Giro d’Italia 2014: Viva Colombia – why this year’s Corsa Rosa belongs to the men from Latin America

Nairo Quintana leads the way as countrymen take charge in Italy

Big things were expected of Fabio Duarte this season and the 27-year-old, fourth at the Giro del Trentino appears to have grown in strength as the three weeks have worn on at the Corsa Rosa. A challenge for the top ten overall has not materialised, but top ten finishes in Sestola and Savona showed what he is capable of, and Duarte – who already boasted two second-place finishes at the Giro prior to this season – has added two more to his CV since.

Fabio Duarte mounted a serious challenge to catch Arredondo, completing a Colombian one-two for the stage (pic: Sirotti)

On both occasions, Duarte was denied on big climbs – the Pan de Montecampione and Rifugio Panarotta only by a solo escapee. Duarte’s spirited chase of Arredondo on stage 18, recovering having appeared dead and buried halfway up the final climb, showed his quality and earned a deserved second place, and while in the annals of cycling history the unlucky loser is seldom remembered, it can only be a matter of time before Duarte steps up from bridesmaid to bride.

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