EFE · Gravel · 03/13/2023
Pascual Momparler, national cycling coach, believes that the ex-runner Alejandro Valverde, World Champion on route in 2018, “will be one of those who are fond of gravel cycling and in this mode will surprise more than one”.
Momparler, a fan of bikes adapted to all types of terrain for years, has experienced the unstoppable growth of this modality.
“I raced cyclocross when I was younger. I remember going from my house to the circuit every day and coming back. I had a lot of fun. I used to ride this type of bike looking for greens when the gravel didn’t exist yet. The States Together, they bought my first bike, it will be about 7-8 years. Since then, I ride it whenever I can because I think it’s a lot of fun,” says Momparler.
The Spanish technician considered that the gravel, which already organizes races in Spain such as the Mussara Hunting Dogs, is not just a fad, but a modality called to endure over time.
“Gravel is here to stay. I think it will drive away this road cycling and this mountain biking that is practiced on roads. These people will stay on gravel. Some because they use a bike that is not suitable for the use that they they are giving and others because they will realize that with a gravel bike they can do the same, on quieter roads and avoiding the cars a bit. All this is already coming,” he explained in statements to the organization of this test.
VALVERDE RIDING ON GRAVEL AND SURPRISING
Pascual Momparler believes that Alejandro Valverde, recently retired as a road professional at the age of 42, will have a preferred place on the gravel.
“I think that Valverde will be one of those who ride on gravel and will surprise more than one. He enjoyed it a lot in the Strade Bianche, last year he wanted to race in Jan. I know he has it in his head” , precise
Of the riders who came to the Wollongong Road World Championships, he said, “Carlos Verona I was surprised by his technique. I know he had his gravel bike to unload, but I could see he was very level.”
Last year saw the first world gravel championship organized by the UCI, a first step that did not particularly surprise the selector.
“The European cyclocross commission, to which I belong, was talking about the possibility of this world championship for four or five years. In places like Italy, Belgium or the north of France, the gravel was sticking very hard. So that it wasn’t a big surprise either. What surprised me was that so many Spanish runners came.”
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