Ethan Hayter hitting his stride at Volta ao Algarve

FARO PORTUGAL FEBRUARY 18 Ethan Hayter of United Kingdom and Team INEOS Grenadiers competes during the 48th Volta Ao Algarve 2022 Stage 3 a 2114km stage from Almodvar to Faro VAlgarve2022 on February 18 2022 in Faro Portugal Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images
Ethan Hayter (Ineos Grenadiers) at the Volta ao Algarve (Image credit: Getty Images)

Ethan Hayter knew the Alto da Fóia better than most, having won there in last May’s pandemic-delayed Volta ao Algarve, but the circumstances were rather different on his second visit to the mountaintop on Thursday. The pool of talent on show was a little deeper as the race returned to its traditional February slot, while Hayter’s own condition was altogether less certain after COVID-19 interrupted the final part of his preparations for the new season.

 As the climb drew on and the front group grew more sparse, however, Hayter’s confidence grew. Dusk had all but fallen as they reached the mountaintop, but the Briton had hopes of conjuring up the same turn of speed that carried him to victory beneath golden sunshine last year. As the finish line approached, Ineos Grenadiers’ focus switched from protecting Daniel Martinez to teeing up Hayter.

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.