Stage 2: Mucuge to Rio de Contas, 145kms with 3372 meters of climbing, making this by far the toughest stage of the seven-day race. Attrition rate was exceptionally high, with 28 of the 100 teams that started the day failing to make it to the finish line due to mechanical, bio-mechanical, crash, injury or all four. Technical difficulty, 9.5 out of 10.
Stage Winners: Men: Luis Pinto and Alejandro Lopez (Team Spano-Luso); Mixed: Ivonne Kraft and Mateus Ferraz (Brasil Soul-RC Bikes); Women: Adriana Nascimento and Sabrina Gobbo (Ladies Brasil Soul-RC Bikes)
Out of the Race: Defending mixed duo champs Brian and Jenny Smith, who after winning the stage 1 prologue, saw things go horribly wrong on Monday when Brian came down with a bout of food poisoning and was forced to drop out of the race at the second aid station. “We’ve been racing together for so many years and that’s the first time I’ve ever seen him like that,” said Jenny Smith. “I think he threw up like 20 times. It was terrible.”
Stage 3: Rio de Contas Cross Country, 5 laps of a 7km circuit that starts and finishes on the rough, cobblestone streets of the Rio de Contas town square.
Brazilian Portuguese Words of the Day:
• Quente [Hot, as it was Monday, making for one long and painful day in the saddle]
• Sonolento [Sleepy, as is your intrepid reporter who spent the better part of 11.5 hours pedaling through the Brazilian hinterland.]