Tour de France

Quintana counting on climbs

2015-07-14 06:58
Nairo Quintana. (Laurent Cipriani, AP)

Pau - Nairo Quintana said Monday he is banking on his strength in the mountains to claw back the time he lost to Tour de France leader Chris Froome over the first week.

The Colombian climber arrived at Monday's rest day almost two minutes behind Briton Froome at ninth in the overall standings.

But the 25-year-old is widely regarded as the best climber in the world and once the mountains begin on Tuesday, he expects to start eating into Froome's advantage.

"Froome is physically very strong, but I'm also in good form and we're going to try to do all we can to make up the difference," said the Movistar team leader.

"Up until now he's gained small victories but on short climbs that require a lot of strength, which have nothing to do with climbs that are coming."

The first of those will be Tuesday's hors category finish at La Pierre-Saint Martin - a 15.3km climb at an average gradient of 7.4 percent, which is much more to Quintana's liking.

"It's a fairly consistent climb, very tough, in which the temperature will play an important role, and it's expected to be very hot," said Quintana.

And he added, smiling: "I always enjoy the big climbs."

Quintana lost a handful of seconds to Froome on the opening stage individual timetrial, the third stage finish on the Mur de Huy and Sunday's team timetrial.

But he gave up a minute and a half on the second stage in which crosswinds caused havoc as he was caught up behind a crash.

Yet he managed to avoid losing any more time on the potentially perilous cobbled fourth stage.

He says he is happy with his current position because he expected it to be even worse ahead of the mountains.

"I would have signed up for this gap (before the Tour started) because the first week wasn't easy," he said.

"Although it's true that the cobbles weren't as difficult as I thought.

"I got over them well with the help of the team who kept me calm."

Read more on:    tdf 2015  |  nairo quintana  |  cycling

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk



What do you enjoy most about the Tour de France?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.