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Atapuma leads Colombia in USA Pro Challenge

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Darwin Atapuma (Colombia) happy with his stage win in Poland

Darwin Atapuma (Colombia) happy with his stage win in Poland (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Darwin Atapuma (Colombia)

Darwin Atapuma (Colombia) (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Darwin Atapuma (Colombia) nabs the team's first win of 2013

Darwin Atapuma (Colombia) nabs the team's first win of 2013 (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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The Colombia team at the start.

The Colombia team at the start. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Team Colombia is sending its climbers to tackle the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. Darwin Atapuma will lead the South American team in the USA Pro Challenge next week (August 19-25).

Atapuma  recently brought in the team's first WorldTour victory, and his first win of the season, by winning the sixth stage of the Tour of Poland, a monstrous stage which included ten category one climbs. He will be supported by fellow climbers Fabio Duarte, Robinson Chalapud and Jarlinson Pantano. Edwin Avila will be there for the sprint stages, and Alexis Camacho and Juan Pabo Sanchez will support the team.

“We are travelling to Colorado with a strong and motivated team, looking to stretch our good momentum, said sports director Oscar Pellicioli. “Atapuma and Chalapud provided some strong performances, and Avila really impressed me at the Vuelta a Burgos, holding his own even on climbs. We will try to be on the front line through the whole week, and there’s the right terrain to do that.”

The race starts in the ski resort of Aspen and finishes six stages later with a circuit race in Denver. In between, the climbing includes the Independence Pass, the highest point of any cycling race at 12000 feet. 2012 winner Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Sharp) will be, in one of the final races of his professional career. Peter Sagan leads the Cannondale team and Tour de France winner Chris Froome makes his return to serious racing with Team Sky.  

Team Colombia for the USA Pro Challenge: Darwin Atapuma, Edwin Avila, Alexis Camacho, Robinson Chalapud, Fabio Duarte, Jarlinson Pantano, and Juan Pablo Suarez