Emotional Triumph: Pello Bilbao’s Stage Win in the Tour de France Pays Tribute to Gino Mäder’s Tragic Passing: Pello Bilbao, a cyclist from Bahrain Victorious in Tour de France, experienced a profoundly emotional triumph in a stage of the Tour de France on Tuesday. He dedicated his victory in Tour de France to his former teammate Gino Mäder, who tragically lost his life in a crash last month.
Bilbao, who was among the cyclists who withdrew from the Tour de Suisse following the accident, expressed the challenge of focusing on cycling in the aftermath of the tragic incident. He shared that the team and sports directors were deeply affected by the loss when they left the race in Switzerland. Bilbao mentioned that although psychological support was offered, finding solace in his family, particularly his daughter Martina, brought him some peace. The purity of children helped him temporarily set aside the difficult emotions they were all grappling with and aided in his recovery on the bike.
The passing of Gino Mäder, a young cyclist of only 26 years, happened as a result of a crash during the fifth stage of the Tour de Suisse. He fell into a ravine after a high-speed collision and was discovered motionless in the water. Despite resuscitation efforts and being rushed to the hospital, his injuries were severe, and he tragically succumbed to them.
Driven by his friendship with Gino Mäder, Bilbao was determined to secure a stage victory for his team in this year’s Tour de France. Seizing his opportunity in the 10th stage, Bilbao carefully selected the appropriate breakaway group and timed his sprint finish perfectly. His triumph also marked Spain’s first stage win since 2018.
Expressing his emotions after the race, Bilbao revealed that winning for Gino required waiting for the perfect moment. Crossing the finish line was an overwhelming experience for him, evoking an outpouring of emotions. Despite usually maintaining composure, he confessed to feeling distracted on that day due to the significance of the victory.
Although Danish rider Jonas Vingegaard maintained the overall lead, Bilbao’s stage win propelled him to fifth place. Following the race, Bilbao’s team shared a photo on social media depicting him on the podium, pointing towards the sky as a tribute to Gino, accompanied by the caption, “For you, Gino!”
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