With a brilliant ride up the final ascent of the 2013 Tour De France to Annecy Semnoz, Katusha Team’s Purito Rodríguez climbed up two places on General Classification to moveup to third place and will now finish on the podium. It was the third consecutive Grand Tour podium for Rodríguez on Canyon Bicycles, after finishing second at the 2012 Giro d’Italia and third in last year’s Vuelta a España.
On the final climb to Semnoz, it was Rodríguez who made the decisive attack to drop Alberto Contador and Roman Kreuziger from the front group. But after leading most of the way up the final climb, Rodríguez could not follow the key attack by Nairo Quintana, who won the stage, while Rodríguez was 2nd on his Canyon Aeroad 9.0 CF. More importantly for Purito, he gained more than two minutes on Contador and Kreuziger by the finish. With this result, Rodríguez one of the few riders who has stood ton the podium in all three of the Grand Tours.
After his great TT result earlier in the week on his Canyon Speedmax CF, Rodríguez shifted his focus to the climbing stages. On the final ascent to Annecy Semnoz, Rodríguez explained: ” I found that I was climbing better every day and I had a little bit more momentum. It was the final day for us all to do something and I wanted to try and fight for the stage. It was a hard day, but I fought and I finished second to a champion. I gave it everything.”
After the 100th Anniversary Tour De France wrapped up, Rodríguez declared “This was a huge day for me, for my family,” the Katusha rider said after Stage 21 in Paris. “I don’t know if I’ve seen them this happy about a podium, it was great. My wife and my children have supported me and this is important for them. They’ve missed me at home and I want to give them this. The Tour isn’t like anything else, it’s enormous and to finish on the podium is great. After the way the first part of the Tour went, I had to give it everything to finish well so I am very happy with my result.”
Rodriguez ended up 4th in the Mountains classification with 99 points, while Katusha Team rider Dani Moreno was 17th overall. Consistent Norwegian sprinter Alexander Kristoff was an excellent 5th in the Points classification. Katusha Team finished 6th on Team Classification. After the Tour De France, Purito will have some rest, then head to the Vuelta a España later this season to try and finally win a Grand Tour.