Hopkins produces spirited display in arduous fourth stage
Kaden Hopkins narrowly missed out another top-ten finish in a spirited display in the fourth stage of the Vuelta Independencia in the Dominican Republic today.
Having clinched a memorable victory in the previous stage yesterday, the Bermuda rider literally faced an uphill battle to repeat his heroics in the 129km ‘Queen Mountain stage’ from Santo Domingo to Rancho Arriba.
Despite not favouring steep climbs, Hopkins gave a good account of himself finishing eleventh, 5mins 53 secs adrift of winner Klesmas Yurgen Ramirez who claimed victory in 2:55:04.
“Around 5km into the stage there was a really steep, short climb and one of the local teams split the field,” said Hopkins. “I, along with my team-mate Julian Molina, were able to make the split of about 15 riders. The break managed to put 2:30 between us and the peloton before we hit the base of the climb.
“The Venezuelan team set a relentless pace right from the base of the climb and blew the break apart almost instantly. Once I was isolated I settled into my own rhythm until the finish.”
The 20-year-old dropped two places to tenth in the general classification and finds himself 9:20 adrift of standings leader Ramirez, who has an accumulative total time of 13:58:19.
Hopkins, who is representing the Mixed Puerto Rico/Bermuda team, also dropped a place in the Under-23 classification, but saw the deficit to new leader Omar Antonio Ruiz Peralta reduced to just 1:16 ahead of tomorrow’s 180km fifth stage.