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3rd Vuelta a Espana 1941

 
   
 

By Barry Boyce, CyclingRevealed Historian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Return of the Vuelta

Rodriguez Wins 12 Stages!

The year of 1941 marked the return of the Vuelta a Espana after the brutal Spanish Civil War that devastated the country. This edition was organized by the central Delegation in collaboration with the athletic newspaper "Gol". World War 2 raged across northern Europe, but Spain rush to display a return to a normal way of life. The number of foreign riders was greatly reduced.

This edition of the Vuelta a Espana will go down in history as the first triumph achieved by a Spanish rider, as well as the emergence of one of the best sprinters in the history of Spanish cycling, Delio Rodriguez who had twelve stages wins.

The 32 starters, 4 from Switzerland , entered the 1941 Vuelta. They raced for 4,406 km over 21 stages.

Two major teams competed for the championship: the "blue and white" athletic Spanish Real Club (Julian Berrendero, Delio Rodriguez, Fermin Trueba) and the “blue and red” of F.C. Barcelona ( Vicente Carretero , Antonio Escuriet ). Julian Berrendero, a prisoner during the civil war, and Fermin Trueba delighted the cycling fans with a spectacular duel from start to finish.

Julian Berrendero, nicknamed "El Negro" (the black one), seizes the race leader's White Jersey on the first day. His teammate, sprinter Delio Rodriguez, assumed the race lead on stage 2 and held it until the mountains of Andalusia .

Rodriguez lost the jersey on stage 4 from Seville to Malaga when veteran Basque climber Fermin Trueba gained the race lead by 23 second over Berrendero and 11 minute 13 seconds over Rodriguez. Trueba kept the race lead for 12 stages. The question arose: After several tries, is this the year that Fermin Trueba will register his name to the list of winner of his National tour?

Teammates Trueba and Berrendero battle steadfastly though the mountain stages. On stage 14, from Bilbao to Santander , Trueba and Berrendero, regardless of their team uniform, deliver an epic battle. Trueba gained almost 9 minutes on Berrendero, who suffers 5 punctures, over the summit of the Col de Braguia. Berrendero feared he was losing the Vuelta and launched a frantic descent. He took back 6 minutes on Trueba and arrives at the finish only 2 minutes 9 seconds behind. His chances were saved… for the moment.

One of the major innovations in 1941 was the inclusion of the Individual Time Trial. This first Vuelta “race against the clock” was a 53 km course from Gijon to Oviedo on stage 16a. The winner of the stage was sprinter extraordinaire Delio Rodriguez. But Julian Berrendero achieved the significant results of the stage. His 3 rd place finish on the stage beat race leader Fermin Trueba by 4 minutes 41 seconds. Berrendero took over the race lead and cruised into Madrid with a 1 minute 7 second Vuelta victory.

Fermin Trueba´s victory in the penultimate climbing stage 14 to Santander , was not enough to give him the final victory. It did however give him the leadership in the Climbers Competition. He took a slim one-point win over Berrendero. Delio Rodriguez's 12 stage wins established the Spanish sprinter as a rider to reckon with in the future.

Stage and Distance Stage Winner Race Leader

Stage 1 Madrid-Salamanca, 210 km

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 2 Salamanca-Caceres, 214 km

Antonio Montes (Spa)

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Stage 3 Caceres-Sevilla, 270 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Stage 4 Sevilla-Malaga, 212 km

Antonio Escuriet (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 5 Malaga-Almeria, 220 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 6 Almeria-Murcia, 223 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 7 Murcia-Valencia, 248 km

Antonio Sancho (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 8 Valencia-Tarragona, 279 km

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 9 Tarragona-Barcelona, 112 km

Antonio Martin (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 10 Barcelona-Zaragoza, 294 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 11 Zaragoza-Logrono, 172 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 12 Logrono-San Sebastian, 213 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 13 San Sebastian-Bilbao, 160 km

Federico Ezquerra (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 14 Bilbao-Santander, 165 km

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 15 Santander-Gijon, 192 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

Stage 16a Gijon-Oviedo, 53 km ITT

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 16b Oviedo-Luarca, 101 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 17 Luarca-La Coruna, 219 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 18 La Coruna-Vigo, 219 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 19 Vigo-Verin, 178 km

Delio Rodriguez (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 20 Verin-Valladolid, 301 km

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

Stage 21 Valladolid-Madrid, 198 km

Vicente Carretero (Spa)

Julian Berrendero (Spa)

 

Mountain Prize

Fermin Trueba (Spa)

 

VaE June 12 - July 6, 1941
4,406 Km

1. Julian BERRENDERO (Spa) 168h45'26"

2. Fermin Trueba (Spa) +1'07"

3. Jose Jabardo (Spa) +6'32"

Starters: 32
Finishers: 16
Average Speed: 27.467 km/h

 

 

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