*This will be short and sweet as I’m terribly hungover and tired, apologies. Normal service will resume tomorrow evening.*
My oh my, what an exciting stage! A massive break of 41 riders got away early in the stage. The eventual winner came from that group and it was Robert Gesink who rode the final climb fantastically well, beating Elissonde and Silin who rounded out the podium. Annoying having two of the stage picks finishing 2nd and 4th, oh well, it was a great win by Gesink though and he fully deserves it!
Behind saw some very interesting GC moves, with Yates making an attack on the penultimate climb. He made it stick and ended up gaining a minute or so on Quintana. Chaves and Konig also gained some time, as the two favourites marked each other out of it. Valverde was the big loser on the day, conceding 9 minutes to his rivals. Dropping him way down on GC.
Let’s have a look at tomorrow’s stage.
Short and sharp.
About half the amount of climbing metres that we had today, but packed nicely into 118km of racing. It will be another fast start to the day before the riders reach the first categorised climb of the day. Alto de Petralba is 6.3km long at 5%. The break may only escape here!
The 2nd official climb is the Alto de Cotefablo, coming in at 12.5km in length, averaging only 4.3%. However, there is a false flat section half way up the climb. This will offer the riders some respite before tackling the second part.
However, the stage is all about the final climb.
Not a tough climb, but after today’s efforts it will sting the legs. It’s very stop start but it really shouldn’t be a challenge for the main GC guys.
How will the stage pan out?
Short stages more often than not lead to exciting racing and with the precedent being set today, I expect the GC guys to be full gas all day.
The climbs really aren’t that tough, so it will be fatigue that will cause any gaps. Of course, the better climbers have more of a chance of creating gaps. But on a stage like this, I don’t think there’s that much difference between the current top 5 on GC, possibly even the top 10.
Therefore, I think it could be a lesser GC guy who goes well here.
All hell will break loose tomorrow and the race will be on from the gun. The break has no chance!
Having two riders up on GC is key so that the riders can bounce attacks off of each other and mark the other teams/riders. I’ve been very impressed with the way Konig has raced this Vuelta so far and is playing a great second fiddle to Froome. With all the eyes on the Brit, Konig will use this to advantage and squirrel away for the stage win!
0.75pt EW Konig @ 66/1 with Bet365. As usual, hunt around later when other bookies have priced up.
Hope you enjoyed the preview. Apologies again for its short nature, I’m just too tired to be writing a load of stuff. Thankfully, the stage looks relatively straightforward. How do you think it will play out? As usual, any feedback is greatly appreciated. Anyway,
Those were My Two Spokes Worth.