Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers) on one of the earlier climbs during stage 14 of the Vuelta a España.

Richard Carapaz withdraws from the Vuelta after a busy few months

Carapaz called it a day on stage 14 of the Vuelta, closing out a busy block of racing that included the Tour de Suisse, Tour de France and the Tokyo Olympics.

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Richard Carapaz withdrew from the Vuelta a España during stage 14 to Pico Villuercas, ending a busy racing block that started at the Tour de Suisse in early June.

After a busy spring, the 2019 Giro d’Italia champion took May off to build into a summer of stage racing. He started off with a bang, taking a stage win and the overall victory at the Tour de Suisse, earning himself a higher billing in the Ineos Grenadiers line-up for the Tour de France.

While bad luck befell his teammates early in the Tour, Carapaz showed consistent form from beginning to end, eventually finishing third behind Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) and Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma). Just six days later he soloed to victory in the Olympic road race in Tokyo, making history by winning Ecuador’s second ever gold medal.

Having finished the 2020 Vuelta just 24 seconds down on Primož Roglič, Carapaz entered the 2021 edition as an outside bet for the overall. However, he showed signs of struggling as early as stage 3, and after two weeks of hot and hard racing, the Ineos Grenadiers rider had nothing more to give. He leaves seven teammates behind, including Egan Bernal who looked good on stage 14, finishing in a small group of top GC contenders.

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