED) and his partner Sebastian Fini (DEN) were the fastest, completing the 21-kilometre prologue in 49min42. Runner-ups were Henrique Avancini, winner in 2013, and Jiri Novak (CZE), winner in 2014 and 2015 with Hans, in 50min08, and Italians Samuele Porro and Andrea Righettini in third, in 50min18.
Top 5 duos were completed with a favourite team, and one surprise. In fourth place came Michele Casagrande (ITA) and Fabian Rabensteiner (ITA), who is the present champion of the open category, who suffered an impressive crash down the Santa stairway, and Brazilians Mario Antonio Veríssimo and Kennedi Sampaio in fifth, a team that holds the white shirt, worn by the best athletes of the Americas. After knowing about their win and the possession of the yellow shirt, Becking assessed the first day.
“I believe Fini and I had a really good day. Our strategy was going full gas. The temperature was high and it was the first time we competed together, and I think we are a very good team. We have 96% to go, nothing happened yet”, declared Becking. “It was very hot out there, and I’m not used to the heat. I still have to get used to this kind of racing, and with Hans it’s also the first time. It’s all new for me, I don’t do many stage races”, assessed Fini.
Also among the podium contenders, Henrique Avancini made his assessment of the first day with Jiri Novak. “It was a very positive result. The winner duo is very fast, and will probably ride better in the short stages. I think it is not likely that Fini will ride so well in the longer stages”, said Avancini.
After Rabensteiner’s crash, the duo number 2 from Trek Selle San Marco showed that they are podium contenders, with the third place today. “It’s good, I liked to race with my new teammate, Andrea, he is really good in short tracks. I liked the course. We didn’t make mistakes, we pushed hard”, told Porro. “I’m happy about our result today. I was on the wheel of my teammate Samuele, he kept a very good pace, and did well on the corners. I’m a little bit scared about tomorrow, since I’ve never ridden 140 kilometres in my life.
Among the women, the gap between the top 3 showed that the duo formed by Brazilian Raiza Goulão, winner in 2015, and the French Margot Moschetti, a Brasil Ride rookie, is the favorite for the win in 2017. The winners of the prologue completed the course in 59min38, versus Roberta Stopa and Mariana Marques 1h06min53. Germans Ivonne Kraft and Naima Diesner came in third, with 1h10min19.
“I’m actually happy with the heat here today, because in Spain, during summer, it was even hotter. I’m happy for the technical superiority of the prologue, which was very different from what I had experienced in 2015, when I won. It was amazing, and we could have a taste of what’s about to come. Margot did well, and surprised me. She is strong on the flat sections, and will set the pace on the long stages”, said Goulão.
Stage Two of Brazil Ride
One of the two longest stages of Brasil Ride, the second day will have 138 km of riding and 2,199 meters elevation gain, linking Vila Brasil Ride in Arraial d’Ajuda and Guaratinga, camp site for 800 people, including athletes and staff. Riders will leave the beautiful landscape of the Discovery Coast beaches and head to the Southern Bahia mountains, a region with stunning scenery. Crossing Porto Seguro’s Pau Brasil National Park (PNPB) for the second time – a Brazilian historical site and area of conservation of the Pau-Brasil tree – which was one of the great innovations of last Brasil Ride.
Brasil Ride 2017 program – 558,2 km – 11.379 m
16/10 – Monday, 8h (local time)/9h (Brasília) – Stage 2: 138 km and 2.199 m, from Arraial d’Ajuda to Guaratinga
17/10 – Tuesday, 8h (local time)/9h (Brasília) – Stage 3: 74 km and 2.559 m, in Guaratinga
18/10 – Wednesday, 8h (local time)/9h (Brasília) – Stage 4: 90 km and 2.712 m, in Guaratinga
19/10 – Thursday, 8h (local time)/9h (Brasília) – Stage 5: 130 km and 1.974 m, way back to Arraial d’Ajuda
20/10 – Friday, 10h (local time)/11h (Brasília) – Stage 6: 31,8 km and 564 m XCO, in Arraial d’Ajuda
21/10 – Saturday, 9h (local time)/10h (Brasília) – Stage 7: 73,4 km e 1.041 m, the last stage in Arraial d’Ajuda and Trancoso