BriefSpaniard Roberto Heras, of Kelme-Costa Blanca, prevailed in the 4th edition of the Gran Premio de Primavera de Amorebieta. He beat 3 other riders: German Udo Bolts (Telekom), Daniel Clavero Sebastion (Vitalicio Seguros) and his teammate Jose Luis Rubiera. The 4 riders attacked on the last ascent of the race, the Cat 3 Béjar some 3 kms from the finish. Heras took advantage of some great riding by the Asturian Rubiera to remain in the last position of the group of four and to kick at the right time. The 4 had escaped from a larger group of 12 riders who attacked on the first of three ascents of the Cat 2 alto de Montecalvo.
The 12 riders were part of two groups (7 and 5 riders respectively). The other riders were Santi Blanco and Serguei Smetanin (Vitalicio Seguros), Mikel Zarrabeitia (last year's winner) and David Etxebarria (ONCE), Aitor Osa and Jon Odriozola (Banesto), Axel Merckx (Polti) and Darío Frigo (Saeco).
Bolts and Rubiera escaped during the first descent of Autzagane. Smetanine went with them, but he could not stay with them during the last climb of Montecalvo. Clavero reached the break in this section and then attacked.
Jan Ulrich and Abraham Olano started the race, but the German retired at km 141, while the Banesto leader finished the race in 21st place at 3.09 from the winner.
Race distance - 196 kms:
1. Roberto Heras Hernandez (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca 4.51.58 2. Udo Bolts (Ger) Telekom-ARD s.t. 3. Daniel Clavero Sebastian (Spa) Vitalicio Seguros s.t. 4. Jose Luis Rubiera Vigil (Spa) Kelme-Costa Blanca s.t. 5. David Etxebarria (Spa) ONCE-Deutsche Bank 0.06 6. Darío Frigo (Ita) Saeco-Cannondale 0.06 7. Axel Merckx (Bel) Polti 0.06 8. Sergei Smetanine (Rus) Vitalicio Seguros 0.19 9. Jon Odriozola (Spa) Banesto 0.19 10. Mikel Zarrabeitia (Spa) ONCE-Deutsche Bank 0.19 11. Santi Blanco (Spa) Vitalicio Seguros 0.58 .. 21. Abraham Olano (Spa) Banesto 3.09 32. Marcelino García (Spa) ONCE-Deutsche Bank 3.40 Abandon: Jan Ullrich (Ger) Telekom-ADR after 141 km.