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Gallery: Racers face a challenging stage 3 at La Ruta

The 500 racers at La Ruta de los Conquistadores faced a 79km stage 2 from near San Jose to Turrialba over the Irazú Volcano and past the Turrialba Volcano in Costa Rica on Friday. 

From San Jose, the riders climbed high above the valleys below, rising above the clouds.  A long pavement climb took them up toward the volcanos and a treacherous descent over a wet, rocky road challenged riders on the downhill.

The attached photos capture day two's action at the 20th anniversary La Ruta.  The race finishes up on Saturday on the beach of the Carribbean Sea.

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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews.  She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.