The Ineos Grenadiers riders refused to bow out quietly on the final day at the Giro d'Italia despite Richard Carapaz finishing second to Jai Hindley (Bora-Hansgrohe), with 20-year-old Ben Tulett finishing an impressive fifth in the Verona time trial.
Carapaz is Ineos Grenadiers’ current Grand Tour leader but Tulett is part of the team’s next-gen of riders and represents the future.
He is younger than Ethan Hayter, Tom Pidcock, Luke Plapp, Magnus Sheffield, Ben Turner, Kim Heiduk and Carlos Rodriguez, but is the first to ride and complete the Giro d’Italia. He raced with Alpecin-Fenix in 2020 and 2021 but Ineos Grenadiers team manager Rod Ellingworth made sure he was part of the British team for the next stage in his career.
With Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) and Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) switching so successfully from cyclo-cross to road racing, Ellingworth rightly sensed the two-time junior cyclo-cross world champion was a special talent, who deserved to be fast-tracked with a place in the Giro d’Italia so he could quickly test his Grand Tour limits.
Before starting the Giro d’Italia in Budapest on May 6, Tulett’s longest race had been the seven-day 2021 Tour de Pologne, where he finished ninth overall.
“I’ve enjoyed this final week of mountains, it’s been really tough but I’ve enjoyed it,” he said with youthful enthusiasm.
“Doing a Grand Tour is like a year’s racing in one race. It’s crazy and very different to any other race. Of course, 21 days of racing takes its toll but I’ve enjoyed it.”
Tulett showed his Grand Tour credentials with a good final week, helping Carapaz in the mountains and then finished strong all the way to the finish in Verona.
"I went out with the intention of giving my all, emptying the tank. It was a hard time trial course with the climb and the technical downhill but I enjoyed it."
Tulett enjoyed a front seat for a master class in Grand Tour racing by racing with Carapaz.
“It’s been amazing to watch him, he’s so professional, on and off the bike. He’s been an inspiration, it’s been incredible to be here,” Tulett enthused, the initial disappointment of defeat, as with Carapaz, replaced with pride and satisfaction for second place overall in Verona.
“We can’t be disappointed with our effort. It’s been a fantastic team effort. I’m tired now and need a break but I hope to start another Grand Tour soon.”
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month*
Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
after your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59
Join now for unlimited access
Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Stephen is the most experienced member of the Cyclingnews team, having reported on professional cycling since 1994. He has held the position of European editor since 2012 and previously worked for Reuters, Shift Active Media, and Cycling Weekly, among other publications.