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Laurens ten Dam traded the short and damp days of the Netherlands for the dry and temperate conditions found along South America’s equator this week, to return to the Transcordilleras Rally Colombia.
In what he called a “sufferfest”, this mixed-terrain, self-supported adventure crosses the three imposing mountain ranges in Colombia, with a total of eight stages that add up to 852 kilometres and 21,000 metres of elevation gain.
Back for more with Ten Dam is Thomas Dekker, while 2022 champion Peter Stetina stayed in the US for gravel conquests closer to home.
Last year’s second edition saw Stetina ‘win’ three stages and the overall bragging rights, with Ten Dam tallying two stage victories and Dekker one. A pair of Colombian riders, Brayan Chaves Rubio and Antonio Donado Calle each won a stage and finished in the top five, though hours rather than minutes separated the challengers from the leaders.
“Together with Thomas Dekker, two Dutch friends decided they wanted to do it after last year’s sufferfest, and I told them they could suffer the same,” Ten Dam told Cyclingnews, a light laugh accompanying the reference to his friends, Willem Schellens and Frank Epskamp.
They will join in the race across…
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