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Summary

By winning the 2019 Tour de France, Egan Bernal became the race's youngest champion in 110 years and the first from the South American nation of Colombia. His victory brought decades of national yearning to fruition and capped the achievements of a golden generation of Colombian cyclists.

For, in the years before Egan's victory, Nairo Quintana won the Tours of Italy and Spain, even coming within 72 seconds of winning the Tour. Rigoberto Urán, Esteban Chaves, Miguel Ángel López and Fernando Gaviria took stage wins, donned leaders' jerseys and made final podiums at cycling's greatest events. They, and other world-class Colombian talents, made their nation a cycling superpower. 

Colombia has long been the only developing nation not just competing but contending at cycling's highest level. Yet its cycling sons are not the products of a rigorous sports system that spots them in childhood and nurtures them through the ranks to the pinnacle of globalised sport. They come from harder backgrounds that surprise, shock - even, at times, enchant.   

And their attainments are not just sporting. The visibility they have secured their homeland has helped open it to international tourism and trade. After decades of violence, corruption and civil unrest, a new Colombia, revitalised by economic regeneration, a national peace process and the successes of its cyclists, has achieved normalisation in the eyes of the international community.

So rapid has this national transformation been that it has taken place within the lifetimes of these remarkable young sportsmen. Colombia Es Pasión! How a New Generation of Cyclists Changed a Nation explores the lives and dreams of each of Colombia's leading cyclists. Theirs are inspiring stories of overcoming poverty and violence, sickness and corruption - of the emergence of the indigenous to global sporting glory. It portrays the unique sporting microcosm that lies behind Colombia's world-beating riders and how their sporting achievements have spurred a nation to peace, reform and prosperity.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio on our Desktop Site.

©2020 Matt Rendell (P)2020 Orion Publishing Group

What listeners say about Colombia Es Pasion!

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Great

Excellent analysis of the sport and the nation. highly recommended to anyone interested in the sport or Latin America

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So much passion

I loved this book. I listened to it during the 1st week of 2020 TdF and started noticing Colombians more. And not just the ones I root for like Dani Martinez.
The only downside of the book for me was lack of flow. I was confused whether chapters were organised by rider or time or team... but this was a small price to pay for all that knowledge. And Matt's voice translates really well from the silver screen to the audio book.
Over all, a must have book!

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A triumph.

Although not a cycling fan I got this title due to my interest in Colombia, and especially the experiences of its many indigenous groups.

This is a compelling book that I'm sure cycling enthusiasts will love. Rendell's prose is superb as is his research. I have been travelling in Colombia for over 10 years yet found this book engaging and informative in its quest to locate Colombian cyclists in their social, economic and cultural contexts alongside that of their sport.

Highly recommended.

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  • PatG
  • 14-08-20

Excellent!

We listened to the Audible version and found the book well narrated, exciting and very well researched. The interviews were priceless and tell the harrowing history and the stoicism of the Colombian people. Colombian riders face the darkest and seemingly insurmountable obstacles yet emerge on the other side shining with class and grace. Viva la 🇨🇴 !!!!