1998 Tour of Spain Leader's trophy - Abraham Olano
by Matthias Van Milders on 18 June 2021
Do not be taken in by the advertising: this is not the Amstel Gold Race trophy. Abraham Olano was awarded the trophy for his 1998 Vuelta win. This was when the world of cycling was going through a rough patch. The Festina affair left the peloton badly shaken and created a strange atmosphere for the Tour de France. There is another reason why Abraham Olano has bad memories of the 1998 Tour de France. In the tenth stage he was hit by a motorbike, and did not return to the race the following day. He then pulled out all the stops in his own country's Tour. He moved into the lead after winning the first time trial. Holding sway in the mountains was out of the question, but no one was really able to make Olano wobble on his pedestal. He was flanked on the podium by his compatriots Escartín and Jiménez. A certain Lance Armstrong came fourth.