Fuente taking a shower with his bike...
Who said that a climber can't have
a sense of humour?
The seventies were surely occupied by the reign of the Cannibal. He won countless of races, but what made it more exciting was his rivals. He had to have them to win. Gimondi, De Vlaeminck, Maertens & Ocana were some of those men. But one man that made him hurt in the mountains was the great Spanish grimpeur, José-Manuel Fuente.
Merckxs on Fuente (Maglia Rosa)...
"Fuente was undoubtedly the most astonishing climber I ever met.
He was capable of actually sprinting on the steepest slopes
and then maintaining a high rhythm for a long time.
He gave me serious problems in the 1972 Giro!"
Like many of Merckx's adversaries, he had the ability to win more races than he did. The Merckx's era was in place and many talented riders' were just fighting for the crumbs of second place. Fuente was cut from the same mode as Ocana. An excellent climber capable of winning grand tours!
"The great revelation."
Next: "A special post."