Ecuador’s Olympic mess for which the government has intervened: Richard Carapaz (gold) or Jhonatan Narváez to Paris 2024
Juan José Saldaña
May 20, 2024

The Ecuadorian Cycling Federation (FEC) has a dilemma to solve. After having placed 23rd in the ranking of countries of the International Cycling Union (UCI), they got a place for road cycling at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. And determining who will occupy it is not easy: Richard Carapaz or Jhonatan Narváez, two big names for a single space.

According to the parameters established by the FEC, the rider will be chosen based on, for example, the required points in the UCI Individual World Ranking, the results of one-day tests in the UCI ranking and the coach’s technical analysis, which point will be evaluated by the board.

These parameters are discussed by Carapaz, who stated that the FEC extended the deadlines established by the UCI for counting points, which leaves the Ecuadorian legend at a disadvantage against Jhonatan Narváez in the fight for the available place. “I earned the place on the road (…) Ecuador has only one place for the Olympic Games and it was achieved by the number of points that I contributed. Almost 50%”, expressed ‘La Locomotora de Carchi’.

Carapaz is the current champion of the Olympic Games after achieving glory in Tokyo 2020. The champion of the 2019 Giro d’Italia, who has stood on the podiums of all the Grand Tours, wants to revalidate his gold in Paris 2024.


The cyclist’s statements did not go down well with the Federation. President Santiago Rosero responded in an interview with Mach Deportes of Ecuador: “If Richard is disappointed in the Federation, the Federation is also disappointed in Richard. In the end absolutely nothing has been decided. He sees himself at a disadvantage and goes out to give these types of statements.”

“Richard Carapaz never had the slightest respect, because he never answered our calls,” added the manager. On May 26, the FEC will have a meeting with the UCI in which, according to Rosero, it will request one more place for Ecuador. For now, that would be the date on which the final decision regarding the Olympic quota will be announced.

This exchange of statements even reached the Ecuadorian Ministry of Sports. Minister Andrés Guschmer Tamariz published a statement in which they request a report from the FEC in which “it indicates and explains with the greatest possible precision, the criteria and classification system (…) and this mechanism must be framed in an honest, fair process and transparent.”


Jhonatan Narváez, who has been involved as the other cyclist in dispute for the spot, did not want to get into controversy. He published on his social networks that he will respect the decision made by the Federation. “If it turns out to be me who will have the honor of representing our country, I want to ensure that I do so with the utmost integrity and dedication (…) I trust that you have the ability to make fair and beneficial decisions for the well-being of the sport and the country “.

The 27-year-old cyclist from Sucumbo is one of Ecuador’s greatest exponents on the world stage today. He was national champion in 2017 and 2024. In 2023 he won the gold medal at the Santiago 2023 Pan American Games and is currently completing a great performance at the Giro d’Italia. He won the first stage, becoming the second Ecuadorian to do so after, precisely, Carapaz.

Narváez, al centro, en el podio de Santiago 2023.

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