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VN Show: Purito’s greatest misses


We dedicated this week’s VeloNews Show to Joaquim “Purito” Rodriguez, who announced last week that he’s going to retire for real this time. (We’ll believe it when we see him standing in street clothes on the sidelines.)

Purito had an amazing career that was jam-packed with big victories. He won nine stages of the Vuelta, three stages of the Tour de France, and multiple one-day races. And he had probably the best nickname in the peloton (“Purito” means small cigar.)

But for every victory, Purito seemed to have two or three nail-biting losses. In fact, we will probably remember him more for his crushing defeats, such as his losses at the 2012 Giro d’Italia and 2013 UCI world championships. So as a send-off, we’ve analyzed all of Purito’s agonizing defeats, and assigned them a ranking (yep, by numbers of small cigars). It’s a fitting tribute to one of the most exciting racers of the past decade.