Chanting “thank you, hero,” dozens of cyclists and fans followed Ecuador’s Richard Carapaz — who finished fourth in the 2018 Giro d’Italia — in a triumphal procession through the streets of Quito on Thursday.
Cyclists and fans gathered at La Carolina Park in downtown Quito, where political rallies and entertainment events are often held, to welcome Carapaz, who made history by becoming the first Ecuadorian cyclist to come in first in one of the Giro’s stages.
Carapaz arrived escorted by cars and police motorcycles while making the victory sign, as the crowd chanted on.
Daniel Serrano, a physical therapist who worked with Carapaz, said that the 25-year-old cyclist is nicknamed “the locomotive,” as he can “cycle uphill like a motorcycle. He goes uphill as if it were nothing, calmly, with little effort.”
Serrano said that Caparaz’s career is an example for current and future cyclists.
Tadeo, 11, a devoted fan of Carapaz, seemed to agree. “He is my inspiration for cycling. I met him once and his performance at the Giro d’Italia was very impressive,” the youngster said. “I should be at school, but I came to see him,” Tadeo said, still wearing his school uniform.
Carapaz said that he was not expecting the warm welcome, telling his fans to “never stop dreaming, everything can be achieved in life.”
Credit: Alianza News, http://noticias.alianzanews.com