Video: Irish club rider wins gruelling race to Gran Canaria highest point

Posted on: December 8th, 2018

At the end of the climbing on Gran Canaria, Waterford Racing Club’s Constantin Bartels was first man home. From Germany, Bartels has been living and racing in Ireland for years, progressing up the categories.


Waterford Racing Club rider Constantin Bartels has won a gruelling climbers’ race in Gran Canaria.

The event was just 24km in length. But it was run up Pico de las Nieves, the summit of which is the highest point on the island.

Part of the La Cicloturista Gran Canaria Bike Week, the race up the climb is regarded as the queen stage of the week-long festival.

A field of 90 riders took to the start line, with almost 30 abandoning as gradients of up to 23 per cent in places took their toll.

However, Bartels maintained his place as the group was whittled down. And when two Spanish riders pulled clear, only Waterford Racing’s Bartels was able to get back to them.

When Bartels, a German who has lived in Ireland and raced here for many years, caught José Ramón Álvarez and Antonio Enrique Bolaños it set up a three-way battle for victory.

Bartels covered some of the late attacks, with Álvarez the main protagonist. However, after Bartels had closed down a number of efforts of his rivals, Bolaños fell back with the finish in sight.

And in the final push to the line Constantin Bartels proved stronger than Álvarez to beat him to victory by two seconds. Bolaños rounded out the podium another 13 seconds back.

It was an impressive effort from Bartels who has been living on Gran Canaria in recent months; taking a break from the Irish winter.

Bartels began riding as an A4 in Ireland and at that level won the Des Hanlon Memorial as he gained experience of the Irish ece

He has since moved up the rankings and now rides as an A1 and has competed in the Rás Tailteann twice.