Ineos Grenadiers reveal Richard Carapaz's crazy altitude training

The 2019 Giro d'Italia winner took on his local volcano for his latest giant altitude ride

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Richard Carapaz has been taking altitude training to new heights back in his home country of Ecuador, Ineos Grenadiers have revealed.

The 27-year-old has been climbing on Volcán Cotopaxi, which is just south of the capital city of Quito in the Andes.

Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers) has been spending his off-season in Ecuador, training with team-mate and Giro d'Italia stage winner Jhonatan Narváez as they both build towards their goals.

Narváez has joined his other team-mates in Europe to race the Tour des Alpes Maritimes et du Var on Friday with Geraint Thomas, Tao Geoghegan Hart and Tom Pidcock, leaving Carapaz to train solo.

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Ineos Grenadiers revealed the heights of his training ride on Monday (February 15) over their social media platforms, comparing it to various other well known mountains Alpe d'Huez, Passo dello Stelvio and Everest as well as some amazing pictures taken of the climb.

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At 4,800 metres above sea level, Carapaz cycled up to almost the exact same altitude as Mont Blanc, the tallest mountain in Europe.

The 2019 Giro winner has been using his home country as ideal preparation for his main objectives this season.

Ecuador lies largely on the Andes mountain range, so he is constantly at high altitudes, often double the height of some of the Alpine passes that he will be taking on in Europe at races such as the Tour de France.

The gains from altitude training can be immense for some riders, giving them higher amounts of red blood cells meaning you get a similar effect to EPO but naturally and completely legally, which ups your endurance and performance and the longer you stay at altitude the longer the effects lasts.

Carapaz's race schedule is set to start at the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya then the Tour of the Basque Country before a full Ardennes Classics campaign as he aims for a possible Liège-Bastogne-Liège win.

He is then down to race at the Critérium du Dauphiné as his main build up for his focus on the Tour de France, which he made his debut at last year, wearing the mountains jersey for several stages as well as a second place on a stage behind team mate, Michał Kwiatkowski.

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.