The Spanish cyclist is the king of the mountains in the HTV Cup
Javier Perez first crosses the Ngoan Muc Pass during the HTV Cup on April 27, 2021. Photo by VnExpress / Van Thuan.
An excellent performance over two mountain passes saw Spaniard Javier Perez win the polka dot jersey in the Vietnam multi-day men’s national cycle race.
The 19th stage of the race, also known as the HTV Cup, was the most difficult Tuesday yet, the course leading the runners from the town of Phan Rang to the mountain town of Da Lat. It pitted two experienced cyclists, Perez and the French Loĩc Desriac.
Perez was first at Ngoan Muc Pass and second at Prenn Pass, and claimed the jersey given to the rider with the most mountain points.
But Desriac wears the yellow jersey of the leader of the race after passing Perez at the Col du Prenn and finishing the stage in 3 hours, 21 minutes and 38 seconds.
He said: “I was happy to keep the yellow jersey at this stage. I want to thank my teammates because without them I couldn’t have done it. I spent the whole day reviewing his previous races ( Perez) to understand his style. And choose the appropriate strategy. “
Loĩc Desriac wins the 19th stage of the HTV Cup on April 27. Photo by VnExpress / Van Thuan.
The race continues on Wednesday with 20 laps around Xuan Huong Lake in Da Lat for a total distance of 51 km.
The 2,450km race with 22 stages totaled nearly 2 billion VND ($ 86,860) this year.
It started at Cao Bang in the northern mountains on April 6 and will end at the Independence Palace in HCMC on April 30, National Reunification Day.
The Covid-19 pandemic prevented the organizers from bringing in foreign teams. Perez from HCMC and Descriac from Dong Nai live in Vietnam and are therefore unaffected by travel restrictions.