• Giro d'Italia Juanpe López makes history and dresses in pink on Etna

At the Kometa concentration, in Oliva (Valencia), on the first weekend of February 2019, the reporter sneaks into training and asks who is the rider from the new litter of

Alberto Contador

's youth team that can provide more game.

"The most interesting is Juanpe, he looks like Alberto," emphasizes

Juanfran de la Cruz

, press officer.

The new pink

jersey

of the Giro d'Italia,

Juan Pedro López

(Lebrija, 1997), showed remarkable conditions since his beginnings in cycling.

Pinteño's squad signed him up when he was 17 years old and he was in his school until he was 23. His teachers

From him Díaz Justo

,

Jesús Hernández

,

García Casas

,

José Luis de Santos

and

Carlos Barredo

always valued him for his climbing skills and charisma.

«Juanpe never goes unnoticed.

He is a very open, happy, joking and close person.

He always makes a group », affirms

Fran Contador

, the brother of the champion, promoter of the launch platform for runners created in Pinto, who on Monday witnessed Juanpe's exhibition at the same finish line on Etna.

And it is that the new jewel of the Contador factory is as funny as

Joaquín

, the striker of his beloved Betis.

He is passionate about soccer and when he was a kid he dreamed of being an idol of the Verdiblanco club.

Juanpe comes from a humble family, forced to make many sacrifices for him to make his way in cycling.

Since adolescence he began to fly alone.

Yesterday he remembered his people and he was moved on the podium of the

Corsa Rosa

: “I am very happy.

I need to enjoy this moment and as many as I can with this jersey", said the Sevillian, who in the last kilometers of the day was overtaken by the German

Lennard Känma

, who snatched the stage win from him, but that did not prevent him from emulating his idol.

Juanpe, seven years later, took over from Alberto Contador of the last leading Spanish Giro d'Italia.

López's emergence surprised those responsible for his team, the Trek, who were content with some partial triumph of

Mollema

,

Ciccone

or

Cataldo

.

An expert trio who will now work for a 24-year-old boy who is not overwhelmed by responsibility.

“He is no longer in our team, but I am very happy for him.

He is very good and those of us who know him knew that

it was only a matter of time

before he showed what he is worth », says Fran Contador in a telephone conversation after the Etna base.

López stands out for his easy pedaling when the road gets steep.

A safe value in the mountains, that's why the

Trek did not hesitate to hire it in 2020

.

So, Kometa was a kind of mother team of the formation sponsored by the American bicycle factory.

In that winter of 2019, Juanpe led a squad that included a boy, three years younger, who already stood out for his encouragement:

Carlos Rodríguez

, who now plays for Ineos and who is, along with

Juan Ayuso

, the banner of the new Spanish cycling.

Diego Pablo Sevilla

,

Alejandro Ropero and the

García Pierna

brothers

were also there

.

Boys who struggled to jump into the professional category and follow in the footsteps of

Enric Mas

,

Álvaro Cuadros

,

Fernando Barceló

or

Matteo Moschetti , doctorate students from the Contador academy, which

Ivan Basso

soon joined as a partner

.

Fran is proud of cultivated land.

And it is that on Monday the Italian

Stefano Oldani

was also the protagonist , who was on the run until the last section of the day, when he was hunted by Juanpe López, who was part of that valuable promotion of Oliva that now shines in this attractive Giro.

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