Advertisement
ex. Game, Music, Video, Photography

'Cycling in Vietnam made me fat'

In the lead up to this year's VTV Cup, Spanish cyclist Javier Sardá Pérez has spoken about living and racing in Vietnam.

Ngày đăng: 21 tháng 3, 2021
Cập nhật: 5 tháng 10, 2021
Lượt xem: 25352530
Nguồn: vnexpress

Advertisement
In the lead up to this year's VTV Cup, Spanish cyclist Javier Sardá Pérez has spoken about living and racing in Vietnam.

In the lead up to this year's VTV Cup, Spanish cyclist Javier Sardá Pérez has spoken about living and racing in Vietnam.

Before one of Vietnam’s biggest bike races got underway in Hanoi on Sunday, a favorite for the overall title, Pérez of Team VUS, spoke to VnExpress International about his preparations, and how he became a member of the Vietnamese cycling peloton.

The HTV Cup 2019 champion also weighed in on the impact of the Vietnamese diet, the pursuit of KOM on wealthy businessmen in Hanoi and what he describes as his most difficult climb. Vietnam.

Months before the start of the annual VTV Ton Hoa Sen Cup*, which began with the criterion of 30 rounds around Hoan Kiem Lake, Pérez signed a local contract preparing alone, away from the hustle and bustle of Hanoi. .

In June and July this year, when the rainy season in Vietnam was halted, Pérez took himself to his hometown of Cantabria, in the mountains of northern Spain.

Cantabria is synonymous with some of the most iconic mountaintop finishes of Vuelta a España, the three-week UCI major tournament that has been held in Spain since 1935.

"Here I have everything I need as a cyclist," the 31-year-old said.“There are all kinds of terrain."

Arrival

Having arrived in Vietnam at the back end of two seasons of cycling in Japan, Pérez’s first experience of the sport here was emblematic of a career choice that goes against the odds.

Invited by BikeLife Dong Nai to ride a bike at the 2017 VTV Cup, now as a competitor, he performed very well, finishing second and winning the 12th stage 126 km from Nha Trang to Da Lat.However, after leaving to complete the season in Japan, what surprised him was that he did not receive a call from the team.

"I still don't know why they didn't call me back then," he said with a laugh."But I guess this is cycling, and you can only do so much of it."

Javier Sardá Pérez competes in Japan in 2016.Shizu Furusaka's photo.

Javier Sardá Pérez competes in Japan in 2016.Shizu Furusaka's photo.

In hindsight it was a situation that mirrored the frustration he had felt in Europe, where he says contacts, sponsors and politics are often as important as good legs and good results.

Despite a promising career as a young rider, as he specialized in winning a number of notable one-day races, like many others, he found opportunity in My hometown is hard to come by.

To highlight the narrow margin in relation to his sport, in 2015, Pérez finished 11 seconds (and 30 places) behind current track world champion, Alejandro Valverde, at the championship Spain country.

It was not enough to attract the interest of a quality team, and so Pérez began weighing his options abroad.After time in Argentina and then Bolivia, in 2016 he signed with a Japanese team, Victoire Hiroshima.

"In Europe it is very difficult to find a strong team without good connections.If you do not have much financial support, you cannot participate.In Asia, if you have good results, you will be more appreciated because the riders here want to learn from your experience, so they prefer foreigners."

Changing teams

With his time in Japan at an end, Pérez moved on quickly from the BikeLife disappointment, signing a contract for the 2018 season with a team from southern Vietnam's An Giang Province, Gao Hat Ngoc Troi AG.

Here, his personal results in the most important races have not gone his way, which he says has been exacerbated by feeling alone.

"When I race, I feel good, but when my team moves to Long Xuyen [capital of An Giang], I feel very alone.I couldn't talk to anyone because no one could speak English, and this was a big factor in their leaving."

Now, having signed for the Ho Chi Minh City-based VUS team in September last year, Pérez "feels good" and wants to stay.This is further reinforced by his success in the most prestigious event in the country, the Ho Chi Minh City Television Cup, which he won in April.

"This is the most important race for all Vietnamese teams.

"It has the longest history and the highest prestige."

Javier Sardá Pérez in the leaders jersey at the 2019 HTV Cup.Photo courtesy of Javier Sardá Pérez.

Javier Sardá Pérez in the leader's jersey at the 2019 HTV Cup.Photo courtesy of Javier Sardá Pérez.

The HTV Cup is a multi-stage race that has been run in Vietnam in one form or another since 1989, and generally covers the length and breadth of the country.In 2018 it included 30 stages of soul destruction, but sanity prevailed this year as it went back to 16.

"I've been working to win that race for a long time, and I'm really happy to have won it.

"It was great to work with my team because they took care of me at every stage.For example, I had difficult days in Hue, when I woke up sick and suffered a lot."

Getting fat

The HTV Cup hasn’t been the Spaniard’s only significant win.Late last year, not long after joining VUS, Pérez made the first 12-stage Indochina Tour to Cambodia and Laos.That's not a bad result considering his early struggles with weight, an essential metric in any cyclist's life.

“I struggled with my diet when I first came to Vietnam.

"Something about rice and some fried food has put me on three kilos, which is a huge amount for me.Yes, cycling in Vietnam makes me fat.

"I went from 62 kg when I reached 65 kg a few months later.When I came back to Spain I started a diet and now I'm 61.5 kg, which means when I go hiking, I feel good."

Fat-shaming aside, it’s all part of the process of adaption, he says, which includes dealing with the weather in Vietnam and taking advantage of unusual opportunities whenever they present themselves.

Earlier this year, before returning to Spain for the summer, Pérez couldn't turn down the chance to make a few dollars by climbing a remarkable hill outside Hanoi in Ba Vi National Park.An unnamed businessman offered him 10 million dong ($430) to break the time record climbing it, and he duly did so.

"A rich man in Hanoi challenged me to go to Ba Vi for the best time", he laughed.

“[He] offered me 10 million dong if I could do it. So now I have the KOM (King of the Mountain) for Ba Vi on Strava!"

The ‘toughest climb in Vietnam’

Javier Sardá Pérez recces the course of the 2019 Coupe de Hue. Photo courtesy of Javier Sardá Pérez.

Javier Sardá Pérez recces the course of the 2019 Coupe de Hue Gran Fondo.Photo courtesy of Coupe de Hue Gran Fondo.

On the topic of opportunities, Pérez will get another in Hue later this month.

On September 22, he'll likely start his favorite comeback in the second edition of the Coupe de Hue Gran Fondo.This is a 150km amateur race that starts and ends outside the Hue Citadel and includes just over 1,800 meters of climbing.

Already officially recognized by the UCI and open to anyone with a decent road bike, the weekend will offer a chance for riders like Pérez to swap stories with the 2009 world champion, Cadel Evans, who will be there as a guest of the event’s main sponsor.

It won't just be a fun run for the winners, though: On day one, a 15-kilometer downhill time trial awaits, climbing what Pérez describes as "climbing" hardest mountain in Vietnam", Bach Ma Mountain.

"But how difficult it is depends on the driver," he said.

Normally closed to the public, the People's Committee of Thua Thien-Hue province has allowed the race organizers to enter the national park for the day.

With an average slope of 8.3 percent, peaking at 15 percent in some sections, the steep climb is 1,200 meters at just over 15 kilometers.For those who want to go fast, the Spaniard recommends the right combination of gears.

He took the course again in May.“This is a very difficult climb, but when you get to the top, there are some very beautiful views of Hue and Da Nang.

“With good mind and physical strength, anyone can do it."

Broadly speaking, that is exactly the kind of philosophy that Pérez has applied to his gallivanting cycling career.Inspired at the age of 8 by his grandfather, who was also a cyclist in Spain, nearly 25 years later Pérez sees no reason to give up.

“Cycling is freedom for me,” he said before returning from his training tour in the highlands of Cantabria.

"When I get to the point where I can't get out of bed to work anymore, or if I start not enjoying it, I stop.Valverde is a world champion, and he's 39 years old, so I think I can still ride for a long time."

*The 2019 VTV Cup covers 1,045 kilometers over eight stages and is contested by 82 riders from six local teams and six others from Thailand, Korea, the Philippines, Australia, the Netherlands and France.


Từ vựng liên quan

Advertisement

Tin tức liên quan

 Brokers lead Vietnamese workers into exile in foreign lands
perspectives 01/04/2021

Brokers lead Vietnamese workers into exile in foreign lands

perspectives | 177202499

Many workers seek jobs abroad, but high brokerage and other fees are demanded of them, often illegally.

Advertisement
Highlights of Reuters interview with Trump
world 18/09/2021

Highlights of Reuters interview with Trump

world | 325002474

Here are some of the highlights of the Reuters interview with U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday.

 Brokerages see shifts in Q2 market share
business 17/03/2021

Brokerages see shifts in Q2 market share

economy | 29124743

While Saigon Securities Inc. (SSI) has kept its leading position in the market, HSC has lost its runner-up position to VCSC.

Advertisement
 Brokerage sells 3.83 million shares mortgaged by Vietnamese tycoon
business 07/05/2021

Brokerage sells 3.83 million shares mortgaged by Vietnamese tycoon

companies | 200752494

Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) sold 3.83 million shares of Hoang Anh Gia Lai JSC mortgaged by Doan Nguyen Duc, its chairman, to recover its loan last Friday.

 Broken internet cable disrupts online learning, meetings
news 08/09/2021

Broken internet cable disrupts online learning, meetings

news | 254032478

A problem has occurred along the Asia Africa Europe (AAE-1) cable, affecting internet services in Vietnam at a time Covid-19 restrictions force many to study and work from home.

Advertisement
 Brittle-boned man takes a crack at success
life 21/03/2021

Brittle-boned man takes a crack at success

trend | 31622508

From breaking bones by merely waving his hands to becoming an online game streamer, Hanoian Nguyen Minh Khang has come a long way.

 Briton jailed for robbing Saigon convenience store
news 20/03/2021

Briton jailed for robbing Saigon convenience store

news | 14552498

A Ho Chi Minh City court on Wednesday sentenced a British man to five years in jail for robbing VND2.6 million ($111) from a convenience store earlier this year.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Chủ đề liên quan

Advertisement
Advertisement

Tin được xem nhiều nhất

 Vietnam among hardest hit by cryptomining attacks: security bulletin
news 22/03/2021

Vietnam among hardest hit by cryptomining attacks: security bulletin

news | 38152966

Vietnam is among nations hardest hit by cryptomining attacks this year, says Moscow-based multinational cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab.

Advertisement
 Vietnam lifts rice export ban
business 17/03/2021

Vietnam lifts rice export ban

economy | 325081

Vietnam has lifted its ban on rice exports with immediate effect, allowing 400,000 tonnes to be shipped this month.

 Online ethnic minority comedies no laughing matter
life 18/03/2021

Online ethnic minority comedies no laughing matter

trend | 95925048

Many Vietnamese YouTube channels have produced comedy videos portraying ethnic minority life through distorted facts and smutty jokes, causing community backlash.

Advertisement
 Hanoi relives historic, liberating moment
news 17/03/2021

Hanoi relives historic, liberating moment

news | 80625031

An exhibition in Hanoi goes back 64 years, when the French troops officially withdrew from Vietnam.

 A winsome foursome presents a ‘Happy Vietnam’
news 17/03/2021

A winsome foursome presents a ‘Happy Vietnam’

news | 1225005

Viet, Nam, Hanh and Phuc whose first names combine to mean "Happy Vietnam" are healthy quadruplets growing in the southern province of Dong Thap.

Advertisement
 Coteccons begins new chapter, hopefully, after resolving feud with shareholders
business 17/03/2021

Coteccons begins new chapter, hopefully, after resolving feud with shareholders

companies | 90325005

Coteccons will replace two board members with nominees of two major shareholders with whom the management has had a running battle since 2017.

 Lo Lo Chai: where time stands still
travel 20/03/2021

Lo Lo Chai: where time stands still

travel | 16762656

Lo Lo Chai is a village in the northern province of Ha Giang that has no modern construction.

Advertisement
 Four teen boys probed for gang rape of drunk girl
news 21/03/2021

Four teen boys probed for gang rape of drunk girl

news | 35372654

Four teenage boys in northern Vinh Phuc Province are being investigated for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl.

 Five Vietnamese men caught for smuggling Chinese
news 18/03/2021

Five Vietnamese men caught for smuggling Chinese

news | 96724881

Three men in southern Tay Ninh Province and two in northern Lao Cai Province have been arrested for helping Chinese nationals illegally enter Vietnam.

Advertisement
 Golden rice season in northern Vietnam village Nam Hong
travel 17/03/2021

Golden rice season in northern Vietnam village Nam Hong

places | 524876

When fall begins towards the end of September and start of October, Nam Hong Village in Ha Giang Province radiates the amber hue of autumn.

Advertisement

Link Tài Trợ - Sponsored Links

Công Thức Vật Lý
Advertisement
Loading…