Thomas De Gendt and Tim Wellens have set a new fastest time on the famous Vall d’Ebo climb during a training race.
Lotto-Soudal rider De Gendt and his compatriot smashed the previous fastest time on the climb, located just inland from Spain’s Mediterranean coast, topping the Strava leaderboard ahead of their team-mates.
The Belgians climbed the 7.88km-long, 5.6 per cent average gradient ascent in a time of 16-37, beating the previous best time of 17-02 set by local rider Dario Gadeo in August last year.
Their record was set during a Lotto-Soudal training ride, as the WorldTour squad are currently holding their winter camp in Costa Blanca.
As part of their training programme, the Lotto riders took on a 10-minute power test on the climb, topping the effort off with a full gas sprint to the summit.
Wellens and De Gendt rode to the line in a photo finish at the summit of Vall d’Ebo, which is a popular climb for the pros training in the area.
De Gendt revealed after the effort that the team had planned to do a 20-minute max-power effort, but that the climb wasn’t long enough.
Instead riders put in a huge 10-minute effort and continues racing to the top instead.
The power on display was also pretty phenomenal, with De Gendt pushing a huge 470 watts for the duration of the climb, with Wellens holding 463w with a heart-rate of 169 beats per minute.
De Gendt also said his power was 10-20w lower than if he had just been riding his 10-minute maximum power.
Both riders crested the climb with an average speed of 28.5km/h, while the next fastest rider was Andreas Klon, seven seconds behind his team-mates.
The effort was also part of a 139km, four-hour ride for the Lotto squad that took in 2,000 metres of elevation gain.