As he attacked in the final kilometre or so I carefully monitored his cadence. His legs were spinning quickly. Wasting no time, I instinctively clicked on Apple music, streamed La Bamba by Los Lobos, and had my suspicions confirmed. Yates’s legs were spinning at the exact RPM of that 1987 hit single.
While silky Polish climber Rafal Majka and Belgian Dylan Teuns eyed each other up for the race win Rodriguez spun up from behind, spun level, and then spun away off into the distance. For a guy who’s never won a bike race before, he sure seems to know how to win a bike race.
The easy option would be to describe Alejandro Valverde as a “Marmite” cyclist. But that would be playing right into the hands of the marketing people at Unilever, who have us evoking their product every time we encounter a thing that provokes a response in people, one way or another. Those clever bastards.